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Jesus: Magician or Liberator?

For 21st Century Christianity, the question is, which interpretation makes the most sense? Magic and miracle, or liberation from injustice? Scholars and commentators are often accused of reading 21st Century world views back into 1st Century writings.

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Mary and James Meet Joseph of Arimathea- A Drama

A Drama for Good Friday (Act II)*After the crucifixion of Jesus, Mary, his mother, and James, his brother, go in search of the tomb to see where they have laid him. They encounter Joseph under the now empty cross and ask if he knows where they should go. Joseph explains who he is and how he, too, knew Jesus.

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A Progressive Easter Sermon

The following is a message by Rev. Roger Wolsey of Wesley Chapel in Boulder, CO is inspired by the resurrection stories in Mark, Matthew, Luke, and John; the book The Powers that Be by Walter Wink; and the book The Last Week by Marcus Borg & John Dominic Crossan. A few paragraphs are adapted from the last chapter of Jim Wallis’ The Call to Conversion. 
 

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Texts: John, Luke, Mark, and Matthew. Resource Types: Sermons.

From History To Mystery, The Life And Teachings Of The Historical Jesus

This book explores the quest for the Historical Jesus and seeks to discover the original meanings of his teachings, in particular his kingdom of God teachings. You will learn about the last 200 years of Jesus research, including the Jesus Seminar. The author discusses Gnosticism, The Gospel of Thomas, The Secret Gospel of Mark, The Gospel of Mary Magdalene along with the four canonical gospels; Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. The author spends much of her time investigating the Parables of Jesus. In the parables, Jesus preaches about “the kingdom of God.” This concept is taught by Jesus on two levels. One for the masses and one for his inner circle. The uncovering the “secret teachings” of the parables is very illuminating and inspirational. Whether you are a seminary student, pastor, educator, or layperson; this is a must read on the subject of the historical teachings of Jesus! The book was written by a respected scholar in Historical Christianity, Dr. Lisa Morris.

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Christmas

Christmas both mutes and heightens this impression that something under the sun is ferhoodled. On the one hand, people are often more civil and decent to each other. On the other, anything painful or ugly stands out more glaringly against the festive background, even taking on a tint of moral injustice. If people die in June, it’s sad; if they die in late December, it’s “a shame.”

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What Gift Will You Give?

I trust it will come as news to very few that the canonical gospels offer us two Christmas stories, and to those who have actually read the accounts it is clear that the two bear little resemblance to one another.  To be sure, the names of the infant, his mother, his nominal father, and the place of birth are the same; but nearly all the other details stand in striking and irreconcilable conflict.  Does this mean that Matthew’s narrative or Luke’s—or both—are simply to be rejected as wildly unreliable? Not if we adopt the strategy of understanding the two tales not as failed attempts at history, but as brilliantly conceived and wonderfully effective parables.

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What Else Could I Have Done? A Maundy Thursday or Good Friday Reading

This is the Passion story. The story of Jesus' betrayal and his death. Come and walk with the people that were with him during that time.

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Mary and James Under the Cross, A Drama for Good Friday

A Play by RB Sperling with E. Lindsay and C. Toaspern. Drama Setting: After the crucifixion of Jesus, witnessed by Mary, his mother, and James, his brother, Mary approaches the empty cross; James discovers her there. Devastated by the death of her son, Mary seeks solace in the last place she saw him. James, fearful of encountering the centurions who crucified his brother, seeks temporary protection in his mother's arms. Together they try to understand what the future may hold for them.

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Claiming the Chaos

A sermon for the Baptism of the Lord Sunday, or for any day dealing with themes of the human place within creation and nurturing our relationship with it.  It rather directly challenges literalist understandings of Scripture, especially the creation myths.

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Building Community With Our Differences

One of features marking the renaissance of Jesus studies is the centrality of the social world of Jesus. Because meanings are embedded in a social world, if we are to understand and appreciate what Jesus said and did, his message and activity need to be located in his social world.

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Topics: Bibles and Bible Study and Jesus Studies. Ages: Adult and Young Adult. Texts: Luke, Mark, and Matthew. Resource Types: Articles.
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