The Gracious Invitation – John 6 part 4 – Sermon for Trinity +12 – Year B 2018

Sermon for 12 after Trinity – Year B 2018
Proverbs 9:1-6
John 6:51-58

Gracious hospitality
Where do we live?

Earlier this week we had a curious and telling juxtaposition of readings at Morning Prayer. On the one hand there was a reading from 2 Samuel where David has it in mind to build a house for God, yet through a dream the LORD speaks to Nathan the prophet, telling him, briefly, not to be so presumptuous . . . Against this we read in Acts of the martyrdom of Stephen, and his speech which led to him being stoned to death. In which he recounts this very desire to build a house for God as the culmination of his indictment of God’s people.

He concludes with words inaccessible to David – those of the prophet Isaiah – “Heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool. What kind of house will you build for me, says the Lord,
or what is the place of my rest? Did not my hand make all these things?”

Did not my hand make all these things??

The image that comes to mind is that of a very small child receiving a lego set, and building a house for their parents to live in – but even a toddler would at some level understand that it was insufficient. David’s problem, and to a similar extent ours is – we have lost sight of where we live . . . It is not that God is too vast to live in any house we might build him, it is We who live in his house . . . we are as it were stranger, pilgrims, passing guests . . . yet you would not know. We treat it as if it is ours

If we understood that ‘The Earth is the LORD’s and all they that dwell therein’, would we have brought the house of the LORD, his creation, to the point of destruction. God provides a house for us, and we have trashed it. As we consider the growing climate chaos, with fear and trepidation, one note absent even from Christian discourse is the fear of the LORD – any deep sense that this is God’s house. The skies are my throne, the earth my footstool? What kind of house will You build for Me?? We are perhaps the AirBnB guests from the other place . . .

This failure to see where we are – to live out our lives in the light of this is our failure to Know God – manifested in our failure to Know who Jesus us – to recognise Him. As Isaiah goes on “But this is the one to whom I will look, to the humble and contrite in spirit, who trembles at my word.” To the one who hears and sees me – whose vision is filled with me. This is the heart of the message of repentance – ReOrient your gaze – look to God, for your life is a breath, it is all a gracious gift, and you dwell in his house

And all this comes to a focus in Jesus, and our seeing, or not seeing who he is.

As we have explored a little over the past few weeks, all of scripture is pointing in this direction and towards the person of Jesus. As John reminds us, Jesus invites us to see where He lives – the disciples follow him and ask, were are you staying, and he says, ‘Come and See’ – his first public act is precisely to do with where we live. Destroy this Temple and in three days I will rebuild it . . . they did not understand that he was talking of the Temple of his body . . . the skies are my throne, the earth is my footstool. Life itself flows from Him.

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being in him was life, and the life was the light of all people.”

He Is Life! He is the Centre of all things, in Him all things hold together.

So the Words of Scripture like those bicycle wheel spokes point us towards Christ Jesus. We gather hear to hear words which direct the gaze of our hearts, that we might See Him and Love Him. Then we feed on Him in bread and wine.

As the old dialect of my home county has it – in the beginning, there were nobbut God. Nothing.

But then God, out of Love, called into existence that which was not God. The Creation. A place where he would walk in the cool of the day, and share it with all that he had made. The birds of the air, the fish of the sea, and whatsoever moves in the paths of the deep.

And then, in Love he bound Himself to this Creation. In Christ Jesus, through the obedience of Mary, God as it were wove himself into this Creation in Love. In Jesus the human and God share in Life together, and all who believe in Him, all who See Jesus for who he is are invited to share in the Life of God, a life manifested by the banquet Wisdom has spread.

When we come together to worship as those baptised into the Life of Jesus, God feeds us with His Life, the Life of his Son in bread and wine, and we come to live truly in His house.

So Jesus said to them, ‘Very truly, I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood have eternal life, and I will raise them up on the last day; for my flesh is true food and my blood is true drink.

Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood abide in me – God has built a house – the body of HIs Son, the Church, the body which fills all things, which rooted in the Earth yet touches heaven. the home of all the baptised

Yet God condescends – not only does he invite us to live in him, as revealed through the pregnancy of Mary, in great humility he lives in us.

Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood abide in me – and I in them.

Just as the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father, so whoever eats me will live because of me. This is the bread that came down from heaven, not like that which your ancestors ate, and they died. But the one who eats this bread will live for ever.’

The Judeans then disputed among themselves, saying, ‘How can this man give us his flesh to eat?’ In bread and wine. This is my body, given for you – this is my blood shed for me – come eat and drink. In bread and wine, the divine life of Jesus is woven into the Creation. this is what we call Sacrament – it is a participation of the things of the Creation in the things of the Creator

When by Grace we are born into the World, a gracious invitation is given us, it is True Hospitality. Everything is laid on. The Banquet is ready – a table is laid for guests whom God desires to make his friends. As the old cultures knew, to accept and invitation to eat together was to accept an invitation into the life of someone else.

The word hospitality in Greek actually carries the sense of making friends of strangers. through our blindness we were strangers to God – God in Christ, heals our blindness and sets a table for us, and wet by week we take up the invitation, to sit and eat with Him. To share in the life of our Divine Host

The question as always remains, will we accept the hospitality of the living God and feed on his Life in Jesus – or will we opt for self catering?

In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit

Amen

‘I have food to eat of which you do not know’ Have we come to know this food?

Sermon notes for the twelfth Sunday after Trinity

John 6:35,41-45

‘I have food to eat of which you do not know’

Do you know this food?

Food is something with which we have become obsessed – we talk about it more than ever before and eat worse than ever before.

Recently I’ve been reading a fascinating book on diet, and why generally they don’t work – because of our micro biomes – that is the trillions of immigrants our body hosts which invade from moments after we are born and take up residence all over us and in our gut especially

The book is full of interesting things, like, did you know that you can take a swab from your armpit, and make cheese form the fungus growing there?

Well I don’t wish anyone to rush out and by yet more antiseptic hand washes etc. (Which seem to do us far far more harm than good . . .) . . . but it’s interesting to note that it is unseen things which have such an impact on us, indeed to a degree controlling what we eat, how we feel, and even perhaps what we think . . .

For what we think is amazingly malleable and open to manipulation of all sorts – so you can take a particular fungus – and culture it, and tell people that the smell is a cheese, and they will respond positively, or tel them that it is sweaty socks and they will not respond so kindly. 🙂 and the truth?? It is both 🙂 the same fungus can make a particular cheese as makes that interesting odour 🙂

(Or perhaps there’s a food snob thing going on here, when we say an expensive cheese smells like sweaty socks . . . )

our sense are fooled by things we don’t see – even our vision

Advert with youth and elderly woman holding a handbag . . . he is running to steal it – we draw back – a large packing case is falling towards her – he is rushing to save her

And of course they didn’t see truthfully the one coming to save them

you’ll remember last week when I spoke of the disciples as Jesus prepared to feed the crowds – of how they could only see the world through the lens of the economics of Pharaoh, or the emperor – only those who carried the denarius, the coins for a day’s labour, which carried the mark of the Emperor, or perhaps, the mark of the Beast? – only those who had this could eat . . . and the disciples could see nothing else

So too the crowds themselves. Jesus tells them they go after him, not because they saw the sign – they only came after him because he filled their stomachs

They say “Is this man not Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know’

What are they saying – they only see the man. What is more they only see him in terms of where he has come from, as far as they can see. He has come from Joseph – and we know where Joseph has come from, we know his mother and father . . . interestingly, there is no mention here of Mary, the mother of Jesus . . . but another day

As Jesus says elsewhere – you do not see me, you do not know me, because you do not know my Father. Only the one from God has seen the Father – but those who listen to the Father see who I am

As I have said over the last few weeks – the Scriptures can be thought of as spokes on the wheel of a bicycle – on their own, not seen with respect to the whole, they are unremarkable and can point anywhere. Indeed this is often how we use scriptures – but they form a coherent whole like the spokes of a wheel, when put together and we stand back and we see. they point to Christ Jesus himself. ‘The Scriptures testify about me’ Jesus himself says . . . like the photo of the young man and the elderly woman, it is only when we stand back that we see the saviour

These spokes come to a focus in the gospels, and I would like to suggest, the gospels come to their focus in John. listening to the words of the crowd – “Is this man not Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know’ we may well be thinking ‘didn’t we have this reading recently? Yes and no, we listened recently to Mark’s gospel, chapter six, where the people of Nazareth said – he is the carpenters son. His mother and brothers are here – and so seeing purely in human terms they fail to see who he is. So the crowds here in John focus on Jesus known humanity, whilst and do not perceive where he is from – ‘How does he now say, “I have come down from heaven”’ they do not See

The gospels come to a focus here in John, perhaps in these very chapters for Who Jesus is is the key theme of these chapters. Here in Chapter 6 we get everything coming together and it is revealed in the language of the gospel. There are powerful negatives – I am the bread of life – who comes to me will most assuredly will never, will not, will not hunger, they will not, will not thirst – and then – over and over again ‘Truly, Truly I say to you’ Four times within these few verses – Amen, Amen – a Solemn and binding statement. ‘Amen Amen – I say to you, the one who has faith has eternal life. I am the bread of Life”

I wonder if your remember the old J Arthur Rank films – at the beginning someone came out and stuck an enormous Gong – Most assuredly not! Amen, Amen. Boom, Boom Boom – Everything is resonating as we come towards the very truth of lIfe itself – found in Jesus Christ.

Which begs a question – have we found this life in Christ Jesus for ourselves. Here and now – in and amongst us? No one can come to me, Jesus says, unless the father draw him – everyone who listens to the Father and takes instruction from him, comes to me . . . and then Jesus starts to talk of himself as this food . . .

I think that we can know in a sense that we have seen Jesus for who he is – that we have come to know Him, if for example in our reading of the Scriptures we find a deep hunger satisfied – if they lead us into worship of God in Christ. If we can say out of our depths with St Thomas, My Lord and my God.

I recently heard a bishop complain that some of the clergy only read scripture in order to prepare for Sunday – I could hear what he was getting at – if their only focus was to write a sermon – but the riches of Christ are such that if we have come to know an love him, even a single word from his lips feeds us over and over, it is enough.

If we have discovered with Christ Jesus and in him the truth that ‘man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God. if we have discovered that deep satiation on reading these Scriptures which attest to Jesus Christ

This is Eternal Life – the Life of God breaking into our life, that our hunger now is for God himself in Christ. Thus we know that we have been drawn by the Father into his life, that we feed on it, in word, and as we shall see next week and the week after, in the Sacrament

In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, Amen

Caesar, Food and work – Sermons on John 6 (Part 2)

Sermon notes for Eleventh Sunday after Trinity
Year B 2018

Work, Life, and Food

‘Seek ye first the Kingdom of God, and His righteousness, and all these things will be added unto you’ – perhaps amongst the most challenging if not the most challenging words of Jesus . . .

Why? Well because they require us to completely change our economic order

it’s interesting that they come at the end of the Sermon on the Mount, as sermon about Economics – that is how we live together, and then Jesus gets down to ‘the bottom line’ Don’t fret about that stuff everyone else is absorbed in – like what you will eat and what you will wear and what you will drink – for your father in heaven knows you need all these things – rather seek His Kingdom and his righteousness – and these things will come to you.’

Orient your life towards God, and enter His economic order

it is perhaps no surprise that Christian faith so often collides with issues of money – or it should, for money is about the world economic order . . . and it is the order of Pharaoh, or of Caesar, or of the nation state, or big business – it doesn’t really matter when we speak of this – they are all one, in their way of running things, of ordering our economy, our way of living together, which is the way they proscribe for us, in which money and food and work are inextricably linked. And its all directed towards those in power.

[As an aside – this is no clearer than in Matthew and the conversation over taxes – Caesar’s image on the Money – the link between this and ‘the mark of the beast’ in Revelation is clear -without Money, without Caesar you don’t eat, and you eat on his terms]

Well you might think that our gospel today is a world away from all of that – in a sense it is, for the whole of Chapter 6 points us away from all that, to a different economy – one entered on and drawing its life form God in Christ Jesus – but the themes are the same.

As I said last week, Scripture is like a bicycle wheel – all spokes coming together, convening on God, in Jesus Christ. All of scripture is in all of Scripture, but the focus becomes clear in the gospels, where their focus is . . . well, focussed, and most especially in John’s gospel

Some think John ‘other worldly’ a spiritual gospel, but no. It draws together all of the themes of scripture as the spokes converge.

You may remember last week – how we saw the parallels between some old testament stories and what is played out on the shores of Galilee. How Jesus feeding the 5000 on the mountain was the manifestation of that meal of Moses and the elders with God on Mount Sinai

And the event? Well if we remember, John tells us ‘and the Passover of the Jews was near . . . the Passover is near. The Passover, when God set his people apart through the blood of the Passover lamb, and rescued them from the Economics of Pharaoh.

What were those economics? Well oddly enough they had come into being through on elf God’s people. Joseph. In time of plenty he ordered that part of the harvest be put into Pharaoh’s barns. Then in times of famine, Pharaoh graciously sold it back to them, to the extent that in the end, in order to work, they sold him their labour. No longer did the people labour for their own food needs directly, they worked for pharaoh on his projects and pharaoh then would give them money to buy food from him . . . As the French say ‘plus ça change . . .’

If you want to see examples of this in the world today consider those strains of GM wheat etc which are sterile. ‘Hey! come buy our seed! but don’t get any ideas about storing some for next year, because its modified to be sterile in its second year . . . but you can always come and buy some more, at the price we set . . .’

Or Something we have become so used to – 750ml of water . . . $2.50.

The Earth is the Lord’s says the psalmist, but you wouldn’t know it – and so accustomed have we become to this story – that we spiritualise our faith. We dream of another world – after we die. Seek God’s Kingdom – Try and live life here so you get to heaven at the end of it all . . . and if we think John’s gospel is spiritual, and not about the real world, then that merely reinforces that . . .

But you might say. where is Pharaoh, or his incarnation in John 6? John sets him before us as he tells the story – staring us in the face . . . as we heard last week . . . ‘Jesus went to the other side of the Sea of Galilee, also called the Sea of Tiberias.’

As we heard again this week – Then some boats from Tiberias came near the place where they had eaten the bread after the Lord had given thanks.

As Luke tells us ‘In the fifteenth year of the reign of Emperor Tiberius, when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea . . .’

Do you want know who was truly in charge in Galilee – why they even named the lake after him, and just a few years earlier, Herod Antipas had built a city in his name . . . Pharaoh Economics, Caesar Economics . . . are in full view here. They fill the imagination of the disciples

‘When Jesus looked up and saw a large crowd coming towards him, Jesus said to Philip, ‘Where are we to buy bread for these people to eat?’ He said this to test him, Jesus has one test and one alone – ‘do you see who I am? Do you Know me?? for he himself knew what he was going to do. Philip [not knowing who Jesus was] answered him, ‘Six months’ wages would not buy enough bread for each of them to get a little.’

Philip only knows the order of Pharaoh and Caesar – you work for money, and with money you buy food . . .

So in the centre of Caesar and Pharaoh economics, where ‘popular acclaim has built a city in the name of the one who supplies food, at a price, on the hill above the lake named after his honour – Jesus feeds the crowd . . . for free . . .

As i said, the scriptures are like spokes – directing us to this very point .. . where the word of the prophets come true

Ho, everyone who thirsts,
come to the waters;
and you that have no money,
come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk
without money and without price.

And so it came to pass – When they found Jesus on the other side of the lake, they said to him, ‘Rabbi, when did you come here?’ Jesus answered them, ‘Very truly, I tell you, you are looking for me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves. You just thought it was a miracle – you thought to make me your king by force because I fed you – you’ll make anyone king who feeds you – you’ll vote for anyone who will set the economy right – as long as your belly is full . . . you didn’t see that the food was pointing you to ME!!

Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread,and your labour for that which does not satisfy?
Do not work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures for eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For it is on him that God the Father has set his seal.’

What is the food that endures for eternal life?? It is the very life of God himself – given to us in Jesus – for This we are called to labour – make every effort to enter in at the narrow gate, for broad and easy is the way that leads to destruction, to the end of life and many follow it, but hard and narrow is the way that leads to life and few they are that find it.

Then they said to him, ‘What must we do to perform the works of God?’ What are they asking here – ‘How do we get bread??’ Work = Money = Bread

Jesus answered them, ‘This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.’Jesus answered them, ‘This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.’

And it is a work – all of the Sciprutres testify to this – throughout God’s perplexity is expressed thus, after all I have done for you – why do you still live under the old economic order . . .?

God rescued his people from egypt – then for forty years they were applied to learning to believe in Him, to trust him – to seek His Kingdom and His righteousness – and yet as they went into the land of promise they forgot and soon looked around them at all they had and were saying – it is my work that has acquired all this for me . . . and so they were given into the hands of another pharaoh and another and another that they might learn . . .

Listen carefully to me, and eat what is good,
and delight yourselves in rich food.
Incline your ear, and come to me;
listen, so that you may live.

Seek after him with all your heart and mind, and all these things will be given you as well – Do not work for food that perishes but for the food that endures for eternal life – set you heart on Hgod in Jesus Christ – desire Him in through and above all things and he will satisfy you – but do not seek him because you want a full belly or an easy life – Pharaoh is happy to sell that to one or two so that the rest can imagine that that is the way – no – seek him for himself

What is the world? to believe in the one he has sent

We have oriented our worship towards God – let it not be an empty gesture. Let us desire God in through and above all things and together let us begin to live out of a different economic order where freely sharing all that God has given us is the natural order of things

in the name of the one who has come down from heaven, Jesus the bread of Life

Food and Life – Part 1 (Sermons on John 6)

Sermon notes for the eleventh Sunday after Trinity
Yr B 2018

John 6:1-21

Food and Life

Part 1

Sermon notes

House prices continue to say in Dunedin . . . a good sign? A healthy Economy?

Economy – a word the meaning of which has so changed that we might ask if it has completely reversed.

The health of the economy . . .

The Economic Trinity?? GDP?? No

Economy – Oikos-nomos – the law of the household – how we live together
(Econ Trin – the inner life of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit)

Rising house prices a sign that how we live together is improving ???

We’ll return to this idea again and again in the coming weeks as we listen to John 6 – Jesus feeds the 5000 and what this means

What is it to live together??

Scripture is like a bicycle wheel – all the spokes necessary for it to hold together – all pointing towards the hub – God – manifested in Jesus Christ, the Anointed One . . .

So this event, this feeding has so very very many echoes in Scripture, for here we are so close to the hub of it all

Jesus comes up on the mountain – God’s people come to the mount of the LORD – as they had come before at Sinai

So the people of God met with the LORD in Sinai – following the first passover – and there’s an incident which man of us may not be aware of – Gen 24 ‘Then Moses and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel went up, and they saw the God of Israel. Under his feet there was something like a pavement of sapphire stone, like the very heaven for clearness. God did not lay his hand on the chief men of the people of Israel; also they beheld God, and they ate and drank.

they ate and drank with God on the mountain . . .

But the OT is but a shadow of the new – for at Sinai it was just the elders – Jesus went up the mountain and sat down there with his disciples. Now the Passover, the festival of the Jews, was near. When he looked up and saw a large crowd coming towards him – not just the leaders, not just the elite – now the people are coming up the mountain

This is the Salvation of God! being enacted – Salvation – Life!
And at the heart of that Salvation – at the heart of Life is food

Another word distorted – Company.
Economy – about how we live together becomes about Work and money, so to Company

What is Company??? Latin- Com Panis – Together with Bread

When you share bread together – when we sit together at table – we share Life . . .

Note last week – I spoke of how we oriented ourselves to the Sun, to Life
It is the Same with Food – it give us Life and it points us to Life
Something happens when we face the Light of Life
Something happens when we share food

One of the prime house price drivers in Western countries is simply this – more and more people live alone . . . our relationship with food is distorted in so many ways, but perhaps no more than the fact that we eat for fuel, often alone – when Food is for our shared existence – for it is Life Shared!!

Food is Life Shared

Most especially when it is the life of another . . . So the lamb of God comes up on the mountain

And we are back in other scriptures as Abraham had come up onto the mountain of Moriah

Abraham looked up and saw a ram, caught in a thicket by its horns. Abraham went and took the ram and offered it up as a burnt-offering instead of his son. So Abraham called that place ‘The Lord will provide’; as it is said to this day, ‘On the mount of the Lord it shall be provided.’

Behold the Lamb of God – upon the mountain . . .

Jesus takes the bread – blesses and breaks it, and it never runs out. Indeed it overflows! We come to this table – we sit and eat with God – and the overflow, the twelve baskets full, enough for each of the disciples, flows on out into the world

All things come from God – he invites us to His table to share in life with him – this is God’s Economy – Keeping Company with God

Ad Orientem – Trinity +8 YrB 2018

Sermon notes – Sunday July 22nd, 2018
8 after Trinity – Year B

Making the two one – One Body – One Direction

Return after trip to UK – doubly jet lagged!

Where am I? What time is it? Profoundly Dislocated and Disoriented

Out of touch with existence – those things which properly locate us in the world – Tim and Space

End of June this year – Fb posts celebrating Anniversaries – a place in time. Profoundly ordinary, except, they were from folk celebrating the 20th anniversary of their ordination . . . And this I found troubling -indeed I always have.

England – two colleagues celebration services for 40 years of ordained ministry – whilst a curate – the Revd John Vipond – 70 years!

But no one celebrating the years since their baptism . . . That which Unites all Christians – their baptism. gives us a Place – in One Body. The celebration of that which divides??

Church docs – you’d think they had this right – but no. GSTHW16 clergy care – “being under Holy Orders in an ecclesiastical office is a claim by God on the whole of the life of ordained persons. Ordination changes the relationship between the ordained person, God and the rest of the body of Christ. Through ordination they enter a place of responsibility within the Church that is accountable to God.”
This had me screaming, NO!! Baptism does this!! Not ordination

Oh for the day when the church makes as much fuss over a baptism as it does over an ordination . . .

We believe in the priesthood of all believers – this goes back to Exodus – first the people are declared to be ‘a kingdom of priests’, Then you have the specific priestly order within Israel, the Aaronic priesthood – which reveals the character of the whole people. But we have at once elevated the ministry of the ordained Over the whole body – and minimised baptism . . . to the cost of us all

St Paul – For he is our peace; in his flesh he has made both groups into one and has broken down the dividing wall, that is, the hostility between us. – Jew and Gentile – Jews Clean – Gentiles unclean. Two classes – out of them he makes a Holy Temple, his One body.

The separation of lay and ordained is contrary to God’s work in Christ

anniversaries, Time

Space?

The difference has been exacerbated in our lifetime by liturgical changes, in the shape of the Eucharist

Before going to the UK we were exploring this true nature of Space and the flow of Gods Grace, from Goe, through the people of God who look to him for Life itself – and then out into the world. This was modelled at the Eucharist. The liturgical shape embodied the spiritual reality – everyone face East. East towards the Sun, that which in the Creation speaks to us of the eternal.

At baptism, you faced west to renounce the devil and all his works, and then you faced East towards the rising Sun, to be oriented to God, that God might have a total claim on your life
At the Eucharist we have the great thanksgiving – offered to ??? God! By??? the whole people of God!! We are to be directed all of us to God – but back in the last century, the clergy started to face the people – put another way, the Church in the West turned in on itself. We faced one another, and it is perhaps no surprise that the rapid decline in the life of the church dates from around the same time . . .

Rather we should all face the same way – towards that Life that is the bread from heaven, with which the LORD feeds his people.

Time and space are Created Realities, they are given us to embody the KoG amongst ourselves in our worship. They Matter, because they are part of the Creation which St Paul says “For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. Ever since the creation of the world his eternal power and divine nature, invisible though they are, have been understood and seen through the things he has made.” So supremely the invisible Logos, the Word of God, takes on flesh, the unseen becomes seen, the eternal shares in our temporality – and thus all creation is revealed as a manifestation of His glory

Last time, I recounted how we were a people Eternally oriented – towards the Father in our life together – and so oriented as eternal within time, so also in space – we turn together to God in worship

The Flow of Grace – touching the eternal

Sermon notes
Sunday – Five after Trinity – YrB 2018

Psalm 8
2 Cor 8:7-15
Mark 5:21-43

The Flow of Grace – touching the Eternal

Every generous act of giving, with every perfect gift, is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. James 1:17

Metaphysics – and ontology
The Science of Faith

Our Father – Orients us

Psalm 8 – places us

Such thinking was very common but is something we have lost – to our detriment

All good and perfect gifts come from the father of lights

Jesus is perfectly oriented to the Father – this is what it means when we say ‘Christ Jesus is the Image of the invisible God – the firstborn over all creation’

So Life Flows through Him
the kingdom comes from heaven to earth Through him

I only do what I see the Father doing

How interesting that it is this poor woman from whom her life has quite literally been flowing these 12 years who has faith in Jesus. She recognises the flow of Grace, of Life. She doesn’t just have ‘some medical condition’ – literally her Life is flowing out of her body

And Jesus is immediately ‘knew in himself that power had gone out from him’ – The flow of Life, of Grace, of Goodness – New Creation – Literally the Kingdom of God comes Through Him. Through His body!

The Human placed betwixt heaven and Earth – the conduit of the Life of God – the Life that is Eternal

Jesus is always giving his life away to those who look to the heavens – The Cross is the fullest expression of the Image of God – pouring out His Life for the sake of the world.

This is why we are called to repentance – to orient ourselves towards The Heavenly One
To be conduits of Eternal Life

The Giving of Which Paul speaks is utterly natural to those who know the truth of the Kingdom – the Grace of God which is to flow through us. We do not carefully calculate – we give to all who ask of us. This Life is the eternal life – it is the daily manna from heaven – it is the Life of Christ In Us

this is why we pray our Father, and often.