Chapter By Chapter - Mark 3

Withered Hand This miracle at the beginning of chapter 3, the healing of the withered hand at the synagogue on the Sabbath, is the conclusion of the conflict we’ve seen brewing with Jesus and the Pharisees since the beginning of chapter 2. It began with the healing of the lame man and Jesus’ declaration of the forgiveness of his sins. Then it continued with Jesus’ feasting with sinners, tax collectors and other such unclean folk as well as Him allowing His disciples to pick g

Chapter by Chapter - Mark 2

Take up thy Bed Many of us are very familiar with this story. It’s been a classic in Sunday school for generations. But do we really understand what’s happening? As with rest of the Gospel we need to move beyond the quaint Sunday school version and examine this story with fresh eyes, connect them with what else is happening in Mark and connect it with the rest of scripture. Now if you recall back earlier, we saw that the “entire city” of Capernaum was at the door. Now we see

The Absence of a Name Tag

America has long heralded the praises of individualism and autonomy. It may seem like the days of honor and familial living are firmly behind us. Upon first hearing this critic, you may find my accusations thin and brash. Of course I am not referring to every Westerner or every American, but to the social norms. The current climate wreaks of self-love and self-discovery. This is meant to be done with no aid of outside influences or religious candor. This impotent gospel is pr

A Tale of Suffering Retold

When we find ourselves face to face with the deepest loss a human can imagine, where do we turn? Is there anyone or anything that can give us answers? Is there any balm that can soothe the anguish of a soul? The Christian ought to shout emphatically, “YES!”. We have 66 books which point us to the grand narrative in God’s word. From God’s creation, man’s rebellion, Jesus’ redemption and the promise of the reconciliation of all things, we have this hope amidst a torrent of chao

Forgiveness isn't pain free

Today in my devotions I came across a familiar story that always seems to leave an impact. It is the story of King David who sins by murdering Uriah in order to have Bathsheba for himself. In this story found in 2 Samuel 11-12 David commits murder (Uriah) and adultery (Bathsheba).. two of those sins we seem to elevate above most others. David acknowledges that the one who has done such a thing deserves to die (2 Samuel 12:5), but in the end Nathan (the prophet in the story) s