“Doing Community in a #Hashtag World”

Matthew 18:15-20/Romans 13:8-10 For biblical scholars and, well, for preachers, making ancient texts relevant to today’s world is a real challenge. One can make the common mistake of taking a text from the bible and just applying directly it to whatever situation you are dealing with today. This seems pertinent … Read More

“Rewarding Criminal Behavior”

~ A Crisis of Forgiveness ~ Matthew 18:21-25/Psalm 103:1-13   Early in my time here at Noe Valley Ministry, I preached a sermon on this passage. I raised the question: Does forgiveness excuse bad behavior? When we are dealing with people who have wronged us or hurt us, doesn’t forgiving … Read More

“Was Jesus Racist?”

~ Matthew 15:21-28 ~ The events of last weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia and subsequent verbiage by our president and others has, needless to say, caused considerable consternation and angst. Indeed, it is downright scary. This morning I want to address these events in light of our two scripture readings this … Read More

“The Compassionate Feast”

~ Matthew 14:13-21 ~ Jesus was not having a good day. In the days prior, according to Matthew, Jesus had gone to his hometown of Nazareth and had been rejected badly. As Matthew puts it, “he did not do many miracles there because of their lack of faith.” Now, today, … Read More

“The Pervasive God”

~ Matthew 13:31-33 ~ Today, two short and pithy parables. They are two in a string of parables Jesus has been telling the people to try to help them understand the nature of the kingdom of God. Jesus’ proclamation is that the kingdom of God has broken into human history … Read More

“Word of Welcome”

~ Matthew 10:40-42 ~ When you are bone-dry thirsty there is nothing like a cup of cold water.  And so, it is not surprising that Scripture is replete with images of a drink of water satisfying spiritual longing.  As the Psalmist says, “I thirst for you, O God, in a … Read More