“Tortured Logic: Us vs. Them”

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~ John 3:14-21/Psalm 121 ~ The Gospel of John is an enigma. It contains some of the best known stories in all the bible, such as the wedding at Cana, the woman at the well and the healing of the blind man. And some very well known phrases, such as … Read More

“What Went Wrong?”

Adam and Eve, Rembrandt

~ Genesis 2:15-17; 3:1-7 ~ As a child growing up in church, hearing the creation stories, I pretty much heard them as true stories. You might say, as Marcus Borg puts it, I heard them in my “precritical naïveté” stage of life. I had no reason to believe that the … Read More

“Ashes to Hope”

Ash Wednesday

Ash Wednesday Meditation Joel 2:1-2, 12-17/ Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21 I remember as a child on a certain day in February seeing people about town with black smudge marks on their foreheads. When I dared looked closer I saw that these black smudge marks were in the shape of a cross. … Read More

“Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread”

Matthew 6:24-34 A very familiar phrase found in what is traditionally called “The Lord’s Prayer” is “give us this day our daily bread.” Here at Noe Valley Ministry we refer to it as the “Prayer of Jesus.” In the version we’ve been reciting recently, a translation by the Quaker writer, … Read More

“Jesus, This Is Really Hard to Do!”

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~ Matthew 5:38-48/Leviticus 19:18/Deuteronomy 19:16-21 ~ My sermon title today can be said in two different ways. One is as a prayer: “Jesus, this is really hard to do.” The second is, if you will, as a profane exclamation: “Jesus, this is really hard to do!” For here we have … Read More

Anger Issues


~ Matthew 5:21-26/Psalm 119:1-8 ~ We continue our journey through Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount. Two weeks ago, we considered the Beatitudes, about how the Kingdom of God is for those who do justice and those who experience injustice. Last Sunday we talked about how we are salt and light … Read More