Genesis 1 and 2 aren't as much about the "when" and "how" the universe came to be, as much as they are about the "Who" and the "why" it came to be.
How do you interpret the world you see on the news and on social media? Would you say that it is all under the loving control of an all-powerful God? It sure seems like whoever is calling the shots is anything but "good" or "holy" or "right." If we go to the news media for answers to this question, there's a good chance we'll end up angry, anxious, and probably very judgmental. If we go to the Bible for answers, we'll find that things aren't always as they seem.
After talking to his critics about how the kingdom of God has come on earth, and telling them to keep their eyes open to the kingdom, Jesus gets invited to a dinner party where he insults and criticizes the Pharisees on the specific ways they’ve shut their eyes to the Truth.
When Jesus asks us to follow him, he’s not inviting us to add him onto our lives, as if he’s asking us to add coaching little league to our lives. It’s an all or nothing kind of ask.
Jesus sets his face to journey to Jerusalem. Why? Because he knows what he came to do, and he intends to do it.
Like a preview for a movie, Jesus allows three of his disciples a sneak peek into his future glory. The problem is that they are sound asleep. God speaks his audible words over Jesus, confirming him as the Messiah and reminds him that the plan of redemption is right on schedule.
The greatest question you will ever answer in your lifetime is not “who are you?” It’s not “Will you marry me?” And it’s not “Does this dress make me look fat?” The greatest question you will ever answer is one from the lips of Jesus himself: “Who do you say that I am?”
A "summons" is an authoritative call to action. You can be summoned by a judge, by a school principal, or by your mother when it's time for dinner! But Jesus is about to give his disciples a summons. Three scenes in Luke 9 illustrate this call to action.
Jesus said that people who come to him, hear his words, and act on them, are like a person who built their house along a hurricane coast fully equipped to handle "the Big One."
“Blessed are you who are poor, for the kingdom of God is yours.” Does that mean having money is bad? And what are we supposed to do with this bit about loving your enemies? Or did we miss something in those 4 words: “Yours is the kingdom”?