Fishing for People

Today we are fishing for people (Mark 1:14-20). This marks the beginning of Jesus’s ministry in Galilee, when he finds Simon and Andrew fishing and tells them to follow him, and he will make them fishers of people. This painting is by contemporary artist Victor Bregeda, whose art can be found in the homes of …

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How are you feeling?

How are you feeling right now? No, really. Like how are you feeling? Specifically. One thing I’ve been hearing from people a lot lately – especially after the events of January 6th – is that they don’t even know anymore. Their feelings are so jumbled up, they are so raw, that they can’t even connect …

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Why Two Turtle Doves?

Today’s scripture includes two stories of a young Jesus in the temple. The first story is of his presentation as a baby. They also brought two turtle doves to offer as a sacrifice “according to what is stated in the law of the Lord” (Luke 2:24). Why a turtledove? We can find the answer to …

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I dare you to dance

This painting is called Friendly Friendship Baptist Church, and was made by Ernie Barnes (an ex-NFL player!) in 1994. Look at that movement! That joy! Don’t you want to just climb on in and join them?

The Faces of God

Today’s topic is faces. Faces of God, faces of Emperor. The texts are Exodus 33:12-23 (Moses asks to see the Lord, or the Lord’s glory; YHWH concedes); Matthew 22:15-22 (Render unto Caesar). As you might imagine, depictions of God in art tend toward the old man in the clouds imagery, like this one, God the Father, …

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The Golden Calf

One of today’s lectionary readings is Exodus 32:1-14, the Golden Calf. And by golly do I EVER I have some relevant art to share for this scripture! This piece is by artist Damien Hirst. It is a bull. An ACTUAL bull. Its hooves and horns are dipped in 18-carat gold, and it is wearing the …

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The Feeding of the 5,000

One thing I love about Jesus is his focus on food. His first miracle was to save a wedding party from the perils of having to drink water, by turning it into wine instead. The only miracle story in all four gospels is the feeding of the 5,000, in which Jesus creates a feast for a large crowd.

Jesus carrying a sword

Matthew 10:34-42 includes one of the many seemingly contradictory statements from Jesus about weaponry: “Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.” Iconic depictions of Jesus with a sword are rare, but they do exist – interestingly, most of them are modern. But here is one from the 14th century. It is a fresco at the Vysoki Dechani Monastery in Kosovo, Serbia. The Greek says “This Sword is the Cutter of Sins.”

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