The Art of Wooing

Tucked away inside today's Gospel story is a picture of a dysfunctional society at war with itself. The landscape of the tombs where the two demoniacs spent their existence was barren enough. But I visualise the whole landscape of that town as desecrated and barren - barren of beauty and harmony. Humans and nature in conflict. Perhaps …

Parables of Surprise

The Sunday Lectionary after feast of Cross in September offers various combinations of Epistle and Gospel readings that break the normal pairings - at least in the Greek tradition. Today's readings, Ephesians 2:4-10 and Luke 16:19-31, offer an interesting juxtaposition: faith or works? Paul says: "For by grace you have been saved through faith; and …

Thorn in the Flesh

Today we are again in Paul’s Second Letter to the Corinthians. In our passage today he is in self-reflexive mode, but here he boasts that he has been granted visions and revelations, even vision of Paradise. And not even a vision, but an actual transfer to Paradise - whether in the body or out of …

The Blessing of Abundance

I was struck by one phrase in the Epistle reading from 2 Corinthians 9:6-11. Τοῦτο δέ, ὁ σπείρων φειδομένως φειδομένως καὶ θερίσει, καὶ ὁ σπείρων ἐπʼ εὐλογίαις ἐπʼ εὐλογίαις καὶ θερίσει. That opening phrase, Τοῦτο δέ, is a call to attention: So now, this…this, pay attention, very important teaching about to follow. "He who sows sparingly …