Tag Archives: Numbers 21:4-9

Bronze serpents and steel needles

The people found their way into the snake-infested territory through impatience, selfish grumbling, ingratitude against God, and concern each for their own comfort over the salvation of the whole people from slavery. As long as each person sat in their own poison, death pursued them. But when they looked to the sign that God had given them of hope and of mercy, they were made better, and not only as individuals, but the community recovered, and they were able to move on from that place. Continue reading

Posted in current events, homily, lectionary reflection, sermon | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Idols made of metal

The bronze serpent was not an amulet, but an icon of futility; an emblem of the impotence of evil in the sight of a gracious God.
The modern casting would be an AR-15 made into a museum piece, rendered harmless, useless, toothless by its irrelevance, not empowered by false reverence. Continue reading

Posted in current events, Gun control, gun safety, lectionary reflection, prayer, sermon preparation, story | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Year B Lent 4: snakes alive

There comes a time, Jesus tells Nicodemus, to look up, and to trust God, even though you know there are snakes snapping at your ankles, even though you know there is more work to do, more wilderness to slog through, more sin to solve, more than you can shake a stick at; there comes a time to look up and to trust God, even though what you see looking back is the serpent that bit you; even though what you see is the Son of Man crucified, dying on a cross. For God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Continue reading

Posted in sermon | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment