Our New Testament studies so far have centered on Jewish territory - Jerusalem, Galilee, and Samaria (perhaps less Jewish, but still under strong Jewish influence). This week we follow Jesus across the sea to a place where Judaism was just one option among many, and probably not the preferred option. A world not so different from our own perhaps? (33) The Difference between Magic and Miracles Jesus is a man of action as well as words. Now, having preached to Galileans in and around Capernaum, he sets of in a boat for “the other side.” It’s not just the other side of the lake—it’s the other side of the world; a place where the Jewish faith is not dominant; it’s just one of many options; a place where the “pearl of great price,” which Matthew described in one of last week’s parables, will make perfect mystical sense. Read Matthew 8:23-27, Mark 4:35-41, Luke 8:22-25 1. One boat or several? In practice you would probably need more than one boat to carry Jesus’ followers.
Showing posts from December, 2018
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We're coming to the end of the parables in our New Testament studies, and the stories are coming closer to the end of the world. With fiery furnaces and freezing seas... exciting times perhaps, or just an image of the present day? Hopefully we'll find some fodder for modern-day parables as we read, and maybe even some analogies to describe the treasure we're seeking. (32) How important is this “treasure”? In Matthew Jesus tells these parables to crowds at the edge of the sea. In the other gospels, the location and timing may be different, but the parables are pretty much the same. Why? This next parable has a very seashore feel to it. Read Matthew 13:47-52 1. We mentioned the end-times last time. Which end-times parable has stuck most in your mind (maybe from childhood)? Why? 2. What has a fiery furnace to do with a rather cold inland sea? 3. Is it our job or the angels’ job to separate the good from the bad? 4. And if tha