Tag: jesus

is this christianity?

A two part blog post about the Mars Hill church in Seattle and Christian discipline from Matthew Paul Turner:

Part 1: Mark Driscoll’s Church Discipline Contract

Part 2: Mark Driscoll’s ‘Gospel Shame’

Do we really wonder why people don’t like church?  This seems to me about as far from Jesus’ message of love as you can get.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2012/is-this-christianity/



Sweet Jesus, talking
   his melancholy madness,
      stood up in the boat
         and the sea lay down,

silky and sorry.
   So everybody was saved
      that night
         But you know how it is

when something
   different crosses
      the threshold–the uncles
         mutter together,

the women walk away,
   the young brother begins
      to sharpen his knife.
         Nobody knows what the soul is.

It comes and goes
   like the wind over the water–
      sometimes, for days,
         you don’t think of it.

Maybe, after the sermon,
   after the multitude was fed,
      one or two of them felt
         the soul slip forth

like a tremor of pure sunlight,
   before exhaustion,
      that wants to swallow everything,
         gripped their bones and left them

miserable and sleepy,
   as they are now, forgetting
      how the wind tore at the sails
         before he rose and talked to it–

tender and luminous and demanding
   as he always was–
      a thousand times more frightening
         than the killer sea.

            –Mary Oliver from House of Light

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2009/maybe/

Love and Sin

“In a sense, this terrible situation is the pattern and prototype of all sin: the deliberate and formal will to reject disinterested love for us for the purely arbitrary reason that we simply do not want it.  We will to seperate ourselves from that love.  We reject it entirely and absolutely, and will not acknowledge it, simply because it does not please us to be loved.  Perhaps the inner motive is that the fact of being loved disinterestly reminds us that we all need love from others, and depend upon the charity of others to carry on our own lives.  And we refuse love, and reject society, in so far as it seems, in our own perverse imagination, to imply some obscure kind of humiliation.”

–Thomas Merton “The Seven Story Mountain

It is an interesting idea that sin is really just a rejection of love.  To be honest, I had to go to the dictionary to make sense of the term “disinterested love.”  My first thought when reading this paragraph was “how can you love something disinterestly?”  What the dictionary reminded me was disinterest is not the lack of interest, but the lack of self-interest.

I think that this is one of the most powerful aspects of the character of Jesus.  His complete disinterested love for the whole world.  It is an ideal that is simply amazing in scope.  Just a fraction of this type of love would make such a difference in this world.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2006/love-and-sin/

“do unto others”

My neighbor went and saw Ira Glass at the conclusion of the Wordstock festival Sunday night. She related the following story from his presentation: (Thanks Elizabeth!)

so last night [Ira Glass]
played a short clip
[listen to the clip at the bottom of this post]
from a guy who was trying to explain to his daughter
about the crucifixion of christ
after driving by a cross
with jesus on it
he explained that at the time “do unto others” was a radical idea
and he told it in little 4-year-old language
a couple weeks later was martin luther king day
so he was off work
when his daughter wanted to know why
he explained the story of martin luther king
the girl asked
did he tell the stuff jesus told?
her father said, actually, yes
then she asked
“did they kill him too?”

at the end ira closed with a thought
and it choked him up
he said
there is so much wrong in the world today
but i do believe
that the best way, the only way
to overcome the evils
is to be ourselves

and somehow
it didn’t sound corny
at all

 i think the success of ira’s show
is proof
that we are all of the same cloth
that we yearn to hear of the joys and plights and sorrows and absurdities of others
because they are all within us
we hear it and we know
it is real

 Kids – Jesus & MLK Jr.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2006/do-unto-others/