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Mark 6:1-13

Proper 9B

This lection from Mark 6 provides a curious set of contrasts as well as a wonderful irony. First, we twice read the word “amazed” here: first in verse 2 and then again in verse 6.  Jesus is doing what he’s been doing ever since Mark 1 and 2 when he began his public ministry of…

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Mark 5:21-43

Proper 8B

Jesus was someone people wanted to touch and be touched by.  But in the case of Jesus, such touches were about far more than the people’s desire to make contact with somebody famous.  Jesus’ touch was said to have healing powers.  As we can see in this story, some had concluded that Jesus was a…

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Mark 4:35-41

Proper 7B

For fishermen ostensibly accustomed to being out on the water—presumably in all kinds of weather—the  disciples sure panicked over the weather often enough in the gospels.  The only calm one in all those storms-at-sea situations was the land-lubber carpenter from Nazareth.  So also here in Mark 4: with just a word, Jesus, who had not…

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Mark 4:26-34

Proper 6B

Like the message they convey, so also the two parables in this part of Mark 4 are mighty small.  This is no Parable of the Prodigal Son that takes up the better part of a whole chapter.  Jesus manages to convey something about the smallness of the kingdom via two stories that are themselves pretty…

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Mark 3:20-35

Proper 5B

“You can’t see the forest for the trees.”  The idea behind this saying is that sometimes we become so wrapped up in one thing that we lose sight of the larger picture.  Sometimes this can be humorous.  So on a TV show you may see a man who is obsessed with getting his tie knotted…

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Mark 16:1-8

Easter Day B

[Note: John 20 gets assigned by the Lectionary for every Easter Sunday in the three-year cycle. Since I have posted sermon ideas on that text often over the years, this year I will go with the alternative text from Mark 16.  But if you want to view a John 20 sermon commentary from last year,…

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Mark 11:1-11

Lent 6B

It’s something I’ve just never understood.  Ever since I was a little kid I have wondered why the various Gospel texts on Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem are so careful to include both Jesus’ detailed instructions on where to find a colt (and what to do with it once they located it) and then a nearly…

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Mark 8:31-38

Lent 2B

One reads of such terrible things now and then.  Stories about the happy couple who had a magical wedding and then died in a plane crash on the way to their honeymoon.  Or the man who just got the promotion he had been dreaming of but who gets hit by a bus on his way…

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Mark 1:9-15

Lent 1B

Lent begins in the wilderness.  And it’s not a terribly safe place to be all things being equal.  Some years ago after a seminar I was attending in Tucson, Arizona, wrapped up around the noon hour, my wife and I decided to check out a nearby National Park.  We took a big bottle of water…

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Mark 9:2-9

Epiphany 6B

“This is my Son, whom I love.  Look at him.  Isn’t this display something!  I mean, just get a load of this light show!” That’s what I’d expect God the Father to say. But he doesn’t.  Why not?  Isn’t it about the light show? We have seen such visual spectacles.  They typically happen every year…

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