Simeon startled Mary in the temple when he suddenly declared about her baby, “This child is appointed for the fall and rise of many in Israel, and for a sign to be opposed – and a sword will pierce even your own soul – to the end that thoughts from many hearts may be revealed.” (Luke 2:34-35) There would be great things ahead for which Jesus’ mother could be proud, but she also would feel tremendous pain. Every mother can identify with that. Continue reading
It is said that Jesus made his fatal journey to Jerusalem in the spring, 33 a.d. Due to historical errors in ancient date keeping, the exact time is unknown, although the world has settled on complicated formulas to settle an arbitrary date for what has come to be known as Easter. The actual Biblical accounts mention “winter” (John 10:23), and that people were warming themselves over fires at the Jewish trial of Jesus (John 18:18). A quick Internet search showed 20 C. weather in the city today (68 F); hardly a time for bonfires. Therefore we don’t really know the actual dates for the events surrounding the trials, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Continue reading
We crave family this time of year. Many drive long distances to be with them. Turkey dinners are carefully laid out for relatives. Even broken families wish for better times and may attempt reconciliation. Loneliness can be profound when one has little family left. Some people have so much family to visit, they become exhausted.
Scripture applauds good families. In Joseph and Mary’s family we see a glimpse of togetherness during a special time. Luke 2:41-52 tells us how their extended family traveled together to Jerusalem for Passover. This would have been a happy time for each of them. When the 12-year old Jesus went missing, they assumed he was somewhere nearby with relatives. We can safely let down our guard around family. Continue reading