Sermons from May 2016

4 Items



I think Jesus told this parable to celebrate whistle-blowers and to inspire his audience to take them in. There are good people who blow the whistle on injustice and we need to stick together. Jesus was not only about pointing out injustice. He was about transforming it.

A Shrewd Spirit


…the parables of Jesus were designed to get people thinking and talking. They sought to show how things were and how they could be. They were often parables about how to survive in a system that worked against you.



What if this parable of Jesus was an invitation for us to talk about justice, ideal justice and justice as to how it often works itself out. What if we were to use these parables of Jesus to honestly expand awareness of how things work in our world and for whom?

Blaming the Victim


This tendency to spiritualize the parables takes off in the history of interpretation over the centuries.

One of the ways this is done is to allegorize the parables and have the ruling elites be stand-ins for God. Here is a rule of thumb: whenever we hear a parable of Jesus about a king, a landowner, a landlord, a judge, a wealthy farmer, or a generic “rich person” be suspicious. Remember these are despised people by the folks whom Jesus represents. They are the bad guys. They are the ones who are the oppressors.

Yet in the interpretation of the parables, they are often allegorized as God. What’s up with that? Something smells.