Be Annoying for God (Heretic’s Guide for Sunday, Oct 20, 2013)

jim carey

Bible Cliff’s Notes (My dog ate my Bible!) First Reading Jeremiah 31:27-34 God is preparing to spiritually clean house with the people of Israel. Although they broke the covenant with God that had been made before their time in Egypt, God will infuse this new covenant within them, on their hearts, so they cannot forsake it. All former sins will be forgiven and there will be a new beginning. and Genesis 32:22-31 Jacob wrestles with a man in a place he names “Peniel,” after the … [Read more...]

A Leper’s Messiah (Study for Sunday, Oct 13, 2013)

breaking bad

Bible Cliff’s Notes (My dog ate my Bible!) First Reading Jeremiah 29:1, 4-7 Jeremiah advises the exiles from Jerusalem to Babylon to go one with their lives while in exile, and even to pray for the welfare of their occupiers, since their well-being and the exiles’ well-being are married together. 2 Kings 5:1-3, 7-15c Story of Naaman (copied from July 7, 2013 study) Naaman is a great warrior for King Aram but he suffers from leprosy.  Elisha invites Naaman to his house in order to … [Read more...]

Discussion/Reflection Questions for this week

I look forward to hearing your thoughts on these in the comments below, or raise your own questions. Can doubt and faith coexist? How does that look for you? How do you feel about the statement: "The opposite of faith isn't doubt; the opposite of faith is certainty."? Is it fair for a church to ask their pastor to make explicit statements of faith? What things in your life challenge your faith the most? What do you do when you find yourself surrounded by doubt? … [Read more...]

Getting Honest About Doubt (Heretic’s Guide for Oct 6, 2013)

olivier_hamlet

Bible Cliff’s Notes (My dog ate my Bible!) First Reading Lamentations 1:1-6 Judah has been invaded and captured by the Babylonians. The citizens of Judah fled and abandoned the city. This is a poem, personifying the city as if it were an abused and neglected woman. 3:19-26 In affirmation of the hope still found in God, despite present circumstances. and Habakkuk 1:1-4; 2:1-4 The Oracle is crying out for relief from their captors. It seems that there is no end in sight to the … [Read more...]

Rich People Suck (Heretic’s Guide for Sept 29, 2013)

EatTheRich

Bible Cliff’s Notes (My dog ate my Bible!) First Reading Jeremiah 32:1-3a, 6-15 The prophet Jeremiah writes from jail about a command from God to purchase some land in Judah, even as it is under siege by the Babylonian military, which is threatening to bring it under their control. and Amos 6:1a, 4-7 Amos offers a grave warning for those who live the easy life, while not mourning the ruin of the people descended from Joseph , will be the first to suffer in exile for their … [Read more...]

Mutual Interest is Self-Interest (Heretic’s Guide for Sept. 22, 2013)

transformer

Bible Cliff’s Notes (My dog ate my Bible!) First Reading Jeremiah 8:18-9:1 The prophet mourns over the suffering of his people He longs for healing for those who seek it, and is heartsick for those who have died among them. and Amos 8:4-7 Amos calls out those who are engaged in price fixing, and who exploit the poor for personal gain. In short, God is going to kick their collective asses for taking advantage of the por and using their power for selfish means. Psalm Psalm … [Read more...]

Those People (Heretic’s Guide for Sept 15, 2013)

Those_People

Bible Cliff’s Notes (My dog ate my Bible!) First Reading Jeremiah 4:11-12, 22-28 Jeremiah offers a sire image of a scorching wind that will render everything to ruin. This is not a paring down to separate the good from the bad; rather, everything will be swept away, as it has all gone beyond redemption. and Exodus 32:7-14 God is distraught by the Jewish peoples’ faithlessness, having created a golden calf to worship. God vows to destroy them all, but Moses implores God to offer … [Read more...]

LIVE CHAT Video from Sept 4th talk

Check out my talk with Rev. David Ackerman about this week's lectionary study. … [Read more...]

Stay Green, Christians (Study for September 8, 2013)

green-with-envy

Bible Cliff’s Notes (My dog ate my Bible!) First Reading Jeremiah 18:1-11 Jeremiah witnesses a potter turning a worthless pot into something usable and beautiful. God tells Jeremiah that he can do this and much more with the people of Israel. Basically, no person or nation is beyond the redemption of God. and Deuteronomy 30:15-20 The author of Deuteronomy is warning the people of Israel of what will happen if they stray from God's commandments, which is, of course, precisely what … [Read more...]

When Shall We Meet for LIVE CHATS?

Hi all: I've heard from many folks that, although they'd like to take part in the live chats, the time doesn't really work for them. I thought about setting up a survey, but then folks might be limited to choosing one time that works, rather than multiple times. So instead, I decided I'd just post this and ask folks to respond to it with days and general times that work. Please specify time zone, since we're all over the place. I can also just record a video summary of the study if … [Read more...]