Every adult Christian probably has memories of Easter outfits and eggs hunts from when they were kids, and a list of traditions they carry on with their kids and grandkids. Easter probably involves sunrise service, some special breakfast, new suits or dresses, pictures with family, Easter egg hunts, and so forth. Church choirs perform cantatas and perhaps put on passion plays. We used to go to one in London, KY that was very well done.
And Jesus answered them, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.24 Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.25 Whoever loves his life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life.26 If anyone serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there will my servant be also. If anyone serves me, the Father will honor him. –John 12:23-26
Wednesday April 8th was the first day of Passover for observant Jews. The event we know as the Triumphal Entry occurred when Jesus came into Jerusalem to celebrate Passover for the last time. Ethnic Jews and those practicing Judaism gathered at Jerusalem from all around the Mediterranean world. John 12 records that “some Greeks” came looking for Jesus. The very well known statement “Sir, we wish to see Jesus” is found in verse 21. Philip told Andrew, Andrew and Philip went together and told Jesus. His response is shown above. He talks about bearing fruit, eternal life, following him and being honored by the father. He also talks about, as he had many times before, sowing seeds but in this instance uses what happens to seeds to allude to his crucifixion and burial. The grain of wheat must fall into the earth and die in order to bear fruit. Continue reading →
Hopefully the fire at Notre Dame Cathedral is not news to anyone. I don’t try to cover breaking news and share you heard it hear first stories because many times the first things you hear are wrong. Now that everyone has had a chance to hear and digest the facts, and many people have shared their opinion, I would like to reflect on a few things. Continue reading →
Explaining that his time had come in John 12:24, Jesus said that a grain of wheat could not bear fruit unless it first fell to the ground and died. The crucifixion may be the last stop in our Holy Week journey but for Jesus it was the next step in the process. He Cannot Save Himself is an old favorite of ours on Good Friday. Here are some other bits and pieces you might enjoy. Continue reading →
During certain times of the year I change the cover image of The Master’s Table Facebook page. I switch to the wise men following the star to Bethlehem during Advent and this image of three crosses for Holy Week. I don’t tinker with the banner here for a couple of reasons. One is I’m afraid of messing it up. I know, I know, but I still worry about never getting it to look exactly right again.
There is another reason. Di Vinci’s portrait of The Last Supper is where the idea for The Master’s Table as a title came from. There’s a whole explanation in the About section. That supper took place during Holy Week. It would be totally wrong to take it down this week of all weeks and replace it with something else. That picture is the goal for the Christian life. To eat and drink with the Master, sitting with other followers and listening to his teaching.
Just about every animal has some unique feature that allows it to defend itself from predators. Some have incredible speed, such as deer, while others have sharp claws, powerful muscles or rows of gleaming teeth. Some animals camouflage themselves into the background while the purpose of some camouflage, like that of zebra, make it difficult to distinguish individuals from the group. Even the slow, ungraceful skunk has a very potent defense mechanism. Just about every animal has something, it seems, except sheep. It’s almost as if God intended them to be food for other animals. Sheep are very nearsighted and have to be led to food and water. They cannot drink fast moving water and can actually drown trying. They have to be led to food, led to shelter, and protected from every type of danger. The Bible uses sheep of all things to represent people.Continue reading →
First published in 2001, In Christ Alone has become one of the favorite hymns of all time by several metrics. In Christ Alone is considered a credal hymn expressing faith in the crucified and risen savior.
The song has been recorded and covered many times. The first version below features Adrienne Liesching and Geoff Moore. (I was a big Geoff Moore and the Distance fan back in college but that’s not important right now.) This video displays the brilliant lyrics for your consideration. The second video is a live performance by Keith and Kristyn Getty. Keith Getty and Stuart Townsend are the original co-authors.
UPDATE: It has come to my attention this my second post by this title. This post from 2009 is all about the lyrics with a link to the video. All four verses appear in their entirety with my commentary added afterward.