Dana Kramer-Rolls

Sermon on the Mount, the Antitheses: More Rules or Guidelines?

Sermon on the Mount, the Antitheses: More Rules or Guidelines?

“This passage, and probably the whole Sermon, has been used by biblical literalists as a tool of oppression, judgement, and punishment. Is that what Jesus had in mind with all the warnings about being tried before the Council? He, himself, was victim of such literal understanding of the Law.”

Lead Me into Temptation

Lead Me into Temptation

“I think these three temptations are a prophecy of Jesus’ entire ministry. First there is the earthly nourishment – bread, healing, banishing demons. Then there are the challenges by the Temple Authority, which Jesus answers as often as not with a parable turning around the challenge to challenge the challenger. And finally, the true power, the power to accept the word of his Father even unto the Cross.”

And the Lamb was Silent

And the Lamb was Silent

“Isaiah 53, especially verses 4-10, lays bare the prophecy of the Suffering Servant who dies for our sins, who is an innocent to be led like a lamb to the slaughter and in silence. It is from this that commentators have dubbed Jesus’ silence as the Majestic Silence, the fulfillment of prophecy and proof of his status as Son of God.”

Has the Desolating Sacrilege Come Home?

Has the Desolating Sacrilege Come Home?

“Christ gave us all this and yet we are called to follow him into a world of death because his Father’s Kingdom has not yet come, and we are the ones sent out to bring it. Sometimes faith is a hard thing, but we can’t be filled with the presence of our saving God by trivializing evil, pretending spirituality is all rainbows and unicorns. Or by torturing ourselves with the Bad News, when the Good News is so close.”

Jesus, the Fig Tree, and Prayer

Jesus, the Fig Tree, and Prayer

“We need our temples, and we need our priests and pastors, our teachers, our mentors, our scholars. But we need them to guide prayer, not own it. We need our faith communities and our personal practice of our faith to be ever reminded that God is with us, loves us, and will grant us whatever good things we need. But we are also part of the Kingdom, and God’s plan takes precedence over our personal very human personal requests.”

Who is the Stumbling Block?

Who is the Stumbling Block? In the Quarry

“We can be the worst of the stumbling blocks. And if you doubt that, I give you the so call Christian Nationalist movement. Or the harshness of biblical literalist. But even in a less extreme case, in our everyday ministry with our own parish family, we can be petty, judgmental, cruel, forgetting that God is in charge, and preaching humility isn’t just a way to have power over the weak. We are all flawed, and deep down a little afraid, struggling, hungry for God’s love.”

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