Tuesday, April 7, 2009

MITN XVI, Verses 1 - 12

1. Now the relentless Pharisees and Sadducees came up to Jesus, yet again, this time asking Him to show them a sign, or a spectacular miracle from heaven, that would validate His divine authority.

2. He replied to them, “Look...when it’s evening, you have a tradition of saying, ‘We'll have fair weather, because the sky is red’,

3. And in the morning you say, ‘It will be stormy today, because the sky is red, and looks threateningly gloomy’. You obviously know how to interpret the meaning of the sky’s appearance, but you can’t interpret the signs of the times!

4. Only a shallow and clueless generation is wicked enough to constantly crave a sign, but no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah!” And without any commentary, or further explanation, He just left them and went away.

5. When the disciples reached the other side of the lake, they realized that they had forgotten to bring along any bread.

6. During the boat ride, Jesus had said to them, “Be careful, and on your guard against the Pharisee/Sadducee yeast or leaven”,

7. so they reasoned among themselves about it in hushed tones, wrongly assuming that Jesus was annoyed with them for traveling without food supplies.

8. But He, aware of this, asked, “Why are you worriedly whispering among yourselves the fact that you have no bread, and trying to hide it from Me? Honestly, sometimes I’m just amazed at how little faith you men have!

9. How is it possible that you have already forgotten that we literally fed thousands, just the other day, with only five loaves of bread? Don’t you remember gathering up the twelve whole baskets of leftovers after everyone was full?

10. And surely you recall that a little later we also fed another several thousand people with only seven loaves. Can it really be that you don’t remember also gathering baskets of leftovers that day, as well?

11. But even that’s not the issue…my real question is this: How can you, at this point, be so out of touch with what I’m talking about, in general? Why would you even think that I was talking about bread in the first place? How many feeding miracles is it going to take for you to realize that food-supply isn’t the problem? The problem is what’s inside the out-of-touch religious community, which is why I said (and say), beware of the Pharisee/Sadducee yeast!

12. Then, at last, they got it. They understood that He was warning them to not be void of discernment, as the Pharisees and Sadducees were. They finally made the connection that He did not tell them to beware of the leaven of bread, but of the empty teaching of those two misguided religious groups.


"elle" said...

I love this passage :)
You tell 'em, Jesus!
Boy, we're hard-headed sometimes, aren't we?!?

Brenda said...

I really enjoyed reading these verses especially verse 12 where you wrote and then at last they got it. It's something so freeing in knowing you got it. I was in darkness but suddenly the light came on and I got it. I thought I had it going on believing my own press but really I just didn't get it, now at last I got it. We all have our "it" moments and they are worth celebrating. I shall be thinking of this for the rest of the day.

Anonymous said...

It's funny how many times, sometimes many many times we hear the same thing and then finally we see it.

Izumi/JOY said...

First, the pic.

Wow!! Wouldn't it be cool, if it's the Gospel in microcosm, again?

* God's hands
* Sifted flour (Jesus)
* A wooden surface
* The kneading
* The separating
* A reproduction
* A change of form

Also, wouldn't it be awesome, if it was Genesis?

The wooden block could be made from the Tree of Life. There's striation. The dough might be a man, who God's forming with His own hands. The flour might be a living soul.

The block could be the cosmos. The flour, nebulae. The formless earth, the dough.

All too wonderful and I haven't even gotten to the text, yet.

Northern Light said...

Is anyone else having a problem with posting in the prayer W2O3RG room? Since last night.


Northern Light said...

Wrd Ver: sellistr
Sell it Sister !

I think the challenge today is to preach it and teach it......


Northern Light said...

Listening to that "inner voice", believing the HS is telling me to post this here, perhaps a word for someone who needs to see it.

Never allow someone to be your "Priority", while allowing yourself to be their "Option."


gc911 said...

...How can you, at this point, be so out of touch with what I’m talking about... Wow that speaks to me! After everything I have seen of the Lord, how dare I doubt Him? Kind of brings to mind Melvin and the bluenotes," If you don't know me by now...

Izumi/JOY said...

I've read the book of Matthew many times, without really "studying" it. Today, I keep doing the forehead slap, wondering if I'm getting any closer to what really transpired. (discovery part - fun! Achy forehead - less so.)

Before today, I only saw Jesus' response as a retort (maybe true). But, now I wonder if He was openly prophesying His own death and burial in the first 3 verses.

What if this is similar to when He charged Judas to go do what needed to be done, while those at the table misperceived His instructions?

God deals to every man, according to man's measure of faith. The Pharisees and Sadducees had gall. Maybe the Lord's response answered their barrage.

Even though we don't see them as the "good guys", it would seem to contradict Scriptures, (of God being just and a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him) if Jesus ignored their questions. Everything He did had to fulfill the Scriptures.

They sought God for His power - not relationship. But were still (somehow, in a bizarro way) followers of the Lord.

Verse 3's visual transports me to Mark 15:25; the third hour. The time of crucifixion. And when the sixth hour arrived, darkness covered the land.

Yvonne said...

Thanks for answering me on yesterday's blog about the Sunrise Service. It was just such an highlight last year. It was cold but very awesome. I totally understand and look a there, you already have a volunteer for your new stage. That is cool.

Well, Bish, I add my agreement with you that the new stage will be a total blessings and that CITN will have favor with all of the supplies and the volunteers will be in abundance to see this project to fruition.

Our Resurrection Services are so special, I can't wait. Hey Joy and Larry, you two are always so thought-full.

Kind regards,

P Nancy said...

How beautiful is the body of Christ.
I really enjoyed reading this paraphrase today.
This is just another reminder to keep renewing my mind!
To take what we hear and do it!!

Thanks Bishop!

Avatar said...

Amen, P.Nancy.

Verse 1..."the relentless Pharisees and Sadducees..." Yes, they are...whether internal or external.

Verse 4...the sign of Jonah but "without any commentary..." Once again, fishing for anyone who might have ears to hear but moving on. Jesus was so very good at that.

I want to read other paraphrases for the rest of the verses...so, I'll be back after my evening appointment. It is good and pleasant to be reading MITN again--smile!

Izumi/JOY said...

Thank you, Yvonne. I always look forward to MITN translations. Love the way they challenge me to think. So like that Scripture about the honor of kings to search out matters; glorious, concealed God-things.

Son of Zadok said...

And without any commentary, or further explanation, He just left them and went away.

That line is humorous, while also offering me some faith and relief. Sometimes we can want to resolve everything with everyone with alot of talking, reasoning or convincing, maybe even healthy debating. But Jesus justs speaks the truth and thats enough. He just speaks from the life within and lets it work its way into every piece of creation for all the ages. Gods word, Gods plan and way, Gods idea is gowing like wildfire right this second in all of creation and from you. We all sojourn the trails of the heathen and the trials of the religious. And we pray for the religious as we pray for the wanderer. But thanks to God that all these things are working a great and useful purpose in us all. Our deliverer has recognized and remembered us, not only in Egypt, but from Babylon. And every breath you take recollects your own personal commencement and recommendation. We love the Spirit for that. God-N-You, we are made concious to Godlife, we are made concious to Humanity. And the Tree of Life creates an inestimatable prize that simpler treasures would need sending back in search of. Tried by the pain of being so evil and humbled from the appearance of being so good. Because even Jesus said, "How can you even call me good? Only Spirit is good."

Life trancends fallacy.

If their not against us their for us.

If they are not opposing us, they are promoting us.

The other is not counter us, they are us.

And yet if God is even for you, then tell us, WHO can be against

Glory, and Love, and Power to the


Love Yourself, Love God, Love Us

Bask In The Oneness

Son of Zadok said...

Christianity kind of ruined Jesus for me. But Jesus wasn't having it.

Son of Zadok said...

life can ruin many things in someone, but life won't have it.

ver word: culcutio

Makes me think of India

JB said...

No one would believe this unless they were there but today it was snowing where I was and the sun was shining at the same time, talk about the weather and the signs of the times!

Verse eleven is central for me in today's message; "The problem is what’s inside the out-of-touch religious community,". It is common among most of the baby boomer generation that religious tradition is of no effect for the progressive generation that we procreated. It was our word to our children that God is much bigger than we were led to believe.

Among the great teachings of Bishop Jim is the central idea that he is not trying to sell his congregation something they already have. Bishop has laid it out plain and simple that God is our ever present help in any venture of life be it triumph or trouble. Our thoughts and ideas of a great God can not be contained and that gives me joy that can not be measured.

It is not our plight to decide whither we are saved or not because our shepherd is not trying to convince us that we are lost and need to be saved by his particular conditions. We are God's children no matter what our view of Jesus the Christ may be or even what we may choose to call that Diety. That is clear for anyone who loves God and humanity according to the greatest commandments as described by Jesus.

There are many things that could be said of my relationship to Jesus but for me the most important and intimate thing that can be said is that my life is being spent in pursuit of God/Jesus/Holy Ghost being the controlling force in my earth life. The life to come can only be guessed at. It is what we do right now that is being witnessed and recorded. There is no greater evidence than what is presently seen because we are eternally in the the present tense.

It does not matter what we may percieve at any point in what we call time compared to the ultimate Light that can not be consumed by darkness.

Agape to all,

Son of Zadok said...

Yes, we could declare Jesus, Jesus, or say Lord, Lord all day, but is that what Jesus is really about and looking for?
"The Door and Way" is open, but religion ties our trailers to the doorknob and sets up camp below its hinges. Jesus points to the Earth in the Now, and many only marvel at His finger.

Erik said...

This MITN XV1 entry reminds me of the continual dual focus that occupies a large area of entertainment.

The storyline of us being separated from God, and praying and hoping God allows some insight, as if it is blocked, and only great, continued begging will convince God to ‘Let’ us have , or ‘Allow’ us peace. That hopefully it will happen, maybe, before we die.

All the drama. Closing our eyes tight, to keep the movie going. Like the Pharisees. There is clearly a lot of mileage in that view. It is very popular from generation to generation. Kind of like playing cops and robbers, or king of the mountain games, or Shakespeare tragedy, knowing when the curtain closes, the story is over, and out to dinner and drinks. Purposely averting from the discernment we have, to keep the entertainment of destruction going.

Problem is that fear and destruction gets boring quickly. It gets harder and harder to keep the discernment out of every day thought.

The other one is the ‘End of the World’ storyline. (EOW). That one is probably the most popular of all. In Hitchhikers’ Guide to the Universe (the early telecast on BBC especially) you could watch EOW any night as dinner entertainment.

EOW is a big draw, and requires blanking out everything HS tells us every day. Which takes a lot of effort, to shut out the sound and light of life , for what seems little payoff in fear of death. But I guess it is like a roller coaster, the thrill of the perceived danger in the drop, and sharp turns, knowing all the time you are safe.

The comfort of what we discern allows us the diversions and entertainment pretending we have none. But of course we always do have it all the time.

Son of Zadok said...

Go Blue.

Wait, did I just say that.

Oh well.

Goodnight Erik

That was just between us alright.

Northern Light said...

I don't know why it's winter there again, looking at what you twittered, but could you PALEEZE do something to remedy that ? I have enough of that weather here. I'm hoping to come South in a couple weeks.....I would like to be wearing shorts and sleeveless shirts and sandals,and NOT be the fool, doing so. haha

AH........and they call this SPRING ?

word ver: bighister
c'mon people, play this one..


Erik said...


Of Course Bro. Clearly signs and wonders. Maybe it is EOW, who knew?

Avatar said...

So...I've read 8 other paraphrases and in coming back to MITN I enjoy the way it strips away the baggage that the other versions seem to call up for me...in particular here, the "oh ye of little faith" changes to "man, I'm so glad they didn't have a lot of faith then...because I'm allowed to see how Jesus responds to it." instead of my normal "yikes, I don't either, is he mad?"

How does MITN do this? It's a lot of things, but the "honestly" and the "amazed" are important in v. 8"Honestly, sometimes I’m just amazed at how little faith you men have!"

"how is it possible?" in v.9...
"but even that's not the issue" in v. 11

Maybe this is it...the Phars and Sadds don't get the commentary and the explanation, but those who dropped everything and followed Him...they do.

Whatever it is, the Jesus that is revealed in MITN and JITN is human and clearly irresistible.

Anonymous said...

Been busy; I have enjoyed reading everyone's comments, I can totally relate gc911, yes SOZ I too have learned that sometimes you just spit out the truth and walk away while their eyes are still twirling... as always good stuff Eric...

I personally think Jesus gave the disciples a good Ole Arkansas chewin. I mean they were acting like a bunch of guys ate up with the D.A. (initials to keep it family friendly) I mean really, what the heck were they thinking. I am surprised that Jesus didn't say more.

On the flip side of it, it makes me feel better about myself sometimes.....:)


karl cobos said...

Everybody kneads bread!

word ver: cones

karl said...

Thanks for the paraphrase.