Help support the vision of Woodland Hills Community Church!

Help support the vision of Woodland Hills Community Church!
For those of you who would like to support the vision & ministry of Woodland Hills Community Church (the faith community I serve that continues to encourage me to minister outside the box), please click on the link just above.

Tuesday, June 16

Today’s Readings: Psalm 47; 1 Samuel 14:16-30; John 18:12-18; 2 Corinthians 8:17-24; Psalm 136

One of the many things I find fascinating in the gospels is the variations that occur in the telling of a particular story. For some, the variations might seem minor at first glance – but often those variations are tremendously important. Take today’s passage from the Gospel of John, for example. Each of the four Gospels contains an account of Peter in the courtyard following Jesus’ arrest. Matthew tells his version of the story in Matthew 26:69 ff; Mark tells his in Mark 14:66 ff; and Luke tells his in Luke 22:56 ff. There’s something interesting about these first three accounts. Not one of them bothers to mention how Peter made it into the courtyard. They simply tell us Peter was there. Only today’s passage from John bothers to include an explanation for how Peter made it to the courtyard. John’s passage tells us “the other disciple went out, spoke to the doorkeeper, and got Peter in.” So what significance might such a minor detail provide? Well, there are a couple of possibilities. One might be that John’s telling was an attempt to minimize Peter’s standing in the early Christian community by suggesting Peter needed help to get in. Another explanation might be that John’s telling of the story was an attempt to maximize the role of “the other disciple” (which some have suggested was the infamous Beloved Disciple). As you can see, a detail which some might have considered to be a minor could have a huge impact on how Jesus’ story was played out. Of course the authors of the Gospels weren’t the only ones who shaped the way Jesus’ story is told; every one of us modern folks shape Jesus’ story in the way we tell it as well. Today, I would invite you to think about the way you tell Jesus’ story. As you think about your telling, pay special attention to the details you include. It is those very details that set your account apart from others. Through a careful examination of those details, you might arrive at a deeper understanding of what theologically matters most to you in Jesus’ story. Til next time…

No comments: