Tax Season, Miracle Season

Life has its ups and downs. Have you ever returned from a reinvigorating trip to find a tax demand in the waiting mail reminding you it’s tax season? That’s how Peter must have felt when Jesus and His disciples returned from the mount of transfiguration. Tax collectors saw Peter coming. “Does your teacher not pay […]

Bait and Switch?

What’s in it for me? It’s a common question. We are used to a world that pays wages for work and uses rewards to motivate people to excel. A conversation between Jesus and a wealthy young man set Peter questioning along the same lines. In answer to the young man’s inquiry about obtaining eternal life, […]

Prayers of Preparation

My prayer discipline has always been fairly strong, but I have expectations. When those expectations don’t get met, I lose interest. I want answers, outcomes: feelings of His presence, peace, clarity, breakthrough in ministry, changes in the lives and ministries of others. You see, my prayers are quite transactional, even selfish. The pattern causes a […]

Twisted Truth

Would it have happened? Was the devil speaking the truth when he told Jesus that the heavenly Father would send angels to catch Jesus if He jumped off the temple pinnacle (Luke 4:9-12)? Scripture doesn’t lie, right? So when the devil quoted it he was speaking truth, right? Wrong! This temptation twisted truth, applied it […]

Dodgy Reasons

“Why do you call me, “Lord, Lord”, and do not do what I say?” (Luke 6:46) “Sorry, I didn’t catch what you said. I don’t have much time to focus and there’s a lot of background noise right now.” “Frankly, I didn’t grasp the relevance and importance of what you say to my life now […]

The Sign of Jonah

Then some of the scribes and Pharisees answered Him, saying, “Teacher, we want to see a sign from you.” But He answered and said to them, “An evil and adulterous generation craves for a sign; and yet no sign shall be given to it but the sign of Jonah the prophet.” (Matthew 12:38-39. See also […]

What a Waste!

What a Waste! – The Pilferer. The scent was exquisite but almost overwhelming. The occasional, warm evening breeze through the open shutters was quite a relief. Whatever Mary had slavered on Jesus’ feet was clearly top-of-the-line perfume. “Probably cost her a fortune”, thought Judas. “What a waste!” (Matt. 26:8). “Why was this perfume not sold […]

God Goes to Synagogue

[Jesus] went into their synagogue. And a man was there whose hand was withered. And they questioned Jesus, asking, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?”—so that they might accuse Him. And He said to them, “What man is there among you who has a sheep, and if it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will he not take hold of […]

Magic Thinking

Magic is the use of special words or ceremonies in the belief that they produce results. Sadly, magic thinking1 creeps into Christian life sometimes. Jesus rejected it. The crafty suggestion came from Satan. Then the devil took Him into the holy city; and he had Him stand on the pinnacle of the temple and said […]

Jesus Tested

Jesus was still dripping wet from baptism when the Spirit alighted and the Father spoke (Luke 4:1 says He filled Him). Behold, a voice out of the heavens, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well-pleased.” Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the […]