In this episode, Rev. Beverly Gibson and Johnny Gwin continue to discuss the issue of the nature (and confusion) of Jesus as both human and divine. Using Matthew’s gospel of the account of the Pharisee’s Lawyer trying to trap Jesus with the question of “What is the greatest commandment,” Rev. Gibson reveals that there is more to the greatest commandments. Jesus answered “loving God with all your heart, soul and mind” is the greatest commandment but he also added a second part to his answer, the “Golden Rule.” Loving your neighbor as yourself is the coat hanger in which all the rules and laws of God is shaped and formed. Is understanding the letter and the spirit of the “Golden Rule” the lynchpin that connects all the lessons, laws, and ideas in Christianity? What would the world be like if more of us asked the question “Am I being loving” in all of our deeds and relationships?
In our present cultural moment, we have gone beyond uncomfortable silence with discourse. We have been actively resistant and hostile to silence and have been moved straight to outright rage and protest when we hear things that trigger internal opposition to ideas and theories. Thinking needs the head and the heart. When we quit listening to someone because they don’t “see things like us” we might be doing ourselves a disservice to understanding something more or in a deeper way. Jesus had a way of using “silence” in his teachings. Not only is there wisdom and faith in his words but also in his “between the lines” delivery if his messages. Jesus left his detractors silenced when he was challenged. He gave those that wanted to destroy him the time and respect to at least hear them out, and then after a pause of powerful silence lovingly gave them the chance to hear and absorb the truth that he was freely teaching to everyone to turn people toward God.
Takeaway: This week “Just Give 5 Minutes” to prayer, yourself and your neighbors. Especially those neighbors that think and see our world much different than you.
What is discussed:
> Silence in the Gospel lessons from Sunday Oct.29th, 2017
> The last gospel story of the Pharisee’s traps for Jesus in Matthew
> The lessons in Jesus’s silence
> The greatest commandments
> Jesus as the teacher and the Rabbi whose aim is to turn people to God
> How To Think – Alan Jacobs and his story of Freid
> Give it 5 minutes to let something that offends or triggers you – step back and listen and learn
> Thinking takes the heart and head
> When we do not listen we lose the heart of a conversation or issue
> Jesus’s two answers go to the basic affirmation of Jewish belief, and everything is shaped and formed from this greatest commandment and “Golden” rule
> It’s the guide for interpreting all the other rules with love being our guiding principle
> Am I being loving?
> Margaret Louise Collins baptism and the 5th baptismal covenant
> Striving for justice and peace – maybe being quiet would be a good first step
> The Pharisee’s Lawyer vs. Jesus
> The confusion of Jesus’s question of “Who is the Messiah to you?”
> Again the issue of the nature of our understanding (or misunderstanding) of Jesus as human and divine
> There is the love of God and it is carried out with how we deal and have relationships with each other
> What is the nature of love?
> Who is our “neighbors.”
> The many Greek words for “love.”
> Defining the basic understanding of “neighbor” can be a tool for exclusion and a barrier for people who are different or do not look like us
> The King’s Wedding Feast leads Johnny to believe that all people should be initially considered our “neighbors.”
> Alan Jacobs has said that we need to spend time with people that hold and share opposing views – not to debate them but to learn from them
> Strive to achieve and participate in fruitful silence
> The gift of C-SPAN and secret of certain babysitters
> The Golden Rule as the rule for all the other laws
> Understand the letter and the spirit of the law
> Preventing the distortion of the law by using the Golden Rule
> The many mentions of the Golden Rule in the Bible in other books
> The Golden Rule is given to us by God to create a loving and responsible community
> The Golden Rule is the hanger all laws hang on and the Unifying Theory of A Christianity
> God made us and all creation for love
> Love for Him and for us to share it with each other
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Pulpit to Pew, a podcast that features a conversation between priest and parishioner, to understand how the message translates and to further explore the weekly lessons within the Episcopal tradition and daily life.