Sunday, October 23

at 8:30 AM and 11 AM

“A Tale of Two Sinners”

Luke 18 : 9 - 14

There have been days that have tempted me to give up on organized religion, to toss off the yoke and burden of ministry, and go hide somewhere.


Yes, you read those words right! Anyone who sits in the office of the clergy constantly experiences the best and the worst that the human race has to offer. We see heroism and hypocrisy, bullying and vulnerability, humility and destructive pride. And when the worst we have to offer gets woven into the fabric of our religious practices, it’s too painful for me to bear.


It’s easy to justify what we do, what we think, how we act. And self-justification, when wrapped in the mantle of religion, always turns deadly. How many strong-willed persons with access to power convinced others that what they wanted was God’s will? For how many centuries did the church of Jesus Christ harbor and protect child predators? And then, even as I write these words, how often have I cast stones at such people, when my own life is far from perfect, when I have done harm?


Perhaps the tax collector in Jesus’ parable is in a place to get it. He’s unclean, selling himself to Rome to steal the wages of his neighbors and citizens. He knows how far he has fallen. So how can Jesus call him justified? If you are fed up with church and hypocrisy -- or just fed up with trying to justify yourself -- then join me… in church…and let Jesus truly justify you! Don’t you desire for Jesus to have mercy on you?


















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