The Presentation of Jesus (Luke 2)

The lectionary reading for Sunday is Luke 2.20–40 as we celebrate the Presentation of Jesus in the temple in Jerusalem. If you are following Luke in the lectionary, this will feel slightly odd; last week we heard about the beginning of Jesus’ teaching ministry in the synagogue in Nazareth, and have already reflected on the … Continue Reading

Reading the Benedictus with the Magnificat

For those following the Revised Common Lectionary, this year will allow us to focus on Luke’s gospel. It is often claimed that Luke emphasises the gospel for the poor, or that he focusses on women and their roles, in particular the contribution of the wealthy women in Luke 8.1 who contribute to the financial underwriting … Continue Reading

Three Christmas Surprises

Christmas is a time for celebration, for feasting and for relationships. But it is also a time for a mild engagement in iconoclasm, as we peel back the layers of accreted tradition and recover the origins of the Christmas gospel. In that spirit (and Spirit) I offer three Christmas surprises for you to unwrap at … Continue Reading

What are the ‘new wineskins’?

In all three Synoptic gospels, Jesus concludes a conversation about the contrast between his teaching and practice and that of the Pharisees (and John the Baptist) by means of a parable about wine and wineskins. No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch will pull away from the … Continue Reading