In displaying its cosmic vision, Psalm 8 invites its readers to participate, in some limited way, in the divine perspective that exceeds our own, in which anthropocentric fantasies are judged and redefined.
When we work towards the eradication of structures that perpetuate poverty in our communities, those that divide us, systems that perpetuate classism or any form of caste system, we each become the light that others see around them. This is also how we embody the glory of God as was experienced by the shepherds in the Lukan narrative.
Jesus is not Joseph’s biological son. Matthew starts his genealogy in the usual patriarchal way, but Jesus does not continue this line. Does this not mean freedom from the patriarchal lineage?
Images of imprisonment appear throughout the Psalter, where the psalmist turns to God as refuge in order to exit the pit of despair. Similar to the life of Omar Ibn Said, and the opera which tells his story, images of shelter and succor help the psalmist escape the abyss of embattlement, imprisonment, or depression, and nurture the attitudes of care, trust, and hope that crest in Psalm 146 and the Hallelujah psalms.
Retelling of a story/text in the Word of God demonstrates the dynamic nature of the event of the God of the word. The God of the Bible is a God who reappears, reveals, re-presents, reimagines and repeats Godself to the creation in God’s own ways to each time and context.
“Christ the King” on the cross offers a way of exposing systemic injustice by hanging in solidarity with victims of a violent system, but refusing to buy into the same violence that sustains it.
The promise of a new world, all memories of suffering erased, seems like a gift. But for
An occasional characterization of the Book of Haggai is that it is self-interestedly supportive of the ascendant Persian Empire. I elaborate on this description and then problematize it by demonstrating that this pericope reveals the prophet to be subversively mimicking the Achaemenid imperial metanarrative.
How do we maintain hope in the face of a seemingly unending time of strife, violence, and conflict? Seek out beauty, depend upon hope…and dance, even in the face of unending war. Hope does not ignore the struggle, nor does it free us from the scars resulting from our struggles. The people of Israel will always carry the scars of their trauma with them; yet, scars also signify survival.
The theo-political impulse of this parable is this: one needs to address the inequality of perceptions that manifest both in society and sacred places.
In the book of Genesis, after the changing of Jacob’s name to Israel, no one calls him by his new name. Instead, the name “Israel” seems to exist as his “true name” and Jacob as his “use name.” “Jacob” is the name that everyone calls him, but he knows that “Israel” is who he really is inside. God has named him “Israel,” and consequently, this will become his legacy.
What makes this moment prophetic is that Elisha forces Naaman to experience what it is to be restricted of free access to every place. Through that restriction, Naaman learns what it means to be vulnerable and realizes how powerless people are pushed into much suffering because of restrictive laws. In the experience of powerlessness, the healing of Naaman begins.