Pentecost 9, 2023

Jesus gets us in some very profound ways. He knows what makes us tick as human beings. That might be nowhere more evident than it is in the Gospel readings for today. He speaks there about a man who finds a treasure, another who finds a pearl, or fisherman who pull up a net full of fish. Is He appealing to our greed? Probably. He knows us, knows what drives us. But He turns all this on its head. The man who finds the treasure is none other than Jesus and you are the treasure. We are the fish in the net. We are the pearl of great price. Instead of appealing to our greed, Jesus has used it as a hook to describe our God and his relationship with us.

I have found something really odd when I have taught and proclaimed these parables. Some people really like the Law and cherish their rather legalistic readings of these passages. They like the idea that Jesus is laying a heavy burden on them – that they must give up everything in their joy to have the kingdom of God. They may even be a little upset at the preacher who has upset such a reading. But I urge you to read this carefully. Jesus is speaking great good news to our people and to you.

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