Whom do you serve?

Romans 6:12-23     In the old days, before free agency existed for professional athletes, a player would sign a contract with a team, and then would be bound to that team and its owners.  Sometimes the owners traded them to another team, but the player really had no say in it.  Their only real choices were to sign a contract to play or to retire.  There was no shopping around and looking for a better position.  You might not call it slavery, as even then, professional athletes were well paid.  But it was a form of slavery in the sense that the apostle Paul describes slavery in his letter to the first century Roman Christians, which is the condition of a person being controlled by someone else (or perhaps something or some system).

Paul lived in a time when possibly about 1/3 of the population was enslaved.  Continue reading “Whom do you serve?”

How Shall I Send Thee?

Children, go where I send thee. How shall I send thee? I’m gonna send thee one by one, one for the itty bitty baby, born, born, born in Bethlehem. The African American spiritual starts out like this and then counts all the way up to 12, mentioning Paul and Silas, the three kings, the four gospel writers, and so on, up to the 10 commandments and finally the 12 apostles. Every verse is a call to the children: go where I send thee. How shall I send thee? I’m gonna send thee two by two…. It is a teaching song, and it comes to mind when I hear Jesus’ commission to the apostles in Matthew’s gospel.
Jesus is sending them out into the world to carry on his mission, giving them authority to be his hands and feet in the world. Continue reading “How Shall I Send Thee?”