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Homily for the sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost - Being taught to teach

Updated: Sep 7, 2021

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Good morning bus riders!


I hope the past week has found everyone happy. I sent out the email with the link to the lectionary page; so, I hope everyone got to read all the readings possible for today. There is an extra one in there this week.


Remember, I talk about them all here, not just a few or only part of one. They are all important to know about; otherwise, why read them if not? Right?


We begin with a reading from Proverbs 7, which talks about wisdom as a goddess.


That is accompanied by Psalm 19, which sings praise about marriage of a soul to Yahweh and all the benefits of that union.


But, that might be overlooked, so a reading from Wisdom of Solomon 7 can be read instead. That tells of the nature of wisdom, comparing it to the moon, making Yahweh be comparable to the sun.


The alternative Old Testament reading comes from Isaiah 50, which he wrote after the people of Jerusalem were in captivity in Babylon. Isaiah sang praise that all hope was not lost, because Yahweh brings the tongue of a teacher with the ear of servitude.


Accompanying that is Psalm 116, where David sang praise for the blessing that is the redemption and salvation of a soul; again, this comes from a soul’s commitment in divine marriage to Yahweh.


The Epistle is again from James, where he spoke about being teachers. He told of mouths that speak poison if not controlled. So, he used the metaphor of a bridle and a rudder as necessary controlling additions.


Then, the Gospel is from Mark, where Jesus jumped all over Peter, telling his followers they either needed to be like him or hit the road to somewhere else.


In the grouping of all these readings together, the central theme – or the ‘silver thread’ – that connects them all is one that places focus on the duality of service to God Almighty.


By that, I mean there are two basic types of people in the world: those who worship Yahweh, the One God; and, there are those who don’t. Of that duality, today’s lessons focus only on those who say they serve Yahweh.


By that, I mean Christians worship God and Jesus. The rest of the world does not. Within the realm of Christianity is a duality that can be termed: the educated and the simple. All still say they worship the same religion, only differently.


For instance, Solomon was the King of Israel, which means he was the leader of all the people who knew Yahweh by that name. Solomon led the children of God who had been led by Moses to receive the Promised Land. Therefore, Solomon represents one whose writings – Proverbs and his Wisdom – were taken in by the people of Israel as the word of Yahweh, through their leader. Those were the educated.


Then, there is David, whose songs routinely are part of every Sunday’s readings. David was also a King of Israel, the father of Solomon. Still, there is the duality theme of today, as the Psalms of David sing the truth of Yahweh through a marriage partner – a soul committed to serve Yahweh – which is the opposite of Solomon. Those are the simple, who bow down in trust.


Isaiah must be seen as a prophet that was also a ‘wife’ of Yahweh, who symbolizes one sent by Yahweh to the wayward Jews in captivity. Thus, Isaiah reflects the duality of those who have deep faith in Yahweh, as opposed to those whose beliefs in Him led them astray, making them victims of the predators in the world who do not know Yahweh.


Jesus reflects one of absolute faith in Yahweh, with all the Jews of Judea and Galilee being led by leaders of the Temple, who were those with absolute faith in themselves, using Yahweh as a means to obtain success in their little world. The followers of Jesus reflect the duality within the Jews, where all knew Yahweh was their God, but they needed more from those who taught them.


James then is one in the line of David, Isaiah, and Jesus, who firmly held faith in Yahweh; but he spoke to Jews that were still caught between the rock and the hard place, one which was knowing the Laws of Moses, but being clueless in how to live a life that was adherent to those rules.


This means the duality spoken of in today’s lessons is the simple of faith verses the educated of belief.


In Proverbs 1, we read theses verses:


How long, O simple ones, will you love being simple?

For waywardness kills the simple, and the complacency of fools destroys them.


In Psalm 19, where the translation reads: “The law of Yahweh is perfect and revives the soul; the testimony of Yahweh is sure and gives wisdom to the innocent.” [My restorations of “Yahweh.”].


The reality is the place where the word has been translated as “innocent,” it can equally be translated as “simple.” The same Hebrew root word is used by both David and Solomon.


Then, that is also the case in Psalm 116, where we read: “Yahweh watches over the innocent; I was brought very low, and he helped me.” [Once more, my restoration of the name written – “Yahweh.”] The verse can equally say, “Yahweh watches over the simple.”


Can you see the dual focus that is placed on “the simple,” when Solomon and David both proclaim belief in Yahweh, but Solomon belittled “the simple” and David says Yahweh helps them?


Now, this same duality can be seen when Solomon routinely refers to “wisdom” in the feminine:


At the busiest corner she cries out; at the entrance of the city gates she speaks.

(Proverbs 1)

Although she is but one, she can do all things, and while remaining in herself, she

renews all things;

She is more beautiful than the sun,

Compared with the light she is found to be superior,

She reaches mightily from one end of the earth to the other, and she orders all things

well. (All from Wisdom of Solomon, 7 and 8.)


In chapter seven of the Wisdom, Solomon clearly paints a picture that equates the Moon – the goddess Luna or Selene – with the Sun – the god Apollo or Helios. That is accepting polytheism as normal, from an educated perspective.


In the Wisdom, Solomon wrote what appears to be an abbreviation that has been translated as “God” – inferring Yahweh, some think. But the truth of that word is it could just as easily be a word Solomon made up or 'coined,' to mean “gods,” from a polytheistic point of view.


How else can the King of Israel write of his love of a goddess? In his eighth chapter of the Book of Wisdom, he calls “wisdom” his bride.


David, on the other hand, speaks more metaphorically about the need for a soul to marry Yahweh, becoming His bride.


Can you see this duality in those texts?


<Look for nodding heads.>


Good.


When Isaiah’s song begins by singing, “adonay Yahweh has given me the tongue of a teacher,” his use of “adonay” must be seen in the same light as wherever the word “elohim” is written. The word “adonay” is the plural form of “adon,” such that it means “lords.” By his saying the “lords of Yahweh,” Isaiah is saying (in effect), “Because I am one of the gods created by Yahweh,” which is a statement about his soul’s divine marriage to Yahweh.


When Solomon wrote about marrying a goddess, such that he claimed “wisdom” was feminine, he was giving praise to his being one of the “adonay” of something lesser than Yahweh. By claiming “wisdom” to be his bride, he was in effect saying that his soul was the bride of Satan. That was the lesson of Solomon wishing for knowledge of good and evil, which is what the serpent suggested to ‘Eve’: If you eat that fruit, then you will become an “elohim” like Yahweh. [Genesis 3:5]


In that story, it is important to realize that both Adam and Eve [Man and wife] were “simple.” It was the serpent’s promise of them becoming like gods [“kê·lō·hîm”], from marrying “wisdom” [the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil] that got the two “simple” creatures kicked out of Eden.


This becomes the duality of which James wrote, which all begins by him saying, “Not many of you should become teachers … for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness.”


Isaiah knew that strictness, when he wrote, “adonay Yahweh has given me the tongue of a teacher.” That was not a gift from "the Lord God," it was a gift that came from subservience to Yahweh, so Isaiah's soul became one of His adonay and then possess the knowledge of Yahweh as a teacher. Isaiah knew his submission of self, in service to Yahweh – as one of His wives – meant he had to remain simpleminded, in order to teach the Word of God.


That is why Isaiah said he was given “the tongue of a teacher, that I may know how to sustain the weary with a word.” The “weary” were those whose nation had fallen into utter ruin. That ruin had come upon the people who thought they were God’s gift to humanity, only to find the humiliation of realizing they were slaves to dominators.


Rather than be slaves to Yahweh – as His adonay – they became the masters of themselves, only to find out that didn't work out too well.


It was Solomon who began teaching the Israelites how to turn away from Yahweh, their God, and begin to worship lesser gods of the world. Solomon, then in comparison, was like the serpent telling ‘Eve’ how great she could be … if she just broke one little rule and ate the forbidden fruit.


Just like Adam and Eve found out about eviction from Eden, the whole that was Israel when Solomon took the reins, was totally kicked out of their valuable property … in a trail of tears.


Thus, a word to the weary was Yahweh saying through one who did not reject holy matrimony with Him, “There is still hope for redemption and salvation.”


After all, the true “Promised Land” is eternal life for a soul in heaven. Being let back into Eden is the promise that Yahweh offers. Therefore, His teachers speak of being simpleminded, not all full of oneself.


Now, James was an Apostle, which means his soul was married to Yahweh, through his receipt of the Spirit. James was one of the “elohim Yahweh,” or another of the “adonay” Isaiah wrote of.


James was not sent into ministry by Yahweh, to serve Gentiles. He was only directed to expand the presence of Yahweh in the lost souls who were Jews. When one remembers that, one needs to realize how “teacher” was what the disciples called Jesus.


In John we read how Mary exclaimed at the opened tomb (to the ‘gardener’), “Rabboni!” That is thought to be Aramaic, more than Greek, meaning “my master, my teacher.” Also in John, not to long ago we read, how some of those who were fed bread and fish on the flood plain of the Sea of Galilee later followed Jesus to Capernaum, calling him, “Rabbi.” The word John wrote is more Hebrew than Greek, but accepted to also mean “my master, my teacher.”


The Hebrew root, “rhabbi” literally means “great in number,” which is relative to great many facts that come from Scripture, which only the smart Jews could spend time dwelling on and figuring out.


This past week I found out that the term “rabbi” did not begin until the first century A.D. [or C.E.], which was when Jesus walked in ministry. Still, the term meaning “great in number” was relative to ancient times, when the “father” was naturally the “teacher.” I saw how that knowledge applies to titles used in Christian denominations, where calling one “father” is not making one be equal to God. Instead, it is simply a title that says “teacher” of Christian theology.


The root of the Hebrew word “rav,” meaning “many,” is said to stem from the Biblical command to “be fruitful and multiply,” where the father and the mother bring forth children. It was then the role of the father to teach the children the way of righteousness, as descendants of the Sons of man. As far as discipline goes, a father is always stricter than the mother, which is a reference James made about "teachers."


James wrote the Greek word “didaskaloi,” which means “instructors,” or “teachers, masters,” which has the same meaning as “rabbi.” Isaiah wrote the word “limmud,” which has been translated as “teacher,” but actually means “taught.”


This then points out how being “taught” is essential, if one is to then “teach.” This brings out the objective of teaching, where that taught must later be applied in life. It is the reason fathers teach their children, so they too can become fathers teaching their children, having been properly taught.


This is where Isaiah saying it was Yahweh who “taught” him means he was qualified to then “know how to speak to the weary.”


This has to be seen as what James meant when he wrote, “Not many of you should become teachers … for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness.” He was saying Yahweh – the Father – has to be the teacher, before one can begin to teach the meaning of Scripture to others.


One can assume that Jesse took on the role of “teacher” when he raised David, which led David to be devoted to his God. Once David became a king, he might have played the same role teaching Solomon; but neither Jesse nor David (by that time in his life, having greatly sinned) can be assumed to be the “teacher” James had, nor the “teacher” Isaiah had.


This is that duality of faith and belief. One is a teacher taught by the Father; and, the other is a teacher taught by the father. One comes with stricter controls, the other not so much.


In the Apocryphal book “The Infancy Gospel of Thomas,” Joseph hired “teachers” to try to bring little Jesus into line, so he would learn the ways of the Jews. One teacher tried to discipline Jesus and somehow that teacher dropped dead. A replacement teacher tried to teach little Jesus the letters of the alphabet, but Jesus began asking the teacher to explain why the first letter was shaped as it was and why it was the first letter, called "aleph." That teacher quit, because he said Jesus knew more than he did.


Young Jesus was taught by the Father from birth. He could not be taught by lesser fathers.


When one sees how Solomon was also an impish child, with a strong will like that displayed by young Jesus, it is possible to see how Solomon had an advanced I.Q. at a young age. Learning basic things was too slow and too simple for his big brain. Thus, he refused to hear the voice of Yahweh asking him what he deserved (as punishment), saying he thought he should know good from evil. That meant Solomon turned away from Yahweh and began negotiating with Satan. Therefore, Satan was the one who “taught” young Solomon to desire the knowledge of the world and grow so he would take “wisdom” as his bride.


That makes Solomon the prototype for bad teachers, as far as those who James said would be held to “greater strictness.” James was calling for more good teachers, those who would be “taught” by Yahweh.


James wrote, “For all of us make many mistakes. Anyone who makes no mistakes in speaking is perfect, able to keep the whole body in check with a bridle.” That says, “To err is human.” However, it also says that James had the benefit all good teachers must have, which is the “bridle” that was Yahweh’s Son resurrected within his soul – Jesus.


Rather than wander aimlessly in life, being Jesus reborn gave one the tongue of a teacher, as the resurrection in the flesh of one taught by the Father. The addition of Jesus' soul with one's own soul was like putting a rudder on a boat. One could teach with purpose and direction.


When Jesus walked in ministry, he regularly faced bad teachers, who were the Pharisees, Sadducees, scribes, synagogue rabbis, and the Sanhedrin – the elite of the Temple. The ministry of Jesus included teaching them how bad they were at teaching.


James was referring to the same Jews, as the advent of Christianity meant continuing to teach the children the Father had sent the Son to teach. James was likewise a Jew like the many – those who were descendants of those who had faith in Yahweh, so a race [a nation of people] could continue being “Israelites” – or those who retain God.


To retain God, they had to be taught by the Father. The Apostles were the multiplication of Jesus in the world, given the tongue to do that; and, James was directed to serve the children of Jacob, to teach them become children of Israel.


When James pointed out “the tongue is a fire,” this should be realized as the same “tongue” given Isaiah, while also remembering how Acts 2:3 says, “Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them.” James was then saying that the “tongue of a teacher,” as Isaiah said “the tongue of one taught,” means having the ability to transform listeners, by touching their hearts and souls.


James saying “no one can tame the tongue-- a restless evil, full of deadly poison” relates back to his saying “all of us make many mistakes.” This means James was referring to the Jewish teachers [rabbis] who still did nothing towards setting the hearts and souls of Jews on fire for Yahweh. Rather than enhancing their religion, they were killing it.


Poison is a deadly weapon. Loose lips sink ships.


Solomon was the one whose ‘insight’ about the worship of goddess Wisdom, such that he belittled the “simple” as the “fools [who] hate knowledge,” said “the complacency of fools destroys them.”


In the wisdom that says, “Hindsight is 20/20,” that says everyone who followed Solomon’s lead and marched to Babylon as a Judean slave was a “fool,” because their complacency in devotion to Yahweh led them to be utterly “destroyed.”


If only Solomon had foreseen that and taught that lesson.


When the Apostles were the “teachers,” as wives of Yahweh reborn as His Son Jesus, their tongues taught the truth. Christianity took hold and spread like wildfire.


The Roman emperor Constantine saw the power of Saints and wanted to organize it, with Rome eventually becoming the capital of a new empire. That transformation began to put out the flames coming from the tongues of true teachers who had been taught from the Master.


By the time the sixteenth century rolled around, the goddess wisdom had been free to whisper into the ears of people who began to question their religious overlords. The Renaissance – a French word meaning “Rebirth” – came; and, the Age of Reason was born. Science became the Solomon of that age.


This is where it needs to be understood what James meant, when he wrote “From the same mouth come blessing and cursing.” It is important to know why he added the questions, “Does a spring pour forth from the same opening both fresh and brackish water? Can a fig tree yield olives, or a grapevine figs?”


That says the duality of simple and wise is the lesson of serving two masters. Jesus said that cannot be done. [Matthew 6:24]


When Jesus was at the well having a conversation with a Samaritan woman, he said, “If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.” He was not insinuating the well (a source of fresh water) could yield “living water.”


The “teachers” that would be more greatly restricted in what they could teach – like Jesus and an Apostle as Jesus reborn – could only “give living waters.”


The Jews, of whom James wrote a warning, were not even wells of knowledge supplying drinkable water. The spiritual water they served up was either salt water or brackish water.


With the advent of the Age of Reason, when more and more are now planning on making wisdom their bride, having thrown Christianity out like dirty bath water, go into any church today and listen to a sermon. You will hear brackish water (at best) being served in sips. Whenever leaders of churches venture onto the political platform stage, everything offered is then pure salt water.


The fruit of the vine that is Scripture comes from the tree of life. It is impossible to get the fruit of truth from the other tree, where politics and social agendas are the fruit of knowledge, with good and evil being what keeps one from simple obedience and compliance from love.


Brackish sermons spew from the mouths of those who are cursed by Satan. It rolls off tongues that are born of “a restless evil, full of deadly poison.” It certainly does not come from Yahweh or His Son resurrected in that flesh. One does not want to spit out the truth, which always tastes sweet and pure. The truth never changes; it is the living waters Jesus spoke of.


This makes the Gospel reading from Mark vital to fully understand. It is a well-known reading, but few are able to preach the truth about what Mark said. Therefore, Christianity languishes in the same miserable state as did Judaism, when this event occurred.


Because Christianity has reverted to be just like Judaism was then, when Jesus asked his disciples, “Who do people say that I am?” Jesus is asking all who proclaim to be Christians today the same question.


Who do you say Jesus is?


<Look at puzzled faces.>


When the disciples said, “John the Baptist” and “Elijah” and “one of the prophets,” all those answers were saying, “They think you are a man of flesh and blood who is one of a kind, and irreplaceable.”


After all, John the Baptist was who Peter and Andrew followed, before Jesus. That says Jesus had charisma.


Elijah was the greatest of all prophets of Israel, who never died and was expected to return some day. So, saying Elijah was like the expectation of someone whose flesh never got old and died.


To say “one of the prophets” was a way of knowing the history of the Israelites and knowing Yahweh periodically would send some one of a kind guy … to special people, in order to guide the people back to adherence to the Law. The prophets, however, were only sent to the V.I.P.s and unheeded, for the most part.


The answer I think many Christians would give today would be, “God. Jesus is God incarnate." So, to say ‘Jesus’ is to say ‘God,” without ever having to learn the name ‘Yahweh.’”


When Jesus heard those answers, you have to realize that none of them are right, because being half-right is like a mouth spewing forth ‘brackish water’ not fresh, "living water." That means most Christians would do the same. Jesus is not God incarnate, or Jesus would not refer to Yahweh as “Father.”


Remembering that “father” is the meaning of a “rabbi” or “teacher,” that needs to ring a bell that says, Jesus is a teacher being taught by the "Father.” Jesus in the flesh was an adonay of Yahweh, same as Isaiah.


Because Jesus knew all his disciples were wrong, when asked who the people thought he was, when Jesus asked them, “Who do you say that I am?” you need to hear a collective “gulp.” That is because the disciples thought exactly like “the people.” The answers they gave stated who they thought Jesus was.


This is where the written text of Scripture is not like a Hollywood television movie or sitcom script, where there are asides that tell the actors what to do between saying their lines. After Jesus asked his disciples that question, you need to imagine a long, pregnant pause. You should get to the point of anticipating Jesus adding, “I’m waiting” or “Maybe you didn’t hear me,” before the next word of Mark's text is read.


All of the disciples were feeling guilty for having followed Jesus and given answers that said they were all still just like “the people.” By naming special people, they were like special themselves, from just being close to a superstar. That guilt left them speechless.


Then the Spirit moved into Peter, causing him to blurt out, “You are the Christ.” The Greek text of Mark shows, “Sy ei ho Christos.” So, the Greek word written ["the Christ"] means the same as the Hebrew “mashiach” ["the Messiah"]: “Anointed one.”


Now, I want you all to think for a minute about what Peter said.


The obvious answer than nobody gave before, when asked, “Who do the people think I am?” is “Jesus of Nazareth.” Nobody said, “Jesus,” the name given to Jesus before he was born, told to Mary by Gabriel, a name that means “Yahweh Will Save.”


Nobody said that.


The Spirit moved Peter to say exactly what most Christians today would say: “You are the Christ.”


People today say that routinely. They say it like the last name of Jesus is “Christ.” They say if without knowing “Christ” is Greek for “Anointed one.”


To say Jesus is the “Christ” is like saying, “Jesus is God. You know, Jesus Christ. The one and only.”


Now, when Peter said, “You are the Anointed one,” Peter knew what the Hebrew word “mashiach” meant.


In 1 Samuel 16:12-13, the Hebrew text says, “Yahweh told Samuel to “mashach” David," as the one of Jesse's sons He chose. Then we read that Samuel “mashiach” David with oil from a horn. So, David was an anointed one by Samuel - a prophet and judge of Israel. Still, David was an Anointed one of Yahweh, because verse 13 adds, “and came the Spirit of Yahweh upon David from that day forward.”


If 1 Samuel were to be written in Greek, it would say David was Christ.


To think Yahweh can only Anoint one human being is then playing like Solomon and being married to the goddess Wisdom. From a high and mighty position of 'most wise', Solomon would say Yahweh is some peon god. Solomon would then determine who and how many souls of human beings Yahweh can Anoint.


Christians today, being taught by the tools employed by the Age of Reason, quickly forget all of the Old Testament [it is Jewish, after all] and think Yahweh is so old and weak that He can only Anoint one soul, which He did two thousand years ago, with none since. Therefore, Wisdom tells us Jesus is the one.


Because Peter blurted out something he did not understand – although it was absolutely the truth – Jesus then “sternly ordered them not to tell anyone.”


It becomes important to realize that mouths of human beings make lots of mistakes, like thinking “Jesus Christ” is the name of God. Therefore, it is best they just keep their mouths closed. They need a bridle. They need a rudder placed on their brains.


Okay, raise your hand if you have ever been sternly told by your father not to talk about something.


<Look for raised hands.>


You have to see Jesus teaching his ‘little children’ like a ‘father’ would. Being firm does not mean a father hates his children. That is how one needs to see this next part, when Jesus “began to teach them that the Son of man must undergo great suffering, and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.”


I want you to think about those words. Hear them as if Jesus were a father telling his little children WHY they should not tell anyone who Jesus is. They should especially not tell anyone “Jesus is the Christ,” because Jesus is going to suffer, be rejected, die, and resurrect.


Because the father had just dressed down his children as a way of saying it was important not to talk about things they did not know, the father was then assuaging some tender feelings by explaining why he spoke sternly to them.


Raise you hand if your father ever did something similar to you - something like, "I know you don't understand all this now, but believe me when I say that it will make complete sense to you later in life, when you grow up."


<Look for raised hands.>


Well, after explaining this, I imagine without tears running down from his eyes or his body shaking like a leaf, one could expect the disciples to take a sigh of relief and be at ease. However, it was in that calm that Peter was overcome, once again.


After having momentarily been possessed by Yahweh and made capable of giving an answer that not even he knew was coming, Peter was again possessed. This time it wasn’t so good.


We read, “Peter took [Jesus] aside and began to rebuke him.”


Raise your hand if you ever got a failing grade on a test and saw it as the result of bad teaching, so the F was all the teacher’s fault. Raise your hand if you asked him or her out into the hall, to tell them what you thought.


<Look for shaking heads.>


Well, that was what happened then. Just like Peter had been the star student one moment, he became the class know-it-all the next.


When we read Jesus say, “Get behind me, Satan!” do you think that was just Jesus calling Peter names? Or, do you think Jesus only spoke the truth; so, his calling Peter Satan was a clear statement that Peter had been demonically possessed?


<Look at shocked faces.>


When Jesus then said to Peter, “You are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things,” that says before Peter’s mind had been set on divine things. Yahweh entered his mind and told him to say, “You are the Christ.” Now, Satan had been tapped on the shoulder by Yahweh, saying, “Your turn.” So, Satan had fun and made Peter act like a fool.


Jesus was not commanding Peter, as Peter was just an unassigned soul, not yet a complete elohim of Yahweh. Jesus was commanding Satan to stay away from his child, because his soul belonged to Yahweh, and then become the flesh of Jesus reborn.


Here is when you recall how Solomon was telling everyone to set their minds on wisdom things and rebuke everyone who acted simple minded. Peter acted like he had some wisdom that just needed to spew out of his mouth, like some salty water.


After Jesus and Yahweh set this whole show up, to make a vivid point, Jesus called out to everyone who was part of the Jesus road experience. He told them all the famous (for Christians) line: “If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.”


When he said “followers” he knew everyone then (just like most everyone now in modern times) was a groupie of Jesus. That made everyone there little more than the people in the towns where the show entered – the people who came were thought of as fans of a superstar. The people, like all those there, loved being close to Jesus … but not a one of them thought he or she would ever be able to keep the show on the road, if Jesus were to die … even if they had a clue what “after three days rise again” meant.


Few teachers today dwell on the part of that famous quote that says, "let them deny themselves." A "self" is a soul. To deny one's soul means to sacrifice it so Jesus' soul can come in. When Peter spoke the truth, he "denied himself" and Yahweh took control. Likewise, when Peter rebuked Jesus, he spoke like a bad teacher, having denied his soul, allowing Satan to speak through his mouth.


To deny oneself means to change the way you are.


Raise your hands if you – males and females – see your father in you.


<Look for raised hands.>


Raise your hands if you graduated from some school and then later reached some point in life when something a teacher told you long before came back to you, as pertinent to that moment. Like an ‘aha moment’ of remembrance.


<Look for raised hands.>


The point of fathers teaching their children and the point of teachers in general teaching children is to prepare selves to teach others. That is the meaning of Jesus saying “follow me.”


It certainly was not meant as being a fan of Jesus, forever sitting in a pew listening to things Jesus said, with none of them ever leading one to “grow up” and stop being a child. When one grows up, one denies the child and become the father; one denies the student and becomes the teacher.


Probably the least preached lesson of this reading from Mark is Jesus saying, “Those who are ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of them the Son of man will also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”


You cannot be a child forever. You cannot be a student forever. In order to be a follower, you have to be “taught” and then you have to “teach.”


The ones who follow the Solomon recommendation and marry the goddess Wisdom are the ones who wear robes and pass out wafers today. They had someone (if not themselves or their parents) pay a lot of money for them to get diplomas and advanced degrees, in order to get hired as a priest, pastor, or minister. Still, with all that education, none of them are churning out Saints these days.


That speaks for the education they received. They laugh at the simple minds and the fools that have no desire to be up on the altar with them.


They are why James warned, “Not many of you should become teachers.”


Instead, they are fans of “Jesus Christ,” none of them caring to call their God “Yahweh.”


They are going against Jesus’ stern instruction not to tell anyone who Jesus is. Pointing to Jesus as the man who lived in the past, telling everyone who listens, "Jesus is the Christ," is saying, "I am not Jesus. I am not the Christ reborn."


That is a tongue speaking that has not been taught to give a word to the weary. That is a mouth that has no bridle that has denied itself, so Yahweh can speak through it.


To follow in those footsteps as a true teacher of truth, one has to be Jesus reborn; and, for that to be possible, Jesus had to die and resurrect in those whose souls have married his Father.


The bus is arriving now. So, I’ll stop.


Please think about what I have said this coming week.


I wish everyone a productive week ahead.


Amen

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