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Do This and You Will Live

“I understand that I am to love the Lord with all my heart, and that I’m to love my neighbor as myself, but who is my neighbor?” The lawyer’s question to Jesus from Luke 10 provides the backdrop for the Parable of the Good Samaritan. What does this...
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Doubt and Worship

This week, Faith in Real Life discussed the story of the Great Commission from the book of Matthew. The disciples last encounter with Christ had been the crucifixion and burial. Now, they are instructed by the women who had seen the risen Lord to travel many miles to the top of a...
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Making God’s Story Our Story

The Jews of biblical times internalized their faith in a way that is less common for our Presbyterian tradition today. They knew their history intimately and connected it to their beliefs. The effort this requires began at an early age. This week, Faith in Real Life...
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Hospitable Hearts

Christians commonly view Saul’s conversion on the road to Damascus as the quintessential conversion story. In the face of such drama, how could anyone else’s story measure up? As Vernon’s blog this week highlights, this mode of thinking creates trouble. Apart...
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Impediments to Mutual Love and Hospitality

“Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers…” This message is the crux of this week’s passage from Hebrews. Several ways of showing hospitality to others are listed. It’s not a complete list, but certainly a familiar one. Yet even when...
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Standing for What We Believe

Decatur Presbyterian begins a new theme for the 2017-2018 year this Sunday. Faith in Real Life began exploring “Wide-Open Doors” by discussing the story of Moses and the Burning Bush, from Exodus three. In the story, Moses grapples with the call God places on...
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Finding God

This week, Faith in Real Life discussed the Parable of the Sheep and the Goats from the gospel according to Matthew. In the story, the king separates the sheep from the goats based on who served him by caring for “the least of these.” Interestingly, neither the sheep...
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Ready or Not, the Banquet is What Matters

Ten bridesmaids gather in anticipation of the groom’s arrival. Five bring oil; five do not. The five without oil leave to get it and miss the feast as a result. It’s their own fault for not being prepared, right? The most common interpretation of the story lifts up...
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Invitations & Obligations

The Parable of the Wedding Feast, as told in the gospel of Matthew, calls to mind images of the vengeful God more commonly associated with the Old Testament. As an Easter people, this image doesn’t square with our understanding of God. However, if we peel back the unsavory...
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Right Relationship with God Requires Gratitude

The Parable of the Tenants cuts a hard-edged image of the relationship between the tenants and the land owner. The landowner repeatedly extends grace to a group of tenant farmers, who respond with ungratefulness and greed. If we consider where we may fit in the story, we are...
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