Monthly Archives: July 2014

John in July: Risen Jesus as Rainbow Body (Jn 20)

I recently received a book called The Rainbow Book from its author F. Lanier Graham, who signed it and wrote, “For Daniel who sees the Light beyond color.” There is a lot one can say about F. Lanier Graham, but … Continue reading

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John in July: Jesus Receives the Hyssop (Jn 18:28-19:42)

“They put a sponge full of the wine on a branch of hyssop and held it to his mouth. And Jesus received the wine.” (John 19:30) My favorite sacred site in the Holy Land and perhaps in the world is … Continue reading

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John in July: Prayer and Unity in the Holy of Holies (Jn 17)

The Gospel of John emphasizes a realized eschatology more than the Synoptic Gospels, which describe more of a future eschatology. In other words, eternal life (ἡ αἰώνιος ζωή) in the Fourth Gospel is not just something we enter into when … Continue reading

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John in July: The Joy of Being Wrong about God (Jn 16)

The time is coming when anyone who kills you will think they are offering a service to God (16:2) In this verse, Jesus describes sacred violence to a tee. Humanity, since the days of Cain, has been blindly caught up … Continue reading

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John in July: Vina and the Golden Vine (Jn 15)

Pruning and Winnowing At the end of June, I stayed a couple nights at a Cistercian monastery in a town called Vina, a few hours north of Berkeley. They grow their own grapes and work with a fifth-generation winemaker to … Continue reading

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John in July: The Way and the Truth of the Accuser and the Advocate (Jn 14)

“I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6 I often like to claim a triple religious identity by calling myself an “episcobujew” (an Episcopalian Buddhist Jew). I honestly … Continue reading

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John in July: Listening to the Heartbeat of God (Jn 13)

In Listening for the Heartbeat of God: A Celtic Spirituality, the Rev. Dr. J. Philip Newell traces the rich traditions of Celtic spirituality from the first British theologian and heretic Pelagius, to the inspired universalism of Johannes Scotus Eriugena, to … Continue reading

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Mary Magdalene, the Mother of Female Mystics

An interlude between reflections on the Book of Signs (Jn 1-11) and the Book of Glory (Jn 13-21): A reflection on Mary Magdalene for her feast day… For years, I have been drawn to the spirituality of female mystics like … Continue reading

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John in July: “Christ, You Know it Ain’t Easy…” (Jn 12)

The Gospel of John seems to emphasize the divinity of Christ more than the other Gospels and some think that this emphasis overwhelms and downplays the humanity of Jesus. Indeed, a towering Johannine scholar of the 20th century Ernst Käsemann … Continue reading

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John in July: Winnowed and Gathered Bread for the Winnowed and Gathered Community (Jn 11: 45 – 57)

On my first visit to the Holy Land, I often found myself wanting to linger over sites after the tour guide moved on. One time, after the guide showed us how ancient farmers would winnow grain, I succumbed to my … Continue reading

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