“Back to Business as Usual?” – Sermon from April 14, 2013

[audio http://traffic.libsyn.com/northminsterpc/Sermon_04-14-13_-_Back_to_Business_as_Usual.mp3]

campfire on beach

In his novel The River Why, David James Duncan tells the story of a fly-fisherman and offers an interesting take on this story from John. He writes: “Like gamblers, baseball fans, and television networks, fishermen are enamored of statistics. The adoration of statistics is a trait so deeply embedded in their nature that even those rarefied anglers, the disciples of Jesus couldn’t resist backing their yarns with arithmetic: when the resurrected Christ appears on the morning shore of the Sea of Galilee and we learn that the net contained not ‘a boatload’ of fish, nor ‘about one hundred and a half,’ nor ‘over a gross,’ but precisely ‘one hundred and fifty and three.’ This is, it seems to me, one of the most remarkable statistics ever computed. Consider the circumstances: this is after the Crucifixion and the Resurrection; Jesus is standing on the beach newly risen from the dead, and it is only the third time the disciples have seen him since the nightmare of  Calvary. And yet we learn that in the net there were ‘great fishes’, numbering precisely “a hundred and fifty and three.’ How was this digit discovered? Mustn’t it have happened thus: upon hauling the net to shore, the disciples squatted down by that immense, writhing fish pile and started tossing them into a second pile, painstakingly counting ‘one, two, three, four, five, six, seven . . .’ all of the way up to a hundred and fifty and three, while the newly risen Lord of Creation, the Sustainer of their beings, He who died for them, stood waiting, ignored, till the heap of fish was quantified.”

Jesus Loves Me (with new verses by John Bell)

Jesus loves me, this I know

for the Bible tells me so.

All of us to him belong;

if we’re weak, our Lord is strong







Jesus loves me when I fail,

when my faith is firm or frail;

he can deal with what’s inside

summon courage, silence pride.


Jesus loves me. He’ll reveal

what is right and what is real.

He knows how my life should be

and calls out the best in me.

Copyright (c) WGRG/ Wild Goose Resource Group, Iona Community, Glasgow


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