I am going to cover two days in the Gospel of John (John 5: 1-29), as we begin week three of the Good Book Club's exploration of John. Over the course of twenty-nine verses Jesus heals a man paralyzed for thirty-eight years. He continues by making bold claims: not only is He Son of God but He has the powerful of life and death, bondage and freedom, and speaks of resurrection of the dead, among other things. The ruling authority wants Jesus dead and out of the way; often the way of powerful people when somoeone speaks words of life that are for all, not just the monied or powerful.
On this day we commemorate the life and witness of Martin Luther King, Jr. We would do well to remember why he was deemed dangerous to the FBI, the white establishment and even large cross sections of the Christian Church: because he proclaimed with an eloquent, authoratative, and decidedly Christian voice that the God of creation was God of all and wanted all of His children to be One. Jesus did not claim that those in power should be disenfranchized. Rather, he proclaimed that their power, influence, and wealth mattered not one whit in the kingdom of God and they were no more important that the poorest peasant, or the widowed woman or orphaned child. We are one body, one hope, one spirit - many who make up the one body of He who saved the world. Jesus tells us to take up our mats, our lives, our imperfect selves and walk into life armed with His patience, love, and endurance, and repentance.