The Good Pharisees, Part 1

There are a lot of movies with the word “good” in the title. Off the top of your head, how many can you think of? If you were on your game, you probably mentioned several of the following: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966), The Goodbye Girl (1977), Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day (2014), Goodfellas (1990), Good Morning, Vietnam (1987), A Few Good Men (1992), Good Will Hunting (1997), Goodbye Christopher Robin (2017), Goodbye, Mr. Chips (1939), The Good German (2006), The Good Lie (204), and As Good As It Gets (1997); and that is not to mention some TV series like The Good Place, Good Omens and Stranger Things (ok, I know, this one doesn’t have good in the title, but it’s still really good).  Based on all of these titles, here’s what I think: If you have the adjective “good” before

Matthew 23 (Again)

Okay, suppose you are a Wycliffe Bible translator and you’ve come to John 6:35 where Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life.” But there is a problem: the culture for whom you are translating doesn’t have bread. In fact, they never have seen or tasted bread. As a translator, what do you do now? This was the question facing one translator in Papua New Guinea. The Dani people had no bread of any sort.  Now, if this was some verse tucked away in Nahum, no one would really care (I know, I just threw Nahum under the bus and for that I am sorry; but really, when was the last time you read Nahum?). But this was in John’s gospel, and Jesus’ words here were extremely important. Jesus was declaring that he was the true manna from heaven and that, by believing in him, the hungry souls of people

The Matthew 23 Pharisee, Part 2

True confession. I often root for the bad guy. I always pull for the monster in every Frankenstein movie (Isn’t it clear that if there is a bad guy here, it is the grave-robbing Doctor Frankenstein?). And in all the Jurassic Park movies, you will always find me pulling for the dinosaurs to have a good meal and the sooner into the movie, the better. I so wanted the Creature from the Black Lagoon to win; and any time The Mummy shows up, please know I will be in his corner. I feel that Loki is basically misunderstood; and while he is extremely mischievous (and definitely broken—childhood trauma, no doubt)), I can’t wish him harm.  And I cheered when Verbal walked out of the police station in The Usual Suspects. Even if he isn’t Keyser Soze, he is pretty cool. And to be perfectly honest and open, anytime I watch

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