Archives For gospel narrative

noah? no, uh…

mjkimpan  —  April 11, 2014 — 13 Comments


i might lose some more subscribers with this one.

have you seen the ‘noah’ movie yet? in its opening weekend, the poetic tale of genesis chapters 6-9 brought in $43.7 million, topping the box office. in just two weeks, it’s earned nearly $200 million.

some people didn’t like it (including the vatican),  offered detailed deconstructions of the film, and have quite a bit to say about it. others, like my friend tony jones, blogged about what an incredible film it was.

and yet others critiqued it on principle – seemingly without either seeing the film, or even re-reading their bibles.

comedian/provocateur jon stewart explains :: Continue Reading…

refusing to refuse.

mjkimpan  —  February 21, 2014 — Leave a comment


it was almost time.

three years had passed since jesus first extended the invitation to this rag-tag group of curiously single jewish men.

‘follow me,’ he had said.

they were misfits, all of them. yet they found in their brotherhood a sense of solidarity with one another, in spite of their differences. this, of course, laid the ground work for their eventual understanding of christ’s stand in solidarity with all of humanity. Continue Reading…

response to SCOTUS.

mjkimpan  —  June 26, 2013 — 23 Comments


this morning, SCOTUS announced that the so-called Defense of Marriage Act (ironically signed into law by bill clinton during his two-term presidency) is ‘unconstitutional as a deprivation of the equal liberty of persons that is protected by the fifth amendment…DOMA singles out a class of persons deemed by a state entitled to recognition and protection to enhance their own liberty.’

the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) defines ‘marriage,’ for purposes of over a thousand federal laws and programs, as a union between a man and a woman only.

today SCOTUS ruled by a vote of 5-4 that the law is unconstitutional . the court explained that the states have long had the responsibility of regulating and defining marriage, and some states have opted to allow same sex couples to marry – to give them the protection and dignity associated with marriage.

by denying recognition to same-sex couples who are legally married, federal law discriminates against them to express disapproval of state-sanctioned-same-sex marriage.

in other words, same-sex couples who are legally married will be entitled to equal treatment as married opposite-sex couples under federal law – with regard to, for example, income taxes and social security benefits.

Continue Reading…

editing the gospel.

mjkimpan  —  April 11, 2013 — 6 Comments

imagine if jesus refused to engage with those whose beliefs were different than his own, or worried about risking his standing in religious culture more than caring for the Other.

imagine if he concerned himself with being misunderstood by the first century israeli paparazzi and therefore excused himself from places and faces that might affect his ‘holy’ image and reputation.

we might have to edit out a few stories in the gospels.

like, all of them.

Continue Reading…


mjkimpan  —  February 6, 2013 — Leave a comment


the passover was near… a time when God’s spirit hovering over his people was palpable, resurrecting memories of the first moments of creation, and the deliverance that followed in the story of the great exodus.

the days leading up to the feast always brought a bittersweet mixture of trepidation and rigidity. in order to participate in the commemoration of their liberation from egyptian slavery and bondage, one had to ensure their entire household was free of any impurity. even the cracks of the floor were scrubbed to rid the house of חמץ (chametz) – and anything made with chametz was either consumed or thrown out and burned prior to the passover seder.

Continue Reading…

don’t tell anyone.

mjkimpan  —  January 30, 2013 — 9 Comments

jesus and the twelve had made the 25 mile trek off the shores of the sea of galilee, and stopped to rest outside the district of caesarea. they sat along the fallen rocks on the side of the dust-filled road, their cloaks musty with the sweat of travel.

amidst their discussion and reminiscing of the miraculous discovery of the bushelfuls filled with bread to feed the crowds in previous towns, hunger had crept in. lucky for them, the sons of zebedee had purchased an ample supply of figs for the journey.

sitting in a circle under the nearly setting sun, they ate and laughed together.

jesus, always one to turn the discussion toward something significant, asked his disciples ::

who do people say i am?

Continue Reading…

(dis)connected, no more.

mjkimpan  —  January 15, 2013 — 5 Comments

what would it look like for us to (re)learn to love? to actually connect the current understanding of what it means to be a christ follower with his teachings and his life?

jesus said we would be known by our love.

i am convinced in order to love well – particularly in a relationship where one or both parties have been hurt or disconnected – we must make a commitment toward fidelity and reconciliation.

fidelity is merely loyalty, dependability and faithfulness in a relationship. around The Marin Foundation, reconciliation is defined as the intentional pursuit of that which is disconnected.

Continue Reading…


mjkimpan  —  December 4, 2012 — 12 Comments

‘i tell you the truth :: before abraham was, I AM.’

jesus had just made his most blatantly blasphemous statement yet – recalling burning bushes, holy ground, and history’s greatest prophet sent to liberate God’s people – right in the middle of the temple during worship on the sabbath.

the scribes scurried to grab stones to throw in response to his claim of divinity – but jesus snuck out, avoiding their attack. he had a knack for getting out of tough spots before things got out of hand.

along the escape route, jesus and his disciples came across a man begging for alms from his blindness. ‘mercy. mercy for a blind man?’

Continue Reading…

nope. neither.

mjkimpan  —  November 19, 2012 — 14 Comments

it was an exciting time for the people of God. after wandering in the wilderness for forty years, they had come up to the jordan river – the barrier that protected the people of canaan against an invasion of their land – and crossed. the inhabitants of the land had heard of the miracle of these israelites crossing on dry land and filed behind the mysterious ark of the covenant the jews made with their God, YHVH. their hearts melted.

joshua had recently taken the mantle of leadership from their prophet moses, and had his blessing to bring these people into the land that had been promised so many years before to their forefather, abraham.

after celebrating the sign of their covenant with God – a painful yet  productive endeavor – the manna which had systematically fallen from the sky ceased, and the people for the first time ate fruits in the land of their enemies.

these were exciting times indeed.

Continue Reading…


mjkimpan  —  November 5, 2012 — 14 Comments

an eclipsed moon was eerily peering through the gate of the old city, adding to the aura of stealth on an otherwise black night.

faint shadows chased his every step, casting images on the sandstone city walls. more than once nicodemus spun around expecting to be seen.

he couldn’t quite shake the feeling he was being followed.

fear haunted the decorated member of the sanhedrin as he crept toward his clandestine meeting with the rabbi. the darkness of the night engulfed him as he made his way up the steps to their determined meeting place. exposure could ruin everything.

‘what is it you seek?’

Continue Reading…