Sunday, September 16, 2012

O You of Little Faith

Here on the Mount, Jesus chastises and scolds in a way that is Here on the Mount, Jesus chastises and scolds in a way that is both tender and firm, serious yet playful. And He gives those gathered to hear Him speak of His Father in heaven a nickname-- O you of little faith. In the Greek of the New Testament, it is one word—oligopistoi. How's that for a nickname? "Oligopistoi." It is a combination of "oligos," meaning little; and "pistis," meaning faith. It sounds rather ugly, even foul to our American ears, but it is both gentle admonition and loving exhortation to the ear of faith—as little or oligo as that pistis faith might be. It is a word invented by Jesus for us—a nickname He gives to us like parents calling their mischievous toddlers "little stinkers"—in order to get the point across that we are doing something wrong, something that might well prove dangerous to us, but He still loves us and scolds us because He cares. [Thanks to my father confessor, Rev. Jonathan Lange, for the sermon inspiration as per above.] To hear or read the entire sermon preached for the Fifteenth Sunday after Trinity at Trinity, Layton, "O You of Little Faith"--beginning with the Old Testament Reading and concluding with the Prayer of the Church, go to

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