two verses

August has become a big month. Four generations are involved. My granddaughter's birthday is followed my wife's birthday which is followed by my son's birthday ... and in the middle of all this comes my father's deathday - tomorrow, actually. It has been six years. I still miss him.

Dad in his New Delhi (I think) office during his days as International Director of Interserve

In this post I focus just on my dad and my son and Bible verses they have given me. Every now and then Dad would use this verse with me. It comes in Matthew, Mark and Luke.
You are my son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.
Yes, I know. It is a voice from heaven speaking to Jesus at his baptism. But I've missed hearing it from my Dad, particularly these last few months for some reason. When I was a child I didn't look much like either of my parents, or my siblings, and so there was a bit of joking about being adopted. Being assured of this sonship (together with seeing my own growing likeness to Dad in these later years since he died) - and of this love - was always precious. Also I was always happy to be known as 'Ray's son' and enjoyed that quiet satisfaction of knowing that I lived a life that pleased him.

Then there is my son, Joseph. Our youngest child. When he was much younger and still learning to read his Bible and put it together, he was totally stoked to find a verse just for me. Always the enthusiast, it kinda burst out of him as he gave it to me as his own paraphrase - with a 'the' changed to a 'da'...
You are da man.
Short. Simple. Easy to remember. I've certainly never forgotten it. The time did come when I needed to tell Joseph that this was a verse given to David by Nathan after he committed adultery with Bathsheba and had her husband killed in battle. Nathan tells David a story about a lamb - which he doesn't understand - and so the verse is not one of enthusiastic affirmation, but of judgemental condemnation. [As you can imagine, this is a story I love to tell in training seminars around the world.]

With Joseph in England after we stayed overnight, unknowingly,
in some sort of spa for middle-aged women looking for some beauty therapy.
Coming down for breakfast caused a surprise or two - for them and us.

Maybe it is possible to be blessed by verses taken out of context, but it is not so wise to make a habit of it! As I was taught, understanding the Bible is about 'context, context, context'.

nice chatting



Paul said…
Under such fine tutelage, I'm sure Josh's embryonic preaching career is not given to such contextual errors :).

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