Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Gospel Medicine: Chapter 1 - Gospel Medicine

This blog series is based on the book "Gospel Medicine" by Barbara Brown Taylor, an Episcopal minister who has written several books based on her own life and her sermons. "Gospel Medicine" is a book of sermons around the concept that the Gospel of Christ is medicine to the soul. I discovered this book while attending a morning book club at my local United Church and I was blown away by the depth and beauty of Taylor's writing. These posts will be looking at each of the chapters of this particular book.

Taylor begins this chapter introducing us to Luke. I did not know he was a physician, so I looked on the internet for more information regarding that tidbit that Taylor gives. I found this from Examiner It does not say for certain that Luke was a physician, but it points to the possibility. Certainly the physician named Luke in the scriptures may or may not be the same Luke who writes the book of Luke.

This is Taylors introductory chapter to the book and doesn't delve too deeply into theology at this juncture. Her main point is that the gospel is medicine.

The following passage says it all so eloquently.

"On the one hand, the gospel is just a bunch of words. "Weep no more." "Do not be afraid." "Your sins are forgiven." "Stand up and walk." They are just words, and prescribing them to an ailing world seems as futile as putting a bandage on a broken bone or an aspirin in the hand of someone who is dying. But when we proclaim these words as gospel, we say more: we say that they are words that belong to someone, and that every time we speak them someone is present, speaking them with us, speaking them through us, so that we never speak them alone, and they never come back empty. They effect what they proclaim: they dry tears, they quench fears, they forgive sins, they heal souls, they make true the good news of God in Christ every time we speak them."

How beautifully joyous!

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