Fr. Jefferson Bennit

Three Texts to Understand Mission in Old Testament

Three Texts to Understand Mission in Old Testament

There are three basic texts that make it clear that God did do just that: Genesis 12,1-3; Exodus 19,5-6 and Psalm 67. These three texts are so basic to our understanding of the missionary mandate that God had designed for the whole nation of Israel that it is impossible to view the Old Testament fairly without treating these texts in their missionary context. Israel had always, in the plan and…

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Abraham - blessing for all families of earth

Abraham – blessing for all families of earth

There are two traditions concerning Abraham’s blessing for all the families of the earth. One interpretation understands the ‘blessing’ in a reflexive sense while the other takes it as passive. The Hebrew verb is the niphal. The Hebrew niphal usually has a passive sense, although it can also bear a reflexive meaning.[1] The version that takes the niphalas a reflexive sees Abraham to be a paradigm…

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John 4: 43-54 – Jesus Heals Official’s Son

John 4: 43-54 – Jesus Heals Official’s Son

The evangelist ends John 4 with the narration of the second sign, namely the healing of the royal official’s son. This concludes the section called “from Cana to Cana”. From another point of view this will be the third type of response to the revelation of Jesus, a response from a person who is a gentile. The narration deals with two major themes: faith and life.

There are two narrations in the…

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John 4: 39-42 - Encounter between Jesus and Villagers

John 4: 39-42 – Encounter between Jesus and Villagers

The concluding scene describes the encounter between Jesus and the villagers. Through the woman they came to Jesus and recognized him as “the Saviour of the world”. They tell clearly that they do not need the mediation of the woman anymore. She was evangelized; she became an evangelizer; and now she must disappear from the stage and let the villagers grow in Jesus directly. As evangelizer, she…

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Formation of Gospels - Conclusion

Formation of Gospels – Conclusion

Our written gospels, then, are the result of a long process of historical development. They describe the person of Jesus, his words and deeds, his passion, death, and resurrection. But the gospels are not histories or biographies in the modern sense of these terms. They are a proclamation of the salvific acts of God in Jesus with a view to evoking and strengthening faith. The gospels are not a…

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Mark 1: 15 – Kingdom of God

Mark 1: 15 – Kingdom of God

The proclamation of the Kingdom of God belongs to the heart of Jesus’ message and ministry. We have only symbolic sayings and actions through which Jesus discloses the meaning of the Kingdom. It does not refer to a place or territory or simply to ‘royal power’ as the word ‘kingdom’ tends to suggest in our common usage. The basic meaning of the symbolic expression ‘Kingdom of God’ refers to the…

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Luke 1-2 - Infancy Narratives and Old Testament Background

Luke 1-2 – Infancy Narratives and Old Testament Background

The first two chapters of Luke’s Gospel are known as the ‘infancy narratives’. Matthew, too, devotes the first two chapters of his gospel to stories of Jesus’ infancy. The Lukan chapters, however, present not only Jesus’ infancy but also that of John the Baptist. The style and content of these two chapters of Luke are markedly different from the rest of the gospel ad Acts of the Apostles. The…

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John 4: 27-30 - Interlude

John 4: 27-30 – Interlude

The second scene (John 4: 31-38) is prepared by an interlude. The woman is gone to the village and the disciples have come back from the town.

In the second scene Jesus explains to the disciples the significance of his action in favour of the Samaritan woman. Two leading themes are: food and harvest.

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John 4: 35-38 – Theme of “Harvest”

John 4: 35-38 – Theme of “Harvest”

The second theme in John 4: 31-38 is “harvest”. In the Old Testament “harvest” is the symbol of eschatological judgment (Joel 3: 13; Is 27: 12). Jesus invites the attention of the disciples to the fields that are not yet ripe. However, he asserts that it is time for harvest because the Samaritan villagers were on the way to Jesus at a distance. Jesus’ mission is the fulfilment of the will of the…

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