Truth to Power

Click here to listen to this 14-minute message.

The Gospel of Mark, chapter 6, verses 14-29, presents us with the grisly narrative of the beheading of John the Baptist, at the hands of Herod Antipas, on request of his step-daughter Salome, who was acting on instruction from her mother Herodias. It is a passage that is inserted abruptly in an unrelated narrative about Jesus’ disciples performing miracles and preaching the Gospel. What is the purpose of such a narrative?

In this message, I suggest it serves as a tale about power and corruption. And about our role in the face of such power and corruption. I make three points:

  1. We need to avoid the entanglement of sin and guilt.
  2. We need to recognise and speak truth to the power of the powerful.
  3. We need to accept the cost of discipleship.

Christianity is not just about fellowship and singing choruses. It is not just about the love of God. It is also about challenging power and corruption in the world, about speaking truth to power. It is about championing Kingdom values, such as compassion, integrity, the intrinsic value of every person, equity, justice, the sacredness of the earth. It is about standing against oppression, exclusion, domination, exploitation, injustice and abuse. It is about accepting, even embracing, that speaking truth to power may have negative consequences for us. Christianity is serious business!

(Richard Strauss composed a chilling opera about this narrative called Salome. Not for the faint-hearted! Here is a link to a recent production.)

2 thoughts on “Truth to Power

  1. Genevieve Geekie says:

    Hi, dear Adrian

    Just back after six “hot” weeks in England and Europe. (Stockholm recorded its hottest summer in 263 years – temps reaching 40* and over).

    Thank you for remembering me. I think of you and your family often, How is your son doing ? He went into photography, didn’t he?

    Much love to ou and the people we know mutually.

    Gen Geekie.

    On Sun, Jul 15, 2018 at 12:15 PM Reflections of God’s Love wrote:

    > Adrian van Breda posted: “Click here to listen to this 14-minute message. > The Gospel of Mark, chapter 6, verses 14-29, presents us with the grisly > narrative of the beheading of John the Baptist, at the hands of Herod > Antipas, on request of his step-daughter Salome, who was acting” >

    Like

    • Thanks Genny. Lovely to hear from you. I’m delighted you had just a lovely visit overseas. My son, Erin, is doing well. He’s studying graphic design and enjoying it a lot! Much love, Adrian

      From: Reflections of God’s Love Sent: Wednesday, 15 August 2018 16:53 To: advanbreda@gmail.com Subject: [Reflections of God’s Love] Comment: “Truth to Power”

      Respond to this comment by replying above this line

      New comment on Reflections of God’s Love

      Genevieve Geekie commented on Truth to Power

      Click here to listen to this 14-minute message. The Gospel of Mark, chapter 6, verses 14-29, presents us with the grisly …

      Hi, dear Adrian

      Just back after six “hot” weeks in England and Europe. (Stockholm recorded its hottest summer in 263 years – temps reaching 40* and over).

      Thank you for remembering me. I think of you and your family often, How is your son doing ? He went into photography, didn’t he?

      Much love to ou and the people we know mutually.

      Gen Geekie.

      Like

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