Nov. 10 Gathering: Interpreting scripture

There’s a story in the Gospel of Luke where a group of religious purists called the Sadducees confront Jesus over the question of resurrection (Luke 20:27-40) It appears on the surface that they’re trying to trap Jesus over a fairly minor bit of theology.

But on closer examination of the text, we can see that the Sadducees are really not interested in what Jesus thinks about resurrection. What they really want to challenge is Jesus’ authority to interpret the Hebrew scriptures.

The scene is part of a series of events recorded in Luke just after Jesus arrives in Jerusalem for what will be the last time before his crucifixion. And the reason the religious leaders want to challenge Jesus’ authority to interpret scripture is that they want to disrupt his authority as the leader of the political revolt that is simmering around him. They figure if they can show that Jesus can’t interpret scripture correctly, he has no credibility as the leader of his movement.

How we interpret scripture has been a major point of contention in the church ever since the Protestant Reformation. But long before that, the priests and teachers of the law in Jesus’ time had deep divisions over how their sacred texts were to be elucidated.

So what does all that mean for how we interpret the Bible in our present contexts? Is there just one way to read scripture? Can we disagree over interpretations and still be viable as the church?

Join us this Sunday, Nov. 10, in the 167 Side Room of the Marietta Brewing Company for a conversation about interpretation and authority, and why they’re important in our world today.

Happy half-hour at 6:30pm, conversation starts at 7:00pm

May 21 Gathering: The Bible Tells Me So?


Everyone has one. A favorite verse from scripture. Whether it’s something to help us remember a loved one, an inspiration of some kind, or a rule of life, we carry our favorite Bible verses close to the heart.

Of course, plucking a single verse out of the library of stories, letters, poems, histories, genealogies, and apocolypses that make up the Christian Bible can be a dangerous game. Often–although unintentionally–we can take things out of context and lose their original meaning.

This Sunday at New Wineskins, we’ll talk about some of our favorite verses, why they have particular importance for us, and look at the contexts from which they arise. The hope is that we’ll find even deeper and richer meanings as we dig deeper behind those treasured passages.

Join us Sunday, May 21, in the 167 Side Room of the Marietta Brewing Company with your favorite verses and passages to discuss!

Happy Half-Hour: 6:30pm

Conversation Begins: 7:00pm

Feb. 12 Gathering: Surviving Spiritual Dry Spells


We all have them. Those times when we just can’t seem to muster any kind of spiritual energy. Our prayers seem empty, our devotional time goes missing. Our doubt may increase. Our faith wavers.

This week at New Wineskins, we’ll talk about what those dry spells are like, what may bring them on, how we cope with them, and any ways we may have found to dig ourselves out. Everyone will be encouraged to share their own experiences in the hope that we all may find new strategies for dealing with spiritual dry spells.

Join us Sunday, Feb. 12 in the 167 Side Room of the Marietta Brewing Company and be part of the conversation!

Happy Half-Hour: 6:30pm

Conversation Begins: 7:00pm

March 13 Gathering: Open Forum / Q&A

Background of questions

Lots of people have lots of questions about the Bible.

It’s only natural. Despite the claims of some fundamentalists, the Bible is anything but clear in regard to any number of issues. Not only do we bring our own perspectives and experiences to our reading of scripture, but there are also historical and contextual issues associated with these ancient texts.

This Sunday at New Wineskins, we’ll hold an Open Forum/Q&A night where you the participants will steer the conversation. We’ll open the floor to whatever questions you might have about the topics and passages you find difficult, and we’ll discuss our various points of view.

For this gathering, we’ll steer clear of the so-called “clobber passages” regarding homosexuality. While there is certainly much to be discussed along those lines, we’ve largely covered that ground before and, for now at least, wish to focus on other issues of equal importance which may not get as much attention.

Join us this Sunday, March 13, at the Marietta Brewing Company with the hard questions you want to discuss. We may not have any answers, but we’ll certainly come away with deeper understandings!

Happy Half-Hour: 6:30pm

Conversation Begins: 7:00pm