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Outside In: Permeating Grace to the Mothers of Jesus

“Just look inside yourself.” So goes a popular mantra of conventional wisdom. As a society, we function on the notion that we already have everything we need to flourish in this world.

But if that were true, why are things still such a mess? Why are there so many walls that divide us? Why do so many feel like outsiders? Why do we feel like outsiders?

Perhaps it’s because though we attempt to establish our lives by looking inside, God’s kingdom has always been about the outside entering in.  

In the first chapter of his Gospel, Matthew recounts the genealogy of Jesus Christ. Among the names are references to five women – five “mothers” of Jesus. Even a quick glimpse at their stories reveals these were outsiders. Morally, racially (at least a few of them), and the simple fact that they were women meant they were outsiders in a male-dominated society. In first century Judaism, women were hardly ever included in a genealogy – let alone women who weren’t Jews and who had a tainted moral background.

But this isn’t just anyone’s genealogy. This is Jesus’ genealogy. And if ever there were a picture of an outsider entering in, it’s the incarnation of Jesus: the one who left glory to enter into darkness and bring light. The one who left perfection to enter into chaos and bring renewal. The one who left life to enter into into death and bring resurrection.

Because Jesus entered in from the outside, we who are outsiders can enter into the kingdom of God.

Join us this Advent at Liberti Church as we consider God’s permeating grace toward the mothers of Jesus. As we consider the lives of these five female ancestors of our Lord and Savior, we’ll celebrate how God has made a way for outsiders to enter in. Through their stories, we’ll consider our own need to look outside ourselves – to the One who entered in – that we too might share in this grace.



Sunday, November 26: Tamar | Gen 38

Sunday, December 3: Rahab | Josh 2,6 (First Sunday in Advent)

Sunday, December 10: Ruth | Ruth 1-4 (Second Sunday in Advent)

Sunday, December 17: Bathsheba | 2 Sam 11-12 (Third Sunday in Advent)

Sunday, December 24: Mary | Luke 1 (Fourth Sunday in Advent & Christ Candle)

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