Sunday, May 29, 2011


Have you ever had need of a mansion? Have you ever gone shopping for a mansion?

John 14 is translated in a variety of ways. NKJV records Jesus' saying, "In My Father's house are many mansions." NASB says there are many dwelling places. ESV (which is in our funeral rite) says "many rooms." For the last few years, my pastor has been making sure to point out that "many mansions" is not about opulence and luxury. He says the word is better translated as "rooms" or "dwelling places." He says that the word "mansion" conjures up images of a humongous place where we rattle around, lonely.

I guess, when you think of the McMansions built in the 1990's and the first decade of this century, yup, there is a lot of emptiness in our idea of mansions. So many people have big houses and big yards, but are never there, living in those huge houses. And these big houses are often home to just a few people, with each kid having his own 18x25' bedroom.

But when I think of mansion-shopping, I think of hunting up a 16-bedroom house for a family reunion. That's the point of a mansion! You want to find a place big enough to cram everybody in. That way you can eat together, visit, play cards, play Apples-to-Apples, find somebody to go swimming with, and just generally revel in the company of your beloved family.

I guess that's exactly what Pastor's trying to get across when he brings up the topic of "mansions." It's about being in community, being made in the image of God, giving and receiving love. And conversation. And meals.

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