“The Bible says to greet one another with a holy kiss,” she said. The rest of us sitting around the table smiled. We were sitting in an ice cream shop in Cleveland, Ohio. We had wrapped up an outreach activity for a Christian student group at the college we went to, and now we were wrapping up our ice cream afterward. We smiled because of her tone of voice. It was that playful tone that half says, “I’m just throwing this out there,” and half asks us to get in on the joke. Who would greet one another with a holy kiss in this day and age?
From that time, Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. So begins Matthew’s account of Jesus’ public ministry.
“We believe and confess that, since the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth, and therefore prone to all unrighteousness, sin, and wickedness, the first lesson of the precious New Testament of the Son of God is repentance and reformation of life.” So begins Article 6 of the Dordrecht Confession.