Thursday, March 15, 2012

Lectionary Ruminations for Sunday, March 18, 2012, the Fourth Sunday in Lent (Year B)

Posted each Thursday, Lectionary Ruminations focuses on the Scripture Readings, taken from the New Revised Standard Version, for the following Sunday per the Revised Common Lectionary. Comments and questions are intended to encourage reflection for readers preparing to teach, preach, or hear the Word. Reader comments are invited and encouraged. All lectionary links are to the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) of the Bible via the PC(USA) Devotions and Readings website, but if you prefer another translation, feel free to use that instead. (Other references may be linked to the NRSV via the oremus Bible Browser.) 


v. 4 Where is Mount Hor?  Why did they avoid Edom?

v. 5 Who is “you”?  What was the miserable food the people detested?

v. 6 Why would the Lord send poisonous snakes. Maybe the people needed St. Patrick as their leader rather than Moses.

vs. 8-9 What do you know about the psychological and spiritual symbolism of the rod of Asclepius?  What might Carl Jung have said about this passage?  Is there anything idolatrous about what Moses has fashioned?  Where might you find a reference to this passage in the Christian Scriptures?

v. 2 Who are the redeemed?

v. 3 Note the four cardinal directions.

v. 17 Must illness be caused by sin only?

v. 19 Who are the “they”?

v. 20 How can a word heal?

vs.21-22 Do these verses refer only to what precedes or to all God’s wonderful works?

v. 1 What sort of death is the author writing about?

v. 2 Who or what is the ruler of the power of the air?

v. 3 Does the argument presume a dichotomy between flesh and spirit?

v. 7 When and what are the ages to come?

v. 10 Is this a reference to the creation of Genesis? The argument seems to be that once saved by grace, good works will follow. Therefore, by extension, good works are evidence of our salvation.

v. 14 You gotta love John! You may want to look at what John Sanford has to say about this passage in his Jungian/Psychological commentary on John entitled Mystical Christianity. Who is speaking in this verse?

v. 16 Why do so many people quote this verse while ignoring the two before? What is the meaning of “gave”?

v. 17 So why does so much of popular Christianity sound condemnatory?  What is the meaning of “the world”?

v. 18 What is the source of condemnation?

v.19 How can we talk about light and darkness while avoiding racial overtones?  Is “shadows” a better image than “darkness”?

ADDENDUM
In addition to serving as the half time Pastor of North Church Queens and writing Lectionary Ruminations, I also tutor part time.  If you or someone you know needs a tutor, or if you would like to be a tutor, check out my WyzAnt page and follow the appropriate links.

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