Sunday, August 30, 2015

Lectionary Ruminations 2.0 for Sunday, September 6, 2015, the Twenty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year B)

Lectionary Ruminations 2.0 is a revised continuation of Lectionary Ruminations.  Focusing on The Revised Common Lectionary Readings for the upcoming Sunday from New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) of the Bible, Lectionary Ruminations 2.0 draws on nearly thirty years of pastoral experience.  Believing that the questions we ask are often more important than any answers we find, without overreliance on commentaries I intend with comments and questions to encourage reflection and rumination for readers preparing to teach, preach, or hear the Word. Reader comments are invited and encouraged.  All lectionary links are to the via the PC(USA) Devotions and Readings website.

22:1-2, 8-9, 22-23 This Reading sounds like a collection of fortune cookie inserts.
22:1 What is the history and meaning of your name?  What name is above every other name?  What is “favor”?
22:2 Is this ALL the rich and poor have in common?
22:8 Let all those running for President this election cycle beware. While this seems true, it seems to take time for justice to work itself out.
22:9 How are the generous blessed. Are we called to chare only bread?
22:22 How are the poor often robbed? Is it alright to crush the afflicted if they are not at the gate?
22:22-23 This reads like a passage for the 99% and a nation obsessed with wealth over justice for the poor and oppressed.

125:1 How do you define trust? If a person had enough faith, could they move even Mount Zion?
125:2 How do the mountains surround Jerusalem? What is it about being surrounded by mountains that is good news?
125:3 What is a scepter and what does it symbolize?
125:4-5a Is this a theology of reward and punishment? Is there a self-fulfilling prophecy at work here?
125:5b What would peace being upon Israel look like today?

21:1 What “acts of favoritism” are being referred to?
21:2-4 Have you ever witnessed any such thing? Do many congregations still consciously or unconsciously show such favoritism? I thought this went away with the phase out of rented pews.
21:5-7 Here is some more Scripture with good news for the 99% and a word of judgment for the 1%.
21:8 Why is this law referred to as “the royal law”?
21:9-10 This sounds like Paul.
(21:11 This verse seems to me to get it backwards.
21:12 What is “law of liberty”?)
21:14 I am hearing refrain from last Sunday. Can faith save YOU?
21:15-16 Does James distinguish between showing compassion for other Christians and non-Christians?
21:17 Faith, without works, might be dead.  But what are works without faith?

7:24 Who set out from where?  What do you know about Tyre?  Why did Jesus not want anyone to know he was in the house? Escaping notice does not seem to be the Church’s problem today.
7:25 How do post-modern, scientifically informed people of faith handle passages like this that speak of “unclean spirits”? Hd this woman not heard about Jesus before?
7:26 What difference does it make that she was a Gentile?  Of Syrophoenician origin?
7:27 How do you react to the fact that Jesus said this? Was Jesus quoting something?
7:28 Let’s hope crumbs is all the dogs eat while they are under the children’s table.
7:29 Why was her response rewarded?
7:30 How could Jesus heal someone without that person even being present for laying on of hands?
7:31 What do you know of Sidon abd the region of the Decapolis? Do these geographical references really matter?
7:32 What sort of impediment do you imagine?
7:33 Why in private?  Why put fingers in ears and touch tongues instead of laying on hands?
7:34 What language is “Ephphatha”?  Where else in Scripture do we hear a world like this?
7:35 Note Mark’s reliance on “immediately” as in this verse and 7:25
7:36 What do you know about “the Messianic secret”? Who did Jesus order not to tell?
7:37 When was the last time you or members of the congregation you are associated with were astounded? Why does this Gospel have people talking about Jesus healing the deaf and mute but not the possessed?

ADDENDUM
I am currently serving at the Interim Pastor of The Presbyterian Churchof Cadiz, worshiping at 154 West Market Street, Cadiz, Ohio, every Sunday at 11:00 AM. Please like The Presbyterian Church of Cadiz on facebook.


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