Thursday, March 11, 2010

Lectionary Ruminations for Sunday, Lectionary Ruminations for March 14, 2010, the Fourth Sunday in Lent (Year C)

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 are linked to the NRSV via the oremus Bible Browser.)

Joshua 5:9-12
v. 9 I love the numerous passages that explain why places and people have the names they do. And what does Gilgal mean?

v. 10 The Passover can be celebrated anywhere, even while backpacking on the plains of Jericho.

vs. 11-12 Now that the Israelites enjoy the produce of the land, the manna stops. Either way, God is the provider.

Psalm 32
Confession is good for the soul, and one’s demeanor. Are Christians happier than non-Christians?

v.9 Some good advice: Don't be an ass.

I usually see more of a thematic connection between the First Reading and the Psalm, but I am not seeing much this week. What am I missing?

2 Corinthians 5:16-21
v. 17 A traditional liturgical sentence, a Call to Confession.

vs. 18-19 I hear the Confession of 1967 here.

v. 19 What does it mean to be an “Ambassador for Christ”? Usually we talk about Ambassador’s “to” rather than “for”. Does our present understanding of the term enlighten, enlarge, or diminish our understanding of what it means to be an Ambassador for Christ?

There are numerous theories of the atonement and the Reformed Tradition has room for many of them without endorsing any one over all the others. Does this particular passage, however, presuppose any particular understanding of the atonement?

Luke 15:1-3, 11b-32
One problem with this reading might be that we are all too familiar with it and think we already know what it is about. How can we read and hear it as if we were hearing and reading it for the first time?

Is it too obvious that the tax collectors and the sinners are the younger son; the Pharisees and scribes are the older son; and God/Jesus is the father

Fast forwarding to the present day, where do we find ourselves in the parable?

How are we at celebrating and rejoicing? Perhaps if the church threw better parties - more of its younger children would come back home.

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