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.)
1 Kings 17:8-16 (17-24)
Now that we are in Ordinary Time we will be encountering a lectio continua of First, Second and Gospel readings from 1 Kings, Galatians, and Luke, offering the teacher and preacher an opportunity to develop and present a more narrative series of lessons and sermons that develop over several weeks.
v. 8 It is my usual practice when reading aloud a passage such as this to insert the name ”Elijah” in verse 8 so that listeners know who is being spoken of. In this case, how and when did “the word of the Lord” come to Elijah?
v. 9 Is there anything special about Zarephath or Sidon?
v. 12 Eat, drink and die.
v. 13 Do not be afraid of what? Dying? Helping Elijah?
v. 14 And once the rain comes, then what happens?
What is the point of the story? How many levels of meaning and interpretation are there?
One of the five “Hallel” psalms that concludes the Psalter
v. 3 In light of this verse, where did the widow of Zarephath place her trust? Generally speaking, where do most of us place our trust?
v. 9 Here is a verse for Bernard Madoff and the Executives at Bear Stearns.
v. 11 What does Paul mean by saying that the Gospel he proclaimed was not of “human origen”?
v. 12 Is Paul claiming that he received “the Gospel” during his Damascus Road experience, or does he have something else or more in mind?
v. 15 Roots of our Reformed doctrine of predestination and election?
v. 16 Is it true that Paul “did not confer with any human being”?
v. 17 Is there any other reference, in Paul’s writings or in Acts, of his trip “into Arabia”? Where and what is this “Arabia”?
v. 20 Might this be an example of "The Apostle doth protest too much, methinks."?
A resurrection or resuscitation Miracle. How does it prepare us for and inform us about the resurrection of Jesus?
v. 11 Is there anything special about Nain?
v. 12 Why was the death of an only son of a widow particularly tragic? Note that there was a large crowd with her. There was a also a large going with Jesus. What must it have been like for these two large crowds to meet outside the town’s gate?
v. 14 It seems odd that Jesus touched the bier rather than the dead man.
v. 16 What type of ‘fear” must have seized all of them. Who is “all of them”?
v. 16 Are “us” and “his people” the same group?
Where do we find ourselves in this story?