Thursday, July 08, 2010

Lectionary Ruminations for Sunday, July 11, 2010, the Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time (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.)

v. 7 How many people know what a plumb is, what it does, and what it is for?

v. 10 Does the conflict between Amaziah and Amos reflect the conflict between the exoteric and esoteric forms of the Jewish faith?

v. 11Amos has apparently spoken truth to power. Who are the prophets in our day speaking truth to power?

v. 12 As a member of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) I read as a biblical warrant for maintaining the Washington Office of the church.

v. 14 Is this an example of feigned humility?

v. 17 This is not good news, nor the sort of news any political figure would want to hear.

Psalm 82:1-8
v. 1 How do we as monotheists handle passages like this, a passage that speaks of “the divine council” and God holding judgment “in the midst of the gods”?

v. 2 Shall we read this verse as a prayer having been answered by the prophecy of Amos?

v. 6 Who is speaking? Who are “gods”?

v. 8 When we pray this prayer, are we not asking for God to judge us as harshly as other countries?

Colossians 1:1-14
v. 1 Who is the real author of this letter, Paul or Timothy?

v. 2 Is there a distinction between “the saints” and “faithful brothers and sisters in Christ” or is this an example of multiple references to the same group?

v. 7 This is a tangential question, but what else do we know about Epaphras?

Vs. 11-12 This blessing could be used as a benediction.

v. 25 What is the meaning of “test”?

v. 28 This “right” answer seems to point toward praxis, that is right belief leading to right actions, rather than focusing on mere orthodox belief as the test of faith. Note the language: “Do” this and you shall live, not “Believe” this.

v. 29 How often, and in what ways, do we seek to “justify” ourselves rather than relying on God to justify us?

vs. 30-37 Have we heard this parable too many times to hear it as if we are hearing it for the first time and to hear it in new, fresh, and enlightening ways? How can we hear it anew every time we hear it?

I apologize for being a day late and a dollar short with this week’s Lectionary Ruminations. My usual posting day, Thursday, was a travelling day as I trekked from the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) General Assembly (GA) in Minneapolis to home in New York City. The time constraints of observing the GA and then blogging about what I observed on my personal blog, Summit to Shore, left little opportunity to post to Lectionary Ruminations before now.

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