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. 1 These are the words of Jeremiah, not the words of the LORD. Where was Jeremiah at the time he wrote the letter?
v. 4 Even though these are the words of Jeremiah’s letter, his letter contains the words of the Lord. Note who has sent the exiles into exile.
v. 6 Shall the wives be chosen only from among the exile community or shall they also be chosen from among the indigenous inhabitants? What does history tell us, if anything?
v. 7 Seeking the welfafre of the city where God has sent them, and praying to the LORD on its behalf, means, in essence,seeking the welfare and praying for enemies and captors (or former enemies and hosts?).
Over the past three weeks, the readings have progressed from pre-destruction, lament over the destruction, and post destruction of Jerusalem. This broad sweep invites us to reflect on how Jeremiah’s preaching has changed. It might sound trite, but might we say that before the destruction he afflicted the comfortable while after the destruction he comforted the afflicted?
vs. 1-2 These verse could form the basis of a Call to Worship.
v. 3 In light of the Jeremiah Reading, do you think God’s enemies really cringe? Who are God’s enemies. Is it safe to assume that Israel’s enemies are God’s enemies? Is it safe to assume that our enemies are God’s enemies?
v. 4 Does the reference to “All the earth” refer to only human beings?
v. 5 What has God done? This is the second occurrence in the NRSV translation of this Psalm of “awesome”. The first occurrence was in v. 3.
v. 6 What is being recounted here?
v. 9 In light of the Jeremiah Reading, while we might be captives and exiles, at least we are alive?
v. 10 In the wilderness, Israel tested God. Now God tests Israel? How is silver “tried”?
v. 11 Is this a reference to bondage in Egypt or Babylonian captivity?
v. 12 This Psalm sounds to me more like a Psalm celebrating the Exodus. If so, why would the RCL folk choose to pair it with the Jeremiah Reading?
v. 8 What does Paul mean by “Remember”? Compared to later creedal statements, Paul’s “gospel” is basic, no frills, and almost void of doctrine.
v. 9 Does Paul mean to suggest that while he might be “chained like a criminal” he is not a criminal?
v. 10 the ears of Presbyterians and other Reformed Christians ought to perk up when they hear Paul’s reference to “the elect”.
v. 11 Why has this verse not become associated with baptismal liturgies?
v. 14 How does the “remind” connect with the “remember of v. 8? What is the “this” to “remind them of”? Does Paul really have the moral authority to admonish others not to “wrangle over words”? In light of this blog column, when does “Chewing on the Word” and ruminating about the Lectionary Readings become wrangling?
v. 15 How does one rightly explain the word of truth? How would Paul define “the word of truth”?
v. 11 What is the significance of the fact that Jesus was “On the way to Jerusalem”? What is significant about the region “between Samaria and Galilee”?
v. 12 Is there any symbolic significance to there being “ten lepers”? How can ten lepers both approach and keep their distance?
v. 13 This verse reminds me of The Jesus Prayer of Hesychiasm and the Philokelia.
v. 14 Why does this verse say Jesus saw the ten lepers rather than hear them since they were calling out to him? Why would Jesus send the lepers off to the priests rather than healing them at that moment?
v. 15 Is one out of ten lepers a tithe?
v. 16 What is the significance that the one leper who returned was a Samaritan? Can we assume anything about the ethnic or religious identity of the nine who did not return? Does v. 18 shed any light on the question?
v. 19 Since v. 14 says “they were made clean,” can we assume that the faith of the others who were made clean, presumably the other nine, also made them well?
It has nothing to do with the lectionary readings, but this particular Sunday will be 101010 (October 10, 2010). In addition to posting Lectionary Ruminations every Thursday on Presbytery Bloggers, I also blog about a variety of topics on my personal blog, Summit to Shore.