Thursday, May 26, 2011

Lectionary Ruminations for Sunday, May 29, 2011, the Sixth Sunday of Easter (Year A)

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.)  Lectionary Ruminations is also cross posted on my personal blog, Summit to Shore.

v. 22 Last week we learned that Paul stood by while Stephen was stoned.  Now, Paul is preaching in Athens before the Areopagus.  The transition and the symbolism are startling. 

v. 23 If Paul were to walk through  one of our cities, what would he identify as the objects of our worship?

vs. 24-29 What is the content of Paul’s preaching?  What does he not say?  Is Paul’s sermon more Theistic than Christocentric?

v. 24 Can we still talk about God, who made the world and everything in it, without positing a six day creation and getting sidetracked into the creationism/evolution debate?

v. 26 Who is this ancestor?

v. 27 What does it mean to search and grope for God?  Is this still a valid argument in the post-modern world?

v. 28 An appeal to secular/pagan poets.  Have we in the church forgotten how to employ the artistic expressions of contemporary culture?

v. 31 Bote that Paul refers to a “man” God raised from the dead.  Paul seems not to here assert any divinity to this “man”.

v. 8 This sounds like, and could be used as, a Call to Worship.

v. 10 What does it mean to be tested and tried? What testing and trials might the Psalmist be referring to?

v. 11 Last week the net was hidden.  This week, the people have been in the net.

v. 12 What and where is the spacious palce?

v. 13 What does it mean to pay vows?

v. 16 Another Call to Worship? What does iot mean to fear God?

v. 20 Does God ever reject prayer?  Can steadfast love ever be removed?

v. 13 Is this a rhetorical question, or what?    It sometimes seems, in life, that no good deed goes unpunished.

v. 14 Who are “they”?  What do “they” fear?

v. 15 How does one sanctify Christ in their heart?

v. 17 Does the reason for suffering in any way affect the moral value of our suffering?

v. 18 What does this verse say about the nature of the resurrection?

v. 19 “He descended into hell”?  “He descended to the dead”?

v.21 Some interesting words about baptism.  Just as there are many understandings of the Lord’s Supper, are there also many understandings of Baptism?

John 14:15-21
v. 15 A big “if”?  What is the nature of this love?  What are Christ’s commandments?

v. 16 Is Christ’s intercession contingent on our keeping his commandments?  Why, in the NRSV, is “Advocate” capitalized?  Can we read and interpret this verse without being informed by the Doctrine of the Trinity?

v. 17 Notice that in the NRSV “Spirit” is capitalized.

v. 18 “Orphaned” could be an often overlooked but powerful image. Is Jesus talking about the coming of the Spirit, the Second Coming, or something altogether different?

v. 20 What day is “that day”?

v. 21 Is this free grace or does there seem to be an element of works righteousness, an element of conditionality?

In addition to serving as the half time Designated Pastor of North Church Queens and writing Lectionary Ruminations, I also tutor part time.  If you or someone you know needs a tutor, or if you would like to be a tutor, check our my WyzAnt  page and follow the appropriate links.

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