Thursday, January 3, 2013

Lectionary Ruminations for Sunday, January 6, 2013, the Epiphany of the Lord (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 may be linked to the NRSV via the oremus Bible Browser.) 

FirstReading Isaiah 60:1-6
60:1 While this is a very appropriate text for Epiphany, what was the original light Isaiah was referring to?

60:2 How do we deal with cultural pejorative association with darkness?

60:3 Does “nation” refer to political entities or peoples?

60:4 Where were the sons and daughters?

60:5 How do we read and interpret this when humans have overfished most species?

60:5 Does this passage shed light on the reading from Matthew, or should we interpret the Matthew Reading as Midrash on this Isaiah 60:1-6?

72:2 What does it mean that God gives the king justice?

72:2, 4 I wish Congress would read these verses!

72:6 Are you familiar with the King’s connection to the land in the grail legend?

72:10 Do you think this verse justifies this Psalm being associated with Epiphany?

72:12-14 More verses for 99% or 47%?

3:1 So Paul was a prisoner for the Gentiles but not the Jews?

3:2 Paul seems to be emphasizing his ministry to the Gentiles while not saying anything about the Jews.

3:3 What mystery is Paul talking about?

3:4 What is the mystery of Christ?  Why all this talk about mystery.  Is Paul trying to appeal to Gentile mystery religions?

3:5 Note the plural apostles and porphets.  Paul places himself in a company.  He is not alone.

3:6 What body?

3:7 How does one become a servant of the gospel?

3:8 I would rather be the least of all the saints than the greatest of all the sinners, but are not all saints forgiven sinners?

3:9 If you know the plan of the mystery, then is it still a mystery?  This mystery was hidden “in” God?

3:10 Is this one of the earliest uses of the “church”?  Rulers and authorities are in the heavenly places?

3:11 Do “eternal purposes” require a doctrine of predestination or a sort of Christian fatalism?  Where does free will fit in here?

3:12 I like the note of “boldness and confidence” rather than the shame and doubt.

2:1 When was the time of King Herod?   Forgetting what you think you know from familiar carols, according to this Scripture, how many wise men were there?  Must the original “Magi” be translated “men”?  Where in the East might they have come from?

2:2 What does it mean that the Magi saw a star at its rising?

2:3 I can understand why Herod would be frightened, but why would all Jerusalem be frightened?

2:4 Are the chief priests and scribes in any way the Jewish equivalent of the pagan Magi?

2:6 What prophet is being quoted?

2:7 Why did Herod practice secrecy?

2:8 What is the meaning of “sent”?

2:9 Do you know how to use a sextant?  What sort of stars rise, move, and then stop?

2:10  When was the last time you were overwhelmed with joy?

2:11 House?  What happened to the stable?  How many treasure chests might there have been?  What is the symbolism, if any, of the gold, frankincense, and myrrh?  Does the fact that three types of gifts are mentioned mean that there had to be three magi?

2:12 Have you ever been warned in a dream?  What other dreams and how many other dreams are there, in any, in the Gospel According to Matthew.  What might Morton Kelsey, John Sanford, Joseph Campbell and/or Carl Jung have said about this dream?

 ADDENDUM
This is the first Sunday since 2008 that Epiphany falls on a Sunday.  The Lectionary Readings for Epiphany are the same for Years A, B, and C.  It has been my desire, when the service of Epiphany is at night, to combine it with a star watching party including local astronomers with their telescopes, a desire not yet realized.

 How long after the fact do we include concerns in the Prayers of the People?  It has been a few weeks since the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown Connecticut.  How many Churches continue to include Newtown in their Sunday public prayers?  Here is a link to the first petition of my Prayers of the People the Sunday after Newtown.  The petition is original.

In addition to serving as the half time 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 out my WyzAnt page and follow the appropriate links.
 
I have been posting Lectionary Ruminations to Presbyterian Bloggers for nearly three years.  I will attempt to continue posting through the Scripture Readings for February 10, 2013, Transfiguration of the Lord.   I may continue posting Lectionary Ruminations to my personal blog, Summitto Shore but not here.  If you have been following these posts, please migrate over to my personal blog.

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