It took a year to read the Bible, then almost 9 months to read the Apocrypha. Now, I'm going to try to offer reflections on the Narrative Lectionary. But, I won't be posting daily--at least, for a while.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Reflection on readings for March 12

Give ear to my prayer, O God;
do not hide yourself from my supplication.
(Psalm 55:1)

Numbers 16:41-18:32
The whole congregation rebelled against Moses and Aaron saying they were responsible for the deaths of the dissenters. The Lord then laid a  plague on the people. Moses ordered Aaron to atone for the people. The plague was stopped.

The Lord outlined a way to stop the complaints by getting evidence of who the Lord had chosen to be in covenant with.

Ordination, what does it mean to be a leader? Whose authority is the leader protecting? What is the leader's goal?

Mark 16:1-20
When the sabbath was over, the three women who had witnessed the crucifixion brought spices to the tomb to anoint the body of Jesus. On the way, they wondered who would roll away the heavy stone blocking entrance to the tomb. When they got there, they saw that the stone had already been rolled away. Entering the tomb, they were frightened when they saw a young man sitting there. He told them not to be afraid and for them to go tell the disciples that he would be in Galilee when they got there. They were too afraid to tell anybody.

Morna Hooker, in her commentary on Mark, points out the irony. Throughout this gospel, Jesus has been telling witnesses not to say anything about what they have just seen, and they disobey him. Now, when he says it is time to tell, the witnesses are too scared to say anything.

Some ancient authorities end the Gospel of Mark at this point. Others add verses telling that the women did, after all, tell the disciples. Still other authorities add other verses relating an appearance by Jesus to Mary Magdalene and that nobody believed that he was alive and that she had seen him. He also appeared to the eleven disciples and upbraided them for that unbelief.

Psalm 55:1-23

Proverbs 11:7

Prayer for Today: O God, give us the will and the courage to tell others about what you have done for us, how you have changed our lives, how you have given us support. Amen.

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