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, September 17, 2014

Reflection on readings for September 17

Hear my cry, O God;
listen to my prayer.
(Psalm 61:1)

Isaiah 25:1-28:13
They have heard Isaiah's prayer of gratitude for their deliverance. He now tells them that the Lord will make for all peoples a banquet. Two things are important about this banquet. First, it really is a banquet. The menu includes rich food and fine wines. Second, it's not just for them; it's a feast for all peoples. This banquet takes the place of the negative force that death has held over them, swallows it up forever. Walter Brueggemann reminds us of New Testaments allusions to this promise in 1 Corinthians 15:54 and Revelation 21:4 (Isaiah 1-39, WestminsterJohnKnoxPress).

With victory comes a call for judgment against foes. Why is it sometimes hard for us to accept blessings from God without our expecting God to punish people that we consider sinners? Thinking about the metaphor "Leviathan," I am considering that perhaps I would find it easier to think of this punishment as against sin rather than as against specific wrongdoers.

Galatians 3:10-22
Again, Paul is stressing that Gentiles to not have to first become Jews before being accepted as Christians. God accepts Gentiles into the family. For example, God granted acceptance to Abraham generations before giving the law to Moses.

Psalm 61:1-8

Proverbs 23:17-18
Do not let your hearts envy sinners,
but always continue in the fear of the Lord.
Surely there is a future,
and your hope will not be cut off.

Prayer for Today: O Lord our God, remind us that you are God of other people, too. Amen.

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