Lectionary Reading Introduction

This site provides something different: many sites and books provide a brief summary of the reading - so that people read out or have in their pew sheet an outline of what they are about to hear. They are told beforehand what to expect. Does this not limit what they hear the Spirit address them? This site provides something different - often one cannot appreciate what is being read because there is no context provided. This site provides the context, the frame of the reading about to be heard. It could be used as an introduction, printed on a pew sheet (acknowledged, of course), or adapted in other ways. This is an experimental venture and I will see how useful it appears.

Jeremiah 18:1-11

The Northern Kingdom of Israel has been destroyed by the Assyrians. King Josiah has started a reform movement in the southern kingdom of Judah but it is not followed by his successors Jehoahaz and Jehoiakim. In this seventh century before Christ Judah is caught up in the triangular power struggle between Assyria, Babylon, and Egypt. Jeremiah feels compelled to speak up.

Deuteronomy 30:15-20

From Deuteronomy Chapter 27, Moses has been speaking of the renewal of the covenant. In the verses preceding today’s text Moses’ concluding exhortation has spoken of the nearness of God’s word.

Philemon 1-21

This is the shortest of the epistles written by Paul. Paul is either in prison in Ephesus or in Rome. Onesimus, a slave who escaped from his Christian master, Philemon, is converted by Paul who sends Onesimus back (possibly to Colossae) with this letter. Philemon had the right to have Onesimus executed upon his return. Paul puts his appeal into the context of the Christian community that meets at Philemon’s home. For some reason the last four verses are not read in this lectionary choice.

Luke 14:25-33

We have been on Luke’s journey of Jesus to Jerusalem since 9:51. Last week’s story of the wedding banquet is followed by the parable of the great feast which we focus on in Year A. This leads us on to this week's Gospel reading.
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