Being Bad at Doing Good


Bible Cliff’s Notes (My dog ate my Bible!) First Reading Joel 2:23-32 Respite from the droughts and plagues of locusts has finally arrived. Rains have returned and the earth is yielding food in abundance. Time of judgment is over and God's people are now entering a time of restoration and of plenty. and Jeremiah 14:7-10, 19-22 Jeremiah is doing two things in this text. First, he offers a prayer of confession for the sinfulness of the people of Israel. He speaks on their behalf to … [Read more...]

I’m Awesomely Humble (Lectionary Study for Sunday, September 1, 2013)


Bible Cliff’s Notes (My dog ate my Bible!) First Reading Jeremiah 2:4-13 The prophet shares God’s mournful disappointment that the people of Israel have turned from God, even after being delivered from the desert into a land of plenty. Their transgressions are twofold: forsaking God and trying to create new false gods for themselves. and Proverbs 25:6-7 A wise call to humility, the author of the proverb warns that it’s better to place yourself in a lower social standing and be … [Read more...]

Elijah to the Baalites: “Your God Sucks!” (Lectionary Texts for Sun., June 2nd)

baal elijah

Bible Cliff’s Notes (My dog ate my Bible!) First Reading 1 Kings 18:20-21, (22-29), 30-39 Elijah challenges the prophets of the god Baal to a standoff. Both will prepare offerings to their gods, and will call on them to consume the offerings with fire. Baal does nothing, much to the chagrin of his prophets, but the God of Abraham consumes the offering with fire. And Elijah kind of rubs their noses in it. Gospel Luke 7:1-10 Jesus heals a Roman soldier’s slave. The Jewish people … [Read more...]

I’m a Loser, Baby: Lectionary Texts for March 24, 2013


Bible Cliff’s Notes (My dog ate my Bible!) ∞ Gospel Luke 22:14-23:56 (long/full version) Luke 23:1-49 (short version) Jesus is tried and crucified. First Reading No “first reading” this week. Why? Ask the Lectionary people! But my guess is that it has to do with how long the Gospel text is. The long version is 114 verses. Psalm Psalm 31:9-16 I’m a loser, God. But I trust you. Second Reading Philippians 2:5-11 Empty yourselves out, humble yourself and you … [Read more...]

You’d Better Recognize: Lectionary Texts for March 17, 2013


Bible Cliff’s Notes (My dog ate my Bible!) Gospel John 12:1-8 Mary anoints Jesus’ feet with expensive oil. First Reading Isaiah 43:16-21 I’m doing a new thing; don’t you recognize it? Psalm Psalm 126 God, change our circumstances for the better. Let those who plant with tears reap the harvest with joyful shouts. Second Reading Philippians 3:4b-14 Forget what’s behind; reach ahead. Lose everything you have for the sake of Christ. ∞ WTF? (Breaking down … [Read more...]