October 29, 2020

The Adventurous Lectionary – November 8, 2020 – Pentecost 23 Joshua 24:1-3a, 14-25; Psalm 78:1-7; I Thessalonians 4:13-18; Matthew 25:1-13 What does it mean to be a monotheist? What does it mean to believe in God, especially when many conservative Christians have embraced Christian nationalism and elevated Donald Trump to be defender of Christianity? What are the practical implications of following the One True God rather than the many deities of our own creation? The objects of our faith, what… Read more

October 22, 2020

The Adventurous Lectionary – November 1, 2020 – Pentecost 22 Joshua 3:7-17; Psalm 1071-7, 33-37; I Thessalonians 2:9-13; Matthew 23:1-12 On the verge the of USA Election, this Sunday’s scriptures paint a variety of pictures of God’s involvement in the raising up of leaders and in our institutional and corporate decision-making. The Israelites believed in divinely chosen leaders. The idea of divinely-anointed leaders is repugnant to us, especially when church leaders connect divine anointing with narrow political ideologies and morally… Read more

October 17, 2020

CXCIV The Good News is Here (10/17) The time is fulfilled, the realm of God is near, repent and believe the good news. (Mark1:14-15) These brief words introduce Jesus’ public ministry. Jesus is telling the world that now is the day of salvation and wholeness. It’s time to change your life and trust that God is going to do something important and good in your life. We need good news these days! Of course, we need good news every day…. Read more

October 16, 2020

The Adventurous Lectionary – October 25, 2020 – Pentecost 21 Deuteronomy 34:1-12 Psalm 90:1-6, 13-17 1 Thessalonians 2:1-8 Matthew 22:34-46 With the election just over a week away, this Sunday’s readings point us beyond the individual self – and our individual life histories – to identification with God’s Self and the well-being of others long after we have left the scene. They move us from self-interest to world loyalty and from short term goals toward the wellbeing of generations decades… Read more

October 8, 2020

The Adventurous Lectionary – October 18, 2020 – Pentecost 20 Exodus 33:12-23, Psalm 99, I Thessalonians 1:1-10, Matthew 22:15-22 Today’s readings join witness, politics, and mysticism. The encounter with God relativizes all other demands and requires us to seek justice, to create the foundations in society to promote wholeness and holiness for everyone. The Exodus passage joins mysticism and politics. Moses is in the business of nation-building, seeking to create a nation guided by divine principles. God assures him that… Read more

October 1, 2020

The Adventurous Lectionary – The Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost – October 11, 2020 Exodus 32:1-14, Psalm 106:1-6, 19-23, Philippians 4:4-9, Matthew 22:1-14 What happens when we turn away from God and follow the devices and desires of our own hearts? How does God respond to our waywardness? Are there ways that we can stay on the path, knowing from time to time we will miss the mark? As a spiritual guide once said, the path of faith is a constant… Read more

September 24, 2020

Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost – October 4, 2020 Exodus 20:1-4, 7-9, 12-20; Psalm 19, Philippians 3:4-14, Matthew 21:33-46 While there are many entry points for this Sunday’s readings, I will focus on Philippians 3:4-14 as the primary lens for interpreting the other passages. Looking toward the far horizons, running the race with imperfection and hope, enables us to follow divine guidance (The Ten Commandments) as well as respond to the serious consequences of our responses to God. (Matthew 21:33-46) Good… Read more

September 17, 2020

The Adventurous Lectionary – The Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost – September 27, 2020 Exodus 17:1-7, Psalm 78:1-4, 12-16, Philippians 2:1-13, Matthew 21:23-32 It has been said that the question, “do you believe in God?” is less important than “what kind of God do you believe in?” Our images of God shape our understanding of our personal agency, hope for the future, authority, approach to diversity, and political perspectives. Some images of God may promote violence, passivity, and authoritarian approaches to… Read more

September 10, 2020

The Adventurous Lectionary – The Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost – September 20, 2020 Exodus 16:2-15, Psalm 105:1-6, 37-45, Philippians 1:21-30, Matthew 20:1-16 The times are in upheaval for persons and congregations. Many congregations are considering returning to public in-person worship and are feeling overwhelmed by details and concerns about congregants’ health. We are also concerned about our congregational health – most congregations are struggling with budgets and pondering reducing staff in the next few years. One of the most important… Read more

September 3, 2020

The Adventurous Lectionary – September 13, 2020 – Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost Exodus 14:19-31, Psalm114, Romans 14:1-12, Matthew 18:21-35 Today’s readings explore the interdependent themes of forgiveness, pluralism, and deliverance. Our dependence and interdependence with God and others are the framework for understanding the spiritual adventure. Still, the readings are challenging, first, because of the relationship of deliverance and violence in the Genesis story and, second, in the contrasting scandal of Jesus’ demand for forgiveness in our current polarizing, unforgiving… Read more

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