Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Lectionary Notes for Trinity Sunday, Year A

Readings for Trinity Sunday, 6/15/14:
Genesis 1:1-2:4a, Psalm 8, 2 Corinthians 13:11-13, Matthew 28:16-20

Genesis 1:1-2:4a:
  • This is the creation story - an interesting selection for Trinity Sunday! This is the first creation story - not the one with Adam and Eve and the serpent from later in Chapter 2. I love the creation story. I also believe in evolution. I don't find them to be contradictory. I asked my sixth grade Sunday School teacher how the world could be made in 7 days if dinosaurs were extinct so long before people were around. He said, "God's time isn't the same as our time, and a day in Genesis 1 isn't necessarily supposed to be a day like our days." I found that pretty satisfying. Why do we have to make it one or the other? Is our faith not strong enough to believe in evolution?
  • Notice the goodness of creation in God's view. Everything God creates is good. EVERYTHING. One of my colleagues who was a probationary elder in the UMC as I wasgot critiqued in her BOOM interview because she argued that humans are essentially good - her theology wasn't "original sin" enough for some. But who can argue with God? God created us - and declared us good.
Psalm 8:
  • What a great psalm! Chalk full of good lines. 'How majestic is thy name in all the earth!' The words to one of my favorite praise songs. But beyond this opening line: 
  • "What are human beings that you are mindful of them, mortals that you care for them? Yet you have made them a little lower than God . . . " I think this verse is one of life's deepest questions. This is maybe more detailed then 'why are we here?', but it is close. It presumes God, but asks, 'why has God made us?' 'Why does God care about us?' 'What's the point?' I hate not having the answers sometimes, but I think it is part of what makes God God and me not God!
  • "Dominion." This is a loaded word when it comes to our care of the earth and all that is in it. What does dominion mean? Domination? Responsible stewardship? License to do as we will? Care for our human needs above all else? As a vegetarian, and an earth lover, my senses are aware of a word like dominion - just us use with authority from God with great care!
2 Corinthians 13:11-13:
  • A short and sweet selection - "live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you." Ah, what a prayer. Paul encourages us to "agree with one another" and to practice peace. We need those words, don't we? Are we living in peace? Do you have peace in your home? Your heart? Your community?
Matthew 28:16-20:
  • The Great Commission - a selection for Trinity Sunday because of the words commanding that we baptize, as we now do, "in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit."
  • "make disciples of all nations." This is a key verse for evangelism or proselytizing, and, as usual, is used by Christians differently depending on understandings of scripture and interpretation. The word for disciples is mathe^teusate, which literally means pupils, or students. What does it mean to be a student of Jesus? How do you make others into students of Jesus?
  • The disciples are to teach others to "obey everything that [Jesus has] commanded" them. Not just to believe in Jesus - but to be Jesus-like and follow Jesus-like teachings.
  • "I am with you always." I think those are some of the most comforting words in the whole Bible.

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