Monday, April 20, 2015

Lectionary Notes for Third Sunday of Easter, Year B

Readings for 3rd Sunday of Easter, 4/19/15:
Acts 3:12-19, Psalm 4, 1 John 3:1-7, Luke 24:36b-48

Acts 3:12-19:
  • Anger - sometimes Peter sounds so accusatory to me, especially in his early preaching, as if still so fresh from losing Jesus as a daily physical presence in their midst, he's looking for someone to blame. He does make concession in verses 17-19.
  • Peter's words are also interesting considering his own role in Jesus' trial and death. Do you think he's speaking to himself as much as to the crowd?
  • This scene takes place just after Peter heals a crippled beggar. Healing was central to Jesus' ministry. How do Peter and Jesus differ in their style of healing?
Psalm 4:
  • "how long" - the human cry against injustice, the human plea for God to intervene.
  • A theme of this psalm: God hears us. Sometimes we doubt this - wonder if God is listening. The psalmist, with his own doubts, is still sure in his heart that God hears and listens. Are you?
1 John 3:1-7:
  • We are God's children. The author sticks with this theme throughout. More than creator and created, more than master and servant. We are parent and child, a relationship that communicates God's overflowing, unconditional love toward us.
  • Verses 2 and 3 are traditionally used as part of funeral liturgies. What we will be has not yet been revealed. So much potential that is inside of us. What is the best you can imagine yourself being? What is God revealing you to be?
  • "no one who abides in him sins; no one who sins has either seen him or known him." What do you think the author means by this? Obviously, Christians continue to sin. Do we not abide in God? Sin can but distance between us and God, I think, but does it keep us from seeing or knowing God? I think God can bridge even such gaps between us, and seeks to do so.
Luke 24:36b-48:
  • Luke presents instead of just a doubting Thomas, a whole group of disciples who are frightened and terrified, which seems a likely scenario to me. What would it take to convince you that someone had risen from the dead?
  • Jesus eating fish is a symbolic proof that he is alive and real - not just a spiritual appearance - eating symbolizes his human body appearance for Luke - that's why it is emphasized that Jesus was hungry and ate in their presence.
  • "Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures." - I love this verse, and have a jealousy about it - what did Jesus say to them? I've always been a questioning, looking for answers sort of believer. Not a doubter, but a seeker. I'd like a Q and A session with Jesus like this.

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