Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Lent 4: John 3:14-21 and Ephesians 2:1-10 (Year B)

I offer three posts for the RCL readings for this Sunday:

John 3:1-21
Little tidbit:
ο διδασκαλος ("the teacher", vs 2)  Nicodemus calls Jesus "a" teacher; Jesus calls Nicodemus "THE teacher."  Obviously Jesus is catching Nicodemus in his words!
A laser focus on John 3:16
A little tidbit
εχη :  STOP.  read carefully: This is a present tense verb.  This means that we HAVE the eternal life, not we will have, but we HAVE the eternal life.  In John's Gospel life begins here and in as we, through faith, live in the son.

For those who want to work with the lovely Ephesians passage:

Lent 4, Narrative Lectionary: Matthew 25:1-13 and Matthew 25:14-30 (Year 1)

This week the narrative lectionary offers two choices.  For both I've updated my previous posts.

Parable of the Talents
ταλαντον ("talent", a measure of gold weight worth roughly a million dollars or 20 years worth of a standard persons wages, 25:15).  While this parable may produce guilt and anxiety in us that we don't do enough, it is worth remembering that anyone who gives away 5 talents to his slaves (not friends, slaves) doesn't value money they way the rest of us do.  5 talents would be 5-10 million dollars; 100 years worth of human labor entrusted!

Parable of the Bridesmaids
A long explanation of why Bridesmaids is a better translation than virgin for παρθενοις.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Lent 3: Exodus 20 and John 2:13-22 (Year B)

Here are links to the OT and Gospel passage for this Revised Common Lectionary readings for this week (Year B):

John 2:13-22
οικος του εμποριον (house of market; 2:16)  German has a nice word:  Kaufhaus, in which the word for shopping center contains the word house.  Since we don't in English, the writers drop it and say, "market" instead of the literal "house of market."  While our churches today may not be a house of market, I wonder if this really is the alternative to church:  a few more hours to purchase things on TV, at the mall or on the internet; a few more hours to work; a few more hours to pay bills.

Exodus 20
אנכי ("anocki", meaning "I", 20.2)  The first word of the ten commandments have nothing to do with rules, but God affirming his role as their savior and Lord.