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Lectionary 340: Faith

February 17, 2017

340.docx-17

Lectionary 340.  Scripture.  Feb.18: Hebrews 11:1-7. Psalm 145:2-3,4-5,10-11. Mark 9:2-13:

We return to the Epistle to the Hebrews for our lectionary readings after having read from Genesis for the past two weeks. The content is a type of summary giving us three good models from Genesis who have lived a life of faithfulness to the Lord. Featured are Abel, Enoch, and Noah.  Even though Enoch has but one verse in the Bible many legendary tales about him persist in the apocryphal Jewish writings before the time of Christ.  The Epistle of Jude will also mention him!

The most important message of this selection from Hebrews is the description and examples of faith he develops in the seven verses of our reading for the day. I like the following description similar to a definition of what faith consists of: “the confident assurance concerning what we hope for, and conviction about the things we do not see…anyone who comes to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.”  What a succinct clear declaration about the nature of faith!

Psalm 145 begins the last series of hymns of great praise leading up to the grand closing of Psalm 150 with its Alleluias! We join in with our response: “I will praise your name forever Lord.  Every day I will bless you!”

Mark is the first Gospel that narrates the “Kairos” event of the Transfiguration of Jesus.  Matthew and Luke will build upon it with their own theologies.  Peter, James, and John are with Jesus on the unnamed mount where this happens.  Jesus is surrounded by Moses and Elijah, the prophets of instruction and revelation as well as miracles.  I look upon this theophany as a way of helping these three apostles to get through the sufferings and death of Jesus on the Cross. It made me think of Jesus own words elsewhere he says, God is a God of the living!  The resurrection is testimony to the everlasting life of Jesus and our own hope to be a part of it.  Amen.

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