Showing posts from June, 2016

The Seventh Sunday after Pentecost, Proper 9, 3 July 2016

The Seventh Sunday after Pentecost, Proper 7, 3 July 2016 Track One: I I Kings 5:1-14 Psalm 30 Track Two: Isaiah 66:10-14 Psalm 66:1-8 Galatians 6:[1-6] 7-16 Saint Luke 10:1-11, 16-20 Background: Aram Our connections to this land are several. It figures into the saga of Abraham moving from Ur of Chaldees across the Fertile Crescent into ancient Canaan. In today’s readings it is the homeland of Naaman, a commander in the army of the King of Aram. The name, “Aram” probably meant “highlands” in contrast to the name Canaan, or “low lands.” It extended from the mountains that marked the border with the areas settled by the Phoenicians, or modern day Lebanon, across to the Euphrates River, or the borders of Assyria. As with most of the states in the Levant, it was subject as a vassal to the more powerful nations to the east, the Neo-Assyrian Empire or the Neo-Babylonian Empire (911-539 BCE). Mentions of the name in various forms dates back to ca. 2300 BCE,

The Sixth Sunday after Pentecost, Proper 8, 26 June 2016

The Sixth Sunday after Pentecost, Proper 8, 26 June 2016 Track One: II Kings 2:1-2, 6-14 Psalm 77:1-2, 11-20 Track 2 I Kings 19:15-16, 19-21 Psalm 16 Galatians 5:1, 13-25 Saint Luke 9:51-62 Background: Elijah and Elisha Since both tracks are focused on the prophetic work or one or the other of these men, it might be good to point out an excellent study of their prophetic work seen in the context of what is viewed as a historic review of the Kings of Judah and Israel. That these background characters, with certain legendary elements to them, gives us a screen through which to see the sacred history of kings, and the attempt to tie their history to the worship of YHWH. In the context of king and prophet the prophet is always striving for the God of Israel and providing context, history, and interpretation to the acts of the kings. Such commentary and pronouncements on their part, however, to do not reveal a static understanding of the state of the relig