21st Sunday after Pentecost [Ordinary 29B] (Year B)
- In a follow-up to Job’s complaints in last week’s lesson, God answers with a healthy dose of holy sarcasm. This is a passage that begs to be read in anything other than a monotone. God has attitude, and it should be presented that way.
- One of the “themes” that seems to run through the scripture lessons for this day is humility. If God’s words do not put us in our proper place, then I’m not sure there’s much hope for us. Can we do all the things that our Lord does? No. Should we do a better job of asking God what the Almighty desires of us (rather than constantly telling God what we think we should be able to do)? Yep.
- As you read this text, what are the images that come to mind as you hear God speaking? The vastness of the cosmos? The beauty of the sky – either at night or during the day? Perhaps you picture loud, booming thunderstorms or expansive, barren deserts? All of these images (and others you may picture) could be used in your worship display.
- This is the Psalm that Job should sing after hearing God’s answer to his (Job’s) list of complaints.
- As I suggested with the Job text, you could “illustrate” your reading of this passage using images taken from the text: light, “the heavens” (universe, stars, planets, the sky), waters, clouds, fire, flames, mountains, ocean depths, etc…
- These are wise words for anyone who serves as a church leader.
- Those who wish to follow in Jesus’ footsteps must remember to always put God first.
- The writer of the letter to the Hebrews talks a lot about the “high priest”. There are probably several people in your church who don’t really know who that is or what the role of that person (in the Ancient Jewish tradition) was. You could talk about the role of the high priest (and/or his special garments, etc) in a children’s sermon (which would be interesting for everyone). If you talk about the high priest, I recommend using some visual aids (pictures, painting, etc) to help show who and what you are describing.
- Everybody wants to rule the world, don’t they? James and John essentially ask Jesus to allow them to crown them as princes (sitting on either side of the One they know will be made King). They give no reason as to why they should be given such an honor. They also seem to completely dismiss the other 10 disciples (which does not go unnoticed). There’s a big catch, of course, that James and John probably didn’t know they would be facing with their request: “whoever wishes to be first…must be slave of all”.
- Is James and John’s questioning Jesus a little bit like sitting on Santa’s lap and asking for the impossible?
- Is there any person (alive or dead) to whom Christ is/was not a slave? Is there anyone Jesus would refuse to serve?
- If you have 3 throne-like chairs (preferably, 1 being larger than the other 2), this is a great Sunday to put them front-and-center in your worship display. If you want to “label” the seats at all, I would suggest that you place a large cross in the center (and largest) chair; then, place signs with question marks on the other two chairs.
Leave a Reply