Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
This Sunday we will continue the sermon series, “A Place at the Table” with our look at the second section of the Great Thanksgiving (the prayer I say and the congregation responds to as we prepare to receive the bread and cup). This Sunday’s subtitle is “Invitation to the Table”. The theme verse for all four weeks is from Paul’s letter to the church in Corinth.
1 Corinthians 10:16-17 – See last week’s comments about these verses. Note that the order of cup and bread is reversed from what I say in the Great Thanksgiving which is bread before cup. Check out 1 Corinthians 11:23-26, which has the bread first followed by the cup. Why the difference?
Luke 22:14-23 – This is Luke’s version of the Last Supper. Check out Mark 14:22-25 and Matthew 26: 26-30 for their versions. Count the cups in Luke’s version. As I understand it a traditional Passover meal had four cups and the two cups that Luke has may relate to the second and fourth cups. Jesus takes a traditional celebration (Passover) and transforms it into a simple service that recalls his sacrifice on the cross for the salvation of all. Two common elements that are consumed every day in Jesus’ time take on new meaning. This simple act of remembrance invites us to become part of the story and that story transforms those who participate. What does Communion (also known as the Eucharist, the Lord’s Supper, the Last Supper, and Holy Mass) mean to you?
Our lectionary texts for this week are:
Isaiah 1:1, 10-20 – The vision of Isaiah son of Amoz. God challenges the people of Israel and Judah to defend their ways and their sacrifices, which in reality have no meaning. This is a court scene in which God is the prosecutor and the people are the defendants.
Psalm 50:1-8, 22-23 – Another court scene with God as prosecutor and judge. A verse that is left out, verse 9, has a famous, and somewhat humorous, rendition in the old Revised Standard Version, “I (God) will accept no bull from your house.”
Genesis 15:1-6 – God’s covenant with Abram that Abram’s descendants will out number the stars.
Psalm 33:12-22 – Worldly power will be in vain for only God and God’s steadfast love can save us.
Hebrews 11:1-3, 8-16 – The preacher’s take on the meaning of faith and the example of Abraham.
Luke 12:32-40 – Two lesson here: “Where your treasure is, there your heart will be” and “be ready for the Son of Many is coming at an unexpected hour.” What do you do with your wealth and are you ready for Jesus?
Have a great week serving God by serving others.
Peace in Christ,
Pastor Gary Taylor