Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Readings for Sunday, February 25, 2018

Hello Everyone,

During Lent, Grey Eagle UMC and Peace United Church have embarked on a worship series titled "The Road to Light". For an complete overview please follow this link: "The Road to Light"

Tomorrow night, Wednesday, February 21, both churches will have "Coffee, Cookies, and Conversation" as we discuss this past Sunday's Gospel Lesson and my sermon "Fuel for the Journey". Join us at Peace United Church at 6 pm in the Fellowship Hall or at Grey Eagle UMC at 7:30 pm, also in the Fellowship Hall.

This coming Sunday our theme is "Mapping the Journey". Here is what I wrote in the synopsis of "The Road to Light":

"Jesus lays out the journey, the journey that will reveal our SIN and show us the alternate, available path, the path to light. The journey involves betrayal, suffering, rejection, murder, and resurrection. Along the way, Jesus challenges us to see with new eyes, hear with new ears, and to take up our cross and follow the road that leads to Light and Life."

The Lectionary Readings for this week are:

Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16 – God tells Abram, who is 99 years old, that they are to be in covenant and God will bless Abram with numerous descendants. God changes Abram’s name to Abraham and, in the last two verses, changes Sarai’s name to Sarah. God also promises to give Sarah, who is 90, and Abraham a son. In the skipped verses, the sign of the covenant was for all the males in Abraham’s tribe to be circumcised (ouch). We also don’t read the part where Abraham falls on his face and laughs.

Psalm 22:23-31 – Jesus quotes the beginning of this Psalm while hanging on the cross in Matthew 27:46, “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” Many in Jesus’ day would have known that the end of this psalm is a positive affirmation that God will save all. “All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the Lord; all the families of the nations shall worship before him.” It proclaims that even the dead in the earth and future unborn generations will worship and serve God.

Romans 4:13-25 – Paul writes to the church in Rome about their inclusion in God’s promise to Abraham. Abraham trusted God and that was enough for God who declared him righteous. This was not the work of the Law, which Abraham didn’t have, but the work of faith.

Mark 8:27-38 - The first four verses are not part of the Lectionary but I will include them on Sunday. In verses 27-30, 
Jesus and the disciples take a much need break from their ministry and head north to camp. Jesus ask “Who do people say that I am?” After offering answers about what others were saying about Jesus and having Jesus egg them on, Peter says “You are the Messiah” (Christ or Anointed One). Yeah for Peter. Then, in verses 31-38, Jesus begins to tell the disciples what it means to be the Messiah. It means suffering, rejection, being killed, and resurrection. Peter says “No, you can’t do that” and Jesus tells Satan to get behind. Calling the crowds he explains what it means to be his follower: deny themselves, take up their cross, and losing their life.

Peace in Christ,
Pastor Gary Taylor

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