Lectionary Scriptures and Comments

Archive for the ‘liberal church’ Category

Aside

Psalms Are Not Always Calming 070312

 

This blog comes to you from the people at Peace Mennonite Church of Columbia, MO

www.peacemennonitechurch.net

Psalms Are Not Always Calming 070312

Psalm 52 sounds more like a protest against an opposing tyrant, a mighty one. It raises a question I’ve had for some time—if my family and I were even poorer than we are, even more desperate and lived in Africa or Latin America, and did not have white skin, would we remember the same Psalms as we do now, and say the same prayers?

If we were hungry, would we thank the Lord for our daily bread, bread which might not come today? Do we sometimes try to make our God, and our Jesus into the Gods for white men alone?

Maybe some folks do become Christians and worship God because it confirms their status and racism, but Jesus can turn even these ideas into true love for all humanity.

Maybe we should remember that what we think God will do, is really supposed to be what we together, as the Kingdom of God on earth should do if we love God and love Jesus Christ.

Pray fro peace and your reconciliation with God

brother Bill

Peace Mennonite Church keeps a prayer list for those in need. If you need prayer, or want to e-mail our pastor, e-mail billd @ peacemennonitechurch.net (Take out the extra spaces to use this e-mail—the spaces confuse spam generators).

Pray with us!

We are praying as a church, and attempting to follow the centuries’ old tradition of praying with other Christians three times a day. We are following the prayer liturgy at www.commonprayer.net

Copyright 2011. All rights reserved. Peace Mennonite Church of Columbia, MO Permission is granted for one-time non-commercial use with proper attribution.

Scriptures follow the meditation and thoughts. Scriptures for the day selected by http://www.commontexts.org/

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Psalm 52

Jeremiah 21:11-14

Revelation 21:22—22:5

Psalm 52

1Why do you boast, O mighty one, of mischief done against the godly? All day long

2you are plotting destruction. Your tongue is like a sharp razor, you worker of treachery.

3You love evil more than good, and lying more than speaking the truth. Selah

4You love all words that devour, O deceitful tongue.

5But God will break you down forever; he will snatch and tear you from your tent; he will uproot you from the land of the living. Selah

6The righteous will see, and fear, and will laugh at the evildoer, saying,

7“See the one who would not take refuge in God, but trusted in abundant riches, and sought refuge in wealth!”

8But I am like a green olive tree in the house of God. I trust in the steadfast love of God forever and ever.

9I will thank you forever, because of what you have done. In the presence of the faithful I will proclaim your name, for it is good.

Jeremiah 21:11-14

11To the house of the king of Judah say: Hear the word of the Lord, 12O house of David! Thus says the Lord: Execute justice in the morning, and deliver from the hand of the oppressor anyone who has been robbed, or else my wrath will go forth like fire, and burn, with no one to quench it, because of your evil doings. 13See, I am against you, O inhabitant of the valley, O rock of the plain, says the Lord; you who say, “Who can come down against us, or who can enter our places of refuge?” 14I will punish you according to the fruit of your doings, says the Lord; I will kindle a fire in its forest, and it shall devour all that is around it.

Revelation 21:22—22:5

22I saw no temple in the city, for its temple is the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb. 23And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God is its light, and its lamp is the Lamb. 24The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it. 25Its gates will never be shut by day—and there will be no night there. 26People will bring into it the glory and the honor of the nations. 27But nothing unclean will enter it, nor anyone who practices abomination or falsehood, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s book of life.

22Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb 2through the middle of the street of the city. On either side of the river is the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, producing its fruit each month; and the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. 3Nothing accursed will be found there any more. But the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and his servants will worship him; 4they will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. 5And there will be no more night; they need no light of lamp or sun, for the Lord God will be their light, and they will reign forever and ever.

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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Aside

The Summary Of It 061512

 

This blog comes to you from the people at Peace Mennonite Church of Columbia, MO

www.peacemennonitechurch.net

 

The Summary Of It 061512

Romans 8 (below) really summarizes so much of what I’ve (unfortunately) thought this morning: what if we don’t have enough money as we age (we won’t), what if we can’t afford food (we can’t), what if we can’t afford medical care ( we can’t)?

Romans 8 responds in a manner that seems to answer all our concerns, and I particularly seem to start the day with unattainable goals, unresolved worries and a long list of what should have been, but wasn’t.

This is human life, isn’t it? We all look at life in terms of ‘I need…’, or ‘I want….” but in God’s terms, which are certainly more infinite, we hear ‘If God is for us, who is against us?’ Romans 8:31b and that’s the cosmic, eternal forever answer. It doesn’t promise us food, shelter, a job, or a long life. But for eternity, all is well.

Pray for peace

brother Bill

Peace Mennonite Church keeps a prayer list for those in need. If you need prayer, or want to e-mail our pastor, e-mail billd @ peacemennonitechurch.net (Take out the extra spaces to use this e-mail—the spaces confuse spam generators).

Pray with us!

We are praying as a church, and attempting to follow the centuries’ old tradition of praying with other Christians three times a day. We are following the prayer liturgy at www.commonprayer.net

Copyright 2011. All rights reserved. Peace Mennonite Church of Columbia, MO Permission is granted for one-time non-commercial use with proper attribution.

Scriptures follow the meditation and thoughts. Scriptures for the day selected by http://www.commontexts.org/

 

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Psalm 81:1-10

Leviticus 23:1-8

Romans 8:31-39

 

Psalm 81

1Sing aloud to God our strength; shout for joy to the God of Jacob.

2Raise a song, sound the tambourine, the sweet lyre with the harp.

3Blow the trumpet at the new moon, at the full moon, on our festal day.

4For it is a statute for Israel, an ordinance of the God of Jacob.

5He made it a decree in Joseph, when he went out over the land of Egypt. I hear a voice I had not known:

6“I relieved your shoulder of the burden; your hands were freed from the basket.

7In distress you called, and I rescued you; I answered you in the secret place of thunder; I tested you at the waters of Meribah. Selah

8Hear, O my people, while I admonish you; O Israel, if you would but listen to me!

9There shall be no strange god among you; you shall not bow down to a foreign god.

10I am the Lord your God, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt. Open your mouth wide and I will fill it.

Leviticus 23:1-8

23The Lord spoke to Moses, saying: 2Speak to the people of Israel and say to them: These are the appointed festivals of the Lord that you shall proclaim as holy convocations, my appointed festivals. 3Six days shall work be done; but the seventh day is a sabbath of complete rest, a holy convocation; you shall do no work: it is a sabbath to the Lord throughout your settlements.

4These are the appointed festivals of the Lord, the holy convocations, which you shall celebrate at the time appointed for them. 5In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month, at twilight, there shall be a passover offering to the Lord, 6and on the fifteenth day of the same month is the festival of unleavened bread to the Lord; seven days you shall eat unleavened bread. 7On the first day you shall have a holy convocation; you shall not work at your occupations. 8For seven days you shall present the Lord’s offerings by fire; on the seventh day there shall be a holy convocation: you shall not work at your occupations.

Romans 8:31-39

31What then are we to say about these things? If God is for us, who is against us? 32He who did not withhold his own Son, but gave him up for all of us, will he not with him also give us everything else? 33Who will bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. 34Who is to condemn? It is Christ Jesus, who died, yes, who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who indeed intercedes for us. 35Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will hardship, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all day long; we are accounted as sheep to be slaughtered.” 37No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

Aside

The Community of Christ 052912

English: A submersion baptism of the Community...

English: A submersion baptism of the Community of Christ, in Pichilemu, Chile. (Las Terrazas Beach) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

This blog comes to you from the people at Peace Mennonite Church of Columbia, MO

www.peacemennonitechurch.net

 

The Community of Christ 052912

A friend once remarked when we were discussing coming to church, that she didn’t want to attend a church where she would be missed if she wasn’t there. In a small church like ours, that’s impossible, maybe sitting in the back row of a 2,000 seat auditorium is more like it!

 

The community of Christ, or as Paul says ‘the body of Christ’ knows when you’re there and when you are not, and your spiritual presence is an important part of the body, that can’t be overlooked.

 

It’s hard to be an anonymous Christian. It’s harder to be a ‘lone Christian’ than to be the Lone Ranger, but even he had Tonto, and had to wear a mask.

 

To be a Christian, 1 Corinthians is discussing, means to be a part of community. I personally think that a huge church would prevent or obstruct community, but then again, there is almost no way to prevent community, and the community of Christ arises where there are believers and disciples, no matter where or when.

 

Christ is with us.

 

Pray for peace

brother Bill

 

Peace Mennonite Church keeps a prayer list for those in need. If you need prayer, or want to e-mail our pastor, e-mail billd @ peacemennonitechurch.net (Take out the extra spaces to use this e-mail—the spaces confuse spam generators).

Pray with us!

We are praying as a church, and attempting to follow the centuries’ old tradition of praying with other Christians three times a day. We are following the prayer liturgy at www.commonprayer.net

Copyright 2011. All rights reserved. Peace Mennonite Church of Columbia, MO Permission is granted for one-time non-commercial use with proper attribution.

Scriptures follow the meditation and thoughts. Scriptures for the day selected by http://www.commontexts.org/

 

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Psalm 104:24-34, 35b

Genesis 11:1-9

1 Corinthians 12:12-27

 

Psalm 104:24-34, 35b

24O Lord, how manifold are your works! In wisdom you have made them all; the earth is full of your creatures.

25Yonder is the sea, great and wide, creeping things innumerable are there, living things both small and great.

26There go the ships, and Leviathan that you formed to sport in it.

27These all look to you to give them their food in due season;

28when you give to them, they gather it up; when you open your hand, they are filled with good things.

29When you hide your face, they are dismayed; when you take away their breath, they die and return to their dust.

30When you send forth your spirit, they are created; and you renew the face of the ground.

31May the glory of the Lord endure forever; may the Lord rejoice in his works—

32who looks on the earth and it trembles, who touches the mountains and they smoke.

33I will sing to the Lord as long as I live; I will sing praise to my God while I have being.

34May my meditation be pleasing to him, for I rejoice in the Lord.

35Let sinners be consumed from the earth, and let the wicked be no more. Bless the Lord, O my soul. Praise the Lord!

Genesis 11:1-9

11Now the whole earth had one language and the same words. 2And as they migrated from the east, they came upon a plain in the land of Shinar and settled there. 3And they said to one another, “Come, let us make bricks, and burn them thoroughly.” And they had brick for stone, and bitumen for mortar. 4Then they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city, and a tower with its top in the heavens, and let us make a name for ourselves; otherwise we shall be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth.”

5The Lord came down to see the city and the tower, which mortals had built. 6And the Lord said, “Look, they are one people, and they have all one language; and this is only the beginning of what they will do; nothing that they propose to do will now be impossible for them. 7Come, let us go down, and confuse their language there, so that they will not understand one another’s speech.” 8So the Lord scattered them abroad from there over the face of all the earth, and they left off building the city. 9Therefore it was called Babel, because there the Lord confused the language of all the earth; and from there the Lord scattered them abroad over the face of all the earth.

1 Corinthians 12:12-27

12For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. 13For in the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and we were all made to drink of one Spirit. 14Indeed, the body does not consist of one member but of many. 15If the foot would say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 16And if the ear would say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 17If the whole body were an eye, where would the hearing be? If the whole body were hearing, where would the sense of smell be? 18But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose. 19If all were a single member, where would the body be? 20As it is, there are many members, yet one body. 21The eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you,” nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” 22On the contrary, the members of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23and those members of the body that we think less honorable we clothe with greater honor, and our less respectable members are treated with greater respect; 24whereas our more respectable members do not need this. But God has so arranged the body, giving the greater honor to the inferior member, 25that there may be no dissension within the body, but the members may have the same care for one another. 26If one member suffers, all suffer together with it; if one member is honored, all rejoice together with it.

27Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it.

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

Aside

Run, Timothy, Run 051412

 

Zurich Marathon

Zurich Marathon (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This blog comes to you from the people at Peace Mennonite Church of Columbia, MO

 

www.peacemennonitechurch.net

 

Run, Timothy, Run 051412

 

Paul’s advice to his young friend Timothy is good for us all, as a start to the week. But, as many of us do, I compared the NRSV translation with other translation and with The Message paraphrase or restatement. (The few people I know with a command of New Testament Greek, whom I envy, also use The Message as a helpful translation) Today’s passage from 1 Timothy 6:11-12 says:

 

 11-12But you, Timothy, man of God: Run for your life from all this. Pursue a righteous life—a life of wonder, faith, love, steadiness, courtesy. Run hard and fast in the faith. Seize the eternal life, the life you were called to, the life you so fervently embraced in the presence of so many witnesses.

 

After a weekend, filled with memories and tragedy for those who have lost their mother, and visiting and usually food for all who spent the day with their mother, 1 Timothy is a guide for the week.

 

Sometimes Mondays remind one of what it is like to waken in a small rowboat in the middle of a large lake or the ocean. Which way is the shore? So, we look around as we wake up and find our bearings for the week.

 

Let 1 Timothy be a compass and a map for your life this week.

 

Pray for peace,

 

brother Bill

 

Peace Mennonite Church keeps a prayer list for those in need. If you need prayer, or want to e-mail our pastor, e-mail billd @ peacemennonitechurch.net (Take out the extra spaces to use this e-mail—the spaces confuse spam generators).

 

Pray with us!

 

We are praying as a church, and attempting to follow the centuries’ old tradition of praying with other Christians three times a day. We are following the prayer liturgy at www.commonprayer.net

 

Copyright 2011. All rights reserved. Peace Mennonite Church of Columbia, MO Permission is granted for one-time non-commercial use with proper attribution.

 

Scriptures follow the meditation and thoughts. Scriptures for the day selected by http://www.commontexts.org/

 

Subscribe to our blog! Delivery daily by e-mail. Click the button on the right.

 

Psalm 93

 

Deuteronomy 7:1-11

 

1 Timothy 6:11-12

 

Psalm 93

 

1The Lord is king, he is robed in majesty; the Lord is robed, he is girded with strength. He has established the world; it shall never be moved;

 

2your throne is established from of old; you are from everlasting.

 

3The floods have lifted up, O Lord, the floods have lifted up their voice; the floods lift up their roaring.

 

4More majestic than the thunders of mighty waters, more majestic than the waves of the sea, majestic on high is the Lord!

 

5Your decrees are very sure; holiness befits your house, O Lord, forevermore.

 

Deuteronomy 7:1-11

 

7When the Lord your God brings you into the land that you are about to enter and occupy, and he clears away many nations before you—the Hittites, the Girgashites, the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites, seven nations mightier and more numerous than you— 2and when the Lord your God gives them over to you and you defeat them, then you must utterly destroy them. Make no covenant with them and show them no mercy. 3Do not intermarry with them, giving your daughters to their sons or taking their daughters for your sons, 4for that would turn away your children from following me, to serve other gods. Then the anger of the Lord would be kindled against you, and he would destroy you quickly. 5But this is how you must deal with them: break down their altars, smash their pillars, hew down their sacred poles, and burn their idols with fire. 6For you are a people holy to the Lord your God; the Lord your God has chosen you out of all the peoples on earth to be his people, his treasured possession. 7It was not because you were more numerous than any other people that the Lord set his heart on you and chose you—for you were the fewest of all peoples. 8It was because the Lord loved you and kept the oath that he swore to your ancestors, that the Lord has brought you out with a mighty hand, and redeemed you from the house of slavery, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt. 9Know therefore that the Lord your God is God, the faithful God who maintains covenant loyalty with those who love him and keep his commandments, to a thousand generations, 10and who repays in their own person those who reject him. He does not delay but repays in their own person those who reject him. 11Therefore, observe diligently the commandment—the statutes, and the ordinances—that I am commanding you today.

 

1 Timothy 6:11-12

 

11But as for you, man of God, shun all this; pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance, gentleness. 12Fight the good fight of the faith; take hold of the eternal life, to which you were called and for which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.

 

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

 

 

 

Aside

Servant Leadership 051212

The Lord is my Good Shepherd

The Lord is my Good Shepherd (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 This blog comes to you from the people at Peace Mennonite Church of Columbia, MO

www.peacemennonitechurch.net

Servant Leadership 051212

Several years ago, maybe now a decade or more ago the concept of ‘servant leadership’ was popular, with books and seminars available for all. Reading Mark 10 this morning reminds us where this concept originated: 43But it is not so among you; but whoever wishes to become great among you must be your servant. This is a clear statement from Mark 10, and from Jesus. Why has it not been accomplished? We raise our children to pursue their goals, to earn their degrees and recognition, and to find a job and career that is above all, highly compensated.

Of course it is not just career advice and college counseling that we can draw from these words of Jesus, but a different and unique way of orienting our lives. Further, these words do not (in my opinion) call us to be part of a human anthill or beehive in which the hill or hive is the only important thing going on.

Instead, (in my humble opinion) Jesus is the first on earth to call humans to become individualized, and not just individuals. We do this by following Jesus’ example, and as individuals of choice, we choose to serve other individuals.

Pray for peace

brother Bill

Peace Mennonite Church keeps a prayer list for those in need. If you need prayer, or want to e-mail our pastor, e-mail billd @ peacemennonitechurch.net (Take out the extra spaces to use this e-mail—the spaces confuse spam generators).

Pray with us!

We are praying as a church, and attempting to follow the centuries’ old tradition of praying with other Christians three times a day. We are following the prayer liturgy at www.commonprayer.net

Copyright 2011. All rights reserved. Peace Mennonite Church of Columbia, MO Permission is granted for one-time non-commercial use with proper attribution.

Scriptures follow the meditation and thoughts. Scriptures for the day selected by http://www.commontexts.org/

Subscribe to our blog! Delivery daily by e-mail. Click the button on the right.

Psalm 98

Deuteronomy 32:44-47

Mark 10:42-45

Psalm 98

1O sing to the Lord a new song, for he has done marvelous things. His right hand and his holy arm have gotten him victory.

2The Lord has made known his victory; he has revealed his vindication in the sight of the nations.

3He has remembered his steadfast love and faithfulness to the house of Israel. All the ends of the earth have seen the victory of our God.

4Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth; break forth into joyous song and sing praises.

5Sing praises to the Lord with the lyre, with the lyre and the sound of melody.

6With trumpets and the sound of the horn make a joyful noise before the King, the Lord.

7Let the sea roar, and all that fills it; the world and those who live in it.

8Let the floods clap their hands; let the hills sing together for joy

9at the presence of the Lord, for he is coming to judge the earth. He will judge the world with righteousness, and the peoples with equity.

Deuteronomy 32:44-47

44Moses came and recited all the words of this song in the hearing of the people, he and Joshua son of Nun. 45When Moses had finished reciting all these words to all Israel, 46he said to them: “Take to heart all the words that I am giving in witness against you today; give them as a command to your children, so that they may diligently observe all the words of this law. 47This is no trifling matter for you, but rather your very life; through it you may live long in the land that you are crossing over the Jordan to possess.”

Mark 10:42-45

42So Jesus called them and said to them, “You know that among the Gentiles those whom they recognize as their rulers lord it over them, and their great ones are tyrants over them. 43But it is not so among you; but whoever wishes to become great among you must be your servant, 44and whoever wishes to be first among you must be slave of all. 45For the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many.”

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Related articles are presented without endorsement

Aside

What if God Means Us? 051112

Concertina razor wire at a prison

Concertina razor wire at a prison (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

This blog comes to you from the people at Peace Mennonite Church of Columbia, MO

www.peacemennonitechurch.net

What if God Means Us? 051112

Isaiah 42:6(b) today says:…. I have given you as a covenant to the people, a light to the nations, 7to open the eyes that are blind, to bring out the prisoners from the dungeon, from the prison those who sit in darkness.

Many have understood this to mean that God was to send Jesus, the Messiah to the people, etc.

But what if God meant he was sending you and I, as disciples of Christ, to do all these things? The Message restatement says:

I have set you among my people to bind them to me,
and provided you as a lighthouse to the nations,
To make a start at bringing people into the open, into light:
opening blind eyes,
releasing prisoners from dungeons,

So, what does it mean if God is referring to us also, and not just Jesus? It is one of those moments that remind me when one says ‘Oh no, I didn’t know that was in my job description!’

This can remind one that a horrible contradiction continues to exist on this planet. Christian disciples are the followers of the most peace loving, peaceable, peace-making ‘person’ to walk the earth. Yet Christians continue to be the source of most military force. I don’t know whether there is some justification for this or not, but we still are the source of the weapons for the world, and since we Christians also have so much wealth, we are in the place of thinking we need to protect the wealth, and protect it all over the globe. Based on numbers, Christians are wealthy people who carry guns around the world.

I personally don’t know what the truth of this is, or what to do about it, but it should trouble all Christian disciples in some way deeply.

Pray for peace

brother Bill

Peace Mennonite Church keeps a prayer list for those in need. If you need prayer, or want to e-mail our pastor, e-mail billd @ peacemennonitechurch.net (Take out the extra spaces to use this e-mail—the spaces confuse spam generators).

Pray with us!

We are praying as a church, and attempting to follow the centuries’ old tradition of praying with other Christians three times a day. We are following the prayer liturgy at www.commonprayer.net

Copyright 2011. All rights reserved. Peace Mennonite Church of Columbia, MO Permission is granted for one-time non-commercial use with proper attribution.

Scriptures follow the meditation and thoughts. Scriptures for the day selected by http://www.commontexts.org/

Subscribe to our blog! Delivery daily by e-mail. Click the button on the right.

Psalm 98

Isaiah 42:5-9

Acts 10:34-43

Psalm 98

1O sing to the Lord a new song, for he has done marvelous things. His right hand and his holy arm have gotten him victory.

2The Lord has made known his victory; he has revealed his vindication in the sight of the nations.

3He has remembered his steadfast love and faithfulness to the house of Israel. All the ends of the earth have seen the victory of our God.

4Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth; break forth into joyous song and sing praises.

5Sing praises to the Lord with the lyre, with the lyre and the sound of melody.

6With trumpets and the sound of the horn make a joyful noise before the King, the Lord.

7Let the sea roar, and all that fills it; the world and those who live in it.

8Let the floods clap their hands; let the hills sing together for joy

9at the presence of the Lord, for he is coming to judge the earth. He will judge the world with righteousness, and the peoples with equity.

Isaiah 42:5-9

5Thus says God, the Lord, who created the heavens and stretched them out, who spread out the earth and what comes from it, who gives breath to the people upon it and spirit to those who walk in it: 6I am the Lord, I have called you in righteousness, I have taken you by the hand and kept you; I have given you as a covenant to the people, a light to the nations, 7to open the eyes that are blind, to bring out the prisoners from the dungeon, from the prison those who sit in darkness. 8I am the Lord, that is my name; my glory I give to no other, nor my praise to idols. 9See, the former things have come to pass, and new things I now declare; before they spring forth, I tell you of them.

Acts 10:34-43

34Then Peter began to speak to them: “I truly understand that God shows no partiality, 35but in every nation anyone who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him. 36You know the message he sent to the people of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ—he is Lord of all. 37That message spread throughout Judea, beginning in Galilee after the baptism that John announced: 38how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power; how he went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him. 39We are witnesses to all that he did both in Judea and in Jerusalem. They put him to death by hanging him on a tree; 40but God raised him on the third day and allowed him to appear, 41not to all the people but to us who were chosen by God as witnesses, and who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead. 42He commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that he is the one ordained by God as judge of the living and the dead. 43All the prophets testify about him that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.”

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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Aside

Women at Ease 050812

 

Mary Magdalene, in a dramatic 19th-century pop...

Mary Magdalene, in a dramatic 19th-century popular image of penitence painted by Ary Scheffer. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This blog comes to you from the people at Peace Mennonite Church of Columbia, MO

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Women at Ease 050812

Decades ago there was an economist that stated that one sign of greed and excessive consumption was the acquisition of an idle wife, a ‘woman at ease’ as Isaiah states. It is first, a very degrading statement to make about a woman or a man—that they were acquired only to show that someone could afford to keep a ‘woman at ease’ (or a spouse at ease)

But Isaiah has it right and speaks loudly—in Isaiah 32: 14For the palace will be forsaken, the populous city deserted;’ but when this happens, and the spouses at ease rise up in protest, righteousness and peace will come.

How do we think this will happen? Rather than take this as a prophesy, it can be read as a story of how we are. When peoples, cultures and civilizations become so excessive as to keep human beings as family for the purpose of displaying them as evidence of success, then that culture is excessive, wasteful and not at peace with God.

Do we know any cultures to which this may apply? Is this how Satan works in the world?

Pray for peace

brother Bill

Peace Mennonite Church keeps a prayer list for those in need. If you need prayer, or want to e-mail our pastor, e-mail billd @ peacemennonitechurch.net (Take out the extra spaces to use this e-mail—the spaces confuse spam generators).

Pray with us!

We are praying as a church, and attempting to follow the centuries’ old tradition of praying with other Christians three times a day. We are following the prayer liturgy at www.commonprayer.net

Copyright 2011. All rights reserved. Peace Mennonite Church of Columbia, MO Permission is granted for one-time non-commercial use with proper attribution.

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Psalm 80

Isaiah 32:9-20

James 3:17-18

 

Psalm 80

1Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel, you who lead Joseph like a flock! You who are enthroned upon the cherubim, shine forth

2before Ephraim and Benjamin and Manasseh. Stir up your might, and come to save us!

3Restore us, O God; let your face shine, that we may be saved.

4O Lord God of hosts, how long will you be angry with your people’s prayers?

5You have fed them with the bread of tears, and given them tears to drink in full measure.

6You make us the scorn of our neighbors; our enemies laugh among themselves.

7Restore us, O God of hosts; let your face shine, that we may be saved.

8You brought a vine out of Egypt; you drove out the nations and planted it.

9You cleared the ground for it; it took deep root and filled the land.

10The mountains were covered with its shade, the mighty cedars with its branches;

11it sent out its branches to the sea, and its shoots to the River.

12Why then have you broken down its walls, so that all who pass along the way pluck its fruit?

13The boar from the forest ravages it, and all that move in the field feed on it.

14Turn again, O God of hosts; look down from heaven, and see; have regard for this vine,

15the stock that your right hand planted.

16They have burned it with fire, they have cut it down; may they perish at the rebuke of your countenance.

17But let your hand be upon the one at your right hand, the one whom you made strong for yourself.

18Then we will never turn back from you; give us life, and we will call on your name.

19Restore us, O Lord God of hosts; let your face shine, that we may be saved.

Isaiah 32:9-20

9Rise up, you women who are at ease, hear my voice; you complacent daughters, listen to my speech. 10In little more than a year you will shudder, you complacent ones; for the vintage will fail, the fruit harvest will not come. 11Tremble, you women who are at ease, shudder, you complacent ones; strip, and make yourselves bare, and put sackcloth on your loins. 12Beat your breasts for the pleasant fields, for the fruitful vine, 13for the soil of my people growing up in thorns and briers; yes, for all the joyous houses in the jubilant city. 14For the palace will be forsaken, the populous city deserted; the hill and the watchtower will become dens forever, the joy of wild asses, a pasture for flocks; 15until a spirit from on high is poured out on us, and the wilderness becomes a fruitful field, and the fruitful field is deemed a forest. 16Then justice will dwell in the wilderness, and righteousness abide in the fruitful field. 17The effect of righteousness will be peace, and the result of righteousness, quietness and trust forever. 18My people will abide in a peaceful habitation, in secure dwellings, and in quiet resting places. 19The forest will disappear completely, and the city will be utterly laid low. 20Happy will you be who sow beside every stream, who let the ox and the donkey range freely.

James 3:17-18

17But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without a trace of partiality or hypocrisy. 18And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace for those who make peace.

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

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