Sunday, Nov 6, 2011: “Today’s Scripture Readings”

St. Mark’s Adult Education Meeting Summary
Today’s Scripture Lessons 
An In-Depth Discussion Led by the Rev. Mike Kreutzer
Sunday, November 6, 2011



FIRST READING: Revelation (7:9-17)


After this I looked, and there was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, robed in white, with palm branches in their hands. They cried out in a loud voice, saying, “Salvation belongs to our God who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb!” And all the angels stood around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures, and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, singing, “Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might be to our God forever and ever! Amen.” Then one of the elders addressed me, saying, “Who are these, robed in white, and where have they come from?” I said to him, “Sir, you are the one that knows.” Then he said to me, “These are they who have come out of the great ordeal; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. For this reason they are before the throne of God, and worship him day and night within his temple, and the one who is seated on the throne will shelter them. They will hunger no more, and thirst no more; the sun will not strike them, nor any scorching heat; for the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd, and he will guide them to springs of the water of life, and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.”

> An apocalyptic literature – vivid imagery

> God is in control of events

> The end is coming soon – 6th seal waiting to be opened

> Jesus is pictured as the lamb here.

> Countless multitude singing praises to God

> The crowds there are those who have escaped Roman persecution.

> Sometime these verses are used at funeral services.

> Ultimate victory of all people gathered around God.



PSALM 34:1-10, 22               


1   I will bless the Lord at all times; * 

     his praise shall ever be in my mouth.

2   I will glory in the Lord; * 

     let the humble hear and rejoice. 

3   Proclaim with me the greatness of the Lord;* 

     let us exalt his Name together. 

4   I sought the Lord, and he answered me *

     and delivered me out of all my terror. 

5   Look upon him and be radiant, *

     and let not your faces be ashamed. 

6    I called in my affliction and the Lord heard me * 

     and saved me from all my troubles.

7   The angel of the Lord encom- passes those who fear him, * 

     and he will deliver them.

8   Taste and see that the Lord is good; * 

     happy are they who trust in him! 

9   Fear the LORD, you that are his saints, * 

       For those who fear him lack nothing.

10  The young lions lack and suffer hunger, * 

      but those who seek the LORD lack nothing that is good.

22  The Lord ransoms the life of his servants, *

       and none will be punished who trust in him.

> Also sometimes used in funeral services.

> Personal testimony – I was in trouble. – The Lord saved me.

> Mentions God’s saints – used for All Saints’ Day.



SECOND READING: John (3:1-3)


See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and that is what we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed. What we do know is this: when he is revealed, we will be like him, for we will see him as he is. And all who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure.


> We are all God’s saints – not just those who have died.

> Realized eschatology (end of time) in John.

> We are already living in the end of time.



The Holy Gospel of Our Lord Jesus Christ according to Matthew (5:1-12)


When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain; and after he sat down, his disciples came to him. Then he began to speak, and taught them, saying: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”


> Sermon on the Mount – Luke has a parallel version but in plainer words.

> Beatitudes – 8 sayings.  (“Blessed is the man.”)

> Similar to a pattern found in Psalms.

> Royal setting image – king and his subjects