Sunday, April 7, 2013: “Today’s Scripture Readings”

A Reading from the Acts of the Apostles (5:27-32)


[When the captain and the temple police had brought the apostles out of the temple,] they had them stand before the council. The high priest questioned them, saying, “We gave you strict orders not to teach in this name, yet here you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching and you are determined to bring this man’s blood on us.” But Peter and the apostles answered, “We must obey God rather than any human authority. The God of our ancestors raised up Jesus, whom you had killed by hanging him on a tree. God exalted him at his right hand as Leader and Savior that he might give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins. And we are witnesses to these things, and so is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey him.”


> “Octave” of Easter – eight days

> “Low” Sunday – low liturgically, (also sometimes attendance!)

> The Sunday where the white robes are put away.

> Acts vs. the Old Testament — continuation of Easter

> Jesus’ disciples will be persecuted just like Jesus was.

> The angel of God let the disciples out of jail.

> At the end of chapter 5 the apostles get to go free.



Psalm 150


1   Hallelujah!  Praise God in his holy temple; *

     praise him in the firmament of his power.

2   Praise him for his mighty acts; *

     praise him for his excellent greatness.

3    Praise him with the blast of the ram’s-horn; *

      praise him with lyre and harp.

4   Praise him with timbrel and dance; *

     praise him with strings and pipe.

5   Praise him with resounding cymbals; *

     praise him with loud-clanging cymbals.

6   Let everything that has breath *

     praise the Lord. Hallelujah!


> Last five Psalms – “Hallelujah” Psalms

> Ten imperatives

> Calling on someone – at end – everything that has breath



A Reading from the Book of Revelation (1:4-8)


John to the seven churches that are in Asia: Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us and freed us from our sins by his blood, and made us to be a kingdom, priests serving his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen. Look! He is coming with the clouds; every eye will see him, even those who pierced him; and on his account all the tribes of the earth will wail. So it is to be. Amen. “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.


> (Year A) = Peter;  (Year B) = John; (Year C) = Revelation

> Work of apocalyptic literature

> Vivid imagery

> Written during times of Christian persecution to encourage believers.

> Not sure who John is… common name.

> Written on the island of Tatmos (now part of Turkey)

> Enoch names the seven spirits.

> New title for Jesus and what he is to us.

> Image from Daniel (chapter 7) – chosen one coming with the clouds.

> Greek writer noted of Zeus:  is, was, will be.

> God is transforming this world – not disappearing to another world.



The Holy Gospel of Our  Lord Jesus Christ according to John (20:19-31)


When it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and the doors of the house where the disciples had met were locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.” After he said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” When he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.” But Thomas (who was called the Twin), one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he said to them, “Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands, and put my finger in the mark of the nails and my hand in his side, I will not believe.” A week later his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were shut, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.” Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it in my side. Do not doubt but believe.” Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!” Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe.” Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book. But these are written so that you may come to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that through believing you may have life in his name.


> Mary Magdalene’s encounter with Jesus at the tomb.

> For John – Easter is one large event:  death / resurrection / coming of the spirit / return to the Father

> In John, Jesus can pass through walls, but he is still physical.

> Breath / Spirit / Wind are all the same word in Hebrew and Greek.

> Jesus’ spirit is given to his disciples.

> Thomas – serves the purpose of people to believe even though they have never seen the risen Jesus.

> Nails in Jesus on the cross are only mentioned in John.

> The conclusion at the end of chapter 20 was the original end of John.

> Chapter 21 was written as an epilogue.