Sunday, February 3, 2013: “Today’s Scripture Readings”


A Reading from the Book of Jeremiah (1:4-10)


Now the word of the Lord came to me saying, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.” Then I said, “Ah, Lord God! Truly I do not know how to speak, for I am only a boy.” But the Lord said to me, “Do not say, ‘I am only a boy’; for you shall go to all to whom I send you, and you shall speak whatever I command you, Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you to deliver you, says the Lord.” Then the Lord put out his hand and touched my mouth; and the Lord said to me, “Now I have put my words in your mouth. See, today I appoint you over nations and over kingdoms, to pluck up and to pull down, to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant.”


> Early 600’s, late 500’s BCE.

> Assyrian empire wiped out by the Babylonians.

> Jeremiah could see the end coming.

> The people thought he was a traitor.

> The Babylonians supported him.

> After the destruction, there was words of hope.

> Jeremiah was called by God to be a prophet even before his birth.

> He did not want to be a prophet.

> Jeremiah gets a dual role: prophesy about destruction and about building the seeds of hope.



Psalm 71:1-6


1  In you, O Lord, have I taken refuge; *

     let me never be ashamed.

2   In your righteousness, deliver me and set me free; *

     incline your ear to me and save me.

3 Be my strong rock, a castle to keep me safe; *

    you are my crag and my stronghold.

4  Deliver me, my God, from the hand of the wicked, *

    from the clutches of the evildoer and the oppressor.

5  For you are my hope, O Lord God, *

    my confidence since I was young.

6 I have been sustained by you ever since I was born;

    from my mother’s womb you have been my strength; *

    my praise shall be always of you.


> Parallel to Psalm 22 and 31.

> They are called by God.

> God has been his hope since he was young.

> Mother’s womb is a reflection of the Jeremiah reading. 



A Reading from the First Letter of Paul to the Corinthians (13:1-13)


If I speak in the tongues of mortals and of angels, but do not have love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give away all my possessions, and if I hand over my body so that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing. Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends. But as for prophecies, they will come to an end; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will come to an end. For we know only in part, and we prophesy only in part; but when the complete comes, the partial will come to an end. When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; when I became an adult, I put an end to childish ways. For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then we will see face to face. Now I know only in part; then I will know fully, even as I have been fully known. And now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; and the greatest of these is love.


> Paul is dealing with the conflicts in Corinth.

> These verses are often used at weddings (“hearts and bubbles”).

> Corinth produced much bronze and used it for making gongs and cymbals.

> Paul is very blunt… you have nothing without love.

> “Love in action” verses.

> When we move to our next life all else ends but love never ends.

> It’s time for you to grow up!



The Holy Gospel of Our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke (4:21-30)


Jesus began to speak in the synagogue at Nazareth: “Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.” All spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his mouth. They said, “Is not this Joseph’s son?” He said to them, “Doubtless you will quote to me this proverb, ‘Doctor, cure yourself!’ And you will say, ‘Do here also in your hometown the things that we have heard you did at Capernaum.’” And he said, “Truly I tell you, no prophet is accepted in the prophet’s hometown. But the truth is, there were many widows in Israel in the time of Elijah, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, and there was a severe famine over all the land; yet Elijah was sent to none of them except to a widow at Zarephath in Sidon. There were also many lepers in Israel in the time of the prophet Elisha, and none of them was cleansed except Naaman the Syrian.” When they heard this, all in the synagogue were filled with rage. They got up, drove him out of the town, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their town was built, so that they might hurl him off the cliff. But he passed through the midst of them and went on his way.


> At last Sunday’s reading, Jesus was in the synagogue.

> It may be two different visits to Nazareth because the mood changes so much.

> Starts off very favorable then the crowd begins to ask questions.

> Capernaum is a “mixed” city of Jews and Gentiles.

> In the north, Elijah and Elisha are the great prophets.

> Elijah went to the non-Jews… (lady in Lebanon).

> Elisha cleansed the Syrian.

> The Jews in the synagogue did not want to hear these stories.

> Nazareth is not built on a cliff!