Sunday, January 25, 2015: “Today’s Scripture Readings”


A Reading from the Book of Jonah (3:1-5, 10)


The word of the Lord came to Jonah a second time, saying, “Get up, go to Nineveh, that great city, and proclaim to it the message that I tell you.” So Jonah set out and went to Nineveh, according to the word of the Lord. Now Nineveh was an exceedingly large city, a three days’ walk across. Jonah began to go into the city, going a day’s walk. And he cried out, “Forty days more, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!”  And the people of Nineveh believed God; they proclaimed a fast, and everyone, great and small, put on sackcloth. When God saw what they did, how they turned from their evil ways, God changed his mind about the calamity that he had said he would bring upon them; and he did not do it.


> This is the last chapter of the book that was created in Old Testament times.

> Jonah was on his way to Nineveh, the capital of Assyria, the most hated group of the times.

> When he would not follow God’s command, Jonah ended up in the belly of a whale.

> He was finally rescued and that’s when he agreed with God to go to Nineveh.

> These events never happened at Nineveh, as it had already been stripped of power when this was written.



Psalm (62:6-14)


6   For God alone my soul in silence waits; *

     truly, my hope is in him.

7   He alone is my rock and my salvation, *

     my stronghold, so that I shall not be shaken.

8   In God is my safety and my honor; *

     God is my strong rock and my refuge.

9  Put your trust in him always, O people, *

     pour out your hearts before him, for God is our refuge.

10 Those of high degree are but a fleeting breath, *

     even those of low estate cannot be trusted.

11 On the scales they are lighter than a breath, *

      all of them together.

12 Put no trust in extortion;

     in robbery take no empty pride; *

     though wealth increase, set not your heart upon it.

13 God has spoken once, twice have I heard it, *

     that power belongs to God.

14 Steadfast love is yours, O Lord, *

     for you repay everyone according to his deeds.


> The main story is about in whom or what do we put our trust.

> The first verses highlight putting all your trust in God.

> There is no one or no thing you can trust when compared to God.



 A Reading from the First Letter of Paul to the Corinthians (7:29-31)


I mean, brothers and sisters, the appointed time has grown short; from now on, let even those who have wives be as though they had none, and those who mourn as though they were not mourning, and those who rejoice as though they were not rejoicing, and those who buy as though they had no possessions, and those who deal with the world as though they had no dealings with it. For the present form of this world is passing away.


> The main emphasis is to focus on getting ready for Jesus to come in the near future.

> The world will pass away and nothing else matters.



The Holy Gospel of Our  Lord Jesus Christ according to Mark (1:14-20)


 Now after John was arrested, Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news.”  As Jesus passed along the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the sea—for they were fishermen. And Jesus said to them, “Follow me and I will make you fish for people.”  And immediately they left their nets and followed him. As he went a little farther, he saw James son of Zebedee and his brother John, who were in their boat mending the nets. Immediately he called them; and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired men, and followed him.


> In John’s version, this takes place in Jordan at the Jordan River.

> Also, in John’s version, the disciples are looking for Jesus.

> In Mark’s version Jesus calls his disciples by the Sea of Galilee.

> Jesus picks up the ministry where John the Baptist left off.

> Repent here means to turn to God with a new set of values.

> Matthew and Luke both pick up on Mark’s story.

> There is a great sense of urgency to follow Jesus.

> Mark uses the word “immediately” forty-one times in all of his writings!

> There may be a parallel here with Elijah calling Elisha.