Sunday, Jan 21, 2018: “Today’s Scripture Readings”


Old Testament: 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.

  • Creative story — takes place during the rule of Jeroboam II.

  • The story was thought to be created around 300 BCE but took place around 600 BCE.
  • Emphasized God’s care for all people, even the hated Assyrians.
  • These verses pick up after the fish story… Go to Nineveh!




The Response: 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.


  • Extended trust in God — lists his attributes that were also listed in the Torah.
  • Then it extends to others who should also believe in God.




The Epistle: 1 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.


  • Expecting the coming of Jesus any day now.
  • Everything else is secondary.




The Gospel: 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.

  • The new beginning starts when John the Baptist is arrested.
  • In John’s version, Jesus’ and John’s ministries overlap.
  • The kingdom or dominion is about ready to break into the world.
  • Starts with Jesus’ ministry and then moves to when he calls his first disciples.
  • No motivation given as to why they followed.
  • Some think it may be based upon the call of Elisha.
  • Very quickly moving (“immediately”).