Prof. Tom Egger discusses the Old Testament pericope for Transfiguration Day, in the Year B lectionary
By William W. Carr “Blessed is the man (Μακαριος ανηρ; see, e.g., Ps 1:1, אַ֥שְֽׁרֵי־הָאִ֗ישׁ) who remains steadfast under trial” (Jas 1:12, ESV). Preparing this homiletical help in September makes it difficult not to think about Christians in Iraq and in several areas of Africa, who are pursued, persecuted, kidnapped, and murdered because they are Christians. The stomach churns, the ..
By David I. Lewis Literary Context The text is part of the section of 2 Corinthians where Paul is defending the integrity of his apostolic ministry and his past actions in dealing with the believers in Corinth (1:12–7:16). In the section immediately preceding today’s text, 3:7–11, Paul contrasts the ministry of Moses in mediating the Torah to Israel to ..
By Bruce Schuchard The goal of the human person who wishes to achieve everything that there is to achieve in life is _____. How would each one of us fill in the blank? According to the Hellenistic philosophers of the apostle Paul’s day, the pinnacle of human experience, of human existence and achievement, was not faith, hope, and love ..
By David Schmitt At the Museum of Contemporary Religious Art, there is an installation called Cup by Thomas Skomski. It’s basically a shelf extending out of the wall with a cup at the very end. The shelf is about the height of a countertop, making the cup perfectly within reach. Suspended there, this cup promises water for the weary. ..
By Tim Saleska Relevant Background Acts 18:1–17 describes Paul’s eighteenth-month stay in Corinth. When both Silas and Timothy came to help him, he was able to spend all of his time ministering to the Jews (v. 5). But eventually, opposition to his message forced him to stop preaching in the synagogue. He moved next door to the house ..
By Jeffrey A. Oschwald This pericope has all the dangers of a familiar text: we recall parts of it perfectly but may not remember how those parts all fit together. The themes of this passage are, no doubt, regular themes within our preaching. This day, however, can provide us with an opportunity to present this passage as something ..
By Joel P. Okamoto Notes on the Pericope The Old Testament people knew that God had promised life and salvation to all nations (e.g., see Genesis 12:3 and Isaiah 60:1–6, the appointed OT lesson), but they did not know how he would do that. God made this clear through his Son and in the witness of the apostles. Paul’s ..
By Glenn A. Nielsen The celebration of Christmas begins, in stores and media, months before December 25. Advent has led up to the church’s celebrations of Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Now, three days later, the season of Christmas continues. But what is left to say? What is left now that the children’s program has brought the trip to ..
By Ben Haupt On the final Sunday of Advent, just a few days before the glorious celebration of Christmas, these three verses at the end of the Epistle to the Romans are full of homiletical possibility. In just a few days, the people of God will join in countless hymns which all use the word “glory” (“Angels from the ..
By Jeff Gibbs It would be tempting to regard this text, a series of short imperative clauses, as a random series of “inspired one-liners” that exhort the Thessalonian believers (and us) to general Christian behaviors and attitudes. To be sure, there’s some truth in such a description, for there is no complex argument involved and the hardest structural ..