By Paul R. Raabe The Gospel lesson appointed for the ninth Sunday after Pentecost is the Mary and Martha account. It illustrates the priority of the word over food. The psalm for that day prays, “Teach me your way, O Yahweh” (Ps 27:11). That prayer expresses the desire of Mary. When tempted, Jesus himself said, ..
By Jeff Gibbs I say to my students with some regularity, “Careful exegesis often makes the text harder to preach.” What I mean, of course, is that the concerns of a particular text of Scripture might not, at first glance, be the sorts of things that concern a Christian/Lutheran congregation in twenty-first-century North America. When this is the ..
By Tony Cook Isaiah 44:6–8 is nestled within a larger discourse of the chapter that glorifies the God of creation over the idols made by man, while reminding the reader that the Creator God is also a redeeming God. Below are three approaches to preaching this text. Each one utilizes the text and the surrounding context to explore different ..
By Robert Weise Reconciliation: Ministry and Mystery We all love a good mystery; a mystery where we don’t find out until the very end who the “mystery person” is. This may be likened to, “Oh, he/she is the one!” And when we see and hear who this “mystery person” is, the whole story line is ..
By Timothy Dost Jeremiah 23:1–6 presents a challenge to the preacher of appearing to be too narrow in scope in terms of the law to be useful to the congregation. The lament of Jeremiah, while directed at clergy, can also be applied homiletically as a complaint about generally being unfaithful to one’s calling within the ..
By Travis J. Scholl Consider this act two in the grand dramatic entrance of the parables into the Gospel of Matthew and the Matthean lectionary, the second of three consecutive readings of Matthew 13’s “parables of the kingdom.” The lectionary divisions essentially follow what exegetes have found to be the triadic pattern of the chapter (for ..
By James Voelz The Feeding of the 5000 I. Introduction: This pericope occurs within the critical events of chapter 6 of Mark. The chapter begins with Jesus’ rejection in his hometown (vv. 1ff) and continues with the twelve being sent out as “apostles” to carry forth his mission of preaching and healing (vv. 7ff). This is ..
By William W. Schumacher, The previous text (Ro 8:12-17) presented us with “Life by the Spirit of Christ.” The present text, the second of three consecutive readings from this chapter, encourages us under the theme of “Hope in the Midst of Suffering.” Paul does not pretend that faith in Christ removes life’s difficulties. In fact, ..