Devotion for the Feast of the Visitation of Mary to Elizabeth, Years A, B, C, and D (Humes)   1 comment

Above:  Embrace of Elizabeth and the Virgin Mary

Image in the Public Domain

Humility and Arrogance

MAY 31

In the Season of Easter in 2019

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The Collect:

Almighty God, in choosing the virgin Mary to be the mother of your Son,

you made known your gracious regard for the poor and the lowly and the despised.

Grant us grace to receive your Word in humility, and so made one with your Son,

Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you

and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.

Lutheran Book of Worship (1978), 33

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The Assigned Readings:

1 Samuel 2:1-10

Psalm 113

Romans 12:9-16b

Luke 1:39-57

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Depending on the date of Easter, and therefore of Pentecost, the Feast of the Visitation can fall in either the season of Easter or the Season after Pentecost.

The history of the Feast of the Visitation has been a varied one.  The feast, absent in Eastern Orthodoxy, began in 1263, when St. Bonaventure introduced it to the Order of Friars Minor (the Franciscans), which he led.  Originally the date was July 2, after the octave of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist (June 24).  Pope Urban VI approved the feast in 1389, the Council of Basel authorized it in 1441, propers debuted in the Sarum breviary of 1494, and Pope Pius V added the feast to the general calendar in 1561.  In 1969, during the pontificate of Paul VI, Holy Mother Church moved the Feast of the Visitation to May 31, in lieu of the Feast of the Queenship of the Blessed Virgin Mary, which Pope Pius XII had instituted in 1954.  The Episcopal Church added the Feast of the Visitation to its calendar in The Book of Common Prayer (1979).  The feast had long been July 2 in The Church of England and much of Lutheranism prior to 1969.  Subsequent liturgical revision led to the transfer of the feast to May 31 in those traditions.

The corresponding Eastern Orthodox feast on July 2 commemorates the placing of the Holy Robe of the Mother of God in the church at Blachernae, a suburb of Constantinople.

The theme of humility is prominent in the assigned readings and in the Lutheran collect I have quoted.  A definition of that word might therefore prove helpful.  The unabridged Webster’s New Twentieth Century Dictionary of the English Language (1951), a tome, defines humility as

Freedom from pride and arrogance; humbleness of mind; a modest estimate of one’s own worth; also, self-abasement, penitence for sin.

Humility refers to lowliness and, in the Latin root, of being close to the ground.  God raising up the lowly is a Lukan theme, as is God overthrowing the arrogant.  After all, the woes (Luke 6:24-26) follow the Beatitudes (6:20-25), where Jesus says,

Blessed are you who are poor,

not

Blessed are you who are poor in spirit (Matthew 5:3).

The first will be last and the last will be first, after all.

Wherever you are, O reader, you probably live in a society that celebrates the boastful, the arrogant.  The assigned readings for this day contradict that exultation of the proud, however.  They are consistent with the ethic of Jeremiah 9:22-23:

Yahweh says this,

“Let the sage not boast of wisdom,

nor the valiant of valour,

nor the wealthy of riches!

But let anyone who wants to boast, boast of this:

of understanding and knowing me.

For I am Yahweh, who acts with faithful love,

justice, and uprightness on earth;

yes, these are what please me,”

Yahweh declares.

The New Jerusalem Bible (1985)

St. Paul the Apostle channeled that ethic in 1 Corinthians 1:31 and 2 Corinthians 10:17, among other passages.

That which he understood well and internalized, not without some struggle, remains relevant and timeless.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 1, 2018 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT JUSTIN MARTYR, CHRISTIAN APOLOGIST AND MARTYR

THE FEAST OF SAINT PAMPHILUS OF CAESAREA, BIBLE SCHOLAR AND TRANSLATOR; AND HIS COMPANIONS, MARTYRS

THE FEAST OF SAMUEL STENNETT, ENGLISH SEVENTH-DAY BAPTIST MINISTER AND HYMN-WRITER; AND JOHN HOWARD, ENGLISH HUMANITARIAN

THE FEAST OF SAINT SIMEON OF SYRACUSE, ROMAN CATHOLIC MONK

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Adapted from this post:

https://lenteaster.wordpress.com/2018/06/01/devotion-for-the-feast-of-the-visitation-of-mary-to-elizabeth-years-a-b-c-and-d-humes/

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Devotion for Proper 3, Year A (Humes)   1 comment

Above:  Christ Pantocrator

Scan by Kenneth Randolph Taylor

Faithful Servants of God, Part I

NOT OBSERVED IN 2019

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Blessed Lord, who caused all holy Scriptures to be written for our learning:

Grant us so to hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them,

that we may embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of life,

which you have given us in our Savior Jesus Christ,  who lives and reigns

with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

The Book of Common Prayer (1979), page 236

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Ecclesiastes 4:1-12 or Ezekiel 22:23-31

Psalm 6

Galatians 3:1-11

Matthew 5:13-21

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Peeking behind the Law of Moses is a spiritually helpful practice.  Some commandments in the Law of Moses are timeless principles.  Others, however, are culturally specific examples.  Failure to recognize between an example bound by time and space and a timeless principle leads to legalism.

Reading Galatians 3:1-11 and Matthew 5:13-20 together is quite helpful.  We read that Jesus never objected to the Law of Moses, but to the misinterpretation, bad teaching, and flawed execution of it.  That also seems to have been an objection of St. Paul the Apostle.

The other readings pertain to oppression.  We read of violations of one timeless principle in the Law of Moses–do not exploit anyone.  We read of religious figures and royal officials who were predators of the weak and vulnerable.  Alas, this problem is as current in 2018 as it was in antiquity.  So is the sin of certain religious figures supporting those predatory potentates and officials.

The timeless principles of the Law of Moses continue to condemn those who sin thusly.  Indeed, apart from variations on themes, there is nothing new under the sun.

Do we condemn or condone such perfidy?

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

MARCH 21, 2018 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH, CARL PHILIPP EMANUEL BACH, AND JOHANN CHRISTIAN BACH, COMPOSERS

THE FEAST OF SAINT NICHOLAS OF FLÜE AND HIS GRANDSON, SAINT CONRAD SCHEUBER, SWISS HERMITS

THE FEAST OF SAINT SERAPION OF THMUIS, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

THE FEAST OF WILLIAM EDWARD HICKSON, ENGLISH MUSIC EDUCATOR AND SOCIAL REFORMER

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Adapted from this post:

https://adventchristmasepiphany.wordpress.com/2018/03/21/devotion-for-the-fifth-sunday-after-the-epiphany-year-a-humes/

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This is post #900 of ORDINARY TIME DEVOTIONS.

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Guide to Ordinary Time Devotions in December 2018   Leave a comment

Above:  Cathedral-Basilica of St. Louis, St. Louis, Missouri

Image in the Public Domain

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Saturday, December 1:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/10/devotion-for-thursday-friday-and-saturday-before-the-first-sunday-of-advent-year-c-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/05/devotion-for-december-1-in-ordinary-time-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/18/week-of-proper-29-thursday-friday-and-saturday-year-2/

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Guide to Ordinary Time Devotions in November 2018   Leave a comment

Above:  Cathedral of the Holy Cross, Boston, Massachusetts

Image in the Public Domain

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The Feast of All Saints:  November 1:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/05/16/feast-of-all-saints-november-1/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2016/12/20/devotion-for-all-saints-day-year-d/

Thursday, November 1:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/04/devotion-for-thursday-before-proper-26-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/05/09/devotion-for-november-1-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/07/week-of-proper-25-wednesday-year-2-and-week-of-proper-25-thursday-year-2/

The Feast of All Souls:  November 2:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/05/17/feast-of-all-souls-november-2/

Friday, November 2:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/04/devotion-for-friday-and-saturday-before-proper-26-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/05/09/devotion-for-november-2-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/08/week-of-proper-25-friday-year-2-and-week-of-proper-25-saturday-year-2/

Saturday, November 3:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/04/devotion-for-friday-and-saturday-before-proper-26-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/05/23/devotion-for-november-3-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/08/week-of-proper-25-friday-year-2-and-week-of-proper-25-saturday-year-2/

PROPER 26:  THE TWENTY-FOURTH SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST, YEAR B:  NOVEMBER 4, 2018:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2017/06/21/devotion-for-proper-26-ackerman/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2016/12/20/devotion-for-proper-26-year-d/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/08/proper-26-year-b/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/05/24/devotion-for-november-4-lcms-daily-lectionary/

Monday, November 5:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/05/devotion-for-monday-and-tuesday-after-proper-26-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/05/24/devotion-for-november-5-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/09/week-of-proper-26-monday-tuesday-and-wednesday-year-2/

Tuesday, November 6:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/05/devotion-for-monday-and-tuesday-after-proper-26-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/03/devotion-for-november-6-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/09/week-of-proper-26-monday-tuesday-and-wednesday-year-2/

Wednesday, November 7:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/05/devotion-for-wednesday-after-proper-26-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/03/devotion-for-november-7-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/09/week-of-proper-26-monday-tuesday-and-wednesday-year-2/

Thursday, November 8:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/06/devotion-for-thursday-before-proper-27-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/03/devotion-for-november-8-and-9-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/10/week-of-proper-26-thursday-year-2-and-week-of-proper-26-friday-year-2/

Friday, November 9:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/06/devotion-for-friday-and-saturday-before-proper-27-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/03/devotion-for-november-8-and-9-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/10/week-of-proper-26-thursday-year-2-and-week-of-proper-26-friday-year-2/

Saturday, November 10:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/06/devotion-for-friday-and-saturday-before-proper-27-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/03/devotion-for-november-10-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/10/week-of-proper-26-saturday-year-2/

PROPER 27:  THE TWENTY-FIFTH SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST, YEAR B:  NOVEMBER 11, 2018:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2017/06/21/devotion-for-proper-27-ackerman/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2016/12/21/devotion-for-proper-27-year-d/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/10/proper-27-year-b/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/03/devotion-for-november-11-lcms-daily-lectionary/

Monday, November 12:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/06/devotion-for-monday-tuesday-and-wednesday-after-proper-27-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/04/devotion-for-november-12-and-13-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/11/week-of-proper-27-monday-year-2/

Tuesday, November 13:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/06/devotion-for-monday-tuesday-and-wednesday-after-proper-27-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/04/devotion-for-november-12-and-13-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/11/week-of-proper-27-tuesday-year-2-and-week-of-proper-27-wednesdayyear-2/

Wednesday, November 14:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/06/devotion-for-monday-tuesday-and-wednesday-after-proper-27-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/04/devotion-for-november-14-15-and-16-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/11/week-of-proper-27-tuesday-year-2-and-week-of-proper-27-wednesdayyear-2/

Thursday, November 15:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/10/devotion-for-thursday-friday-and-saturday-before-proper-28-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/04/devotion-for-november-14-15-and-16-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/11/week-of-proper-27-thursday-year-2/

Friday, November 16:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/10/devotion-for-thursday-friday-and-saturday-before-proper-28-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/04/devotion-for-november-14-15-and-16-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/11/week-of-proper-27-friday-year-2-and-week-of-proper-27-saturday-year-2/

Saturday, November 17:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/10/devotion-for-thursday-friday-and-saturday-before-proper-28-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/04/devotion-for-november-17-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/11/week-of-proper-27-friday-year-2-and-week-of-proper-27-saturday-year-2/

PROPER 28:  THE TWENTY-SIXTH SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST, YEAR B:  NOVEMBER 18, 2018:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2017/06/21/devotion-for-proper-28-ackerman/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2016/12/21/devotion-for-proper-28-year-d/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/11/proper-28-year-b/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/04/devotion-for-november-18-and-19-lcms-daily-lectionary/

Monday, November 19:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/10/devotion-for-monday-and-tuesday-after-proper-28-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/04/devotion-for-november-18-and-19-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/12/week-of-proper-28-monday-year-2/

Tuesday, November 20:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/10/devotion-for-monday-and-tuesday-after-proper-28-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/04/devotion-for-november-20-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/14/week-of-proper-28-tuesday-year-2/

Wednesday, November 21:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/10/devotion-for-wednesday-after-proper-28-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/05/devotion-for-november-21-and-22-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/15/week-of-proper-28-wednesday-year-2/

Thursday, November 22:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/10/devotion-for-thursday-and-friday-before-proper-29-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/05/devotion-for-november-21-and-22-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/15/week-of-proper-28-thursday-year-2/

Thanksgiving Day (U.S.A.):  November 22:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/06/01/thanksgiving-day-u-s-a/

Friday, November 23:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/10/devotion-for-thursday-and-friday-before-proper-29-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/05/devotion-for-november-23-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/17/week-of-proper-28-friday-year-2-and-week-of-proper-28-saturday-year-2/

Saturday, November 24:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/10/devotion-for-saturday-before-proper-29-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/05/devotion-for-november-24-25-and-26-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/17/week-of-proper-28-friday-year-2-and-week-of-proper-28-saturday-year-2/

PROPER 29:  CHRIST THE THE KING SUNDAY:  THE LAST SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST, YEAR B:  NOVEMBER 25, 2018:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2017/06/21/devotion-for-proper-29-ackerman/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2016/12/21/devotion-for-proper-29-year-d/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/17/proper-29-year-b/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/05/devotion-for-november-24-25-and-26-lcms-daily-lectionary/

Monday, November 26:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/10/devotion-for-monday-tuesday-and-wednesday-after-proper-29-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/05/devotion-for-november-24-25-and-26-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/18/week-of-proper-29-monday-tuesday-and-wednesday-year-2/

Tuesday, November 27:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/10/devotion-for-monday-tuesday-and-wednesday-after-proper-29-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/05/devotion-for-november-27-in-ordinary-time-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/18/week-of-proper-29-monday-tuesday-and-wednesday-year-2/

Wednesday, November 28:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/10/devotion-for-monday-tuesday-and-wednesday-after-proper-29-year-b-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/05/devotion-for-november-28-in-ordinary-time-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/18/week-of-proper-29-monday-tuesday-and-wednesday-year-2/

Thursday, November 29:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/10/devotion-for-thursday-friday-and-saturday-before-the-first-sunday-of-advent-year-c-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/05/devotion-for-november-29-in-ordinary-time-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/18/week-of-proper-29-thursday-friday-and-saturday-year-2/

Friday, November 30:

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2015/07/10/devotion-for-thursday-friday-and-saturday-before-the-first-sunday-of-advent-year-c-elca-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/06/05/devotion-for-november-30-in-ordinary-time-lcms-daily-lectionary/

https://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/11/18/week-of-proper-29-thursday-friday-and-saturday-year-2/

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Devotion for Proper 29 (Ackerman)   2 comments

Above:   Christ Pantocrator

Scan by Kenneth Randolph Taylor

God is the Ruler Yet

NOVEMBER 25, 2018

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Blessed Lord, who caused all holy Scriptures to be written for our learning:

Grant us so to hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them,

that we may embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of life,

which you have given us in our Savior Jesus Christ,  who lives and reigns

with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

The Book of Common Prayer (1979), page 236

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Daniel 1:1-17

Psalm 9:1-8

Revelation 1:9-18

Luke 17:20-21

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This is my father’s world!

O let me ne’er forget

that though the wrong

seems oft so strong,

God is the ruler yet.

–Maltbie Davenport Babcock (1858-1901)

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In the reading from the Book of Revelation the imagery used to describe Jesus is similar to that usually reserved for the Roman Emperor.  Thus the Apocalypse of John fits the bill of subversive literature from the beginning.  Revelation 1:9-18 is therefore an appropriate lesson to read on Christ the King Sunday.

British Congregationalist minister Charles Harold (C. H.) Dodd proposed Realized Eschatology. The Kingdom of God, he wrote, has always been present.  It has, however, been more evident at some times than on others.  Dodd must have been thinking about the assigned Gospel reading as he formulated that idea.  Psalm 9 might also have been on his mind.

If Dodd was correct, what about exploitative powers, such as the Chaldean/Neo-Babylonian Empire (in Daniel) and the Roman Empire (in Revelation), among other oppressive regimes?  The question of, if God exists, why evil does also, has vexed many people over the ages.  But why would the existence of God nullify human free will and prevent abuses of it?

As the Mennonites tell us, we are living in the age of God’s patience.  This indicates a future age of divine impatience, with good news for many and catastrophic news for many others.  Judgment is in the purview of God, not mere mortals.  May we mere mortals understand that reality and embrace it.  May we also trust in God, who, despite appearances, is the ruler yet.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 21, 2017 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT ALOYSIUS GONZAGA, JESUIT

THE FEAST OF CARL BERNHARD GARVE, GERMAN MORAVIAN MINISTER, LITURGIST, AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF SAINTS JOHN JONES AND JOHN RIGBY, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYRS

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https://blogatheologica.wordpress.com/2017/06/21/god-is-the-ruler-yet-2/

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Devotion for Proper 28 (Ackerman)   2 comments

Above:   Icon of St. Paul the Apostle

Image in the Public Domain

Revere God and Observe His Commandments

NOVEMBER 18, 2018

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Blessed Lord, who caused all holy Scriptures to be written for our learning:

Grant us so to hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them,

that we may embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of life,

which you have given us in our Savior Jesus Christ,  who lives and reigns

with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

The Book of Common Prayer (1979), page 236

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Ecclesiastes 12

Psalm 144:1-8

Acts 27:39-28:10

John 12:44-50

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The sum of the matter, when all is said and done:  Revere God and observe His commandments!  For this applies to all mankind:  that God will call every creature to account for everything unknown, be it good or bad.

–Ecclesiastes 12:13-14a, TANAKH:  The Holy Scriptures (1985)

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God is everlasting; we are not.  God’s purpose will become reality, regardless of whether we cooperate with them.  We do have a responsibility to be servants, not enemies, of God, or even to be disinterested parties.  We are inconsequential relative to God, but what we do and do not do matters.

Divine judgment is a theme in the reading from Ecclesiastes.  The other half of the equation, of course, is mercy–in the Christian context, via Jesus.  One context in which to read scripture is other scripture.  We read of the coming of the Holy Spirit, in its role as the Advocate–literally, defense attorney–in John 14:15.  God is on our side.  Are we on God’s side?

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 21, 2017 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT ALOYSIUS GONZAGA, JESUIT

THE FEAST OF CARL BERNHARD GARVE, GERMAN MORAVIAN MINISTER, LITURGIST, AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF SAINTS JOHN JONES AND JOHN RIGBY, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYRS

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https://blogatheologica.wordpress.com/2017/06/21/revere-god-and-observe-his-commandments/

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Devotion for Proper 27 (Ackerman)   2 comments

Above:   Paul the Apostle, by Rembrandt van Rijn

Image in the Public Domain

Seeking Glory

NOVEMBER 11, 2018

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Blessed Lord, who caused all holy Scriptures to be written for our learning:

Grant us so to hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them,

that we may embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of life,

which you have given us in our Savior Jesus Christ,  who lives and reigns

with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

The Book of Common Prayer (1979), page 236

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Ecclesiastes 11:1-6

Psalm 119:169-176

Acts 27:1-2, 7-38

John 12:37-43

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Nevertheless many, even of the authorities, believed in him.  But because of the Pharisees they did not confess it, for fear that they would be put out of the synagogue; for they loved human glory more than the glory that comes from God.

–John 12:42-43, The New Revised Standard Version (1989)

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Which glory do we seek?

  1. The Psalmist made his choice, for he endured persecution because of it.  He acknowledged both his faithfulness and his sinfulness.
  2. Jesus made his choice, which led to his crucifixion.
  3. St. Paul the Apostle made his choice, which led to many hardships, including shipwrecks and his execution.

Koheleth’s advice regarding good works is timeless.  Do not permit uncertainty to detract oneself from doing the right thing, we read.  Following that counsel is one way to seek the glory of God as well as the benefit of others.  Heeding that advice is a fine choice to make.

Which glory do we seek?

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 21, 2017 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT ALOYSIUS GONZAGA, JESUIT

THE FEAST OF CARL BERNHARD GARVE, GERMAN MORAVIAN MINISTER, LITURGIST, AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF SAINTS JOHN JONES AND JOHN RIGBY, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYRS

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https://blogatheologica.wordpress.com/2017/06/21/seeking-glory/

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