Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost, August 26, 2018, Proper 16, Year B

Please see How to Use Lection Connection 

Full lections can be read here.

Based on the Readings as Set

First Reading (1 Kings 8:[1,6,10-11], 22-30, 41-43)

Solomon dedicates the new temple and the divine Presence powerfully fills the building. The king knows that the Lord is not confined to this space but asks that all those who pray toward it, Jew and Gentile alike, will be answered and come to know the Lord.

Psalm (84)

The Psalmist exults in the blessings of living in the presence of God, his temple and his city. A single day spent there is worth thousands wasted in sin. He affirms that those who derive their strength from God alone are the happiest of all.

Second Reading (Ephesians 6:10-20)

Paul affirms that the Christian struggle is not with other humans but with evil spiritual forces. We need to use all the spiritual weapons God has for us, like soldiers fully armed for battle. The Ephesians are to pray that Paul will do his best to advance the Gospel.

Gospel (John 6:56-69)

Although Jesus discourages a literal meaning, talking of the need to eat his flesh and drink his blood offends many of his disciples and they desert him. The twelve remain with him, knowing, as Peter puts it, that only he has the words of eternal life.

CONNECTION SUGGESTIONS

  • Being in the presence of the Lord trumps all other considerations
  • The struggles of individual believers are part of a universal cosmic spiritual struggle
  • Only the Lord is able to provide eternal life as well as victory over sin and death: it is to him alone that we must look
  • We need to look beyond the surface to see God at work at the spiritual level

Based on the Alternative Readings

First Reading (Joshua 24:1-2a, 14-18)

Having led Israel in the conquest of Canaan, Joshua charges the nation always to follow the Lord and not the gods of their ancestors or the gods of the Land. Joshua commits himself and his family to the Lord as do the people, knowing what he has done for them.

Psalm (34:15-22)

The Psalmist asserts that the Lord helps those who follow his laws but is against those who do evil. Even though the righteous are beset by many troubles, they will be rescued and live. The wicked will be condemned to death for their evil deeds.

Second Reading (Ephesians 6:10-20)

Paul affirms that the Christian struggle is not with other humans but with evil spiritual forces. We need to use all the spiritual weapons God has for us, like soldiers fully armed for battle. The Ephesians are to pray that Paul will do his best to advance the Gospel.

Gospel (John 6:56-69)

Although Jesus discourages a literal meaning, talking of the need to eat his flesh and drink his blood offends many of his disciples and they desert him. The twelve remain with him, knowing, as Peter puts it, that only he has the words of eternal life.

CONNECTION SUGGESTIONS

  • There is only one way to live and that is by the word of the Lord
  • The struggles of individual believers are part of a universal cosmic spiritual struggle
  • Only the Lord is able to provide eternal life as well as victory over sin and death: it is to him alone that we must look
  • We need to look beyond the surface to see God at work at the spiritual level

 

 

 

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