Third Sunday of Easter, April 26, 2020

Please see How to Use Lection Connection

Full lections can be read here.

 

Based on the Readings as Set

First Reading (Acts 2:14a, 36-41)

In his Pentecost sermon to the Jews in Jerusalem, Peter affirms that Jesus’ resurrection means that God has made him whom they crucified both Lord and Messiah. Three thousand accept his invitation to repent of their sins and receive Christian baptism.

Psalm (116:1-4, 12-19)

The Psalmist declares his love for the Lord because when he called upon him, he was saved from the bonds of death. The death of the faithful is always precious to the Lord and for this reason he is worthy of both thanks and praise.

Second Reading (1 Peter 1:17-23)

Peter affirms that the death and resurrection of Jesus are “end-time” events, making its future blessedness at least partly a present reality for those who believe. It is being born again to a new way of life marked by mutual love and obedience to the truth.

Gospel (Luke 24:13-35)

Two disillusioned disciples leave Jerusalem after the discovery of the empty tomb and are joined by a stranger who shows them that the entire Old Testament predicted both Messiah’s death and resurrection. He vanishes after they recognize that it is Jesus.

 

CONNECTION SUGGESTIONS

  • The bodily resurrection of Jesus marks the critical moment in God’s plan
  • The resurrection of Jesus provides the entrance to new life for all who believe
  • The resurrection of Jesus marks the partial eruption of God’s future into our present existence
  • The resurrection of Jesus provides hope and meaning in the midst of this life

SCRIPTURE SENTENCE (BAS, Canada)

Lord Jesus, open to us the scriptures; make our hearts burn within us while you speak. See Luke 24.32

COLLECT OF THE DAY (BAS, Canada)

O God,
your Son made himself known to his disciples
in the breaking of bread.
Open the eyes of our faith,
that we may see him in his redeeming work,
who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. AMEN

Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost, October 6, 2019, Proper 22, Year C

Please see How to Use Lection Connection

Full lections can be read here.

 

Based on the Readings as Set

First Reading (Lamentations 1:1-6)

The writer of Lamentations is eloquent in his sad description of a ruined and desolate Judah and Jerusalem, once majestic among the nations, now like a forlorn widow. He notes simply that this has all come about because of unfaithfulness to the Lord.

Psalm Substitute (Lamentations 3:19-26)

The author of Lamentations continues by expressing his deep pain at Judah’s fate but remembers that the Lord is merciful and faithful and his salvation worth waiting for. From this though he derives his hope.

Second Reading (2 Timothy 1:1-14)

Paul, himself suffering for being faithful, trusts in Christ for his ultimate vindication. He urges Timothy to join him in suffering for the gospel, rekindling the gift of faith that was also in his mother and grandmother and holding to the message of grace already given.

Gospel (Luke 17:5-10)

In response to his disciples’ request for more faith, Jesus asserts that true faith is indeed powerful enough to move mountains. But in contrast he affirms that humble obedience through the simple performance of our duties is the best expression of faith.

Connection Suggestions

  • Disobedience or obedience may result in suffering
  • Doing the right thing because it is the right thing is always the right thing
  • Repent or perish!
  • Simple faithful obedience is better than spectacular demonstrations of faith

 

Based on the Alternative Readings A

First Reading (Lamentations 1:1-6)

The writer of Lamentations is eloquent in his sad description of a ruined and desolate Judah and Jerusalem, once majestic among the nations, now like a forlorn widow. He notes simply that this has all come about because of unfaithfulness to the Lord.

Psalm (137)

The Psalmist bitterly resents the conquerors’ demands for entertainment from the captives. Blaming only the enemies of Judah, especially the Babylonians, for the disaster, he calls on the Lord to execute terrible judgment upon them.

Second Reading (2 Timothy 1:1-14)

Paul, himself suffering for being faithful, trusts in Christ for his ultimate vindication. He urges Timothy to join him in suffering for the gospel, rekindling the gift of faith that was also in his mother and grandmother and holding to the message of grace already given.

Gospel (Luke 17:5-10)

In response to his disciples’ request for more faith, Jesus asserts that true faith is indeed powerful enough to move mountains. But in contrast he affirms that humble obedience through the simple performance of our duties is the best expression of faith.

Connection Suggestions

  • Disobedience or obedience may result in suffering
  • Doing the right thing because it is the right thing is always the right thing
  • Simple faithful obedience is better than spectacular demonstrations of faith
  • Faithfulness in suffering is sustained by a focus on grace received

 

Based on Alternative Readings B

First Reading (Habakkuk 1:1-4; 2:1-4)

Crying out for the Lord to end his silence concerning Judah’s destruction, the prophet Habakkuk decides simply to await the divine word. He is told of a coming “end” for which he is to wait, trusting in God’s word. It is by such faith that the righteous will live.

Psalm (37:1-9)

“Just wait” is the counsel of the Psalmist to those who agonize over the triumph of the wicked all around him. Look to the Lord and all will be well. Burning anger will lead to evil but faithfulness will result in inheriting the land and the destruction of the wicked.

Second Reading (2 Timothy 1:1-14)

Paul, himself suffering for being faithful, trusts in Christ for his ultimate vindication. He urges Timothy to join him in suffering for the gospel, rekindling the gift of faith that was also in his mother and grandmother and holding to the message of grace already given.

Gospel (Luke 17:5-10)

In response to his disciples’ request for more faith, Jesus asserts that true faith is indeed powerful enough to move mountains. But in contrast he affirms that humble obedience through the simple performance of our duties is the best expression of faith.

Connection Suggestions

  • Doing the right thing because it is the right thing is always the right thing
  • Simple faithful obedience is better than spectacular demonstrations of faith
  • Faithfulness in suffering is sustained by a focus on grace received
  • Trusting in God often means waiting for him

 

 

 

 

 

Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost, September 29, 2019, Proper 21, Year C

Please see How to Use Lection Connection

Full lections can be read here.

 

Based on the Readings as Set

First Reading (Jeremiah 32:1-3a, 6-15)

Because of his refusal to be a “good news” prophet Jeremiah is under house arrest as Jerusalem is fatally besieged by Babylon. The Lord tells him to buy a soon-to-be worthless piece of land and is assured that the land will be restored and the property will resume its normal value.

Psalm (91:1-6, 14-16)

The Psalmist assures his audience that those who love the Lord and call upon his name will escape any and everything that threatens their life and, taking refuge in him, come to experience the wonderful richness of his salvation.

Second Reading (1 Timothy 6:6-19)

St. Paul warns Timothy that pursuing money above all else leads to spiritual ruin, while the pursuit of righteousness will ultimately result in the “life that really is life” when Jesus Christ finally appears. Those Christians who are wealthy are urged to be rich in good works as well.

Gospel (Luke 16:19-31)

Jesus tells the parable of the rich man who lived in luxury and the poor man Lazarus who lived in misery. After death the rich man was in torment while Lazarus was with the saints in heaven. Even a warning from beyond the grave would be ineffective to overcome our love of money.

Connection Suggestions

  • Reversals of fortune at the hand of God
  • The true riches of God’s salvation in Christ
  • The love of money is the root of all evil, blinding us to the good
  • The promises of God’s blessing are often not fully realized in this present life
  • The Lord’s eye is especially upon the poor and needy

 

Based on the Alternative Readings

First Reading (Amos 6:1a, 4-7)

Amos decries the rich who are “at ease in Zion” even as the nation disintegrates around them. Instead of grieving over the coming disaster they are blinded by their enjoyment of material wealth.

Psalm (146)

The Psalmist declares that the way of the wicked will come to ruin. But he adds that the Lord will bless the faithful, especially those in desperate need, first with the hope of his reign and then with its realization. All this causes him to exhort his audience to praise such a God.

Second Reading (1 Timothy 6:6-19)

St. Paul warns Timothy that pursuing money above all else leads to spiritual ruin, while the pursuit of righteousness will ultimately result in the “life that really is life” when Jesus Christ finally appears. Those Christians who are wealthy are urged to be rich in good works as well.

Gospel (Luke 16:19-31)

Jesus tells the parable of the rich man who lived in luxury and the poor man Lazarus who lived in misery. After death the rich man was in torment while Lazarus was with the saints in heaven. Even a warning from beyond the grave would be ineffective to overcome our love of money.

Connection Suggestions

  • Reversals of fortune at the hand of God
  • The true riches of God’s salvation in Christ
  • The love of money is the root of all evil, blinding us to the good
  • The promises of God’s blessing are often not fully realized in this present life
  • The Lord’s eye is especially upon the poor and needy

 

 

Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost, September 15, 2019, Proper 19, Year C

Please see How to Use Lection Connection

Full lections can be read here.

 

Based on the Readings as Set

First Reading (Jeremiah 4:11-12, 22-28)

Jeremiah foresees God’s judgment upon Judah and Jerusalem as a scorching wind from the desert that sweeps all before it. The land will be desolate, without light, vegetation or inhabitants. Although this fate is inevitable, the Lord promises that it is not final.

Psalm (14)

The Psalmist laments Israel’s lack of someone to come to her rescue. The world seems full of fools who deny God’s very existence and who ignore his ways. All have gone astray. The Lord, however, is the refuge of the poor, and terror will come on the wicked.

Second Reading (1 Timothy 1:12-17)

Paul tells the young Timothy of his gratitude to Christ Jesus for his conversion and calling to serve. He was such a hard-case unbeliever that his coming to faith can only be seen as a miracle of grace, an example for all to see and come to faith themselves. He can only give glory to God.

Gospel (Luke 15:1-10)

Because he is criticized for socializing among sinners, Jesus tells two parables to illustrate that sinners are actually the primary focus of God’s attention and how he rejoices when even one repents. He tells of a shepherd who finds a lost sheep and a woman who finds a lost coin.

CONNECTION SUGGESTIONS

  • God’s judgment is meant to bring us back to himself
  • Amazing grace
  • We can only truly appreciate our redemption if we truly appreciate our lostness without Jesus
  • Our sinfulness does not make us repellant to God but attracts his loving and redemptive attention

 

Based on the Alternative Readings

First Reading (Exodus 32:7-14)

While Moses meets with Yahweh on Mt. Sinai the people demand that Aaron make gods for them. The Lord angrily decides to destroy this people who so quickly abandon him. He plans to make a great nation out of Moses instead, but the latter intercedes and the Lord relents.

Psalm (51:1-10)

The Psalmist admits both his inborn sinfulness and the sinful acts he has committed. He pleads that the Lord will have mercy upon him and grant him forgiveness and a clean heart. He begs for a new spirit to be given to him.

Second Reading (1 Timothy 1:12-17)

Paul tells the young Timothy of his gratitude to Christ Jesus for his conversion and calling to serve. He was such a hard-case unbeliever that his coming to faith can only be seen as a miracle of grace, an example for all to see and come to faith themselves. He can only give glory to God.

Gospel (Luke 15:1-10)

Because he is criticized for socializing among sinners, Jesus tells two parables to illustrate that sinners are actually the primary focus of God’s attention and how he rejoices when even one repents. He tells of a shepherd who finds a lost sheep and a woman who finds a lost coin.

CONNECTION SUGGESTIONS

  • Amazing grace
  • We can only truly appreciate our redemption if we truly appreciate our lostness without Jesus
  • Our sinfulness does not make us repellant to God but attracts his loving and redemptive attention
  • The perversity of sin