In this week’s lectionary passage from the book of Isaiah, the prophet laments the strained relationship between God and the people of Israel. God is clearly venting here, using the imagery of a vineyard to vividly illustrate everything he has done for us. Isaiah lists all the labor that God has put into cultivating the field -- yet despite his best efforts, the people are only yielding wild grapes unfit for God’s wineskin. In exasperation, God threatens to quit working the field and let it grow over with weeds and thorns.
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Contents “Pay Attention” by C. David McKirachan “Appropriate?” by C. David McKirachan “Everything from A to Z” by Frank Ramirez
Pay Attention by C. David McKirachan Psalm 97
When I was a kid, the Wizard of Oz intruded on my sitcom world like a cobra into a nursery. Between flying monkeys and the wicked witch, I had nightmares way beyond each viewing. But the Wizard never got to me. The clouds and noises and lightings didn’t slam into me, didn’t overcome this child’s defenses.
The lessons for the last Sunday of Easter witness to how we might live by the awesome vision of God and his plans for a future so different from present realities that keep us in our own little “boxes.”
Mark Ellingsen Ron Love Bob Ove Bonnie Bates Bill Thomas Frank Ramirez
Acts 16:16-34 This is a story of sin, forgiveness, and healing. We are very good at the first of these. John Calvin well describes our talents when it comes to sin:
Foolishness and inconstancy are indeed common vices among all people, and almost continual, but the wonderful force of Satan doth therein betray itself, in that those who are in other matters modest and quiet are for a matter of no importance in a heat, and become companions of most vile persons when the truth must be resisted. (Calvin’s Commentaries, Vol.XIX/1, p.114)
The Reign of Christ has begun, even though it may not be immediately apparent to the world at large. In these three scriptures, some basic questions are addressed. In this passage in Acts Jesus addresses the concern that many Christians make today — when will these things take place — which translates in the minds of many as “When will Jesus return?” This is irrelevant. It will all happen. The timing belongs to God, the apostles are told. Get to work!