We are back from camp and the electrical issues have been mostly worked out. This week is VBS and we continue with reading from what I would call the less popular books, at this point you may be reading some stories that you have not heard before. If you are, sit with them for a while and ask yourself what do these stories tell you about God, and your relationship with God.
Here is what we are doing each day.
Monday: Salvation History
Tuesday: Historical Criticism
Wednesday: Reader Response
Thursday: Law and Gospel
Friday: Textual Criticism
Saturday: Sabbath—just read and pray
Aug8WedAugust 8, 2018
[Rev 8:1-13 RSV] 1 When the Lamb opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. 2 Then I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and seven trumpets were given to them. 3 And another angel came and stood at the altar with a golden censer; and he was given much incense to mingle with the prayers of all the saints upon the golden altar before the throne; 4 and the smoke of the incense rose with the prayers of the saints from the hand of the angel before God. 5 Then the angel took the censer and filled it with fire from the altar and threw it on the earth; and there were peals of thunder, voices, flashes of lightning, and an earthquake. 6 Now the seven angels who had the seven trumpets made ready to blow them. 7 The first angel blew his trumpet, and there followed hail and fire, mixed with blood, which fell on the earth; and a third of the earth was burnt up, and a third of the trees were burnt up, and all green grass was burnt up. 8 The second angel blew his trumpet, and something like a great mountain, burning with fire, was thrown into the sea; 9 and a third of the sea became blood, a third of the living creatures in the sea died, and a third of the ships were destroyed. 10 The third angel blew his trumpet, and a great star fell from heaven, blazing like a torch, and it fell on a third of the rivers and on the fountains of water. 11 The name of the star is Wormwood. A third of the waters became wormwood, and many men died of the water, because it was made bitter. 12 The fourth angel blew his trumpet, and a third of the sun was struck, and a third of the moon, and a third of the stars, so that a third of their light was darkened; a third of the day was kept from shining, and likewise a third of the night. 13 Then I looked, and I heard an eagle crying with a loud voice, as it flew in midheaven, "Woe, woe, woe to those who dwell on the earth, at the blasts of the other trumpets which the three angels are about to blow!"
[Neh 11:1-36 RSV] 1 Now the leaders of the people lived in Jerusalem; and the rest of the people cast lots to bring one out of ten to live in Jerusalem the holy city, while nine tenths remained in the other towns. 2 And the people blessed all the men who willingly offered to live in Jerusalem. 3 These are the chiefs of the province who lived in Jerusalem; but in the towns of Judah every one lived on his property in their towns: Israel, the priests, the Levites, the temple servants, and the descendants of Solomon's servants. 4 And in Jerusalem lived certain of the sons of Judah and of the sons of Benjamin. Of the sons of Judah: Athai'ah the son of Uzzi'ah, son of Zechari'ah, son of Amari'ah, son of Shephati'ah, son of Mahal'alel, of the sons of Perez; 5 and Ma-asei'ah the son of Baruch, son of Col-ho'zeh, son of Hazai'ah, son of Adai'ah, son of Joi'arib, son of Zechari'ah, son of the Shi'lonite. 6 All the sons of Perez who lived in Jerusalem were four hundred and sixty-eight valiant men. 7 And these are the sons of Benjamin: Sallu the son of Meshul'lam, son of Jo'ed, son of Pedai'ah, son of Kolai'ah, son of Ma-asei'ah, son of I'thi-el, son of Jeshai'ah. 8 And after him Gabba'i, Salla'i, nine hundred and twenty-eight. 9 Jo'el the son of Zichri was their overseer; and Judah the son of Hassen'u-ah was second over the city. 10 Of the priests: Jedai'ah the son of Joi'arib, Jachin, 11 Serai'ah the son of Hilki'ah, son of Meshul'lam, son of Zadok, son of Merai'oth, son of Ahi'tub, ruler of the house of God, 12 and their brethren who did the work of the house, eight hundred and twenty-two; and Adai'ah the son of Jero'ham, son of Pelali'ah, son of Amzi, son of Zechari'ah, son of Pashhur, son of Malchi'jah, 13 and his brethren, heads of fathers' houses, two hundred and forty-two; and Amash'sai, the son of Az'arel, son of Ah'zai, son of Meshil'lemoth, son of Immer, 14 and their brethren, mighty men of valor, a hundred and twenty-eight; their overseer was Zab'diel the son of Haggedo'lim. 15 And of the Levites: Shemai'ah the son of Hasshub, son of Azri'kam, son of Hashabi'ah, son of Bunni; 16 and Shab'bethai and Jo'zabad, of the chiefs of the Levites, who were over the outside work of the house of God; 17 and Mattani'ah the son of Mica, son of Zabdi, son of Asaph, who was the leader to begin the thanksgiving in prayer, and Bakbuki'ah, the second among his brethren; and Abda the son of Sham'mua, son of Galal, son of Jedu'thun. 18 All the Levites in the holy city were two hundred and eighty-four. 19 The gatekeepers, Akkub, Talmon and their brethren, who kept watch at the gates, were a hundred and seventy-two. 20 And the rest of Israel, and of the priests and the Levites, were in all the towns of Judah, every one in his inheritance. 21 But the temple servants lived on Ophel; and Ziha and Gishpa were over the temple servants. 22 The overseer of the Levites in Jerusalem was Uzzi the son of Bani, son of Hashabi'ah, son of Mattani'ah, son of Mica, of the sons of Asaph, the singers, over the work of the house of God. 23 For there was a command from the king concerning them, and a settled provision for the singers, as every day required. 24 And Pethahi'ah the son of Meshez'abel, of the sons of Zerah the son of Judah, was at the king's hand in all matters concerning the people. 25 And as for the villages, with their fields, some of the people of Judah lived in Kir'iath-ar'ba and its villages, and in Dibon and its villages, and in Jekab'zeel and its villages, 26 and in Jeshua and in Mola'dah and Beth-pelet, 27 in Ha'zar-shu'al, in Beer-sheba and its villages, 28 in Ziklag, in Meco'nah and its villages, 29 in En-rim'mon, in Zorah, in Jarmuth, 30 Zano'ah, Adullam, and their villages, Lachish and its fields, and Aze'kah and its villages. So they encamped from Beer-sheba to the valley of Hinnom. 31 The people of Benjamin also lived from Geba onward, at Michmash, Ai'ja, Bethel and its villages, 32 An'athoth, Nob, Anani'ah, 33 Hazor, Ramah, Git'taim, 34 Hadid, Zebo'im, Nebal'lat, 35 Lod, and Ono, the valley of craftsmen. 36 And certain divisions of the Levites in Judah were joined to Benjamin.
[Psa 103:1-22 RSV] 1 A Psalm of David. Bless the LORD, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless his holy name! 2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits, 3 who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, 4 who redeems your life from the Pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, 5 who satisfies you with good as long as you live so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's. 6 The LORD works vindication and justice for all who are oppressed. 7 He made known his ways to Moses, his acts to the people of Israel. 8 The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. 9 He will not always chide, nor will he keep his anger for ever. 10 He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor requite us according to our iniquities. 11 For as the heavens are high above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him; 12 as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us. 13 As a father pities his children, so the LORD pities those who fear him. 14 For he knows our frame; he remembers that we are dust. 15 As for man, his days are like grass; he flourishes like a flower of the field; 16 for the wind passes over it, and it is gone, and its place knows it no more. 17 But the steadfast love of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting upon those who fear him, and his righteousness to children's children, 18 to those who keep his covenant and remember to do his commandments. 19 The LORD has established his throne in the heavens, and his kingdom rules over all. 20 Bless the LORD, O you his angels, you mighty ones who do his word, hearkening to the voice of his word! 21 Bless the LORD, all his hosts, his ministers that do his will! 22 Bless the LORD, all his works, in all places of his dominion. Bless the LORD, O my soul!
From Pastor Tim:
Today I am struck at the casting of lots for who is to move into Jerusalem. At this point there are not enough people to keep Jerusalem full and it is decided that for Jerusalem to be the capital there must be more people. First, can you imagine the strength of faith it would take to just leave everything and move to Jerusalem because the lot came on you? Although I suppose it is not that different from those who leave families behind to go and do ministry. Here I mean ordained ministry, but also missionaries and those who feel called to go forth from their communities. This last week a person asked me, do you think it is OK for people to ask God for specific guidance in their lives? Yes, just as these people whose lot was cast moved everything because they believed it was God’s will we too should constantly be putting our plans before God and asking, is this what you want me to do? I hope you do this, and that you won’t be chosen to repopulate Jerusalem. However if you are called to Jerusalem, know that God’s got his eyes on you and his arms around you.
We are reading through the Bible in order to celebrate the anniversary of the reformation, we would invite you to join us where ever we are, or you could just start reading daily. Remember Luther wanted to get Scripture into the hand of everyone so they would grow to know God better. Join us!