Greetings, since we have been at this a month and a half, I thought I would change how I have been commenting. Up until now I have sort of been doing whatever I wanted each day. However now I would like a more systematic approach, because there are many ways to study the scriptures—and all can be helpful. So I would like to model some of the ways you can read the Bible each week. My idea is to have a different type of Bible study technique used each day, you than both know what to expect and what can think about these types of Bible study techniques even when I am not using it on that day.
Please go ahead and read the blogpost about it for full details but here is the brief schedule.
Monday: Salvation History
Tuesday: Historical Criticism
Wednesday: Reader Response
Thursday: Law and Gospel
Friday: Textual Criticism
Saturday: Sabbath—just read and pray
Dec5TueDecember 5, 2017
[Luk 24:13-53 RSV] 13 That very day two of them were going to a village named Emma'us, about seven miles from Jerusalem, 14 and talking with each other about all these things that had happened. 15 While they were talking and discussing together, Jesus himself drew near and went with them. 16 But their eyes were kept from recognizing him. 17 And he said to them, "What is this conversation which you are holding with each other as you walk?" And they stood still, looking sad. 18 Then one of them, named Cle'opas, answered him, "Are you the only visitor to Jerusalem who does not know the things that have happened there in these days?" 19 And he said to them, "What things?" And they said to him, "Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people, 20 and how our chief priests and rulers delivered him up to be condemned to death, and crucified him. 21 But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since this happened. 22 Moreover, some women of our company amazed us. They were at the tomb early in the morning 23 and did not find his body; and they came back saying that they had even seen a vision of angels, who said that he was alive. 24 Some of those who were with us went to the tomb, and found it just as the women had said; but him they did not see." 25 And he said to them, "O foolish men, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?" 27 And beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself. 28 So they drew near to the village to which they were going. He appeared to be going further, 29 but they constrained him, saying, "Stay with us, for it is toward evening and the day is now far spent." So he went in to stay with them. 30 When he was at table with them, he took the bread and blessed, and broke it, and gave it to them. 31 And their eyes were opened and they recognized him; and he vanished out of their sight. 32 They said to each other, "Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the scriptures?" 33 And they rose that same hour and returned to Jerusalem; and they found the eleven gathered together and those who were with them, 34 who said, "The Lord has risen indeed, and has appeared to Simon!" 35 Then they told what had happened on the road, and how he was known to them in the breaking of the bread. 36 As they were saying this, Jesus himself stood among them. 37 But they were startled and frightened, and supposed that they saw a spirit. 38 And he said to them, "Why are you troubled, and why do questionings rise in your hearts? 39 See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself; handle me, and see; for a spirit has not flesh and bones as you see that I have." 40 Other ancient authorities add verse 40, [And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet.] 41 And while they still disbelieved for joy, and wondered, he said to them, "Have you anything here to eat?" 42 They gave him a piece of broiled fish, 43 and he took it and ate before them. 44 Then he said to them, "These are my words which I spoke to you, while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the law of Moses and the prophets and the psalms must be fulfilled." 45 Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, 46 and said to them, "Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, 47 and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be preached in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. 48 You are witnesses of these things. 49 And behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you; but stay in the city, until you are clothed with power from on high." 50 Then he led them out as far as Bethany, and lifting up his hands he blessed them. 51 While he blessed them, he parted from them, and was carried up into heaven. 52 And they returned to Jerusalem with great joy, 53 and were continually in the temple blessing God.
[Gen 44:1-34 RSV] 1 Then he commanded the steward of his house, "Fill the men's sacks with food, as much as they can carry, and put each man's money in the mouth of his sack, 2 and put my cup, the silver cup, in the mouth of the sack of the youngest, with his money for the grain." And he did as Joseph told him. 3 As soon as the morning was light, the men were sent away with their asses. 4 When they had gone but a short distance from the city, Joseph said to his steward, "Up, follow after the men; and when you overtake them, say to them, 'Why have you returned evil for good? Why have you stolen my silver cup? 5 Is it not from this that my lord drinks, and by this that he divines? You have done wrong in so doing.'" 6 When he overtook them, he spoke to them these words. 7 They said to him, "Why does my lord speak such words as these? Far be it from your servants that they should do such a thing! 8 Behold, the money which we found in the mouth of our sacks, we brought back to you from the land of Canaan; how then should we steal silver or gold from your lord's house? 9 With whomever of your servants it be found, let him die, and we also will be my lord's slaves." 10 He said, "Let it be as you say: he with whom it is found shall be my slave, and the rest of you shall be blameless." 11 Then every man quickly lowered his sack to the ground, and every man opened his sack. 12 And he searched, beginning with the eldest and ending with the youngest; and the cup was found in Benjamin's sack. 13 Then they rent their clothes, and every man loaded his ass, and they returned to the city. 14 When Judah and his brothers came to Joseph's house, he was still there; and they fell before him to the ground. 15 Joseph said to them, "What deed is this that you have done? Do you not know that such a man as I can indeed divine?" 16 And Judah said, "What shall we say to my lord? What shall we speak? Or how can we clear ourselves? God has found out the guilt of your servants; behold, we are my lord's slaves, both we and he also in whose hand the cup has been found." 17 But he said, "Far be it from me that I should do so! Only the man in whose hand the cup was found shall be my slave; but as for you, go up in peace to your father." 18 Then Judah went up to him and said, "O my lord, let your servant, I pray you, speak a word in my lord's ears, and let not your anger burn against your servant; for you are like Pharaoh himself. 19 My lord asked his servants, saying, 'Have you a father, or a brother?' 20 And we said to my lord, 'We have a father, an old man, and a young brother, the child of his old age; and his brother is dead, and he alone is left of his mother's children; and his father loves him.' 21 Then you said to your servants, 'Bring him down to me, that I may set my eyes upon him.' 22 We said to my lord, 'The lad cannot leave his father, for if he should leave his father, his father would die.' 23 Then you said to your servants, 'Unless your youngest brother comes down with you, you shall see my face no more.' 24 When we went back to your servant my father we told him the words of my lord. 25 And when our father said, 'Go again, buy us a little food,' 26 we said, 'We cannot go down. If our youngest brother goes with us, then we will go down; for we cannot see the man's face unless our youngest brother is with us.' 27 Then your servant my father said to us, 'You know that my wife bore me two sons; 28 one left me, and I said, Surely he has been torn to pieces; and I have never seen him since. 29 If you take this one also from me, and harm befalls him, you will bring down my gray hairs in sorrow to Sheol.' 30 Now therefore, when I come to your servant my father, and the lad is not with us, then, as his life is bound up in the lad's life, 31 when he sees that the lad is not with us, he will die; and your servants will bring down the gray hairs of your servant our father with sorrow to Sheol. 32 For your servant became surety for the lad to my father, saying, 'If I do not bring him back to you, then I shall bear the blame in the sight of my father all my life.' 33 Now therefore, let your servant, I pray you, remain instead of the lad as a slave to my lord; and let the lad go back with his brothers. 34 For how can I go back to my father if the lad is not with me? I fear to see the evil that would come upon my father."
[Psa 35:1-28 RSV] 1 A Psalm of David. Contend, O LORD, with those who contend with me; fight against those who fight against me! 2 Take hold of shield and buckler, and rise for my help! 3 Draw the spear and javelin against my pursuers! Say to my soul, "I am your deliverance!" 4 Let them be put to shame and dishonor who seek after my life! Let them be turned back and confounded who devise evil against me! 5 Let them be like chaff before the wind, with the angel of the LORD driving them on! 6 Let their way be dark and slippery, with the angel of the LORD pursuing them! 7 For without cause they hid their net for me; without cause they dug a pit for my life. 8 Let ruin come upon them unawares! And let the net which they hid ensnare them; let them fall therein to ruin! 9 Then my soul shall rejoice in the LORD, exulting in his deliverance. 10 All my bones shall say, "O LORD, who is like thee, thou who deliverest the weak from him who is too strong for him, the weak and needy from him who despoils him?" 11 Malicious witnesses rise up; they ask me of things that I know not. 12 They requite me evil for good; my soul is forlorn. 13 But I, when they were sick--I wore sackcloth, I afflicted myself with fasting. I prayed with head bowed on my bosom, 14 as though I grieved for my friend or my brother; I went about as one who laments his mother, bowed down and in mourning. 15 But at my stumbling they gathered in glee, they gathered together against me; cripples whom I knew not slandered me without ceasing; 16 they impiously mocked more and more, gnashing at me with their teeth. 17 How long, O LORD, wilt thou look on? Rescue me from their ravages, my life from the lions! 18 Then I will thank thee in the great congregation; in the mighty throng I will praise thee. 19 Let not those rejoice over me who are wrongfully my foes, and let not those wink the eye who hate me without cause. 20 For they do not speak peace, but against those who are quiet in the land they conceive words of deceit. 21 They open wide their mouths against me; they say, "Aha, Aha! our eyes have seen it!" 22 Thou hast seen, O LORD; be not silent! O Lord, be not far from me! 23 Bestir thyself, and awake for my right, for my cause, my God and my Lord! 24 Vindicate me, O LORD, my God, according to thy righteousness; and let them not rejoice over me! 25 Let them not say to themselves, "Aha, we have our heart's desire!" Let them not say, "We have swallowed him up." 26 Let them be put to shame and confusion altogether who rejoice at my calamity! Let them be clothed with shame and dishonor who magnify themselves against me! 27 Let those who desire my vindication shout for joy and be glad, and say evermore, "Great is the LORD, who delights in the welfare of his servant!" 28 Then my tongue shall tell of thy righteousness and of thy praise all the day long.
From Pastor Tim: For the first time Joseph’s brothers confess their sin today. Up until now they have kept this secret from their father and from all the world. Think about how much that sin must have eaten away at them for years. Did they get used to it? Probably, however when something bad happened or when they woke in the middle of the night they probably remembered the face of Joseph being led off into slavery. At special events they would remember that one spot was empty. They also looked to their father who was still grieving, would always be grieving for the son he lost. Today it is finally too much for them and they confess. We sometimes do the same, we hold on to our sin as a grand secret that must be kept from the world, in so doing often we stop ourselves from seeking forgiveness. Or we convince ourselves that no redemption is possible. That is why the practice of confession is so important—we need to be able to tell another person what we have done, and then have them assure us that God’s grace is bigger than our sin. I hope you have a confessor, if not you can always come to me for confession. As Lutherans we don’t often practice it, but I have given individual confession to maybe a dozen in my years of ministry and have found it incredibly powerful.
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!