The Third Sunday after Pentecost:
Proper 5 / Lectionary 10
Death and life weave through the texts for this week. Through Elijah, God raises the son of the widow of Zarephath. Through Jesus, God raises the son of the widow of Nain. The psalmist rejoices that God has delivered him from death. Only Galatians stands outside this theme, telling of Paul’s experience on the road to Damascus and after – making clear that his message did not come from any human authority but from the risen Christ Jesus.
We struggle in ways the ancients did not with the idea that someone could be raised from death. Our task, however, is not to get sidetracked looking for explanations, but to hear the witness of these texts that God is a god who brings life. God is in the business of resurrection, of renewing and restoring life. This is God’s mission and purpose in the world – to free us from death’s power and restore all creation to the life God intended.
And though it’s not the central point Paul is making, what happened to him on that Damascus road was also a deliverance from the realm of death into the realm of life.
Prayer for June 9, 2013
you have not dealt with us according to our sin and brokenness
but out of your great compassion.
As you restored the life of the widow and her son,
be at work within and among us
to restore us to the fullness of life in you
The Texts for June 9, 2013
First Reading: 1 Kings 17:17-24 (God answers Elijah’s prayer for the life of the son of the widow of Zarephath to be restored.)
Psalmody: Psalm 30 (A prayer of thanksgiving from a person who was brought back from death’s door.)
Second Reading: Galatians 1:11-24 (Paul did not get his message from any human authority but from Christ)
Gospel: Luke 7:11-17 (The raising of the son of the Widow of Nain.)