Reflections on the lectionary readings by pastors, preachers, and biblical scholars
Photo by Mary Harrsch
Each Monday we publish Sunday's Coming, an email-only post on the upcoming readings, written by our current Living by the Word columnist.
Exodus 12:1–4, (5–10), 11–14; John 13:1–17, 31b–35
The Passover reading from Exodus and the text from John contain images that are visceral and intensely physical. Slaughtering animals, washing feet—I can smell both rooms.
Preachers often struggle with Palm Sunday, and Jesus' entry into Jerusalem gets short shrift. But Palm Sunday is about more than a parade.
Our culture's foundational sin is to make gods of ourselves, to find any excuse to go our own way rather than follow the Lord of life. We are weak. And yet in this Gospel story, so is Jesus.
After the anointing at Bethany, Judas asks why the fragrance wasn't sold and the money given to charity. A more apt question might be why Mary didn't use it on her brother Lazarus, dead just a few days before.
Luke 15:1–3, 11b–32
It has become almost a cliché for preachers to focus on the older brother of the Prodigal Son. Too often, not even our churches let us be the fallen brother who desperately wants to come home.
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