The first two of our epistle readings are from Paul's letter to the Galatians. Galatia was a central region in what is present day Turkey. Paul founded churches there during his missionary travels. The members of those churches were formerly Gentile pagans. After Paul left, other missionaries appeared on the scene, urging the Galatians to become circumcised, and to follow the Torah laws. These missionaries were Jewish Christians, so the argument is not about turning away from Christ, but what form turning toward Christ should take. As you read the texts, this background will be helpful.
What's ahead in the Bible readings for this week?
Remember that from now through Advent we have two series of readings, the complementary and the semi-continuous. Most denominations allow pastors to choose from either series. More information about the two series is here: Which Series?
Thursday June 29: Preparation for the Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Complementary: Jeremiah 25:1-7 God says to Judah, "You did not listen to me, and so you have provoked me to anger."
Semi-continuous: Micah 7:18-20 God will again have compassion on us.
Both: Galatians 5:2-6 In Christ, neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything; the only thing that counts is faith working through love.
Friday June 30: Preparation for the Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Complementary: Jeremiah 25:8-14 Judah will become a ruin and a waste and the people will serve in Babylon for 70 years. Then Babylon will be punished.
Semi-continuous: 2 Chronicles 20:5-12 The king prayed, "We are powerless against this great multitude, but our eyes are on you."
Both: Galatians 5:7-12 Paul writes, "You were running well; who prevented you from obeying the truth?"
Saturday July 1: Preparation for the Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Complementary: Jeremiah 28:1-4 God has broken the back of Babylon, and will bring back the exiles.
Semi-continuous: Genesis 26:23-25 God appeared to Isaac at Beer-sheba.
Both: Luke 17:1-4 If the same person sins against you seven times a day, and turns back to you and says "I repent," you must forgive.
The Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time (July 2)
Complementary: Jeremiah 28:5-9 When a prophet prophesies peace and it comes true, God has truly sent the prophet.
Semi-continuous: Genesis 22:1-14 Isaac is nearly sacrificed.
Both: Romans 6:12-23 Sin will have no dominion over you, since you not under the law, but under grace.
Both: Matthew 10:40-42 Those who give even a cup of water to one of these little ones in the name of a disciple will not lose their reward.
Monday July 3: Reflection on the Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Complementary: 1 Kings 21:1-16 King Ahab got Naboth's vineyard through Queen Jezebel's treachery.
Semi-continuous: Genesis 22:15-18 Because Abraham has not withheld Isaac from God, God promises offspring as numerous as the stars, through whom all the earth will gain blessing.
Both: 1 Thessalonians 4:9-12 Love one another, and aspire to live quietly.
Tuesday July 4: Reflection on the Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Complementary: 1 Kings 21:17-29 Jezebel's punishment, and Ahab's repentance
Semi-continuous: 1 Kings 18:36-39 The outcome of the contest between God and the prophets of Baal
Both: 1 John 4:1-6 The one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.
Wednesday July 5: Reflection on the Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Complementary: Jeremiah 18:1-11 God will change things just as a potter can, if nations repent.
Semi-continuous: Isaiah 51:1-3 Look to Abraham and Sarah, for I blessed them and made them many.
Both: Matthew 11:20-24 Jesus reproached the cities in which he did powerful deeds, because they did not repent.
Please note that the links above do not become active until 7 a.m. US Eastern Time on the designated day, when the readings get posted on the new web site. If you need the Sunday reading earlier, please let me know and I will assist you.
Thank you for your work toward God's reign.
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Bible verses from The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All right reserved.
Selections from Revised Common Lectionary Daily Readings, copyright 1995 by the Consultation on Common Texts.
Image credit: Asia Minor Political Map 500 B.C.E. via Wikimedia Commons. Follow the link for details on authorship.
What's Ahead A Ordinary Time 13