Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Letters to the Church: Colossae

This week our journey through the letters of Paul takes us to Colossians. This four chapter letter would lend itself well to you reading one chapter each remaining day this week, starting with Chapter 1. Then check out the Bible Project map above and video below (or at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pXTXlDxQsvc) and see what you think...are there things our church today can learn from the letter to this church long ago?

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Letters to the Church: Thessalonica, Revisited


From the one of the longest New Testament letters we move to one of the shortest: 2 Thessalonians. It can easily be read in one sitting; in fact, we will read most if not all of it together on Sunday, but you'd do well to read it in advance (start here). Unlike our letters thus far, there's a lot more debate over when this letter was written, under what circumstances, and whether it was written by Paul himself or a later follower of Paul (this will be true of the next few letters we address). But no matter who wrote them and when, letters like 2 Thessalonians have words of truth to speak to us in this place and time. What do you hear in this letter that connects with you, or with our church or culture?

Check out the accompanying video from the Bible Project below or by visiting https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kbPBDKOn1cc. I look forward to diving together into this book that doesn't usually get much attention on Sunday!

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Letter to the Church at Rome

Fun facts about Paul's letter to the Church at Rome:

1) It's the longest letter.
2) It's the only biblical letter Paul wrote to people he had not met.
3) Did I mention it's long?

I would encourage you, if you are brave of heart, to read all of Romans this week. But, as you'll see from the map below, it's a LOT to take in:

I have no idea how we're going to do all of Romans in one sermon. But, at this point in the week, I have a strong feeling I'll be focusing on the second panel of this graphic: chapters 5-8, which I really think is the heart not just of this letter, but of Paul's theology. SO if you only get to read one part, read chapters 5-8.

Then, check out not one but TWO Bible Project videos on Romans. Go to the blog to view them if you are receiving this by email. They are VERY helpful in navigating what has probably been one of the most important writings in all of Christian thought. So, challenging or not, we're off to Rome! See you Sunday!






Monday, July 10, 2017

Letters to the Church: Corinth, Revisited

This week we head back to the ancient city of Corinth to look for connections between their community's struggles and life in faith and ours today. A lot has changed since the first letter we read from Paul to them, so there are lots of new things for us to learn. I hope you'll take time to read 2 Corinthians this week. If you start today, here's a plan:

Monday: Ch. 1-2
Tuesday: Ch. 3-4
Wednesday: Ch. 5-7
Thursday: Ch. 8-9
Friday: Ch. 10-11
Saturday: Ch. 12-13

Check out the video below (go to blog site if you receive this by email) to get a broad overview of the book, then check out the whole picture by looking at the "map" by the Bible Project at the top of this page. What things do you already see that you think our community needs to hear today? Get those wheels turning and we'll talk about it on Sunday!

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Letter to the Church at Philippi (and Broadneck)


Our letter for this week is probably my favorite of Paul's letters (probably because it's the most upbeat AND has one of my favorite passages in scripture, pictured at right): Philippians. It's only four chapters long and full of joy, so give it a read this week by clicking on this link or looking it up in the translation of your choice.


Before or after you do so, watch the video below or at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oE9qqW1-BkU and check out the Bible Project map of the book that will be in our bulletin this week. What connections do you see between this community and ours?





Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Letters to the Church: Corinth (Round 1)


This week's letter is the second longest of those attributed to Paul in the New Testament: 1 Corinthians. Reading it through this week will take a little more time, but I still highly encourage you to take the time to do so! Here's how I would recommend breaking it up, if you want to read a chunk each day.

Tuesday: Chapters 1-4
Wednesday: Chapters 5-7
Thursday: Chapters 8-10
Friday: Chapters 11-14
Saturday: Chapters 15-16

This follows the breakdown of chapters in this week's video from The Bible Project (found below or at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yiHf8klCCc4) and in this week's "map" (found at the bottom of this page--click to enlarge--and also in this week's bulletin). I think this is a great, really clear way of thinking about the message of 1 Corinthians and how it teaches us to deal with hot-button and potentially divisive issues in our community today. And goodness, don't we need to learn about that?

See you Sunday!






Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Letters to the Church: Galatia

Our second letter as we continue our series of seeking to understand how letters addressed to early church communities speak to the things we face as a community today is Galatians. It's only 6 chapters, so I hope you'll read the whole thing over this week (2 chapters today and one each day that follows and you'll be there! It's even better if you read it through in one sitting, but I am a realistic woman:)). Here's a link to an online text: Read Galatians Here.

Before or after you read it, take 9 minutes to watch the great video below from The Bible Project. You can also follow this link to view it on YouTube.




Here's our Bible Project "map" of the book, which will also be in the bulletin Sunday.



As you read, look, and listen...what connections do you see between this church and ours? Come ready to share your insights during the sermon on Sunday!