Five a.m. here, 61°F, clear. RevMike and family safely arrived in Moscow (currently one p.m. 38°F, light rainshowers) last evening and will be away today through Bay schools spring break next Sunday. I chair adult Sunday School sans co-chair. Next Sunday isn’t here yet, so who knows, but this morning I mean for us to discuss the OT lesson from Exodus, its responsive psalm, and the several other places in the Hebrew bible that relate to this incident that either stunned Moses with its harsh injustice or all were part of an etiology telling why the poor guy died just before everybody else crossed the Jordan into the Promised Land. Moses was never Adonai's favorite in the first place, it was Abram earlier and David later. We have a sense of fairness, and the story does Adonai the Merciful no favors. If read large, as I did again Saturday while exploring, the horror of the Israelites’ ethnic cleansing of Palestine becomes unspeakable precedent to our own holocaustic century across Europe. But everyone who has read Joshua and the Pentateuch is shockingly cognizant of this. Perhaps Lent is the time to read that nightmare, then move on into Easter.
In Sunday school, I’ll not touch this morning’s long gospel (John 4:5-42) "Jesus & the Samaritan Woman at the Well" incident that scandalized the disciples, the preacher can deal with that. Besides, from the Old Testament story of (1 Kings 17) "Elijah & the Widow of Zarephath," not to mention similar stories of Elisha encountering lonely widows, and younger women with old husbands, ὁ ἀναγινώσκων νοείτω, I have seen the command, “Bring me a glass of water, Baby” prove to be the mating call of the Prophetbird, an effective opening liner, and so accordingly have no intention of going there.
From the Romans reading, I do intend, time allowing in Sunday School, to explore a bit about Paul’s theology of justification by faith. I still worry our translation of Paul's genitive case in his Greek in Galatians and Romans being translated "in" instead of "of" and wonder if we've misread Paul and so picked that up in our soteriology that now our minds can’t consider the possibility that we read it wrong. For one, to let the genitive have it gives Christ the credit whereas forcing dative claims the credit for ourselves. IDK, Luther has it Glauben am Christum, and neither my black coffee nor my dark chocolate have kicked in this early.
pic: pinched online