July 14 | Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Jul 8, 2024 | General Presbyter & Stated Clerk, Resources, Worship Together, Worship Together Front Page

The Revised Common Lectionary passages for the Lord’s Day are:

First Reading: 2 Samuel 6:1-5, 12b-19
Psalm 24
Second Reading: Ephesians 1:3-14
Gospel Reading: Mark 6:14-29

The liturgical color for the day is: Green

The beheading of John – what a story to preach on.  A sermon on this text can focus on the symbolic frame that is at hand in this story.  Symbolically, there is a clash here between good and evil.  Symbolically, that clash is lived out in actions that either will build up or tear down.  This symbolic frame confronts us still today—there is no neutral, everything has an “energy” about it—everything has a result that will either build up or tear asunder the work God sets us to do as creation. 

In the story, we become Herod—we are continually called upon to make choices.  Some of those choices are very difficult and feel foisted upon us.  Do we understand, that all the choices we make will either build up or tear down the kingdom of God? 

This same dynamic is operative in the text from 2 Samuel—as David brings the ark into his city.  The choices that he makes already foreshadow the reality there will be moments when he faces difficult choices and dangerous ones too.  We know enough of the story to know that he does not always choose so well. 

With such as the reality of our lives, we are grateful for the mercy of God.  That mercy meets us in those places where the decisions we are making are not big bold decisions, but a constant flow of ones of which we have little consciousness that continue to do dis-service to the reign of God. 

May these difficult stories of good vs. not-good-at all (bad, evil), serve to bring to our consciousness that we need to frame our decisions by what builds up the reign of God in this world (and our lives too).

Rev. Dr. Daris Bultena
General Presbyter and Stated Clerk

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This