Jeremiah Week 4

From Bad to Worse

This represents one of the low points of the book. It reminds us that when we think of vocation and God’s call to each of us, it is not always a call to participate in great and glorious ventures. It is not always a call to popularity and security. Full reading and audio »

Selections From the Prophets Week 4

The Day of the Lord: Joel 2:28–32

On a summer’s day in 2009, Manhattan urbanites in New York City were going about their usual hustle and bustle of starting their day. Rushing to the subway stations, hailing cabs, grabbing espresso drinks, and picking up copies of The New York Times to catch the latest headlines and scan the news items for the day. Full reading and audio »

Hebrews Week 4

A Quality-Built Home: Hebrews 3:1–4:13

By Rob Wall Paul T. Walls Professor of Scripture and Wesleyan Studies Read this week’s Scripture: Hebrews 3:1-4:13 34:42 Enlarge A neighborhood in Chicago attracts clusters of tourists, map in hand, to walk its streets to see the genius of the many homes designed and built by Frank Lloyd Wright. Most of these homes are […]

Mark Week 4

“Who Then Is This?”: Mark 4:35–6:6a

In 1939, a new character appeared in comic books. This figure had a docile, newspaper-reporter persona by day, and a cloaked, superhero guise by night. While the audience could look at Clark Kent and see that he simply needed to take off his glasses and change clothes to be Superman, even his closest associate and sometime-love-interest Lois Lane could not see the Superman in Clark Kent, or the Clark Kent in Superman. Full reading and audio »

1 & 2 Samuel Week 4

David Anointed, Saul’s Court, and Goliath: 1 Samuel 16–17

David’s name means “beloved,” and it is a fitting appellation for the person who is loved by God, by Israel, and by so many people throughout time. David’s appeal may be traced to his complexity, which is evident in two ways. Full reading and audio »

Selections From Israel's Story Week 4

The Golden Calf: Exodus 32

Our last Lectio ended with Exodus 24, and we have skipped over chapters 25–31, in which God gives Moses instructions about the tabernacle. It makes dramatic sense for us to move from Exodus 24 to Exodus 32: was when the covenant was sealed, and Chapter 32 is when the covenant is broken. Full reading and audio »

Romans Week 4

Election Revisited: Romans 4

I like watching movies, usually the older ones (but that is another story). A technique I really enjoy with movies and other kinds of media is the proverbial “twist” at the end. Full reading and audio »

Matthew Week 4

A Messiah of Words and Deeds: Matthew 8:1–11:1

In our reading for this week, Matthew has gathered together three groups of three miracle stories with transitional scenes between each group — all of which sets up the second of Jesus’ sermons in Matthew, the sermon on mission. Full reading and audio »

Genesis/Exodus Week 4

“Ending It All and Starting Over”: Genesis 4:1–6:22

We have come to the place where life outside the garden begins. At first, we are pleasantly surprised, for the previous accent on fertility and progeny (1:28; 2:24) is undiminished. The garden couple produces two sons. Full reading and audio »

Selections on New Creation Week 4

Watching Over One Another in Love: Acts 2:42–47

My experience in seminary was dramatically changed for the better by a simple invitation into deeper community. A friend invited me to join his accountability group. Full reading and audio »

Revelation Week 4

The Lamb Alone is Worthy to Open God’s Scroll (Revelation 5)

Revelation 5 reintroduces Jesus Christ as a lamb. By the estimation of most, a lamb is an odd way of speaking of God! I suspect we have far less difficulty placing God on heaven’s throne than we do worshiping a slaughtered lamb. Full reading and audio »

John Week 4

Celebrating Jesus: Life out of Death Over and Over and Over Again: John 5:1–7:52

Most of us love celebrations. Often our favorite celebrations are those that mark special days like birthdays or holidays. Full reading and audio »

Psalms Week 4

Divine Absence and Presence: Terrifying, Comforting, or Both? Psalms 22; 23; 24; 139

Almost intuitively, when one thinks of the book of Psalms one thinks of Scripture that comforts, encourages, and strengthens. Though the Old Testament God is sometimes thought of as remote, if not forbidding, somehow Psalms does not match this negative stereotype. Full reading and audio »

James Week 4

Who Is Wise Among You? James 3:1–4:10

Today’s reading is divided into three major sections, the first two building on what has come before, in order to come to a dramatic climax in the third. Thus far James has implied a good deal about the dangers of speech, but 3:1–12 will explain the problem in detail. Full reading and audio »

Week 4 Wisdom Literature

An Empirical Method: Proverbs 3:19–6:35; 10:1–15:33

We’ve seen that the sages of Israel believed that the universe, being the creation of a just and all-wise God, was morally ordered, and that God’s revealed laws mapped out the general features of this moral order. Full reading and audio »

Acts Week 4

Trouble in Paradise: Acts 5–7

The community in Jerusalem takes a tumble this week en route to a powerful, spirit-filled witness. It experiences a prodigious error, a course correction, and a courageous testimony. Full reading and audio »

Luke Week 4

Teaching Apostles and People: Luke 6:12–49

“I’ve got good news, and I’ve got bad news!” You’ve heard public speakers or friends or family members use that line. Sometimes these news-bringers add, “Which do you want to hear first?” Maybe it felt a little like that as Jesus began teaching apostles and people. Full reading and audio »

Isaiah Week 4

Immanuel Revisited: Isaiah 9:1–12:6

“For the time comes of the Dominion of Men, and the Elder Kindred shall fade or depart …. The burden must lie now upon you and your kindred.” Thus the stage is set for the drama in Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings; the fate of Middle-earth will rest in the race of men. Full reading and audio »

1 Corinthians Week 4

Called to Be … Humble Servants: I Corinthians 3:5–4:21

In this week’s Lectio passage, Paul completes his lengthy opening response to the problem of factions within the Corinthian church. Full reading and audio »

Joshua/Judges Week 4

“Your Going Out And Your Coming In”: Joshua 3:1–4:24

Psalm 121 is one of the shortest psalms in the Psalter — a mere eight verses — yet it succinctly relates how Israel is meant to view its covenantal God… Full reading and audio »