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Same Old Song Profile

Same Old Song

English, Religion, 1 season, 315 episodes, 6 days, 4 hours, 25 minutes
About
Join the Rev. Jacob Smith and the Rev. Aaron Zimmerman each week as they break down the lectionary texts for the coming Sunday with Gospel insight, a few (in)appropriate cultural references, and a heart for the sufferer in the pew—and the pulpit. All in a half an hour or so. Lectionary readings here: http://www.lectionarypage.net/. Audio production by TJ Hester
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Easter 4 (B): Baa Baa Sunday

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Fourth Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 4:5-12, 1 John 3:16-24, and John 10:11-18.
4/15/202423 minutes, 52 seconds
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Easter 3 (B): Total Eclipse of the Heart

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Third Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 3:12-19, 1 John 3:1-7, and Luke 24:36b-48.
4/8/202431 minutes, 10 seconds
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Easter 2 (B): Wrong Place, Wrong Time, Right Jesus

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Second Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 4:32-35, 1 John 1:1-2:2, and John 20:19-31.
4/1/202430 minutes, 27 seconds
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Easter (B): Really Good News (and 2 PSAs)

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for Easter Sunday, which are Acts 10:34-43 or Isaiah 25:6-9, 1 Corinthians 15:1-11 or Acts 10:34-43, and John 20:1-18 or Mark 16:1-8.
3/25/202422 minutes, 22 seconds
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Palm Sunday & Holy Week (B): Not Today, Satan!

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for Palm Sunday and Holy Week, which are Mark 11:1-11 or John 12:12-16; and Isaiah 50:4-9a, Philippians 2:5-11, and Mark 14:1-15:47 or Mark 15:1-39, [40-47].
3/18/202434 minutes, 23 seconds
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Lent 5 (B): Something Good

Jacob and Aaron examine the readings for the Fifth Sunday in Lent, which are Jeremiah 31:31-34, Hebrews 5:5-10, and John 12:20-33.
3/11/202423 minutes, 18 seconds
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Lent 4 (B): When the Lights Come On

Jacob and Aaron unpack the readings for the Fourth Sunday in Lent, which are Number 21:4-9, Ephesians 2:1-10, and John 3:14-21.
3/6/202431 minutes, 32 seconds
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Lent 3 (B): If You Want a Ladder, Go to Home Depot (Not Church)

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Third Sunday in Lent, which are Exodus 20:1-17, 1 Corinthians 1:18-25, and John 2:13-22.
2/26/202430 minutes, 38 seconds
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Lent 2 (B): Sometimes Darkness Can Show You the Light

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Second Sunday in Lent, which are Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16, Romans 4:13-25, and Mark 8:31-38.
2/19/202423 minutes, 59 seconds
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Ash Weds/Lent 1: HotTakes.com

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for Ash Wednesday, which are Joel 2:1-2,12-17 or Isaiah 58:1-12, 2 Corinthians 5:20b-6:10, and Matthew 6:1-6,16-21. They also take a look at the readings for the First Sunday in Lent, which are Genesis 9:8-17, 1 Peter 3:18-22, and Mark 1:9-15.
2/12/202421 minutes, 46 seconds
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Last Epiphany (B): Light in the Darkness

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Last Sunday after the Epiphany, which are 2 Kings 2:1-12, 2 Corinthians 4:3-6, and Mark 9:2-9.
2/5/202428 minutes, 52 seconds
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Epiphany 5 (B): I'll Consider It

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany, which are Isaiah 40:21-31, 1 Corinthians 9:16-23, and Mark 1:29-39.
1/29/202428 minutes, 11 seconds
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Epiphany 4 (B): Idols and Cheesesteaks

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Fourth Sunday after the Epiphany, which are Deuteronomy 18:15-20, 1 Corinthians 8:1-13, and Mark 1:21-28.
1/22/202425 minutes, 37 seconds
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Epiphany 3 (B): Second Chances and Letting Go

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Third Sunday after the Epiphany, which are Jonah 3:1-5, 10; 1 Corinthians 7:29-31; and Mark 1:14-20.
1/15/202420 minutes, 35 seconds
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Epiphany 2 (B): Wait in the Nazareth Cathedral

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Second Sunday after Epiphany, which are 1 Samuel 3:1-10(11-20), 1 Corinthians 6:12-20, and John 1:43-51.
1/8/202435 minutes, 7 seconds
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First Sunday After Epiphany (B): Two For One

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the First Sunday after the Epiphany, which are Genesis 1:1-5, Acts 19:1-7, and Mark 1:4-11.
1/3/202426 minutes, 36 seconds
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Christmas 1: Merry Christmas, Baby

Jacob and Aaron take us through the readings for the First Sunday after Christmas, which are Isaiah 61:10-62:3; Galatians 3:23-25, 4:4-7; and John 1:1-18.
12/29/202314 minutes, 24 seconds
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Advent 4 & Xmas Eve (B): A Surprise Under the Tree

Jacob and Aaron sled into the readings for the Fourth Sunday of Advent/Christmas Eve, which are 2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16, Romans 16:25-27, and Luke 1:26-38.
12/18/202340 minutes, 52 seconds
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Advent 3 (B): Know Your Role, Jambroni

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Third Sunday of Advent, which are Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11, 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24, and John 1:6-8,19-28. To respond to the appeal in the episode, please click here (https://mbird.com/support/).
12/11/202326 minutes, 1 second
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Advent 2 (B): Keeping Christ in Advent

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Second Sunday of Advent, which are Isaiah 40:1-11, 2 Peter 3:8-15a, and Mark 1:1-8.
12/4/202328 minutes, 6 seconds
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Advent 1 (A): Wait For It

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the First Sunday of Advent, which are Isaiah 64:1-9, 1 Corinthians 1:3-9, and Mark 13:24-37. To respond to the appeal in the episode, please click here (https://mbird.com/support/).
11/29/202335 minutes, 38 seconds
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Christ the King (A): King Me

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the last Sunday after Pentecost, which are Ezekiel 34:11-16, 20-24, Ephesians 1:15-23, and Matthew 25:31-46.
11/20/202329 minutes, 4 seconds
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Pentecost 25 (A): Wake Up!

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Twenty-Fifth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Zephaniah 1:7,12-18, 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11, and Matthew 25:14-30.
11/13/202325 minutes, 45 seconds
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Pentecost 24 (A): Jake's Psychodynamic State

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Twenty-Fourth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Amos 5:18-24, 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, and Matthew 25:1-13.
11/8/202324 minutes, 24 seconds
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All Saints (A): Get Out of Your Head (And Into the Gospel)

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for All Saints, which are Revelation 7:9-17, 1 John 3:1-3, and Matthew 5:1-12.
11/2/202327 minutes, 17 seconds
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Pentecost 22 (A): Jesus Makes the Different

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Twenty-Second Sunday after Pentecost, which are Leviticus 19:1-2,15-18, 1 Thessalonians 2:1-8, and Matthew 22:34-46.
10/23/202326 minutes, 20 seconds
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Pentecost 21 (A): Cyrus & The State

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Twenty-First Sunday after Pentecost, which are Isaiah 45:1-7, 1 Thessalonians 1:1-10, and Matthew 22:15-22.
10/17/202330 minutes, 18 seconds
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Pentecost 20 (A): God the Party Host

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Isaiah 25:1-9, Philippians 4:1-9, and Matthew 22:1-14.
10/10/202327 minutes, 45 seconds
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Pentecost 19 (A): God the Interventionist

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Isaiah 5:1-7, Philippians 3:4b-14, and Matthew 21:33-46.
10/2/202331 minutes, 42 seconds
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Pentecost 18 (A): Grapes, Empty Egos, and Vineyards

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Ezekiel 18:1-4,25-32, Philippians 2:1-13, and Matthew 21:23-32.
9/25/202327 minutes, 22 seconds
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Pentecost 17 (A): God is Not Fair (Hallelujah!)

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Jonah 3:10-4:11, Philippians 1:21-30, and Matthew 20:1-16.
9/18/202329 minutes, 37 seconds
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Pentecost 16 (A): The Gospel Means Forgiveness

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Genesis 50:15-21, Romans 14:1-12, and Matthew 18:21-35.
9/11/202330 minutes, 53 seconds
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Pentecost 15 (A): Saying Hard Things

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Ezekiel 33:7-11, Romans 13:8-14, and Matthew 18:15-20.
9/5/202335 minutes, 38 seconds
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Pentecost 14 (A): Peter Fails His Christology Class

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Jeremiah 15:15-21, Romans 12:9-21, and Matthew 16:21-28.
8/28/202331 minutes, 10 seconds
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Pentecost 13 (A): Be Reasonable

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Isaiah 51:1-6, Romans 12:1-8, and Matthew 16:13-20.
8/23/202332 minutes, 19 seconds
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Pentecost 12 (A): The Hummus Gets Cold

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Isaiah 56:1,6-8, Romans 11:1-2a, 29-32, and Matthew 15: (10-20), 21-28.
8/14/202332 minutes, 24 seconds
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Pentecost 11 (A): A Pedicure for Preachers

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost, which are 1 Kings 19:9-18, Romans 10:5-15, and Matthew 14:22-33.
8/7/202326 minutes, 21 seconds
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Pentecost 10/Transfiguration (A): Snow Is Glistening

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Tenth Sunday after Pentecost/Transfiguration, which are Exodus 34:29-35, 2 Peter 1:13-21, and Luke 9:28-36.
7/31/202329 minutes, 7 seconds
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Pentecost 9 (A): Genie in a Bottle

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Ninth Sunday after Pentecost, which are 1 Kings 3:5-12, Romans 8:26-39, and Matthew 13:31-33,44-52.
7/25/202336 minutes, 42 seconds
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Pentecost 8 (A): Jake is a Huge Darnel

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Eighth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Isaiah 44:6-8, Romans 8:12-25, and Matthew 13:24-30,36-43.
7/19/202323 minutes, 44 seconds
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Pentecost 7 (A): Word Up (Flamin' Hot Cheetos)

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Seventh Sunday after Pentecost, which are Isaiah 55:10-13, Romans 8:1-11, and Matthew 13:1-9,18-23.
7/10/202324 minutes, 29 seconds
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Pentecost 6 (A): Jesus Does the Macarena

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Sixth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Zechariah 9:9-12, Romans 7:15-25a, and Matthew 11:16-19, 25-30.
7/3/202334 minutes, 55 seconds
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Pentecost 5 (A): Dependence Day

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Fifth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Jeremiah 28:5-9, Romans 6:12-23, and Matthew 10:40-42.
6/26/202322 minutes, 27 seconds
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Pentecost 4 (A): Suffering, St. Ansgar, & Sparrows

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Fourth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Jeremiah 20:7-13, Romans 6:1b-11, and Matthew 10:24-39.
6/21/202328 minutes, 50 seconds
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Pentecost 3 (A): Spicy Law, Refreshing Gospel

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Third Sunday after Pentecost, which are Genesis 18:1-15, (21:1-7), Romans 5:1-8, and Matthew 9:35-10:8(9-23).
6/13/202335 minutes, 25 seconds
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Pentecost 2 (A): Sesquicentennial

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Second Sunday after Pentecost, which are Genesis 12:1-9, Romans 4:13-25, and Matthew 9:9-13, 18-26.
6/6/202329 minutes, 17 seconds
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Trinity (A): 3-in-1 Body Wash

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for Trinity Sunday, which are Genesis 1:1-2:4a, 2 Corinthians 13:11-13, and Matthew 28:16-20.
5/29/202328 minutes, 58 seconds
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Pentecost (A): Tongues of Fire

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Day of Pentecost, which are Acts 2:1-21 or Numbers 11:24-30, 1 Corinthians 12:3b-13 or Acts 2:1-21, and John 20:19-23 or John 7:37-39.
5/22/202335 minutes, 30 seconds
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Easter 7 (A): Strike a Pose

Jacob and Aaron hop into the readings for the Seventh Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 1:6-14, 1 Peter 4:12-14; 5:6-11, and John 17:1-11.
5/15/202332 minutes, 15 seconds
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Easter 6 (A): Live in NY Part Deux

Jacob and Aaron hop into the readings for the Sixth Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 17:22-31, 1 Peter 3:13-22, and John 14:15-21.
5/9/202326 minutes, 51 seconds
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Easter 5 (A): Live From NYC

Jacob and Aaron hop into the readings for the Fifth Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 7:55-60, 1 Peter 2:2-10, and John 14:1-14. Recorded live at the 15th Annual Mockingbird Conference in NYC.
5/3/202330 minutes, 24 seconds
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Easter 4 (A): Taco Sunday

Jacob and Aaron hop into the readings for the Fourth Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 2:42-47, 1 Peter 2:19-25, and John 10:1-10.
4/24/202326 minutes, 58 seconds
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Easter 3 (A): The Sun Was Not In Their Eyes (But the Son Was)

Jacob and Aaron hop into the readings for the Third Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 2:14a,36-41, 1 Peter 1:17-23, and Luke 24:13-35.
4/17/202319 minutes, 52 seconds
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Easter 2 (A): The Gospel is like Peeps

Jacob and Aaron hop into the readings for the Second Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 2:14a,22-32, 1 Peter 1:3-9, and John 20:19-31.
4/12/202333 minutes, 21 seconds
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Easter (A): Christ Is Risen/Thank You

Jacob and Aaron hop into the readings for Easter, which are Acts 10:34-43 or Jeremiah 31:1-6, Colossians 3:1-4 or Acts 10:34-43, and John 20:1-18 or Matthew 28:1-10.
4/4/202317 minutes, 13 seconds
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Good Friday (A): No Pole Vaulting

Jacob and Aaron hop into the readings for Good Friday, which are Isaiah 52:13-53:12, Hebrews 10:16-25 or Hebrews 4:14-16; 5:7-9, and John 18:1-19:42.
4/4/202323 minutes, 25 seconds
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Maundy Thursday (A): Power in the Blood

Jacob and Aaron hop into the readings for Maundy Thursday, which are Exodus 12:1-4, (5-10), 11-14, 1 Corinthians 11:23-26, and John 13:1-17, 31b-35.
4/4/202328 minutes, 46 seconds
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Palm Sunday (A): Earth, Wind, & Fire & Blood

Jacob and Aaron hop into the readings for Palm Sunday, which are Matthew 21:1-11, Isaiah 50:4-9a, Philippians 2:5-11, and Matthew 26:14- 27:66 or Matthew 27:11-54.
3/27/202332 minutes, 25 seconds
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Lent 5 (A): Not Mostly Dead

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Last Sunday in Lent, which are Ezekiel 37:1-14, Romans 8:6-11, and John 11:1-45.
3/20/202334 minutes, 9 seconds
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Lent 4 (A): The Natural Episode

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Fourth Sunday in Lent, which are 1 Samuel 16:1-13, Ephesians 5:8-14, and John 9:1-41.
3/13/202325 minutes, 45 seconds
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Lent 3 (A): A Very Special Lizzo Episode

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Third Sunday in Lent, which are Exodus 17:1-7, Romans 5:1-11, and John 4:5-42.
3/6/202335 minutes, 31 seconds
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Lent 2 (A): Late Night with Jesus of Nazareth

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Second Sunday in Lent, which are, Genesis 12:1-4a, Romans 4:1-5, 13-17, and John 3:1-17.
3/1/202326 minutes, 59 seconds
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Lent 1 (A): Snake Lunch

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the First Sunday in Lent, which are Genesis 2:15-17; 3:1-7, Romans 5:12-19, and Matthew 4:1-11.
2/21/202331 minutes, 14 seconds
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Ash Wednesday (A): All that Glitters is Not Ash Wednesday

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for Ash Wednesday, which are Joel 2:1-2,12-17; 2 Corinthians 5:20b-6:10; and Matthew 6:1-6,16-21.
2/21/202321 minutes, 58 seconds
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Last Epiphany (A): Ruby Soho

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Last Sunday after Epiphany, which are Exodus 24:12-18, 2 Peter 1:16-21, and Matthew 17:1-9.
2/15/202330 minutes, 56 seconds
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Epiphany 6 (A): The Unfree Will

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Sixth Sunday after the Epiphany, which are Deuteronomy 30:15-20, 1 Corinthians 3:1-9, and Matthew 5:21-37.
2/6/202336 minutes, 51 seconds
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Epiphany 5 (A): Say One Thing

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Fifth Sunday after Epiphany, which are Isaiah 58:1-9a, [9b-12], 1 Corinthians 2:1-12, [13-16], and Matthew 5:13-20.
1/31/202332 minutes, 5 seconds
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Epiphany 4 (A): Who Will God Choose?

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Fourth Sunday after the Epiphany, which are Micah 6:1-8, 1 Corinthians 1:18-31, and Matthew 5:1-12.
1/23/202329 minutes, 24 seconds
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Epiphany 3 (A): In Which Jake & Aaron Join WWE

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Third Sunday after the Epiphany, which are Isaiah 9:1-4, 1 Corinthians 1:10-18, and Matthew 4:12-23.
1/16/202327 minutes, 29 seconds
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Epiphany 2 (A): Eureka! Surprise! Aha!

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Second Sunday of the Epiphany, which are Isaiah 49:1-7, 1 Corinthians 1:1-9, and John 1:29-42.
1/10/202325 minutes, 30 seconds
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Epiphany 1 (A): Jesus Photobomber

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the First Sunday after the Epiphany, which are Isaiah 42:1-9, Acts 10:34-43, and Matthew 3:13-17.
1/3/202326 minutes, 36 seconds
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Christmas 1/Holy Name (A): Feast of the Snip

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the First Week After Christmas, which are Numbers 6:22-27, Galatians 4:4-7, or Philippians 2:5-11, and Luke 2:15-21.
12/26/202227 minutes, 5 seconds
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Christmas Eve/Day (A): This is (Pea) Nuts

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for Christmas Eve/Day, which are Isaiah 9:2-7, Titus 2:11-14, and Luke 2:1-14(15-20).
12/20/202233 minutes, 47 seconds
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Advent 4 (A): Jesus' Middle Name

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Fourth Sunday of Advent, which are Isaiah 7:10-16, Romans 1:1-7, and Matthew 1:18-25.
12/13/202222 minutes, 4 seconds
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Advent 3 (A): Fugazi in the Wilderness

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Third Sunday of Advent, which are Isaiah 35:1-10, James 5:7-10, and Matthew 11:2-11.
12/5/202230 minutes, 1 second
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Advent 2 (A): Stumpy Messiah

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Second Sunday of Advent, which are Isaiah 11:1-10, Romans 15:4-13, and Matthew 3:1-12.
11/28/202230 minutes, 41 seconds
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Advent 1 (A): Zack de la Rocha: "Happy Advent!"

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the First Sunday of Advent, which are Isaiah 2:1-5, Romans 13:11-14, and Matthew 24:36-44.
11/22/202225 minutes, 49 seconds
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Christ the King (C): Talking Turkey

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Last Sunday after Pentecost/Christ the King Sunday, which are Jeremiah 23:1-6, Colossians 1:11-20, and Luke 23:33-43.
11/15/202229 minutes, 6 seconds
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Pentecost 23 (C): Justice, Judgment, & Falling Temples

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Twenty-third Sunday after Pentecost, which are Malachi 4:1-2a, 2 Thessalonians 3:6-13, and Luke 21:5-19.
11/7/202223 minutes, 54 seconds
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All Saints' (C): (F)all Saints

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for All Saints', which are Job 19:23-27a, 2 Thessalonians 2:1-5, 13-17, and Luke 20:27-38.
11/1/202217 minutes, 30 seconds
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Pentecost 21 (C): Wee Little Bernie Madoff

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Twenty-First Sunday after Pentecost, which are Isaiah 1:10-18, 2 Thessalonians 1:1-4, 11-12, and Luke 19:1-10.
10/24/202226 minutes, 19 seconds
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Pentecost 20 (C): Libations of Mountain Dew

Jacob and Aaron jump into the readings for the Twentieth Sunday After Pentecost, which are Jeremiah 14:7-10,19-22, 2 Timothy 4:6-8,16-18, and Luke 18:9-14.
10/18/202227 minutes, 33 seconds
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Pentecost 19 (C): Beating Up God?

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Genesis 32:22-31, 2 Timothy 3:14-4:5, and Luke 18:1-8.
10/11/202230 minutes, 48 seconds
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Pentecost 18 (C): No Viking Cruises on the River Jordan

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are 2 Kings 5:1-3, 7-15c, 2 Timothy 2:8-15, and Luke 17:11-19.
10/3/202234 minutes, 15 seconds
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Pentecost 17 (C): Angry Prophets and Mustard Seeds

Jacob and Aaron look into the readings for the Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Habakkuk 1:1-4, 2:1-4, 2 Timothy 1:1-14, and Luke 17:5-10.
9/26/202229 minutes, 21 seconds
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Pentecost 16 (C): Giving It All Away

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Amos 6:1a,4-7, 1 Timothy 6:6-19, and Luke 16:19-31.
9/19/202226 minutes, 49 seconds
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Pentecost 15 (C): Fairness or Forgiveness?

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Amos 8:4-7, 1 Timothy 2:1-7, and Luke 16:1-13.
9/12/202232 minutes, 32 seconds
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Pentecost 14 (C): Gold Calf, Lost Sheep, Missing Coin

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Exodus 32:7-14, 1 Timothy 1:12-17, and Luke 15:1-10.
9/6/202228 minutes, 55 seconds
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Pentecost 13 (C): Philemon, Who Was a Person

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Deuteronomy 30:15-20, Philemon 1-21, and Luke 14:25-33.
8/29/202233 minutes, 1 second
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Pentecost 12 (C): The Worst Wedding Guest Ever

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Proverbs 25:6-7, Hebrews 13:1-8, 15-16, and Luke 14:1, 7-14.
8/24/202229 minutes, 42 seconds
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Pentecost 11 (C): Everyone Deserves Pizza

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost, which are Isaiah 58:9b-14, Hebrews 12:18-29, and Luke 13:10-17.
8/15/202228 minutes, 45 seconds
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Pentecost 10 (C): Vitamin T

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Tenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Jeremiah 23:23-29, Hebrews 11:29-12:2, and Luke 12:49-56.
8/8/202231 minutes, 13 seconds
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Pentecost 9 (C): Faith-uh

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Ninth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Genesis 15:1-6, Hebrews 11:1-3, 8-16, and Luke 12:32-40.
8/1/202218 minutes, 12 seconds
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Pentecost 8 (C): Be Like Cal, Not Jake

Jacob and Aaron venture into the readings for the Eighth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Ecclesiastes 1:2, 12-14; 2:18-23, Colossians 3:1-11, and Luke 12:13-21.
7/25/202230 minutes, 11 seconds
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Pentecost 7 (C): A Divine Pushover

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Seventh Sunday after Pentecost, which are Genesis 18:20-32, Colossians 2:6-15, (16-19), and Luke 11:1-13.
7/18/202221 minutes, 30 seconds
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Pentecost 6 (C): Tender Calves

Jacob and Aaron examine the readings for the Sixth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Genesis 18:1-10a, Colossians 1:15-28, and Luke 10:38-42.
7/11/202223 minutes, 43 seconds
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Pentecost 5 (C): Saved by the Samaritan

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Fifth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Amos 7:7-17, Colossians 1:1-14, and Luke 10:25-37.
7/4/202224 minutes, 4 seconds
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Pentecost 4 (C): Saint Paul Writes in Comic Sans

Jacob and Aaron walk through the readings for the Fourth Sunday after Pentecost, which are 2 Kings 5:1-14, Galatians 6:(1-6)7-16, and Luke 10:1-11, 16-20.
6/27/202227 minutes, 18 seconds
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Pentecost 3 (C): You're a Beautiful Orange Tree

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Third Sunday after Pentecost, which are 2 Kings 2:1-2, 6-14, Galatians 5:1,13-25, and Luke 9:51-62.
6/20/202222 minutes, 37 seconds
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Pentecost 2 (C): Touch o' Halloween

Jacob and Aaron take a glance at the readings for the Second Sunday after Pentecost, which are 1 Kings 19:1-4, (5-7), 8-15a, Galatians 3:23-29, and Luke 8:26-39.
6/13/202226 minutes, 17 seconds
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Trinity (C): Three in One

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for Trinity Sunday, which are Proverbs 8:1-4, 22-31, Romans 5:1-5, and John 16:12-15.
6/6/202227 minutes, 25 seconds
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Pentecost (C): 420 Pentecost

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Day of Pentecost, which are Acts 2:1-21 or Genesis 11:1-9, Romans 8:14-17 or Acts 2:1-21, and John 14:8-17, (25-27).
5/31/202223 minutes, 16 seconds
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Easter 7/After Ascension (C): Kevin Hart & The Tree of Life

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Seventh Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 16:16-34, Revelation 22:12-14,16-17,20-21, and John 17:20-26.
5/23/202221 minutes, 57 seconds
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Easter 6 (C): Healing Nations, Healing People (Recorded Live at Mbird NYC)

Jacob and Aaron take a glance at the readings for the Sixth Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 16:9-15, Revelation 21:10, 22-22:5, and John 14:23-29 or John 5:1-9.
5/16/202220 minutes, 57 seconds
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Easter 5 (C): Upside Down Glory (Recorded Live at Mbird NYC)

Jacob and Aaron venture into the readings for the Fifth Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 11:1-18, Revelation 21:1-6, and John 13:31-35. Recorded live at the 14th Annual Mockingbird Conference in NYC.
5/9/202234 minutes, 41 seconds
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Easter 4 (C): OK Shepherd Sunday

Jacob and Aaron examine the readings for the fourth Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 9:36-43, Revelation 7:9-17, and John 10:22-30.
5/3/202223 minutes, 20 seconds
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Easter 3 (C): The Last Place You Look

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Third Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 9:1-6, (7-20), Revelation 5:11-14, and John 21:1-19.
4/25/202227 minutes, 42 seconds
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Easter 2 (C): Doubt: Totally Normal, Totally Forgiven

Jacob and Aaron take a glimpse at the readings for the Second Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 5:27-32, Revelation 1:4-8, and John 20:19-31.
4/18/202223 minutes, 39 seconds
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Easter Sunday (C): Thou Shalt Not Preach a Long Sermon

Jacob and Aaron "hop" into the readings for Easter Sunday, which are Acts 10:34-43 or Isaiah 65:17-25, 1 Corinthians 15:19-26 or Acts 10:34-43, and John 20:1-18 or Luke 24:1-12.
4/11/202226 minutes, 41 seconds
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Holy Week (MT, GF) (C): The Shadow of the Cross

Jacob and Aaron consider the readings for Holy Week (Specifically Maundy Thursday & Good Friday), which are [Exodus 12:1-4, (5-10), 11-14, 1 Corinthians 11:23-26, John 13:1-17, 31b-35] and [Isaiah 52:13-53:12, Hebrews 10:16-25, and John 18:1-19:42].
4/7/202232 minutes, 42 seconds
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Palm Sunday (C): Jesus on a Donkey (and a Cross)

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for Palm Sunday, which are Luke 19:28-40, Isaiah 50:4-9a, Philippians 2:5-11, and Luke 22:14-23:56.
4/4/202224 minutes, 36 seconds
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Lent 5 (C): Nard & Chuckles

Jacob and Aaron examine the readings for the Fifth Sunday in Lent, which are Isaiah 43:16-21, Philippians 3:4b-14, and John 12:1-8.
3/29/202228 minutes, 26 seconds
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Lent 4 (C): Beth Moore and Clutching Pearls

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Fourth Sunday of Lent, which are Joshua 5:9-12, 2 Corinthians 5:16-21, and Luke 15:1-3, 11b-32.
3/21/202238 minutes, 40 seconds
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Lent 3 (C): Put Manure On It

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Third Sunday in Lent, which are Exodus 3:1-15, 1 Corinthians 10:1-13, and Luke 13:1-9.
3/14/202235 minutes, 2 seconds
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Lent 2 (C): We Move Away, God Moves Towards

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Second Sunday in Lent, which are Genesis 15:1-12,17-18, Philippians 3:17-4:1, and Luke 13:31-35.
3/7/202228 minutes, 10 seconds
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Lent 1 (C): Working Towards Legumes

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the First Sunday in Lent, which are Deuteronomy 26:1-11, Romans 10:8b-13, and Luke 4:1-13.
3/1/202225 minutes, 52 seconds
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Ash Wednesday (C): Mixed Emotions on Ash Weds

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for Ash Wednesday, which are Joel 2:1-2,12-17 or Isaiah 58:1-12, 2 Corinthians 5:20b-6:10, and Matthew 6:1-6,16-21.
3/1/202223 minutes, 50 seconds
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Last Epiphany/Transfiguration (C): Fancy Queso & Unveiled Faces

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Last Sunday after Epiphany, which are Exodus 34:29-35, 2 Corinthians 3:12-4:2, and Luke 9:28-36, [37-43a].
2/21/202232 minutes, 6 seconds
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Epiphany 7 (C): The Power of Love

2/14/202224 minutes, 7 seconds
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Epiphany 6 (C): Without Jesus We're Effed

Jacob and Aaron venture into the readings for the Sixth Sunday After the Epiphany, which are Jeremiah 17:5-10, 1 Corinthians 15:12-20, and Luke 6:17-26.
2/7/202234 minutes, 20 seconds
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Bonus Episode: Crafting a Gospel-Focused Sermon for Lent

From the SOS virtual event hosted by Jacob Smith, Aaron Zimmerman, and David Zahl. In which they talk about "Crafting a Gospel-Focused Sermon for Lent".
2/1/202258 minutes, 6 seconds
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Epiphany 5 (C): Burning Lips & Bottom-Dwellers

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany, which are Isaiah 6:1-8, [9-13], 1 Corinthians 15:1-11, and Luke 5:1-11.
1/31/202218 minutes, 17 seconds
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Epiphany 4 (C): The Voice

Jacob and Aaron examine the readings for the Fourth Sunday after the Epiphany, which are Jeremiah 1:4-10, 1 Corinthians 13:1-13, and Luke 4:21-30.
1/24/202230 minutes, 59 seconds
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Epiphany 3 (C): Diversity Day (Hold the Salad)

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Third Sunday after the Epiphany, which are Nehemiah 8:1-3, 5-6, 8-10, 1 Corinthians 12:12-31a, and Luke 4:14-21. Find out more about the SOS event at this link: https://mbird.com/same-old-song/crafting-the-gospel-focused-sermon-for-lent/
1/17/202230 minutes, 51 seconds
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Epiphany 2 (C): Jesus: All-Around Entertainer

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Second Sunday after Epiphany, which are Isaiah 62:1-5, 1 Corinthians 12:1-11, and John 2:1-11.
1/10/202227 minutes, 6 seconds
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Epiphany 1 (C): Jesus on the Naughty List

1/3/202228 minutes, 40 seconds
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Christmas 2 (C): Lexapro Sunday (Epiphany-ish)

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Second Sunday After Christmas, which are Jeremiah 31:7-14, Ephesians 1:3-6,15-19a, and Matthew 2:13-15,19-23.
12/28/202132 minutes, 44 seconds
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Christmas Eve/Day (C): Step into Christmas

12/20/202123 minutes, 8 seconds
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Advent 4 (C): Demi Barrymore

To respond to the opening appeal and support the work of Mockingbird, please click here (https://mbird.com/support/). All gifts are tax-deductible. Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Fourth Sunday of Advent, which are Micah 5:2-5a, Hebrews 10:5-10, and Luke 1:39-45, (46-55).
12/14/202133 minutes, 43 seconds
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Advent 3 (C): Pretty in Pink Sunday

Jacob and Aaron jump into the readings for the Third Sunday of Advent, which are Zephaniah 3:14-20, Philippians 4:4-7, and Luke 3:7-18.
12/7/202124 minutes, 58 seconds
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Advent 2 (C): Tiberius is Serious

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Second Sunday of Advent, which are Malachi 3:1-4, Philippians 1:3-11, and Luke 3:1-6.
12/1/202130 minutes, 31 seconds
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Advent 1 (C): Dadvent 1

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the First Sunday of Advent, which are Jeremiah 33:14-16, 1 Thessalonians 3:9-13, and Luke 21:25-36.
11/23/202124 minutes, 29 seconds
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Christ the King (B): Light of a Clear Blue Morning

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Last Sunday after Pentecost, which are 2 Samuel 23:1-7, Revelation 1:4b-8, and John 18:33-37.
11/15/202125 minutes, 23 seconds
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Pentecost 25 (B): Preaching the Promise in the Pain

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Twenty-Fifth Sunday after Pentecost, which are, 1 Samuel 1:4-20, 1 Samuel 2:1-10, Hebrews 10:11-14 (15-18) 19-25, and Mark 13:1-8.
11/8/202132 minutes, 58 seconds
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Pentecost 24 (B): All Saints (No More Tears)

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Twenty-Fourth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Ruth 3:1-5; 4:13-17, Hebrews 9:24-28, and Mark 12:38-44.
11/1/202128 minutes, 4 seconds
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Pentecost 23 (B): Churchoween

Jacob and Aaron check out the readings from the Twenty-Third Sunday after Pentecost, which are Ruth 1:1-18, Hebrews 9:11-14, Mark 12:28-34.
10/25/202128 minutes, 42 seconds
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Pentecost 22 (B): Keren-Happuch

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Twenty-Second Sunday after Pentecost, which are Job 42:1-6, 10-17, Hebrews 7:23-28, Mark 10:46-52.
10/18/202123 minutes, 14 seconds
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Pentecost 21 (B): God Doesn't Need Another Driver

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Twenty-First Sunday after Pentecost, which are Job 38:1-7, (34-41), Hebrews 5:1-10, Mark 10:35-45.
10/11/202126 minutes, 55 seconds
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Pentecost 20 (B): For All Naankind

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Job 23:1-9, 16-17, Hebrews 4:12-16, Mark 10:17-31.
10/4/202130 minutes, 30 seconds
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Pentecost 19 (B): Suffering Succotash

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Job 1:1; 2:1-10, Hebrews 1:1-4; 2:5-12, Mark 10:2-16.
9/27/202137 minutes, 31 seconds
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Pentecost 18 (B): Keep It Salty

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost which are, Esther 7:1-6, 9-10; 9:20-22, James 5:13-20, Mark 9:38-50.
9/20/202132 minutes, 59 seconds
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Pentecost 17 (B): You, Me, and Xena the Warrior Princess

Jacob and Aaron examine the readings for the Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Proverbs 31:10-31, James 3:13-4:3, 7-8a, Mark 9:30-37.
9/13/202126 minutes, 55 seconds
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Pentecost 16 (B): Get Wise

Jacob and Aaron zero in on the readings for the Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are, Proverbs 1:20-33, James 3:1-12, and Mark 8:27-38.
9/6/202133 minutes, 57 seconds
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Pentecost 15 (B): God's Favorites

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are, Proverbs 22:1-2, 8-9, 22-23, James 2:1-10, [11-13], 14-17, and Mark 7:24-37.
8/31/202134 minutes, 54 seconds
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Pentecost 14 (B): Sex, Stags, Gazelles, and Tolstoy

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are, Song of Solomon 2:8-13, James 1:17-27, and Mark 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23.
8/23/202131 minutes, 59 seconds
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Pentecost 13 (B): Paging Barry White

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are 1 Kings 8:[1, 6, 10-11], 22-30, 41-43, Ephesians 6:10-20, John 6:56-69.
8/17/202126 minutes, 30 seconds
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Pentecost 12 (B): Bread Bread Bread

Jacob and Aaron unpack the readings for the Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Proverbs 9:1-6, Ephesians 5:15-20, and John 6:51-58.
8/10/202119 minutes, 34 seconds
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Pentecost 11 (B): Ramblin' Man

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost, which are 2 Samuel 18:5-9, 15, 31-33, Ephesians 4:25-5:2, John 6:35, 41-51.
8/2/202127 minutes, 1 second
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Pentecost 10 (B): The Telenovela Episode (plus Nelly)

Jacob and Aaron consider the readings for the Tenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are 2 Samuel 11:26-12:13a, Ephesians 4:1-16, and John 6:24-35.
7/26/202129 minutes, 25 seconds
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Pentecost 9 (B): The Johannine Episode

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Ninth Sunday after Pentecost, which are 2 Samuel 11:1-15, Ephesians 3:14-21, and John 6:1-21.
7/19/202127 minutes, 14 seconds
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Pentecost 8 (B): I Don't Need No Stinking Temple

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Eighth Sunday after Pentecost, which are 2 Samuel 7:1-14a, Ephesians 2:11-22, and Mark 6:30-34, 53-56.
7/12/202120 minutes, 43 seconds
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Pentecost 7 (B): Dancing Machine

Jacob and Aaron explore the readings for the Seventh Sunday after Pentecost, which are (in Track 1) 2 Samuel 6:1-5, 12b-19, Ephesians 1:3-14, and Mark 6:14-29.
7/6/202130 minutes, 13 seconds
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Pentecost 6 (B): Strength in Weakness

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Sixth Sunday after Pentecost, which are (in Track 1) 2 Samuel 5:1-5, 9-10, 2 Corinthians 12:2-10, and Mark 6:1-13.
6/28/202131 minutes, 48 seconds
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Pentecost 5 (B): Invisible Touch

Jacob and Aaron discuss the readings for the Fifth Sunday after Pentecost, which are (in Track 1) 2 Samuel 1:1, 17-27; 2 Corinthians 8:7-15; and Mark 5:21-43.
6/21/202125 minutes, 6 seconds
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Pentecost 4 (B): Sunday School Craft Ideas — David & Goliath Edition

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Fourth Sunday after Pentecost, which are (in Track 1) 1 Samuel 17: (1a, 4-11, 19-23), 32-49; 2 Corinthians 6:1-13; and Mark 4:35-41.
6/15/202127 minutes, 2 seconds
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Pentecost 3 (B): Beauty Pageant in Bethlehem

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Third Sunday after Pentecost, which are (in Track 1) 1 Samuel 15:34-16:13, 2 Corinthians 5:6-10, [11-13],14-17, and Mark 4:26-34.
6/7/202129 minutes, 34 seconds
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Pentecost 2 (B): Sam, Superapostles, & Sabbath healing

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Second Sunday after Pentecost, which are (in Track 1) 1 Samuel 8:4-11, (12-15), 16-20, (11:14-15); 2 Corinthians 4:13-5:1; and Mark 3:20-35.
6/2/202129 minutes, 59 seconds
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Trinity Sunday (B): 3-in-1 Body Wash

Jacob and Aaron investigate the readings for the First Sunday after Pentecost, or Trinity Sunday, which are Isaiah 6:1-8, Romans 8:12-17, and John 3:1-17.
5/25/202128 minutes, 1 second
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Pentecost (B): Catch the Spirit

Jacob and Aaron examine the readings for the Day of Pentecost, which are Acts 2:1-21, Romans 8:22-27, and John 15:26-27; 16:4b-15.
5/18/202127 minutes, 29 seconds
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Easter 7 (B): You Can Call Me Spanky

Jacob and Aaron reflect on the readings for the Seventh Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 1:15-17, 21-26; 1 John 5:9-13; and John 17:6-19.
5/11/202130 minutes, 6 seconds
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Easter 6 (B): Same Old Song in the Book of Acts

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Sixth Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 10:44-48, 1 John 5:1-6, and John 15:9-17.
5/3/202127 minutes, 11 seconds
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Easter 5 (B): No Fruit Taping

Jacob and Aaron investigate the readings for the Fifth Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 8:26-40, 1 John 4:7-21, and John 15:1-8.
4/26/202134 minutes, 22 seconds
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Easter 4 (B): Good Shepherd Sunday

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Fourth Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 4:5-12, 1 John 3:16-24, John 10:11-18, and Psalm 23.
4/19/202124 minutes, 16 seconds
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Easter 3 (B): 2 Legit 2 Quit

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Third Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 3:12-19, 1 John 3:1-7, and Luke 24:36b-48.
4/12/202122 minutes, 14 seconds
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Easter 2 (B): Doubting T'Pau Sunday

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Second Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 4:32-35, 1 John 1:1-2:2, and John 20:19-31.
4/6/202131 minutes, 30 seconds
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Easter (B): It Really Happened

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for Easter Day, which are Isaiah 25:6-9, 1 Corinthians 15:1-11, Mark 16:1-8.
3/29/202119 minutes, 38 seconds
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Maundy Thursday / Good Friday

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for Maundy Thursday and Good Friday. For Maundy Thursday, they are Exodus 12:1-4, (5-10), 11-14, 1 Corinthians 11:23-26, and John 13:1-17, 31b-35. For Good Friday, they are Isaiah 52:13-53:12, Hebrews 10:16-25 or 4:14-16; 5:7-9, and John 18:1-19:42.
3/29/202131 minutes, 27 seconds
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Sunday of the Passion (B): Palm Sunday with Turmeric

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for Palm Sunday, which are Isaiah 50:4-9a, Philippians 2:5-11, and Mark 14:1-15:47.
3/23/202134 minutes, 50 seconds
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Lent 5 (B): Melchiz-a-what?

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Fifth Sunday in Lent, which are Jeremiah 31:31-34, Hebrews 5:5-10, and John 12:20-33.
3/15/202127 minutes, 17 seconds
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Lent 4 (B): Look at the Snake

Jacob and Aaron discuss the readings for the Fourth Sunday in Lent, which are Numbers 21:4-9, Ephesians 2:1-10, and John 3:14-21.
3/8/202129 minutes, 21 seconds
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Lent 3 (B): How to Preach Differently in Covid Times

Jacob and Aaron consider the readings for the Third Sunday in Lent, which are Exodus 20:1-17, 1 Corinthians 1:18-25, and John 2:13-22.
3/2/202132 minutes, 38 seconds
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Lent 2 (B): Appetite or Chinese Democracy

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Second Sunday in Lent, which are Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16, and Romans 4:13-25, and Mark 8:31-38.
2/23/202129 minutes, 36 seconds
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Lent 1 (B): Offensive in Waco

Jacob and Aaron investigate the readings for the First Sunday in Lent, which are Genesis 9:8-17, 1 Peter 3:18-22, and Mark 1:9-15.
2/22/202132 minutes, 2 seconds
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Ash Wednesday

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for Ash Wednesday, which are Joel 2:1-2,12-17, Isaiah 58:1-12, 2 Corinthians 5:20b-6:10, and Matthew 6:1-6,16-21.
2/16/202127 minutes, 29 seconds
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Epiphany 6 (B): Life is Lent

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Last Sunday after Epiphany, which are 2 Kings 2:1-12, 2 Corinthians 4:3-6, and Mark 9:2-9.
2/8/202127 minutes, 2 seconds
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Epiphany 5 (B): Narcissist Cards, Inc.

Jacob and Aaron examine the readings for the Fifth Sunday after Epiphany, which are Isaiah 40:21-31, 1 Corinthians 9:16-23, and Mark 1:29-39.
2/2/202134 minutes, 18 seconds
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Epiphany 4 (B): Eat a Steak (Or Not)

Jacob and Aaron explore the readings for the Fourth Sunday after Epiphany, which are Deuteronomy 18:15-20, 1 Corinthians 8:1-13, and Mark 1:21-28.
1/26/202124 minutes, 59 seconds
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Epiphany 3 (B): Everybody Hates a Pardon

Jacob and Aaron investigate the readings for the Third Sunday after Epiphany, which are Jonah 3:1-5, 10, 1 Corinthians 7:29-31, and Mark 1:14-20.
1/19/202129 minutes, 48 seconds
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Epiphany 2 (B): Let's Talk About Sex (and Jesus)

Jacob and Aaron dig into the readings for the Second Sunday after Epiphany, which are 1 Samuel 3:1-10(11-20), 1 Corinthians 6:12-20, and John 1:43-51.
1/11/202143 minutes, 38 seconds
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Epiphany 1 (B): Baptism of Our Lord

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the First Sunday after Epiphany, which are Genesis 1:1-5, Acts 19:1-7, and Mark 1:4-11.
1/5/202122 minutes, 40 seconds
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Christmas 2: There's Myrrh!

Jacob and Aaron unpack the readings for the second Sunday after Christmas, which are Jeremiah 31:7-14, Ephesians 1:3-6,15-19a, and Matthew 2:1-15, 19-23.
1/2/202132 minutes, 53 seconds
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Christmas 1: Dr Feelgood & the Kingston Trio

Jacob and Aaron delve into the readings for the first Sunday after Christmas, which are Isaiah 61:10-62:3, Galatians 3:23-25; 4:4-7, and John 1:1-18.
1/1/202125 minutes, 13 seconds
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Christmas Eve/Day (B): A Very Covid Christmas

Jacob and Aaron explore the readings for Christmas Day II, which are Isaiah 62:6-12, Titus 3:4-7, and Luke 2:1-20. They also consider the readings for Christmas Day III, which are Isaiah 52:7-10, Hebrews 1:1-12, and John 1:1-14.
12/21/202030 minutes, 57 seconds
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Advent 4 (B): Pilot of the Stone Temple

Jacob and Aaron tackle the readings for the Fourth Sunday of Advent, which are 2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16, Romans 16:25-27, and Luke 1:26-38.
12/14/202031 minutes, 58 seconds
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Advent 3 (B): Sisqo!

Jacob and Aaron dig into the readings for the Third Sunday of Advent, which are Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11, 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24, and John 1:6-8,19-28.
12/7/202024 minutes, 27 seconds
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Advent 2 (B): 15b — Don't Do It!

Jacob and Aaron take on the readings for the Second Sunday of Advent, which are Isaiah 40:1-11, 2 Peter 3:8-15a, Mark 1:1-8.
12/1/202027 minutes, 36 seconds
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Advent 1 (B): Zac De La Rocha Sez Happy Advent!

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the First Sunday of Advent, which are Isaiah 64:1-9, 1 Corinthians 1:3-9, and Mark 13:24-37.
11/23/202026 minutes, 35 seconds
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Christ the King (A): King of Kings

Jacob and Aaron examine the readings for the Last Sunday after Pentecost (Christ the King Sunday), which are Ezekiel 34:11-16, 20-24, Ephesians 1:15-23, and Matthew 25:31-46.
11/16/202028 minutes, 39 seconds
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Pentecost 24 (A): Bible Sunday & Quentin Tarantino

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Twenty-Fourth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Judges 4:1-7, 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11, and Matthew 25:14-30.
11/10/202031 minutes, 15 seconds
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Pentecost 23 (A): Dream Catchers and Soul Sleep (and Oil for Your Lamps)

Jacob and Aaron ponder the readings for the Twenty-Third Sunday after Pentecost, which are Joshua 24:1-3a, 14-25, 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, and Matthew 25:1-13.
11/2/202029 minutes, 7 seconds
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All Saints' (A): Grandpa Joe, Supervillain

Jacob and Aaron investigate the readings for All Saints' Day, which are Revelation 7:9-17, 1 John 3:1-3, and Matthew 5:1-12.
10/26/202029 minutes, 12 seconds
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Pentecost 21 (A)

Jacob and Aaron explore the readings for the Twenty-First Sunday after Pentecost, which are Deuteronomy 34:1-12, 1 Thessalonians 2:1-8, and Matthew 22:34-46.
10/19/202035 minutes, 25 seconds
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Pentecost 20 (A): La Nacha de Dios

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Exodus 33:12-23, 1 Thessalonians 1:1-10, and Matthew 22:15-22.
10/13/202028 minutes, 2 seconds
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Pentecost 19 (A): Episcopalingo, Golden Calves & Crazy Kings

Jacob and Aaron tackle the readings for the Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Exodus 32:1-14, Philippians 4:1-9, and Matthew 22:1-14.
10/5/202038 minutes, 50 seconds
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Pentecost 18 (A): You Can't Handle the Law

Jacob and Aaron dig into the readings for the Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Exodus 20:1-4, 7-9, 12-20, Philippians 3:4b-14, and Matthew 21:33-46.
9/28/202030 minutes, 26 seconds
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Pentecost 17 (A): Can I See Some ID?

Jacob and Aaron talk about the readings for the Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Exodus 17:1-7, Philippians 2:1-13, and Matthew 21:23-32.
9/21/202041 minutes, 56 seconds
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Pentecost 16 (A): 100 Episodes of Gospel Goodness

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Exodus 16:2-15, Philippians 1:21-30, and Matthew 20:1-16.
9/14/202034 minutes, 22 seconds
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Pentecost 15 (A): The Forgiveness Episode

Jacob and Aaron tackle the readings for the Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Exodus 14:19-31, Romans 14:1-12, and Matthew 18:21-35.
9/8/202032 minutes, 49 seconds
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Pentecost 14 (A) : Church is for Hypocrites

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Exodus 12:1-14, Romans 13:8-14, and Matthew 18:15-20.
9/1/202030 minutes, 14 seconds
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Pentecost 13 (A): Bedazzled — The One About Bathrooms

Jacob and Aaron analyze the readings for the Thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Exodus 3:1-15, Romans 12:9-21, Matthew 16:21-28.
8/25/202036 minutes, 26 seconds
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Pentecost 12 (A): Broken Rocks and God's Grace

Jacob and Aaron ponder the readings for the Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Exodus 1:8-2:10, Romans 12:1-8, and Matthew 16:13-20.
8/18/202035 minutes, 31 seconds
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Pentecost 11 (A): God — More of a Dog Person

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost, which are Genesis 45:1-15, Romans 11:1-2a, 29-32, and Matthew 15: (10-20), 21-28.
8/11/202027 minutes, 51 seconds
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Pentecost 10 (A): The White Album

Jacob and Aaron explore the readings for the Tenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Genesis 37:1-4, 12-28, Romans 10:5-15, and Matthew 14:22-33.
8/3/202030 minutes, 48 seconds
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Pentecost 9 (A): It's Not About You

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Ninth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Genesis 32:22-31, Romans 9:1-5, and Matthew 14:13-21.
7/28/202026 minutes, 37 seconds
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Pentecost 8 (A): Covid Raves, Wedding Banquets, and the Love of God

Jacob and Aaron explore the readings for the Eighth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Genesis 29:15-28, Romans 8:26-39, and Matthew 13:31-33,44-52.
7/21/202033 minutes, 11 seconds
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Pentecost 7 (A): Stone Temple Pillows

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Seventh Sunday after Pentecost, which are Genesis 28:10-19a, Romans 8:12-25, and Matthew 13:24-30,36-43.
7/13/202029 minutes, 52 seconds
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Pentecost 6 (A): Goofus & Gallant

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Sixth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Genesis 25:19-34, Romans 8:1-11, and Matthew 13:1-9,18-23.
7/6/202019 minutes, 28 seconds
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Pentecost 5 (A): Jesus The Bad Farmer

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Fifth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Genesis 24:34-38, 42-49, 58-67; Romans 7:15-25a; and Matthew 11:16-19, 25-30.
6/29/202019 minutes, 34 seconds
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Pentecost 4 (A): A Nice Cold Cup of Done

Jacob and Aaron discuss the readings for the Fourth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Genesis 22:1-14, Romans 6:12-23, and Matthew 10:40-42.
6/22/202032 minutes, 29 seconds
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Pentecost 3 (A)

Jacob and Aaron examine the readings for the Third Sunday after Pentecost, which are Genesis 21:8-21, Romans 6:1b-11, and Matthew 10:24-39.
6/15/202034 minutes, 7 seconds
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Pentecost 2 (A): The Missy Elliot Episode

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Second Sunday after Pentecost, which are Genesis 18:1-15, Romans 5:1-8, and Matthew 9:35-10:8.
6/9/202029 minutes, 17 seconds
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Trinity Sunday (A): God is Not an Egg

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the First Sunday after Pentecost (Trinity Sunday), which are Genesis 1:1-2:4a, 2 Corinthians 13:11-13, and Matthew 28:16-20.
6/1/202037 minutes, 17 seconds
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Day of Pentecost (A) : Like a Peppermint Latte

Jacob and Aaron consider the readings for Pentecost, which are or Numbers 11:24-30, Acts 2:1-21, and John 7:37-39.
5/25/202027 minutes, 24 seconds
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Easter 7 (A): Verily, I say unto thee, this episode is a good one

Jacob and Aaron dive into the readings for the Seventh Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 1:6-14, 1 Peter 4:12-14; 5:6-11, and John 17:1-11.
5/18/202033 minutes, 26 seconds
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Easter 6 (A): Fun Facts (About Angels and Ladies)

Jacob and Aaron dive into on the readings for the Sixth Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 17:22-31, 1 Peter 3:13-22, and John 14:15-21.
5/11/202039 minutes, 3 seconds
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Easter 5 (A): Greater Works

Jacob and Aaron reflect on the readings for the Fifth Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 7:55-60, 1 Peter 2:2-10, and John 14:1-14.
5/4/202034 minutes, 17 seconds
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Easter 4 (A): Good Shepherd Sunday

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Fourth Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 2:42-47, 1 Peter 2:19-25, John 10:1-10, and Psalm 23.
4/27/202027 minutes, 18 seconds
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Easter 3 (A): On the Road

Jacob and Aaron investigate the readings for the Third Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 2:14a,36-41, 1 Peter 1:17-23, and Luke 24:13-35.
4/20/202026 minutes, 3 seconds
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Easter 2 (A): Already and Not Yet (It's Not a Cliché)

Jacob and Aaron reflect on the readings for the Second Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 2:14a,22-32, 1 Peter 1:3-9, and John 20:19-31.
4/14/202031 minutes, 19 seconds
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Easter Day (A): Empty on Easter? So What!

Jacob and Aaron look at three of the readings for Easter: Acts 10:34-43, Colossians 3:1-4, and Matthew 28:1-10.
4/6/202019 minutes, 21 seconds
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Holy Week (A): It's Getting Worse (And God Is There)

Jacob and Aaron tackle the readings for Holy Week: Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, and Good Friday. They mainly look at Matthew 21:1-11; Exodus 12:1-4, (5-10), 11-14; John 13:1-17, 31b-35; and Matthew 26:14-27:66.
3/30/202033 minutes, 8 seconds
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Lent 5 (A): Pop Quiz!

Jacob and Aaron investigate the readings for the Fifth Sunday in Lent, which are Ezekiel 37:1-14, Romans 8:6-11, and John 11:1-45.
3/23/202022 minutes, 19 seconds
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Lent 4 (A): Karma is Dead, Jesus is Lord

Jacob and Aaron examine the readings for the Fourth Sunday in Lent, which are 1 Samuel 16:1-13, Ephesians 5:8-14, and John 9:1-41.
3/16/202032 minutes, 44 seconds
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Lent 3 (A): Just the Essentials

Jacob and Aaron dig into the readings for the Third Sunday in Lent, which are Exodus 17:1-7, Romans 5:1-11, John 4:5-42.
3/9/202035 minutes, 15 seconds
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Lent 2 (A)

Jacob and Aaron consider the readings for the Second Sunday in Lent, which are Genesis 12:1-4a, Romans 4:1-5, 13-17, John 3:1-17.
3/2/202031 minutes, 37 seconds
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Lent 1 (A): Without a Leg to Stand On

Jacob and Aaron take on the readings for the First Sunday in Lent, which are Genesis 2:15-17; 3:1-7, Romans 5:12-19, Matthew 4:1-11.
2/25/202030 minutes, 20 seconds
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Ash Wednesday

Jacob and Aaron talk about the readings for the Ash Wednesday, which are Joel 2:1-2,12-17, 2 Corinthians 5:20b-6:10, Matthew 6:1-6,16-21.
2/25/202020 minutes, 49 seconds
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Epiphany 7 (A): Fire on the Mountain

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Seventh Sunday after Epiphany, which are Exodus 24:12-18, 2 Peter 1:16-21, and Matthew 17:1-9.
2/17/202031 minutes, 1 second
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Epiphany 6 (A): Father Sergius

Jacob and Aaron dig into the readings for the Sixth Sunday after Epiphany, which are Deuteronomy 30:15-20, 1 Corinthians 3:1-9, and Matthew 5:21-37.
2/10/202032 minutes, 13 seconds
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Epiphany 5 (A): A Young Danny Devito

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the readings for the Fifth Sunday after Epiphany, which are Isaiah 58:1-12, 1 Corinthians 2:1-16, and Matthew 5:13-20.
2/3/202028 minutes, 19 seconds
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Epiphany 4 (A) / Presentation: Jesus in the Locker Room

Jacob and Aaron investigate the reading for the Fourth Sunday after Epiphany, which are Malachi 3:1-4, Hebrews 2:14-18, and Luke 2:22-40.
1/27/202032 minutes, 22 seconds
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Epiphany 3 (A): Between Therapists

Jacob and Aaron dig into the readings for the Third Sunday after Epiphany, which are Isaiah 9:1-4, 1 Corinthians 1:10-18, Matthew 4:12-23.
1/20/202031 minutes, 56 seconds
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Epiphany 2 (A): Gentiles on the Beach

Jacob and Aaron tackle the readings for the Second Sunday after Epiphany, which are Isaiah 49:1-7, 1 Corinthians 1:1-9, and John 1:29-42.
1/13/202024 minutes, 42 seconds
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Epiphany 1 (A): Bruised Reeds & Muddy Jesus

Jacob and Aaron take a look at the texts for the First Sunday after Epiphany, which are Isaiah 42:1-9, Acts 10:34-43, and Matthew 3:13-17.
1/7/202022 minutes
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Christmas 2: Christ the Toddler Doesn't Need Your Gifts

Jake and Aaron discuss the texts for the Second Sunday after Christmas which are Jeremiah 31:7-14; Ephesians 1:3-6,15-19a; and Matthew 2:1-12.
12/31/201925 minutes, 7 seconds
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Christmas 1: Now Before The Peloton Came

Jacob and Aaron delve into the texts for the First Sunday after Christmas, which are Isaiah 61:10-62:3; Galatians 3:23-25, 4:4-7; and John 1:1-18.
12/23/201923 minutes, 18 seconds
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Christmas Eve: For Unto You Is Born a Baby Yoda

Aaron and Jacob discuss the readings for Christmas Eve, which are Isaiah 9:2-7, Titus 2:11-14, and Luke: 1-14 (15-20). Merry Christmas!
12/23/201927 minutes, 3 seconds
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Advent 4 (A): And You Shall Call Him Manny

Jacob and Aaron cover the readings for the fourth Sunday of Advent, which are Isaiah 7:10-16, Romans 1:1-7, and Matthew 1:18-25.
12/16/201928 minutes, 28 seconds
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Advent 3 (A): Stir Up Sunday

Jacob and Aaron examine the readings for the third Sunday of Advent, which are Isaiah 35:1-10, James 5:7-10, and Matthew 11:2-11.
12/9/201928 minutes, 55 seconds
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Advent 2 (A): The Legend of Larry Washington

Jacob and Aaron tackle the readings for the second Sunday of Advent, which are Isaiah 11:1-10, Romans 15:4-13, and Matthew 3:1-12. You can respond to Aaron's opening invitation by clicking here (https://mbird.com/support/donate/).
12/3/201928 minutes, 44 seconds
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Advent 1 (A): Here We Go Again

Jacob and Aaron discuss the readings for the first Sunday of Advent, which are Isaiah 2:1-5, Romans 13:11-14, and Matthew 24:36-44.
11/26/201928 minutes, 22 seconds
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Christ the King (C): Purple Reign of Christ

Jacob and Aaron cover the readings for the the last Sunday after Pentecost, Christ the King Sunday, which are Jeremiah 23:1-6, Colossians 1:11-20, and Luke 23:33-43.
11/18/201928 minutes, 38 seconds
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Pentecost 23 (C): Doomsday

Jacob and Aaron tackle the readings for the Twenty-Third Sunday after Pentecost, which are Isaiah 65:17-25, 2 Thessalonians 3:6-13, Luke 21:5-19.
11/12/201929 minutes, 26 seconds
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Pentecost 22 (C): A Whole Episode Just About the Weather

Jacob and Aaron explore the readings for the Twenty-Second Sunday after Pentecost, which are Haggai 1:15b-2:9; 2 Thessalonians 2:1-5, 13-17; Luke 20:27-38.
11/4/201927 minutes, 41 seconds
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Pentecost 21 (C): How Soon Is Now

Jacob and Aaron tackle the readings for the Twenty-First Sunday after Pentecost which are Habakkuk 1:1-4, 2:1-4; 2 Thessalonians 1:1-4, 11-12; and Luke 19:1-10.
10/28/201936 minutes, 13 seconds
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Pentecost 20 (C): God Loves Turds

Aaron and Jacob discuss the readings for the Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost which are Joel 2:23-32; 2 Timothy 4:6-8,16-18; and Luke 18:9-14.
10/21/201929 minutes, 42 seconds
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Pentecost 19 (C): The New Boss

Jacob and Aaron cover the readings for the Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost which are Jeremiah 31:27-34, 2 Timothy 3:14-4:5, and Luke 18:1-8.
10/14/201927 minutes, 40 seconds
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Pentecost 18 (C): The Ordinariness of Holiness

Aaron and Jacob break down the readings for the Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost which are Jeremiah 29:1, 4-7, 2 Timothy 2:8-15, and Luke 17:11-19.
10/7/201926 minutes, 16 seconds
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Pentecost 17 (C): Serious Frickin’ Consequences

Jacob and Aaron discuss the readings for the Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost which are Lamentations 1:1-6 and 3:19-26; 2 Timothy 1:1-14; and Luke 17:5-10.
9/30/201929 minutes, 42 seconds
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Pentecost 16 (C): The Realest Estate

Aaron and Jacob cover the readings for the Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost which are Jeremiah 32:1-3a, 6-15; 1 Timothy 6:6-19; and Luke 16:19-31.
9/23/201921 minutes, 37 seconds
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Pentecost 15 (C): 5,000 lb. Jake

Jacob and Aaron tackle the readings for the Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost which are Jeremiah 8:18-9:1, 1 Timothy 2:1-7, and Luke 16:1-13.
9/16/201930 minutes, 55 seconds
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Pentecost 14 (C): You’re Not God’s Maybe

Jacob and Aaron run through the readings for the Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost which are Jeremiah 4:11-12, 22-28; 1 Timothy 1:12-17; Luke 15:1-10.
9/9/201923 minutes, 7 seconds
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Pentecost 13 (C): Slaves Turning into Bishops

Aaron and Jacob discuss the readings for the Thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost which are Jeremiah 18:1-11, Philemon 1-21, and Luke 14:25-33.
9/2/201932 minutes, 38 seconds
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Pentecost 12 (C): Free Oranges

Aaron and Jacob cover the readings for the Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost which are Jeremiah 2:4-13; Hebrews 13:1-8, 15-16; and Luke 14:1, 7-14.
8/26/201927 minutes, 8 seconds
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Pentecost 11 (C): In Jail in Coventry, Vermont

Jacob and Aaron run through the readings for the Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost which are Jeremiah 1:4-10, Hebrews 12:18-29, and Luke 13:10-17.
8/19/201928 minutes, 42 seconds
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Pentecost 10 (C): (S)Laying with Philistines

Aaron and Jacob discuss the readings for the Tenth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Isaiah 5:1-7, Hebrews 11:29-12:2, and Luke 12:49-56.
8/16/201924 minutes, 24 seconds
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Pentecost 9 (C): The Best Part of Waking Up is the Kingdom in Your Cup

Jacob and Aaron parse the readings for the Ninth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Isaiah 1:1, 10-20; Hebrews 11:1-3, 8-16; and Luke 12:32-40.
8/6/201928 minutes, 31 seconds
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Pentecost 8 (C): Jesus Is Not Your Bandaid

Jacob and Aaron break down the readings for the Eighth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Hosea 11:1-11, Colossians 3:1-11, and Luke 12:13-21.
7/30/201935 minutes, 52 seconds
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Pentecost 7 (C): Poolside with Gomer

Aaron and Jacob unpack the readings for the Seventh Sunday after Pentecost, which are Hosea 1:2-10; Colossians 2:6-15, (16-19); and Luke 11:1-13.
7/23/201930 minutes, 36 seconds
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Pentecost 6 (C): Jacob Smith, A Mary in a Martha World

Jacob and Aaron go through the readings for the Sixth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Amos 8:1-12, Colossians 1:15-28, and Luke 10:38-42.
7/16/201917 minutes, 42 seconds
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Pentecost 5 (C): Pour Some Sugar on Me

Aaron and Jacob review the readings for the Fifth Sunday after Pentecost, which are Amos 7:7-17, Colossians 1:1-14, and Luke 10:25-37.
7/8/201934 minutes, 58 seconds
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Pentecost 4 (C): So Fresh and So Clean

Jacob and Aaron guide us through the readings for the Fourth Sunday after Pentecost, which are2 Kings 5:1-14; Galatians 6:(1-6)7-16; and Luke 10:1-11, 16-20.
7/1/201929 minutes, 51 seconds
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Pentecost 3 (C): Fire and Sonshine

Aaron and Jacob survey the readings for the Third Sunday after Pentecost, which are 2 Kings 2:1-2, 6-14; Galatians 5:1,13-25; and Luke 9:51-62.
6/25/201930 minutes, 53 seconds
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Pentecost 2 (C): Summer Slashers

Jacob and Aaron discuss the readings for the Second Sunday after Pentecost (C), which are 1 Kings 19:1-15a, Galatians 3:23-29, and Luke 8:26-39.
6/17/201930 minutes, 41 seconds
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Pentecost 1 (C): Trinity This...

Aaron and Jacob parse the readings for the First Sunday after Pentecost, also appointed as Trinity Sunday in the lectionary. Those texts are Proverbs 8:1-4, 22-31; Romans 5:1-5; and John 16:12-15.
6/11/201930 minutes, 42 seconds
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Day of Pentecost (C): Smokin' Ziggurats

Jacob and Aaron unpack the readings for the Day of Pentecost, which are Genesis 11:1-9, Acts 2:1-21, and John 14:8-17.
6/4/201925 minutes, 18 seconds
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Seventh Sunday of Easter (C): Cuticles in Heaven

Aaron and Jacob break down the readings for the Seventh Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 16:16-34; Revelation 22:12-14,16-17,20-21; and John 17:20-26.
5/28/201933 minutes, 38 seconds
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Also Live from New York It's... Easter 6 (C)!

Recorded live at the 2019 Mockingbird Conference in NYC, Jacob and Aaron jump into the readings for the Sixth Sunday in Easter, which are Acts 16:9-15, Revelation 21:10, 22-22:5, and John 14:23-29.
5/22/201925 minutes, 13 seconds
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Live from New York It's... Easter 5 (C)!

Recorded live at the 2019 Mockingbird Conference in NYC, Aaron and Jacob discuss the readings for the Fifth Sunday in Easter, which are Acts 11:1-18, Revelation 21:1-6, and John 13:31-35.
5/14/201927 minutes, 40 seconds
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Fourth Sunday of Easter (C): The Rantiest Episode Ever

Jacob and Aaron walk through the readings for the Fourth Sunday of Easter, which are Acts 9:36-43, Revelation 7:9-17, and John 10:22-30.
5/7/201928 minutes, 56 seconds
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Third Sunday of Easter (C): High Horses and Wet Fishermen

Aaron and Jacob guide us through the readings for the Third Sunday in Easter, which are Acts 9:1-6, (7-20); Revelation 5:11-14; and John 21:1-19.
4/30/201935 minutes, 16 seconds
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Second Sunday of Easter (C): What's Love Got To Do With It?

Jacob and Aaron survey the readings for the Second Sunday of Easter AKA Low Sunday, which are Acts 5:27-32, Revelation 1:4-8, and John 20:19-31.
4/25/201926 minutes, 56 seconds
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Easter (C): Get Your Peep On!

Aaron and Jacob dive into the readings for Easter Sunday, which are Isaiah 65:17-25, 1 Corinthians 15:19-26, and Luke 24:1-12.
4/16/201923 minutes, 1 second
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Maundy Thursday & Good Friday: Lights Out

Jacob and Aaron go through the readings for both Maundy Thursday (Exodus 12:1-14; 1 Corinthians 11:23-26; and John 13:1-17, 31b-35) and Good Friday (Isaiah 52:13-53:12; Hebrews 10:16-25; Hebrews 4:14-16, 5:7-9; and John 18:1-19:42).
4/14/201927 minutes, 11 seconds
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Palm Sunday: The Rocks Cry Out

Aaron and Jacob tackle the Gospel readings for Palm Sunday, which are Luke 19:28-40 and Luke 22:14-23:56.
4/8/201929 minutes, 30 seconds
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Lent 5 (C): Grapes on the Couch

Jake and Aaron unpack the readings for the Fifth Sunday in Lent which are Isaiah 43:16-21, Philippians 3:4b-14, and John 12:1-8. Oh and the Collect they mention is: "Almighty God, you alone can bring into order the unruly wills and affections of sinners: Grant your people grace to love what you command and desire what you promise; that, among the swift and varied changes of the world, our hearts may surely there be fixed where true joys are to be found; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen."
4/1/201926 minutes, 53 seconds
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Lent 4 (C): The One About Circumcision

Aaron and Jacob discuss the readings for the Fourth Sunday in Lent, which are Joshua 5:9-12, 2 Corinthians 5:16-21 and Luke 15:1-3, 11b-32.
3/25/201929 minutes, 44 seconds
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Lent 3 (C): Not Quetzalcoatl!

Jacob and Aaron walk us through the readings for the Third Sunday in Lent, which are Exodus 3:1-15, 1 Corinthians 10:1-13, and Luke 13:1-9.
3/18/201929 minutes, 46 seconds
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Lent 2 (C): Unemployed in Greenland

Aaron and Jacob break down the text for the Second Sunday in Lent, which are Genesis 15:1-12,17-18; Philippians 3:17-4:1; and Luke 13:31-35.
3/11/201923 minutes, 15 seconds
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Lent 1 (C): Welcome to the Jungle

Aaron and Jacob take the plunge into the purple season, discussing the readings for the First Sunday in Lent, which are Deuteronomy 26:1-11, Romans 10:8b-13, and Luke 4:1-13.
3/7/201924 minutes, 27 seconds
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Ash Wednesday (All Years)

Jacob and Aaron parse the readings for Ash Wednesday, which are Joel 2:1-2,12-17; 2 Corinthians 5:20b-6:10; and Matthew 6:1-6,16-21.
3/2/201921 minutes, 50 seconds
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Last Sunday of Epiphany (C): Get Shiny

Aaron and Jacob peruse the readings for the Last Sunday after Epiphany, which are Exodus 34:29-35, 2 Corinthians 3:12-4:2, and Luke 9:28-36, [37-43a].
2/26/201928 minutes, 50 seconds
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Epiphany 7 (C): God's Dirty Hands

Aaron and Jacob review the readings for the Seventh Sunday in Epiphany, which are Genesis 45:3-11, 15; 1 Corinthians 15:35-38, 42-50; and Luke 6:27-38.
2/14/201932 minutes, 16 seconds
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Epiphany 6 (C): Filled With Cholesterol... and Sin

Jacob and Aaron explore the readings for the Sixth Sunday of Epiphany, which are Jeremiah 17:5-10, 1 Corinthians 15:12-20, and Luke 6:17-26.
2/11/201928 minutes, 55 seconds
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Epiphany 5 (C): No Myth

Jacob and Aaron dig into the readings for the Fifth Sunday after Epiphany, which are Isaiah 6:1-8, [9-13]; 1 Corinthians 15:1-11; and Luke 5:1-11.
2/4/201926 minutes, 52 seconds
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Epiphany 4 (C): Jets Win!

Aaron and Jacob unpack the readings for the Fourth Sunday after Epiphany, which are Jeremiah 1:4-10, 1 Corinthians 13:1-13, and Luke 4:21-30.
1/28/201923 minutes, 8 seconds
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Epiphany 3 (C): Nehi Cola and the Leveling Cross

Aaron and Jacob discuss the readings for the Third Sunday after Epiphany, which are Nehemiah 8:1-3, 5-6, 8-10; 1 Corinthians 12:12-31a; and Luke 4:14-21.
1/21/201923 minutes, 8 seconds
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Epiphany 2 (C): 24-Hour Gyms and 3-Day Raves

Jacob and Aaron break down the readings for the Second Sunday after the Epiphany, which are Isaiah 62:1-5, 1 Corinthians 12:1-11, and John 2:1-11.
1/14/201925 minutes, 53 seconds
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Epiphany 1 (C): Jesus Swims with Sinners

Aaron and Jacob take us through the texts for the First Sunday after Epiphany, which are Isaiah 43:1-7, Acts 8:14-17, and Luke 3:15-17 & 21-22.
1/7/201921 minutes, 17 seconds
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Epiphany: Magi - You Gotta Keep 'Em Separated

Aaron and Jacob discuss the readings for Epiphany Sunday, which are Isaiah 60:1-6, Ephesians 3:1-12, and Matthew 2:1-12.
12/31/201819 minutes, 48 seconds
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Christmas 1: Barry Gibb Talk Show

Jacob and Aaron discuss the readings for the First Sunday after Christmas, which are Isaiah 61:10-62:3; Galatians 3:23-25, 4:4-7; and John 1:1-18
12/27/201822 minutes, 16 seconds
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Christmas Eve: Rosy Cheeks, Sketchy Shepherds

Jacob and Aaron break down the readings Christmas II, which are Isaiah 62:6-12, Titus 3:4-7 and Luke 2:(1-7)8-20. Merry merry!
12/19/201824 minutes, 17 seconds
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Advent 4 (C): CVS Christmas

Aaron and Jacob unpack the readings for the Fourth Sunday in Advent, which are Micah 5:2-5a, Hebrews 10:5-10, and Luke 1:39-45.
12/18/201818 minutes, 42 seconds
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Advent 3 (C): Speedy Delivery/Kanye

Jacob and Aaron unpack the readings for the Third Sunday of Advent (Year C), which are Zephaniah 3:14-20, Philippians 4:4-7, and Luke 3:7-18.
12/11/201831 minutes, 27 seconds
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Second Sunday of Advent (Year C)

Aaron and Jacob explore the readings for the Second Sunday of Advent (Year C): Malachi 3:1-4, Philippians 1:3-11 and Luke 3:1-6.
12/4/201822 minutes, 30 seconds
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First Sunday of Advent (Year C)

The return of Same Old Song! Jacob Smith and new co-host Aaron Zimmerman dive into the lectionary readings for the First Sunday of Advent (Year C): Jeremiah 33:14-16, 1 Thessalonians 3:9-13, and Luke 21:25-36.
11/27/201823 minutes, 40 seconds
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Episode 19: Blinded By The Light

In this episode we discuss the lectionary readings for the fourth Sunday in Lent (A): 1 Samuel 16:1-13, Ephesians 5:8-14 and John 9:1-41. Show Notes: Of all the emotions associated with darkness, none is more powerful than depression. Those of us who have experienced it know that, like darkness, depression is frightening. The great American writer David Foster Wallace was not exaggerating when he described depression as a “large dark billowing shape,” “the billowing black sail of hell.” Sigmund Freud theorized that depression is anger turned inward. Child psychologist Dorothy Martyn defines it as “a loss of stature in your own eyes.” As we all know, anger at oneself and loss of stature can be justified. In my own life, depression has always had a trigger, usually a perceived failure of some kind— something as significant as the break-up of a relationship or as trivial as the purchase of the wrong kind of air-conditioner. Still, anyone who has been depressed, or dealt with a depressed person, knows that it is a sickness that cannot be cured by the sufferer. No amount of telling a depressed person not to be depressed— or explaining to them why they shouldn’t be— has any effect, other than often making the situation worse. In fact, the condition feeds on itself to the point where the depression can become indistinguishable from the person. To a depressed person, the Apostle Paul’s assertion that apart from the Lord we are not only in darkness, but that we are the darkness, does not sound so far-fetched. So what is the answer? Can a depressed person be helped? How does the light get through? Sometimes nothing works, not even medication. But other times, the “black sail” is pierced by compassion. Someone, maybe a good therapist or pastor, tries to understand and empathize with the pain rather than oppose it, and as a result, the depression begins to lift. Light shines into the darkness from outside, in the form of a loving and patient advocate. It is not surprising, then, that Jesus is called the Light of the World (John 8: 12). He was and is the very embodiment of Compassion, the one who died for people who have every reason to be depressed. But through his death and resurrection, we are made light. Our feelings, as dark as they may be, no longer have the final word. We can boldly join The Smiths in singing, “There is a light that never goes out.” -David Zahl As sheer drama, this trial scene [in chapter 9] is one of the most brilliant passages in the gospel, rich in the tragic irony of which the evangelist is master. The one-time blind beggar stands before his betters, to be badgered into denying the one thing of which he is certain...But the defendant proper is Jesus himself, judged in absentia. In some sort, the man whom Christ enlightened pleads the cause of the Light. When he is "cast out" it is Christ whom the judges have rejected. -C.H. Dodd
3/21/201722 minutes, 47 seconds
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Episode 18: Bitterness, Failure and Freedom

In this episode we discuss the Lectionary texts for the third Sunday in Lent (A): Exodus 17:1-7, Romans 5:1-11 and John 4:5-42. Show Notes: In his autobiography, Days of Grace, tennis champion Arthur Ashe wrote: “I have always been a firm believer in the therapeutic value of adversity. Of all people, athletes must reach an accommodation with losing, and learn to make the best of it.” Ashe died of AIDS received through an injection given by a tainted needle. He wrote his story knowing that he was leaving behind fame, fortune, and a lovely family. For every Olympic athlete we watch as they receive their gold medal, there are thousands of others who almost made it, but didn’t. I was present when a friend lost his chance of going to the 1964 Tokyo Olympics by a hair. His non-Christian father was mortified at his failure, but my friend grew through it into a strong servant of Christ. Compare that with the sign on the walls of the Princeton University boathouse: “Show me a good loser, and I’ll show you a loser.” The secular mind dismisses the “therapeutic value of adversity” as weakness. But Paul invites us in Romans 5: 1-5 to “stand” in a different place, the place of “grace.” In this place, we discover a past in which we are at peace with God, a present in which we have full access to His mercy, and a future hope in sharing in His glory. But these gifts were won at the cost of suffering, namely Christ’s, and remain ours as we rethink the role of suffering in God’s world. Looking at verses three and four, suffering has such a therapeutic role in our lives that, rightly received, it enables us to endure the present while looking in hope to the future. This, says Paul, is the root of character— something that is always hammered out on the anvil of pain. Fortunately, we do not have to gut this out as if it were up to us to manufacture character with steely determination. There is a waterfall of love cascading down on our heads, which turns character-building into spontaneous excitement, and suffering into joy. -Peter Moore, The Mockingbird Devotional As Our Lord had already said to the woman at the well in Samaria, a woman with an insatiable thirst for me, "Whosover drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life" (John 4:14).This is an amazing offer. Not only does the Lord claim to fill the thirsty soul's need, but promises to make him able to quench the spiritual thirst of others. This alone fits the pastor for his task of pastoral cure. In the feeding of the five thousand Christ had also proclaimed Himself the Bread of Life, the Bread of God coming down from heaven for the life of the world, so that "he that cometh unto Me shall never hunger: and he that believeth on Me shall never thirst" (John 6:48, 33, 35). The indissoluble union of God and man within His own Person is also part of the claim Our Lord made at this Feast of the Tabernacles (John 8:14, 16, 23, 28, 29, 51, 58). The words of Christ, are, He claims, the words of God. When He invites us to union with Himself, it is God who invites us. His gracious offer of Himself with the promise to satisfy all our urgent need for life is God's gracious offer to Himself. -Frank Lake, Clinical Theology
3/14/201721 minutes, 41 seconds
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Episode 17: Episode 17: Blessing, Belief and New Birth

In this episode we discuss the lectionary texts for the Second Sunday in Lent: Genesis 12:1-4a; Romans 4:1-5, 13-17 and John 3:1-17. Show Notes: I’ve managed to see Scorsese’s Silence twice in the last couple of weeks. It literally silenced me. It’s a surpassingly beautiful movie — but its genius lies in the complexity of its understanding of what faith really is. For some secular liberals, faith is some kind of easy, simple abdication of reason — a liberation from reality. For Scorsese, it’s a riddle wrapped in a mystery, and often inseparable from crippling, perpetual doubt. You see this in the main protagonist’s evolution: from a certain, absolutist arrogance to a long sacrifice of pride toward a deeper spiritual truth. Faith is a result, in the end, of living, of seeing your previous certainties crumble and be rebuilt, shakily, on new grounds. God is almost always silent, hidden, and sometimes most painfully so in the face of hideous injustice or suffering. A life of faith is therefore not real unless it is riddled with despair. There are moments — surpassingly rare but often indelible — when you do hear the voice of God and see the face of Jesus. You never forget them — and I count those few moments in my life when I have heard the voice and seen the face as mere intimations of what is to come. But the rest is indeed silence. And the conscience is something that cannot sometimes hear itself. I’ve rarely seen the depth of this truth more beautifully unpacked. Which is why, perhaps, the movie has had such a tiny audience so far. Those without faith have no patience for a long meditation on it; those with faith in our time are filled too often with a passionate certainty to appreciate it. And this movie’s mysterious imagery can confound anyone. But its very complexity and subtlety gave me hope in this vulgar, extremist time. We cannot avoid this surreality all around us. But it may be possible occasionally to transcend it. -Andrew Sullivan, http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2017/02/andrew-sullivan-the-madness-of-king-donald.html
3/7/201722 minutes, 30 seconds
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Episode 16: Episode 16: He Comes To The Desert Alone

In this episode we discuss the Lectionary texts for the first Sunday in Lent: Genesis 2:15-17; 3:1-7, Romans 5:12-19 and Matthew 4:1-11.
3/2/201722 minutes, 38 seconds
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Episode 15: Episode 15: Mountains & Myths

This week we reflect on the readings for this week in year A, which is the eighth and last Sunday in Epiphany: Exodus 24:12-18, 2 Peter 1:16-21, Matthew 17:1-9. Show Notes: All these themes—appearance of the glory, divine condescension, building of a tabernacle—return in the tale of the transfiguration, a set of parallels not lost on the fathers of the church. Indeed, the Greek Fathers were fond of drawing parallels between this epiphany of the incarnate Son and its important forerunner in the Old Testament. What Brevard Childs, in his Exodus, wrote in summary of chapter 24 could just as easily be transferred to the moment of the transfiguration: “But in light of God’s complete otherness [which occasioned all the concern for purity of body and character—GAA], the all-encompassing focus of the chapter falls on God’s mercy and gracious condescension. It is this theme which lies at the heart of the witness of the Sinai Covenant.” -Gary A. Anderson It is clear, in any case, that in these verses 2 Peter is addressing both the power and danger of biblical texts. Modern Christians know both well. Biblical texts often speak to us with all the wonder and clarity of the morning star rising in our hearts. These same texts divide us from one another. As we well know, we often choose who will be in or out of a community by how they read or do not read certain texts. 2 Peter witnesses to both. It includes as aggressive an attack on Christian opponents as we have in the New Testament. And it includes a series of wonderful and gentle images of the Christian life. The Bible is a powerful and dangerous text. -Lewis R. Donelson These connections also shed new light on the meaning of the fundamental claim of the prologue to John’s Gospel, where the Evangelist sums up the mystery of Jesus: “And the Word became flesh and pitched his tent among us” (Jn 1:14). Indeed, the Lord has pitched the tent of his body among us and has thus inaugurated the messianic age. Following this line of thought, Gregory of Nyssa reflected on the connection between the Feast of Tabernacles and the Incarnation in a magnificent text. He says that the Feast of Tabernacles, though constantly celebrated, remained unfulfilled. “For the true Feast of Tabernacles had not yet come. According to the words of the Prophet, however [an allusion to Psalm 118:27], God, the Lord of all things, has revealed himself to us in order to complete the construction of the tabernacle of our ruined habitation, human nature” (De anima, PG 46, 132B, cf. Daniélou, Bible and Liturgy, pp. 344f.) -Benedict XVI
2/21/201726 minutes, 12 seconds
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Episode 14: Episode 14: All You Need Is Love

This week we reflect on the readings for this week in year A, which is the seventh Sunday in Epiphany: Leviticus 19:1-2, 9-18; 1 Corinthians 3:10-11, 16-23 and Matthew 5:38-48. Show Notes: It is all finally one big story and as Paul knows and tells the Corinthians, it is all finally also a story of Grace, Grace, Grace. If we are properly gob smacked by the revelation that each of us now houses something of the divine, we are further bowled over to see that even when we do this imperfectly, we get saved anyway. The Lectionary asks us to skip verses 12-15. Granted, Paul’s imagery here is a little odd and this passage could easily be twisted into some works-righteousness scheme of salvation if one were not careful. But in context it is still all about grace. God does expect us to build on the solid foundation that just is Christ and his Gospel. Whether we build mightily and sturdily or poorly and weakly, however, we will still emerge saved because Temples of God’s Holy Spirit are just going to endure with that Spirit one way or the other! -Scott Hoezee more at: http://cep.calvinseminary.edu/sermon-starters/epiphany-7a/?type=lectionary_epistle#sthash.bRlPyaas.dpuf I work as a chaplain for a non-profit hospice in Las Vegas. Anyone who has served as a chaplain will tell you that the work can be routine but it is never dull. The problems and situations that you find yourself working through with people in hospice run the gamut from the touching to the tragic to the hilarious (“hospice humor” is a thing – next time you meet a hospice worker, ask). But one thing has never come up in seven years. Nobody has ever asked me if they’ve gotten their politics correct. I’ve never heard a confession that someone had not stood up for marginalized people enough. Never have I had to absolve somebody on a deathbed for “being complicit in unjust structures.” There has never been a long dialogue between a hospice patient and me examining if the Kingdom has been sufficiently brought about by someone’s earthly efforts. Politics has a way of becoming a non-factor in one’s life after a terminal diagnosis. -http://www.mbird.com/2017/02/letter-from-a-hospice-chaplain-in-las-vegas/ http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-foster-father-sick-children-2017-story.html
2/16/201720 minutes, 56 seconds
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Episode 13: Episode 13: You've Heard It Said....

This week we reflect on the readings for this week in year A, which is the sixth Sunday in Epiphany: Deuteronomy 30:15-20, 1 Corinthians 3:1-9 and Matthew 5:21-37. Show Notes: According to Gowan (1998), the prophets to ancient Israel did not preach a legalistic message of moral reformation but an evangelistic message of faith in the God who raises the dead. From the first days of the human race in Eden, the curse threatened against sin is "dying you shall die," and the same curse hangs over Israel after Yahweh cut covenant with it at Sinai. The message of the prophets is not, "Israel has sinned: therefore, Israel needs to get its act together or it will die." The message is, "Israel has sinned; therefor Israel must die, and its only hope is to entrust itself to a God who will give it new life on the far side of death." Or even, "Israel has sinned; Israel is already dead. Cling to the God who raises the dead." This is precisely the prophetic message of 1-2 Kings, which systematically dismantles Israel's confidence in everything but the omnipotent mercy and patience of God. -Peter Leithart Some Protestants don’t view Roman Catholics as Christians, and won’t acknowledge the Roman Catholic Church as a true church. A Reformational Catholic regards Catholics as brothers, and regrets the need to modify that brotherhood as “separated.” To a Reformational Catholic, it’s blindingly obvious that there’s a billion-member Church of Jesus Christ centered in Rome. Because it regards the Roman Catholic Church as barely Christian, Protestantism leaves Roman Catholicism to its own devices. “They” had a pedophilia scandal, and “they” have a controversial pope. A Reformational Catholic recognizes that turmoil in the Roman Catholic Church is turmoil in his own family. -Peter Leithart Let us try to draw out the essential points of this conversation in order to know Jesus and to understand our Jewish brothers better. The central point, it seems to me, is wonderfully revealed in one of the most moving scenes that Neusner presents in his book. In his interior dialogue Neusner has just spent the whole day following Jesus, and now he retires for prayer and Torah study with the Jews of a certain town, in order to discuss with the rabbi of that place—once again he is thinking in terms of contemporaneity across the millennia—all that he has heard. The rabbi cites from the Babylonian Talmud: “Rabbi Simelai expounded: ‘Six hundred and thirteen commandments were given to Moses, three hundred and sixty-five negative ones, corresponding to the number of the days of the solar year, and two hundred forty-eight positive commandments, corresponding to the parts of man’s body. “‘David came and reduced them to eleven…. “‘Isaiah came and reduced them to six…. “‘Isaiah again came and reduced them to two…. “‘Habakkuk further came and based them on one, as it is said: “But the righteous shall live by his faith”’ (Hab 2:4).” Neusner then continues his book with the following dialogue: “‘So,’ the master says, ‘is this what the sage, Jesus, had to say?’ “I: ‘Not exactly, but close.’ “He: ‘What did he leave out?’ “I: ‘Nothing.’ “He: ‘Then what did he add?’ “I: ‘Himself’” (pp. 107–8). This is the central point where the believing Jew Neusner experiences alarm at Jesus’ message, and this is the central reason why he does not wish to follow Jesus, but remains with the “eternal Israel”: the centrality of Jesus’ “I” in his message, which gives everything a new direction. At this point Neusner cites as evidence of this “addition” Jesus’ words to the rich young man: “If you would be perfect, go, sell all you have and come, follow me” (cf. Mt 19:21; Neusner, p. 109 [emphasis added]). Perfection, the state of being holy as God is holy (cf. Lev 19:2, 11:44), as demanded by the Torah, now consists in following Jesus. It is only with great respect and reverence that Neusner addresses this mysterious identification of Jesus and God that is found in the discourses of the Sermon on the Mount. Nonetheless, his analysis shows that this is the point where Jesus’ message diverges fundamentally from the faith of the “eternal Israel.” Neusner demonstrates this after investigating Jesus’ attitude toward three fundamental commandments: the fourth commandment (the commandment to love one’s parents), the third commandment (to keep holy the Sabbath), and, finally, the commandment to be holy as God is holy (which we touched upon just a moment ago). Neusner comes to the disturbing conclusion that Jesus is evidently trying to persuade him to cease following these three fundamental commandments of God and to adhere to Jesus instead. -Benedict XVI
2/9/201722 minutes, 54 seconds
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Episode 12: Episode 12: Epiphany 5A: Worship and Freedom

This week we reflect on the readings for this week in year A, which is the fifth Sunday in Epiphany: Isaiah 58:1-12, 1 Corinthian 2:1-16 and Matthew 5:13-20. Show Notes: Peace in the universe through peace with God, the union of above and below—that is how we can describe the essential intention of worship in all the world’s religions. But this basic definition of the attributes of worship is marked concretely by an awareness of man’s fall and estrangement. Of necessity it takes place as a struggle for atonement, forgiveness, reconciliation. The awareness of guilt weighs down on mankind. Worship is the attempt to be found at every stage of world history to bring back the world and one’s own life into right order.And yet an immense feeling of futility pervades everything. This is the tragic face of human history. How can man again connect the world with God? How is he supposed to make valid atonement? The only real gift man should give to God is himself. As his religious awareness becomes more highly developed, so his awareness that any gift but himself is too little, in fact absurd, becomes more intense. Historically, this sense of inadequacy has been the source of grotesque and horrific forms of cult. The most extreme example is human sacrifice. Superficially, it seems to give the deity what is best, and yet more deeply it has to be seen as the most horrific evasion of the gift of self, the most horrific and therefore the most to be rejected. Thus, as religion becomes more highly developed, this terrible attempt at atonement is more and more discarded, but it also becomes clearer that in all worship it is not the real gift but a mere replacement that is given. The sacrificial system of all the world's religions, including Israel's, rests on the idea of representation- but how can sacrificial animals or the fruits of harvest represent man, make expiation for him? This is not representation but replacement, and worship with replacements turns out to be a replacement for worship. Somehow the real thing is missing. -Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, The Spirit of The Liturgy The Messiah was expected to bring a renewed Torah—his Torah. Paul may be alluding to this in the Letter to the Galatians when he speaks of the “law of Christ” (Gal 6:2). His great, passionate defense of freedom from the Law culminates in the following statement in chapter 5: “For freedom Christ has set us free; stand fast therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery” (Gal 5:1). But when he goes on to repeat at 5:13 the claim that “you were called to freedom,” he adds, “Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love be servants of one another” (Gal 5:13). And now he explains what freedom is—namely, freedom in the service of good, freedom that allows itself to be led by the Spirit of God. It is precisely by letting oneself be led by God’s Spirit, moreover, that one becomes free from the Law. Immediately after this Paul details what the freedom of the Spirit actually consists in and what is incompatible with it. The “law of Christ” is freedom—that is the paradox of Paul’s message in the Letter to the Galatians. This freedom has content, then, it has direction, and it therefore contradicts what only apparently liberates man, but in truth makes him a slave. The “Torah of the Messiah” is totally new and different—but it is precisely by being such that it fulfills the Torah of Moses. The greater part of the Sermon on the Mount (cf. Mt 5:17–7:27) is devoted to the same topic... -Benedict XVI, Jesus of Nazareth: From the Baptism in the Jordan to the Transfiguration
2/1/201724 minutes, 1 second
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Episode 11: Episode 11: Sermons Preached On The Molehill

This week we reflect on the readings for this week in year A, which is the third Sunday in Epiphany: Micah 6:1-8; 1st Corinthians 1:18-31; and Matthew 5:1-12.
1/24/201723 minutes, 22 seconds
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Episode 10: Episode 10: Fishing For Epiphanies

This week we reflect on the readings for this week in year A, which is the third Sunday in Epiphany: Isaiah 9:1-4; 1st Corinthians 1:10-18 and Matthew 4:12-23. Show Notes: Is Christ divided? or, literally, ‘Has Christ been parcelled out?’ (13). Paul is asking the Corinthians, with all their division, ‘Do you suppose that there are fragments of Christ that can be distributed among different groups? If you have Christ, you have all of him. Jesus cannot be divided.’ We cannot have half a person, as though we said: ‘Please come in, but leave your legs outside.’ This, incidentally, throws light on such common phrases as ‘wanting more of Christ’. It cannot be: we should rather be allowing Christ to have more of us. We are the disintegrated ones whom Christ is gradually making whole, so that we become more like him—integrated and entire. The same argument applies to wanting more of the Holy Spirit. If he is personal, a Person, than we either have him living within us or we do not; again, our desire and prayer should be for the Holy Spirit to have more of us. -David Prior The phrase “from that time Jesus began” (v. 17) is followed by the infinitive “to preach.” The identical phrase appears again in 16:21, this time with the infinitive “to show” following. Now comes the content of the preaching or showing. Even though the phrase appears but twice in Matthew, it has the look of a formula introducing something of major importance. Some students of Matthew’s Gospel see it as an important indicator of Matthew’s view of the unfolding of Jesus’ ministry.In any case, “Jesus began to preach,” and the public work of Jesus is defined as preaching the nearness of the kingdom of God. In all too many cases today, the term “preaching” has associations with scolding, harping on moral platitudes, or dwelling on the obvious or the irrelevant. In the Scriptures, however, “to preach” (kēryssō) is not to deal in shopworn or secondhand goods, but to announce as a herald (kēryx) the news that is both gut-wrenching and glad beyond all expectation. -Andre Resner Neither religious philosophy nor existence can provide the criterion for the genuineness of Christianity. In philosophy, man discovers what is humanly knowable about the depths of being; in existence, man lives out what is humanly livable. But Christianity disappears the moment it allows itself to be dissolved into a transcendental precondition of human self-understanding in thinking or living, knowledge or deed. -Hans Urs von Balthasar “As we have taken the circle as a symbol of reason and madness, we may very well take the cross as a symbol at once of mystery and health. Buddhism is centripetal, but Christianity is centrifugal: it breaks out. For the circle is perfect and infinite in its nature; but it is fixed for ever in its size; it can never be larger or smaller. But the cross, though it has at its head a collision and a contradiction, can extend its four arms for ever without altering its shape. Because is has a paradox in its center it can grow without changing. The circle returns upon itself and is bound. The cross opens its arms to the four winds; it is a signpost for free travelers.” -G.K. Chesterton
1/19/201724 minutes, 52 seconds
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Episode 9: Episode 9: Epiphany 2, Year A

This week we reflect on the readings for this week in year A, which is the Baptism of the Lord: Isaiah 49:1-7, 1st Corinthians 1:1-9 and John 1:29-42. Show Notes: The paradox of an Israel sent to Israel is part of the powerful thrust the OT towards the NT, since not even the remnant of true Israelites can fulfill the boundless expectations of vs.1-13. We are driven to seek a more perfect embodiment of God's light, salvation (6), and covenant (8) in Christ at the head of his church, 'the Israel of God.' -NIV Commentary “It is an item in faith that we are children of God; there is plenty of experience in us against it. The faith that surmounts this evidence and is able to warm itself at the fire of God’s love, instead of having to steal love and self-acceptance from other sources, is actually the root of holiness.” -Richard Lovelace The Church is not exempt from this low an- thropology. It is sadly humorous to ponti cate about the virtues of the early church. e early church was a mess, lled with sinners. St. Paul, in his rst epistle to the Corinthians, points this out. Paul lets them know they are far from a pious community, that there is immorality amongst them that shocks even the pagans. This is very important to understand: anthropologically speaking, there is no difference between Christians and non-Christians. When the church forgets this truth, she gets herself into all sorts of trouble. Instead of making herself irrelevant, the church that has an N.W.A. anthropology has something to say and can speak to the culture at large. A church with a low an- thropology can see herself as part of the problem and, in humility, share the good news of God’s grace. A church with a low anthropology is not shocked by the sin of the world, but can minister to people—“Dope Man” and “Gang- sta” alike—free of judgement and assumption. -Jacob Smith, "Straight Outta Corinth" The Christology of John the Baptist: "A man is coming right after me": The historical Jesus (his true humanity) "Who actually ranks well above me": The royal Jesus (his true messianity) "Because he came way before me": The preexistent Jesus (his true divinity) -Dale Brune, The Gospel of John: A Commentary
1/10/201718 minutes, 54 seconds
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Episode 8: Episode 8: The Baptism of Jesus, There's an Epiphany There!

This week we reflect on the readings for this week in year A, which is the Baptism of the Lord: Isaiah 42:1-9, Acts 10:34-43 and Matthew 3:13-17. Show Notes: If, therefore, we treat Christianity under the common name of ‘redemption religion’ we must add that in it a conception of salvation of quite a distinctive sort emerges.  In all other doctrines of salvation, the belief in liberation is founded on the conviction of the ineradicable nobility of mankind, or on a metaphysical likeness of the soul with God.  The god-like in man must come into its own.  Jesus, however instead of this, sees a deep gulf between God and man.  According to Him salvation consists rather in this, That God of His free grace comes down to meet man.  It is the highest degree misleading that the infinite worth of the human soul is stressed as a fundamental doctrine of Christianity.  For this immediately obscures the distinctive significance of Jesus preaching.  With Jesus stress is laid rather on the fact that man has forfeited his worth but that nevertheless God accepts him.   -Karl Holle
1/4/201721 minutes, 33 seconds
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Episode 7: Episode 7: Christmas 1, The Feast Of The Holy Name

In this week's episode we discuss the texts for the first Sunday after Christmas: Numbers 6:22-27, Philippians 2:5-11 and Luke 2:15-21. Show Notes: As a strictly intellectual matter, I am very confident that God exists. In dark times, though — and this has been a dark year in many ways — I wonder if the Absolute relates to us in the way that my church teaches, if he will really wipe away every tear and make all things that we love new...This is the wager that Christmas offers us, year in and year out. It isn’t Pascal’s famous bet on God’s very existence; rather, it’s a bet on God’s love for us, a wager that all the varieties of religious experience, wonderful and terrifying and inscrutable, should be interpreted in the light of one specific history-altering experience: a divine incarnation, a baby crying beneath a pulsing star...The odds on that wager feel different year to year. They change with joy and suffering, tranquillity and crisis, sickness and health...But I haven’t found better ones. Merry Christmas. -Ross Douthat, http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/24/opinion/sunday/varieties-of-religious-experience.html?_r=0 One cannot simply read the Bible like other books. One must really be prepared to put questions to it.… The reason for this is that in the Bible God speaks to us. And one cannot just proceed to think about God under one’s own steam; instead one must ask God questions. Naturally one can read the Bible like any other book and so study it from the point of view of textual criticism, etc. There is absolutely nothing to be said against this. Only this way of going about things does not unlock the essence of the Bible but only what lies on its surface. Think of how we come to understand something said to us by a person we love not by dissecting it into bits but by simply accepting it as the kind of word it is, so that for days it echoes within us simply as the word of that particular person whom we love; the more we, like Mary, “ponder it in the heart,” the more the person who has said it to us becomes accessible to us in that word. That is just how we should treat the word of the Bible.… Every other place outside the Bible has become too uncertain for me; I am afraid that I will encounter only a divine double [einen göttlichen Doppelgänger] of my own self in it. Is it possible, then, for you to comprehend that I would rather make a sacrificium intellectus by confessing that I do not yet understand this or that passage in Scripture, with the certainty that it too will one day reveal itself as God’s own word. I would rather do that than on the basis of my own opinion declare: this is what is divine in it and that is what is human!? (I make the sacrificium intellectus in just these matters and only in these matters, that is, with the true God in view! Who after all would not make a sacrificium intellectus anywhere in this respect?) I also want to say to you now by way of an entirely personal note, that since I learned to read the Bible in this way—which is by no means such a long time ago—it has become more wonderful to me every day.… In a few days it will be Easter … Resurrection. That is certainly not an idea that is in itself reasonable, an eternal truth. I take it to be what the Bible also takes it to be, of course: resurrection from real death (not from sleep) to real life, from being far away from God [der Gottesferne] and from godlessness [der Gottlosigkeit] to new life with Christ in God. God has spoken—and we know this through the Bible—See, I am making all things new. God made that come true at Easter. -Dietrich Bonhoeffer
12/27/201625 minutes, 54 seconds
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Episode 6: Episode 6: Christmas Day!

We give our take on the readings for Christmas day, year A. We're talking Isaiah 52:7-10, Hebrews 1:1-6, and John 1:1-14. Despite the New Testament’s assertion that the coming of Jesus was the fulfillment of ancient Israel’s religious hopes for the future, religious Jews find the Christian celebration of Christmas based on a belief that stands in direct opposition to the most fundamental of Jewish tenets: the oneness of God (see Deut. 6:4). Still, the church continues to find in the Old Testament words of spirit and life. Today’s lesson from Isaiah reaffirms the church’s belief that judgment is not God’s final word. The good news is that God’s movement into our lives is to accomplish salvation (v. 7). The experience of ancient Israel exemplifies that “good news.” The judgment that Israel experienced as a consequence of its infidelity was not God’s final word, for God comes to comfort Judah and redeem Jerusalem (v. 9). The coming of Jesus, then, needs to be understood against the backdrop of ancient Israel’s religious experience. It is the decisive movement of God in the world, insuring that the world will become what God always intended it to be. God will not allow our selfishness and sin to frustrate the divine will for creation. In Jesus, God has become part of creation to transform it from within. God’s self-communication, begun in creation and continued through the experience of ancient Israel, comes to perfection in the incarnation. In Jesus, God has become a human being. That is the “good news” that the church proclaims today. -Leslie J. Hoppe Let’s think first about the song. During a discussion in his excellent book on preaching Tim Keller uses “Let It Go” as a prime example of the the way contemporary culture “enthrones our passions”: The song is sung by a character determined no longer to “be the good girl” that her family and society had wanted her to be. Instead she would “let go” and express what she had been holding back inside. There is “no right or wrong, no rules” for her. This is a good example of the expressive individualism [sociologist Robert] Bellah described. Identity is not realized, as in traditional societies, by sublimating our individual desires for the good of our family and people. Instead we become ourselves only by asserting our individual desires against society, by expressing our feelings and fulfilling our dreams regardless of what anyone says. (134) But we must also think about the movie as a whole, and not merely the song in isolation. As Trevin Wax of The Gospel Coalition has pointed out, the heroine of the movie, Anna, rescues her sister from the selfish, solo life she gives into by Letting It Go. (Greg Forster has made a similar argument.) The movie’s story ends up undermining and then jettisoning the “expressive individualism of the sovereign self” Elsa tries on for size while striding up the North Mountain. I agree. Anna’s love for her elder sister, despite years of apparent coldness from her, is one of the more beautiful redemptive loves I’ve ever seen in film. And in the end, Elsa submits again to “right and wrong,” even “rules,” by taking up her queenly responsibilities in the land of Arendelle. This the movie portrays as good, not as a constriction of her individual rights. I love the love of Anna for Elsa. Romantic love isn’t the only true love, and it isn’t even always true. I want my little girl to know this. It’s the major reason I let my kids watch Frozen. So what does the song mean? Does it undermine or does it support the expressive individualism of the sovereign self? Was Tim Keller interpreting and applying “Let it Go” according to the authorial intentions of the now-famous duo who wrote it? -Mark Ward, full article at https://blog.logos.com/2016/12/pop-music-can-teach-us-interpreting-scripture/ The Gospel according to John was written out of the thrill of actual contact with its leading figure, and one senses the tremors of this contact on every subsequent page. John's phrase "full of grace and truth" is exactly synonymous with ancient Israel's frequent celebration of the Lord God's "steadfast love and faithfulness" (hesed we'emet). With the word "grace" one thinks of the wide horizontal beam of the cross and of the wide-outstretched world-embracing arms of the all-merciful, all-compassionate God, the major longing of the human heart. With the word "truth" one thinks of the vertical beam of the Cross going down deep and up high to suggest the power of straight, real, honest truth, the major longing of the human mind. This truth is powerful enough to support the wide horizontal be a of God's Grace that stretches round the world. -Dale Bruner, The Gospel of John, A Commentary
12/24/201623 minutes, 26 seconds
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Episode 5: Episode 5: Christmas Eve

In our fifth episode we deal with the Lectionary texts for Christmas Eve, Year A: Isaiah 9:2-7, Titus 2:11-14, Luke 2:1-20. Show Notes: The first thing to learn in this prophecy of Isaiah is that a child is born to you and is your child…. We must accentuate the word “us” and write it large. That is, when you hear, “A child has been born to us, make the two letters US as large as heaven and earth and say, “The child is born, it is true; but for whom is he born: Unto US, for US he is born, says the prophet.” Luther continues, “God allowed this child to be born for the sake of condemned and lost sinners. Therefore, hold out your hand, lay hold of it, and say, “True, I am godless and wicked, there is nothing good in me, nothing but sin, vice, depravity, death, devil, and hellfire; against all this, however, I set this child whom the Virgin Mary has in her lap and at her breast. For since he is born for me, that he might be my treasure, I accept this child and set him over against everything I do not have.” Luther concludes, “For what can the devil with all his evil tricks do to the Christian who lays hold on these words in all seriousness and firm faith? For though such a Christian be tempted by the devil, he can easily oppose him and say, 'Devil, are you listening? Do you know that a child has been born? Yes, indeed, do you know that he was born for us, that is, for me?' That’s when the devil has to back off. -Martin Luther Only Christ can make our inward heart fit to see God. -St. John of Chrysostom But the most obvious fact about praise—whether of God or anything—strangely escaped me. […] I had never noticed that all enjoyment spontaneously overflows into praise unless (sometimes even if) shyness or the fear of boring others is deliberately brought in to check it.” In other words, whenever you enjoy something, you have to praise it. See? The world rings with praise—lovers praising their mistresses, readers their favorite poet, walkers praising the countryside … praise of weather, wines, dishes, actors, motors, horses, colleges … children, flowers, mountains … I had not noticed how the humblest, and at the same time most balanced and capacious, minds, praised most, while the cranks, misfits and malcontents praised least. The good critics found something to praise in many imperfect works; the bad ones continually narrowed the list of books we might be allowed to read. The healthy and unaffected man … could praise a very modest meal: the dyspeptic and the snob found fault with all.… praise almost seems to be inner health made audible. -C.S. Lewis, Reflections On The Psalms ‘In those days,’ says Luke, ‘there went out a decree from the Emperor Augustus that all the world should be registered.’ These words have become so well known, through constant repetition in carol services, that we may perhaps be forgiven for not stopping to reflect on what Luke is trying to tell us, here and throughout his work. In one short paragraph (2:1–14) he moves from the great Emperor in Rome to the new King who was to rule the world. There is no question, for Luke, as to which one makes the angels sing. As we look at this story, which we know so well and yet so little, we may catch a glimpse of what we might mean when we say: Thine is the Kingdom, the Power and the Glory. By the time Jesus was born, Augustus had already been monarch of all he surveyed for a quarter of a century. He was the King of kings, ruling a territory that stretched from Gibralter to Jerusalem, from Britain to the Black Sea. He had done what no-one had done for two hundred years before him had achieved: he had brought peace to the whole wider Roman world. Peace, I grant you, at a price: a price paid, in cash, by subjects in far-off lands, and, in less obvious ways, by those who mourned the old Republic. Power was now concentrated in the hands of one man, whose kingdom stretched from shore to shore. And, as Arnaldo Momigliano, one of the greatest of ancient historians, once put it, ‘[Augustus] gave peace, as long as it was consistent with the interests of the Empire and the myth of his own glory’. There you have it in a nutshell: the whole ambiguous structure of human empire, a kingdom of absolute power, bringing glory to the man at the top, and peace to those on whom his favour rested. Yes, says Luke, and watch what happens now. This man, this king, this absolute monarch, lifts his little finger in Rome, and fifteen hundred miles away in an obscure province a young couple undertake a hazardous journey, resulting in the birth of a child in a little town that just happens to be the one mentioned in the ancient Hebrew prophecy about the coming of the Messiah. And it is at this birth that the angels sing of glory and peace. Which is the reality, and which the parody? -N.T. Wright, The Lord and His Prayer ...prayerful reflection, reading Old and New Testaments in the light of one another, filled this lacuna at a very early stage by pointing to Is 1: 3: “The ox knows its owner, and the ass its master’s crib; but Israel does not know, my people does not understand.” Peter Stuhlmacher points out that the Greek version of Hab 3: 2 may well have contributed here: “In the midst of two living creatures you will be recognized … when the time has come, you will appear” (cf. Die Geburt des Immanuel, p. 52). The two living creatures would appear to refer to the two cherubs on the mercy-seat of the Ark of the Covenant (cf. Ex 25: 18– 20), who both reveal and conceal the mysterious presence of God. So the manger has in some sense become the Ark of the Covenant, in which God is mysteriously hidden among men, and before which the time has come for “ox and ass”— humanity made up of Jews and Gentiles— to acknowledge God. Through this remarkable combination of Is 1: 3, Hab 3: 2, Ex 25: 18– 20 and the manger, the two animals now appear as an image of a hitherto blind humanity which now, before the child, before God’s humble self-manifestation in the stable, has learned to recognize him, and in the lowliness of his birth receives the revelation that now teaches all people to see. Christian iconography adopted this motif at an early stage. No representation of the crib is complete without the ox and the ass. After this brief digression, let us return to the text of the Gospel. “Mary gave birth to her first-born son,” we read in Lk 2: 7. What does this mean? -Pope Benedict XVI, Jesus of Nazareth: The Infancy Narratives
12/20/201625 minutes, 19 seconds
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Episode 4: Episode 4: Advent 4 (A)

In our fourth episode we deal with the Lectionary texts for the Fourth Sunday of Advent, Year A: Isaiah 7:10-16, Romans 1:1-7 and Matthew 1:18-25. They're texts that in different ways talk about the significance of signs. King Ahaz of Judah is in a panic. Israel and Aram have allied to resist Assyria's expansion, and they are pressuring Ahaz to join the alliance. If he refuses, they will overthrow Judah and replace him with another king. The result may be the end of the Davidic line. Isaiah assures Ahaz that he doesn't have to worry about Israel and Aram (Isaiah 7). The Lord will take care of them, and, besides, Assyria poses a greater danger. But that’s not the heart of the prophet's message. Like Ahaz, Isaiah knows that the house of David is threatened. He knows that the land of Judah is afflicted. But the threat doesn’t come from Aram and Israel, and it doesn’t fundamentally come from Assyria either. The main threat to the house of David is the king who sits on David’s throne. The one who is really afflicting the land is not Aram or Israel or Assyria, but Ahaz, the Davidic king (7:16). Ahaz’s is not a political failure. It’s not that he hasn’t played the political game cleverly enough. His failure is a failure of faith. -Peter Leithart, https://www.firstthings.com/blogs/leithart/2016/12/faith-in-a-time-of-crisis According to Gowan (1998), the prophets to ancient Israel did not preach a legalistic message of moral reformation but an evangelistic message of faith in the God who raises the dead. From the first days of the human race in Eden, the curse threatened against sin is "dying you shall die," and the same curse hangs over Israel after Yahweh cut covenant with it at Sinai. The message of the prophets is not, "Israel has sinned: therefore, Israel needs to get its act together or it will die." The message is, "Israel has sinned; therefor Israel must die, and its only hope is to entrust itself to a God who will give it new life on the far side of death." Or even, "Israel has sinned; Israel is already dead. Cling to the God who raises the dead." This is precisely the prophetic message of 1-2 Kings, which systematically dismantles Israel's confidence in everything but the omnipotent mercy and patience of God. -Peter Leithart, 1 & 2 Kings, 18. Who is “Emmanuel?” Hardly a historical figure of the period. Perhaps a traditional name, or one selected by the prophet, to describe the expected Redemptor-King of the last day, to whom a kind of pre-existence is here ascribed. Perhaps the personification of what the remnant-Israel of Judah understood its God to be, and therefore itself, or according to the prophets ought to have done so. Perhaps both? Certainly a special key to the continual mystery of the history of this people in days of prosperity and in days of adversity, under the hand of God in blessing and in cursing. “God with us” is true when the people is at rest. It is also true when the enemy invades and devastates its land. It is always true, in spite of and in the most irresistible movements of history. It is so because and to the extent that in all these things there is revealed the gracious action of God to His people. No matter who or what is concretely envisaged in these passages, they obviously mean this: Emmanuel is the content of the recognition in which the God of Israel reveals Himself in all His acts and dispositions; He is the God who does not work and act without His people, but who is with His people as their God and therefore as their hope. We are reminded of this remarkable name in Mt. 1:21f. The reference here is to a single, final and exclusive act of the God of Israel as the goal and recapitulation of all His acts. But this act, the birth and naming of Jesus, is similar to the events in the days of King Ahaz in that once again we have come to a change in the relationship between God and His people. As the Evangelist sees it, it is this time the great change compared with which what took place before was only from his point of view a prelude. And now it is the equally unexpected change from perdition to salvation, from an age-long judgment to a new and final blessing. And the Emmanuel-sign has it in common with the name of Jesus that the latter, too, although this time in the reverse direction, is a sign for both: a sign “for the fall and rising again of many in Israel” (Lk. 2:34), a sign both of the deepest extremity imposed by God (as in Is. 8:6f.) and also of the uttermost preservation and salvation ordained by God (as in Is. 8:9f.). Over and in both it is Emmanuel, “God with us,” and now therefore (ἵνα πληρωθῇ τὸ ῥηθὲν ὑπὸ κυρίου διὰ τοῦ προφήτου λέγοντος*) Jesus, Jehoshuah, “God helps.” -Karl Barth., Bromiley, G. W., & Torrance, T. F. (2004). Church dogmatics: The doctrine of God, Part 1 (Vol. 4, pp. 5–6). London; New York: T&T Clark. ‘Born of the Virgin Mary.’ Once again and now from the human standpoint the male is excluded here. The male has nothing to do with this birth. What is involved here is, if you like, a divine act of judgment. To what is to begin here man is to contribute nothing by his action and initiative. Man is not simply excluded, for the Virgin is there. But the male, as the specific agent of human action and history, with his responsibility for directing the human species, must now retire into the background, as the powerless figure of Joseph. That is the Christian reply to the question of woman: here the woman stands absolutely in the foreground, moreover the virgo, the Virgin Mary. God did not choose man in his pride and in his defiance, but man in his weakness and humility, not man in his historical rôle, but man in the weakness of his nature as represented by the woman, the human creature who can confront God only with the words, ‘Behold, the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according as Thou hast said’. Such is human co-operation in this matter, that and only that! We must not think of making a merit of this handmaid existence, nor attempt once more to ascribe a potency to the creature. But God has regarded man in his weakness and in his humility, and Mary has expressed what creation alone can express in this encounter. That Mary does so and that thereby the creature says ‘Yes’ to God, is a part of the great acceptance which comes to man from God. -Karl Barth, (2011-11-09). Dogmatics in Outline (SCM Classics) (p. 99). This is the most necessary conversion for those who have already followed Christ and have lived at his service in the Church. An altogether special conversion, which does not consist in abandoning what is evil, but, in a certain sense, in abandoning what is good! Namely, in detaching oneself from everything that one has done… This emptying of one’s hands and pockets of every pretension, in a spirit of poverty and humility, is the best way to prepare for Christmas. We are reminded of it by a delightful Christmas legend that I would like to mention again. It narrates that among the shepherds that ran on Christmas night to adore the Child there was one who was so poor that he had nothing to offer and was very ashamed. Reaching the grotto, all competed to offer their gifts. Mary did not know what to do to receive them all, having to hold the Child in her arms. Then, seeing the shepherd with his hands free, she entrusted Jesus to him. To have empty hands was his fortune and, on another plane, will also be ours. Father Raniero Cantalamessa
12/13/201621 minutes, 53 seconds
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Episode 3: Episode 3: Advent 3 (A)

In our third episode we deal with the Lectionary texts for the Third Sunday of Advent, Year A: Isaiah 11:1-10, Romans 15:4-13 and Matthew 3:1-12. We consider what it means to look to these texts for real words of grace and hope, and what the nature of true joy really is. Show Notes: With the words, “This text shouldn’t be here,” my colleague Barbara Lundblad begins a thoughtful presentation on Isaiah 35. After all, as she points out, it’s not just that this text doesn’t address anyone by name. It’s also that it almost immediately follows a poem that’s full of images of creational disaster: “Edom’s streams will be turned into pitch, her dust into burning sulfur, her land will become blazing pitch … Thorns will overrun her citadels, nettles and brambles her strongholds” (Isaiah 34:9, 13). Into that promise of environmental devastation, Isaiah says, “The desert and the parched land will be glad; the wilderness will rejoice and blossom. Like the crocus, it will burst into bloom; it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy” (Isaiah 35:1-2a). This text shouldn’t be here...Lundblad notes, “Isaiah dares to speak a word out of place. A word that refuses to wait until things improved.” Walter Brueggemann says something similar when he points out, “Israel’s doxologies are characteristically against the data.” Doug Bratt, See more at: http://cep.calvinseminary.edu/sermon-starters/advent-3a/?type=the_lectionary_gospel#sthash.WEF8QYaM.dpuf Patience with others is Love, Patience with self is Hope, Patience with God is Faith. —Adel Bestavros Hardly anything points toward God and calls as urgently for God as the experience of his absence... Yes, patience is what I consider to be the main difference between faith and atheism...What atheism, religious fundamentalism, and the enthusiasm of a too-facile faith have in common is how quickly they can ride roughshod over the mystery we call God – and that is why I find all three approaches equally unacceptable... One must never consider mystery “over and done with.” Mystery, unlike a mere dilemma, cannot be overcome; one must wait patiently at its threshold and persevere in it – must carry it in one’s heart … and allow it to mature there and lead one in turn to maturity... If the signs of God’s presence lay within easy reach on the surface of the world as some religious zealots like to think, there would be no need for real faith. But I’m convinced that maturing in one’s faith also entails accepting enduring moments – and sometimes even lengthy periods – when God seems remote or remains concealed. What is obvious and demonstrable doesn’t require faith. We don’t need faith when confronted with unshakable certainties accessible to our powers of reason, imagination, or sensory experience. We need faith precisely at those twilight moments when our lives and the world are full of uncertainty, during the cold night of God’s silence. And its function is not to allay our thirst for certainty and safety, but to teach us to live with mystery. Faith and hope are expressions of our patience at just such moments – and so is love. -Tomas Halick, Patience With God In contrast to the overblown rhetoric of so many Christian apologists – with their drastic naivety about the ambivalence of the natural world and the intractable difficulties of believing – Halík's account strikes me as a sensitive and realistic articulation of the difference faith makes. The best thing about his book – again, in contrast to the usual apologetics – is that it's actually a Christian response to atheism. Surely anything a Christian says to an atheist ought to arise not from an invincible commitment to being right, but from an understanding of the kindness of God, an awareness that there is room in God's family even for those who doubt – those for whom the word "God" cannot easily be deciphered from the dark hieroglyphics of the world. -Ben Meyers, commenting on Halik's "Patience With God" The entire Bible can be seen, in fact, as a story of betrayal, beginning with Adam and proceeding through the history of the Israelites, culminating in the cross. In an astonishing reversal the Romans’ cruelest execution device became the ubiquitous Christian symbol. “And I, when I am lifted up from when I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw all people to myself,” Jesus had predicted. John adds by way of explanation, “He said this to show the kind of death he was going to die.” At the cross, hiddenness, ambiguity and strange beauty converge. Every one of Jesus’ followers, from the first disciples down through history to the present day, knows the feeling of betrayal. Sharp-edged gossip, the stab of envy, that colleague we humiliated, the racist comment that drew a laugh, a sudden and inexplicable cruelty, apologies to our children deserved but never made, a furtive fantasy, a stolen kiss, callousness toward another’s misery, an addiction to what demeans or even destroys— in ways small and large we too step on the fumi-e. Our only hope is the forgiving gaze of the betrayed Savior, the still point of Endo’s novel. -Philip Yancey, from the forward to Makoto Fujimura's Silence and Beauty: Hidden Faith Born of Suffering (Kindle Locations 240-242). InterVarsity Press. Kindle Edition.
12/6/201625 minutes, 33 seconds
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Episode 2: Episode 2: Advent 2

In our second episode we deal with the Lectionary texts for the Second Sunday of Advent, Year A: Isaiah 11:1-10, Romans 15:4-13 and Matthew 3:1-12. We consider what it means to look to these texts for real words of grace and hope.
11/28/201623 minutes, 42 seconds
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Episode 1: Episode 1: Advent 1

In this debut episode of "Same Old Song" we deal with the texts for the beginning of a New Year for the Christian Church. It's Advent, year A, so Jacob Smith and Scott Jones attempt to bring their A game with brevity (with a capital "B") as they unpack the readings preachers all across the world will be dealing with this coming Sunday.
11/25/201622 minutes, 14 seconds