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19th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A

This site provides something different: many sites and books provide a brief summary of the reading – so that people read out or have in their pew sheet an outline of what they are about to hear. They are told beforehand what to expect. Does this not limit what they hear the Spirit address them? This site provides something different – often one cannot appreciate what is being read because there is no context provided. This site provides the context, the frame of the reading about to be heard. It could be used as an introduction, printed on a pew sheet (acknowledged, of course), or adapted in other ways.

Genesis 37:1-4, 12-28

Long sleeves would be an indication of not needing (not being able!) to do work. An alternative translation has been “of many colours”. The story, once again, conflates two traditions – children acting it out would notice the change from Ishmaelites to Midianites as well as a shift in who is the good brother.

1 Kings 19:9-18

The larger frame of this story is the Exodus. The author seeks to have us compare Elijah and Moses. “Horeb” is the title for the mountain given by the Elohistic and Deuteronomistic tradition. The Yahwistic and Priestly tradition call it “Sinai”. Some translations of the bible (eg. CEV) even want to correct the sacred author and alter it to Sinai! The composers of the lectionary are in danger by neglecting the frame of 1 Kings 19:3-4 (where he is despairing) of presenting Elijah as having a trusting intimate relationship with God. The RC version(19:9a, 11-13a) even excludes God’s rebuke (19:13b).

Romans 10:5-15

The “New Perspective on Paul” is a paradigm shift within New Testament scholarship since E. P. Sanders’ Paul and Palestinian Judaism (1977). There had been an unfair caricaturing of Palestinian Judaism as legalistic works focused. James Dunn and NT Wright have built on this to move Romans 9-11 from the backwaters of biblical studies and this new context no longer supports an oversimplification of a Catholic-Protestant divide into works contrasted with faith. The RC and RCL carve up Romans slightly differently – RC churches today are reading RCL’s last week’s selection.

Matthew 14:22-33

Jesus Boat

In 1986 two fishermen brothers, Moshe and Yuval Lufanan discovered an ancient fishing boat from the 1st century AD/CE on the north-west shore of the Sea of Galilee in Israel. The remains of the boat are 8.27 meters long and 2.3 meters wide and 1.3 meters high. Although there is no evidence this boat is connected to Jesus, it has the nickname the “Jesus Boat” as it is an example of the sort of boat used for transport and fishing on the lake at the time.

Today’s readings online (link off this site)