GodSpeak for the Week of September 30
This week (and, for the next few) we return to the Lectionary, with a special focus on words from the book of Numbers about being careful what you wish for…
Day 1…Read Numbers 11:4-6
- Consider this – the reading refers to the “rabble” that was within God’s people.
- In Hebrew, this word means a “mixed crowd” which has been “scraped together of all kinds.” In more current language, the writer of Numbers is trying to get us to see that those who were inciting complaints against God and Moses were the “bottom of the barrel”-kind of people.
- Consider this – we’re led to see that this “rabble” starts the complaining, but that the rest of God’s people soon join in.
- Answer this – why are just a FEW “rabble-rousers” – here and elsewhere in history – able to generate support from the broader population?
- What do they say that’s compelling?
- What methods do they use to be compelling?
Day 2…Read Numbers 11:4-6 (again)
- Consider this – the rabble’s reference to the cucumbers, melons, leeks, onions and garlic they used to enjoy with their fish in Egypt is a reference to the SPICE and ZEST their food used to have.
- Here – in the wilderness – not only do they lack MEAT, but what food God HAS provided is BLAND!
- Answer this – but, in all of their complaining – what have they MOST EGREGIOUSLY overlooked?
- Hint – look at the words which come just before: “- also the cucumbers, melons…”
Day 3…Read 1 Corinthians 7:23
- Consider this – in the broader context, here, Paul is talking about being content with one’s life situation while keeping God’s Law at the same time.
- Answer this – how do Paul’s words in this verse speak to the peoples’ complaints and life situation in the Numbers passage?
- How are Paul’s words, here, an important reminder for us to remain mindful of constantly?
Day 4…Read James 5:13-20
- Answer this – what do you think James means by a “righteous” person?
- What makes a person righteous?
- Answer this – therefore, why is the prayer of a righteous person both POWERFUL and EFFECTIVE?
Day 5…Read James 5:13-20 (again)
- Consider this – James calls for folks to “bring back” those who have “wandered from the truth.”
- Answer this – how are we to “turn” sinners from the error of their ways?
- What are we supposed to do to make this happen?
- Hint – read the verses before James’ words in vv. 19-20.
Day 6…Read Mark 9:38-50
- Answer this – Jesus repeatedly uses a three-word phrase to illustrate the SOURCE of power to cast out demons, give a cup of water (i.e., refreshment), etc. What is that three-word phrase?
- Answer this – if someone uses this three-word phrase…even though they’re not “one of us” (as the disciples say)…what does that IMPLY about their thinking and beliefs?
- Consider this – again, the disciples note that the person they’re referring to was not “one of us.” Yet, the person has done a miracle.
- Answer this – how was the person who was not “one of the disciples” able to perform a miracle?
- What’s the source
- What does that imply about that person?