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Lectionary Guide

Lectionary for January 27, 2019

Third Sunday after the Epiphany, Series C, ESV

Nehemiah 8:1-3, 5-6, 8-10, Ezra Reads the Law

Nehemiah was a governor of Judah who had risen to authority in the Persian Empire. After decades in exile, Nehemiah and other people of Judah returned to their homeland with a new passion against breaches of the Law, so as to not again fall into idolatry which had led to their initial exile by the Babylonians. This section of scripture occurs after the walls of Jerusalem have been rebuilt during a period of covenant renewal and revival.

In verse 1, the Water Gate refers to the entrance in the east wall that probably led to Gihon spring. Who was Ezra? Ezra 7:6

So Ezra the priest brought the Law before the assembly , verse 2. There was a precedence for this action. Deuteronomy 31:10-13

What is meant in verse 5 by for he was above all people? Nehemiah 8:4a

The people were told in verse 9, This day is holy to the Lord your God. Why? Leviticus 23:23-25; Numbers 29:1-6 all the people wept, evidently, what the people heard Ezra read made them realize that they had cause to grieve in repentance for their sins, as King Josiah did under similar circumstances. 2 Kings 22:11, 19

Psalm 19, The Law of the Lord is Perfect

Day to day pours out speech , verse 2, each new day effectively bears witness to God's creative power and providential care.

In verses 4-6, the David gets specific about how the heavens declare God's glory. The sun daily runs its course through the firmament, giving life and heat to the entire world. In contrast to the surrounding pagan religions, which worshiped the sun as a deity, the Israelite faith understood it to be a creation that fulfilled its Creator's bidding.

What is meant in verse 7 by reviving the soul? Psalm 23:3; 2 Timothy 3:16 What testimony is being referenced? Exodus 25:16; Psalm 78:5 making wise the simple, see Matthew 11:16-26 and 1 Corinthians 1:26-31.

Genesis 20:1-7 demonstrates how the Lord keptback your servant, verse 13, from sin. presumptuous sins, are those sins an individual commits by failing to observe the limits of what God permits or has deemed appropriate. Numbers 15:27-31 describes the Old Testament punishment for such sins. Romans 6:9-14 expands on let them not have dominion over me!

1 Corinthians 12:12-31a, One Body with Many Members

we were all baptized into one body , verse 13. What body is that? Ephesians 2:18-20 all were made to drink of one Spirit, how is this related to Jesus? John 7:37-39

God arranged the members , verse 18. arranged is the same verb used as in verse 28, appointed.

What is the purpose of being individually members , verse 27, of the body of Christ? Ephesians 4:8, 11-12

Acts 20:35 expands the understanding of the actionhelping found in verse 28. Romans 12:8 expands on administrating.

What are the higher gifts, verse 31? 1 Corinthians 14:1, 39

Luke 4:16-30, Jesus Rejected at Nazareth

scroll of the prophet Isaiah , verse 17, was probably a selection from a prescribed lectionary. The reading appointed for this day, from Isaiah 61:1-2, has an unmistakably messianic character.

What was the good news, verse 18, proclaimed to the poor? Luke 6:20 What is meant by recovering of sight to the blind? Isaiah 42:6-7; John 9:39-41; Acts 26:13-18

In verse 23, Jesus foreshadows his death at the hands of the Jews when he says, you will quote to me this proverb, "Physician, heal yourself" . Luke 23:39; Matthew 27:39-42 What we have heard you did at Capernaum, do here in your hometown as well. What happened in Capernaum? Mark 2:1-12; John 4:46-53 Did Jesus do mighty works in Nazareth? Matthew 13:54-58; Mark 6:1-6

Elijah was sent to … the land of Sidon

, verse 26. Sidon was in Phoenicia, north of Israel. 2 Kings 5:1-14 tells the account of Naaman the Syrian, being cleansed from leprosy. God's grace was extended to both the widow and Naaman through Elijah. What did the widow and Naaman have in common? Jesus' words in verses 24-27 outraged his audience because they subtly made a case for including the Gentiles in the Messiah's salvation.