Barry Woodbridge

Proper 21

September 30, 2001
See Also: 
Reading 1: 
Jeremiah 32:1-3a, 6-15
Reading 2: 
Psalm 91:1-6, 14-16
Reading 3: 
1 Timothy 6:6-19
Reading 4: 
Luke 16:19-31
By Barry A. Woodbridge

The Hebrew Bible lesson from Jeremiah 32 will probably cause the most consternation and confusion for the congregation, as well as require additional work for the exegete and preacher. It will therefore probably not be the subject of too many sermons. Just for that reason, the process-informed preacher should be particularly attentive to its proposals.

Proper 20

September 23, 2001
See Also: 
Reading 1: 
Jeremiah 8:18-9:1
Reading 2: 
Psalm 79:1-9
Reading 3: 
1 Timothy 2:1-7
Reading 4: 
Luke 16:1-13
By Barry A. Woodbridge

We reflect on these lectionary readings and prepare our sermons during the second week following the national tragedy of terrorist attacks in New York City and Washington D.C. on September 11, 2001.

The Hebrew Bible lessons from Jeremiah and the Psalter speak of the same national lament most of us feel while still numbed and processing the grief of our nation’s tragedy.

3rd Sunday of Easter

April 29, 2001
See Also: 
Reading 2: 
Psalm 30
Reading 3: 
Acts 9:1-6 (7-20) and Revelation 5:11-14
Reading 4: 
John 21:1-19
By Barry A. Woodbridge

Last week we took the approach that a new process-informed commentary on Revelation by Dr. Ronald L. Farmer would re-open the issue of preaching the Eastertide series of New Testament lections from the book of Revelation. This week, after reviewing each of the other three lections (Eastertide always substitutes a reading from Acts for the Hebrew bible lection), we will continue exploring Ron’s processive views of the message of Revelation.

2nd Sunday of Easter

April 22, 2001
See Also: 
Reading 2: 
Psalm 118:14-29 or Psalm 150
Reading 3: 
Acts 5:27-32 and Revelation 1:4-8
Reading 4: 
John 20:19-31
By Barry A. Woodbridge

For the second through the sixth Sundays in Easter, or the complete cycle of Eastertide, the epistle lesson is taken from the book of Revelation. One of our Process and Faith board members and an active member of the process hermeneutics working group is New Testament scholar, Dr. Ronald L. Farmer.

Easter Sunday

April 15, 2001
See Also: 

Lenten Candle Liturgy
Lenten Benedictions/Commissioning/Blessings

Preaching Lent/Easter I
Preaching Lent/Easter II
Preaching Lent/Easter III

John Cobb on atonement
John Cobb on redemption
John Cobb on Jesus
Biblical Preaching on the Death of Jesus (Cobb)

Reading 2: 
Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24
Reading 3: 
1 Corinthians 15:19-26 or Acts 10:34-43
Reading 4: 
John 20:1-18
By Barry A. Woodbridge

Note: In honor of William A. Beardslee, this week’s lectionary notes emphasize and suggest preaching on the epistle lesson for Easter Sunday, using Will’s commentary on 1 Cor. 15 in his First Corinthians A Commentary for Today (St. Louis: Chalice Press, 1994), pp. 143-152, as a basis for a process approach to the Paul’s proclamation of the resurrection.

Palm Sunday/Passion Sunday

April 8, 2001
See Also: 
Reading 2: 
Psalm 118:1-2, 19-29
Reading 4: 
Luke 19:28-40
By Barry A. Woodbridge

The Lucan account of the triumphal entry structurally depends upon the preceding parable of pounds involving the greedy and vengeful king. The king has gone away "to get royal power for himself and then return" (Luke 19:12). He returns "having received royal power" (v.15), but the citizens hated him and sent a mob delegation after him (v.14). Thus, the parable anticipates the plot of the triumphal entry.

This lesson is therefore about power and how people respond to it.

5th Sunday in Lent

April 1, 2001
See Also: 

Lenten Candle Liturgy

Preaching Lent/Easter I
Preaching Lent/Easter II
Preaching Lent/Easter III

John Cobb on atonement
John Cobb on redemption
John Cobb on Jesus
Biblical Preaching on the Death of Jesus (Cobb)

Reading 1: 
Isaiah 43:16-21
Reading 2: 
Psalm 126
Reading 3: 
Philippians 3:4b-14
Reading 4: 
John 12:1-8
By Barry A. Woodbridge

The Lenten journey from desert temptation, to Jerusalem, to the Cross is propelled by a dramatic confluence of images between the lections in the Hebrew Bible and the New Testament this week. This fifth Sunday in Lent brings an unusually opportune time to read and preach inclusively from all four texts and not just the familiar story line of the gospel text.

7th Sunday after Epiphany

February 23, 2003
See Also: 
Reading 1: 
Isaiah 43:18-25
Reading 2: 
Psalm 41
Reading 3: 
2 Corinthians 1:18-22
Reading 4: 
Mark 2:1-12
By Barry A. Woodbridge

The gospel lection continues the theme of epiphany through God's power manifest in healing for the third week - this week the healing of the paralytic lowered through the roof. Mark uses the dramatic structure to introduce debate over Jesus' authority to forgive sins.

5th Sunday after Epiphany

February 9, 2003
See Also: 
Reading 1: 
Isaiah 40:21-31
Reading 2: 
Psalm 147:1-11, 20c
Reading 3: 
1 Corinthians 9:16-23
Reading 4: 
Mark 1:29-39
By Barry A. Woodbridge

Continuing in the season of Epiphany, we may begin our thematic study of this week's texts by asking ourselves the Epiphany question, "How do these texts propose a manifestation of the divine?" In Epiphany, we have already celebrated manifestations of a star, the Lord's baptism, the Lord's first miracle, the calling of the disciples. These are the great "mysteries of Epiphany."

Transfiguration Sunday

February 10, 2002
See Also: 
Reading 1: 
Exodus 24: 12-18
Reading 2: 
Psalm 2 or 99
Reading 3: 
2 Peter 1: 16-21
Reading 4: 
Matthew 17: 1-9
By Barry Woodbridge

Last week’s gospel lection from Matt. 5: 1-12 is linked to this week’s by Matthew’s continuing development of the Moses-Jesus relationship. In Matt 5:1-12, the sermon was preached on the mountain (compared with Luke’s on the plain), and today Jesus is again on a mountain, as was Moses, when the next theophany occurs, transforming his ministry yet again.

4th Sunday after Epiphany

February 3, 2002
See Also: 
Reading 1: 
Micah 6: 1-8
Reading 2: 
Psalm 15
Reading 3: 
1 Corinthians 1: 18-31
Reading 4: 
Matthew 5: 1-12
By Barry Woodbridge

What is the theme for the Fourth Sunday in Epiphany? We ask because every other Sunday in Epiphany has a clear biblical narrative event or manifestation in the life of Jesus: the Magi, first miracle of turning water into wine, Jesus’ baptism, Jesus’ calling of the disciples, and on the last Sunday of Epiphany, the transfiguration. This Sunday alone does not usually have such as clear a defining biblical narrative event, except if that be the manifestation of Jesus in the preaching of the Sermon on the Mount.

7th Sunday of Easter

May 4, 2008
See Also: 
Reading 2: 
Psalm 68:12-10, 32-35
Reading 3: 
1 Peter 4:12-24, 5:6-11 or Acts 1:6-14
Reading 4: 
John 17:1-11
By Barry A. Woodbridge

Acts 1: 6-14
Empowerment of the Community Minus One

God’s reign will continue post-Jesus’ earthly ministry and pre-culmination of God’s universal plan. The mission of the church is the interim vehicle continuing Jesus presence and work among us. Luke’s Ascension narrative insures there are no insiders who have a gnosis of special eschatological occurrences and time tables.

6th Sunday of Easter

April 27, 2008
See Also: 
Reading 2: 
Psalm 66:8-20
Reading 3: 
1 Peter 3:13-22 or Acts 17:22-31
Reading 4: 
John 14:15-21
By Barry A. Woodbridge

Acts 17: 22-31
Engaging a Skeptical Pluralistic Culture in Effective Dialogue

Paul’s Mars Hill speech in the Areopagus occurs as a defining moment in his second missionary journey. Paul engages a pluralistic culture preoccupied with novelty (the preceding verse defines their itching to hear “something new”).

5th Sunday of Easter

April 20, 2008
See Also: 
Reading 2: 
Psalm 31:1-5, 15-16
Reading 3: 
1 Peter 2:2-10 or Acts 7:55-60
Reading 4: 
John 14:1-14
By Barry A. Woodbridge

Acts 7: 55-60

4th Sunday of Easter

April 13, 2008
See Also: 
Reading 2: 
Psalm 23
Reading 3: 
1 Peter 2:19-25 or Acts 2:42-47
Reading 4: 
John 10:1-10
By Barry A. Woodbridge

Once again the intertwining themes of the individual in community, and the proper shepherding of that community engage us in the texts for this fourth Sunday of Easter. (For additional detailed exegetical analysis of these texts verse by verse, please use the link to 2002 to study Ron Farmer’s careful discussion of these passages.)

Easter Sunday

April 15, 2001
See Also: 

Year A
Year B
Year C

Sermons:
Nance 2006
Sauter 2003

John Cobb on atonement
John Cobb on redemption
John Cobb on Jesus

Reading 2: 
Psalm 118:1-2,14-24
Reading 3: 
1 Corinthians 15:19-26 or Acts 10:34-43
Reading 4: 
John 20:1-18
By Barry A. Woodbridge

Note: In honor of William A. Beardslee, this week’s lectionary notes emphasize and suggest preaching on the epistle lesson for Easter Sunday, using Will’s commentary on 1 Cor. 15 in his First Corinthians A Commentary for Today (St. Louis: Chalice Press, 1994), pp. 143-152, as a basis for a process approach to the Paul’s proclamation of the resurrection.

2nd Sunday in Lent

February 24, 2002
See Also: 

Lenten Candle Liturgy
John Cobb on redemption
Biblical Preaching on the Death of Jesus (Cobb)

Reading 1: 
Genesis 12:1-4a
Reading 2: 
Psalm 121
Reading 3: 
Romans 4:1-5, 13-17
Reading 4: 
John 3:1-17
By Barry A. Woodbridge

The second Sunday in Lent presents a varied lectionary which should strongly prompt the initial question: What do all these texts have to do with the season of Lent?

Genesis 12 Yahweh calls Abraham into a covenant; Abraham enters it by leaving his country.

Psalm 121 From whence does our help come?

Romans 4 Abraham is reckoned righteous not by his works but by faith.

John 3 Nicodemus comes to Jesus by night.

1st Sunday in Lent

February 17, 2002
See Also: 

Lenten Candle Liturgy
John Cobb on redemption
Biblical Preaching on the Death of Jesus (Cobb)

Reading 1: 
Genesis 2:15-17; 3:1-7
Reading 2: 
Psalm 32
Reading 3: 
Romans 5: 12-19
Reading 4: 
Matthew 4: 1-11
By Barry A. Woodbridge

If the last Sunday in Epiphany were Transfiguration Sunday, this First Sunday in Lent has to be Temptation Sunday, but no one ever chooses to call it that.

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