Each Monday we publish Sunday's Coming, an email-only post on the upcoming readings, written by our current Living by the Word columnist.
Exodus 1:8-2:10; Psalm 124; (Isaiah 51:1-6; Psalm 138;) Romans 12:1-8; Matthew 16:13-20
In our Gospel text, some of Jesus’ disciples find his teaching hard. Eating his body? Drinking his blood? I didn’t sign up for this. Couldn’t I just pray for you?
“That preacher is the next Billy Graham!” an excited worshipper said after hearing a young clergyperson deliver a powerful, heart-wrenching sermon.
“He’s a prophet—a new Martin Luther King!” a member of the crowd exclaimed after listening to the brilliant oratory of a rising star who called for justice.
The church is still uncomfortable with human bodies. It does little to promote the rich connection between bodies and Christian spirituality.
Paul uses "body" as a metaphor, and contemporary Christians do the same when we say "the body of Christ." This metaphorical usage generally takes precedence in the church’s practice.
Bodies matter for Paul. And they matter for Christian discipleship. Paul foregrounds the human body as critical for the Christian response to God's mercy.
Spiritual and Prophetic Writings
Revised Common Lectionary © 1992 the Consultation on Common Texts. Used by permission.
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