Psalm 95: 1-11

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Resources from 2020

  • Christ the King (A)(2020)

    by W. H. Bellinger, Jr.
  • Lent 3A (2020)

    by Phil Heinze
  • Sermon Starters (Christ the King)(A)(2020)

    by Scott Hoezee
    In Lent and in the month of March this year when I wrote a sermon starter on Psalm 95, I recalled a song setting of Psalm 95 that we sang pretty often in my Christian Reformed Church growing up. It was titled “Now with Joyful Exultation” and was set to a pretty jaunty tune in a major key, a tune that had what I could best describe as a fair bit of bounce and lilt. And that fit wonderfully for most of the words since this song was based on Psalm 95. “Now with joyful exultation let us sing to God our praise . . . For how great a God and glorious is the Lord of whom we sing.” Like its psalm of origin, this song is properly upbeat. Except on the last line of the fourth verse. . . at which point the final upward bounce of the melody (a jump of a sixth from G to Eb) suddenly seems perversely celebratory as the song concludes with the dire judgment spoken in God’s voice that some people “never in my rest shall share.” I always thought in my heart that after that final phrase we could as well utter a gleeful “Hey-Hey!” or a “Cha-Cha-Cha” as though we were smacking our lips over the prospect of God’s condemning certain people to eternal UN-rest. It always felt like singing a funeral song to the tune of “For He’s a Jolly Good Fellow” or something. But of course there is nothing actually delightful or happy about the historical warning with which Psalm 95 concludes...
  • Sermon Starters (Lent 3A)(2020)

    by Scott Hoezee
    In a memorable sermon titled “Have You Ever Heard John Preach?” Fred Craddock had a lovely line that so well sums up where most of us find ourselves as often as not, and possibly this is something that reflects the larger tension we find in also Psalm 95: “In my mind I serve God. But there’s another force in my life, and I say ‘I’m going to do that.’ I don’t do it. I say, ‘I’ll never do that.’ I do it. Crucified between the sky of what I intend and the earth of what I perform. That’s the truth.” Between the sky of our intentions and the earthly reality of our actions. Crucified between them. That’s the truth. And if it’s no fun to remind ourselves of our past failures, it’s also no fun to never remember them so as only to repeat them over and over. And over.
  • Lent 3A (2020)

    by Rolf Jacobson
  • Whole World in His Hands

    Art and Theology by Victoria Jones
    This is the Psalm reading for the last Sunday of the liturgical year, Christ the King Sunday. I’ve paired it with an Ottonian miniature from around 1015, which shows Christ, framed by a mandorla (an almond-shaped aureole), standing in a branched tree of life. The gold-leaf outline of this glory cloud encompasses heaven (Caelus, the top figure) and earth (Terra, aka Terrus, at bottom), two realms connected by Christ himself. (Earth is his footstool! That is, part of his throne.) He holds a globe in his right hand and is surrounded by symbols of the four evangelists (the tetramorph)—each supported by a water nymph representing one of the four rivers of paradise—and Sol (sun) and Luna (moon). I love how this image emphasizes the life-giving nature of Christ’s rule, and how it extends over all of creation...
  • Lent 3A (2020)

    by Sarah McGee
  • Massah to Messiah

    by Glenn Monson
  • Rebellious Creatures

    by Michael Ruffin
    Machines with artificial intelligence turning against the people who made them is a recurring theme in works of science fiction. One example is the 2004-08 Battlestar Galactica television series, which revolves around the revolt of androids called Cylons against their human creators. Well-known film examples include 1968’s 2001: A Space Odyssey and 1984’s Terminator (and its sequels). Books with this theme include 1954’s I, Robot by Isaac Asimov and 2011’s Robopocalypse by Daniel H. Wilson. That’s just a sampling. There are lots of such works. Such rebellion strikes me as ungrateful. I mean, the robots, androids, or computers wouldn’t exist had humans not made them. It’s not nice to bite the hand that programs you. On the other hand, such rebellion is predictable. It may even be inevitable...

Resources from 2014 to 2019

(In order to avoid losing your place on this page when viewing a different link, I would suggest that you right click on that link with your mouse and select “open in a new tabâ€. Then, when you have finished reading that link, close the tab and you will return to where you left off on this page. FWIW!)
  • Christ the King (A)(2014)

    by W. H. Bellinger, Jr.
  • Lent 3A (2017)

    by Phil Heinze
  • Lent 3A (2014)

    by Phil Heinze
  • Lent 3A (2017)

    by James Howell
  • Lent 3A (2014)

    by Rolf Jacobson
  • Lent 3A (2017)

    by Stan Mast
    Every parent has felt the sting of a child’s rejection. It hurts when they go their own way, disobeying our explicit rules for life, confident that their way is best, not trusting the parent’s wisdom and knowledge and love. But we parents get over our hurt, unless it goes on and on. Then the momentary anger that follows single acts of rebellion and disobedience becomes a broken heart and loving anger. That is how we should understand the anger of God against Israel in Psalm 95. It was not the rage of an enemy, but the deep disappointment of a broken heart.
  • Reign of Christ (A)

    by Car Shonamon
    There is a wonderful hymn titled, “This is my Father’s World” and it goes as follows: This is my Father’s world, And to my list’ning ears All nature sings, and round me rings The music of the spheres. This is my Father’s world: I rest me in the thought Of rocks and trees, of skies and seas— His hand the wonders wrought...
  • Lent 3A (2014)

    by Wesley White

Resources from the Archives

(In order to avoid losing your place on this page when viewing a different link, I would suggest that you right click on that link with your mouse and select “open in a new tabâ€. Then, when you have finished reading that link, close the tab and you will return to where you left off on this page. FWIW!)