We kick off Lent this week with some reflections on Lenten practices. And we see how entering into Lent after Transfiguration Sunday forces us to leave the glory of the mountain in favor of the road to Jerusalem.
Deuteronomy 26:1-11 The offering of the fruits of the land is a seal and celebration of the fact that God has fulfilled God’s promise to give the land to the people of Israel. They have transformed the land from pastoral to cultivated. And this celebration only comes on the heels of slavery and suffering in Egypt: God is faithful through delivering them from afflictions.
Psalm 91:1-2, 9-16 Wrestling with a text that makes it seem like this life will be better than what most of us experience. And the Jesus story stands next to it in sharp contrast, specifically as Jesus rejects the Satanic invitation to entrust himself to the narrative of this psalm.
Romans 10:8b-13 We navigate the significance of confession and belief in the context of a faith that calls for radical dedication and inclusion of surprising social groups.
Luke 4:1-13 Finally! A fasting text to help springboard our own Lenten fast. Jesus refuses the way of glory in favor of entrusting himself to God’s very different plan. Jesus is the faithful son of God that Israel was supposed to be. And, Jesus is rejecting a satanic image of God.
Aric Clark is a writer, a speaker, and Presbyterian minister who lives in Portland, Oregon with his wife and two gremlins pretending to be his sons. He is the co-author of Never Pray Again: Lift Your Head, Unfold Your Hands, and Get To Work, a book which challenges readers to embrace a concrete other-centered spirituality. He is also the creator of LectionARIC a youtube channel for hermeneutical vlogs. His most recent project is a video curriculum for small groups introducing critical tools for studying scripture called Strange Book of Books. When he is not writing, preaching, or parenting, Aric can be found engaging his tabletop gaming hobby, or cooking for a crowd of random strangers he invited home without his wife’s permission. He is a pacifist and he still can’t grow a beard.
Daniel Kirk is a writer, speaker, blogger, and New Testament professor who lives in San Francisco, CA. He holds a Ph.D. in New Testament from Duke University and is the author of a pair of books, Unlocking Romans: Resurrection and the Justification of God and Jesus Have I Loved, but Paul? His third book A Man Attested by God: the Human Jesus of the Synoptic Gospels, is off to the printers. He blogs regularly at StoriedTheology.com (http://patheos.com/blogs/storiedtheology). You can follow him on Twitter @jrdkirk and on Facebook at Facebook.com/jrdkirk.