Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Queerying Easter 3C

Rev. Emily E. Ewing queeries the Acts and Gospel readings.

Acts 9:1-6 [7-20]
Meanwhile Saul,
still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of Jesus,
went to the high priest
2and asked him for letters to the synagogues at Damascus,
so that if Saul found any who belonged to the Way, of any gender,
he might bring them bound to Jerusalem.
3Now as Saul was going along and approaching Damascus,
suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him.
4He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him,
“Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?”
5Saul asked,
“Who are you, Sovereign?”
The reply came,
“I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting.
6But get up and enter the city,
and you will be told what you are to do.”

[7The ones who were traveling with Saul stood speechless
because they heard the voice but saw no one.
8Saul got up from the ground,
and though his eyes were open,
he could see nothing;
so they led Saul by the hand and brought him into Damascus.
9For three days Saul was without sight,
and neither ate nor drank.

10Now there was a disciple in Damascus named Ananias.
The Sovereign said to him in a vision,
Ananias answered,
“Here I am, Sovereign.”
11The Sovereign said to Ananias,
“Get up and go to the street called Straight,
and at the house of Judas look for a man of Tarsus named Saul.
At this moment he is praying,
12and he has seen in a vision a man named Ananias come in
and lay his hands on Saul so that he might regain his sight.”
13But Ananias answered,
“Sovereign, I have heard from many about this man,
how much evil he has done to your saints in Jerusalem;
14and here he has authority from the chief priests
to bind all who invoke your name.”
15But the Sovereign said to Ananias,
“Go, for he is an instrument whom I have chosen
to bring my name before Gentiles and rulers
and before the people of Israel;
16I myself will show Saul how much he must suffer
for the sake of my name.”

17So Ananias went and entered the house.
He laid his hands on Saul and said,
“Brother Saul,
the Sovereign Jesus,
who appeared to you on your way here,
has sent me so that you may regain your sight
and be filled with the Holy Spirit.”
18And immediately something like scales fell from Saul's eyes,
and his sight was restored.
Then he got up and was baptized,
19and after taking some food,
Saul regained his strength.
For several days he was with the disciples in Damascus,
20and immediately he began to proclaim Jesus in the synagogues, saying,
“Jesus is the One born of God.”]

Queeries for the text:
Who breathes threats and murder against faithful people today?
How do we persecute Jesus today?
How much evil is done while thinking it is for God?
How is blindness a gift for Saul?
Why would anyone want a street (or anything) called Straight?
How much must Saul suffer for the sake of the Holy Name?
When do we begin to call him Paul?
When have we encountered the Divine?  Do we recognize it?  Do we name it as such?


Gospel: John 21:1-19
After these things
Jesus showed themself again to the disciples by the Sea of Tiberias;
and they showed themself in this way.
2Gathered there together were Simon Peter,
Thomas called the Twin,
Nathanael of Cana in Galilee,
the sons of Zebedee,
and two others of the disciples.
3Simon Peter said to them,
“I am going fishing.”
They said to him,
“We will go with you.”
They went out and got into the boat,
but that night they caught nothing.
4Just after daybreak,
Jesus stood on the beach;
but the disciples did not know that it was Jesus.
5Jesus said to them,
“Children, you have no fish, have you?”
They answered Jesus,
6Jesus said to them,
“Cast the net to the right side of the boat,
and you will find some.”
So they cast it,
and now they were not able to haul it in
because there were so many fish.
7That disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter,
“It is the Sovereign!”
When Simon Peter heard that it was Jesus,
he put on some clothes, for he was naked,
and jumped into the sea.
8But the other disciples came in the boat,
dragging the net full of fish,
for they were not far from the land,
only about a hundred yards off.

9When they had gone ashore,
they saw a charcoal fire there,
with fish on it, and bread.
10Jesus said to them,
“Bring some of the fish that you have just caught.”
11So Simon Peter went aboard and hauled the net ashore,
full of large fish,
a hundred fifty-three of them;
and though there were so many,
the net was not torn.
12Jesus said to them,
“Come and have breakfast.”
Now none of the disciples dared to ask Jesus,
“Who are you?”
because they knew it was the Sovereign.
13Jesus came and took the bread and gave it to them,
and did the same with the fish.
14This was now the third time that Jesus appeared to the disciples
after being raised from the dead.

15When they had finished breakfast,
Jesus said to Simon Peter,
“Simon son of John,
do you love me more than these?”
Simon Peter said to Jesus,
“Yes, Sovereign;
you know that I love you.”
Jesus said to him,
“Feed my lambs.”
16A second time Jesus said to him,
“Simon son of John,
do you love me?”
Simon Peter said to Jesus,
“Yes, Sovereign;
you know that I love you.”
Jesus said to him,
“Tend my sheep.”
17Jesus said to Simon Peter the third time,
“Simon son of John,
do you love me?”
Peter felt hurt because Jesus said to him the third time, “Do you love me?”
And Peter said to Jesus,
“Sovereign, you know everything;
you know that I love you.”
Jesus said to him,
“Feed my sheep.
18Very truly, I tell you,
when you were younger,
you used to fasten your own belt and to go wherever you wished.
But when you grow old,
you will stretch out your hands,
and someone else will fasten a belt around you
and take you where you do not wish to go.”
19(Jesus said this to indicate
the kind of death by which Peter would glorify God.)
After this Jesus said to him,
“Follow me.”

Queeries for the text:
How many times will Jesus show themself to the disciples?
Why did Simon Peter want to go fishing?
Do the fishing disciples always follow instructions and advice from strangers they don't recognize?
How does the Beloved Disciple know it's Jesus?
Why is Simon Peter in such a rush to get to Jesus?
Why does the disciple whom Jesus loves wait for the boat to get to short to see Jesus?
Why does Jesus want more fish if some was already on the fire?
Why 153?
How many times must Jesus appear for the disciples to get it?
Why does Jesus ask Simon Peter three times?

What are your queeries?

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