Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Queerying 12th after Pentecost C

Periodic queerier, River Needham, queeries the Tanakh reading.

Tanakh: Jeremiah 2:4-13

Hear the word of the Becoming One, O House of Jacob, Every clan of the House of Israel!
Thus said the Becoming One: What wrong did your ancestors find in me that they abandoned me and went after delusion and were deluded?

They never asked themselves, “Where is the Becoming One, who brought us up from the land of Egypt, who led us through the wilderness, a land of deserts and pits, a land of drought and darkness, a land no human had traversed, where no human being had dwelt?”

I brought you to this country of farmland to enjoy its fruit and its bounty; but you came and defiled my land, you made my possession abhorrent. The priests never asked themselves, “Where is the Becoming One?” The guardians of the teaching ignored me; the rulers rebelled against me, and the prophets prophesied by Baal and followed what can do no good.

Oh, I will go on accusing you —declares the Becoming One— And I will accuse your children’s children! Just cross over to the isles of the Kittim and look, send to Kedar and observe carefully; see if anything like this has ever happened: has any nation changed its gods even though they are not gods? But my people have exchanged their glory for what can do no good. Be appalled, O heavens, at this; be horrified, utterly dazed! —says the Becoming One.

For my people have done a twofold wrong: they have forsaken me, the fount of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, which cannot even hold water.

Queeries for the text:
Why does God make this announcement?
Who is the voice of God?
How does the Becoming One deal with abandonment?
Where is the land no human had traversed and no human had dwelt?
How does land become defiled?
Who was Baal?
Why is the Becoming One accusing and commanding the heavens to be horrified?
How does the Becoming One justify Hir anger?
What is a cistern?


Rev. Emily E. Ewing queeries the Gospel reading.

Gospel: Luke 14:1, 7-14
On one occasion
when Jesus was going to the house
of a leader of the Pharisees
to eat a meal on the sabbath,
they were watching him closely.

7When Jesus noticed how the guests chose the places of honor,
he told them a parable.
8“When you are invited by someone to a wedding banquet,
do not sit down at the place of honor,
in case someone more distinguished than you has been invited by your host;
9and the host who invited both of you
may come and say to you,
‘Give this person your place,’
and then in disgrace you would start to take the lowest place.
10But when you are invited,
go and sit down at the lowest place,
so that when your host comes,
your host may say to you,
‘Friend, move up higher’;
then you will be honored
in the presence of all who sit at the table with you.
11For all who exalt themselves will be humbled,
and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

12Jesus said also to the one who had invited him,
“When you give a luncheon or a dinner,
do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors,
in case they may invite you in return,
and you would be repaid.
13But when you give a banquet,
invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind.
14And you will be blessed,
because they cannot repay you,
for you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”

Queeries for the text:
What did we skip?  What's missing?
How often did Jesus eat with Pharisees?
Who were watching Jesus closely?
How was honor important?
How do we exalt ourselves?
How are relationships transactional?
Are the categories as simple as Jesus claims?  Is Jesus creating a false binary?
Is this a parable or advice?  How has Jesus' advice caused harm to poor and/or disabled people?
What about upward mobility?

What are your queeries?

No comments: