Thursday, June 4, 2020

Queerying Holy Trinity A

River Needham, M.A. queeries the Tanakh reading.

Tanakh: Genesis 1:1-2:4a

At the starting point, God formed the cosmos and the earth. The earth did not have shape; and darkness was upon the surface of the deep. God’s breath hovered over the waters on the earth.

God said: Let light be. Then God saw the light and that it was Good. God pulled apart the light and the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness Night. Dusk and Dawn were in there too. The first day came to be. Then, God wanted there to be an atmosphere between the waters. Let the atmosphere divide water from the water. So God made the sky and divided the waters under it from the waters above it. And so it was. God called the atmosphere heaven. There was dusk, then dawn. The second day.

Next, God said: Let the waters below gather together so dry land can appear. And so it was. God called the dry land earth and the gathered waters God called seas. God saw that all this was good. Later, God said: Let the earth produce grass, herbs with seeds, trees that bear fruit. And so it was. The earth produced grass, herbs with seed, trees that bore fruit. God saw that all this was good. There was dusk, and dawn. The third day.

Then, God said “Let the sky have lights to divide the day from the night. Let them move about and distinguish signs, seasons, days, and years. Let them be lights in the atmosphere of the heavens to give light to the earth.” And so it was. So, God made two big lights. The biggest one ruled over the day, and the smaller of the big lights ruled over the night and stars. God set these lights in the atmosphere of the heavens so they could give light to the earth, to rule over the day and the night, and to divide the light from the darkness. God saw that all this was good. There was dusk, then dawn. The fourth day.

Next, God said “Let the waters move with collections of living beings. Let birds fly above the earth in the open atmosphere of heaven.” So, God created the great sea creatures, and every creepy-crawly, and the waters were filled with motion; so was the atmosphere of heaven. God saw that all this was good, then God blessed the animals and said “ Be fruitful. Multiply. Fill the waters in the seas and let the birds multiply in the earth. There was dusk, then dawn. The Fifth day.

Then, God said “Let the earth create living creatures after it’s kind. Cattle, insects, and beasts of the earth after its own kind.” And so it was. God made living creatures on the ground after its kind, and every insect after its kind. God saw that all this was good. So, God said let us make a human in our image, just like us. Let them have responsibility over the fish of the sea, birds of the air. Over the cattle and all the things on the earth, even the insects. God created the human in their own image. In the image of God they created them. Male, female, between and beyond God created them. Then, God blessed them and said to them: Be fruitful and multiply and replenish the earth and take responsibility for it, and for the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, and for every living thing down to the smallest insect.

God said: Look – I have given you every herb yielding seed which lives anywhere on the earth, and every tree which produces seeds in its fruit. To you, these things are food. Likewise, to every animal on the earth, and to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth with a lifeforce, I have given every green herb for food. And so it was.

God saw every thing that they had made, and Look! It was very good. Then there was dusk, and there was dawn. The sixth day.

So, the heaven and the earth were finished. The whole project. Then on the seventh day, God finished their work and they rested on the seventh day from all they had made. God blessed the seventh day and hallowed it, because in it they rested from all their work which God did in the course of creating.

These were the stories of Heaven and Earth when they were created.

Queeries for the text:
Who is the main character in this story?
Why was this creation narrative chosen?
Where is humanity’s responsibility today?
What queeries do you have for this text?
What does it mean for earth to have a start or a birthday?
Are there multiple starting points? What was present at this starting point?
What does it mean to be beyond or between gender?


Rev. Emily E. Ewing queeries the Gospel reading.

Photo from Disabled and Here
Gospel: Matthew 28:16-20

16Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. 17When they saw Jesus, they worshiped Them; and some doubted. 18And Jesus came and said to the disciples, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Provider and of the Prophet and of the Protest, 20and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

Queeries for the text:
Which mountain was it?
What are the characteristics of God?  How are our songs about the Spirit disconnected from scriptural references?
What is divine authority like?
How else can we understand the Trinity?
What does it mean for God to be Provider?
What does it mean for God to be Prophet?
What does it mean for God to be Protest?
How is Jesus' great commission problematic?
How is Jesus' great commission comforting?

What are your queeries?

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