The Reverend Elizabeth Bowyer

Introduction to the readings for the 17th Sunday after Pentecost, October 5, 2014

In our first reading for today from the book of Exodus, we hear God’s introduction of the 10 commandments, given to Moses and Aaron at Mt. Sinai.   Listen deeply to these words, offered so long ago for our faith ancestors struggling with what it means to live in right relationship with a gracious and abiding God.   Ask yourself: How might these words inform anew our personal lives and our life as a church as we discern what it means to develop and to maintain relationships with God and with each other in our context?  Our reading comes to us this morning from the book of Exodus, Chapter 20, verses 1-4; 7-9; and 12-20: “The Ten Commandments”

Insert the reading here….

Our responsive psalm this morning consists of two parts, one that celebrates and paints an amazing picture of God’s creative power in nature and another of God’s gift of law to the people.  This psalm lifts up God’s relationship with all of Creation as a gift as valuable as gold and as sweet as honey.  How appropriate for us to consider on this, the first Sunday in October!

Refrain #2 will be played, we will sing it together, and then we will read responsively from Psalm 19 found at Voices United, pages 740-741)

Psalm 19: “The heavens declare the glory of God”

Our gospel passage for today comes once again from the book of Matthew.  Today’s story picks up from where we left of last week as Jesus’ authority for teaching and healing in the temple on the day after his jubilant arrival into the city of Jerusalem.  The context of this morning’s reading is one of intense and deepening conflict between Jesus and his adversaries, the religious leaders of the day.  Here , we hear Jesus make reference to the chief cornerstone being rejected.

A reading from the gospel according to Matthew, Chapter 21, verses 33-46 “The unscrupulous tenants of the vineyard”….

Insert the reading here.

Reader: The word of God for the people of God.  All: Thanks be to God, amen.