summer solstice!

Monday, June 05, 2017

Pentecost A

1 Corinthians 12:3b-13

3bAnd no one can say "Jesus is Lord" except by the Holy Spirit. 4Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; 5and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; 6and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone. 7To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. 8To one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, 9to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, 10to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the discernment of spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11All these are activated by one and the same Spirit, who allots to each one individually just as the Spirit chooses. 12For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. 13For in the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.

The Day of Pentecost is the 50th Day of Easter!

• Time of the Spirit
• Season of the Church
• A Pentecostal Community filled with gifts from the Holy Spirit
• A second phase of Green and Growing Ordinary (ordered, organized, structured) Time. We experienced the first phase last winter with Sundays after the Epiphany.

During this season we'll be doing Third Article (of the Creed) theology related to the Holy Spirit. "Pneumatology" is one of the technical words for this theological category. First article theology would be theology of creation; second article, theology of redemption. Theology of the HS includes us as the called-out assembly (church/ ekklesia) and sent people (apostles / apostolos).
We'll continue to focus on the interdependence of all creation.

During this Time of the Church we're also visit some (geographical and social)
Third Space theology as we consider moving from:

• The everyday intimacy of geographical and social First Spaces that include face-to-face relationships of family, friends, neighbors on either side and across the street (even in this 21st century), local schools;
• Second Spaces that include many workplaces, university, more distant and structured settings that give us more choices about self-revelation;
• Third Spaces of affinity, trade, and professional groups that take us beyond the comfort of First Spaces and Second Spaces; at times geographically a considerable distance away with potential for greater anonymity; and for the past decade...
• Fourth Spaces – cyberspace! where you can choose to reveal who and where you are, try on new ideas and even new identities

Third Spaces and Fourth Spaces pick up on "all nations" in Jesus' Great Commission commandment at the conclusion of Matthew's gospel;.

Backtracking

• We've studied accounts from Luke's book of the Acts of the original apostles
• Revisited the upper room of Maundy Thursday where we've heard Jesus' command to obey and to love as he loves
• In the upper room we've also received Jesus' promise of the Holy Spirit and power—even to achieve "greater works" than Jesus himself did during his earthly ministry!
• Especially as we celebrated the Ascension (that's technically the 40th day of Easter) on the 7th Sunday of Easter, we considered the concept of ascendancy that denotes stewardship, caretaking, responsible sovereignty over all creation following the model and example Jesus gave us.

Corinth / Corinthians

The site of Aphrodite's temple! Rich, opulent, and worldly, a crossroads for international travel and commerce. The church at Corinth was full of factions and divisions. Jealousy, arrogance, and related. You get the picture?!
The two canonical letters to Corinthians are among at the apostle Paul's Seven (biblical number) undisputed epistles. The passage we read today sets the mood and the standard for our life and ministry as we move into almost six months of Ordinary Time Sundays that we number after the Pentecost event.

• The cross of Jesus Christ is central – Paul determines to preach only Christ crucified.
• The Holy Spirit gifts individuals with a wide variety of spiritual and practical gifts (vv. 1 Corinthians 12:8-10 lists a few); these gifts always are for the greater good – the commonwealth or common-weal (not woe!) of the gathered community of the body of Christ. No class, cultural, education, or ethnic boundaries. The indwelling Spirit we receive in our baptism into Jesus Christ's death and resurrection engulfs us in God's creative power of resurrection.
• 1 Corinthians 11:23-25 is earliest account of Jesus' "founding meal" of the Lord's Supper; one bread, one body; worthy reception in seeking the common good; 1 Corinthians 10 and 11
• 1 Corinthians include the famous love chapter 13 that picks up on the quality of love Jesus charges us with in the gospel we received from John's community.
• The cross of Jesus Christ is central to our proclaimed and enacted theology, but so is the resurrection — learn 1 Corinthians 15!

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