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Dwelling in the Word: Luke 24

April 2, 2008

300px-caravaggioemmaus.jpgI will be preaching from Luke 24 on Sunday–the Walk to Emmaus.  This passage took on new meaning for me about a year and a half ago when I was reading Exiles:  Living Missionally in  Post-Christian Culture.  Michael Frost writes a comparative analysis of the 1601 and the 1606 versions of Supper at Emmaus by Caravaggio.  I was moved by the missional implications of reflecting on the two paintings in conjunction with Luke 24 (see blog post). 

I know Solomon’s Porch has a group that meets weekly to interact with the Scriptures indicated for the following Sunday.  The sermon arises out of this communal interaction with text.  Sometimes particular questions emerge that shape the direction of the message.  Other times it is stories that become illustrations woven into the sermon.  A hermeneutical community that helps to shape a word.  A Gospel message grounded in the lives of the members of the community. 

I have sometimes wished there could be a more communal process in the practice of preaching–more conversational, more constructivist.  Dwelling in the Word is one way we (in LMC and SMC) have sought to attend to Scripture communally.  

I would welcome anyone who would like to engage in this practice with the Luke 24 passage this week to respond with ways you sense God speaking to you or your community through this text.  I would especially welcome contributions from the SMC community!  Questions that emerge from dwelling in the word.  What you notice in the text.  What you hear and see Jesus doing in the text.  How Jesus is speaking to you…to us through this passage. 

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Jean Lengacher permalink
    April 3, 2008 10:23 am

    First, great idea. I agree that sermons are probably at their best when they are a communal project. So, here are a few ramblings–actually,I was drawn to the other lectionary text–1 Peter 1:22 and the movement from “purification of soul to obedience to truth to loving deep from the heart.” I suspect this is the same “purification/illumination/unitive” movement that our desert father/mothers and other monastics wrote about. And I suspect that Luke 24 speaks to this movement of transformation, too–disbelief/telling their story/retelling the Jesus story/breaking of bread. I don’t think we can enter fully into “breaking of the bread” until we have wrestled with “the things about Jesus of Nazareth.” Beautiful and powerful imagery; blessings on your sermon.

  2. just an apprentice permalink
    April 3, 2008 1:12 pm

    Thanks for sharing out of the Scripture texts for Sunday.

    I am meditating on how the movement of transformation–purification/illumination/unitive–is interconnected.

    Sincere love for each other as brothers and sisters emerges out of an experience of grace–being cleansed from my sins.

    It is interesting how Cleopas and the other disciple immediately (within the hour) turn around and head back to Jerusalem after they see who Jesus is in the breaking of the bread. Even though it was getting late. Even though Emmaus had been the end of the journey.

    An expression of how deeply united they were with the community of Jesus followers. Perhaps an expression of “loving each other intensely with all your hearts.”

  3. April 3, 2008 3:58 pm

    I appreciate your post and the comments so far. Some of the things I have also been considering.

    Initially, however, the breaking of bread struck me. It was in that very act that their eyes were open to “see” Jesus — and then he disappeared. I wonder why Jesus chose that moment for their eyes to be opened. Was there something significant in it? In any case, I can just feel their joy and excitement, especially considering they were willing to hike a couple hours back to Jerusalem, likely in partial or full darkness.

    It reminded me that in our breaking of bread together, Christ becomes the center of our focus and affection. It is truly is a sacrament of love and joy and unity, not only with Christ, but also with one another as we are the Body of Christ. That passion and excitement those disciples must have felt is inspiring — inspiration in the Story itself, excitement in sharing the Story, incredible desire to keep telling others the Story. It unified them as brothers and sisters. Their enthusiasm was contagious. It was if they had a Message and just couldn’t wait to hear what to do next with it. They were ready to GO! Of course, then Jesus told them to wait in the city for a while longer. I wonder how that must have felt.

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