A New and Restorative Ordering of Life – Dennis Ormseth reflects on the kingdom of God and the great ecology of creation. Care for Creation Commentary on the Common Lectionary  Readings for Sunday June 12-18, Year B (2012, 2015, 2018, 2021, 2024)  Ezekiel 17:22-24 Psalm 92:1-4, 12-15 2 Corinthians 5:6-10 [11-13] 14-17 Mark 4:26-34 The lectionary for the this Sunday after Pentecost includes two readings, the Gospel and the second lesson, the interpretation of which present clear choices for or against a mandate for care of creation. First, with respect to the interpretation of Jesus’ parables in Mark, and more generally as well, Ched MyersRead More →

“How very good and pleasant it is when kindred live together in unity!” – Dennis Ormseth reflects on community, trinity, and unity. Care for Creation Commentary on the Common Lectionary  Readings for the Second Sunday of Easter, Year B (2018, 2021, 2024)  Acts 4:32-35 Psalm 133 1 John 1:1 – 2:2 John 20:19-31 We continue our exploration of “first things” or basic principles of our practice of Christian faith occasioned by the observance of Easter and their relationship to practices of care for creation. In the comment for Resurrection of Our Lord, we saw that the Resurrection of Jesus reveals the eschatological presence of God inRead More →

New Creation Is Proactive: Regenerative and Restoring – Dennis Ormseth reflects on becoming full participants in maximizing life’s creativity. Care for Creation Commentary on the Common Lectionary  Readings for the Fifth Sunday after Epiphany, Year B (2015, 2018, 2021, 2024)  Isaiah 40:21-31 Psalm 147:1-11, 20c 1 Corinthians 9:16-23 Mark 1:29-39 “For those who are in Christ, creation is new.  Everything old has passed away.  Behold, all things are new.”  2 Corinthians 5:7 (translation by David Rhoads) Why, exactly, is it appropriate to associate Jesus and “new creation”? The question calls for an extended Christological discussion far beyond the limits this commentary and the abilities of this commentator.Read More →

For Those Who Are in Christ, Creation Is New! – Dennis Ormseth reflects on driving out the demon of climate change denial. Care for Creation Commentary on the Common Lectionary  Readings for the Fourth Sunday after Epiphany, Year B (2015, 2018, 2021, 2024)  Deuteronomy 18:15-20 Psalm 111 1 Corinthians 8:1-13 Mark 1:21-28 “For those who are in Christ, creation is new.  Everything old has passed away.  Behold, all things are new.”  II Corinthians 5:7 (translation by David Rhoads) “For those who are in Christ, creation is new.” What, exactly does this promise mean? We have taken it as our epigraph for these comments on the lectionary texts for theRead More →

Joyful Anticipation of the Transformation of Creation – Dennis Ormseth reflects on the cosmological significance of Christ. Care for Creation Commentary on the Common Lectionary  Readings for the Third Sunday of Advent, Year B (2011, 2014, 2017, 2020, 2023) Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11 Psalm 126 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24 John 1:6-8, 19-28 Waiting for the coming of God. We gather for a third Sunday, impatiently perhaps, waiting still for the coming of God. The reading from Isaiah looks forward to the restoration of Jerusalem that will take place in “the year of the Lord’s favor, and the day of vengeance of our God,” which the prophet proclaims (61:2).Read More →

Feast on These Parables from Nature! – Dennis Ormseth  reflects on the messy business of God’s kingdom. Care for Creation Commentary on the Common Lectionary  Readings for Sunday July 24-30, Year A (2011, 2014, 2017, 2020, 2023) 1 Kings 3:5-12 Psalm 119:129-136 Romans 8:26-39 Matthew 13:31-33, 44-52 Our reflection on the teaching of Jesus, the Lord, the Servant of Creation, continues to explore themes significant for caring for creation days in a medley of new parables: the Mustard Seed; the Yeast, Treasure Hidden in a Field; A Merchant in Search of Fine Pearls; and a Net Thrown into the Sea. As with the parables from theRead More →

Improvisation — A Christian Stance of Hopefulness:  Robert Saler reflects on Isaiah 2:1-5 and Matthew 24:36-44. Care for Creation Commentary on the Common Lectionary (originally written by Robert Saler in 2013) Readings for the First Sunday of Advent, Year C (2013, 2016, 2019, 2022) Isaiah 2:1-5 Psalm 122 Romans 13:11-14 Matthew 24:36-44 At my seminary, I am currently facilitating an Augustine reading group. The group is taking the entire year to work our way through his magnum opus The City of God, purely for fun and edification. This 5th century text features Augustine engaging polemically with the educated pagans of his day, those who blamed Christians forRead More →

Expanding the Imagination with Vision: Robert Saler reflects on Isaiah 35. Care for Creation Commentary on the Common Lectionary (originally written by Robert Saler in 2013) Readings for the Third Sunday in Advent, Year A (2013, 2016, 2019, 2022) Isaiah 35:1-10 Psalm 146:5-10 James 5:7-10 Matthew 11:2-11 The Isaiah text for this week is another Advent reading that offers a unique eschatological perspective—one that might be labeled as a utopia were it not centered in the midst of the ongoing struggle for salvific wholeness experienced by God’s people Israel. The reading contains imagery that is deeply tied to the notion of renewed creation. Much likeRead More →