Texts for the Day
Year B Preview
Christ the King is the last Sunday of the liturgical year, with 2018 beginning the following week with the first Sunday of Advent. We will be in Year B. Instead of offering a study on the readings for the day, here is a preview of the year. The selections for the Revised Common Lectionary, the lectionary we use at St. James, can be found online at http://lectionary.library.vanderbilt.edu.
Old Testament – Usually the Old Testament reading is thematically chosen to match the Gospel reading. The exception is the alternate first reading during the season of Pentecost is a semi-continuous series. Over three years it covers selections from the entire Old Testament. This summer and fall, we will be starting with the books of Samuel and the first part of 1 Kings. Then we will read from Song of Solomon, Proverbs, Esther, Job, and Ruth. It’s not quite in order, but they put the wisdom books near the story of Solomon, as much of the wisdom literature is popularly attributed to him.
Epistle – The epistle readings for Epiphany, Easter, and Pentecost follow series, reading selections from each letter more or less in order. Epiphany will feature 1 Corinthians. Easter will be 1 John. In Pentecost we will hear from 2 Corinthians, Ephesians, James, and Hebrews.
Gospel – Year B focuses on the Gospel of Mark. During Advent, Epiphany, and Pentecost, most of the readings will be from that Gospel, often simply working their way through the book chapter by chapter. The Christmas season will feature Luke, as Mark has no infancy narrative. In Lent and Easter we will hear mostly from John. Mark is the shortest gospel and John does not have its own year, so here is where we make up some of that difference.
Bible reading plans – If you have a regular practice of Bible reading, one way to organize it would be to try to cover in their entirety several of the books from which we will be reading snippets on Sunday. My suggestions to start would be Mark, 1 and 2 Samuel, and 2 Corinthians.