Moses by John August Swanson. Image from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, Tenn. Original source © 1983 by John August Swanson.
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Swords into Plowshares
Isaiah 36:1-3, 13-20; 37:1-7; then 2:1-4 Commentary
by Amy G. Oden
Sennacherib who? Our Isaiah text is full of unfamiliar names and places, so your audience will need some help figuring out who is who.
Add to that the breaks between lectionary sections, and it can be confusing all around. This story lends itself to enactment, or use of different readers for each voice. That will create continuity of these fragments. Even so, the preacher will still need to summarize the plot developments here.
In fact, I suggest you tell the story of this text, briefly in your own words, before the scripture is read to orient listeners to what they will hear. For example, “You’re going to hear a story about a very powerful foreign king who tries to scare the king of Judah and his people. In fact, this foreign king will try to talk them out of trusting God, and prove his own might with his path of destruction. The foreign king is from Assyria. The king of Judah is Hezekiah, and he will turn to the prophet Isaiah as he considers how to respond.” Then read the text.
The narrative arc since September has been a powerful one, so review: God delivers the Hebrew people, creates a covenant ...
| Bible Text
2019-20 Worship resources
The narrative lectionary is a four-year cycle of readings. Read more.
Narrative Lectionary 149: Swords into Plowshares
November 16, 2014
Join Profs. Rolf Jacobson, Craig Koester and Kathryn Schifferdecker for "I Love to Tell the Story," a conversation on Year 1 of the narrative lectionary. This podcast covers the readings for Nov. 16, 2014: Isaiah 36:1-3, 13-20; 37:1-7; 2:1-4. Accompanying reading: Matthew 5:14.