the tentmaker

daily thoughts on the common lectionary

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Location: Sharpsburg, Georgia, United States

"...because he was of the same trade, he stayed with them, and they worked together — by trade they were tentmakers." Acts 18:3. Tentmaker is a title taken by bi-vocational pastors. As such, I am both a pastor and a project manager. I am a pastor of a local congregation of moderate, accepting and affirming people who worship in the Baptist tradition. We call our church "Hope Memorial Baptist" and we are about 40 in number. I am also a project manager of major construction projects for the State of Georgia. My home and church is in rural Coweta County, between Peachtree City and Newnan, with a mailing address of Sharpsburg, Georgia.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Old Testament Reading

Elijah is more than a prophet in the tradition of Nathan, Isaiah and Jeremiah. Perhaps we should think of him more as a holy warrior. Following the defeat of the priests of Baal on Carmel, Elijah leads the slaughter of 400 priests. In our passage for this week, Elijah has heard the voice of God sending him on a military recruitment mission. The instruciton that God gives him is to mount a coup against Ahab and Jezebel. We never read of Hazael of Aram (now Syria) being annointed. Jehu is annointed later by Elisha, not Elijah (2 Kings 9:1-10).

Annointing in the ancient middle East was usually performed by pouring oil over the head of the one being annointed, as Samuel annointed David (1 Samuel 16:13) But when Elijah meets up with Elisha, instead of annointing him with oil, he throws his mantle over him (the same mantle he used to shield himself from the presence of God - 1 Kings 19:13).

Perhaps the part of this passage that connects it with this week's Gospel passage is that when Elisha is called he asks to go home to settle his personal affairs and bid farewel to his parents. Elijah allows this preparatory act whereas in the Gospel passage, following Jesus is a more imperative and demanding call.


Anonymous nwc said...

Good to see you blogging again.

6/28/2007 5:45 PM  

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