on-scripture

In these unprecedented times, Odyssey has heard from our faith network a desire for brief, shareable media elements tied to the Lectionary cycle of Scripture. Suddenly, ON Scripture, our high-quality short videos and accompanying materials with insights from leading biblical scholars, produced from 2011-2017, has fresh relevance!

Thus, starting today, Odyssey is thrilled to offer FREE access to the ON Scripture videos and materials pertaining to our current location in the Lectionary cycle (Year A, Lent), as well as several off-Lectionary resources that may be particularly helpful in this moment.

Ways to use the ONScripture videos & accompanying materials:

  • As part of your virtual worship service. Some preachers have used the videos within sermons, as a part of exploring the Biblical passage together. For instance, if your community is using Zoom to worship together, your “share screen” options allow you to share a video with all viewers. Alternatively, you can share links to the videos via email or via the “chat” function of Zoom.
  • As a virtual Bible study. Whether or not your community’s worship traditions include following the Lectionary, this option provides an easy way to gather small groups to read Scripture, watch a video featuring top biblical scholars exegeting the text, and prompt rich conversation.
  • An additional resource to offer your communities for Biblical reflection and spiritual growth.

The cost? $0! We only ask that you let us know how these materials have been helpful for you and your faith community in these current times. For more information, contact Anne Faustin Davis, [email protected].

ON Scripture – The Bible was made possible by generous grants from Lilly Endowment Inc. and the Henry Luce Foundation.

Lectionary Selections

The ON Scripture-The Bible archive included several extraordinary commentaries for the Liturgy of the Passion and Easter Day from the current Lectionary Year and from other years as well. We offer all five to you in this time of need.

Liturgy of the

Christianity’s First Hate Crime
by Wendy Farley

(Isaiah 50:4-9, Philippians 2:5-11 (1-4), Matthew 26, 27)

God created the world and loves humanity. Nothing, no person, no religion, no race, no ecosystem, no nation, no blade of grass was made without Word, Wisdom, Love. Humanity is all one in the eye of the divine, as a river is one though made of many countless drops of water.

Download Full Lectionary (pdf)

What is a Hate Crime?

Sister Acts of Compassion

Sunday of the Passion: Palm Sunday (Year B, RCL) – Stories and Letters From Prison by Barbara Lundblad

(Philippians 2:5–11)

Some years ago, Carl Jung told the story of a man who asked a rabbi why God was revealed to many people in days of old, but now nobody sees God. “Why is this?” he asked. The rabbi answered, “Because nowadays no one bows low enough.” Perhaps we are looking for God in all the wrong places.

Download Full Lectionary (pdf)

Walter Brueggemann On The Liturgy Of The Passion

(Isaiah 50:4-9a)

The voice that speaks in Isaiah 50:4 – 9a is the poet of the exile himself. Here he offers an autobiographical reflection on his call as a prophet sent by God to the deported Jews in Babylon in the sixth century BCE. His message to the Jews is they are now free to go back home to Jerusalem. This freedom came, says the poet, because of the dispatch of Cyrus the Persian at the behest of YHWH, the Lord of all of history.

Download Full Lectionary (pdf)

Seeing And Believing at Easter Time
by Greg Carey

(John 20:1-18)

Easter Sunday marks the holiest, most exalted moment of the Christian year. In Easter services all over the world, trumpets and organs blast. Flowers transform churches with their brightness. Worship leaders boldly proclaim: “Christ is risen!” Congregations echo back: “Christ is risen indeed!”

Download Full Lectionary (pdf)

Do You Believe in God?

The Night Ministry Bus Delivers Holistic Health with Compassion

Compassion That Moves
by Shively Smith

(Matthew 9:35-10:8) Copyright: 2017

Compassion. I am not always sure Christians understand the full weight and work of its meaning. I remember growing up hearing the phrase “moved to compassion” touted in church and family conversations. As my childhood experiences revealed, compassion is often described as a state of being or feeling in which something has occurred to move someone to feel sympathy, empathy, perhaps even pity for someone or something else.

Download Full Lectionary (pdf)

SECOND WEEK

Wounded Resurrection: The Body of Christ for the Body of Earth by William P. Brown

(John 20: 19-31)

The gap continues to widen between liberals and conservatives regarding the distressing reality of climate change. It is perplexing, given that science continues to confirm humanity’s central role in affecting global warming. It is even more perplexing that greater familiarity with science does not guarantee a greater sense of urgency as evidenced in recent research.

Download Full Lectionary (pdf)

Tri Robinson: Why the Environment Must Be a Christian Priority

THIRD WEEK

Living as Sojourners in a Strange Land
by Onleilove Alston

(1 Peter 1:17-23)

I am a part of a sojourning people, a diaspora people. Taken from Nigeria to toil on the Alston plantations of America my Hausa ancestors migrated to Nigeria from the Middle East according to scholars. In the 1960’s my maternal grandparents left North Carolina and eloped on the way to Brooklyn, New York. They were a part of the millions who left the south for northern cities in the Great Migration.

Download Full Lectionary (pdf)

The Biblical Call to Welcome the Stranger

FOURTH WEEK

A Radical Ethic of Love
by Shane Claiborne

(Acts 2:42-47)

One of the first things that happened as the Church was born that first Pentecost 2000 years ago… is that they started sharing everything they had. They worshipped in their homes. The Gospel was lived out of dinner tables and living rooms. And just as amazing as speaking in tongues, was this: THEY SHARED.

Download Full Lectionary (pdf)

The Simple Way: The Greening of Philadelphia’s Concrete Jungle

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

Breaking the Law to Feed the Homeless

You Don’t Want To Be A Prophet
by Eric Barreto

(Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11) Copyright: 2014

You don’t want God to ask you to be a prophet. You really don’t. When God calls you to some holy task, you might expect a contemplative path, a quiet life of service and love of neighbor. You might expect a comfortable life of piety and hopefulness, grace and caring.

Download Full Lectionary (pdf)

An Amazing Partnership With God
by James Forbes

(1 Kings 17:8-24) Copyright 2016

God’s call of Elijah was an invitation to a beautiful divine/human partnership of faithfulness and faithful service. It was based on a three-point contract: HO-GO-LO.

“HO” indicates that God had to get his attention. It was important for Elijah to know who was calling him, to whom he was accountable, under whose guidance he was to serve and upon whom he could depend for direction, protection and provisions.

Download Full Lectionary (pdf)

God’s Little Acre: Feeding the Hungry

Street Voices: How We Pray

The Power Of Prayer…At The Kmart
by Susan Sparks

(Luke 11: 1-13) copyright: 2013

When I want to remind myself of the power of prayer, I go to the Astor Place Kmart on the lower east side of Manhattan. Sure, I could read Kierkegaard or Augustine, but I prefer the Kmart. Specifically I favor an area in the far back corner of the basement. It is devoid of windows or natural light with a back wall of clear glass that faces the dungeon-like dark tunnel of the Number 6 subway train. There, you will find the most unexpected of things — a plant nursery.

Download Full Lectionary (pdf)

ON Scripture - The Bible was made possible through generous grants
from Lilly Endowment Inc. and the Henry Luce Foundation.

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