Have you noticed that the first reading each Sunday in Lent is part of another pattern? The lessons constitute a review of Redemptive History
- 1stSunday: Early Genesis—this year: The Fall of Adam & Eve
- 2nd: The Patriarchs—the Call of Abraham
- 3rd: Exodus—Water from the Rock in the Wilderness
- 4th: Kingdom of David & Solomon—Samuel anoints David
- 5th: The Prophets—the Valley of the Dry Bones
- 6th: Palm Sunday & Holy Week—Servant Songs from Isaiah
- Sunday & Wednesday: “I gave my back to the smiters…I know I shall not be put to shame.”
- Monday: “…to open the eyes of the blind, to bring…from prison those who sit in darkness”
- Tuesday: “It is too light a thing that you should be my servant…I will give you as a light to the nations…”
- Good Friday: “He was despised and rejected…he was wounded for our transgressions…he bore the sin of many”
The hymns of the church often embody these images as part of our Holy Week and Easter celebrations. Notice how the Exodus from Egypt and the Return from the Babylonian Captivity find their echoes in the death and resurrection of Christ and in the Church’s celebration of Baptism and Eucharist.
This Sunday it will be Ezekiel. “Dry bones, now hear the word of the Lord.” For Ezekiel’s audience it was the remarkable news that God would put back together the scattered remnant of Israel and make them alive again in the Promised Land. The New Testament Church hears it and rejoices that when God raised Jesus from the dead, we also were raised up and given new life.
Links to the appointed readings and prayer for today: