We take a detour this Sunday, thanks to the alternate texts in the Revised Common Lectionary (RCL), which we will depart in a few weeks for our chronological lectionary. These alternate texts are “semi-continuous,” meaning the same book is covered for several weeks – ideal for sermon series on a particular book. In this case though, we are just using it to bring a fresh focus to the Gospel reading, which is the well-known feeding of the five thousand.
Ultimately, the goal of all texts on Sunday (including, ideally, the Psalm) is to point to a single theological expression. A reminder of something God has done, is doing, or will do for you His people. And while Jacob wrestling with God might seem to be a far cry from feeding a large crowd, we will see this week that, from God’s perspective, they accomplish the same goal of ministry.
I can’t tell you what that goal is right now – you should come Sunday to get that! But I can tell you that it might have something to do with the very famous psalm we will recite together that morning:
“The Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.”
Grace and Peace,