A good friend of mine wrote a Declaration for Life, making a strong statement regarding the dignity of all human life, even that of the unborn. I invite you to read and sign the declaration.
Another attempt to visually represent a rich, dynamic process!
- Jesus, his audience, their expectations, and his message to them (the original context of the events as they happened decades before the gospel writers dealt with them).
- The gospels as they fit within the full sweep of God’s creative and redemptive purpose and activity, which is reflected in the perspectives of Christ, the gospel writers, and the church through the ages (biblical theology–the canonical context).
- The church as it circulated and used the gospels in worship and then came to affirm them, together, as the normative witness to Christ for the whole church (the applied context–as it is historically been understood).
- And finally the church in our time as it too receives the gospels as well as all of the reflection on them by the church through the ages as the authentic and normative witness to Christ as well as the understanding of all that he meant and means for the church in every age (the applied context–as it is contemporary to us).
My Biblical Hermeneutics students often struggled to understand the many layers of context we see in scripture, all of which are important to understand in both their uniqueness and interrelationship if we are to most fully and appropriately understand scripture as it relates to theology and the life of the church both in history and today. The following diagram attempts to capture those layers and their scope in relationship to one another.
This diagram is meant to illustrate the nature of the church as the body of Christ. The path of the individual into the church is represented in the spiral in the center, the journey of which is sacramental and into the worship of the community and all that means in preparing the church for he life in and for the world.
The following is a guide for individual and family devotion during Holy Week. A PDF of the guide can also be downloaded from this link: Holy Week devotional guide.
Suggested for use with the readings for each day in Holy Week for individual or family prayer. Adapted from the Greek Orthodox prayer book for Holy Week.
Blessed is our God, always, now and forever. Glory to you, Lord!
O heavenly king, comforter, the Spirit of truth, ever-present and filling all things, the treasure of all blessings and giver of life, come and dwell within us; cleanse us from every blemish, and save us, O blessed one.
Holy God, holy mighty, holy immortal, have mercy on us. (3X)
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.
As it was in the beginning is now, and shall be forever. Amen.
Read the psalm
All-holy Trinity, have mercy on us. Lord, pardon our sins; Master, forgive our iniquities; O holy one, visit and heal our infirmities, for your name’s sake. Lord have mercy, Christ have mercy, Lord have mercy.
Read the Old Testament and epistle readings
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us. Save us from the time of trial, and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours now and forever. Amen.
Read the gospel
Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia! Glory to you, O God. Our hope, our Lord, Glory to you.
Prayer—seek God bringing praise, petitions, and gratitude to him.
Help us, save us, have mercy upon us, and protect us, O God, by your grace. Amen.
Glory to you, O God, our hope, Glory to you!
May Christ, our true God, the Lord, who willingly came to his passion for our salvation, through the intercessions of his all-pure and holy mother; the power of the precious and life-giving cross; the protection of the honored powers of heaven; the supplications of the honored, glorious prophet and forerunner John the Baptist; the holy, glorious, and all-laudable apostles; the holy, glorious, and victorious martyrs; our saintly and god-bearing Fathers; the holy and righteous divine ancestors Joachim and Anna; of the blessed Clement of Rome, our beloved patron, and of all the saints, have mercy on us and save us, as a good, loving, and merciful God. Amen.
The mission and anointing of the servant upon whom the Spirit of God rests and who has come to establish justice.
Psalm 36.5-11; Isaiah 42.1-9; Hebrews 9.11-15; John 12.1-11
The commission of the Messiah, the light to the nations, and the scandal of unbelief.
Psalm 71.1-14; Isaiah 49.1-7; 1 Corinthians 1.18-31; John 12.20-36
The passion of our Lord and his betrayal.
Psalm 70; Isaiah 50.4-9a; Hebrews 12.1-3; John 13.21-32
Three special days—a time to die to sin
Adapted from Robert Webber, Ancient-Future Time, pages 123-134
Our spiritual journey is rooted in the great mystery of Christ’s death and resurrection, which is remembered especially on the three great days in Holy Week, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Holy Saturday (called the paschal Triduum).
We have the opportunity to observe these three days with the humility and focus befitting the redeemed who owe our lives to Jesus Christ and what he suffered on our behalf. Therefore, these three days should not to be taken lightly or frittered away in casual conversation, the search for pleasure, or the pursuit of business. In these days we experience and encounter our own reality in the reality of Christ’s horrible death and burial and in his triumphant resurrection from the dead. If we miss these days, we have missed the heart of our spiritual pilgrimage.
Therefore we ought to organize our time and commitments in such a way that we can center entirely on our own participation in the death and resurrection of Jesus and do our best to set aside anything that might interfere with the deep spiritual focus these days bring to us and the unique ways the Holy Spirit can speak to us through their observance.
We pass with Jesus into the darkness of his last night in which his determination to go to the cross is set in vivid contrast to the powers against which he must struggle. We walk that path with him.
Psalm 116.1-2, 12-19; Exodus 12.1-4, (5-10), 11-14;1 Cor. 11.23-26; John 13.1-17, 31b-35
We worship with both the sorrow we bring through our identification with Jesus in his death and the joy we experience knowing that his death was the death of death, the ruination of the powers of evil.
Psalm 22; Isaiah 52.13-53.12; Hebrews 10.16-25 or 4.14-16; 5.7-9; John 18.1-19.42
A day of rest and preparation for the great service of resurrection (the vigil).
Psalm 31.1-4, 15-16; Job 14.1-14 or Lamentations 3.1-9, 19-24; 1 Peter 4.1-8; Matthew 27.57-66 or John 19.38-42
Suggestions for reflection and discipline during Holy Week
Take time each day
- To remember God’s mighty acts of salvation and consider what they mean to your spiritual journey and to Falcon Ekklesia as the body of Christ in our community.
- Reflect on the past year:
- How have you entered into his death this year? What sins in your life need to be brought to death?
- How have you been raised to new life in his resurrection this year? What in your life still needs renewal?
Consider reorganizing your time leading up to Easter and make it a point to be participate in all the celebrations of the church. Demonstrate the importance of your faith, your submission to Christ as Lord, and your grateful love for his sacrifice by refraining from anything that would interfere with the worship of the body of Christ and your own focus on Christ’s death and resurrection.
Extend the fast through the week, perhaps through simplfied meals each day, continuing to limit your diet, or abstaining from a meal or two each day.
Some of these are very good sources to which I make (or will make) reference in material that I post to this cite, but they are not all as directly pertinent to my focus on sacramental spirituality and formation as those I list as recommended sources elsewhere.
Anglican Mission in the Americas. “Solemn Declaration of the Anglican Mission in America, submitted in Kampala, 1999.” http://www.theamia.org/files/Solemn%20Declaration.doc (9 September 2006).
Anglican Mission in the Americas. “What We Believe.” http://www.theamia.org/amia/index.cfm?ID=D44302E0-E9DA-475B-B5ECCE6E69F8CF21 (9 September 2006).
“Articles of Religion, XXV.” In The Book of Common Prayer and Administration of the Sacraments and Other Rites And Ceremonies of the Church According to the Use of the Church of England. 1662 edition, 703-704. New York: Oxford University Press.
“Articles of Religion, XXVIII.” In The Book of Common Prayer and Administration of the Sacraments and Other Rites And Ceremonies of the Church According to the Use of the Church of England. 1662 edition, 705-706. New York: Oxford University Press.
Barclay, William. The New Daily Study Bible: The Acts of the Apostles. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 2003.
Barclay, William. The New Daily Study Bible: The Letters of James and Peter. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 2003.
Barclay, William. The New Daily Study Bible: The Letter to the Hebrews. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 2002.
Barclay, William. The New Daily Study Bible: The Letter to the Romans. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 2002.
Barclay, William. The New Daily Study Bible: The Letters to the Corinthians. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 2002.
Barclay, William. The New Daily Study Bible: The Letters to the Galatians and Ephesians. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 2002.
Barclay, William. The New Daily Study Bible: The Letters to the Philippians, Colossians, and Thessalonians. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 2003.
The Book of Common Prayer and Administration of the Sacraments and Other Rites And Ceremonies of the Church According to the Use of the Episcopal Church. 1979 edition. New York: Oxford University Press, 1990.
The Book of Common Prayer and Administration of the Sacraments and Other Rites And Ceremonies of the Church According to the Use of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America. 1928 edition. New York: Oxford University Press.
Bruce, F. F. The Book of Acts, revised ed., The New International Commentary on the New Testament, ed. F. F. Bruce, Grad Rapids, Mich.: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1988.
Clement of Alexandria, “The Instructor.” In Ante-Nicene Fathers: The Writings of the Fathers Down to A.D. 325, Vol. 2, ed. Alexander Roberts and James Donaldson, 207-296. N.P.: Christian Literature Publishing Company, 1885–1900. Reprint, Peabody, Mass.: Hendrickson Publishers, 1999.
Coogan, Michael D. The New Oxford Annotated Bible: New Revised Standard Version, 3rd ed. New York: Oxford University Press, 2001.
Craddock, Fred B. First and Second Peter and Jude, Westminster Bible Companion, eds. Patrick D. Miller and David L. Bartlett. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 1995.
Dyrness, William. Themes in Old Testament Theology. Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press, 1979.
Griffith Thomas, W. H. The Principles of Theology: An Introduction to the Thirty-Nine Articles. Eugene, Oregon: Wipf and Stock Publishers, 2005.
Latourette, Kenneth Scott. A History of Christianity. Vol. 1, To A.D. 1500. New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 1975. Revised ed., Peabody, Mass.: Hendrickson Publishers, Prince Press, 2003.
“The Ministration of Publick Baptism of Infants to Be Used in the Church.” In The Book of Common Prayer and Administration of the Sacraments and Other Rites And Ceremonies of the Church According to the Use of the Church of England. 1662 edition, 322-331. New York: Oxford University Press.
Mitton, C. Leslie. Ephesians, The New Century Bible Commentary, eds. Ronald E. Clements and Matthew Black. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1973.
Murphy, Joseph P. “Re: Anglican Studies resources question.” Personal email (11 July 2006).
O’Brien, Peter T. Colossians, Philemon, Word Biblical Commentary, eds. David A. Hubbard and Glenn W. Barker, vol. 44. Waco, Tex.: Word Books, Publisher, 1982.
“The Order of the Administration of the Lord’s Supper, or Holy Communion,” In The Book of Common Prayer and Administration of the Sacraments and Other Rites And Ceremonies of the Church According to the Use of the Church of England. 1662 edition, 293-321. New York: Oxford University Press.
Pelikan, Jaraslov. The Christian Tradition: A History of the Development of Doctrine. Vol. 3, The Growth of Medieval Theology (600–1300). Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1978.
Quicke, Michael J. 360 Degree Preaching: Hearing, Speaking, and Living the Word. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Academic, 2003.
Ross, Allen P. Recalling the Hope of Glory: Biblical Worship from the Garden to the New Creation. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Kregel Publications, 2006.
Stoddard, David A. and Robert J, Tamsey. The Heart of Mentoring: Ten Proven Principles for Developing People to Their Fullest Potential. Colorado Springs: NavPress, 2003.
“The Supper of the Lorde and the Holy Communion Commonly Called the Masse.” In The Book of Common Prayer, 1549 edition. [book online]; available from http://justus.anglican.org/resources/bcp/1549/Communion_1549.htm; Internet.
Sykes, Stephen, John Booty, and Jonathan Knight, The Study of Anglicanism, revised ed. Minneapolis, Minnesota: Fortress Press, 1998.
Zahl, Paul F. M. The Protestant Face of Anglicanism. Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1998.
The following are sources that I highly recommend (watch for frequent additions):
Kelly, G.B. and N. Burton, eds. A Testament to Freedom: The Essential Writings of Dietrich Bonhoeffer. San Francisco: HarperSanFrancisco, 1980.
Webber, Robert E. Ancient-Future Faith: Rethinking Evangelicalism for a Postmodern World. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Books, 1999.
Webber, Robert E. Who Gets to Narrate the World: Contending for the Christian Story in an Age of Rivals. Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press, 2008.
Wells, David F. Above All Earthly Powers: Christ in a Postmodern World. Grand Rapids, Mich.: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2005.
Wells, David F. God in the Wasteland: The Reality of Truth in a World of Fading Dreams. Grand Rapids, Mich.: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1994.
Wells, David F. Losing Our Virtue: Why the Church Must Recover Its Moral Vision. Grand Rapids, Mich.: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1998.
Wells, David F. No Place for Truth: Or Whatever Happened to Evangelical Theology?. Grand Rapids, Mich.: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1993.
The following are sources that I highly recommend (watch for frequent additions). This list in particular contains those sources that are especially helpful in working with the sacramental/incarnational character of the biblical witness (and is not meant to be an exhaustive list of those sources I think the best for biblical studies in general).
Achtemeier, Paul J. Inspiration and Authority: Nature and Function of Christian scripture, 2nd ed. Peabody, Mass.: Hendrickson Publishers, 2003.
Bright, John. The Authority of the Old Testament, 2nd ed. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Book House, 1975.
Brown, Raymond E. An Introduction to the New Testament. New York: Doubleday, 1997.
Brown, Raymond E. The Church the Apostles Left Behind. New York: Paulist Press, 1984.
Brueggemann, Walter. Theology of the Old Testament: Testimony, Dispute, Advocacy. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 1997.
Capon, R. F. Kingdom, Grace, and Judgment: Paradox, Outrage, and Vindication in the Parables of Jesus. Grand Rapids, Mich: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2002.
Card, Michael. A Fragile Stone: The Emotional Life of Simon Peter. Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press, 2003.
Drane, John. Introducing the New Testament, Revised ed. Minneapolis, Minn.: Fortress Press, 2001.
Drane, John. Introducing the Old Testament, Revised ed. Minneapolis, Minn: Fortress Press, 2001.
Fagerberg, David W. “Theologia Prima: The Liturgical Mystery and the Mystery of God.” Letter and Spirit 2 (2006): 55-68.
Hahn, Scott W. “The Authority of Mystery: The Biblical Theology of Benedict XVI.” Letter and Spirit 2 (2006): 97-140.
Healy, Mary. “Inspiration and Incarnation: The Christological Analogy and the Hermeneutics of Faith.” Letter and Spirit 2 (2006): 27-42.
Pelikan, Jaraslov. Whose Bible is It? A History of the Scriptures through the Ages. New York: Viking, 2005.
Reno, R. R. “Rebuilding the Bridge Between Theology and Exegesis: Scripture, Doctrine, and Apostolic Legitimacy.” Letter and Spirit 3 (2007): 153-168.
von Balthasar, Hans U. “The Word, Scripture, and Tradition.” Letter and Spirit 2 (2006): 189-202.
Wright, N.T. The Resurrection of the Son of God. Vol. 3 of Christian Origins and the Question of God. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2003.
Wright, N. T. Surprised by Hope: Rethinking Heaven, the Resurrection, and the Mission of the Church. New York: HarperOne, 2008.
Wright, N.T. Scripture and the Authority of God: How to Read the Bible Today. New York, New York: HarperOne, 2011.
The following are sources that I highly recommend (watch for frequent additions):
Borchert, Gerald L. Responding to Mystery: A Worship Introduction to the New Testament. Morristown, Tenn.: by the author, 2006.
Bradshaw, Paul F. “The Effects of the Coming of Christendom on Early Christian Worship.” In The Origins of Christendom in the West, ed. Alan Kreider, 269-86. New York: T&T Clark, 2001.
Bradshaw, Paul F. The Search for the Origins of Christian Worship: Sources and Methods for the Study of Early Liturgy. 2nd ed. New York: Oxford University Press, 2002.
Clapp, Rodney and Robert E. Webber. People of the Truth: The Power of the Worshiping Community in the Modern World. Eugene, Oregon: Wipf and Stock Publishers, 2001.
Fagerberg, David W. “Divine Liturgy, Divine Love: Toward a New Understanding of Sacrifice in Christian Worship.” Letter and Spirit 3 (2007): 95-112.
Guardini, Romano. The Spirit of the Liturgy. New York: The Crossroad Publishing Company, 1997.
Hurtado, Larry W. At the Origins of Christian Worship: the Context and Character of Earliest Christian Devotion. 2nd. ed. Grand Rapids, Mich.: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2000.
Mitchel, Leonel L. Praying Shapes Believing: A Theological Commentary on the Book of Common Prayer, Harrisburg, Penn.: Morehouse Publishing, 1985.
Pfatteicher, Philip H. Liturgical Spirituality. Valley Forge, Penn.: Trinity Press International, 1997.
Ratzinger, Joseph Cardinal. The Spirit of the Liturgy. San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2000.
Schmemann, Alexander. Introduction to Liturgical Theology. Crestwood, New York: St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press, 2003.
Talley, Thomas J. The Origins of the Liturgical Year. 2nd ed. Collegeville, Minn.: The Liturgical Press, 1986.
Webb-Mitchell, Brett P. Christly Gestures: Learning to Be Members of the Body of Christ. Grand Rapids, Mich.: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2003.
Webber, Robert E. Ancient-Future Time: Forming Spirituality through the Christian Year. Ancient-Future Faith Series. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Books, 2004.
Webber, Robert E. Worship: Journey Into His Presence. Mansfield, Penn.: Kingdom Publishing, 1999.
Weil, Louis. A Theology of Worship. The New Church’s Teaching Series, eds. Cynthia Shattuck and Vicki Black, vol. 12. Boston: Cowley Publications, 2002.
White, James F. A Brief History of Christian Worship. Nashville, Tenn.: Abingdon Press, 1993.
Wright, N. T. “Freedom and Framework, Spirit and Truth: Recovering Biblical Worship.” January 2002. http://www.ntwrightpage.com/Wright_Biblical_Worship.htm (12 March 2007).
The following are sources that I highly recommend (watch for frequent additions):
Benedict XVI. (2009). Charity in Truth. San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2009.
Benedict XVI. God is Love. San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2006.
Benedict XVI. (2008). Saved in Hope. San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2008.
Browning, Robert L. and Roy A. Reed. The Sacraments in Religious Education and Liturgy. Birmingham, Alabama: Religious Education Press, 1985.
Cooke, Bernard. Sacraments and Sacramentality, revised ed. Mystic, Conn.: Twenty-Third Publications, 1994.
Emminghaus, Johannes H. The Eucharist: Essence, Form, Celebration. Translated by Linda M. Maloney. Collegeville, Minn.: The Liturgical Press, 1978. Reprint with new translation, Collegeville, Minn.: The Liturgical Press, 1992.
Guroian, Vigen. Ethics after Christendom: Toward and Ecclesial Christian Ethic. Eugene, Oregon: Wipf and Stock Publishers, 1994.
Guroian, Vigen. Incarnate Love: Essays in Orthodox Ethics, 2nd ed. Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press, 2002.
Hay, Leo. Eucharist: A Thanksgiving Celebration. Message of the Sacraments, ed. Monika K. Hellwig. Wilmington, Delaware: Michael Glazier, Inc., 1989.
Irwin, Kevin W. Models of the Eucharist. New York: Paulist Press, 2005.
Jones, Chelsyn, Geoffrey Wainwright, and Edward Yarnold, eds. The Study of Spirituality. New York: Oxford University Press, 1986.
Koenig, John. The Feast of the World’s Redemption: Eucharistic Origins and Christian Mission. Harrisburg, Penn.: Trinity Press International, 2000.
LaVerdiere, Eugene. The Eucharist in the New Testament and the Early Church. Collegeville, Minn.: The Liturgical Press, 1996.
McIntosh, Mark A. Mysteries of Faith. The New Church’s Teaching Series, ed. Cynthia Shattuck, vol. 8. Boston: Cowley Publications, 2000.
McIntosh, Mark A. Mystical Theology: The Integrity of Spirituality and Theology. Challenges in Contemporary Theology. eds. Gareth Jones and Lewis Ayres. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing Ltd, 1998.
Nouwen, Henri J. M. With Burning Hearts: A Meditation on the Eucharistic Life. Maryknoll, New York: Orbis Books, 1994.
Old, Hughes Oliphant. The Shaping of the Reformed Baptismal Rite in the 16th Century. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1992.
Peterson, Eugene H. Christ plays in Ten Thousand Places: A Conversation with Spiritual Theology. Grand Rapids, Mich.: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2005.
Schmemann, Alexander. Church, World, Mission: Reflections on Orthodoxy in the West. Crestwood, New Jersey: St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press, 1979.
Schmemann, Alexander. For the Life of the World: Sacraments and Orthodoxy. Crestwood, NY: St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press, 1973.
Schmemann, Alexander. The Eucharist: Sacrament of the Kingdom. Crestwood, NY: St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press, 1987.
Schmemann, Alexander. The Journals of Father Alexander Schmemann 1973-1983. Translated by Juliana Schmemann. Crest wood, NY: St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press, 2002.
Schmemann, Alexander. Liturgy and Tradition: Theological Reflections of Alexander Schmemann. Edited by Thomas Fisch. Crestwood, New York: St. Vladimir’s Press, 2003.
Schmemann, Alexander. Of Water and the Spirit: A Liturgical Study of Baptism. Crestwood, NY: St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press, 1974.
Sheldrake, Philip. Explorations in Spirituality: History, Theology, and Social Practice. New York: Paulist Press, 2010.
Sheldrake, Philip. Spirituality and History: Questions of Interpretation and Method. Marynoll, New York: Orbis Books, 1995.
Sheldrake, Philip. Spirituality and Theology: Christian Living and the Doctrine of God. London: Darton, Longman and Todd, Ltd., 1998.
Staples, Rob L. Outward Sign and Inward Grace: The Place of Sacraments in Wesleyan Spirituality. Kansas City: Beacon Hill Press of Kansas City, 1991.
Stookey, Laurence Hull. Baptism: Christ’s Act in the Church. Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1982
Stookey, Laurence Hull. Eucharist: Christ’s Feast with the Church. Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1993.
Taft, Robert. “How Liturgies Grow: The Evolution of the Byzantine Divine Liturgy.” OCP 43 (1977) reproduced in his collected essays, Beyond East and West. 2nd ed., Rome, 1997, 203-4. Quoted in Bradshaw, Paul F. The Search for the Origins of Christian Worship: Sources and Methods for the Study of Early Liturgy. 2nd ed. New York: Oxford University Press, 2002.
Vander Zee, Leonard J. Christ, Baptism and the Lord’s Supper. Downers Grove, Illinois: InterVarsity Press, 2004.
Webber, Robert E. The Divine Embrace: Rediscovering the Passionate Spiritual Life. Ancient-Future Faith Series. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Books, 2006.
Wright, David F. “Augustine and the Transformation of Baptism.” In The Origins of Christendom in the West, ed. Alan Kreider, 287-310. New York: T&T Clark, 2001.