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Year A, Easter 4, 2017 – Not Baaaaaaaad

May 2, 2017 / D2 / Easter

Greetings!! It’s Good Shepherd Sunday this week, the traditional theme for the 4th Sunday of Eastertide. It is a little more subtle, maybe, in Year A than some other years, but we still find Jesus as the one who protects, leads, and nurtures his flock. The Acts 2 passage shows us how the flock flourishes when properly nourished. The 1 Peter 2 passage calls us to follow Jesus the Shepherd, even into suffering (it turned out okay for him, so it will turn out okay for us). Then the John 10 passage gives us two sheepy parables that drive at Jesus’ promise, “I have come that they may have life and have it abundantly.” That doesn’t sound too baaaaad at all.

This week’s texts are:

Acts 2:42-47 [01:59]

Here are the details!! This is the end of the chapter but certainly not the end of the effect of the Holy Spirit coming to the disciples on Pentecost. The rest of the book of Acts chronicles the new movement and we get just a glimpse of how it may have looked with these five verses. For EYE smart, we wonder just how large a facility one might need to have all three thousand plus people gathered to participate in worship, fellowship, Bible study, and a meal. We have an idea for a special effect that also has PEOPLE smart applications. For MATH smart, do you have any event planners or logistics specialists in your congregation? They might have a lot of insight about accommodating large groups. We found some fun ideas in MUSIC smart based on commentary that suggests Pentecost is a remix of Old Testament promises. We have a link with an example. The four marks of the church are much like nourishment; we have some ideas to engage NATURE smart people with plants or puppies.  

  • Smarts – Eye [03:16], Math [06:05], Music [07:44], Nature [09:24], People [05:10]
  • Acts 2 worksheet
  • Links in Acts 2


1 Peter 2:19-25 [10:57]

The reading from 1 Peter begins with the author telling readers that they have credit assessed to them for their suffering. We begin with MATH smart and suggest looking at accounting principles for insight to credit and debit. For BODY smart, we follow the author’s suggestion about following Jesus’ path by engaging in some literal following in footsteps. And in SELF smart, we encourage some self reflection about the suffering referenced in the passage. 


John 10:1-10 [19:25]

We begin with WORD smart and a link to a poem about poetry. The Fourth Gospel is crafted with great care to its language and this near parable is no exception. For EYE smart, picture places that have gates at entrances. In MATH smart, we examine why the people listening to Jesus talk about gates and sheepfolds were not quite getting it. We have a video clip below for NATURE smart that shows us the reality of sheep paying attention to the voice of their shepherd. In PEOPLE smart, we wonder what voices we pay attention to and why. And finally, in SELF smart, we ask if you have ever had your house broken into and if so, how did that effect you? 

  • Smarts – Word [21:03], Eye [22:44], Math [24:02], Nature [25:37], People [26:26], Self [29:17]
  • John 10 worksheet
  • Links in John 10
    • Billy Collins poem about poetry and interpretation
    • See sheep ignoring people who aren’t the shepherd


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