Fr. James' Lectionary

The Lectionary is both a reading program for completing all of Holy Scripture on a one year schedule, and a daily comment on a portion of the day's reading wedded to a poem to give an added perspective on the theme.

Location: Amherst, Virginia, United States

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Better Than a Map: Bible Comment on I Chronicles 1 with poem by Madeleine L'Engle, Charlotte Rebecca Jones, 22nd August, 1969

Daily Readings
Psalm 52, I Samuel 22, I Chronicles 1:1-2:2, Romans 10

Daily Text: I Chronicles 1:1-2:2

Better Than a Map
The genealogies are spare, but in terms of great genealogies of world literature, I Chronicles 1 is one of the finest. The chronicler makes no attempt to highlight any person,Adam, Noah, Abram, Ishmael, Isaac or Israel. Their names are given without comment. The author moves deftly to set not only the sons of Israel before us, but also to define their relationship with each of the nations of then known world from the Table of Nations in Genesis 10. This is a compact and telling recital, perhaps better than a map for defining relational bloodlines and a geographical image of the world (cf. Knoppers 515:294).

Charlotte Rebecca Jones,
22nd August, 1969
Madeleine L’Engle

When the time comes it is always unexpected
And amiracle. Charlotte,
Caught in the violence of creation,
Thrust into life, disconnected
From her bearer, arrived, scarlet,
Shouting. There is no explanation

For the tearing violence of a birth.
The Lord himself, when the Word first was spoken,
Took fistfuls of formless chaos, wrested
Sky, sea, and our familiar earth
From naught. So nothingness by Love was broken
And it was good. And then God rested.

He calls his creatures each to take his part
In this great cosmic heave of love and birth,
Sharing the mighty act of his creation.
We understand this only with the heart,
With pain and joy and pure celestial mirth.
The miracle of Charlotte needs no explanation.


Collect for the Day
God of the oppressed, we pray for all those who suffer injustice at the hands of cruel and indifferent rulers, especially for the innocent victims of war. Give them strength and patience, and hasten the day when the kingdoms of this world will own the perfect law of love, made known to us in Jesus Christ our Lord.

[476:772:52 Psalm prayer]


Post a Comment

<< Home