Beyond the Lectionary

The Revised Common Lectionary covers a welter of texts throughout Scripture across its three-year cycle. Inevitably, however, there are gaps even as there a few important stories and other passages that never crop up. Featured here are sermon starter articles to jump-start the preacher’s imagination on a number of excellent Scripture passages that go beyond the texts included in the Lectionary. These articles by a number of experienced preachers feature fresh angles on the texts, curious questions to ask about the texts, and illustration ideas designed to make the passages vivid in a contemporary setting.

Reference Description Author
Genesis 27 Jacob Deceives Isaac Randy Blacketer
Exodus 6:1-12 Ten Plagues and Exodus Proper - God Promises Deliverance Randy Blacketer
Leviticus 25 The Year of Jubilee Randy Blacketer
Matthew 1:1-17 The Genealogy of Jesus Randy Blacketer
Acts 27:13-44 Paul's Shipwreck Randy Blacketer
2 Corinthians 11 False Prophets Randy Blacketer
1 Timothy 4 Pastoral Leadership in an Age of Apostasy Randy Blacketer
2 John Love and Truth Randy Blacketer
Genesis 16:1-6 Hagar and Ishmael Lora Copley
Exodus 15:22-27 Healing of the Water at Marah Lora Copley
2 Kings 6 Eyes Open to the Chariots and the Meal Lora Copley
2 Chronicles 20:1-30 Jehoshaphat and the Song Service Battle Lora Copley
Ecclesiastes 3:1-11 Time Lora Copley
Matthew 6:5-15 Jesus Teaches About Prayer Lora Copley
Matthew 15:29-39 Jesus Feeds Four Thousand Lora Copley
Mark 4:1-20 Parable of the Sower and Explanation Lora Copley
John 4:46-54 Jesus Heals a Royal Official's Son Lora Copley
1 Peter 4:1-11 Living for God Lora Copley
Genesis 4:1-14 The Story of Cain and Abel Heidi De Jonge
Genesis 45 Joseph Reveals His Identity Heidi De Jonge
Numbers 13 The Spies Sent Out Heidi De Jonge
Judges 13:1-16 The Story of Samson Heidi De Jonge
Hosea 4 The Suffering of the Land Due to Sin Heidi De Jonge
John 8:12-20 Jesus is the Light of the World Heidi De Jonge
Galatians 2:1-14 Paul Accepted by the Apostles Heidi De Jonge
1 Peter 3:1-12 Submissions and Sufferings Heidi De Jonge
Revelation 19:1-10 Hallelujah! Heidi De Jonge
Genesis 13:1-18 Abram Separates From Lot Chelsey Harmon
Genesis 38 Judah and Tamar Chelsey Harmon
Genesis 48:1-22 Jacob Blesses Joseph's Sons Chelsey Harmon
Exodus 15:22-27 The New Jerusalem Chelsey Harmon
Numbers 14 Moses Intercedes to the Lord For Israel Chelsey Harmon
Ruth 2 Gleaning in the Field of Boaz Chelsey Harmon
Habakkuk 3 The Prayer, the Final Vision Chelsey Harmon
John 3:22-36 John's Testimony About Jesus Chelsey Harmon
John 8:48-59 Jesus declares that he is eternal Chelsey Harmon
Romans 3 God's Faithfulness Chelsey Harmon
Galatians 3:1-14 Faith or Observance of the Law Chelsey Harmon
Titus 1 Self-Control and Confrontations Chelsey Harmon
2 Peter 2 False Teachers and Their Destruction Chelsey Harmon
1 John 2 Loving the World, Anti-Christs Chelsey Harmon
Jude Contend for the Faith Chelsey Harmon
Revelation 20:1-6 The Thousand Years Chelsey Harmon
Revelation 21:1-27 The New Jerusalem Chelsey Harmon
Reflections on Psalms 15-24 Scott Hoezee
Genesis 14:1-24 Abraham and Melchizedek Marc Nelesen
Genesis 42 Jacob, Joseph & Brothers in Egypt Marc Nelesen
Judges 6:(1-10), 11-32, (33-40) The Call of Gideon and the Fleece Marc Nelesen
Matthew 15:1-20 Clean and Unclean Marc Nelesen
Luke 1:5-25 The Angel Gabriel Promises the Birth of John to Zechariah Marc Nelesen
Revelation 12:1-17 The Woman and the Dragon Marc Nelesen
Genesis 39:1-23 Joseph and Potiphar's Wife Sam Perry
Exodus 5:1-9 Moses and the Stubborn Pharaoh Sam Perry
Joshua 4:1-24 The Israelites Cross the Jordan Sam Perry
Nehemiah 1:1 – 2:6 Nehemiah's Prayer Sam Perry
Matthew 11:7-19 Jesus Teaches About John the Baptist Sam Perry
2 Corinthians 2:12-3:6 Ministers of the New Covenant Sam Perry
Hebrews 3 Warning Against Unbelief Sam Perry
Revelation 2 & 3 Seven Letters Sam Perry
Genesis 41:1-40 Pharaoh's Dreams Kory Plockmeyer
Exodus 40 Glory to Tabernacle Kory Plockmeyer
Judges 4 Deborah and Barak Kory Plockmeyer
1 Samuel 9 Anointing of Saul Kory Plockmeyer
Ezekiel 1 A Vision of Living Creatures Kory Plockmeyer
Matthew 9:27-34 Jesus Heals Two Blind Men Kory Plockmeyer
2 Corinthians 10 Paul's Defense of his Ministry Kory Plockmeyer
Hebrews 7:1-22 Jesus like Melchizedek Kory Plockmeyer
1 John 4:1-6 Test the Spirits Kory Plockmeyer
Revelation 5:1-10 The Scroll and the Lamb Kory Plockmeyer
Genesis 19:1-29 Destruction of Sodom & Gommorah Al Postma
Acts 15:1-21 The Council at Jerusalem Al Postma
Acts 28:17-31 Paul Preaches at Rome Under Guard Al Postma
Exodus 5 Ten Plagues and Exodus Proper - Bricks Without Straw Joel Schreurs
Daniel 1 Story of Daniel, Nebuchadnezzar's Dreams, Shadrach, et al, Lion’s Den Joel Schreurs
Jonah 1-4 Jonah's call, flight, whale Joel Schreurs
Mark 8:1-13 Jesus feeds four thousand Joel Schreurs
James 1:1-18 Trials and Tribulations Joel Schreurs
Genesis 40:1-23 The Cupbearer and the Baker Mary Stegink
Exodus 7:1-7 God hardens Pharaoh's heart Mary Stegink
Joshua 6 The Walls of Jericho Fall Mary Stegink
Nehemiah 8:1-12 Ezra Reads the Law Mary Stegink
Matthew 13:10-17 Jesus Explains Why He Speaks in Parables Mary Stegink
2 Corinthians 7 Paul's Joy Mary Stegink
Hebrews 6:1-12 Maturity in Faith Mary Stegink
Revelation 4 The Throne in Heaven Mary Stegink
Genesis 27 Jacob deceives Isaac Erin M. Stout
Genesis 50:15-26 Joseph's Last Words and Death Erin M. Stout
Exodus 2:11-25 Moses Murders the Egyptian and Flees but God Hears the Cry of His People Erin M. Stout
Numbers 16 The rebellion of Korah, Dathan and Abiran Erin M. Stout
Joshua 1 Joshua Urges the People to be Strong and Courageous Erin M. Stout
2 Samuel 15:1-22 Absalom's Conspiracy Erin M. Stout
1 Timothy 3 Leaders in the Church Erin M. Stout
Genesis 33 Jacob Meets Esau Bill Sytsma
Exodus 11:1-10 Ten Plagues and Exodus Proper - the Plague on the Firstborn Bill Sytsma
Deuteronomy 30:11-20 Choose Life Bill Sytsma
2 Samuel 13:1-22 Amnon and Tamar Bill Sytsma
Malachi 4 Day of the Lord Bill Sytsma
Acts 20:7-38 Eutychus Raised from the Dead at Troas Bill Sytsma
Galatians 5:1-15 Freedom in Christ Bill Sytsma
1 Timothy 5 Advice on Various Groups Bill Sytsma
3 John Bill Sytsma
Revelation 22:7-21 Jesus is Coming Bill Sytsma