Commentaries Written by Scott Hoezee

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Ruth 1:1-18 Sermon Commentary

Proper 26B

To my mind stopping the reading of Ruth 1 at verse 18 is the narrative equivalent of ending the movie Field of Dreams just before the moment when Ray encounters his long-dead and estranged father on his magical Iowa baseball diamond.  Why stop short of the scene that brings the whole thing together!? So trust…

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Psalm 119:1-8 Sermon Commentary

Proper 26B

In the world of secular music, I would guess you would be hard pressed to find many songs with titles like “I Just Love Rules!”  In fact the website Ranker provided their top list of songs with the word “law” in the title but songs of the variety “I’m Lovin’ the Law” don’t seem to…

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Psalm 126 Sermon Commentary

Proper 25B

Some of us might remember that another version/translation of Psalm 126:1 mentions specifically the time when “the captives” were brought back to Jerusalem.  That framing of this psalm places this on the far side of the seventy-year exile in Babylon as the people of Israel slowly returned from captivity after Persia conquered Babylon and the…

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Job 42:1-6, 10-17 Sermon Commentary

Proper 25B

And they lived happily ever after . . .  Really?  Is it really possible that the Bible’s most troubled (and at times most torturous) book has the proverbial “happy ending”?  Did Disney take over this project at some point?!  At first glance you might think so. Job replies to God that in the wake of…

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Job 38:1-7, 34-41 Sermon Commentary

Proper 24B

Why did this happen?  Why didn’t God prevent this?  “Pastor, why did this happen?  “Pastor, where is God?” A child dies, a good person is killed, a freak accident takes the life of someone who was unspeakably precious to us, and we are left to wonder why. And if we’re honest as pastors, we just…

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Psalm 91:9-16 Sermon Commentary

Proper 24B

For some reason on this occasion the Lectionary would have us skip the first 8 verses of Psalm 91, which is too bad in that those verses contain one of the most lyric images of God’s providential care of us in the whole Bible.  We are the baby birds who find shelter under the wings…

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Job 23:1-9, 16-17 Sermon Commentary

Proper 23B

If you read the John Grisham novel The Firm, you may recall the horrifying moment when a young lawyer and his wife discover that the house so “generously” provided to them by the young man’s law firm is bugged to the hilt.  Every conversation they had had, every lovemaking sigh, every TV show they had…

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Psalm 90:12-17 Sermon Commentary

Proper 23B

The middle section of Psalm 90 – omitted by this week’s lection in the RCL – deals with the wrath of God, and that is probably why the Lectionary averts its eyes from that part on every occasion when Psalm 90 pops up in the Lectionary.  Yet it is a key part of what is…

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Job 1:1, 2:1-10 Sermon Commentary

Proper 22B

Comments, Observations, and Questions As most everyone knows, the Book of Job is essentially one long disquisition on the age-old question of theodicy: Why does a good God let bad things happen to good people?  The conversations that take place around this question eat up the bulk of this book until finally God comes on…

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Psalm 8 Sermon Commentary

Proper 22B

Comments, Observations, and Questions The Lectionary usually reserves Psalm 8 for Trinity Sunday as it is assigned for that day in both Year A and Year C of the RCL. Oddly, it is not a cinch to see how Psalm 8 fits a Trinitarian theme but since in Year B we are getting this psalm…

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