The Genesis reading takes us into the “Jacob Cycle” with the story of the twins, Jacob and Esau (Gen 25:19-34). Themes of miraculous births, younger sons usurping older sons, and duelling nations continue. Theologically, these passages affirm that God chooses the frail, sinful, and broken to receive God’s promises and partner in God’s mission, a theme that continues in Romans 8:1-11. We also discuss the parable of the sower/seeds in Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23 – a passage that speaks about the abundance and reckless generosity of God.
We refer to Terry Eagleton’s Reason, Faith, and Revolution, Beverley Gaventa’s When in Romans, Brendan Byrne’s Romans Commentary, Warren Carter’s Matthew Commentary, Ben Myers’ Ten Rules for Preaching Parables, and Bill Loader’s Lectionary page.