(In The Life Of The Church)
Bible Madness Is Here (Rounds 1 & 2)
Before we give viewers 1st and 2nd round results we'd like make a few observations. To no ones surprise the top overall seeds went to the gospels with Matthew and his prominent position in the canon and productive season (lectionary calendar Year A) securing the #1 overall seed.
Probably the biggest scandal of the tournament is 1st Thessalonians 16 seed, all but guaranteeing a 1st round loss to Matthew. Inside sources tell us committee members leaked the following quote, "one of the two things is true. Either we forgot about 1 Thessalonians when we were almost done making the brackets and didn't want to start over or the book was penalized for using the Greek word harpagEsometha which is often translated "rapture" thus making 1 Thessalonians responsible for dispensationalism and the Scofield Bible." Truett's Todd Still is leading the outrage calling this "criminal!"
The other shocking story was the first ever appearance of a Apocryphal book in the tournament after 1 Maccabees beat out 3rd John in a play in game for the 12 seed in the Rome Division. When committee members were questioned about this, they asked the media to tell them one verse from 3rd John they memorized as kids. After the room was silent the conversation moved on. The other play in game was for the 16 seed in the Carthage Division between 1 & 2 Chronicles. When asked why the pair were pitted against each other the committee responded by asking if the media had read 1 & 2 Kings. When they replied yes, the committee argued that they'd heard all that before.
Other scrutiny was delivered on the seeding of the Jerusalem Division. Some fear that 2 seeded Psalms represent the best chance for the Hebrew Bible to win a national championship. But the Psalms will tango in a division that includes a 4 seeded Philippians team, 3 seeded Jeremiah squad and as has been noted already, overall number 1 seed Matthew, leaving some to speculate that this potential elite 8 matchup might be the real national championship. Detractors say that John and Romans will have something to say about that.
Things were wild in the West! 12 seeded Apocryphal representative 1st Maccabees began their Cinderella quest when they stunned 1st Corinthians. The lesson here, be careful what you do with your mother-in-law. Look for a possible another win for 1 Mac because they'll face a 13 seeded Titus who beat what some have called an over rated 1 Samuel team. Mark put on a clinic crushing Haggai and Pentateuch titans Genesis and Deuteronomy cruised as well sending minor prophets Micah and Zechariah home early. Jonah prevailed in a slug fest with 1 Timothy, but ultimately won because of it's prominence in children's bibles. Joshua upset Ephesians probably for 2 reasons. 1. He shares a name with the author of this article about bible bracketology and 2. Ephesians is disputed. Speak the truth in love unless you are messing with a conquest narrative. The Rome Division's most interesting first round matchup was predictably it's 8/9 game. In what some have called the battle over feminism, Ezra said "divorce your foreign wives" and Esther said, "or deliver a nation."
Well feed me a pig and call me Antiochus Epiphanies, 1 Maccabees is dancing! That will likely come to an end next week when they take on Mark's fast pace, high octane kai enthuse offense that coach Paul Westhead loves to use. Mark got tangled up for a second by Esther's patriarchal accusations, but then retorted, "who showed up at the tomb first? Mic drop."
Rome's other Sweet Sixteen matchup will feature Joshua whose conquest continued past Deuteronomy. A cocky Joshua said, "it looks like one of us really did get to the promise land, hashtag strong and courageous." Genesis toyed with 7 seeded Jonah, but then pulled it's starting primeval eleven after a substantial first half lead.
The southwest will be the long forgotten quadrant of early Christianity no more! 11 seeded 2 Samuel crushed Daniel with it's Zionistic and Davidic promises. 2 Peter upset Acts leaving Robert Wall to complain "we now have no clear connection to the gospels and Paul!" 2 Corinthians veiled the faces of 2 Kings and Isaiah put in the 3rd string suffering servant early to finish crushing 2 Thessalonians. Exodus left the building in glowing fashion after cruising past Malachi. Philemon handled 1st Kings leaving many to wonder just how good Deuteronomistic History Conference really is. Joel gave Job his best shot, but then the whirlwind showed up in the fourth quarter. John employed many double entendres, but then in a rare moment of straight talk literally beat down 1 Chronicles. After the game Ray Brown was asked about his team's performance and he said, "one word, Logos." Starting point guard Nicodemus still looked confused.
The 2 Corinthians/Exodus matchup proved to be one of the better 2/7 games we've seen. Both teams put their best Moses foot forward. In the end the Ten Commandments proved to be too much. When 2 Corinthians started chattering about being a new creation, Exodus painted blood on her doorpost. Game over. 2 Peter's senseless luck came to an abrupt end. Bildad heated up from beyond the Arc and Job cruised. In the beginning John put on a clinic and never looked back. David did his best, but his sin caught up with him this time. Isaiah simply flipped open to the infancy narratives and asked 2 Samuel to find his quotes. This sets up an exciting 2/3 matchup between Exodus and Isaiah pitting perennial power 5 conferences Major Prophets and Pentateuch against each other.
One might have thought that being slighted would prove to be the fuel needed for 1 Thessalonians to do something special, but that wouldn't be the case tonight. Matthew didn't even need to call on his wisemen before the game was over. Longtime veteran coach Ulrich Lutz had this to say after the game, "This program is playing well right now. I feel like we are the face of Jesus." Judges and 1 John brought their antithetical styles to the court. Judges Wild West tribal confederacy was highlighted by Samson's new haircut which almost brought the house down, but 1 John's love proved too much. Song of Songs lost decisively to 12 seeded Habakuk in a rare first round Minor Prophet conference victory. Some speculate that the Song of Songs got a high seed because of the early church's allegorical reading, but was eventually weakened by both John Eldredge and True Love Waits. That and the new perspective on Paul's careful attention to Habakkuk 2:4 led some to believe that there's something more to this sparky bunch. Philippians replaced the national anthem with the Christ hymn and the game was over before it started. Jeremiah cruised past Obadiah. James worked hard enough to shock Revelation. A big Johannine loss. This bad break for coach Tim LaHaye could be the straw that breaks the camel's back, especially after he promised that the beast would come out of Russia. Oops there's 1 Thessalonians ... hmmm ... makes me wonder which other book got left out. O well, Numbers won as did Psalms.
Matthew vs 1 John proved to be a potential Matthean/Johannine preview. John will have to bring more than love to win that game. Habakkuk 2:4, a one trick pony, brought it's minor prophet winning spree to an end in an easy win for Philippians who can do all things through Christ who gives them the strength. James continued to work hard stunning Jeremiah who looked everything, but major. The Psalms beat Numbers at it's own game, simply flipping to 119 and wearing the Penteteuch hopeful down through shear attrition.
What should we say of the Alexandria Division. This is SEC country. Luke plodded along like an Ox all season grinding out win after win moving all the way to Jerusalem and now through Alexandria. Nahum was nothing. Nehemiah part of a reformed movement that couldn't wall off the efforts Leviticus and the all-American play of the Holiness Code. In a battle of Evangelical darlings, Proverbs took on Hebrews. Between the Desiring God and Precious Moments fan bases, there wasn't a seat available in the house. Proverbs proved to be the straw man that Ecclesiastes said it was folding to the high priest from the line of Melchizedek. Even though God sang over Zephaniah that wasn't enough to overcome Ezekiel and his dry bones. Francine Rivers fans were sad to see Hosea eliminated so easily by Galatians, but ladies do not despair. Time to call your mother-in-law because in a tournament of storied 11 seeds, Ruth just upset Colossians. Amos let it rain and the rivers flow as he plumbed Catholic hopeful 1 Peter, and the Romans Road to the final four is looking strong as they steamrolled Jude.
The Prodigal Son returned to the sweet sixteen as Leviticus got hung up on the technicalities of the reffing. The supremacy of Jesus was put back on display as Hebrews blew past Ezekiel. Galatians come out of Romans' shadow trouncing Ruth only to step back into it as Romans trounced Amos in a matchup of unbalanced teams. Coach Tom Wright had this to say after the game, "This team is for real. I feel like we've been misunderstood for 2,000 years, but not anymore. What coach Sanders and Coach Dunn did before me is incredible. Now it's all about having a new perspective and these kids got it."
Tune in next week for 3rd and 4th round action as we inch our way to the final four books of the Bible.
Meet Our Newest Leadership Team Member
What are you doing in Waco?: I am the environmental science teacher at Lake Air Montessori Magnet.
What is your fav TV Show/Movie?: My favorite (recent) tv show is the Walking Dead. My favorite movie is Interstellar.
Book You’ve Really Enjoyed?: I recently read The Invention of Nature by Andrea Wulf. It's a biography about Alexander von Humboldt, a famous (and mostly forgotten) naturalist that was the inspiration for many of our modern scientists and nature writers like Darwin, Thoreau, and Muir.
Best Restaurant in Waco?: I've been enjoying Moroso a lot, lately.
A Bible Verse/Chapter/Book that has been formative for you?:
Romans 8:38-39: For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. I often struggle with doubt and question what I believe (not inherently bad), but this verse has helped me a number of times.
Something we might not know about you?: I am an avid birder and on any given Saturday you can find me at the wetlands or at the lake for hours on end.
Middle Ages Lunch After Church
The Middle Ages will be getting together for Hippodrome Brunch after church Sunday (March 19). The Hippodrome is at 724 Austin ave. If you have any questions email Jeff @ Jeff_Walter@baylor.edu.
The young professionals of UBC will gather for an extravaganza at Jameson McGregor's house on 3-25. It will be a night filled outdoor festivities so pray against the rain ... at least over on the Live Oak Ave. area. Interested persons who would like more information should email firstname.lastname@example.org.
UBC Spring Retreat (Freshman/Sophomores only)
Spring is in the air, and I know you want to go to the lake. We are going to do an overnight retreat at a lake house in Malakoff, TX, April 7th-8th. The cost is $20: that will cover meals, lodging, and a shirt. The retreat has limited space, so it will be for the first 20 people who sign-up, and pay their deposit. We only have a handful of spots left, so make sure to sign-up. Sign-ups will continue this week, after church. If you have any questions, please email email@example.com
Lent at the Hippodrome
Can't get enough of Lent? Still haven't fully connected with your sinfulness? Could you use another does of good old fashion ash poured over you head? Come hear a series of talks on Lenten themes in the form of story at the Hippodrome on Wednesdays.
Work is Worship
Greeters: Will & Richardsons
Coffee Makers: Emmy & Stephen
Mug Cleaners: Cooleys
Money Counter: Anna Tilson
- Sunday Sermon: John 4ish "some sermon title i decide on later this week"
- April 2-- UBC Families @ Soccer Fields -- More Info to Come
- April 7th and 8th - Spring Retreat (Freshman/Sophomores)
- April 13th - Maundy Thursday
- April 14th - Good Friday
- April 16th - Easter
- April 22--The Middle Ages Baylor Theatre production of the comedy NOISES OFF—
- April 30th - Mr. Rogers Sunday
- April 30th - Graduate Luncheon
- May 2nd - Study Hall
- May 5th - Rend Collective @ UBC
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