Preaching Apocalyptic Texts: Year A

Resources for Pastors Who Want to "Preach in the New Creation"

A Sampling of Apocalyptic Lections and Texts with Apocalyptic Motifs in the
Revised Common Lectionary: Year A


Advent 1 A and Proper 18 A
Romans 13:8-14

Epiphany 4 A, Tuesday in Holy Week A, and Holy Cross Day
1 Corinthians 1:18-25

All Saints Day A
Revelation 7:9-17

Sunday, October 16-22
1 Thessalonians 1:1-10

In addition, the following upcoming lectionary helps can be found in Preaching in the New Creation:

  • New Year's Day (January 1)
    Revelation 21:1-6a (pp. 112-115)
  • Easter A
    Matt 28:1-10 (pp. 109-112)
  • Sunday, July 17-23 and/or Sunday, July 24-30 Year A
    Romans 8:18-30 (pp. 95-104 and 134-137)
  • Sunday, November 6-12 and/or Sunday, November 13-19 Year A
    1 Thess 4:13-5:11 (pp. 106-109)

    as well as other apocalyptic lectionary texts in the three-year RCL cycle

Personal Background

The topic of preaching with apocalyptic texts has fascinated me ever since my stint as a parish pastor at First United Methodist Church in Pierre, SD in the late 1980s. Like most preachers, I was frustrated with these troublesome texts. Some apocalyptic texts were violent, others were outlandish, nearly all of them seemed difficult to preach. Being for the most part a lectionary preacher, however, I really wanted to wrestle with them. After a while, I came to the conclusion that my own hermeneutic was part of the problem. After all, Biblical scholars and church leaders throughout the world (see below) viewed these texts not solely as troublesome, but liberating. On the basis of this way of looking at apocalyptic texts, I tried to reread them. It began with a series of articles in Biblical Preaching Journal in the early 1990s and culminated in my book, Preaching in the New Creation: The Promise of New Testament Apocalyptic Texts (Louisville: Westminster John Knox, 1999). The book, the lectionary preaching helps below, and the preaching apocalyptic texts archive are provided to stimulate your interest in these texts. If they succeed, they may aid you in "preaching in the new creation."

For further reading in liberation hermeneutics of apocalyptic texts, see:

  • Boesak, Allan A. Comfort and Protest: The Apocalypse from a South African Perspective. Philadelphia: Westminster, 1987.
  • Schüssler Fiorenza, Elisabeth. Revelation: Vision of a Just World. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 1991.
  • Richard, Pablo. Apocalypse: A People's Commentary on the Book of Revelation. Maryknoll, NY: Orbis, 1995.

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Last Updated: 16 March, 2011
© copyright 1999-2011, David Schnasa Jacobsen and Waterloo Lutheran Seminary