Sermons from 2017

Sermons from 2017

wheat field

Working Among Us, Now

A little background is necessary before I share this morning’s New Testament lesson, on this Stewardship Dedication Sunday. Context is crucial for understanding- and understanding leads to faithful action. This brief portion of Paul’s first letter to Christians in Thessalonica is more significant than you know. It was a first, in many ways. Written just twenty years after Jesus’ death and resurrection, around 50 A.D., this is the first of Paul’s letters. As such, this is also the earliest ‘book’…

Jesus our Brother

Jesus left that place and came to his hometown, and his disciples followed him. On the Sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were astounded. They said, “Where did this man get all this? What is this wisdom that has been given to him? What deeds of power are being done by his hands! Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon, and are…
sunset

Saved by Grace Alone

“You were dead through the trespasses and sins in which you once lived, following the course of this world, following the ruler of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work among those who are disobedient. All of us once lived among them in the passions of our flesh, following the desires of flesh and senses, and we were by nature children of wrath, like everyone else. But God, who is rich in mercy, out of…
Silhouette of person leaping a chasm

Saved by Faith Alone

But now, apart from law, the righteousness of God has been disclosed, and is attested by the law and the prophets, the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction, since all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God; they are now justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a sacrifice of atonement by his…
World Communion contemporary painting

An Anthem Worth Living For

Philippians 2:1-13 (NRSV) Imitating Christ’s Humility 2 If then there is any encouragement in Christ, any consolation from love, any sharing in the Spirit, any compassion and sympathy, 2 make my joy complete: be of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. 3 Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility regard others as better than yourselves. 4 Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to…
contemporary cross painting

To Live is_____. To do is _____.

I want you to know, beloved that what has happened to me has actually helped to spread the gospel, so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard and to everyone else that my imprisonment is for Christ; and most of the brothers and sisters, having been made confident in the Lord by my imprisonment, dare to speak the word with greater boldness and without fear. for I know that through your prayers and the help of the Spirit of Jesus…
praying hands

Operating Instructions for Life

“The saying is sure and worthy of full acceptance.  For to this end we toil and struggle, because we have our hope set on the living God, who is the Savior of all people, especially of those who believe.  These are the things you must insist on and teach. Let no one despise your youth, but set the believers an example in speech and conduct, in love, in faith, in purity. Until I arrive, give attention to the public reading of…

On Our Side, By Our Side, God’s Peace Inside

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change, though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea; though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble with its tumult. There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy habitation of the Most High. God is in the midst of the city; it shall not be moved; God will help…
Loaves & Fishes

Digging Deep When it Counts

    Now when Jesus heard this, [of the beheading of John the Baptist], he withdrew from there in a boat to a deserted place by himself. But when the crowds heard it, they followed him on foot from the towns. When he went ashore, he saw a great crowd; and he had compassion for them and cured their sick. When it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a deserted place, and the hour is…

Songs in the Key of Life

(with acknowledgments to Stevie Wonder) The earth is the Lord’s and all that is in it, the world, and those who live in it; for he has founded it on the seas, and established it on the rivers. Who shall ascend the hill of the Lord? And who shall stand in his holy place? Those who have clean hands and pure hearts, who do not lift up their souls to what is false, and do not swear deceitfully. They will…