1. Dreams and schemes (Gen. 37.3-8, 17b-22, 26-34; 50.15-21; Luke 6.35) [sermon 09-25-2016]

    Leave a comment

    September 22, 2016 by jmar198013

    the_recognition_of_joseph_by_his_brothers-large

    Joseph had big dreams. His brothers had twisted schemes. But God had dreams and schemes of his own.

  2. God’s faithfulness, and Abram’s (Gen. 15.1-6) [Sermon 09-18-2016]

    4

    September 16, 2016 by jmar198013

    1280px-van_gogh_-_starry_night_-_google_art_project

    Whenever the faithful question or protest or demand answers from God, they are actually demonstrating great faith. They’re calling on God to be faithful to his own word. To be the God they already know he is: truthful, loving, just, and merciful. That’s what Abram was doing in our lesson today.

  3. God’s faithfulness from the beginning (Genesis 2.4b-7, 15-17; 3.1-8) [Sermon 09-11-2016]

    3

    September 8, 2016 by jmar198013

    faithfulness-of-god-001

    God placed the human “in the garden to farm it and to take care of it.” On the surface, it sounds like he put humans on the earth to farm and garden. To till the soil, to prune, to dig irrigation ditches and the like. This is true. But the truth runs far deeper. The root meaning of those two verbs is to serve and to protect; or to serve and to preserve. Back in Gen. 1.26, 28, God said: “Let us make humanity in our image to resemble us so that they may take charge”; and he instructed humanity to: “Be fertile and multiply; fill the earth and master it.” Our relationship to the earth and the other creatures is a major part of what it means to be made in God’s image and likeness. God created humans to master the earth and take charge of the other creatures. But Gen. 2.15 reveals a more essential aspect to God’s image in us: we’re only faithfully mastering and taking charge when we are serving and protecting the rest of creation. God’s sovereign rule is also about serving and protecting, serving and preserving. That’s why Jesus—who is the image of God for us—said that he “didn’t come to be served but rather to serve and to give his life to liberate many people” (Mark 10.45). God is the master, and God is in charge. But in Jesus’ life and death, we learn that God uses his sovereign freedom to serve us and protect us; to serve us and provide for us; to serve us and set us free. This is what God had in mind for humans when he formed us from the earth. God wanted us to be here for the rest of creation, as he is here with us and for us.

  4. Don’t lead us into temptation (Luke 11.4c) [Sermon 09-04-2016]

    Leave a comment

    September 1, 2016 by jmar198013

    Sermon on the Mount

    One of the passages Jesus drew upon when the devil tempted him was Deut. 6.16: “Don’t test the LORD your God the way you frustrated him at Massah.” This refers back to an event that happened in Exodus 17. The people came to a place where there was no water, and were afraid God had left them to die of thirst. They lost faith in God, and were about ready to kill Moses. Testing God means refusing to trust that our Father is good and generous and just, and at work in our lives and in his world. It means giving up on God and going our own way. If Jesus had succumbed to any of the devil’s temptations: turned the stones to bread; enforced his will through political means; or stunned people into submission with self-promoting miracles; if Jesus had done any of those things, he would have been testing God. Because that’s not the way God had made for him. God gave Jesus the way of suffering with people and serving them. Not the way of self-promotion and self-service. Jesus still had to go through the Exodus of death and resurrection. To lead us all through the Red Sea of his blood to set us free, and bring us to the home God has promised us.

  5. Feed us and forgive us (Luke 11.3-4) [Sermon 08-28-2016]

    Leave a comment

    August 25, 2016 by jmar198013

    Sermon on the Mount

    Jesus taught us to pray for our bread; and to pray that we will be forgiving as well as forgiven people. But he also gave us a meal—one we share every week—that binds the story of our forgiveness to the bread we eat.

  6. Bring in your kingdom (Luke 11.2c) [Sermon 08-21-2016]

    3

    August 18, 2016 by jmar198013

    Sermon on the Mount

    One day God’s kingdom will come in its fullness. There will be a new heavens and a new earth. Our bodies will be raised imperishable. Death and sorrow will be no more. God will wipe every tear from every eye. We will dwell with God and God with us forever in a greened city—the new Jerusalem. Ultimately, this is what we’re praying for when we ask God to, Bring in your kingdom. In the meantime, because we pray these words, we are called to live in their light. That can mean doing things like planting gardens. Cleaning up litter. Wiping away each others’ tears, even as we cry together. Bringing healing to sick and wounded bodies. We are totally only limited by our imaginations! The point is, we bring heaven’s touch to this earth, this life, right here and now. That’s our work as disciples. That’s our work as the church. That’s God’s kingdom, working.

  7. Father, uphold the holiness of your name (Luke 11.2b) [Sermon 08-14-2016]

    1

    August 13, 2016 by jmar198013

    Sermon on the Mount

    Jesus didn’t teach us to pray to an Unmoved Mover; nor to an Angry God who barely tolerates our mere existence. No, Jesus said: “When you pray, say: ‘Father.'”

sketch

chronicles

das stückwerk

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 146 other followers