Category Archives: Torah

  1. Good fences make good neighbors? (Luke 16.19-31) [sermon 3-26-2017]

    Leave a comment

    March 24, 2017 by jmar198013

    The rich man—who was used to getting his way—wouldn’t let up. “No, Father Abraham!” he argued. “But if someone from the dead goes to them, they will change their hearts and lives.” Abraham said, “If they don’t listen to Moses and the Prophets, then neither will they be persuaded if someone rises from the dead.” And that gives the story a new twist. Because we know Jesus, the one telling the story, would himself rise from the dead later. But even that wouldn’t convince a lot of people. When you invest yourself in getting more stuff, gaining more status, and winning at any cost—like the Pharisees—you become blind to many things.

  2. Jesus and John (Luke 7.18-35) [Sermon 2-12-17]

    Leave a comment

    February 10, 2017 by jmar198013

    John came calling the people to cry, and he was right. Jesus came calling the people to dance, and he was right, too. The Pharisees and scribes thought John was demonic and Jesus was a drunk. And they were wrong. You know what that means? It means there are times and seasons when we need to hear a call like John’s to weep over our sins and repent. But Jesus also calls us to joyful celebration, to acknowledge God’s justice, and feast on God’s love.

    Children of wisdom will know when it’s time to cry, and when it’s time to dance.

  3. Setting the Sabbath free (Luke 6.1-16) [Sermon 1-29-2017]

    1

    January 27, 2017 by jmar198013

    The Sabbath was meant for the release, rest, and healing of those who had been slaves. But what happens when a law that was meant to give comfort to former slaves morphs into another form of bondage? How can it be a day of rest and release if you’re so worried about doing it wrong, you can’t really celebrate it? Those Pharisees would have people become slaves to the Sabbath. Jesus came to set people free. And he came to set the Sabbath free. So it could serve humanity, the way God meant it to.

  4. Welcoming God’s salvation (Luke 2.21-38; Psalm 131) [sermon 01-01-2017]

    2

    December 30, 2016 by jmar198013

    Like Simeon, each of us can reach out for Jesus, and rejoice before God: “my eyes have seen your salvation.” And God’s salvation is a wide-open welcome that reaches down into our depths.

  5. The King is coming, bringing joy (Isaiah 61) [Sermon 12-11-2016, Advent 3 2016]

    Leave a comment

    December 9, 2016 by jmar198013

    The prophet Isaiah pointed back toward the Jubilee to inspire joy in the remnant of Israel in the present, and hope for their future. During the season of Advent, the church does something similar. We remember that the Messiah of Israel, God’s anointed king Jesus, came into the world bringing joy.

  6. “I’m here; send me!” (Isaiah 6.1-8) [Sermon 11-13-2016]

    Leave a comment

    November 10, 2016 by jmar198013

    Like Isaiah, we live in unsettled and unsettling times. Things are changing, which is a constant in our world. But so many feel left behind. Lost. Unheard. Many are afraid of what the future holds for them, if anything. Many live in despair. In fear. In rage. In confusion. We also live in a time when so many unclean lips go unchecked, and the words they speak do real harm. We are surrounded by the walking wounded. In such a time, may we be people with clean lips. God needs us to be his lips, to speak words of hope, comfort, and healing to our wounded neighbors. To use our words to build others up, not tear them down.

    God’s invitation extends to us, from Isaiah’s day to our own: “Whom should I send, and who will go for us?”

    May you and I—all of us—respond as Isaiah did: “I’m here; send me.”

  7. When God repented (Exodus 32.1-14; Luke 23.34) [Sermon 10-09-2016]

    3

    October 7, 2016 by jmar198013

    Ps 15.4 blesses the person “who keeps their promise even when it hurts.” In our story today, we saw God keep his promises, even though it hurt him. Moses reminded God of the promises he’d made to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. And because God is a faithful God, he kept his promises to them. So God didn’t give up on Israel—even when they broke his heart, and he really wanted to.

    And he still hasn’t given up. Not on humanity. Not on his creation. He’s still the God who is faithful, even when it hurts. He proved that once and for all when an angry mob freaked out and committed an even graver sin than worshiping before a golden calf. As they nailed God’s Son Jesus to a cross, Jesus pleaded: “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they’re doing.”

    So God did just that; he forgave.

    And he hasn’t stopped forgiving.

sketch

chronicles

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

Join 149 other followers