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Showing posts from September, 2009

Sermon on Matthew 9:1-8 for Children's Sunday, "What ails you?"

In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, Amen. Welcome to our church and school families, and to all our students who join in praising our God here today! The message I’ll share with you today is about the Gospel reading, where Jesus forgave and healed the paralytic. Grace, mercy, and peace to you from God our Father and from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

“This man needs healing! Lord, have mercy on him!”, might have been the words of his friends when they brought him to Jesus. Jesus took notice of their faith—their trust that He could heal their friend. Lying on his bed, they must have carried their friend in as though he was on a stretcher. There was no ambulance to take him, no hospital to care for him, no doctor to heal him. Only Jesus, and the hope of His mercy. Their friend was paralyzed. We don’t know his story; did he experience some tragic fall or accident? Some injury that left him unable to walk? Unable to move his arms and legs? But his …

Sermon on Mark 9:30-37, for the 16th Sunday after Pentecost. "Kingdom of Paradoxes"

In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, Amen. Today’s sermon from the Gospel reading will look at a few paradoxes in the kingdom of God. Grace, mercy, and peace to you from God our Father and from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

First we need to define what a paradox is: it’s when a truth or an event is contrary to what we would believe or expect. A famous paradoxical statement is “at the beginning of Dickens Tale of Two Cities: ‘It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair.’” Truth is remarkably often found in paradox. A paradox is not the same as a contradiction. It’s when things appear to contradict, but in fact do not. The Christian faith has many paradoxes: Jesus being true God and true man at the same time. That God is Three Persons, yet only One God. That we’re at the same time saints a…

Sermon on James 3:1-12, for the 15th Sunday after Pentecost, "The Untamable Tongue"

In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, Amen. Today’s sermon is from James; his warning about the deadly work of our tongue. Grace, mercy, and peace to you from God our Father and from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

We all know and have felt the evil of gossip in our lives; we all know the feeling of a harsh or hurtful word that was spoken in anger. Think how easily you can darken someone’s day by a rude or thoughtless word. But have we owned the fact that our tongue is a “restless evil, full of deadly poison” as James says? That it sets on fire our whole course of life and it is set on fire by hell? Isn’t that overstating it a bit, we think? How can such a small thing as our tongue be so bad or have such a terrible effect? Sure, maybe we’ve known some people with dirty tongues, who could unless a stream of abuse or cursing that would make a sailor blush…but my tongue?!? Certainly not! But I suspect we all sharpen our tongues sometimes and imagine j…

Romans 10:5-18, "Faith Comes By Hearing"

In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, Amen. The sermon text today in connection with our special gift of the New Testament in audio is Romans 10:5-18.

5 For Moses writes about the righteousness that is based on the law, that the person who does the commandments shall live by them. 6 But the righteousness based on faith says, “Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’” (that is, to bring Christ down) 7 or “‘Who will descend into the abyss?’” (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). 8 But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim); 9 because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. 11 For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.” 12 For there …