Sermon for September 27, 2020

Psalm 78:1-4, 12-16 • Exodus 17:1-7 • Philippians 2:1-13 • Matthew 21:23-32 This week’s theme is the obedience of faith. In Exodus Moses is told to strike a rock for water in response to the Israelites questioning whether the Lord was among them. The companion Psalm for this Old Testament selection recalls this story among others with a focus on God’s faithful acts among Israel. The sermon from Paul’s letter to the believers in Philippi enlists an early Christian hymn focused on Christ’s obedience, and the Gospel reading in Matthew uses a parable to contrast a response of faithful obedience with that of unfaithful disobedience. Grasping Our Identity Philippians 2:1-13 Today’s text presents us with three notable... Read the article

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Sermon for September 20, 2020

Psalm 105:1-6, 37-45 • Exodus 16:2-15 • Philippians 1:21-30 • Matthew 20:1-16 The theme this week is the God who sustains us. In Exodus 16, we see Israel liberated from Egypt, sustained by God in the desert with the gift of manna. Psalm 105 is the hymn of praise about this exodus, retelling the story. Matthew 20 is the parable of the rich landowner who provides payment and sustenance to whomever he wishes. Philippians 1, on which our sermon is based, tells about God’s refreshing strength for us in a tired and broken world. An Open Door in a “No Exit” World Philippians 1:21-30 ESV Read, or have someone read the text prior to the sermon: Jean Paul Sartre, French atheist existentialist philosopher, wrote a play on the human... Read the article

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Sermon for September 13, 2020

Psalm 114:1-8 • Exodus 14:19-3 • Romans 14:1-12 • Matthew 18: 21-35 The theme for this week is living grace fully which encourages us to move through the world with more thoughtfulness and kindness. Ex. 14:19-31 and Ps. 114 tell the story of the parting of the Red Sea, and we can see how recognizing God’s grace in our own lives can strengthen our belief. This week’s sermon outline is based on Rom. 14:1-12, where the issue of judgmentalism is dealt with squarely by Paul, convicting us to hold our personal preferences and opinions lightly and leave the bigger issues for God to correct. Lastly, Matt. 18:21-35 talks about extending grace to others and what real forgiveness looks like. Living Grace Fully Romans 14:1-13 If you... Read the article

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Sermon for September 6, 2020

Psalm 149 • Exodus 12:1-14 • Romans 13:8-14 • Matthew 18:15-20 The theme for this week is the God who passes over. The first reading, Exodus 12, describes the literal Passover, when God liberated Israel and passed over them and crushed Egypt. Psalm 149 describes this gracious God taking pleasure in his less-than-perfect people and “adorning the humble with victory.” In Matthew 18, Jesus gives instructions for restoring someone in sin to the community. Romans 13, on which our sermon is based, centers on the gracious ways of a gracious God. Putting On the Lord Romans 13:8-14 ESV Read, or have someone read Romans 13:8-14 ESV. Daniel Day-Lewis is an English actor best known for his role in Last of the Mohicans and Lincoln.... Read the article

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Sermon for August 30, 2020

Psalm 105:1-6, 23-26, 45 • Exodus. 3:1-15 • Romans 12:9-21 • Matthew 16:21-28 *The theme for this week is “the blessing of following.” In Exodus 3, we read the story of Moses and the burning bush, and we learn that God always equips us for any leadership role we’re given. Psalm 105 reminds us to seek the Lord and glory in his name, to give thanks and to praise. In Matthew 16, Jesus reminds Peter and the disciples to trust him, deny ourselves and follow him. The sermon outline, titled “True Discipleship: Loving as Jesus Loves” discusses the attributes of disciples of Jesus. True Discipleship - Loving as Jesus Loves Romans 12:9-21 NRSV Ask the members to give a practical characteristic or example of what a “true... Read the article

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Sermon for August 23, 2020

Psalm 124:1-8 • Exodus 1:8-2:10 • Romans 12:1-8 • Matthew 16:13-20 This week’s theme is God working out his miracle in us. Exodus 1 tells the story of Moses’ mother putting him in a basket and God miraculously intervening. Psalm 124 tells the story of God saving Israel again from ruin and defeat. Matthew 16 is the pivotal moment where Peter—an unlikely voice—starts to miraculously understand who Jesus is. Our sermon, “God’s Revolutionary People,” discusses Romans 12. The people of Jesus are defined by a miraculous unity in diversity and purity. This revolutionary community crossed ethnic, political, and socio-economic barriers with a supernatural love. God’s Revolutionary People Romans 12:1-8 ESV Begin the sermon... Read the article

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Sermon for August 16, 2020

Genesis 45:1-15 • Psalm 133:1-3 • Romans 11:1-2a, 29-32 • Matthew 15: (10-20), 21-28 This week’s theme is God’s faithfulness to reconciliation. In Genesis 45, God is faithful to Joseph by bringing reconciliation and redemption between Joseph and his brothers. Psalm 133 sings of the beauty of brothers living in unity. Paul is adamant of God’s mercy to both Jews and Gentiles in a letter to the Roman church while Jesus is recorded in Matthew’s Gospel extending mercy beyond the house of Israel to a Canaanite woman. God Forbid Romans 11:1-2a. 29-32 NRSV Start with a story of a time you questioned whether God had rejected you, perhaps before you came to an understanding of his grace. Or share a story of someone who believed he... Read the article

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Sermon for August 9, 2020

Psalm 105:1-6, 16-22, 45b • Genesis 37:1-4, 12-28 • Romans 10:5-15 • Matthew 14:22-33 This week’s theme is God’s unlikely story: how God uses counter-intuitive heroes and broken people to get the epic of redemption told. Genesis 37 begins the story of Joseph—the prideful dreamer who was sold into slavery. Psalm 105 is the poetic retelling of Joseph’s redemption story. Matthew 14 tells the story of impetuous Peter walking on water, falling in it, and walking again. Our sermon, “Paul’s Rosetta Stone,” is based on Romans 10. Paul is in the middle of connecting the Hebrew story of redemption with the gospel. The long and very human story of Israel crescendos in Christ, then continues in the long and very human story of... Read the article

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Sermon for August 2, 2020

Psalm 17:1-7, 15 • Genesis 32:22-31 • Romans 9:1-5 • Matthew 14:13-21 The theme for this week is “how God changes us.” In Genesis 32, we read the story of Jacob and how he was changed after wrestling with God. Psalm 17 provides an example showing that we often fail to realize that any good we do is simply God working through us, but we can be transformed whether we realize the source of that good or not. Our sermon outline titled “When One Cries…” features Romans 9, where it discusses how God changes us by helping us to develop compassion for others in our journey of faith. Lastly, Matthew 14 tells the story of feeding the 5000, which illustrates how God uses our participation in working with others to change us and... Read the article

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Sermon for July 26, 2020

Psalm 105:1-11, 45b • Genesis 29:15-28 • Romans 8:26-39 • Matthew 13:31-33, 44-52 The theme this week is God’s promise story. Our God has entered our story and keeps his promises through to the end. Genesis 29 tells the story of a broken promise by a person and a kept promise by God that brought Jacob and Rachel together, continuing the lineage of Israel (and Christ). Psalm 105 is a hymn of praise reiterating God’s covenant with his people. Matthew 13 talks about the in-breaking of God’s promised kingdom into the world through Christ. Our sermon, “All Things Together” looks at the promises of Romans 8. The crescendo promise is that God works all things together to make us like Christ. “All Things Together” Romans... Read the article

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