Sermon for December 27, 2020

Psalm 148:1-14 • Isaiah 61:10–62:3 • Galatians 4:4-7 • Luke 2:22-40 The theme for this week hope in the God who is always in control. The call to worship Psalm encourages the whole world, from the smallest creatures to the mountains, to ring with praise for God who is over all. Isaiah 61 gives us a gorgeous picture of God’s bride, Israel, prepared for his love. Galatians 4 tells about the over-arching narrative of hope—God’s plan through the law and now the gospel. Our sermon is from Luke 2, the story of Simeon who blessed the newborn Jesus. He connects this baby into the story of hope that had been centuries in the making. Advent Also Starring: Simeon and Anna Luke 2:22-40 ESV Read, or have someone read, Luke 2:22-40... Read the article

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Sermon for December 20, 2020

Psalm 89:1-4, 19-26 • 2 Samuel 7:1-11,16 • Romans 16:25-27 • Luke 1:26-38 The theme this week is God with us, which reminds us that we are never alone. The Psalm 89 call to worship confirms God’s abiding presence with us, as it was with David. In 2 Samuel we read the story of David’s desire to build God a house, and God’s correction to him through the prophet Nathan that “I [God] have been with you wherever you went.” Romans 16 speaks of God’s strengthening and the revelation of the mystery—we are not alone! Last, our sermon text from Luke tells the story of the angel Gabriel breaking the news to Mary that she would bear Jesus, if she were willing, with the affirmation that God would “overshadow” her and be with... Read the article

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Sermon for December 13, 2020

Psalm 126:1-6 • Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11 • 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24 • John 1:6-8, 19-28 Our theme this week is Jesus brings restoration and joy to all. Our call to worship Psalm praises God for his restoration. The passage in Isaiah 61 focuses on the joy God’s people will feel because of the renewal brought about by the Messiah. Paul tells us in 1 Thessalonians 5 that we should “rejoice always” because of Christ. In John 1, John the Baptist bears witness that Jesus has come so that all people might believe. Restoration Begins Today Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11 Today is the third Sunday of Advent—a time when Christians celebrate the incarnation—when God became man through Christ, whose birth we celebrate. It is also a time when we... Read the article

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Sermon for December 6, 2020

Psalm 85:1-2, 8-13 • Isaiah 40:1-11 • 2 Peter 3:8-15a • Mark 1:1-8 This week’s theme is Comfort in God’s faithfulness. The call to worship Psalm recounts God’s faithfulness and encourages us to be comforted by God’s words of peace. The readings in Isaiah and 2 Peter both speak words of comfort to people in very uncomfortable situations on the grounds of God’s faithfulness to his promises. The Gospel reading in Mark quotes Isaiah 40 to announce the good news of God’s faithful promises being fulfilled in Jesus Christ. A Word of Comfort Isaiah 40:1-11 (NRSV) There’s a humorous story of a teenager who comes home and tells his dad: “Dad, I have some good news and some bad news about your car. The good news is—the... Read the article

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Sermon for November 29, 2020 Advent 1

Psalm 80-1-7, 17-19 • Isaiah 64:1-9 • 1 Corinthians 1: 3-9 • Mark 13:24-37 The theme this week is all passes away, mercy endures. In the call to worship in Psalm 80, the poet pleads with God to bring mercy on them and reclaim them as his people. In Isaiah 64, the prophet begs for mercy for God’s people who are clay in the hands of the Potter. In 1 Corinthians, Paul talks to this troubled community about how God will keep them and hold them until the last day. Our sermon is based on Mark 13, which gives the terrifying apocalyptic image of the temple’s destruction in AD 70, an early signal that God’s glory no longer rests there, but with the new community in Christ. A Seat at the End of the World Mark 13:24-37 ESV One of... Read the article

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Sermon for November 22, 2020

Psalm 100:1-5 • Ezekiel 34:11-16, 20-24 • Ephesians 1:15-23 • Matthew 25:31-46 This week’s theme is Christ the King. This week’s “call to worship” Psalm invites the sheep of the pasture to sing praises to the Lord who is worthy of universal glory. The text of Matthew governs the other lectionary texts as it focuses on Christ’s coming enthronement to glory. Matthew’s text calls along as a companion the text in Ezekiel where the Lord likens himself to a Shepherd taking care of his sheep. The New Testament passage will provide the majestic opening text of Ephesians that culminates with the exaltation of Christ reigning in full dominion. The Shepherd King Matthew 25:31-46 Are you the type of person who doesn’t mind... Read the article

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Sermon for November 15, 2020

Psalm 123:1-4 • Judges 4:1-7 • 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11 • Matthew 25:14-30 The theme this week is God is in charge. Psalm 123 calls us to worship, and it sings of God’s mercy that we depend on. Judges 4 gives us an account of God sending Israel victory when they depend on him. 1 Thessalonians 5 talks about the end of days when God re-establishes his rule on earth in Christ. Our sermon, “Royalty in Exile,” is based on this reading. Matthew 25 tells us how God is in charge and we should make the most of the life he gave us because our time is finite. Royalty in Exile 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11 ESV Begin by reading 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11 ESV. Falling in love. Getting bit by the love bug. Taking love potion number 9. Puppy love.... Read the article

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Sermon for November 8, 2020

Psalm 78:1-7 • Joshua 24:1-3a, 14-25 • 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 • Matthew 25:1-13 The theme for this week is hope and promises, which encourages us to consider God’s promises and allow them to fuel our hope. The “call to worship” Psalm reminds us to tell the generations of the “praiseworthy deeds of the Lord.” Joshua reminds the Israelites of the many times God delivered them and he encouraged them to base their commitment on this evidence of God’s faithfulness. This week’s sermon outline is based on 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, where Paul addresses the big question about God’s promise of resurrection to us. Lastly, Matthew tells the parable of the foolish bridesmaids who weren’t ready, thus encouraging us to wait... Read the article

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Sermon for November 1, 2020

Psalm 107:1-7, 33-37 • Joshua 3:7-17 • 1 Thessalonians 2:9-13 • Matthew 23:1-12 The theme for this week is God lifts up the humble. The Revised Common Lectionary readings always begin with a psalm as a call to worship; this week it is Psalm 107, which beautifully describes the streams and harvest that God gives to those who depend on him. Joshua 3 tells the story of Joshua beginning his leadership for the desert-weary children of Israel and how God goes before them. Matthew 23 is a word of judgment against the Pharisees who are enjoying their “box seats” in society but who should be servants. Our sermon is based on 1 Thessalonians 2, which gives us a picture of Paul doing his humble work as a tentmaker to support his ministry. ... Read the article

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Sermon for October 25, 2020

Psalm 90:1-6, 13-17 • Deuteronomy 34:1-12 • 1 Thessalonians 2:1-8 • Matthew 22:34-46 This week’s theme is shared ministry. In Deuteronomy we witness Moses passing the baton of leadership to Joshua accompanied by a call to worship Psalm that reflects on life’s transience while calling on God’s compassion to the faithful. The New Testament lesson comes from First Thessalonians, where Paul recounts his own ministry and preaching in Thessalonica providing a pattern for ministry and a window into the Father’s heart revealed in Jesus’ ministry. The Gospel reading in Matthew provides Jesus’ own teaching concerning God’s great commandment of loving God and neighbor followed by Jesus teasing out his identity as the Son of... Read the article

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