The Parable of the Cross

The first half of the life of Jesus is a parable. It’s full of parables, but it is itself parabolic — it’s mysterious, enigmatic, and constantly pressing a question: Who is this? What does it does it mean? What does He mean? And perhaps most importantly, how will you respond, what will you do? And…

Hospitality is not a Selfie on Instagram

Tim & Kaylee’s Wedding Homily Hospitality is at the center of the Christian faith, and this is because the gospel itself is God’s amazing hospitality extended to a fallen, sinful world. Paul says, “For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet perhaps for a good man some would even dare to die. But…

Only Counts Faces

How do you imagine God? Is He a scrooge counting every penny, recording every infraction? Is He distant and oblivious, an old man who’s hard of hearing? How do you imagine God? In the parable of the prodigal son, Jesus tells us about a Father who loves and gives. His younger son is greedy and…

You Weren’t & You Hadn’t

Jesus warns that forgiveness is a difficult thing. In one place he says “take heed to yourselves.” Watch out for this. And after hearing the exhortation, the disciples gape and plead with Jesus to give them more faith. Christian forgiveness is not for the faint of heart. So what does Jesus teach? He says that…

Called to Discipleship

At the beginning of worship every week, you are called to worship. The Call to Worship is labeled Entrance in your bulletin and includes our processional hymn, the Greeting, and our opening Prayer, the Collect for Purity. At the beginning of the worship service, you are summonsed by the God of the whole universe to…

Jesus is Not the Church

If the church identifies its structures, its leadership, its liturgy, its buildings, or anything else with its Lord — and that’s what happens if you ignore the ascension or turn it into another way of talking about the Spirit — what do you get? You get, on the one hand, what Shakespeare called, ‘the insolence…

The Exodus of Jesus

Our sermon text is about a new Exodus that God promises through Isaiah, an Exodus out of exile into freedom, into glory. In the gospels, the turning point in Jesus’ ministry, when He turns His face toward Jerusalem, is the transfiguration, when Moses and Elijah appear with Jesus, and He shines with the glory of…

14th Sunday in Trinity: Exodus 33-34

Introduction The greatest thing is knowing God. 1 John was written to give assurance of what it means to know God: keeping His commandments (1 Jn. 2:3-4), being children of God (forgiven & freed from sin) (1 Jn. 3:1-6), listening to the Apostles (1 Jn. 4:6), loving others (1 Jn. 4:7-8), having the Holy Spirit…

Fifth Sunday in Trinity: Exodus 21-23: Lessons: Ex. 21:1-14, Heb. 10:1-25, Lk. 6:27-45

Introduction Last week we framed this covenant renewal scene as God’s aim to clothe His son, Israel, in His glory. The wind and words of Sinai were ultimately accomplished at Pentecost, through the Spirit of Jesus, undoing all guilt and shame. The initial commands regarding worship are an invitation into this glory. We continue into…

Assurances of Salvation

Pastor Jim Wilson has a great little booklet entitled Assurances of Salvation, available here in Kindle format and available here for free download, along with a few other goodies. The booklet lists 8 ways to have assurance of salvation but begins with the recommendation to read 1 John which is written “so that you may…