Sermons

Sermons

Thinking Biblically: Reading the Bible as a Whole

Today we come to the end of a journey.  For the past several weeks we have been thinking about how to interpret scripture, taking time to look at the various genres of books found in this sacred anthology, inspired by God, an in which we meet the living God.  We have explored how to interpret prophecy and wisdom literature, biographies, and parables.  Yet, there is still one more skill that we have not touched on.  It is perhaps the most…

Thinking Biblically: Introducing Prophecy

Primary Text: Zephaniah 3:14-20 All scripture references in this sermon are from the NRSV, unless otherwise noted. 14 Sing aloud, O daughter Zion;     shout, O Israel! Rejoice and exult with all your heart,     O daughter Jerusalem! 15 The Lord has taken away the judgments against you,     he has turned away your enemies. The king of Israel, the Lord, is in your midst;     you shall fear disaster no more. 16 On that day it shall be said to Jerusalem: Do not fear, O Zion;…

Thinking Biblically: Wisdom Literature

Primary Text: Job 28 1 “Surely there is a mine for silver,     and a place for gold to be refined. 2 Iron is taken out of the earth,     and copper is smelted from ore. 3 Miners put[a] an end to darkness,     and search out to the farthest bound     the ore in gloom and deep darkness. 4 They open shafts in a valley away from human habitation;     they are forgotten by travelers,     they sway suspended, remote from people. 5 As for the earth, out of…

Thinking Biblically – Reading the Epistles

What does it mean to thrive?  What does it mean to live abundantly?  Was Tolkien right?  Is it true that all that is gold does not glitter, that not all who wander are lost, that the old that is strong does not wither, that deep roots are not reached by the frost?  Paul’s implicit answers to questions like these, permeate this ancient and famous expression of hope.  So, let’s take a moment to walk through it, so that we can…

Thinking Biblically: The Gospels – Reading the Parables

  Just then a lawyer stood up to test Jesus.“Teacher,” he said, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?” He said to him, “What is written in the law? What do you read there?” He answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” And he said to him, “You have given the right answer; do…

Thinking Biblically: The Gospels – Reading the teachings

 “Do not judge, so that you may not be judged. For with the judgment you make you will be judged, and the measure you give will be the measure you get.  Why do you see the speck in your neighbor’s eye, but do not notice the log in your own eye?  Or how can you say to your neighbor, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ while the log is in your own eye?  You hypocrite, first take…

Thinking Biblically: The Gospels – Reading the Story(ies)

Now after they had left, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Get up, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you; for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him.” Then Joseph got up, took the child and his mother by night, and went to Egypt, and remained there until the death of Herod. This was to fulfill what had been…

Thinking Biblically: Studying The Bible

Proverbs 1:1-7 The proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of Israel: For learning about wisdom and instruction,     for understanding words of insight, for gaining instruction in wise dealing,     righteousness, justice, and equity; to teach shrewdness to the simple,     knowledge and prudence to the young— let the wise also hear and gain in learning,     and the discerning acquire skill, to understand a proverb and a figure,     the words of the wise and their riddles.  The fear of the Lord is…

Honest Hope: Hoping in the Future, While Living in the present

            Jeremiah 29:11 – “For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope” is one of the most popular verses in the modern Christian world.  We put it on coffee mugs, and inspirational colanders, we share it social media posts, and hang it on our walls, painted in beautiful script across a pieces of fine canvas.  When a verse so completely…