Hidden from the Wise, Revealed to Little Children

At that time Jesus declared, “I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to little children;yes, Father, for such was Your gracious will.All things have been handed over to Me by My Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal Him.Come to Me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light” (Matthew 11:25-30).Click here to listen to this sermon.Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ!When our grandson, Abbott, was quite a bit smaller—about two years old—Aimee and I would take him along on our walks through Dunham Park. On one occasion, he insisted on bringing along one of his toys. Planning on walking at lea…

Not Peace, but a Sword

Click here to listen to this sermon.Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ!Our text for today, Matthew 10:34-37, is a terribly difficult passage of Scripture. Not so difficult to understand, but difficult to accept. These words are even more disturbing because they come from the One whom Scripture calls the Prince of Peace. Jesus says: “Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. And a person’s enemies will be those of his own household. Whoever loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me.”  Most Christians want to think of our home as a place of refuge and peace, our family as a source of strength and comfort—especially in times of difficulty and tumult. Heaven help anyone who would try…

Jesus Sees; Jesus Calls; Jesus Sends

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Click here to watch sermon video. “When [Jesus] saw the crowds, He had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then He said to His disciples, ‘The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest’” (Matthew 9:35–38). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ!Seeing. Calling. Sending. That is the movement in the Gospel reading for today. It is also the movement of Jesus’ response to those who are harassed and helpless, of God’s interaction with His fractured and fallen creation, and of the sanctified Christian life as it lives by the Spirit of Jesus. Jesus sees. Jesus calls. Jesus sends.As He goes throughout the cities and villages, Jesus sees. This is not a minor detail. Many people go through life wondering if anyone sees, anyone notices. If you listen closely, that is at the heart o…

Authority Issues

Click here to listen to this sermon. Click here to view this sermon. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:18-20). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ! In 1981, Jeffrey Stout, a professor of religion and philosophy at Princeton University, published a book called The Flight from Authority. In it, he described a social and philosophical trend in western society. Collectively, he argued, we have been on a “flight from authority” for several centuries. In the Reformation, we fled the authority of the church. Under rationalism, we ran from the authority of Scripture. With Kant, we turned our backs on the authority of reason and then morality. The flight cont…

Come to the Living Water

Click here to listen to this sermon. On the last day of the feast, the great day, Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. Whoever believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’” Now this He said about the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive, for as yet the Spirit had not been given, because Jesus was not yet glorified. (John 7:37-39) Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ! Today is the Day of Pentecost, which commemorates Christ’s sending of the Holy Spirit to His Church. The Church lives and moves and has her being through the gracious inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Without God’s Spirit, no one could come to Christ or believe in Him. No one would be saved. The fifty-day celebration of Easter ends with this joyous festival. The risen and ascended Savior has sent the Holy Spirit to be our Sanctifier, entering our hearts at Holy Baptism, nurturing us th…

After You Suffer a Little While

Click here to listen to this sermon. “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time He may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you… And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you” (1 Peter 5:6,7,10). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ! Saint Peter, writing from Rome, addresses Christians in another part of the Roman Empire who are suffering because of their allegiance to Christ. Throughout this epistle we find Peter, himself in the hotbed of persecution in the city he calls “Babylon,” offering steadfast encouragement to those undergoing persecution for professing the fact of Jesus as truly Lord of all. Jesus, not Caesar, is the world’s rightful King who alone with the Father and the Holy Spirit is to be worshiped as God and Savior. Any title or honor that …