Posts

Showing posts from July, 2016

Your Soul, Those Things: Whose Will They Be?

Image
Click here to listen to this sermon.

And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.” But God said to him, “Fool! This night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?” (Luke 12:19-20). Grace and peace to you from God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ! It’s quite embarrassing really. Jesus has just warned His disciples to beware of the hypocrisy of the Pharisees. He has encouraged them to not fear those who will persecute them. He has promised His disciples that those who confess Him before men will be acknowledged in heaven. And He has assured them that they need not worry how to defend themselves when brought before the synagogues and the rulers and the authorities, but that the Holy Spirit will teach them what to say. Then some dunderhead in the crowd says, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.” Notice what he does not say: “Teacher, my brother and I are quarr…

As Dear Children Ask Their Dear Father

Image
Click here to listen to this sermon.

 “If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!” (Luke 11:13). Grace and peace to you from God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ! The other day, I painted my twin two-year-old granddaughters’ fingernails. My wife, Aimee, couldn’t believe it. “You never did that for your girls,” she said. “That’s right,” I answered. “They never asked me. Madyn and Briyr did.” “Papa, will you paint fingernails,’ they asked, emphasizing their request by wiggling their little fingers. So, I told them “Yes, I will, as soon as I finish feeding Boden.” They squealed in glee, and then asked me a couple of more times as they were waiting for me to get to it. Somewhat the opposite of their personalities, Madyn chose a subdued pink and Briyr a vibrant red, as you can see in the pictures I just happened to include in the bulletin for today. But it did get me to wonder: W…

The One Thing Necessary: The Word of Life

Image
Click here to listen to this sermon.

But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her” (Luke 10:41–42). Grace and peace to you from God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ! During their travels, Jesus and His disciples were often guests in the homes of people who accepted His message and supported His mission. In fact, when Jesus sent first the Twelve, and then the seventy-two into the towns of Judea, He instructed them to go without extra supplies. Those disciples were to depend on the hospitality of the townspeople. They were to stay with the people who welcomed them and eat in their homes. They were to heal the sick, and tell them the Good News, “The kingdom of God is near you.” Jesus didn’t force Himself on anyone. He went into the homes He was welcomed and invited, and taught His disciples to do the same. It didn’t matter who they were, what…

The One Who Shows Mercy

Image
Click here to listen to this sermon.

“Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?” He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” And Jesus said to him, “You go, and do likewise” (Luke 10:36–37). Grace and peace to you from God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ! The man who comes to “test” Jesus is an expert in religious law. Our text calls him a “lawyer,” but the Gospels more often identify such people as “scribes.” These men are often depicted as hostile toward Jesus and acting in league with the Pharisees. Typically, they let it be known that they considered Jesus’ observance of the Law to be deficient. In contrast to the majority of scribes in the Gospel accounts, however, this one shows no overt antagonism toward Jesus. Still, with his opening question, you sense there is going to be more than a little tension. “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” he asks. What does anyone ever do to get an inheritance? Someone else …

Loose Ends and Threads of the Kingdom of God

Image
Click here to listen to this sermon.

“Whenever you enter a town and they receive you, eat what is set before you. Heal the sick in it and say to them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’ But whenever you enter a town and they do not receive you, go into its streets and say, ‘Even the dust of your town that clings to our feet we wipe off against you.’ Nevertheless know this, that the kingdom of God has come near” (Luke 10:9-11). Grace and peace to you from God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ! Like many farm kids, my brother and I learned to be resourceful. String doesn’t grow on trees, and we certainly weren’t going to ask Mom or Dad to go buy us some when there was a perfectly good supply in the barn left over from the twine cut off the hay bales. The hardest part was untangling it. There were always a bunch of threads you had to follow to get each individual piece of twine free. Sometimes you would get so frustrated with a particular knot that you’d end up cutting the twine.…