Ephesians 3:1-12; Matthew 2:1-11 In Matthew’s story some folks show up late. We call these late-comers “wise men.” My prayer is always that our house will be filled with wise women and men.
Isaiah 61:1-4 This sermon is not for you unless you are having trouble seeing the world clearly and you feel lost and confused. This sermon is not for you unless parts of your life have incapacitated you and kept you from living freely. This sermon is not for you unless you have deep loneliness in […]
Mark 1:1-8, 2 Peter 3:8-15, Isaiah 40:1-11 In a culture lulled to sleep, ignorance, and darkness, there is room for a people who are awake in all their senses — a people of God determined to show and tell what it means to be awake, alive, and in the light of truth and justice.
Mark 13:24-37, 1 Corinthians 1:3-9 What an odd text for people getting ready for Christmas. What’s with all this scary language? We can’t schedule the loss of the sun and the shaking of the powers of the heavens. Don’t you know this is Christmas season? We go from Thanksgiving, a national holiday, to Christmas as […]
Matthew 25:31-46 Matthew makes us face whether or not we are a righteous nation. Most people write this off as a parable and the rest are allergic to judgment stories. We may, in a fit of nostalgia, sing “When the Roll Is Called up Yonder,” but mostly judgment is not our game. What if it’s […]
Matthew 25:14-30 There are two typical American versions of Jesus’ story of the talents. In the first version God dishes out good looks to one and basketball skills to another. The second story we tell is that God blesses all our money-making ways. What then is the difference in talents and gifts, talents and money? […]
Joshua 24 and Psalm 78 Prelude to sermon: I invite you to the story of Joshua 24 and the exhortation of Psalm 78 for us to be storytellers. I do this in the full knowledge of the challenge of postmodern philosophy that all BIG stories (metanarratives) are suspect, power grabs, abusive and oppressive. Postmodernism is […]
Joshua 3:7-17 Our reading from Joshua is about a river; it is about Israel crossing the Jordan into the Promised Land. At first, the Jordan is just a river, just another river in the Bible, but not for long. When Israel crossed the Jordan to enter the Promised Land, the meaning of Jordan changed forever. […]
Ruth 1 Start with famine and a starving family. Naomi and Elimelech, husband and wife with sons: Mahlon and Chilion. Desperate times call for desperate measures and this Jewish family is moving to Moab, an ancient enemy of Israel. You would have to be mighty hungry to leave home to go to enemy land in […]
Matthew 22:15-22, Psalm 99 An act of imagination opens Psalm 99: The Lord sits enthroned upon the cherubim. The cherubim are powerful creatures. Two cherubim, with flaming swords, are left to guard the Garden of Eden. Ezekiel describes them as four-headed scary creatures worthy of any horror movie. The psalmist has entered the sanctuary and […]