Showing posts from November, 2019

Christ the King

Colossians 1:11-20; Luke 23:33-43
Humanity had a very powerful experience when it came into contact with Jesus. It was such a powerful experience that it took the church generations to begin to realize the depth of that experience. And I think if we are honest, we as the church are still unpacking our experience of Jesus

As the church attempted to more fully understand their experience with Jesus they inevitably bounced from one extreme understanding to another. Those extremes began to be called heresies. We all struggle with heretical ideas as we attempt to grow in our understanding of Jesus. We have a natural desire to follow an idea to its extreme.

For example, some couldn't understand how Jesus could be a divine being and be human being. Some wanted him to be 100% human, and not God at all. They could accept him as a teacher, or a prophet. Others wanted him to be 100% God, and not human at all. To them there was something very unholy about human flesh. It's messy. Humans …

The New Creation- Is 65

Isaiah 65:17-25
We have ended our time examining the Psalms. Today we notice a shift in the readings towards the Reign of Christ, which we celebrate next Sunday. The Reign of Christ, or the Feast of Christ the King is the end of the church year in our liturgical calendar. We end the year with the end of the Christian story, which is when all things are made right- all injustice is ended- and all suffering ceases. Christ is on the throne of the universe and there is no disputing his rule, or disagreement that his rule is good. Our readings today speak about the return of Christ, the New Creation, and what we are to do in the meantime.

Today we will be looking at our passage from Isaiah 65 specifically. It is a sweeping promise about the future God will bring into reality. We see it reflected in Revelation 21 as well. Revelation says, “Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, ne…

Remembrance Day Sunday

Eph 6:10-17; Luke 6:27-36
As you know, Remembrance Day is tomorrow. It is important to remember the suffering that is a part of the high cost of war- then and now. It is important to remember how fragile peace can be. It is important to remember that the monster of war lives just under the surface and seeks a way to be released into the world. It is important to remember the sacrifices many make to try to do something about the suffering because to sit back and do nothing is a worse evil. It is also a day to remember Jesus' words to us about violence and about how we are to treat our enemies.

Christians have always had a difficult time with violence. At the beginning Christians seemed to be pacifists. The words of Jesus telling them to love their enemies, and telling Peter to put away his sword, rang pretty loud in their ears. St. Paul taught them that they didn’t fight against flesh and blood. There are many stories about Early Christians being martyred. They were wil…

All Saints- Psalm 149

Psalm 149; Luke 6:20-31 
Today we are celebrating the feast of All Saints, which was actually on November 1st. Most people don’t realize the connection between Halloween and All Saints Day. The old word for “All Saints Day” was “All Hallows Day”. … When we pray the Lord’s Prayer we pray, “our Father who art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name…”. If something is “hallowed” it is holy. The “hallows” are the “holy ones”. In Latin the word for ”holy” is “sanctus”, which is where we get the word “saint”. So, the saints are the holy ones, or the hallows. The night before “All Hallows Day” is “All Hallows Eve”, which gets transformed into “Halloween”.

As a culture we have pretty much lost the connection to All Saints, which is unfortunate because the saints are important for us to think about. … In one sense of the word, “saint” just means “Christian”, but saint soon came to mean more than that. The saints are those who have shown amazing holiness. They are those who we have no doubts about their…