Truth, Freedom, and Reformation

Text: John 8:31-36 One of the things that I have really enjoyed about the Bible and history seminars that I have been doing over the past few years, is those who come really appreciate the work that I’ve been doing to give the historical background as to how the Bible...

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Who Made Who?

Texts: Mark 10:35-45 At some point early on in my career, I stumbled across a saying that I try to take to heart every week when preparing sermons. It is a real caution, and a reminder of the responsibility that comes with this pulpit every week. The saying is quite...

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The Great Thanksgiving

Text: Deuteronomy/Reflecting on the Day It only happens maybe once every seven years, where the first Sunday in October happens to be the day before the second Monday. Traditionally, the first Sunday in October has become World Communion Sunday, where Christians all over the world celebrate the sacrament of communion...

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Sending

James 5:13-20 One of the most difficult things I had to do in my early career was to convince the church I served at that a children’s program that they had invested in wasn’t working. It was my first pastoral charge, and those who were involved in this were very...

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Gathering

Mark 8:27-38 & James 3:1-17 It has been almost 22 years since I was ordained as a Minister of Word and Sacrament. No, I don’t have an anniversary coming up soon, that’s in February. Rather, early in the summer I found myself reflecting and meditating on the preamble to the...

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Working in Faith

Text: James 2:1-26 Martin Luther hated this passage. Most of what he didn’t like about James is how it seemed to contradict Paul’s writings… at least if you took the small clips and verses and held them up against each other. Since Luther ferociously proclaimed that scripture could not contradict itself, the presence...

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When Traditions Get in the Way

Text: Mark 7:1-8 There is a downside of being a part of a tradition that extends back thousands of years. We can become so wrapped up within the individual traditions themselves that we forget the foundation of why we do what we do. Jesus frequently locked horns with Pharisees over matters...

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Out of the Nest

Luke 9:57-62 Last Sunday, when I arrived here just before worship, I had parked just outside of the southwest entrance. As I emerged from the car, there was a terrible commotion inside the bush right beside the door. I couldn’t tell what it was at first, but from the squawking,...

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One Wish

Text: 1 Kings 2:10-12; 3:3-14 If you had one single wish, what would that be? If God could grant you any one thing in life, what would that be? Would it be the usual suspects? Wealth? Power? Fame? I think given many of the life experiences that we have had,...

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The Healin Power of Hurtin Words

Psalm 137 When we were planning today’s outdoor worship as part of the Stampede Breakfast, I had asked Brad to come up with some country-themed songs that we could sing as part of today’s service. Back in early June, Brad came and said to me “I was thinking about one,...

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