Sunday, April 29, 2018

April 29, 2018 - Easter 5B

In the name of the Risen Lord. Amen.
            When it comes to Biblical passages about love, the most well-known is probably 1 Corinthians 13. You know, the one you’ve heard at nearly every wedding that you’ve ever been to: “Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious, or boastful, or rude.” And I have nothing against that passage, it’s a wonderful exploration of love. The passage that we heard today from the first epistle of John though is one that should be a part of our understanding of love, perhaps even more than the one from 1 Corinthians.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

April 22, 2018 - Easter 4B

In the name of the Risen Lord. Amen.
            The Lord is my shepherd…. I’m sure that many of us could recite the rest of Psalm 23 from memory. It truly is a wonderful part of Scripture and I’m glad it has entered into the hearts of so many Christians because, at its core, the 23rd Psalm is about God’s love, which is something we all need to be encompassed by. At the same time, familiarity can often lead to shallow and sentimental interpretations. So this morning, let’s get deeper into this profound poem of faith.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

April 15, 2018 - Easter 3B

In the name of the Risen Lord. Amen.
            Easter is, of course, at the center of our faith. In his first letter to the Corinthians, St. Paul puts it clearly:  “If Christ has not been raised, then our proclamation has been in vain and your faith has been in vain… If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins… If for this life only we have hoped in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied.” It’s true, the Resurrection is what animates our faith, undergirds our hope, and inspires our witness.

Sunday, April 8, 2018

April 8, 2018 - Easter 2B

In the name of the Risen Lord. Amen.
            The cardinal rule for preaching on Easter Sunday is “keep it simple.” So, last Sunday my point was essentially “Easter is God’s glorious and joyful joke.” The thing that you never want to do in an Easter sermon is to try to explain the Resurrection. For one, the Resurrection is beyond explanation, so any attempt to explain is going to fall flat, which is not what you want when you have a church full of people. And another reason for not explaining the Resurrection is that it turns the Resurrection into a historical event that people can either believe or not. It turns the Resurrection into an intellectual exercise instead of an experience of grace. Easter Sunday really is all about entering into the joy of Easter, not explaining it.

Sunday, April 1, 2018

April 1, 2018 - Easter Day

In the name of the Risen Lord. Amen.
            What a joy it is to see you all this morning in your Easter best. Easter is first and foremost a gift. It is the gift of new life from God and the joy that we have this morning is a gift as well. Each of you are a gift. It has been noted that the Resurrection is not an individual event that happened only to Jesus, but rather is the dawning of the new creation, of which we are all a part. Easter is a communal event because, by the grace and triumph of God’s love over the forces of sin and death, we are all raised to the new life of the Resurrection. So we are blessed beyond measure to have each of you with us this morning. By having more of the community of faith gathered here, we are that much closer to seeing the full grandeur of the Resurrection. In the name of the Risen Lord, welcome to each of you.