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Showing posts from August, 2011

Sermon for 10th Sunday after Pentecost, “Sunday School Stories: Moses, Part I“

Sermon 8/21/11 Exodus 1:8-2:10
Sunday SchoolStories: Moses, Part I
One time when I was visiting our friend and member Walt Jenkins, who is always reading something, he had a book on his coffee table that really caught my interest. I can’t remember the title, but I remember the concept. In each chapter, a different author looked at events in United States history and imagined what would have happened if one small variable had been different. For example, what if Paul Revere had not been able to complete his famous ride in time to warn colonials of the approaching British troops? What if he had been captured or injured or his horse broke a leg? Perhaps we can conjecture that a quick replacement would have been made. But it is only conjecture. We have no idea how one event might have impacted everything else. Or what if Lee Harvey Oswald had missed and failed to assassinate JFK? What if JFK had completed his presidency? Certainly the course of US history would be different – but how? You’ve…

Sermon for Ninth Sunday after Pentecost, ʺJoseph, Part IIʺ

Sermon 8/14/11 Genesis 45:1-15
Sunday SchoolStories: Joseph, Part II


            Today we hear the end of Joseph's saga, at least as the Bible records, but we miss a lot of the middle section. So let me fill you in, or remind you, of what happened, after we left Joseph, sold into slavery to Ishmaelites by his brothers last week. Joseph's brothers let Jacob, his father, believe Joseph has been killed by a wild animal. Meanwhile, Joseph is sold as a slave to Potiphar, the captain of the Pharaoh's – the king of Egypt's guard. Things go well for Joseph, though, in spite of circumstances. The scriptures read: ʺThe Lord was with Joseph, and he became a successful man; he was in the house of his Egyptian master. His master saw that the Lord was with him, and that the Lord caused all that he did to prosper in his hands.ʺ Joseph, though a slave, makes a place for himself in Potipharʹs house, and because God is with Joseph, Potiphar is also blessed.             But Potipharʹs wife,…

Sermon for Eighth Sunday after Pentecost, ʺJoseph, Part Iʺ

Sermon 8/7/11 Genesis 37:1-4, 12-28
Sunday School Stories: Joseph, Part I

            You all know I have three brothers. And like any good set of siblings, we have often indulged in a game of ʺwho is Mom's favorite?ʺ We all both claim and accuse each other of holding this title in some way. Jim is the oldest, so he had six whole years of undivided parental attention before I came along. I am the only girl, so obviously I am the real favorite. TJ had several health problems when he was born, so we all know he got the most coddling. And Todd – well, Todd is the baby, so he got everything, including my mother’s car, a gift that we will never let either of them live down. Spoiled. Then we figure Jim reclaimed the title by producing a grandchild, which is a totally sneaky way of winning favorite status. But of course, we all really know that while each of us has a different relationship with my mother, she loves us all equally. Completely, unconditionally, but with no hierarchy.         …