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Showing posts from April, 2012

Sermon for Second Sunday of Easter - Point of View: Thomas

Sermon 4/15/12 John 20:19-31 Point of View: Thomas             My mother and I sometimes argue about which of us has the right approach. When it comes to life in the church, I tend to be an optimist. Despite forecasts to the contrary, I am usually sure that we are going to meet all our financial needs, that we will have a good turnout for something, that an event will be successful. But when it comes to everything else, I must admit that I am, well . . . my mother would call me a pessimist. My mother is an optimist in virtually all things and in all matters. For example, even though I am sure I have had some bad sermons, my mother, who reads mine every week, is quite sure that all my messages are excellent. You agree with her, don’t you? Don’t you? Also, my mom is always pretty sure she has enough money, regardless of her actual financial situation. It is a lovely attitude, to be sure, but sometimes it means she doesn’t ask me for help when I think she should. Ever the

Sermon for Easter Sunday - Point of View: Easter

Sermon 4/8/12 John 20:1-18, Mark 16:1-8 Point of View: Easter             Typically, at Easter, we read the resurrection story from the gospel of John – the first lesson we heard today. It’s the most well known, the most liked – the intimate scene of Mary Magdalene discovering Jesus himself at the tomb, finally recognizing him and calling him Teacher. In the three year cycle of scripture texts, you might also hear the resurrection story from Matthew and Luke. But it’s hard to ever focus on the resurrection story from the gospel of Mark. That’s because, like the rest of Mark’s gospel, his resurrection story is pretty short on details. It is only 8 verses long, and it was so upsetting to the early church that by the fourth century, manuscripts existed giving Mark longer endings. In most Bibles today, you’ll see Mark ending at chapter 16 verse 8, with footnotes or other section headings noting a verse 8(b) listed as the “shorter ending of Mark” and then verse 9-20, called th

Lectionary Notes for Easter Sunday

Readings for Easter Sunday, 4/8/12: Acts 10:34-43, Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24, 1 Corinthians 15:19-26, John 20:1-18, or Mark 16:1-8 Acts 10:34-43: Peter is speaking to Cornelius and his friends and relatives in Caesarea. Cornelius had been visited by a messenger from God telling him to invite Peter to his home and here him speak. "God shows no partiality". Do we get that? Believe it? Preach it? Live and practice it? "preaching peace by Jesus Christ" Ah, the gospel message is a message of peace. Too much of our Christian history works to counter that claim. We struggle on! A mini-sermon, all the facts needed to share the good news packed into one little blurb - this is Peter's quick pitch, at the opportunity he's been given. Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24: Note that this is virtually the same selection from Psalms as on  Palm Sunday , with slightly different verses. Included in Easter's reading, but