Category Archives: Sermon clippings

Preaching and Pottering

So I finally did it.  I mentioned the Harry Potter books in a sermon this morning.  And, beyond that, I gladly acknowledged that I have read them and am currently rereading them.  And, even beyond that, I (again, gladly) read … Continue reading

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Longing for the Peace of Christmas

And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled … Continue reading

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Throw Out the Bucket List

A few things I said this past Sunday, reflecting on Romans 8:18-25, the Christmas pronouncement of “good news of great joy” and the sure hope of all things being made new – partly now, fully then… This is not all … Continue reading

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A Prayer for the New Year – Adapted from Jonathan Edwards’ Resolutions

Lord God Almighty, I understand that I am unable to do anything without your help, so I ask you to enable me by your grace to fulfill your will. Give me grace to do whatever brings most glory and honor … Continue reading

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An Advent Prayer

The Lord’s Prayer is a prayer for all seasons and circumstances.  But perhaps most especially during the season of Advent, the time of waiting for the coming of the King… Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your Name. Wonderful Counselor, … Continue reading

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How Far Does It Go? Far As the Curse Is Found!

The Apostle John wrote these sobering words in 1 John 5:19, “We know that we are from God, and the whole world lies in the power of the evil one.” That’s a pretty stark contrast.  What does this description of … Continue reading

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Exmas in Niatirb

I don’t usually include long quotes here but I’ll make an exception in this case.  In God in the Dock, a collection of essays by C. S. Lewis, there is an entry entitled “Xmas and Christmas:  A Lost Chapter from … Continue reading

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Reflecting and Rejoicing

To rightly rejoice, we need to rightly reflect.  I was reminded of this as I was reading from Acts 16 this morning and the account of the Philippian jailer’s conversion.  At the end of that account, Luke writes in Acts … Continue reading

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But Is That Where We Want to Be Heading?

Perhaps you’ve heard and appreciate this sentiment, “The church is like Noah’s ark.  The stench on the inside would be unbearable if it weren’t for the storm on the outside.”  It’s humorous.  It’s memorable.  And it’s revealing.  For it betrays … Continue reading

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He Really Has Gone to a Lot of Trouble for Us

As I wrapped up an introductory message in a new sermon series on the lives of Elijah and Elisha today, I said something along these lines: Elijah – just like all the Old Testament – points us to Jesus.  All … Continue reading

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Praise Fitted to Who We Are

When reading Jesus’ parables, a good way to approach them is to understand they were basically about one central thing.  Jesus told them not to make a wide range of sundry points but to press in on a particular idea.  … Continue reading

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Where Did THAT Come From?

Pompeii is a partially buried Roman city near modern Naples.  Along with Herculaneum, Pompeii was partially destroyed and buried under 13 to 20 feet of ash and pumice in the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in 79 AD. Pompeii was lost … Continue reading

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Not What I Wanted to Hear

One Sunday last fall, I was preaching on Ecclesiastes 12.  Verse 1 reads: Remember also your Creator in the days of your youth, before the evil days come and the years draw near of which you will say, “I have … Continue reading

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The Resurrection: Did It Really Happen? (Part 3)

From an historian’s perspective, let’s look at a couple more things – first, the beginning of the Church.  How did it all start?  This is worth some thought. If Jesus was not raised, His followers would never have spoken of … Continue reading

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The Resurrection: Did It Really Happen? (Part 2)

If the resurrection is true, if Jesus of Nazareth was raised after three days in the tomb, it has enormous ramifications – implications of the greatest breadth and depth.  There is so much cause for worry, distress, discouragement in this … Continue reading

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The Resurrection: Did It Really Happen? (Part 1)

The implications of the resurrection of Jesus are sweeping.  So much so that our doubts concerning the historical reality of the event need to be addressed head on.  Can we trust the New Testament accounts?  If we can’t, then let’s … Continue reading

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Fighting Side by Side

Roman soldiers, closing ranks On the topic of spiritual warfare, Paul writes in Ephesians 6:16, “In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one…” On this verse, … Continue reading

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Standing against the Cosmic Powers and Spiritual Forces

Orc army from “The Lord of the Rings” The third stanza of Martin Luther’s great hymn, “A Mighty Fortress Is Our God,” states: And though this world, with devils filled, should threaten to undo us We will not fear, for … Continue reading

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Peace on Earth…for you and me

“Merry Christmas, Charlie Brown!” In the last verse of the last chapter in the last book of the Old Testament, these words are spoken of the Messiah: And He will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the … Continue reading

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The Gospel and the Farewell Sermon (Part 2)

Jonathan Edwards served the church of Northampton, MA for twenty-three years.  He began in 1726 as the assistant to his grandfather who had been there since 1672.  It ended in 1750 with Edwards being ingloriously dismissed for various reasons – … Continue reading

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