03-04-2018 Sermon - More to Be Desired than Gold!


The Psalmist could speak of God's rules as being more desirable than gold and sweeter than honey. The idea of rules, regulations, and commandments does not always register very high on most of our excitement registers. So how is it that when we become full of faith, we do not only value the awesome promises in Scripture, but we also come to value and savor our Lord's commandments?

02-18-18 Sermon - Being Steadfast Under Trial


James tells us that the person who remains steadfast under trial will receive the crown of life. But who among us hasn't crumbled under pressure and succumbed to the temptations of the devil. This morning we will together discover the good news for receiving this crown in spite of our many failings, while at the same time actually becoming more steadfast under trial.

02-11-18 Sermon - We Have Something More Reliable


Wouldn't we all like to enjoy the benefits Jesus' first disciples had? They witnessed mighty miracles, with dramatic healing and exorcisms! And in today's Gospel Lesson three disciples witnessed Jesus' appearance being altered so that his face shone like the sun. They also witnessed Moses and Elijah in the company of Jesus. And yet Peter will later write that we have something more reliable than this. What Peter is referring to is something that is available to all of us.

01-28-18 Sermon - Authorized to Speak for God


Many voices purport to speak for God, but not all are authorized to do so. The question is how are we to know who has been commanded to be a mouthpiece of the Lord and therefore someone we should listen to? Moses dealt with this matter as Israel was about to enter the Promise Land. And our Lord Jesus made claims that he was the culmination and definitive one to speak as God. And now with the Prophetic and Apostolic Word already spoken, need we bother to listen to anyone today claiming to have a new Word of God?

01-21-18 Sermon - Fishing With Carrot And Stick


As Jesus begins his public ministry his message sounded similar to that of John the Baptist, and indeed similar to the prophets of the Old Testament. Repent and believe - the proverbial "carrot and stick", although with the stick coming first. So what is different? It is Jesus' insistence that the time has arrived and that kingdom is at hand. And with his advent on the scene the good news to be believed will be what Jesus will accomplish on the Cross for the forgiveness of sins and how this opens the kingdom to believers...

01-14-2018 Sermon - Glorifying God In Your Body


When it came to the Old Testament dietary laws, Christ laid them aside declaring that they had served their purpose, and that henceforth food merely passed through the body. It did not defile or make holy. Some in the Corinthian Church thought the same reasoning could be used to set aside commandments dealing with sexuality. But Paul insisted that the moral law remains, and what we do with our bodies matters! After all the Gospel hope is in the resurrection of the body to life eternal. And presently our bodies have been joined as members of Christ's body. They are temples of the Holy Spirit. And they are collectively with other believers the Bride of Christ. And so we are to glorify God in our bodies...

01-07-2018 Sermon - Standing With Sinners


The account in Mark's Gospel of Jesus' baptism is brief, and like the rest of his Gospel Mark lets the action tell the story. And the action we see taking place is our Lord Jesus standing in the Jordan along side sinners who need the forgiveness of sins. And what we learn as Mark's Gospel unfolds is that Jesus stands with sinners accomplishing on our behalf all that God requires of us.

12-24-2017 Sermon - From Heaven to Earth


When it comes to the Christian Faith it is important to note the direction of the action, and the subject of the verbs. Is the direction heaven to earthward? Or is it earth to heavenward? In the most important action, who is the subject of the action? And who is being acted upon? Our lessons this morning will help us to see the primary direction is from heaven to earthward, and that our Lord is the most important actor, and we the one's being acted upon...

12-17-2017 Sermon - Redeemed And Full of Everlasting Joy


The Third Sunday of Advent emphasizes one of the themes of the Advent Season, and that is the matter of joy and rejoicing. As we await the coming of King Jesus we are reminded of the promise to the people of God of a fully redeemed creation and our being full of everlasting joy. In our texts today we learn how it is that the rejoicing already begins even before the consummation of all that is promised. Truly we wait patiently with sure and certain promises, and with a foretaste of the feast to come...

12-10-2017 Sermon - On Preparing the Royal Highway


In week two of Advent we gloriously learn of God's own preparations for making a way to come to our lives and then to take us to be with him in our heavenly home. This preparation involves a messenger who cries out God's Word in the wilderness of this age. God's messengers continue to this day to speak this word bringing us baptismal repentance and the promised forgiveness of sin.

12-03-2017 Sermon - Our Lord Comes Down to Save Us


The ancients had a lot better sense of how to prepare and make ready for the arrival or advent of a guest. That is because before the age of trains, planes, and automobiles along with cell phones, you had to be ready over a lengthy period of time. So we can learn a lot from the likes of the Prophet Isaiah who lived some 2700 years ago on how to make ready and be prepared for the Advent of the Lord in his return to earth. And adequate preparation can be summed up in a word...

11-26-2017 Sermon - The Shepherd King Comes In Judgment


Jesus promised his followers that he will come again at the end of the age, only with his second advent (coming) his status of being both the Good Shepherd and the King over all will be apparent in all its glorious splendor. At his return all the dead will appear before him, and he will judge all people according to their deeds. And we will all being justly condemned. However, those whose name are recorded in the Book of Life will be pardoned and welcomed into the eternal kingdom. In this sermon we learn a little of the difference between the righteous and the wicked, those who will fair well in the judgment, and those who will not...

11-21-17 Sermon - Thankful for Daily Bread


In Luther's Small Catechism he reminds us that we ask in the Lord's Prayer, "Give us this day our daily bread" so that we realize where our daily bread comes from and that we receive the same with thanks. Interestingly, "faith" is nearly synonymous with the giving of thanks to God, because in humility we look to God as the source of every good gift, including the forgiveness of sins and the bread of Life onto life eternal. So sincere gratitude is indeed one of the truest signs of a living and active faith.

11-19-2017 Sermon - Since We Belong to the Day


The Day of the Lord, that is, Christ's promised return at the end of the age, will come unexpectedly as a thief in the night. For Christ will come in all his royal splendor and he will judge the inhabitants of earth. Even for baptized believers, it is important that their faith is living and active. Such a faith lives in the light of God's Word, continually repents of sins, and continually trusts and hopes in what Jesus' death and resurrection accomplished for us.

11-12-2017 Sermon - What Kind of Day Will it Be?


Every great story has a plot and a climax. And the climax is not always predictable, just as it is not always predictable in real life. This morning we will consider the climax of the human story. The plot involves a sinful rebellion and resulting brokenness. The climax is called "The Day of the Lord". Just what kind of day will this be? Our three lessons will help to answer this question...

11-05-2017 Sermon - Our Place in the Communion of Saints


People have accused others of "being so heavenly minded that they are no earthly good." But as C.S. Lewis points out, history confirms that those who have done the most good in this age are often those who have thought the most of the age to come. All Saint's Sunday helps us to set our minds on the things above, particularly as we focus on "the communion of saints" and the beautiful portraits provided in our readings this morning. They only scratch the surface of what has been promised to us as baptized believers in Christ Jesus.