Posts tagged “Good Friday

Sermon Dei: Good Friday Passion Vespers 2017

Posted on April 14th, 2017

Immanuel Evangelical-Lutheran Church, Alexandria, Virginia Good Friday + April 14, 2017 + Luke 23:34-37 Who could have seen that it would turn out this way? “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:10f). Who could have seen that the one born on that day would be a Savior in this way? It seems, as blood streams from His hands, His feet, His crown, His side, that this Jesus is no savior. “Some savior!” they sneer. “He saved others; let Him save Himself if He is the Christ, the chosen of…

Sermo Dei: Good Friday Passion Vespers 2016

Posted on March 25th, 2016

When people hurt us—if they say something mean, don’t keep their promise, don’t invite us to their party—when anything unkind happens to us, our natural reaction is to be angry.  Even if we don’t react with an equally hateful word or deed, we will hold onto the sin.  Over the years, you can store up grudges, grudges that make you angry and bitter. What does not come naturally to us is to forgive. Not just move on and pretend nothing happened, but really, truly forgive. To forgive is a gift worked by the Holy Spirit. Now we might be willing to forgive if someone apologizes to us, if they try really hard to make friends again. But that’s not what our Lord does. He…

Sermo Dei: Good Friday 2015

Posted on April 3rd, 2015

For a purpose God made man. He endowed the man and woman with gifts, and called them to be like God. Through childbearing they would become participants in God’s ongoing act of creation; through stewardship of the world they would learn love. Young and new as children, they would grow and mature. Man had an end, a goal: to take the wild world and make it ever-more beautiful through love and creativity. But man sought pleasure, aesthetics, and wisdom apart from the Creator. They bought the lie that God was holding out on them, hindering them from being gods themselves. Thus man came to a different end, a bad end, a deadly end. He seemed finished. That fact—that we are finished—can cause us increasing…

Good Friday Passion Vespers 2014

Posted on May 10th, 2014

When someone hurts you, by a bad word or action, what’s your first reaction? Isn’t it to be angry with that person? Perhaps you control your anger. But you may hold onto the memory of the bad thing. You keep it in your heart. We call that a grudge, and the more grudges we store up, the more angry and bitter we get. It takes a very special person—a person steeped in God’s grace—to react in a different way to these hurts. We don’t naturally want to forgive. If someone has hurt us, and then they apologize, maybe then we’ll forgive. But until then, we keep it, and it burns in our heart like acid. Now think again about what we heard in the…

Sermo Dei: Good Friday Passion Vespers

Posted on March 29th, 2013

God made the world out of love. God gave the world  to man as a gift of love. God loved man, and wanted to bestow everything delicious, everything delightful, everything filled with joy and wonder and beauty on the first man and his beloved wife. One thing alone He didn’t want man to have, one thing alone He didn’t want man to know: evil. Still as little children, the first man and woman reached up to a tree and in so doing slapped God in the face. Our first parents weren’t merely taking fruit, they were spitting on God, declaring they knew better. Have you ever not listened to your parents, because you thought you knew better, thought that your way would make you…

Sermo Dei: Good Friday 2012 Chief Service

Posted on April 6th, 2012

When things are going well, we perceive ourselves with pride: healthy, handsome, strong; cute, beautiful, funny; prosperous, popular, successful. Then, when life goes awry, we are overcome by self-loathing. Both of these are illusions, delusions. These things are not who you are. For you have been baptized! The Passion of Jesus that we just heard is where we find out who we are, who God is, and what He thinks of us. In the Passion of Jesus we find the gospel. In the gospel we find out that God has taken who you are out of your hands.   The gospel is “the eternal statement of who you are” (Russell Moore). These Holy Days, which give us the Supper of Jesus, the cross of…

Sermo Dei: Good Friday 2012—Hunger Games and the Happy Exchange

Posted on April 6th, 2012

Many of you have read The Hunger Games trilogy, or seen the movie based on the first book. I haven’t seen the movie, but that’s on my list for after Easter Sunday. For those of you who haven’t read the book, it is set in a post-apocalypse America, the country being renamed Panem – Latin for “bread.” But bread is in short supply. A small group of elites lives prosperously in the capital city, while the people of the twelve districts are slaves of the state. Every year two children, a boy and a girl, are chosen from each district to compete in the Hunger Games, where the 24 contestants kill each other until only one is left.   Now this isn’t the sort…

Golgotha, Golgotha, YEAH!

Posted on April 27th, 2011

As much as I would like it to be gone, Rebecca Black’s Friday has been stuck in my head for awhile. (Thanks, Trent. Jerk. [Just kidding!]) This video won’t make any sense if you haven’t heard the original. But if you have, this will crack you up. [Warning: it’s totally irreverent. Which is kind of the point.] HT: Jesus Needs New PR

The Good Friday Fart

Posted on April 13th, 2009

Warning: This post contains material inappropriate for pietists, liturgical experimenters, Missouri Synod clergypeople, Higher Things bloggers, people who attended my last Bible class, my mother, and pretty much everyone else. Don’t read this. It’s blasphemous, poorly researched, and is going to upset anyone not named “Dave Juhl.” Maybe even him.

The privilege of the presiding minister

Posted on March 22nd, 2008

Since my second or third Good Friday as a pastor, I’ve offered the Sacrament at the Chief Service of the day. I’ve felt strange about it in years past, because of the papist rule against it, even though the Lutheran arguments in favor are overwhelming. Tonight was the first Good Friday where I had no qualms at all – it was pure joy and contentment. In fact, Good Friday now seems a day of sublime joy, despite the rightly-somber tone of the rite. Even the Reproaches, which are haunting in their accusation, are followed by such a peaceful prayer in the Agnus Dei hymn. Those words, given us by the Holy Spirit to pray, remind that the reproach we deserve has instead been taken…