Posts tagged “Quinquagesima

Sermo Dei: Quinquagesima 2017

Posted on February 28th, 2017

It’s hard to love difficult people. And everywhere we go, we find them. At work. At school. On the road. Sitting behind you, kicking, talking, spilling their drink on you. “A man’s enemies will be those of His own household,” Jesus says. He’s talking about people in our own families who go to war with us because our Christianity is causing problems. But we go to war over so much less, don’t we? It’s hard to love difficult people. And people are difficult because they have difficulties. One person is sick, another has a disability, still another is frightened by something we cannot comprehend. It upsets our plans, disorients our days, disrupts our priorities. And this is all for the good, because our plans…

Sermo Dei: Quinquagesima 2014

Posted on March 2nd, 2014

“Do you believe in miracles?” Thirty-four years ago last Sunday, Al Michaels uttered those famous words as the final seconds ticked away and the United States men’s hockey team beat the Soviets. The Miracle on Ice, as the game is now called, was more than a hockey game. It was a proxy for the cold war. The Soviet Union, with its militant atheism and murderous barbarism, could be defeated. It was a miracle America wanted to believe. Do you believe in miracles? Ask that question today, and you will find a materialistic worldview on the ascendancy in America that rejects the possibility of miracles. The disciples of Jesus knew better. They had seen Him work miracles. They weren’t tricked by a charlatan, nor were…

Where is Jerusalem?

Posted on February 24th, 2012

In the sermon on the Quinquagesima gospel of Jesus’ words, “We are going up to Jerusalem,” I indicated that all of us Christians are included in those words. A parishioner asked me about this Jerusalem: Where is it, how can I find it? Below was my answer to him: Dear ______, If you will, there are three “Jerusalems”: 1) The physical city that we can identify on a map and visit; 2) The church; and 3) The New Jerusalem, the heavenly city of which Rev. 21 speaks. When Jesus says, “We are going up to Jerusalem” in the Quinquagesima gospel, the immediate and primary meaning is that He is going to the city (1), the Twelve going with Him. What I was suggesting in…

Quinquagesima

Posted on February 19th, 2012

1 Cor. 13 and Luke 18:31-43 You have not loved your neighbor as God demands; thus all your words are as sounding brass or clanging cymbals, noise steeped in hypocrisy. You have not suffered long with your neighbor, but lost your temper and spoken ill of him. You have not been kind, but instead have envied what your neighbor has. Have you paraded yourself or been puffed up? Then you have not love. Have you behaved rudely, been arrogant and boastful? Then you have not love. You have sought your own, measuring everything by what pleases you. Too easily you have been provoked, and your mind has been steeped in evil, thinking on it, ruminating on it, fantasizing about it. Have you rejoiced in…

Quinquagesima: Faith Alone

Posted on March 6th, 2011

This is the third of a series we did through Pre-Lent focusing on the Solas: Grace Alone, Scripture Alone, and Faith Alone. Gospel reading: Luke 18:31-43 Shahbaz Bhatti, the only Christian in the Pakastani government, was assassinated last Tuesday for opposing Pakistan’s “blasphemy laws,” which prevent the free expression of religious beliefs. For example, defiling the Quran merits life imprisonment, and speaking against Muhammad is punished with death. There is a moving video from the London Telegraph interviewing Bhatti wherein he predicts his murder and, as he says he is ready to die, confesses: “I believe in Jesus Christ who has given His own life for us. I know what is the meaning of cross, and I’m following … the cross.” He gives a…

The importance of preparation

Posted on February 23rd, 2009

Lent is at our door. Are we ready? Ready for the change that God demands of us – change that should have been our program all along? Since Transfiguration Sunday on February 1, I have been consciously reminding my people, and myself, at every opportunity, that the Gesima-tide is our time to prepare for and map out the journey that we are going to undergo in following Christ in the way of the cross. With Quinquagesima yesterday, there was the stark reminder that the journey is upon us: “Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem,” and the things that are written about the Son of Man are about to come to pass. I have done what I observed at Redeemer, Fort Wayne, back in…