Sermon for Palm/Passion Sunday 2018 - Mark 14-15
Passion. An ardent affection. A strong liking or desire for, or devotion to some activity, object or concept. Physical desire. Intense, driving, or overmastering feeling or conviction. Strong and barely controllable emotion.
Passion used to actually mean suffering. The notion that emotion, connection, destination can bring despair, pain, hardship. We see it now as being passionate about something. Energetic or overcome by it. A really big fan.
Sermon for the Fifth Sunday of Lent - John 12
Like many bookshelves containing epic stories about heroes and villains, and life and death, this reading from John contains two bookends. Bookends are those things we use to keep the books from falling off the shelf. Tipping over and knocking down a picture or grannies ashes. Bookends hold things together, so with John we hear first - Sir, we would like to see Jesus. Second – And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself. One is spoken by Greeks, men who have come to Jerusalem for the Passover festival. It could mean Greeks who converted. They are there for worship, so one would expect conversion. But they are ear-marked by their nationality. Greeks. Greeks who want to see Jesus.
Sermon for the Fourth Sunday of Lent - Numbers 21; John 3
I don’t like snakes. Never have. Never will. I apologize to those of you with pet snakes. Everyone needs to have someone love them, even snakes, but I tend to like to take the curse from Genesis 3 that God pronounces on the serpent literally – “Cursed are you above all livestock and all wild animals!...he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.” A little violent? Yes, but growing up in California with snakes that can kill you, you would understand my hostility. There is a sort of a great antagonism between myself and our slithering neighbors. It is not a romantic comedy.
Sermon for the 4th Sunday of Lent - Exodus 20; John 2
How well do you think a job would go, some sort of craft, if the tools you need are dull? If they need to be sharpened, you have them with you there, they are supposed to do the job, but they will not do very well. Not to mention they can be dangerous.
Working in restaurants we would have chefs tell us all about their knives and how they will spend a great amount of time during the week keeping them sharp and honed so the blade is straight and will cut everything like butter. A dull knife is a dangerous knife, I was told once.