The Truly Blessed

All Saints’ Day (C)

Sermon Text: Matthew 5:1-12

Peace be unto you from our Triune God – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

“Rejoice and be glad!” It is what we just sang, but more importantly, it is what our Lord just said in our Gospel lesson and quite frankly, is echoed throughout Holy Scripture.

“Rejoice and be glad!” Now… this minute… this hour… this day… everyday of your life. From the moment of your birth… certainly your “second birth” in the waters of Holy Baptism… and on… infinitum.

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Thy Works, Not Mine, O Christ

The Festival of the Reformation

Sermon Text: Ephesians 2:8-9

Peace be unto you from the Lord of the Church, its Sovereign Head, Christ Jesus. Amen.

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

So, what should we talk about? Odd question, I know, on this very special day. The word “reformation” certainly gives it away, but it may not say it all. To this, it would be fitting to add the words “restoration” and “preservation.”

What was reformed was the Christian church here on earth as it was cleansed of so many impurities and pollutants that had been added over time, sad to say, by the very men who were entrusted to keep it pure and undefiled.

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The Unfettered Word

The 21st Sunday after Pentecost (C)

Sermon Text: 2 Timothy 2:1-13

Peace be unto you from our Triune God – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.

Dear Friends in Christ,

The letter was dated September 4, 1944. It does not have much on it, but then again, it didn’t have to. Its purpose was simply to leave some trace evidence… to let whoever found it know that the people listed on this note really existed… that they were there… at Auschwitz… in the Nazi concentration camp where over 1.1 million prisoners died.

The letter was found in a bottle hidden in a concrete wall. It bears the names, camp numbers and hometowns of seven young men, six from Poland and one from France, all between the ages of 18 and 20.

Clearly, there were those who never wanted this message to get out, but it did. It was proof of life.

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Wait for It

The 20th Sunday after Pentecost (C)

Sermon Text: Habakkuk 1:1-4; 2:1-4

Peace be unto you from our Triune God – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.

Dearly Beloved of the Lord,

There are certainly many jobs that a person can have and we know that they are not all the same in terms of their degree of difficulty, safety, satisfaction, benefits and rewards, etc.

Some jobs seem better than others. We all probably have our “dream job.” But then, too, it would not be hard for any of us to fire off a list of jobs we would not like to do. There is even a television show, “Dirty Jobs,” where you can see what certain work entails and be glad that you do not have to do it.

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One God, One Mediator, One Ransom for All

The 18th Sunday after Pentecost (C)

Sermon Text: 1 Timothy 2:1-15

Peace be unto you from our Triune God – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.

Dearly Beloved of the Lord,

In the early 1970’s, a man by the name of Art Fry was a member of a church choir in St. Paul, Minnesota. Mr. Fry, however, was frustrated. Not by the choir, but by his hymnal and the fact that bookmarks he placed on the pages of hymns the choir was set to sing, kept falling out.

But then, Mr. Fry remembered that a few years prior, a colleague of his by the name of Spencer Silver had developed an adhesive that was strong enough to stick to surfaces, but left no residue after removal and could be repositioned and reused.

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Say the Word

The 2nd Sunday after Pentecost (C)

Sermon Text: Luke 7:1-10

Grace, mercy and peace be unto you from God our Father and from our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Dearly Beloved of the Lord,

One of the true joys of hearing the Word of God, reading and studying the Word of God is the opportunity to marvel at what all you find on each and every page… in each and every chapter. It’s the opportunity to see the Word in action even in the simplest of ways. This includes what can take place after the simplest of transmissions of that Word. It is truly astounding.

By all indications, such is the case involving a certain Roman centurion who name we do not know, but certainly his actions… his faith.

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If Anyone Love Me

The Day of Pentecost

Sermon Text: John 14:23-31

Grace, mercy and peace be unto you from our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Dearly Beloved of the Lord,

He was speaking to Judas… at the beginning of our Gospel text that is. It says that “Jesus answered him” but the “him” is not the Judas who betrayed our Lord. It is most likely the other disciple Judas, the son of James, who with the other Apostles is listening to our Savior speak of His impending ascension and what that means for them and for the world.

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