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Archive for June 2011

Abraham and Isaac (Genesis 22)

The account of God asking Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac is one of the most shocking, powerful, poignant stories in the entire Bible.

How could the God of life ask for such a sacrifice?

This sermon seeks to reframe the story of Abraham and Isaac, found in Genesis 22, in terms of the wider biblical narrative, discovering that God does not ask something of Abraham (or of us) that he is not willing to do himself, and that when God asks us to give something up, it is because he wants to give us something better in its place - more of himself.

This sermon is accompanied by a Prezi presentation which can be accessed at this link.

It was preached on Sunday 26th June at St John's Southgate Lutheran Church.

Enjoy!

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Jesus' words in the passage known as 'The Great Commission' (Matthew 28:16-20) give to his disciples three great gifts: the gift of humility (you are not in control!), identity (the Great Commission is not just command, it defines who we are!) and belonging (The Great Commission comes with the Great Promise - 'I will be with you always').

Although sometimes we can hear these words with a sense of guilt, through Jesus' call, we are invited to work with him in his ongoing mission in the world, by his authority, empowered by his presence, in a life wrapped in forgiveness from beginning to end.  That's why it's called the 'com-mission'. Com=with, mission = sent.  We are sent with Jesus, in the name of the Triune God.

The sermon MP3 includes the answers to some brief questions asked as part of discussion time after the sermon.

This sermon was preached at St John's Southgate Lutheran Church on Trinity Sunday, June 19, 2011.

Enjoy!

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Two young Melbourne social entrepreneurs came up with a brilliant, lifesaving idea when they put these two facts together: Nearly 900 million people around the world can't access clean water. In Australia, we spend around $600 million each year on bottled water. Thankyou Water is bottled water, the profits of which all go to clean water projects in the majority world. When you drink, others can drink.

But this idea is not new, in fact. Jesus proclaimed much the same thing in John 7.  He said that for all who are thirsty and come to him and drink, 'rivers of living water will flow from within them.'  Those who believe in Jesus thus become wellsprings of living, lifegiving water for a thirsty world through the power of the Holy Spirit, whom Jesus pours out at Pentecost.

This sermon explores Jesus' promise - and what it means for us and for the spiritually thirsty world in which we live.

It was preached on Sunday 12th June, Pentecost Sunday, at St John's Southgate Lutheran Church.

Enjoy!

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Is Jesus' ascension simply a quizzical party trick?  Is the Ascension just Jesus' 'going away party'?

Given that nearly one quarter of the Apostle's Creed deals with 'the time between resurrection and return' there must be more to it than that.  In fact, Jesus' ascension is full of good news for us, as the ascended Jesus, now given all power and authority, continues to work and intercede for us at the right hand (the place of power and honour) of the Father.

This sermon was preached on Sunday 5th June at St John's Southgate Lutheran Church.

Enjoy!

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