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Showing posts from September, 2010

Sermon for September 26, 2010

Habits of Healthy Churches: Diversity

Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ. This will continue until we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God’s Son that we will be mature in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ. Ephesians 4:11-13

The book of Ecclesiastes reminds us of these words: For everything there is a season,
a time for every activity under heaven (3:1). I think it should say, “For everything there is a nut, bolt, nail or screw, and a correct tool for every activity under heaven.” Do you know people like that -- people who have exactly what’s needed for any home repair job that needs to get done? I’m not like that. I’m the kind of person who grabs whatever is around and tries to make it work. I’ll bang wood screws into place with a hammer becau…

Sermon for September 19, 2010

Habits of Healthy Churches: Energy

“So why do you keep calling me ‘Lord, Lord!’ when you don’t do what I say? I will show you what it’s like when someone comes to me, listens to my teaching, and then follows it. It is like a person building a house who digs deep and lays the foundation on solid rock. When the floodwaters rise and break against that house, it stands firm because it is well built. But anyone who hears and doesn’t obey is like a person who builds a house without a foundation. When the floods sweep down against that house, it will collapse into a heap of ruins.” Luke 6:46-49

So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless. 1 Cor 15:58

A few days ago, I was talking with someone about the worst job I ever had. I paid my way through seminary by fixing boat propellers at a shop in South Boston. It was hard work. In those days, to fix a damaged prop, one worker woul…

Sermon for September 12, 2010

The Habits of Healthy Churches: Devotion

When the crowds heard him, they were astounded at his teaching. But when the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees with his reply, they met together to question him again. One of them, an expert in religious law, tried to trap him with this question: “Teacher, which is the most important commandment in the law of Moses?” Jesus replied, “‘You must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.” -- Matthew 22:33-40

I have some questions. They are some of life’s unanswered questions:
Do cemetery workers prefer the graveyard shift?
Do Lipton employees take coffee breaks?
Do infants enjoy infancy as much as adults enjoy adultery?
Can you be a closet claustrophobic?
If 7-11 is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week and …

Sermon for September 5, 2010

The Complications of Long Division

A large crowd was following Jesus. He turned around and said to them, “If you want to be my disciple, you must hate everyone else by comparison—your father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even your own life. Otherwise, you cannot be my disciple. And if you do not carry your own cross and follow me, you cannot be my disciple. But don’t begin until you count the cost. For who would begin construction of a building without first calculating the cost to see if there is enough money to finish it? Otherwise, you might complete only the foundation before running out of money, and then everyone would laugh at you. They would say, ‘There’s the person who started that building and couldn’t afford to finish it!’ Or what king would go to war against another king without first sitting down with his counselors to discuss whether his army of 10,000 could defeat the 20,000 soldiers marching against him? And if he can’t, he will send a delegat…