Sermons: Current


All sermons are by Rev. Stephen Springer, unless otherwise noted.
Sermons are available in text and/or audio format.

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March 18, 2018 :: Lent 5B 2018  [John 12:20-33]
It’s a striking phrase. “I want to see Jesus. I want to meet Jesus. I want to know Jesus.” These so-called Greeks. The foreigners. “I want to see Jesus.” On one level, the gospel reading today says, “If you want to see Jesus, look to the cross.” Some Greeks say that they wish to see Jesus. Jesus replies by saying that he is going to be lifted up. That unless a grain dies in the earth, nothing will grow.
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March 11, 2018 :: Lent 4B 2018  [John 3:14-21; Numbers 21:4-9]
And just AS you would not think that a poisonous snake would be a symbol of healing– but then you read about it in the books of Moses, and you read about it in Greek mythology– just as you would think that the snake that brings poison is an odd way to give healing and life, so it is that the death of Jesus on a cross– Good Friday– is an odd way to be victorious. But it is God’s way. The Son of Man MUST be lifted up.
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March 4, 2018 :: Lent 3B 2018  [John 2:13-22; I Corinthians 1:18-25; Psalm 19; Exodus 20:1-17]
The Ten Commnadments are abused by our culture and our society and in particular by certain politicians who want to put God’s brand on very human institutions. So there is frequently an effort to connect the Ten Commandments to our system of laws. Which, when you think about it, is really insulting to the Ten Commandments… You see, there is a deeper wisdom in the Ten Commandments. It’s not a code of criminal law or civil law.
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February 25, 2018 :: Lent 2B 2018  [Mark 8:31-38]
The cross means self-denial. Self-sacrifice. Or more precisely and more biblically the death of the self… Peter is human. You and I are human. Jesus in his temptation is human. We want to preserve self, glorify self, secure self, expand self, hang onto self. Because that is human. But that is not the way of God. That is not the way of Christ. That is not the way of the cross.
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February 18, 2018 :: Lent 1B 2018  [Genesis 9:8-17; Mark 1:9-15]
The word covenant occurs over 300 times in the Old Testament. Today– and on three other Sundays this Lent– our first reading will be about God’s covenants… These covenants are ways that God commits himself to us, sometimes asking for a commitment in return. But the very first one in the Bible– and the first one this Lent– is the covenant with Noah. The rainbow covenant. In which nothing is expected of mankind.
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February 4, 2018 :: Lectionary 5B 2018  [Isaiah 40:21-31; Mark 1:29-39]
We haven’t lost as much as the Jews of the sixth century B.C. But I think, collectively, as a congregation, and as part of a family of congregations– as part of a certain kind of Christian civic society we feel in our bones those words from Isaiah 40 this morning. Faint. Weary. Exhausted. Powerless. And we may wonder where God is.
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January 28, 2018 :: Lectionary 4B 2018  [1 Corinthians 8:1-13]
The argument that Paul is making throughout most of First Corinthians is about a conflict between knowledge and love. We often hear about and think about a conflict between faith and science. Or between religion and science. But Paul is talking about a struggle in the community between knowledge and love… when he puts knowledge in contrast with love is how a basic religious fact or truth can be used as a club to bully and beat other people.
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January 21, 2018 :: Lectionary 3B 2018  [Mark 1:14-20]
God in flesh made manifest. Somehow in those early days in Galilee, people grew enthusiastic about Jesus. They knew, somehow, that whatever he was up to, it was indeed good news for their lives, and that in Jesus– God in flesh made manifest– their own lives could be transformed and renewed.
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January 14, 2018 :: The Baptism of Our Lord (Observed)  [Genesis 1:1-5; Mark 1:1-12]
What the beginning of Jesus’ ministry tells us, according to Mark, is that the boundary between heaven and earth is being opened. A portal is being opened. Actually, is being torn open. Because of the persistent, tenacious love of God for the human race. And that’s a potentially happy thought for us.
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January 7, 2018 :: Epiphany (Observed)  [Matthew 2:1-12; Isaiah 60:1-6]
There is definitely a sense of wonder and magic in the Bible’s original presentation of the Christmas events. Even the name for these wise men, these so-called kings from the east– the Persian word magush became the Greek word magos, whose plural form is Magi. From which we get the word magic. So there is wonder and magic in the holiday season.
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