10 episodes

West Henrietta, NY

St. Mark's Lutheran St. Mark's Lutheran

    • Religion & Spirituality
    • 5.0 • 1 Rating

West Henrietta, NY

    Grace Upon Grace

    Grace Upon Grace

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    Biblical Text: John 17: 9-19







    The text is from Jesus prayer on Thursday of Holy Week in John. It is picked because this past Thursday was ascension day, the day 40 days after Easter when Christians mark Jesus’ return to the Father. 10 Days later, next Sunday, is Pentecost when the Spirit is poured out. This is promised is Jesus’ prayer. What this sermon does is first reflect on the foundation for the prayer. Jesus prefaces his petitions with some statements. 1) The World and the those he is praying for are at odds, 2) those he is praying for have been chosen by the Father (election) and 3) It is through the disciples he is praying for that he receives glory. Such is the foundation and purpose of the Christian life. In order to live it, because Jesus is leaving this world, he asks his Father to grant his disciples certain things. All these things Jesus considers that while he was in the World He gave them, and he knows that we need them. So he asks the Father.







    I have heard many preachers talk about these things, in particular the first one, as stuff the church should be working on. But that would turn them into laws, not graces. Jesus is asking his father for grace for his people. Grace to be one in the name. Which is true not the least in our baptisms. Grace to be kept from the Evil One. Which is true in that the Satan has been bound and has no way to destroy the church in this world. And Grace to consecrated in truth. Which is granted in the abiding word. Jesus’ prayer has been answered.

    • 29 min
    I Chose You

    I Chose You

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    Biblical Text: John 15:9-17







    The core assertion in the text is that you did not choose Christ, but Christ chose you. And there are three things that flow from that election: joy, love and friendship. Joy in that we have been given both the victory and a vocation. Love in that we are to emulate Christ’s love for us toward our neighbor. And friendship in that we have been invited into a deep union with God. We are no not slaves of the law, but we are friends in the gospel. We have been made children of the royal household who do not need to seek an audience with the law giver, but merely need to ask our dear Father.

    • 23 min
    Abiding in the Vine

    Abiding in the Vine

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    Biblical Text: John 15:1-8







    Why does faith feel attenuated or faint today? What is different today than even say 100 years ago? It is a question that I find myself asking over and over. And I think that that answer is what we refuse to take seriously. We will take faith itself seriously, sometimes so seriously it is just “the big lie” or maybe the necessary lie. We take works deadly seriously. Well maybe not Christians as much catechized on grace, but the world right now is all about justice which is nothing if not a demand for good works. But what we do not take seriously, as something worthy of contemplation in itself, in Himself, is God. The ground of all faith and works, the precursor to these things, is God. We are invited to abide in Christ. He is the vine and we are the branches. That is not an image of faith, but of union. And we feel that ache of desire without understanding what it is pointing at. We always get turned inward which finds nothing when the object of desire is outside of us.

    • 25 min
    Sheep and Wolves, Shepherds and Hired Hands

    Sheep and Wolves, Shepherds and Hired Hands

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    Biblical Text: John 10:11-18







    This sermon attempts to us John’s Good Shepherd passage as an icon, an image through which we can see reality. The reality in this case is who the Good Shepherd is which is pictured clearly. It also includes the images of others on the Spiritual field – wolves and hired hands. It is in the comparison that the full goodness of the Shepherd is clear.

    • 24 min
    Satan’s Peace/Christ’s Peace

    Satan’s Peace/Christ’s Peace

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    Biblical Text: Luke 24:36-49







    The third Sunday after Easter is usually the resurrection account from Luke. Everybody’s favorite is the road to Emmaus. It has that air of mystery that tickles. But in year B you get Jesus’ appearance to the disciples after that. This appearance mirrors the 2nd Sunday’s account from John. Jesus appears and show the disciples his hands and feet. And while faith is always a point, Luke’s emphasis is on the peace of Christ and how we can be sure of it. What starts with the mystery of the road to Emmaus is explained by Jesus as the fulfillment of the promises of God. God desires us to know his peace which is distinct from that offered by Satan in that God is always revealing more of himself. This sermon looks at that revelation in the resurrection light.

    • 20 min
    Sedes Doctriae (Seat of Doctrine)

    Sedes Doctriae (Seat of Doctrine)

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    Biblical Text: John 20:19-31







    Within the larger Thomas story is one of the the seed beds of Christian Doctrine. There are three places in scripture where Jesus gives to certain people the authority to bind and to loose sins. And it is really all three of them working together that gives us the full picture of God’s “superabundant grace and goodness.” This sermon starts from the seat in this text and preaches the forgiveness of sins specifically understood through the Office of the Keys and the Pastoral Office. With special attention paid to God’s both/and when we often desire an either/or.

    • 21 min

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