Seventh Sunday of Easter John 17:20-26

We go once again to the upper room in Jerusalem where Jesus is with his disciples on the evening of his betrayal and trial. Whatever he has to say to them, he must say quickly. He expects them to continue what he has started, living out his mission and message.  Jesus knows that his time is short.  He looks ahead to the time when he will no longer be bodily present, the time when the completion of his mission will depend on the disciples.  He prays for their unity, that the world may “know that you have sent me.”  That’s a big expectation.Continue Reading

Sixth Sunday of Easter John 14:23-29

Some of the stories in the New Testament make me wonder about the disciples. Were they any more religious or spiritual than we are?  I mean, these were handpicked people who spent three years with Jesus.  But I wonder about them.Continue Reading

Fifth Sunday of Easter John 13:31-35

In his last week in Jerusalem, Jesus knew he did not have long. His path had become irreversible.   Judas had already arranged betrayal.  Jesus was headed to Jerusalem’s street of tears, the way of the cross. In these last hours, he wanted to be sure the disciples understood that his whole life and teaching came down to one commandment.  Love one another.Continue Reading

Fourth Sunday of Easter John 10: 22-30

On Easter day, we renewed our faith in the resurrection, and we praised God’s presence in the world in Christ Jesus.   By now we have most likely put the day away for another year. In the meantime, the resurrection of Jesus seems to have little connection with the situations of daily life. That is, if God is so in charge that he overcame death in the resurrection of Jesus Christ, why do we still have undeserved, unpredicted, and unfathomable tragedy.Continue Reading

Third Sunday of Easter John 21:1-19

If we had to answer why we are here, we would likely say that worship is important. While there is no guarantee that worship will bring us close to God, it is ahead of whatever is in second place. We are here because we expect to make contact with God in scripture, sermon, praying, singing, in the fellowship of like-minded fellow Christians, affirming our baptism, breaking bread together.Continue Reading

Second Sunday of Easter John 20:19-31

They watched the crucifixion and fled. Jesus was buried.  They agonized through another day of utter despair.   Now it was the evening of the third day and the disciples were again in the upper room where they had celebrated Passover with Jesus.  They didn’t understand when he gave them his body, first in the bread, then, on the cross.  They had been changed, not only as individuals, but also as a group. Continue Reading

Easter Sunday John 20:1-18

“Christ is Risen!” He is Risen indeed!”

Mary Magdalene was totally unprepared for his body to be missing. Some disciples came and looked. They did not understand, and simply went home.   Mary did not recognize him immediately.

Can we put ourselves in the scene?Continue Reading

Maundy Thursday, March 24, 2016 John 13:1-17; 31-35

I like church celebrations and festivals, and would feel cheated if I had to miss worship on those days. My favorite holy day is Maundy Thursday.  All other holy days or festivals come and go, and when all the rituals and exclamations are over, we go back to life pretty much as it was before.  But Maundy Thursday rivets my attention day after day, one season after another, year in and year out, giving me a challenge which I never measure up to.Continue Reading

Palm Sunday

The Passion of Our Lord According to Luke

Luke 22:1 — 23:56

Fifth Sunday in Lent John 12: 1 – 8

Someone who had lived a long time told the new preacher,  “We know about our sin and guilt.  Tell us about God’s love and forgiveness.” The story of Mary and her ointment tells us all we need to know about sin and guilt,  and the reality of God’s love and forgiveness.  Continue Reading