Tag Archives: peace

Daily Lectionary Podcast – Ezekiel 39:1-10, 17-29 and Romans 7:21-8:17

Ezekiel 39:1-10, 17-29
Romans 7:21-8:17
The Divine Warrior declares peace, the War within our own members

Passion Absurdities

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Text: Luke 19:28-48, Luke 23:1-25
Full Sermon Draft

The sermon is somewhat pointillist. There is one theme, the absurdities in the Palm Sunday and Trial before Pilate sections of the Gospel according to Luke; and how those same absurdities play in our day. That choice of structure seemed fitting. Luke tells a story full of irony and absurd details. The modern world is the one that ceased making sense captured as the arts turned from form and beauty to abstraction and shock.

But of course the over-riding absurdity of the Palms and Passion is why did He do it? For a bunch of inconsequential dust. For creatures that strut about in stubborn defiance and invincible ignorance. Christ took to the cross to redeem all the absurdity. To redeem our absurdity.

And to compound it, he left us as His ambassadors. He gave us a roll to play. The only question is if we know the things that make for peace.

A Specific Peace

The word peace in the Gospel according to Luke is a big word. This was the First Sunday in Advent and the gospel lesson is often the triumphal entry or Palm Sunday. The theological theme of the that text is the Kingship of Jesus. No different in Luke, but Luke adds this strange cry from the crowd leading Jesus into Jerusalem. “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest! (Luk 19:38 ESV)” Did you catch the strange word? Peace in Heaven. The entire phrase is an echo of the Angels at Christmas, but instead of peace on earth, now it is peace in heaven. And if you do the word study, roughly midway through Luke you find this, “Do you think that I have come to give peace on earth? No, I tell you, but rather division. (Luk 12:51 ESV)”

The peace of God is not a generic peace. The Angels were never singing just “peace on earth”. They sang “on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased! (Luk 2:14 ESV)” The specific peace is the Kingdom of God, the Lordship of Jesus Christ. The specific peace is one imposed…through grace. You can take it or you can leave it, but you can’t work for it. You can’t earn the peace. The Father just declared it. The war was over on the cross.

The only question is our response. Do we accept the peace, or continue an insurgent war. Which Kingdom do we choose, the Kingdom of this World, or the Kingdom of Heaven. The tyrant Satan or the humble Christ. Choose your prince.

Stories of Flesh and Blood

Text: Ephesians: 2:11-22
Full Draft of Sermon

Had one of the best comments possible I think – a 4 year old at McDonald’s after service commented on the sermon.

The stories in the world today – especially in the aftermath of yet another mass shooting – are stories of alienation and loss. They are stories of searching. Sometimes finding. Sometimes not and remaining lost. Those stories play with a deep truth. Sin alienates. It is the cause and the manifestation of our lostness. The artists and the church actually agree on the diagnosis, but they disagree on the prescription. The church actually has an answer. It is found in the incarnation…in the flesh and blood of Christ.