— Caravaggio (@artcaravaggio) November 30, 2018
Category : Preaching / Homiletics
Yesterday we had our Bishop at Sullivan's Island to preach and do a service of Confirmation. Check out his sermon or one of the others wherever you get your podcast or on our website: https://t.co/x5tXjxsvCN pic.twitter.com/YbI1TAbj8T
— Holy Cross SC (@HolyCross_SC) December 10, 2018
A Fleming Rutledge Sermon on Mark 13 (the Synoptic Apocalypse) for Pre-Advent and the First Sunday of Advent
Let me illustrate this sequence by quoting from the memoirs of Mr. Andrew Carnegie, the famous Scottish-born tycoon who made his fortune in America. Raised as a Presbyterian, he became suspicious of religion. When he read Darwin’s theories of evolution, the great philanthropist received what he thought was a revelation. In his memoirs he wrote (this was during the Gilded Age, before the world wars):
…I remember that light came as in a flood and all was clear. Not only had I got rid of theology and the supernatural, but I had found the truth…“All is well since all grows better,” became my motto, my true source of comfort. Man…has risen to the higher forms [and there can be no] conceivable end to [man’s] march to perfection.
I don’t believe anyone can read that with a straight face today. And indeed, as it happens, those were not the last words from Mr. Carnegie. The last paragraph of his autobiography was written as World War I broke out. He reread what he had written earlier, and here’s how he responded to it:
As I read this [what he had previously written] today what a change! The world convulsed by war as never before! Men slaying each other like wild beasts! I dare not relinquish all hope.
The manuscript breaks off abruptly. He never finished the autobiography.
In a certain way, this illustrates the turn in biblical interpretation that I’m describing. The horrors of the two World Wars caused a widespread change in the way that serious people understood history. For biblical interpreters, it caused a change in the way the apocalyptic passages in the Bible were read. It was noted that Jesus said, “Behold, I have told you all things beforehand.”
Apocalyptic writing came out of a catastrophe. The Hebrew people—the Israelites—were the people of blessing. They were the people favored by God, who had promised them a future of safety and prosperity. But then they were overwhelmed and conquered and forced into exile in the far distant, pagan Babylonian empire.
Some of you wanted to hear more about the sermon that begins, "Why is Jesus talking like this?"
I posted it on my website in my Ruminations, along with other Advent material.https://t.co/x1ZrLFkocL
— Fleming Rutledge (@flemingrut) November 30, 2018
Christ the King statue in the Carmelites church in Dobling, Vienna, Austria. By architect Richard Jordan and artist Ludwig Schadler from the year 1933 pic.twitter.com/IDc9HquFT0
— Pictures of Churches (@ChurchPictures8) November 26, 2018
— Kendall Harmon (@KendallHarmon6) November 14, 2018
Saturday Food for Thought (II)–Frederick Buechner on what happens in the Moment right before a Minister begins Preaching
So the hymn comes to a close with an unsteady amen, and the organist gestures the choir to sit down. Fresh from breakfast with his wife and children and a quick run through of the Sunday papers, the preacher climbs the steps to the pulpit with his sermon in hand. He hikes his black robe at the knee so he will not trip over it on the way up. His mouth is a little dry. He has cut himself shaving. He feels as if he has swallowed an anchor. If it weren’t for the honor of the thing, he would just as soon be somewhere else. In the front pews the old ladies turn up their hearing aids, and a young lady slips her six-year old a Lifesaver and a Magic Marker. A college sophomore home from vacation, who is there because he was dragged there, slumps forward with his chin in his hand. The vice- president of a bank who twice this week has seriously contemplated suicide places his hymnal in the rack. A pregnant girl feels the life stir inside her. A high-school math teacher, who for twenty years has managed to keep his homosexuality a secret for the most part, even from himself, creases his order of service with his thumbnail and tucks it under his knee. The preacher pulls a little chord that turns the lectern light and deals out his note cards like a riverboat gambler. The stakes have never been higher. Two minutes from now he may have lost his listeners completely to their own thoughts, but at this minute he has them in the palm of his hand. The silence in the shabby church is deafening because everybody is listening to it. Everybody is listening including even himself. Everybody knows the kind of things he has told them before and not told them, but who knows what this time, out of the silence he will tell them?
–Frederick Buechner, Telling the Truth: The Gospel as Tragedy, Comedy, and Fairy Tale (New York: HarperOne, 1977), page 22, almost quoted by yours truly today in an ordination sermon
(CT Pastors) Tim Keller: Preaching Hell in a Tolerant Age–Clarity and compassion on Christianity’s toughest doctrine
My heart sank when a young college student said, “I’ve gone to church all my life, but I don’t think I can believe in a God like this.” Her tone was more sad than defiant, but her willingness to stay and talk showed that her mind was open.
Usually all the questions are pitched to me, and I respond as best I can. But on this occasion people began answering one another.
An older businesswoman said, “Well, I’m not much of a churchgoer, and I’m in some shock now. I always disliked the very idea of hell, but I never thought about it as a measure of what God was willing to endure in order to love me.”
Then a mature Christian made a connection with a sermon a month ago on Jesus at Lazarus’ tomb in John 11. “The text tells us that Jesus wept,” he said, “yet he was also extremely angry at evil. That’s helped me. He is not just an angry God or a weeping, loving God—he’s both. He doesn’t only judge evil, but he also takes the hell and judgment himself for us on the cross.”
The second woman nodded, “Yes. I always thought hell told me about how angry God was with us, but I didn’t know it also told me about how much he was willing to suffer and weep for us. I never knew how much hell told me about Jesus’ love. It’s very moving.”
Tim Keller gave the single best piece of advice I've ever heard about doubt.
"Doubt your doubts."
I am resolved to doubt my doubts, and I am glad to doubt Steven Furtick's doubts as well.
— Owen Strachan (@ostrachan) August 11, 2018
Spurgeon’s friends and even casual acquaintances remarked on his hearty laughter. His humor also found expression in his sermons and writings, for which he was sometimes criticized. Spurgeon responded that if his critics only knew how much humor he suppressed, they would keep silent.
At the same time, Spurgeon’s life was saturated with suffering. We know about his sufferings intimately owing to his frequent and candid descriptions of them.
What torments did Spurgeon suffer? How did he reconcile his painful experiences with his view of a gracious God?
God is guiding your marriage. Marriage is more than your love for each other. It has a higher dignity and power, for it is God’s holy ordinance, through which He wills to perpetuate the human race till the end of time. In your love you see only your two selves in the world, but in marriage you are a link in the chain of the generations, which God causes to come and to pass away to His glory, and calls into His kingdom. In your love you see only the heaven of your own happiness, but in marriage you are placed at a post of responsibility towards the world and mankind. Your love is your own private possession, but marriage is more that something personal – it is a status, an office. Just as it is the crown, and not merely the will to rule, that makes the king, so it is marriage, and not merely your love for each other, that joins you together in the sight of God and man. As you first gave the ring to one another and have now received it a second time from the hand of the pastor, so love comes from you, but marriage from above, from God. As high as God is above man, so high are the sanctity the rights, and the promise of marriage above the sanctity, the rights, and the promise of love. It is not your love that sustains the marriage, but from now on, the marriage that sustains your love.
God makes your marriage indissoluble. ‘What therefore God has joined together, let no man put asunder’ (Matthew 19:6). God joins you together in marriage; it is His act, not yours. Do not confound your love for one another with God. God makes your marriage indissoluble, and protects it from every danger that may threaten it from within and without; He wills to be the guarantor of its indissolubility. It is a blessed thing to know that no power on earth, no temptation, no human frailty can dissolve what God holds together; indeed, anyone who knows that may say confidently: What God has joined together, can no man put asunder. Free from all anxiety that is always a characteristic of love, you can now say to each other with complete and confident assurance: We can never lose each other now; by the will of God we belong to each other till death.
Read it all ([emphasis mine] quoted by yours truly in the morning sermon).
— In Our Time (@BBCInOurTime) September 27, 2018
This sure is matter of love; but came there any good to us by it? There did. For our conception being the root as it were, the very groundsill of our nature; that He might go to the root and repair of our nature from the very foundation, thither He went; that what had been there defiled and decayed by the first Adam, might by the Second be cleansed and set right again. That had our conception been stained, by Him therefore, primum ante omnia,to be restored again. He was not idle all the time He was an embyro all the nine months He was in the womb; but then and there He even ate out the core of corruption that cleft to our nature and us, and made both us and it an unpleasing object in the sight of God.
And what came of this? We who were abhorred by God, filii irae was our title, were by this means made beloved in Him. He cannot, we may be sure, account evil of that nature, that is now become the nature of His own Son is now no less than ours. Nay farther, given this privilege to the children of such as are in Him, though but of one parent believing, that they are not as the seed of two infidels, but are in a degree holy, eo ipso; and have a farther right to the laver of regeneration, to sanctify them throughout by the renewing of the Holy Ghost. This honour is to us by the dishonour of Him; this the good by Christ an embyro.
–From a sermon preached before King James, at Whitehall, on Sunday, the Twenty-fifth of December, 1614
Lancelot Andrews was a Bishop of Winchester who was buried in the Cathedral in 1626. Asides from working on the King James Bible, he preached the first sermon marking the anniversary of the Gunpowder Plot. pic.twitter.com/Qn9u1pzunj
— SCHeritageEvents (@SCHeritageEvent) November 24, 2017
And in the morning, a great while before day, he rose and went out to a lonely place, and there he prayed (Mark 1:35).
"O Lord Jesus Christ Son of God, Have mercy upon me, a sinner! Amen." (The Jesus Prayer) pic.twitter.com/2ZfOkzAVmS
— CarmeloftheHolyFace (@HolyFaceCarmel) August 31, 2016
The striking and appropriate terms in which the prophet Isaiah depicts the character and offices of the Messiah, have procured for him, by way of eminence, the title of the Evangelical Prophet. He exhibits a glowing but faithful picture of the character of Christ, and all the humiliating and all the triumphant events of his life. In the chapter which contains my text, the prophet has dipped his pencil in the softest colours, and draws a portrait of the Saviour, which, while it conveys to us the most exalted ideas of his character, is calculated to awaken our tenderest and liveliest sympathy.
Let us then contemplate the character of Christ, as delineated by the prophet under the emblem of “a lamb brought to the slaughter,” that our penitence may be awakened, our gratitude enlivened, and our souls warmed with the ardent emotions of love and duty.
Under the character of a “lamb brought to the slaughter,” we are led to consider,
The innocence of Christ;
His tenderness and compassion;
And, finally, to consider him as the victim for our sins.
Kendall Harmon’s Sunday Sermon–How are we as Christians to understand Work? (For Labor Day) https://t.co/39gSLFKZAO #theology #pneumatology #christianity #southcarolina #preaching #parishministry #LaborDay2018 pic.twitter.com/RFmaX9F7Y7
— Kendall Harmon (@KendallHarmon6) September 4, 2018
— Kendall Harmon (@KendallHarmon6) September 3, 2018