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Belonging First
Belonging First, John 10: 22-30 Sermon by Pastor Mark Siler 5/12/19 I think Jesus’ teaching today is another one of those moments that needs to be understood as a part of a bigger story.  In chapter 9 of John, Jesus meets a beggar who has been blind since birth.  Reflecting the accepted belief of the...
What a Waste
What a Waste Sermon by Rev. Brian Combs, 4/7/19   Utilitarianism is the 19th-century doctrine that what’s moral is always what’s most useful. The more benefit something can be to the most significant number of people, the more it should be pursued.  Every decision is based on the greatest good.  As culture and congregation have...
From Now On
“From Now On” 2 Corinthians 5: 16-21 Sermon by Pastor Mark Siler, 3/31/2019 If you think the early church had it all together, look no further than the congregation in Corinth. It was a mess. Paul went to this bustling cosmopolitan port city, pulled together a mixed group of Jews and Gentiles, rich and poor,...
Responding in Relationship
Responding in Relationship Sermon by Rev. Brian Combs, 2/24/2019 Redaction criticism is the study of editorial changes.  Scholarship that’s focused on how the biblical writers arranged, organized and even revised their reflections on God, sometimes well after the oral history was written down.  Some of the most cherished stories in scripture likely have redacted endings....
Jesus Wept
Jesus Wept Sermon by Rev. Combs 2/10/19 No book has a higher Christology, the study of Christ, than the Gospel of John.  His persistent focus on divinity is evident throughout: instead of being born to Mother Mary, Christ existed eternally; upon meeting someone for the first time, he knows their thoughts before they do; face-to-face...
A Good Death
A Good Death Sermon by Rev. Brian Combs 2/3/19 It is 92 miles from Nazareth to Jerusalem.  Considering the 3000 feet of elevation change, most travelers need three days to complete the journey.  But after giving birth six weeks earlier, her body still swollen and fragile, mother Mary likely took twice as long.  With Joseph,...
The Tutelage of John
Sermon by Rev. Brian Combs The season of Christmas concludes, not by packing up the ornaments or undecking the halls or dragging the tree out to the curb, but rather by showing up at the river.  At the Jordan, John the Baptizer is encircled by aristocrats who skipped their tee times in Jerusalem, Galilean farmers...
Shameless
Without Shame Sermon by Rev. Brian Combs, 1/6/18 Luke doesn’t want any distractions.  In his Gospel, the birth of Jesus doesn’t include a supernova exploding in the sky, a shining star high in the east that might keep us staring at the cosmos.  There’s no exotic magi, strange astrologers from even stranger lands that excite...
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