Happenings

Sermons by Pastor Walter Snyder plus announcements, articles, videos, and anything else that doesn’t fit Ask the Pastor or the Luther Library.





28 September 2014

Sermon: Proper 21A (OT)

28 September AD 2014
Pentecost 16

Theme: A Matter of Life and Death

Ezekiel 18:2 Summary: “God isn’t fair!” we often complain. If we thought more about it, though, we might instead complain, “God is fair!” Through the prophet, He flatly claims that He rewards good and punishes evil. What could be more fair?

If we’re honest with ourselves and with Him, we see that most of our requests for divine fairness are actually requests for leniency, excuses, and blame-shifting. When we realize that we are never fully free of the stain of sin and recognize that we sin daily, we begin to see that asking God to treat us fairly might not be in our own best interests. We dare not ask God to pay us what our works have earned, for “the wages of sin is death. (Romans 6:23)”

However, God assigned full blame for all wickedness to His beloved Son. He exercised His justice — His fair treatment of evil — by cursing Jesus, sending Him to the cross to suffer and die for all the sins of all people. All who believe that this salvation is their gift from God then receive full credit for Christ’s righteousness.

He calls Israel (and us) to do the impossible: “Make yourselves a new heart and a new spirit!” Those who sorrow over their sins then are led by the Spirit to cry out with the Psalmist to our merciful God: “Create in me a clean heart ... renew a right spirit.... (Psalm 51:10)” We realize that such heart surgery is no do-it-yourself project but that to succeed, it must be accomplished by Him.

Recognizing the gift that is ours in Christ, we receive it in thanksgiving. We trust that because the living God is also the God of the living, we who have new life in Christ will keep it even to life everlasting. In Christ, in Baptism, in the preaching of the Word, in Absolution, and in the Lord’s Supper, God puts to death our old, sinful selves and grants forgiveness of sins, life, and salvation to all who believe.

The Death of the Wicked Text: The word of the Lord came to me: “What do you mean by repeating this proverb concerning the land of Israel, ‘The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge’?

“As I live, declares the Lord God, this proverb shall no more be used by you in Israel. Behold, all souls are mine; the soul of the father as well as the soul of the son is mine: the soul who sins shall die....

“Yet you say, ‘The way of the Lord is not just.’ Hear now, O house of Israel: Is my way not just? Is it not your ways that are not just?

“When a righteous person turns away from his righteousness and does injustice, he shall die for it; for the injustice that he has done he shall die. Again, when a wicked person turns away from the wickedness he has committed and does what is just and right, he shall save his life. Because he considered and turned away from all the transgressions that he had committed, he shall surely live; he shall not die.

“Yet the house of Israel says, ‘The way of the Lord is not just.’ O house of Israel, are my ways not just? Is it not your ways that are not just?

“Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, declares the Lord God. Repent and turn from all your transgressions, lest iniquity be your ruin. Cast away from you all the transgressions that you have committed, and make yourselves a new heart and a new spirit!

“Why will you die, O house of Israel? For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Lord God; so turn, and live.” Ezekiel 18:1-4, 25-32

Scripture quoted from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Audio: Click to hear the MP3 of A Matter of Life and Death.

Other Readings: Psalm 25:1-10; Romans 13:1-10; Matthew 21:23-27 (28-32)

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21 September 2014

Sermon: St. Matthew Day (Gospel)

The Feast of Saint Matthew
21 September AD 2014

Theme: Your Attending Physician

Call of Matthew Summary: The world finds many ways to ridicule the Church and us “weak” and “foolish” Christians. It dares us to throw off the shackles of Christianity, to stand up on our own two feet, and to stride bravely through life, overcoming the odds and prevailing over all.

The problem? This scenario only works as long as we think ourselves to be hale, hearty, and intrinsically good. Only when we think that we’re already righteous do we miss seeing the need for a righteousness that comes from outside ourselves.

As the Lord said, it’s the sick who need healing — and Scripture teaches us just how unwell we are by nature. Indeed, we are sick unto death and unable to heal ourselves. We need the constant ministrations of Jesus Christ, our Attending Physician, who allowed Himself to suffer death that He might bring us everlasting life. The healings that He worked during His earthly ministry testify to the still greater healing that is ours by faith in Him.

Christ comes, both as our Healer and, in Word and Sacraments, as our Medicine. The balm of Baptism washes us clean and brings healing. He fills our ears with health and peace in the Absolution and in Gospel preaching. He is the very medicine of everlasting life as we eat and drink His body and blood in Holy Communion.

Ruiz: Christ Consoled Text: As Jesus passed on from there, he saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax booth, and he said to him, “Follow me.” And he rose and followed him.

And as Jesus reclined at table in the house, behold, many tax collectors and sinners came and were reclining with Jesus and his disciples.

And when the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?”

But when he heard it, he said, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. Go and learn what this means, ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.’ For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.” Matthew 9:9-13

Scripture quoted from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Audio: Click to hear the MP3 of Your Attending Physician.

Other Readings: Psalm 119:33-40; Ezekiel 2:8-3:11; Ephesians 4:7-16

Notes: For some reason, a few people have had problems trying to play the inline audio if Windows Media is their default MP3 player. If this occurs, you can either change to QuickTime or another default browser player, copy and paste the link directly into a selected player, or download it to your computer, where it seems to work regardless of which player. Several folks have suggested VLC Player from VideoLAN.

Ecclesiastical line art by Ed Riojas. His Graphics for the Church Year (1-Year and 3-Year Lectionaries) are available for for purchase on CD or by ZIP download from the Higher Things Store. Painting Cristo Consolado por los Ángeles by Juan Patricio Morlete Ruiz (1713 – 72). Oil on copper, 25 3/8 x 33 5/8 inches (64.5 x 85.5 cm). Pinacoteca Virreinal, Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes, Consejo Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes, Mexico.

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14 September 2014

Sermon: Holy Cross Day (OT)

14 September AD 2014

Theme: Lifted Up and Life-Giving

Christ Crucified Summary: As Moses raised up the serpent in the wilderness, so the Son of Man was raised up (cf. John 3:14).

We may speak of “uplifting” experiences but only Christ raised up on the cross can elevate us out of the sinful depths into which we were born and back into which we regularly sink. He does this not only to save us but also that we, His Church, might be instruments involved in the uplifting of others.

Text: From Mount Hor they set out by the way to the Red Sea, to go around the land of Edom.

And the people became impatient on the way. And the people spoke against God and against Moses, “Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? For there is no food and no water, and we loathe this worthless food.”

Bronze Serpent Then the Lord sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people, so that many people of Israel died. And the people came to Moses and said, “We have sinned, for we have spoken against the Lord and against you. Pray to the Lord, that he take away the serpents from us.”

So Moses prayed for the people.

And the Lord said to Moses, “Make a fiery serpent and set it on a pole, and everyone who is bitten, when he sees it, shall live.”

So Moses made a bronze serpent and set it on a pole. And if a serpent bit anyone, he would look at the bronze serpent and live. Numbers 21:4-9

Scripture quoted from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Audio: Click to hear the MP3 of Lifted Up and Life-Giving.

Other Readings: Psalm 40:1-11; 1 Corinthians 1:18-25; John 12:20-33

Notes: For some reason, a few people have had problems trying to play the inline audio if Windows Media is their default MP3 player. If this occurs, you can either change to QuickTime or another default browser player, copy and paste the link directly into a selected player, or download it to your computer, where it seems to work regardless of which player. Several folks have suggested VLC Player from VideoLAN.

Ecclesiastical art by Ed Riojas. Graphics for the Church Year (1-Year and 3-Year Lectionaries) are available for for purchase on CD or by ZIP download from the Higher Things Store.

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07 September 2014

Sermon: Proper 18A (OT)

7 September AD 2014
Pentecost 13

Theme: The Watchman’s Warning

Ezekiel 33 Summary: Few of us enjoy being bearers of bad news, particularly if our message might jeopardize our relationships with others. Yet the Lord often called upon His prophets to do just that in calling sinful people to repentance.

This practice continued in the New Testament, as Peter, Paul, and the other apostles at times had to confront and rebuke sinners. It still continues today as Christ’s pastors proclaim the Law, warning sinners of the wrath to come.

And though most pastors would rather get along peaceably with their congregations, they’re called to watch out for their flocks and to proclaim not only the sweet, saving Gospel but also the fullness of God’s wrath over man’s wickedness and His impending judgment of our sins.

Therefore, Christian pastors remain as watchmen for the Church. Their message is constant: Jesus will return in glory to judge all the earth; those who believe in Him will be saved by grace, those who don’t will be condemned for the wickedness of their works resulting from their rejection of Christ’s full and free forgiveness. Since we don’t know the hour or the day, our watchmen remind us to be constant in faith, always ready for the end of time or for our own individual deaths.

Text: [The Lord said,] “So you, son of man, I have made a watchman for the house of Israel. Whenever you hear a word from my mouth, you shall give them warning from me.

“If I say to the wicked, O wicked one, you shall surely die, and you do not speak to warn the wicked to turn from his way, that wicked person shall die in his iniquity, but his blood I will require at your hand.

“But if you warn the wicked to turn from his way, and he does not turn from his way, that person shall die in his iniquity, but you will have delivered your soul.” Ezekiel 33:7-9

Scripture quoted from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Audio: Click to hear the MP3 of The Watchman’s Warning.

Other Readings: Psalm 32:1-7; Romans 13:1-10; Matthew 18:1-20

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03 September 2014

Sermon: Ephesians 2:11-16

High School Chapel Service from 3 September AD 2014
Week of Pentecost 12

Title: Recreated (MP3 Audio)

Summary: The Creation is broken, as are we creatures living therein. Both observation and revelation testify to this ugly truth. Indeed, we are so far away from what God intended us to be that His image is illegible to Him, to others, and to ourselves.

Christ came to redeem mankind and to usher in the New Creation. By His suffering and death and through His Word and Spirit, He makes us citizens of the New even as we continue to live (and die) in the Old.

He unites mankind’s disparate parties, not only Jews and Greeks but all of us divided by age, geography, language, culture and the like, into one body — His body, the Church. And just as He re-creates each of us individually, so also He remakes the entire body, a task completed when we are raised from the dead and gathered to live in His presence evermore.

Ephesians 2:10 Text: Therefore remember that at one time you Gentiles in the flesh, called “the uncircumcision” by what is called the circumcision, which is made in the flesh by hands — remember that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.

But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.

For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility by abolishing the law of commandments expressed in ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace, and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility. Ephesians 2:11-16

Hymn of the Day: Here are the introductory stanza and that for September of O God Who Dwells in Heaven’s Height, which I wrote for this academic year at SPLHS:

  • O God who dwells in heaven’s height,
    Who, in Your image, once formed Man—
    Cast out sin’s gloom by Christ, our Light;
    Restore us to Creation’s plan.

    Although into disharmony
    We fell in sin, Your image lost,
    You raise us recreated, free—
    Praise Christ, who paid the frightful cost.
Hymn text © 2014 Walter P. Snyder. May not be used or reproduced without permission.

Scripture quoted from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Audio: Click to hear the MP3 of Recreated, preached at Saint Paul Lutheran High School, Concordia, Missouri.

Note: For some reason, a few people have had problems trying to play the inline audio if Windows Media is their default MP3 player. If this occurs, you can either change to QuickTime or another default browser player, copy and paste the link directly into a selected player, or download it to your computer, where it seems to work regardless of which player. Several folks have suggested VLC Player from VideoLAN.

About the Service and the School: The theme for the 2014 – 15 academic year at St. Paul Lutheran High School is We Are God’s Workmanship, taken from Ephesians 2:10. Under this theme are monthly emphases and weekly foci. September’s emphasis is “We Are God’s Workmanship in Christ Jesus,” with an emphasis on Christology. Time is at a premium for the SPLHS chapels, so I tried to make a few quick, concise Law applications both to students and to teachers and to bring the Gospel’s forgiveness and Christ’s encouragement to each.

While certainly a Lutheran educational institution, St. Paul is also a mission field. Not only does it admit academically qualified Lutherans, the school also welcomes a number of other Christians as well as non-Christians — even some atheists. A high percentage of students come from other lands, so chapel speakers must tailor their messages age-appropriately while remaining mindful of those unskilled with English, uncomfortable with Christianity, or both. The school regularly enrolls American students and others born in Slovakia, Norway, China, Madagascar, Japan, Vietnam, Hong Kong, and elsewhere.

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31 August 2014

Sermon: Proper 17A (OT)

31 August AD 2014
Pentecost 12

Theme: Food for Faith

Take Up Your Cross Summary: We Christians often wonder why a loving God doesn’t provide smooth sailing throughout our lives. God loves us. We love God. Why so many problems?

Much of the trouble comes because the more we trust God and the more we display faith in Christ, the more the world hates us as it does its Creator and Redeemer. This world and its prince cannot abide either the bitterness of the Law or the sweet taste of the Gospel. Sinners don’t want to be told that they’re sinful. Do-it-yourself types hate hearing that everything is done for them and that there’s nothing they can do to work their way into God’s good graces.

To all our complaints and all of the world’s resistance, God offers nothing except Jesus Christ and Him crucified. He invites us to continue eating the Bread of Life come down from heaven as we receive Jesus in Word and Sacrament. He tells us that as the world hates His Son, so it hates those who trust in Him for salvation. Yet He promises to be with us always, to strengthen our faith, and to lead us from a life of pain and trouble into the bliss of life everlasting.

The Church continually brings us to align our hearts with this teaching and to feed solely on Christ, as when we pray the traditional Collect for the Word: Blessed Lord, who caused all Holy Scriptures to be written for our learning: Grant that we may so hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, that we may embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of everlasting life; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

Food for Faith Text: O Lord, you know; remember me and visit me, and take vengeance for me on my persecutors. In your forbearance take me not away; know that for your sake I bear reproach.

Your words were found, and I ate them, and your words became to me a joy and the delight of my heart, for I am called by your name, O Lord, God of hosts.

I did not sit in the company of revelers, nor did I rejoice; I sat alone, because your hand was upon me, for you had filled me with indignation. Why is my pain unceasing, my wound incurable, refusing to be healed? Will you be to me like a deceitful brook, like waters that fail?

Therefore thus says the Lord: “If you return, I will restore you, and you shall stand before me. If you utter what is precious, and not what is worthless, you shall be as my mouth.

They shall turn to you, but you shall not turn to them. And I will make you to this people a fortified wall of bronze; they will fight against you, but they shall not prevail over you, for I am with you to save you and deliver you, declares the Lord. I will deliver you out of the hand of the wicked, and redeem you from the grasp of the ruthless.” Jeremiah 15:15-21

Scripture quoted from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Audio: Click to hear the MP3 of Food for Faith.

Other Readings: Psalm 26; Romans 12:9-21; Matthew 16:21-28

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30 August 2014

Sermon: Proper 17A (Gospel)

30 August AD 2014
Pentecost 12

Theme: Second-Guessing God

Take Up Your Cross Summary: Peter wasn’t the first to try telling God how to do things, nor would he be the last. We also like to imagine that we know better than our Creator how to arrange our lives. We attempt to find was to cooperate with our Redeemer in gaining our eternal rest. We try to guide the Spirit rather than letting Him guide us.

However, there was only one way that Jesus could save sinful, fallen mankind: He needed to “go to Jerusalem and suffer many things ... and be killed” in order to make propitiation for our sins. He had to be raised up on the third day that we might be justified.

Similarly, there is only one way to benefit from His sacrifice and His resurrection: We must believe that He did it all for us and that nothing remains to be done to accomplish our salvation. And as believers, we know that our works accomplish nothing on our behalf. Instead, they testify to what He did for us while also bringing His love to our neighbors in need.

Get Behind Me, Satan Text: From that time Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.

And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him, saying, “Far be it from you, Lord! This shall never happen to you.”

But he turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me. For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.”

Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul? For the Son of Man is going to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay each person according to what he has done.

“Truly, I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.” Matthew 16:21-28

Scripture quoted from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Audio: Click to hear the MP3 of Second-Guessing God.

Other Readings: Psalm 26; Jeremiah 15:15-21; Romans 12:9-21

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24 August 2014

Sermon: Proper 16A (OT)

24 August AD 2014
Pentecost 11

Theme: Salvation Forever

Earth from Space Summary: Some people are afraid of being caught in a fragile, falling-apart world while others head blindly onward, unable or unwilling to realize that their own lives and this entire Creation are transitory and failing. God speaks to both parties.

He shakes those who imagine that their place in the cosmos and, indeed, the cosmos itself are unshakeably permanent. He warns of death and decay and urges them to abandon false gods and imaginary stability before they fall into eternal doom. For those who know and dread Creation’s impermanence, He promises to be their Rock and their Redeemer.

Even as Israel was hewn from the quarry of God’s faithful Word, so also all who believe in Jesus are carved from Him, reshaped and reformed by Christ’s forgiveness. We who trust in the Son and confess Him as our anointed Savior are blessed, for we have the same divine revelation from the Father that came upon Saint Peter. This is no earthly, flesh-and-blood knowledge but instead comes to us by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Balancing Rock Text: “Listen to me, you who pursue righteousness, you who seek the Lord: look to the rock from which you were hewn, and to the quarry from which you were dug. Look to Abraham your father and to Sarah who bore you; for he was but one when I called him, that I might bless him and multiply him.

“For the Lord comforts Zion; he comforts all her waste places and makes her wilderness like Eden, her desert like the garden of the Lord; joy and gladness will be found in her, thanksgiving and the voice of song.

“Give attention to me, my people, and give ear to me, my nation; for a law will go out from me, and I will set my justice for a light to the peoples. My righteousness draws near, my salvation has gone out, and my arms will judge the peoples; the coastlands hope for me, and for my arm they wait.

“Lift up your eyes to the heavens, and look at the earth beneath; for the heavens vanish like smoke, the earth will wear out like a garment, and they who dwell in it will die in like manner; but my salvation will be forever, and my righteousness will never be dismayed.” Isaiah 51:1-6

Scripture quoted from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Audio: Click to hear the MP3 of Salvation Forever.

Other Readings: Psalm 138; Romans 11:33-12:8; Matthew 16:13-20

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17 August 2014

Sermon: Proper 15A (Gospel)

17 August AD 2014
Pentecost 10

Theme: Crumbs for the Dogs

Riojas: Dog Under the Table Summary: While long-time and life-long Christians sometimes get a feeling of entitlement, Jesus and the Canaanite woman remind us that we are all beggars before God. Not one of us merits mercy from the Lord, the son of David.

However, Jesus showers mercy on us. Rather than treating us lower than the lowest dogs, He chose to have compassion and to take our sins, our weaknesses, and our sorrows upon Himself. His Father assigns to each of us the value of the Son’s body and blood, His life and death.

Yet we too often treat forgiveness of sins, salvation, and eternal life as mere crumbs and grumble that God doesn’t give us more. In so doing, we forget that without Christ’s forgiveness, we would remain outside the gates of life, unable to join the eternal heavenly banquet. We would be forever numbered among “the dogs and sorcerers and the sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices falsehood. (Revelation 22:15)”

Crumbs? Every bit of God’s love for us in Christ Jesus, given in Word and Sacrament, is a richer feast than anything this earth can offer.

Drouais: Christ and the Canaanite Woman Text: And Jesus went away from there and withdrew to the district of Tyre and Sidon. And behold, a Canaanite woman from that region came out and was crying, “Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David; my daughter is severely oppressed by a demon.”

But he did not answer her a word.

And his disciples came and begged him, saying, “Send her away, for she is crying out after us.”

He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”

But she came and knelt before him, saying, “Lord, help me.”

And he answered, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs.”

She said, “Yes, Lord, yet even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.”

Then Jesus answered her, “O woman, great is your faith! Be it done for you as you desire.” And her daughter was healed instantly. Matthew 15:21-28

Scripture quoted from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Audio: Click to hear the MP3 of Crumbs for the Dogs.

Other Readings: Psalm 67; Isaiah 56:1, 6-8; Romans 11:1-2a, 13-15, 28-32

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10 August 2014

Sermon: Trinity 8 (Gospel)

10 August AD 2014

Theme: False Prophets and Fruitful Trees

Meyer and Osteen, False Prophets Summary: Works follow faith, they do not cause or enhance it. Anyone who preaches any form of human cooperation in salvation lies and is in danger of the Judgment.

Jesus seeks the fruit of faith, for nothing we produce apart from faith in Him is good in God’s eyes. Those who try to convince us otherwise are false prophets, diseased trees, ravenous wolves in sheep’s clothing.

Unfortunately, many people crave a doctrine of “Jesus and” such as Jesus and works or Jesus and signs and wonders. Either they cannot believe that they are totally incapable of cooperating in even the smallest bit in their salvation or they think that Christ somehow left out some essential action in His life, suffering, and death.

The truth, confessed and lived by fruitful Christian pastors, teachers, and others, remains the same: Jesus Christ died for all of my sins. The Holy Spirit creates faith that I might believe this wondrous message. Any good that I do is done by Christ in me.

Diseased Tree Text: [Jesus said,] “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will recognize them by their fruits.

“Are grapes gathered from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? So, every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the diseased tree bears bad fruit. A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a diseased tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus you will recognize them by their fruits.

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’

“And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’” Matthew 7:15-23

Scripture quoted from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Audio: Click to hear the MP3 of False Prophets and Fruitful Trees, preached to the saints of God at Trinity Lutheran Church, Norborne, Missouri.

Other Readings: Psalm 26; Jeremiah 23:16-29; Acts 20:27-38 or Romans 8:12-17

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03 August 2014

Sermon: Trinity 7 (Gospel)

3 August AD 2014

Theme: No Fainting on the Way

Summary: Without enough good food at the right time, we might “faint on the way” to wherever we travel. Jesus, who felt the suffering of the crowd, fed them so they could return home safely on their own ways.

This physical feeding models the even greater and vastly more important feeding humanity receives from Christ, the very Bread of Life come down from Heaven. Lest the cares, concerns, temptations, doubts, and sufferings of this world weaken us and cause us to quit our homeward pilgrimage, He feeds us Himself in Word and Sacrament that we might be nourished as we journey through this life into life everlasting.

Christ calls us to receive Him in Word and water, in bread and wine, that we would have strength and healing for the days ahead. He feeds us also our “First Article” gifts of food, clothing, shelter, and the like, caring for our bodily needs. We joyfully feast on the gifts physical and spiritual, anticipating that great Day when we finally join in the never-ending High Feast of the Lamb.

Jesus Feeding 4000 Text: In those days, when again a great crowd had gathered, and they had nothing to eat, he called his disciples to him and said to them, “I have compassion on the crowd, because they have been with me now three days and have nothing to eat. And if I send them away hungry to their homes, they will faint on the way. And some of them have come from far away.”

And his disciples answered him, “How can one feed these people with bread here in this desolate place?”

And he asked them, “How many loaves do you have?”

They said, “Seven.”

And he directed the crowd to sit down on the ground. And he took the seven loaves, and having given thanks, he broke them and gave them to his disciples to set before the people; and they set them before the crowd. And they had a few small fish. And having blessed them, he said that these also should be set before them. And they ate and were satisfied.

And they took up the broken pieces left over, seven baskets full. And there were about four thousand people. And he sent them away. Mark 8:1-9

Scripture quoted from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Audio: Click to hear the MP3 of No Fainting on the Way, preached to the saints of God at Trinity Lutheran Church, Norborne, Missouri.

Other Readings: Psalm 33:1-11; Genesis 2:7-17; Romans 6:19-23

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27 July 2014

Sermon: Trinity 6 (Epistle)

27 July AD 2014
Sixth Sunday after Trinity

Title: Dead and Alive (MP3 Audio)

Baptismal Flood Summary: Unlike the old westerns, where villains were wanted “dead or alive,” God wants us both dead and alive. In Baptism, God both slays the sinner and raises up from that death a saint. He takes us to cross and tomb and into the new life of the eternal kingdom.

This life, then, is the ongoing conflict of sinner and saint — both of which we remain until the end of time. The Old Adam keeps rousing itself, an animated corpse of decay and death. And through repentance and Absolution, God keeps putting it to death and raising us to life as new creatures.

Text: What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it? Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death?

We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his.

We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin. For one who has died has been set free from sin. Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him.

We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. For the death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to God. So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus. Romans 6:1-11

Scripture quoted from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Audio: Click to hear the MP3 of Dead and Alive. Preached to the saints of God at Trinity Lutheran Church, Norborne, Missouri.

NB: For some reason, a few people have had problems trying to play the inline audio if Windows Media is their default MP3 player. If this occurs, you can either change to QuickTime or another default browser player, copy and paste the link directly into a selected player, or download it to your computer, where it seems to work regardless of which player. Several folks have suggested VLC Player from VideoLAN.

Other Readings: Psalm 19; Exodus 20:1-17; Matthew 5:(17-19) 20-26

death, life, dead, alive, crucifixion, resurrection, baptism, law, gospel, jesus, christ Tags: | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | |