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Keyword: lutheran

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  • "Philip and Nathanael: A Story of Witnessing" (Sermon on John 1:43-51)

    01/13/2018 8:01:49 PM PST · by Charles Henrickson · 2 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | January 14, 2018 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “Philip and Nathanael: A Story of Witnessing” (John 1:43-51) The Holy Gospel for today, from John 1, takes place very early in Jesus’ ministry, when he was first gathering his disciples. It’s the story of Philip and Nathanael, how they came to be disciples and follow our Lord. It’s the story of “Philip and Nathanael: A Story of Witnessing.” Now today let their story become your story also. The story begins with Jesus finding Philip and saying to him, “Follow me.” Notice that: Jesus finds Philip. Just like he finds us. He seeks us out, even when we were not...
  • "The Heavens Being Torn Open" (Sermon for the Baptism of Our Lord, on Mark 1:4-11)

    01/07/2018 11:57:07 AM PST · by Charles Henrickson · 9 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | January 7, 2018 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “The Heavens Being Torn Open” (Mark 1:4-11) How many of you know when your baptismal birthday is? Mine is September 10. What’s yours? It’s good to take note of and remember the day of your baptism, that happy day when all your sins were washed away and you became a child of God. So if you don’t know your baptismal birthday, you might want to go ahead and find out when it is and then celebrate it. But did you know there’s a baptismal birthday going on today? And that it’s one all of us can celebrate? Because today is...
  • "What Epiphany Tells Us about Worship" (Sermon for the Epiphany of Our Lord, on Matthew 2:1-12)

    01/06/2018 5:50:59 PM PST · by Charles Henrickson · 2 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | January 6, 2018 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “What Epiphany Tells Us about Worship” (Matthew 2:1-12) The Festival of the Epiphany of Our Lord always falls on January 6, regardless of the day of the week. In that respect, it’s like Christmas, which always falls on December 25. Both are what are called “fixed-date festivals.” And so right after the twelve days of Christmas comes Epiphany. This year Epiphany, January 6, falls on a Saturday, and that’s why we’re here today. Epiphany has long been part of the church’s worship. In the early church, Epiphany was observed perhaps even more than Christmas. This was because, while at Christmas...
  • "And the Word Became Flesh" (Sermon for Christmas Day, on John 1:1-18)

    12/25/2017 12:00:41 PM PST · by Charles Henrickson · 6 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | December 25, 2017 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “And the Word Became Flesh” (John 1:1-18) “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.” Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, Christmas marks a dividing line between truth and error. The reality of what happened at Christmas--namely, that the Word became flesh--that reality is so shocking, so utterly unreasonable and offensive, that it drives people crazy. It causes them to deny the truth and to promote error in its place. Most all the classic heresies that have been around...
  • "From Heaven Above to Earth I Come" (Sermon for Christmas Eve, on Luke 2:1-20)

    12/24/2017 4:33:08 PM PST · by Charles Henrickson · 1 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | December 24, 2017 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “From Heaven Above to Earth I Come” (Luke 2:1-20) For our Christmas Eve homily tonight, I thought I’d let Luther lead the way. This is the 500th anniversary year of the Reformation, after all, and Martin Luther wrote and preached much on the wonder and the mystery of Christ’s birth. It was a favorite theme of his. So tonight we’ll use Luther’s great Christmas hymn, “From Heaven Above to Earth I Come,” as the basis for our meditation. You’ll find it as Hymn 358 in your Lutheran Service Book. Luther wrote the text of this hymn in 1534, it was...
  • "Gabriel's Gracious Greeting" (Sermon for the Fourth Sunday in Advent, on Luke 1:26-38)

    12/23/2017 8:30:58 PM PST · by Charles Henrickson · 2 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | December 24, 2017 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “Gabriel’s Gracious Greeting” (Luke 1:26-38) Every year on the Fourth Sunday in Advent, the Holy Gospel is a reading about Mary. Last year it was the message to Joseph that Mary would bear a son. Next year it will be Mary’s visitation to Elizabeth. This year it is the Annunciation to Mary that she will conceive in her womb and bear a son. So each year on this Sunday there’s something about Mary becoming the mother of our Lord, which is most fitting on the Sunday closest to Christmas. As I say, our text today is the Annunciation, the announcement...
  • "He Will Surely Do It" (Advent sermon on 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24)

    12/20/2017 8:05:08 PM PST · by Charles Henrickson · 3 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | December 20, 2017 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “He Will Surely Do It” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-24) This has been an Advent series about the Second Advent, the Second Coming of Christ. Each Wednesday we’ve looked at the Epistle reading from the previous Sunday, and the connecting theme that runs through all of them is the idea of “Waiting for the Day of the Lord.” We began two weeks ago by unpacking the biblical teaching about the day of the Lord, that it is “A Day of Judgment and Salvation.” Last week we saw that when the Day of the Lord finally comes, God will bring about “New Heavens...
  • "When the Messiah Gives You a Makeover" (Sermon for the Third Sunday in Advent, on Isaiah 61)

    12/16/2017 2:15:24 PM PST · by Charles Henrickson · 6 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | December 17, 2017 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “When the Messiah Gives You a Makeover” (Isaiah 61:1-4, 10-11) Have you ever seen one of those makeover shows on TV? My daughter used to watch one. It was called “What Not to Wear.” The idea of the show was that they would select a woman whose wardrobe and appearance wasn’t that great. Then they would help her pick out some new clothes that would look better on her. They would give her a nice haircut and do up her makeup. So this woman, who at the start of the program was looking all drab and dowdy, by the end...
  • Created Male and Female: An Open Letter from Religious Leaders

    12/16/2017 10:59:28 AM PST · by iowamark · 32 replies
    Dear Friends: As leaders of various communities of faith throughout the United States, many of us came together in the past to affirm our commitment to marriage as the union of one man and one woman and as the foundation of society. We reiterate that natural marriage continues to be invaluable to American society. We come together to join our voices on a more fundamental precept of our shared existence, namely, that human beings are male or female and that the socio-cultural reality of gender cannot be separated from one's sex as male or female. We acknowledge and affirm that...
  • "New Heavens and a New Earth" (Advent sermon on 2 Peter 3:8-14)

    12/14/2017 6:20:50 PM PST · by Charles Henrickson · 4 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | December 13, 2017 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “New Heavens and a New Earth” (2 Peter 3:8-14) This year’s theme for our Advent midweek services is “Waiting for the Day of the Lord.” We’re looking at the Epistle readings for the first three weeks of Advent, all of which are about looking forward to the second coming of Christ and, in view of that, how to live now while we’re waiting for that day. Last week we began by looking at the biblical background of the term, “The Day of the Lord.” We saw it as a day of both judgment and salvation--judgment for the unbelieving world, but...
  • "A Baptism of Repentance for the Forgiveness of Sins" (Mark 1:1-8)

    12/09/2017 10:29:59 PM PST · by Charles Henrickson · 4 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | December 10, 2017 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “A Baptism of Repentance for the Forgiveness of Sins” (Mark 1:1-8) Well, here comes John the Baptist again. He always shows up around this time of year. Always with kind of a depressing message: “Repent! Get your life straightened out!” John the Baptist is like the Denny Downer of December. Everybody else is having a good time getting ready for Christmas--going shopping, listening to Christmas music, watching specials on TV, having Christmas parties--and here comes John, telling us to repent. John, is that any way to get ready for Christmas? I mean, listen to this part of our text today...
  • "A Day of Judgment and Salvation" (Advent sermon on 1 Corinthians 1:3-9)

    12/06/2017 8:46:01 PM PST · by Charles Henrickson · 2 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | December 6, 2017 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “A Day of Judgment and Salvation” (1 Corinthians 1:3-9) In thinking about a theme for our three midweek Advent services this year, I decided to go with the Epistle readings for the first three Sundays in Advent. For there is a common theme that you can see in all three. There is a phrase, a connecting thread, that runs through these readings. See if you can notice what it is. First, from the Epistle for the First Sunday in Advent, 1 Corinthians 1, the part where it says: “as you wait for the revealing of our Lord Jesus Christ, who...
  • "Oh That You Would Rend the Heavens and Come Down" (Sermon, First Sunday in Advent, Isaiah 64:1-9)

    12/02/2017 11:11:05 PM PST · by Charles Henrickson · 9 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | December 3, 2017 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “Oh That You Would Rend the Heavens and Come Down” (Isaiah 64:1-9) The Old Testament Reading for today, from Isaiah 64, is an intense prayer. The prophet is begging God to intervene on behalf of his people. As such, it is a fitting prayer also for God’s New Testament people, the church. And so, on this First Sunday in Advent, as we enter this season of waiting for the Lord’s coming, we cry out with Isaiah, “Oh That You Would Rend the Heavens and Come Down.” What is the situation for which Isaiah writes? With prophetic foresight, Isaiah looks ahead...
  • "The Sheep and the Goats" (Sermon for the Last Sunday of the Church Year, on Matthew 25:31-46)

    11/25/2017 9:43:36 PM PST · by Charles Henrickson · 3 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | November 26, 2017 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “The Sheep and the Goats” (Matthew 25:31-46) Are you a sheep or a goat? You will be one or the other, you know. When? When Christ comes again. Listen again to today’s Gospel reading: “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left.” Dear friends, you...
  • Church of Sweden Officially Drops Calling God ‘Lord’, ‘He’ to be More Inclusive

    11/23/2017 10:25:58 AM PST · by C19fan · 26 replies
    Breitbart ^ | November 23, 2017 | Virginia Hale
    The Church of Sweden has voted to adopt a controversial new handbook which says masculine references to God, such as “He” and “Lord” should be scrapped so as to be more “inclusive”. Despite heavy criticism from organisations including Royal Swedish Academy, on Thursday the church approved the new handbook with a large majority.
  • "Three Words for Thanksgiving: Think, Thank, Talk" (Sermon for Thanksgiving Day; Philippians 4:6-20)

    11/22/2017 11:06:10 PM PST · by Charles Henrickson · 1 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | November 23, 2017 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “Three Words for Thanksgiving: Think, Thank, Talk” (Philippians 4:6-20) Today I have three words for you. These are three things you can do to celebrate this Day of Thanksgiving. They are three words that are easy for you to remember for the rest of this day. And here they are: “Three Words for Thanksgiving: Think, Thank, Talk.” We find all three of these ideas present in the Epistle lesson for today, from Philippians 4. First of all, we’ll start with the word “Think.” Paul addresses his brothers at the congregation in Philippi and he says: “Whatever is true, whatever is...
  • "Faithful Stewards of Our Master's Talents" (Sermon on Matthew 25:14-30)

    11/18/2017 10:03:29 PM PST · by Charles Henrickson · 1 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | November 19, 2017 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “Faithful Stewards of Our Master’s Talents” (Matthew 25:14-30) Our text is the Holy Gospel for today, from Matthew 25. It’s the story known as the Parable of the Talents. A master gives his servants talents, varying amounts of money, to manage on his behalf. When he comes back, we see what they have done with those talents and what the master says to them about their stewardship. This parable has real application to us, for you and I have been gifted by God with varying talents and abilities, as well as money, to be used faithfully for God’s purposes. You...
  • "Let Us Go to the House of the LORD!" (Sermon on Psalm 122:1)

    11/11/2017 10:47:28 PM PST · by Charles Henrickson · 4 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | November 12, 2017 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “Let Us Go to the House of the LORD!” (Psalm 122:1) You may notice that we still have the white paraments up from last week, when we observed All Saints’ Day. That’s because today we’re doing a kind of “All Saints’ Day, Part Two.” Last week we remembered those from our midst who entered the Church Triumphant over the past twelve months: Homer and Dorothy Rouggly, Bob and Dottie Worsham. This week, today, we’re remembering other departed saints from our midst, whom we commemorated at the start of the service with a plaque at the entrance to our church. The...
  • "Who Are These, Clothed in White Robes?" (Sermon for All Saints' Day, on Revelation 7:9-17)

    11/04/2017 10:54:09 PM PDT · by Charles Henrickson · 10 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | November 5, 2017 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “Who Are These, Clothed in White Robes?” (Revelation 7:9-17) Today, on this first Sunday in November, we observe All Saints’ Day. On All Saints’ Day, we rejoice that we are part of that great communion of saints that is the church of Christ, both the church on earth and the church in heaven. All the saints, all those made holy by the blood of Christ. Saints, holy ones, set apart to belong to God alone. All saints, all of us who have been baptized into Christ and clothed with his righteousness. On All Saints’ Day we commemorate the faithful departed,...
  • "Reformation 500: By Grace Alone" (Sermon for Reformation Day, on Romans 3:19-28)

    10/28/2017 9:07:56 PM PDT · by Charles Henrickson · 13 replies
    stmatthewbt.org ^ | October 29, 2017 | The Rev. Charles Henrickson
    “Reformation 500: By Grace Alone” (Romans 3:19-28) Happy Reformation Day! Now I could say that every year on the last Sunday in October, which is when we observe Reformation Day. But this year it is something special. Because this year, 2017, and this week, October 31--this is the 500th anniversary of that day in 1517 when the Reformation really began. And you and I are here as a result. We are in a church, this congregation, and a church body, the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, that hold to the teachings that came out of that great Reformation. We are partnered with...