It is a great tragedy that so many within our midst want to scrap everything that means Lutheran, but keep the title.
‹Rev. Steve Cholak›
Atlantis: the domain of the Stingray
30Dec
2012
Sun
18:02
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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First Sunday after Christmas

Luke 2:22-40

Christmas I 2012 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Our text brings us forward, 40 days after the birth of the Son of God, 32 days after His circumcision and the day He was given the name Jesus, “for He will save His people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:21) Now, Mary presents herself in the temple, having brought forth her firstborn, a son, and there she is met by a man named Simeon. He had taken Jesus into his arms and sang what we now use in the liturgy as the Nunc Dimittis.

24Dec
2012
Mon
23:48
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Eve of the Nativity of Our Lord

Luke 2:1-20

Christmas Eve 2012 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

“You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.”

I have often said in your hearing that the cloths of the Christ-child in the manger prefigure His burial. The message of the cloths is clear for those of us look forward to Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection. For, as was the custom of the day, bodies were wrapped in spiced linen cloths, and the spices usually included myrrh, before being placed in tombs. We see this happening when the Marys go to Jesus’ tomb to spice up His body, since there was no time to do it properly before the Sabbath—they find the stone rolled away from the tomb and the linen cloths folded neatly on the bench.

19Dec
2012
Wed
23:17
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Mid-week Advent III

Luke 1:57-80

Mid-week Advent III 2012 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

“God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in these last days spoken to us by His Son...,” the author of the letter to the Hebrews wrote. (Hebrews 1:1-2) He recounts, in few words, the fact that for countless years, God sent prophets to speak His Word to His people—to warn them, instruct them, convict them, forgive them, counsel them, console them, and, most importantly, point forward to the coming of the promise He first made to Adam and Eve: “And I will put enmity Between you and the woman, And between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, And you shall bruise His heel.” (Genesis 3:15)

9Dec
2012
Sun
22:40
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Populus Zion

Luke 21:25-36

Populus Zion 2012 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

“[W]hen these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near.”

Redemption draws near when Christ is present...when Jesus begins to happen and is happening. As we are in the midst of our Advent preparation, we look at Jesus beginning to happen, as we heard on Wednesday, when the Son of God takes on human flesh in the womb of the blessed virgin Mary. You could say, look at the belly of the young maiden from Nazareth, for in there your redemption draws near.

The counter to that is when Christ is not present, redemption is nowhere near. And, let us be perfectly clear, in His omnipresence, Jesus the Christ, in His full humanity and full divinity, is everywhere He wants to be. When I say, “when Christ is not present,” what I mean to say is where Christ is excluded.

5Dec
2012
Wed
21:10
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Mid-week Advent I

Luke 1:26-38

Mid-week Advent I Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

It seems like a good place to start as we begin our mid-week Advent services. True, “In the beginning was the Word,” (cf. John 1:1) but as we look forward to Christmas and the birth of the enfleshed God, it does us good look to when God became incarnate, when the Son of God, the Word became flesh in order to dwell among us. (cf. John 1:14)

2Dec
2012
Sun
19:04
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Ad Te Levavi

Matthew 21:1-9

Ad Te Levavi 2012 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Prepare...

October had barely started, and the store aisles were being set up for Christmas. Even before Halloween, this or that corner of the big box stores were littered with red and green, silver and gold. Of course, right next to it were all of the fall harvest colors—the oranges and browns. Candy corn and candy canes side by side. And this set-up seems to happen sooner and sooner year after year.

Thanksgiving came, and no sooner did the annual parade end that the stores were opening with huge sales and door buster deals. Usually, these kinds of things are reserved for Friday. It started out with a few stores, opening at their regular hours, then a few more stores joined in the “festivities” and they opened earlier and earlier. Friday wasn’t enough; Black Friday spilled into Thursday. Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday followed, but the big boxes have extended Black Friday into the following week, even to the end of November. No longer do Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday have anything to do with any particular day, but with the events themselves. And these events seems to go on longer and longer year after year.