Let us recollect that peace or war will not always be left to our option; that however moderate or unambitious we may be, we cannot count upon the moderation, or hope to extinguish the ambition of others.
‹Alexander Hamilton›
Atlantis: the domain of the Stingray
21Jun
2015
Sun
15:48
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Third Sunday after Trinity

Luke 15:1-10

The Third Sunday after Trinity 2015 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Last week, you heard me paraphrase the synodical president, Rev. Matthew Harrison. “Jesus lives in the hearts of sinners, so you better be one.” The idea, as I used it, was that Jesus came to save sinners, something that St. Paul once wrote (cf. 1 Timothy 1:15), so if you’re looking for salvation or hoping to be saved, then you had best be a sinner. The Good News is that Jesus has come for you, dear sinner. But there are those who have no need for Jesus. If you say you have no sin, you only deceive yourselves (cf. 1 John 1:8); in this state of self-deception, you would believe that Jesus is unnecessary.

Shortly after last week’s text is today’s Gospel. Jesus is still teaching at tables. This time, He’s eating with tax collectors and sinners, the people for whom He came to earth. The Pharisees and scribes grumbled, “This Man receives sinners and eats with them.”

14Jun
2015
Sun
15:53
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Second Sunday after Trinity

Luke 14:15-24

Second Sunday after Trinity 2015 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Jesus is in the home of the enemy. He is eating at the table of a Pharisee, surrounded by many of this Pharisee’s friends—more Pharisees. They were watching Him intently. A man walks in with dropsy, and Jesus asks them, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?” They are silent. Jesus heals the man, then asks the Pharisees, “Which of you, having a donkey or an ox that has fallen into a pit, will not immediately pull him out on the Sabbath day?” They are unable to answer Him. (cf. Luke 14:1-6)

Being at the table, Jesus then teaches them proper table etiquette. When you are invited by someone to a wedding feast, don’t take the first seat, take the last. It’s better to be told to move up than to be told to move down. When you give a dinner or supper, do not invite those who can repay you, but those who are unable to repay you; then, you shall be repaid at the resurrection of the just. There are eschatological implications in what Jesus is teaching them, for the wedding feast to which He is referring to is ultimately the Feast of Victory of the Lamb in His Kingdom which has no end and the dinner or supper is ultimately the Lord’s Supper where those who are unable to repay Jesus for His body and blood are stooped at His table receiving from Him forgiveness, life, and salvation which prepares them for the resurrection as the just. (cf. Luke 14:7-14)

They are both the same feast, for in taking the Lord’s Supper, you are partaking of the Feast of Victory. It would seem one of the Pharisees understood this, if only in part. “Blessed is he who shall eat bread in the kingdom of God!”

7Jun
2015
Sun
15:31
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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First Sunday after Trinity

Luke 16:19-31

First Sunday after Trinity 2015 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Now the Pharisees, who were lovers of money, also heard all these things, and they derided Him. And He said to them, “You are those who justify yourselves before men, but God knows your hearts. For what is highly esteemed among men is an abomination in the sight of God. The law and the prophets were until John. Since that time the kingdom of God has been preached, and everyone is pressing into it. And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away than for one tittle of the law to fail.” (Luke 16:14-17)

Jesus had just told the crowd the parable of The Prudent Steward of Unrighteousness. It’s a story demonstrating mercy and forgiveness, where a steward, fearing for his job, has his master’s debtors reduce the amount they each owed to his master. Now, the steward, if he were to be kicked out of his master’s service, would have made friends of those debtors to the point where his mercy toward them would be repaid, or he would have saved his hide by giving them a more favorable opinion of his master. “And I say to you, make friends for yourselves by unrighteous mammon, that when you fail, they may receive you into an everlasting home.” (Luke 16:9)

The Pharisees heard this and, naturally, heard it as a condemnation against them. They and Jesus were constantly at odds, not the least of which was that they followed the commandments of men as if from God (cf. Matthew15:9)—their doctrine was not that of God. In addition to this point of contention, Jesus also nails them on being lovers of money, and if lovers of money, then not ones who loved God and their neighbors—He tells them the parable of Dives and Lazarus.