Jesus Christ is the only man ever to have died and lived to tell about it (besides Lazarus).
‹G. A. Wagner›
Atlantis: the domain of the Stingray
31Dec
2017
Sun
15:00
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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First Sunday after Christmas

Luke 2:22-40

First Sunday after Christmas 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

[Sermon text and PDF to be posted soon, as time allows.]

24Dec
2017
Sun
23:33
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Eve of the Nativity of Our Lord

Matthew 1:18-25

Eve of the Nativity of Our Lord 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

[Sermon text and PDF to be posted soon, as time allows.]

3Dec
2017
Sun
15:00
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Ad Te Levavi

Matthew 21:1-9

Ad Te Levavi 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

[Sermon text and PDF to be posted soon, as time allows.]

24Sep
2017
Sun
15:00
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Michaelmas (transferred)

Luke 10:17-20; Revelation 12:7-12

Michaelmas (transferred) 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

[Sermon text and PDF to be posted soon, as time allows.]

10Sep
2017
Sun
15:00
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Thirteenth Sunday after Trinity

Luke 10:23-37

Thirteenth Sunday after Trinity 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

[Sermon text and PDF to be posted soon, as time allows.]

3Sep
2017
Sun
15:00
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Twelfth Sunday after Trinity

Mark 7:31-37

Twelfth Sunday after Trinity 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

[Sermon text and PDF to be posted soon, as time allows.]

30Jul
2017
Sun
19:38
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Seventh Sunday after Trinity

Mark 8:1-9

Seventh Sunday after Trinity 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

[Sermon text and PDF to be posted soon, as time allows.]

16Jul
2017
Sun
15:00
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Fifth Sunday after Trinity

Luke 5:1-11

Fifth Sunday after Trinity 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

[Sermon text and PDF to be posted soon, as time allows.]

9Jul
2017
Sun
15:00
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Fourth Sunday after Trinity

Luke 6:36-42

Fourth Sunday after Trinity 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

[Sermon text and PDF to be posted soon, as time allows.]

2Jul
2017
Sun
15:00
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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The Visitation

Luke 1:39-56

The Visitation 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

[Sermon text and PDF to be posted soon, as time allows.]

11Jun
2017
Sun
15:00
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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First Sunday after Trinity

Luke 16:19-31

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

[Sermon text and PDF to be posted soon, as time allows.]

28May
2017
Sun
15:00
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Exaudi

John 15:26—16:4

Exaudi 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

[Sermon text and PDF to be posted soon, as time allows.]

25May
2017
Thu
15:00
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Ascension of Our Lord

Mark 16:14-20

Ascension of Our Lord 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

[Sermon text and PDF to be posted soon, as time allows.]

30Apr
2017
Sun
16:34
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Misericordias Domini

John 10:11-16

In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

“[A] hireling, he who is not the shepherd, one who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees; and the wolf catches the sheep and scatters them.”

It’s appropriate, in an ironic way, that this Sunday, Good Shepherd Sunday, falls on the Sunday following Call Day at the two LCMS seminaries. This past week, men who have spent nearly 4 years preparing to become pastors learned where they would first be entering the Holy Ministry. Seminary professors and members of the council of presidents probably told them to emulate the Good Shepherd in their impending ministry, perhaps even including laying down their lives for the sheep.

It’s appropriate, in an ironic way, because the predilection for these men, as it has been for pastors since Adam, is to be more like the hireling than the Good Shepherd. The sheep are under constant barrage from the wolf, and sometimes those wolves are in sheep’s clothing. These pastors are charged with defending their flocks from the attacks of the wolf. For someone so new in the office—even despite the preparation from the Lord’s Church and Jesus Himself—this is no easy task; it’s no easy task for any shepherd of a local flock, but time does give him some other tools and wisdom with which to combat the foe in the name of Jesus Christ.

You see, that foe, the wolf is always attacking the flock, and his attacks come from without and within.

23Apr
2017
Sun
16:10
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Quasimodo Geniti

John 20:19-31

Quasimodo Geniti 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

When Jesus was risen from the dead, an angel came to the tomb to roll the stone away. There was a great earthquake, and the guard posted at the tomb shook with great fear and “became like dead men.” (cf. Matthew 28:4) They fainted for dread and fell asleep.

After the angel and the women interact, he tells them to tell the disciples that Jesus had risen, just as He said He would. Jesus meets them on the way and tells them the same thing. Here are the first witnesses of the Resurrection. They have seen the negative evidence that Jesus is no longer dead: the empty tomb. They have seen the positive evidence that Jesus is no longer dead: Jesus Himself, alive and scarred.

The women go and find the disciples, but their message isn’t really all that they were told. “They have taken away the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid Him.” (John 20:2) Peter and John run to the tomb and see it just as the women had told them.

Peter and John leave, returning to their own homes. One might wonder what they were thinking, especially since they have yet to be told. However, John is said to have believed once he saw the empty tomb. What did he believe? Well, maybe he believed in the resurrection and did not really understand what it all meant; maybe he simply believed what the women told them: that someone stole the body, and that they didn’t know where they put it, but he didn’t yet believe that Jesus rose. (cf. John 20:1-9)

The women stayed behind. The angel meets them again. Then Jesus shows up again. He tells Mary Magdalene to tell the disciples that He is risen.

16Apr
2017
Sun
15:46
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Resurrection of Our Lord

Mark 16:1-8

The Resurrection of Our Lord 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Media vita in morte sumus, the 14th century hymn begins. “In the midst of life we are in death.” It is often recited at committal services. It confesses the frailty of these bodies, the weakness of this flesh, and the brevity of this fallen life.

“In the midst of earthly life, snares of death surround us,” a more modern translation puts it. No matter the effort you put into it, you are surrounded by death, laying for you like a trap. School shootings, terrorist bombings, stillborn children, and many other things come upon you unexpectedly. But, there are also the expected endings of life, such as for a terminal disease and old age. All around you see constant reminders that you are mortal; even the very earth that you tread upon reminds you, for you are dust and to dust you shall return.

15Apr
2017
Sat
23:45
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Easter Vigil

The Resurrection—Baptism, Confirmation, and Lord’s Supper

Easter Vigil 2017 Wordle
In the name of Jesus. Amen.

“I know that my Redeemer lives,” Job said. (Job 19:25a) On a night like this, it might be a bit strange to say something like that. The church has just celebrated Maundy Thursday, where Jesus celebrated His Last Supper, instituting the Sacrament of the Altar. The church has just memorialized Good Friday, where Jesus finished the work of salvation by his substitutionary death on the cross. Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea had petitioned to take the body down from the cross and bury it; they had to be quick because the Sabbath was quickly approaching.

With the permission they sought, they laid the body of Jesus to rest. The Son of Man spent the most holy of Sabbaths resting in the grave.

14Apr
2017
Fri
23:22
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Good Friday

The Crucifixion

Good Friday 2017 Wordle
In the name of Jesus. Amen.

The history of the world converges at this one point in time. St. John wrote it in the beginning of his Gospel as John the Baptist said it. “Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.” There, on the banks of the Jordan River, the Prophet points to the Son of God in the flesh and points Him out as the propitiation for the sins of the world. His blood will cover a multitude of sins—the sins of the whole world.

This history has it’s beginnings in the beginning, even as the Evangelist first wrote: “In the beginning...” There, in the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth. He created light and separated it from the darkness. He populated the earth with plants and animals. He created man out of the dust of the earth and placed Him on the very same rock from which he was made. He fashioned woman from the man’s rib and placed her next to her husband, a helper suitable to him, as there was none other to be found among all of the other creatures of God.

9Apr
2017
Sun
16:52
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Palmarum

Matthew 27:11-54

Palmarum 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

YHWH met with Moses on the mountain where He gave him the Ten Commandments. Moses could have taken the dictation in several ways. He could have written it on a papyrus scroll; after all, he just came from the land of papyrus, so it’s not out of the realm of possibilities to think that they had plenty of it with them in the wilderness. He could have written on clay tablets; again, not a difficult resource to get a hold of. He could have even written it in the sand as a means of helping him to memorize what God had said. But he didn’t record the Ten Commandments on paper or clay or even in the sand, but they were carved in stone.

That phrase “carved in stone,” should cause you to think. Something carved in stone has endurance. Paper soon becomes brittle, and the writing on it can fade. Clay, likewise, can be brittle and easily break. And anything written in sand is quickly lost in a breeze or when the rain falls. But something carved in stone has a permanence that those other methods do not. Something carved in stone lasts. When you carve something in stone, it conveys an importance because of its permanence. The Ten Commandments are carved in stone.

This is God’s everlasting covenant with His people. His people will obey His will and keep this commandments. But these laws are not only for His people, but for all mankind, as they are all His creation.

12Mar
2017
Sun
15:32
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Reminiscere

Matthew 15:21-28

Reminiscere 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

“Remember not the sins of my youth, nor my transgressions: according to Thy mercy remember Thou me for Thy goodness’ sake, O LORD.”

When you read today’s Gospel text, you can come to the conclusion that God’s mercy knows no limits. It doesn’t matter who you are, where you’re from, what your condition is, God is merciful, and He loves showing mercy. In fact, at times, you don’t even have to be asking for mercy, and God will show it!

26Feb
2017
Sun
15:02
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Quinquagesima

Luke 18:31-43

Quinquagesima 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

The certain man on the road to Jericho was blind. He was a beggar, and from the sound of what Luke related, not a highly regarded one. He could not see the commotion, but he could hear it. So, he asked what was going on. I imagine that he was told reluctantly that Jesus was passing by.

The certain blind man called out to Jesus for mercy. The crowd tried to quiet him. Instead of being silent, like the crowd shouted to him, he cried out all the more for mercy.

Jesus asked, “What do you want Me to do for you?” “Lord, that I may receive my sight.” Jesus does for the man exactly what he asked for. It might do well to note what the blind man didn’t ask for; doing so reinforces what’s going on in this text, so note well that he didn’t ask for riches and fame—he didn’t even want a better reputation among the people of Jericho. He didn’t ask for food and drink. He didn’t beg for the things that the other passers-by could give him. In mercy, he asked for his sight, and Jesus obliged.

22Jan
2017
Sun
15:45
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Third Sunday after Epiphany

2 Kings 5:1-15; Matthew 8:1-13

The Third Sunday after Epiphany 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

You have today the story of two different men. They’re both Gentiles. They’re both military commanders. They both have a grave concern that they want God to fix. And that’s where their stories diverge.

On the one hand, you have the commander of the armies of Syria. He’s a man of honor, nobility, and valor. To this man, Naaman, was given victory over Syria’s enemies, including Israel. As it happened, on a particular raid, they had brought back a girl captive from the land of Israel. This girl waited on Naaman’s wife.

On the other hand, you have the commander of a garrison of Roman soldiers—a centurion. He, too, was an honorable man. He knew his place in the armies of Rome—knew the authority he had been granted, and the responsibility that accompanied that authority. For, “I say to this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes; and to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.” In other words, the centurion knew the power of a word.

8Jan
2017
Sun
15:45
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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First Sunday after Epiphany

Luke 2:41-52

The First Sunday after Epiphany 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Jesus asked, “Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?”

Thus says the Lord:

If a person sins unintentionally against any of the commandments of the LORD in anything which ought not to be done, and does any of them...[i]f anyone of the common people sins unintentionally by doing something against any of the commandments of the LORD in anything which ought not to be done, and is guilty, or if his sin which he has committed comes to his knowledge, then he shall bring as his offering a kid of the goats, a female without blemish, for his sin which he has committed. And he shall lay his hand on the head of the sin offering, and kill the sin offering at the place of the burnt offering. Then the priest shall take some of its blood with his finger, put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering, and pour all the remaining blood at the base of the altar. He shall remove all its fat, as fat is removed from the sacrifice of the peace offering; and the priest shall burn it on the altar for a sweet aroma to the LORD. So the priest shall make atonement for him, and it shall be forgiven him. (Leviticus 4:2, 27-31)

Thus is prescribed the Sin Offering at the Temple, the House of YHWH, the living God. In such manner is a man cleansed of the sin he commits unintentionally against the Lord’s commands, and he is forgiven before the Lord his God.

Thus says the Lord:

If a person commits a trespass, and sins unintentionally in regard to the holy things of the LORD,...[i]f a person sins, and commits any of these things which are forbidden to be done by the commandments of the LORD, though he does not know it, yet he is guilty and shall bear his iniquity...[i]f a person sins and commits a trespass against the LORD by lying to his neighbor about what was delivered to him for safekeeping, or about a pledge, or about a robbery, or if he has extorted from his neighbor, or if he has found what was lost and lies concerning it, and swears falsely—in any one of these things that a man may do in which he sins: then it shall be, because he has sinned and is guilty, that he shall restore what he has stolen, or the thing which he has extorted, or what was delivered to him for safekeeping, or the lost thing which he found, or all that about which he has sworn falsely. He shall restore its full value, add one-fifth more to it, and give it to whomever it belongs, on the day of his trespass offering. And he shall bring his trespass offering to the LORD, a ram without blemish from the flock, with your valuation, as a trespass offering, to the priest. So the priest shall make atonement for him before the LORD, and he shall be forgiven for any one of these things that he may have done in which he trespasses. (Leviticus 5:15a, 17; 6:2-7)

Thus is prescribed the Guilt Offering at the Temple, the House of YHWH, the living God. In such manner is a man cleansed of the sin he commits—the guilt removed from him—and he is made right in the sight of man and before the Lord his God.

Thus says the Lord:

When any one of you brings an offering to the LORD, you shall bring your offering of the livestock—of the herd and of the flock. If his offering is a burnt sacrifice of the herd, let him offer a male without blemish; he shall offer it of his own free will at the door of the tabernacle of meeting before the LORD. Then he shall put his hand on the head of the burnt offering, and it will be accepted on his behalf to make atonement for him. He shall kill the bull before the LORD; and the priests, Aaron’s sons, shall bring the blood and sprinkle the blood all around on the altar that is by the door of the tabernacle of meeting. And he shall skin the burnt offering and cut it into its pieces. The sons of Aaron the priest shall put fire on the altar, and lay the wood in order on the fire. Then the priests, Aaron’s sons, shall lay the parts, the head, and the fat in order on the wood that is on the fire upon the altar; but he shall wash its entrails and its legs with water. And the priest shall burn all on the altar as a burnt sacrifice, an offering made by fire, a sweet aroma to the LORD...The burnt offering shall be on the hearth upon the altar all night until morning, and the fire of the altar shall be kept burning on it. (Leviticus 1:2b-9; 6:9b)

Thus is prescribed the Burnt Offering at the Temple, the House of YHWH, the living God. In such manner does a man make propitiation—that is satisfaction—for any ill wrath of God, for it is an aroma pleasing to Him. In such manner does a man also consecrate the whole of him for service and adoration of YHWH, the living God.

6Jan
2017
Fri
23:54
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Epiphany of Our Lord

Matthew 2:1-12

The Epiphany of Our Lord 2017 Wordle
In the name of Jesus. Amen.

A friend of mine says that the church has a problem. Her members like to sentimentalize the Nativity. In a sense, he’s not far off. There are manger scenes set up on many street corners, and every single one of them makes for a peaceful image. Many churches put on Christmas pageants, where some children wear angelic wings made from bent coat hangers and others wear oversized brown bath robes and carry a shepherd’s crook. The entire world seemingly gathers to sing “Silent Night,” as if to pretend that it will “sleep in heavenly peace” that night.

The reality of the Nativity—and what follows—is anything but peaceful. First, there’s childbirth. If you’ve ever witnessed it, it is hardly ever peaceful and silent, especially for a first child. And Jesus’ birth was, perhaps, especially strange; being born in a barn, if there were sheep, oxen, cows, donkeys, and camels about, they were likely not kneeling and silently attentive to the commotion going on in the stall where the people were, like you always see in the plastic, plaster, or pewter replicas that can be found around the world. You can also bet that the Infant didn’t spend much time in that manger; he had to be there when the shepherds came and found the family, but in addition to being swaddled, if He was awake, He was likely crying or nursing—it’s what babies do, and Jesus is fully baby at the Nativity.

And then there were those shepherds out in the fields tending to the sheep (so I guess they weren’t even in the stable). Things for them were certainly more peaceful and silent BEFORE the birth was announced. But, their silent, dark night was pierced by a bright heavenly light and the voice of an angel telling them, cowering in fear at this point, not to be afraid, but to go joyfully to find the Babe lying in a manger. It’s not everyday that you’ll find a sight such as this, and I’m not referring only to the angels, because even more showed up and began singing; I imagine the night was lit up like the day time.

So, now, in addition to animals milling about as she’s trying to calm her Baby, now Mary deals with visiting shepherds. I suppose it’s to be expected if you’ve just given birth in a barn, but still, some courtesy would have been appreciated. Of course, this is no ordinary Baby. This is the Son of God.

1Jan
2017
Sun
15:33
author: Stingray
category: Sermons
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Circumcision and Name of Jesus

Luke 2:21

The Circumcision and Name of Jesus 2017 Wordle
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Mary and Joseph were in Bethlehem for a census. There was no room in the inn. Mary gave birth in a stable and laid her Babe in a manger, wrapped in swaddling cloths. This Baby is the Son of God—God in the flesh. Remember everything you’ve heard from me this past month as regards God in the flesh, because it’s all right there in the manger. (cf. Luke 2:1-7)

Shepherds were in the field tending their flocks that night. Then, an angel of the Lord appeared to them. They were frightened, but the angel brought them good news and was joined by a whole host of angels to sing a song:

[T]here is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger...Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!”

The angels depart. The Shepherds make their way to see this thing of which they heard. They marveled, then went around telling everyone the things which they had heard and seen, then returned to their fields and folds. But Mary kept all things and pondered them in her heart. (cf. Luke 2:8-20)

Pause, because that’s what St. Luke does. The Son of God, who is the Word of God, is born in Bethlehem, as the prophets foretold, then Luke pauses for 8 days.