Posts

Showing posts from May, 2012

Baptism: God's Gift of Forgiveness - Acts 2:37-42

For the last two weeks, we have been examining the waters of Baptism.  We are in the midst of a journey examining the fact that these waters, water that has been around since the time of Creation…the waters placed on our heads or under which we were immersed having existed since God’s Spirit hovered over them as time began.  The first Sunday we simply looked at the fact that Baptism is a simply a gift.  It is a gift in the fact that it is a reminder of God’s grace…God’s prevenient grace working in our lives before we are ever truly aware of it. Last week we considered how Baptism is also an acknowledgement of God’s gift of family.  That through the waters of our Baptism, we are made part of God’s family.  In these waters we are adopted into the family of God, we are made brothers and sisters with Jesus and with all who have received the waters in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  We become part of the largest family the world has ever seen, a family not united by the DNA o…

Baptism: God's Gift of a New Family - Ephesians 4:1-16

We've seen those kinds of stories before...instances of unexpected new families.  Maybe they don't always happen like they did with this Sally and Jason...inheriting four children, due to the death of a friend, but it could happen.  It could happen with the unexpected death of a family member.  It could happen with a marriage.  That is how it happened for me.  I married Anita and instantly, with Natalie and Ben, we became a family of four as the minister said, "I now pronounce you husband and wife."  There was no slow development into a family of four (but slowly, after two years to a family of five after Davey was born), the preacher and we said the words, and ‘boom’ instant family. Last week we began talking about Baptism as God’s gift to us, or actually, we began talking about baptism as the recognition of God’s gift of grace.  We came to understand baptism as the fact that God’s grace began working in us before we were even aware of it…remember that John Wesley ca…

Baptism: God's Gift - Acts 8:26-40

Water…is a truly precious gift from God…a gift we sometimes take for granted…many of us using it without thinking…at other times not realizing how important it is until there is none to be had. Water…the waters of baptism…another gift that we so often take for granted…often not realizing its significance.  Beginning today, and over the next month, we will be examining this precious gift from God…the gift brought to us in the waters of baptism.  We will consider how it brings the gift of family, the gift of God’s forgiveness, the gift of a new life, and the gift of a new kind of living.  Today, though, we will consider simply the fact that it is a gift. In the video clip it was noted that all of the water that we have on earth has been here since the moment of creation.  It ties into that scientific understanding that matter is neither created nor destroyed…once God has spoken matter into existence, it is there.  It may change states, but it continues to exist.  Consider the significance…

Psalm 96 - Sing, Rejoice, Praise

An old farmer went to the city one weekend and attended the big city church. He came home and his wife asked him how it was. "Well," said the farmer, "It was good. They did something different, however. They sang praise choruses instead of hymns."  "Praise choruses?" said his wife, "What are those?" "Oh, they're okay. They're sort of like hymns, only different," said the farmer. "Well, what's the difference?" asked his wife. The farmer said, "Well it's like this - If I were to say to you: 'Martha, the cows are in the corn,' well that would be a hymn. If, on the other hand, I were to say to you: 'Martha Martha, Martha, Oh, Martha, MARTHA, MARTHA, the cows, the big cows, the brown cows, the black cows, the white cows, the black and white cows, the COWS, COWS, COWS are in the corn, are in the corn, are in the corn, are in the corn, the CORN, CORN, CORN' -- well, that would be a praise chorus.&q…