Sermons

The Vector of Worship

Rev. Chandler Stokes

Sermon     Sermons
Sunday, July 27, 2014

Rev. Stokes: "I was asked to revisit some earlier sermons, and this is the first that I'll be exploring this summer. It is about worship--what exactly is it to worship God? The text is Job--and so the nature of God comes into view as well: who is this God Whom we worship? How do we keep God God and not just a human projection? It's not a simple topic; I'm glad someone asked us to go here again."


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I Am Who I Am: The Kingdom of God Wrestles with Identity

Rev. Katherine Baker

Sermon     Sermons
Sunday, July 20, 2014

Rev Katie Baker will be exploring the theme of adoption, identity and the nature of our reformed faith. When we say "reformed and ever reforming" and might that be a nod to the paradox and mystery of God's name: Yahweh: I AM WHO I AM?


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It’s Not Over Until It’s Over

Rev. David Baak

Sermon     Sermon
Sunday, July 13, 2014

The Genesis story of Jacob tricking his twin brother Esau out of the birthright is a classic ancient Hebrew story. The question for us, as always, is what is the teaching here for us, for today? It probably says something about immediate gratification and certainly it teaches us about God’s providence—though we never really know quite what that is until after it’s over. So, surely, that should remind us that for us, and certainly for God, It’s Not Over Until It’s Over.


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Wise Infants

Rev. David Baak

Sermon    
Sunday, July 6, 2014

Questions for this Sunday's meditation, as we celebrate the sacrament of the Lord's Supper, include: Is Jesus' statement about children playing in Matthew 11, ("We played for you and you did not dance; we wailed and you did not mourn") a metaphor for 21st century American society? And, how does the invitation of Jesus to "Come to me all that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest" help us respond? And, how are "wise infants" the key to understanding this mystery?


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Recognizing Truth

Rev. David Baak

Sermon     Sermons
Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Hannaniah and Jeremiah square off in Jeremiah chapters 27 and 28 over whose prophecy is true. Jeremiah claims that we’ll know the real word of the Lord when it comes to pass. Is that the only way we know truth?…after the fact? “Recognizing Truth” this Sunday, we explore one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit in this season after Pentecost as we think about the Spirit’s work in our liv


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Hard Choices

Rev. David Baak

Sermon     Sermons
Sunday, June 22, 2014

The passage is an interesting one—“Hard Choices” — including the costly discipleship involved in following a Jesus who brings a sword, not peace(?) and sets parents against children, etc. within the overriding asssurance of “Do Not Fear” — losing your life for my sake… really? In a culture of fear and scarcity, God’s abundance is more than enough to give us the courage to work through the consequences of discipleship.


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Montreat Comes Home

Rev. Chandler Stokes

Sermon     Sermons
Sunday, June 15, 2014

Rev. Stokes returns from the Montreat Youth conference this Sunday, where he has been preaching all week. He'll be preaching about that experience.


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Trying to Keep the Prophets Quiet

Rev. David Baak

Sermon     Sermons
Wednesday, June 11, 2014

"Trying to Keep the Prophets Quiet" — a sermon on Numbers 11.24-30: It is Pentecost...the "birth of the Church" when the Holy Spirit "falls on the disciples in wind and like tongues of fire." Except the Holy Spirit was active long before, even in the ancient stories of God's people—at the Tabernacle, in the wilderness, in pillars of fire and cloud, and by inspiring prophets. From the God at the tabernacle being "out of the camp" to becoming "living in us." Today, we believe that the Holy Spirit lives in each of us, together, as Church—how does our "prophecy" take shape in our lives, in this culture of ours?


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Closing the Distance

Rev. Chandler Stokes

Sermon     Sermon
Sunday, June 1, 2014

Peter is the exemplar of "I believe. Help my unbelief." When he watches Jesus' trial "from a distance," Jesus looks at him in compassion. Jesus crosses the distance to him.


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Finding the Unknown God

Rev. David Baak

Sermon     Sermon
Sunday, May 25, 2014

The question is how do we live as a holy people in a broken world? From the Greek poet, Paul affirms for us today: “In God we live and move and have our being.” When we hear our own faith voice in that of another, we reach toward understanding and acceptance and peace. And, when we live that way, we experience God’s grace with and through each other…which in a profound sense is an experience of holiness.


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Dirt in Our Shoes

Sermon    
Sunday, May 18, 2014

A sermon by Rev. Chandler Stokes on 2 Kings 5:1–14, part of a short series about living in between the “I believe” and the “help my unbelief.” In this text, Naaman is healed by the prophet, and he returns to Syria, to the house of Rimmon—where he knows he will worship another god than the one that healed him. But before he goes, he takes some of Israel's soil with him. What’s he going to do with it? He might just sprinkle some in his shoes to remind himself of where and to whom he ultimately belongs. It’s not always safe to act like you belong to God—but it is faithful.


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Namesake

Rev. Chandler Stokes

Sermon    
Sunday, May 11, 2014

A sermon by Rev. Chandler Stokes on Matthew 1:18–25. We are called to live holy lives in an unredeemed world. We are baptized and given a name (“Christian”) that puts us in the world but not of the world. Living in “two worlds at once” is like being an immigrant in some ways; it is a metaphor for those who worship and serve the living God. We are in one sense never really at home.


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Fleeing in Terror

Ryan Donahoe

Sermon    
Sunday, May 4, 2014

A sermon by Ryan Donahoe on Mark 16:1–8. What do we do when we wake up the Monday after Easter and it appears as though the resurrection never happened—that the world is exactly the same as it was on Palm Sunday? The good news is that we know what to do—even when our faith is lacking, our doubt is overwhelming, and we don't comprehend what took place on Easter morning.


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Return No One Evil for Evil

Rev. Karen Stokes

Sermon    
Sunday, April 27, 2014

Perhaps the most difficult teaching of Jesus is his admonition to ‘turn the other cheek.’ Using examples from her own ministry and from the films ‘Witness’ and ‘To Kill a Mockingbird,’ Rev. Karen Stokes explores how we might return no one evil for evil.


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Sermon: Love That Never Lets Go

Rev. Chandler Stokes

Sermon     Easter Lent
Sunday, April 20, 2014

Easter Sunday worship with Rev. Chandler Stokes preaching on John 20:11--18. God's love does not let go. God is able to hold on—death is no barrier to God's love. Even death on a cross.


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