Dance of Death

Dance of Death, Isaiah 55:1–5, Ninth Sunday after Pentecost (Proper 13), August 2, 2020 ************************************************************************* A Concordia Seminary professor, Dr. David Schmitt, described the first recorded history of the idea of the Dance of Death. He tells how the Treschel Brothers, in their printing of the Old Testament in 1538, included a picture of life after […]

Treasure of God

Treasure of God, Deuteronomy 7:6–9; Romans 8:28-39 Matthew 13:44–52 Eight Sunday after Pentecost (Proper 12), July 26, 2020 ************************************************************************* Does it appear to you, as it does to me, that our world is careening toward a cliff? The old foe wants us to lose hope and is bringing to bear an onslaught of troubles, laying […]

We Live in Hope

We Live in Hope, Isaiah 44:6–8, Seventh Sunday after Pentecost (Proper 11), July 19, 2020 ************************************************************ Our Old Testament reading is nestled within a larger dialogue of a chapter in Isaiah that glorifies the God of creation over the idols made by man, while reminding us that the creator God is also a redeeming God. In […]

Hide and Seek with God

Hide and Seek with God, Isaiah 55:10–13, Sixth Sunday after Pentecost 6 (Proper 10), July 12, 2020 ************************************************************************* The prophet Isaiah proclaims that the word of the Lord “shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it” (11). So today while being made aware of our own frailty, […]

God Bless America

God Bless America, Zechariah 9:9–12, Fifth Sunday after Pentecost (Proper 9), July 5, 2020 ************************************************************************* Happy Birthday America! 244 years ago was the official severing of ties between the original 13 colonies and the rule of Great Britain. But it also represents the core of our beliefs, the very makeup of our identity as citizens of […]

The Truth of the Matter

The Truth of the Matter, Jeremiah 28:5–9, Fourth Sunday after Pentecost (Proper 8), June 28, 2020 ************************************************************************* On May 13, 1940, Winston Churchill addressed the British parliament as he was about to become prime minister. Hitler’s troops had already invaded Poland, and they had just begun their Blitzkrieg advance into France, Belgium, and the Netherlands. War […]

Amazing Trust

Amazing Trust, Jeremiah 20:7–13, Third Sunday after Pentecost (Proper 7), June 21, 2020 ************************************************************ Name the author of this quote: “O Lord, you deceived me, and I was deceived; you overpowered me and prevailed. I am ridiculed all day long; everyone mocks me. Whenever I speak, I cry out proclaiming violence and destruction. So the word […]

God’s Will

God’s Will, Exodus 19:2–8, Second Sunday after Pentecost (Proper 6), June 14, 2020 ************************************************************************* The Sundays after Pentecost bring us to some of the basics of the Christian faith. This morning we focus our attention on the will of God. His divine will is one of those hidden parts of God, which is often only revealed […]

In the Beginning

In the Beginning, Genesis 1:1-2:4a, The Holy Trinity, June 7, 2020 ************************************************************************* Did you think our reading was particularly long this morning? I guess we can consider ourselves lucky today because I am reminded of a dentist who was asked at the last minute to read in a church service. A typo in the bulletin said […]

The Work of the Holy Spirit

The Work of the Holy Spirit, Acts 2:1–21; John 7:37–39, The Day of Pentecost, May 31, 2020 ************************************************************ Today is the birthday of the Church. God’s people should celebrate this day in much the same way we celebrate anniversaries and birthdays as individuals and institutions. Yet the festival of Pentecost is something of a forgotten stepchild […]