This Sunday's sermon was about "keeping the Elijah Chair". Elijah is the beloved prophet of God who was swept up into heave in a whirlwind and was said to return to herald the coming of the Messiah. This Sunday's gospel scripture is the story of the Transfiguration from the Gospel of Matthew where Moses and Elijah descend onto a mountain top and join Jesus. Moses' ministry parallels that of Jesus in that he was the liberator of the Israelite people and Jesus is seen as Christian as the spiritual liberator of humanity. The concept of the Elijah Chair in my sermon is not based on the Jewish custom of the Elijah Chair but on a concept I experienced working at a Lutheran Church camp as a young college student. Our Lenten series will be about "keeping the Elijah Chair"--that is, about anticipating and making space for those yet to come and those who are yet to join us in our lives, in our Church, etc... Attached is a link to one of the examples of a Church that I have found that I believe is an example of a faith community keeping the Elijah Chair and that is an example for us to reflect on.
Today's scripture is Matthew 7:1-12 & 24-27.
Our Broadway series is from Lent:
No Day But Today: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fh5JOqu1PLg
Seasons Of Love: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UvyHuse6buY
Will I: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=okMdC9-YqrE
I'll Cover You: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fi9srqFqCFo
Today's modern lesson is from the Broadway play Raisin in the Sun: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0NMOnxJsFq8
and the sermon is a reflection on Mathew 4:1-11 (The story of the Temptation of Jesus by Satan) as well as a quote from Dr. King's "Letter from the Birmingham Jail"
This sermon kick's off CCC's 200th anniversary year of celebration. It was a mostly musical service of 19th century period music. There were two videos we played of modern music, but which stories are set in this period. They are both very powerful and I hope you take a listen or watch them....
In this season of Christmas, we encounter a surprising genealogy of Jesus in the Gospel of Matthew. There are four Kings in the line of David who are not included, and four women, plus Mary, who are. Who is included and who is left out of the story of Jesus' lineage tells us a lot about who the gospel writer understood Jesus to be. Also, taking the time to read the stories of the four kings and four women, to discover what about them might have gotten them excluded or included in Jesus' genealogy is a great metaphor for slowing down in the Christmas season to reflect on the nature of who Jesus is. Instead of rushing to the birth story, instead of skipping ahead to the three wise men, we are invited to explore the stories of these eight people who make this genealogy unusual. Their stories help us to understand the story of Jesus. Merry Christmas. Rev. Jason
A reading from Matthew 1:1-17.