Sunday, May 24, 2015

"God is Moving"


John 14:23-31New International Version (NIV)

23 Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. 24 Anyone who does not love me will not obey my teaching. These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me.

25 “All this I have spoken while still with you. 26 But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. 27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

28 “You heard me say, ‘I am going away and I am coming back to you.’ If you loved me, you would be glad that I am going to the Father, for the Father is greater than I. 29 I have told you now before it happens, so that when it does happen you will believe. 30 I will not say much more to you, for the prince of this world is coming. He has no hold over me, 31 but he comes so that the world may learn that I love the Father and do exactly what my Father has commanded me.

“Come now; let us leave.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

May 17, 2015, Sermon



Mark 16:14-20 New International Version (NIV)




 Later Jesus appeared to the Eleven as they were eating; he rebuked them for their lack of faith and their stubborn refusal to believe those who had seen him after he had risen.

 He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.  Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.  And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues;  they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.”

 After the Lord Jesus had spoken to them, he was taken up into heaven and he sat at the right hand of God.  Then the disciples went out and preached everywhere, and the Lord worked with them and confirmed his word by the signs that accompanied it.




Sunday, May 10, 2015

"God's Grace in BAGS"


John 16:23-30New International Version (NIV)

23 In that day you will no longer ask me anything. Very truly I tell you, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. 24 Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.

25 “Though I have been speaking figuratively, a time is coming when I will no longer use this kind of language but will tell you plainly about my Father. 26 In that day you will ask in my name. I am not saying that I will ask the Father on your behalf. 27 No, the Father himself loves you because you have loved meand have believed that I came from God. 28 I came from the Father and entered the world; now I am leaving the world and going back to the Father.”

29 Then Jesus’ disciples said, “Now you are speaking clearly and without figures of speech. 30 Now we can see that you know all things and that you do not even need to have anyone ask you questions. This makes us believe that you came from God.”

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Sermon May 3, 2015



John 16:5-15New International Version (NIV)


but now I am going to him who sent me. None of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ Rather, you are filled with grief because I have said these things. But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. When he comes, he will prove the world to be in the wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment: about sin, because people do not believe in me; about righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; and about judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned.

“I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will glorify me because it is from me that he will receive what he will make known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will receive from me what he will make known to you.”


Sunday, April 26, 2015

"At a Crossroads"


1 Peter 2:11-20New International Version (NIV)
Living Godly Lives in a Pagan Society

11 Dear friends, I urge you, as foreigners and exiles, to abstain from sinful desires, which wage war against your soul. 12 Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.

13 Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human authority: whether to the emperor, as the supreme authority, 14 or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right. 15 For it is God’s will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish people. 16 Live as free people, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as God’s slaves. 17 Show proper respect to everyone, love the family of believers, fear God, honor the emperor.

18 Slaves, in reverent fear of God submit yourselves to your masters, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh. 19 For it is commendable if someone bears up under the pain of unjust suffering because they are conscious of God. 20 But how is it to your credit if you receive a beating for doing wrong and endure it? But if you suffer for doing good and you endure it, this is commendable before God.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

"Not Afraid To Step In The Poo"


John 10:11-16New International Version (NIV)

11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12 The hired hand is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. 13 The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.

14 “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— 15 just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep. 16 I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

"Do Not Disbelieve"


John 20:19-31New International Version (NIV)
Jesus Appears to His Disciples

19 On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jewish leaders, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” 20 After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord.

21 Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.” 22 And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive anyone’s sins, their sins are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”
Jesus Appears to Thomas

24 Now Thomas (also known as Didymus[a]), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. 25 So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord!”

But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”

26 A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” 27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”

28 Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!”

29 Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed;blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”
The Purpose of John’s Gospel

30 Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. 31 But these are written that you may believe[b] that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

"Lord, please give me Eas_er"


John 20:1-18New International Version (NIV)
The Empty Tomb

20 Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalenewent to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance.2 So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him!”

3 So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. 4 Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. 5 He bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in. 6 Then Simon Peter came along behind him and went straight into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, 7 as well as the cloth that had been wrapped around Jesus’ head. The cloth was still lying in its place, separate from the linen. 8 Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and believed. 9 (They still did not understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead.) 10 Then the disciples went back to where they were staying.
Jesus Appears to Mary Magdalene

11 Now Mary stood outside the tomb crying. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb 12 and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus’ body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot.

13 They asked her, “Woman, why are you crying?”

“They have taken my Lord away,” she said, “and I don’t know where they have put him.” 14 At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus.

15 He asked her, “Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?”

Thinking he was the gardener, she said, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.”

16 Jesus said to her, “Mary.”

She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means “Teacher”).

17 Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’”

18 Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: “I have seen the Lord!” And she told them that he had said these things to her.

"Cries From the Depths"


John 19:1-42New International Version (NIV)
Jesus Sentenced to Be Crucified
19 Then Pilate took Jesus and had him flogged. 2 The soldiers twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on his head. They clothed him in a purple robe3 and went up to him again and again, saying, “Hail, king of the Jews!” And they slapped him in the face.
4 Once more Pilate came out and said to the Jews gathered there, “Look, I am bringing him out to you to let you know that I find no basis for a charge against him.” 5 When Jesus came out wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe,Pilate said to them, “Here is the man!”
6 As soon as the chief priests and their officials saw him, they shouted, “Crucify! Crucify!”
But Pilate answered, “You take him and crucify him. As for me, I find no basis for a charge against him.”
7 The Jewish leaders insisted, “We have a law, and according to that law he must die, because he claimed to be the Son of God.”
8 When Pilate heard this, he was even more afraid, 9 and he went back inside the palace. “Where do you come from?” he asked Jesus, but Jesus gave him no answer. 10 “Do you refuse to speak to me?” Pilate said. “Don’t you realize I have power either to free you or to crucify you?”
11 Jesus answered, “You would have no power over me if it were not given to you from above. Therefore the one who handed me over to you is guilty of a greater sin.”
12 From then on, Pilate tried to set Jesus free, but the Jewish leaders kept shouting, “If you let this man go, you are no friend of Caesar. Anyone who claims to be a king opposes Caesar.”
13 When Pilate heard this, he brought Jesus out and sat down on the judge’s seat at a place known as the Stone Pavement (which in Aramaic is Gabbatha).14 It was the day of Preparation of the Passover; it was about noon.
“Here is your king,” Pilate said to the Jews.
15 But they shouted, “Take him away! Take him away! Crucify him!”
“Shall I crucify your king?” Pilate asked.
“We have no king but Caesar,” the chief priests answered.
16 Finally Pilate handed him over to them to be crucified.
The Crucifixion of Jesus
So the soldiers took charge of Jesus. 17 Carrying his own cross, he went out to the place of the Skull (which in Aramaic is called Golgotha). 18 There they crucified him, and with him two others—one on each side and Jesus in the middle.
19 Pilate had a notice prepared and fastened to the cross. It read: jesus of nazareth, the king of the jews. 20 Many of the Jews read this sign, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city, and the sign was written in Aramaic, Latin and Greek. 21 The chief priests of the Jews protested to Pilate, “Do not write ‘The King of the Jews,’ but that this man claimed to be king of the Jews.”
22 Pilate answered, “What I have written, I have written.”
23 When the soldiers crucified Jesus, they took his clothes, dividing them into four shares, one for each of them, with the undergarment remaining. This garment was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom.
24 “Let’s not tear it,” they said to one another. “Let’s decide by lot who will get it.”
This happened that the scripture might be fulfilled that said,
“They divided my clothes among them
and cast lots for my garment.”[a]
So this is what the soldiers did.
25 Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. 26 When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman,[b] here is your son,” 27 and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home.
The Death of Jesus
28 Later, knowing that everything had now been finished, and so that Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, “I am thirsty.” 29 A jar of wine vinegar was there, so they soaked a sponge in it, put the sponge on a stalk of the hyssop plant, and lifted it to Jesus’ lips. 30 When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
31 Now it was the day of Preparation, and the next day was to be a special Sabbath. Because the Jewish leaders did not want the bodies left on the crosses during the Sabbath, they asked Pilate to have the legs broken and the bodies taken down. 32 The soldiers therefore came and broke the legs of the first man who had been crucified with Jesus, and then those of the other. 33 But when they came to Jesus and found that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. 34 Instead, one of the soldiers pierced Jesus’ side with a spear, bringing a sudden flow of blood and water. 35 The man who saw it has given testimony, and his testimony is true. He knows that he tells the truth, and he testifies so that you also may believe. 36 These things happened so that the scripture would be fulfilled: “Not one of his bones will be broken,”[c] 37 and, as another scripture says, “They will look on the one they have pierced.”[d]
The Burial of Jesus
38 Later, Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate for the body of Jesus. Now Joseph was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly because he feared the Jewish leaders. With Pilate’s permission, he came and took the body away. 39 He was accompanied by Nicodemus, the man who earlier had visited Jesus at night. Nicodemus brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about seventy-five pounds.[e] 40 Taking Jesus’ body, the two of them wrapped it, with the spices, in strips of linen. This was in accordance with Jewish burial customs. 41 At the place where Jesus was crucified, there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb, in which no one had ever been laid. 42 Because it was the Jewish day of Preparation and since the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.

"Unity and Blessing"

Pilate then called together the chief priests and the rulers and the people, and said to them, "You have brought this man before me as one subverting the people.  See now, I have examined him before you and have found nothing in this man guilty of any of your charges against him, and neither did Herod, for he sent him back to us.  Mark this, he has done nothing worthy of death.  I will have him punished and release him."
Now at the feast it was the governor's custom to release to the crowd any one prisoner whom they asked for.  They had then a notorious prisoner named Barabbas.  He was in prison with the rebels who had committed murder during the insurrection in the city.  Pilate knew that it was out of malice that the chief priests handed Jesus over.  Therefore he said to them, "Do you want me to release for you Barabbas or Jesus who is called Christ?"
The chief priests and elders persuaded the crowd to ask for Barabbas and destroy Jesus.
Pilate asked them again, "Which of the two do you want me to release for you?"
And they cried out all together, saying, "Away with this man, and release for us Barabbas."
While Pilate was sitting in the judgment seat, his wife sent him a message: "Do not have anything to do with that man; I have suffered much over him today in a dream."
Again Pilate addressed them, for he wished to release Jesus.  He said to them, "What shall I do then with Jesus who is called Christ?  What shall I do with him whom you call the King of the Jews?"
They cried out, "Crucify Him!"
Pilate said to them, "Why, what evil has he done?  I have found no guilt worthy of death in him; I will therefore punish him and let him go."
They cried out all the louder, "Crucify him! Crucify him!"
Then Pilate took Jesus and had him flogged.  The soldiers of the governor led him awas into the praetorium.  They gathered the whole band of soldiers around him.  They stripped him and put a purple robe on him.  When they had woven a crown of thorns, they put it on his head and a reed in his right hand, and they knelt before him and mocked him, saying, "Hail, King of the Jews!"  They spat on him and took the reed and struck him on the head.  They knelt down and did him homage.
Pilate went out again and said to them, "See, I bring him out to you that you may know I find him not guilty."  So Jesus came out wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe.  Pilate said to them, "Behold the man!"
When the chief priests and the officers saw him, they cried, "Crucify him!  Crucify him!"
Pilate said to them, "Take him yourselves and crucify him, for I do not find him guilty."
The Jews answered him, "We have a law, and by that law he ought to die, because he made himself the Son of God."
When Pilate heard this, he was more afraid and went again into the judgement hall and said to Jesus, "Where are you from?"  Jesus gave him no answer.  Then Pilate said to him, "Do you refuse to speak to me?  Do you not know that I have power to crucify you, and I have power to release you?"
Jesus answered "You would not have any power at all over me, unless it had been given to you from above.  For that reason he who handed me over to you has the greater sin."
This prompted Pilate to go on trying to release him, but the Jews cried out, "If you let this man go, you are no friend of Caesar.  Everyone who makes himself a king sets himself against Caesar."
When Pilate heard these words, he brought Jesus out and sat down in the judgement seat in a place that is called the Pavement or, in Hebrew, Gabbatha.  It was the Preparation of the Passover, about the sixth hour.  He said to the Jews, "Behold your king!"
Theyt cried out, "Away with him, away with him, crucify him!"
Pilate said unto them, "Shall I crucify your king?"
The chief priests answered, "We have no king but Caesar."
When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but rather a riot was underway, he took water and washed his hands before the crowd, saying, "I am innocent of the blood of this man; see to it yourselves."
Then all the people responded, "His blood be on us and on our children."
Then Pilate, wishing to satisfy the crowd, gave sentence that it should be as they demanded.  He released to them Barabbas for whom they asked, the man who had been thrown into prison for insurrection and murder.  He had Jesus flogged and then gave him over to their will to be crucified.  The soldiers mocked him, stripped him of the purple robe, put his own clothes on him, and led him out to crucify him

Saturday, April 4, 2015




Join us for the Celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Son Rise Worship with Holy Communion at  6:00 am
Easter Breakfast 7:15 am
Resurrection Worship with Holy Communion at 9:00 am
Friday evening  through Saturday: Jesus’ body rested in the tomb.  Jesus descends into Hell to condemn Satan once and for all and proclaim His Victory over sin and death and the devil himself.  1st Peter 4:6

That is the end of Holy Week.  Jesus is glorified, lifted up on the cross to be our sacrifice.  He is obedient to His Father even to death.  You are forgiven.  Jesus has taken your sin, paid the price of death, because that’s what sin brings.  You are forgiven!!

Friday, April 3, 2015


Good Friday Worship at Divine Shepherd Lutheran Church and Preschool:

Service of darkness,  Friday at 7:00  

Ye who think of sin but lightly,
Nor suppose the evil great
Here may view its nature rightly, 
Here its guilt may estimate,
mark the sacrifice appointed 
See who bears the awful load
Tis the Word, the Lord's anointed
Son of man and Son of God

LSB 451  Stricken, Smitten, and Afflicted

Thursday, April 2, 2015


Join us tonight for Worship and the Lord's Supper.
Maundy Thursday Worship at 7:00 

Good Friday Worship 7:00

Easter Son Rise Service 6:00 am
Easter Breakfast 7:15 am

Resurrection Service 9:00 am  

Monday, March 30, 2015

Palm Sunday at Divine Shepherd Lutheran Church and Preschool

Sunday, March 29, 2015

"How Does Our King Come to Us?"


Matthew 21:1-9New International Version (NIV)
Jesus Comes to Jerusalem as King

21 As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, 2 saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied there, with her colt by her. Untie them and bring them to me. 3 If anyone says anything to you, say that the Lord needs them, and he will send them right away.”

4 This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet:

5 “Say to Daughter Zion,
‘See, your king comes to you,
gentle and riding on a donkey,
and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’”[a]

6 The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. 7 They brought the donkey and the colt and placed their cloaks on them for Jesus to sit on. 8 A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. 9 The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted,

“Hosanna[b] to the Son of David!”
“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”[c]
“Hosanna[d] in the highest heaven!”

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Easter is for you.



Easter is for you. The Easter services we have at Divine Shepherd are the best attended services of the entire year. Jesus has risen from the dead! He has freed us from death’s grasp and eternal condemnation, as well as forgiven all our sins. As I greet everyone, I get the sense from some that Easter is for someone else. Occasionally someone even says to me, “I am just here for my family or friends”, or “I only go to church on Easter Sunday”. Easter is for everyone, Easter is for you.


There is a perception out there that Easter is only for the good people, or the people who have their lives in order and all their “crazy” under control and closeted. That perception is not correct. Look at the people that Jesus associated with, healed, and encouraged during His lifetime. Jesus spent His time with tax collectors and sinners. These were not the socially elite-actually the exact opposite. Tax collectors were Jews who worked for the Roman government, whom no one trusted, to collect taxes, which no one likes to pay. The sinners were those who were not Jewish. Their pedigree did not lead back to Abraham, so they were not part of the church. Jesus spent time with them, got to know them, healed and forgave them. He did not tell them to get it together first. He had mercy on them.


Jesus was always with those whom society struggled with, and those that struggle with society. He would heal the blind and deaf. The crippled would be restored; withered hands and legs that did not work were reinstated as Jesus had mercy on them. Jesus cast out demons, touched and healed the unclean with Leprosy. Jesus talked with the prostitutes and the adulterers. Jesus confronted those who believed incorrectly. He showed mercy to all, no matter who they were, or what they were struggling with. First He would heal their bodies, then He would forgive their sins. Healing and mercy for the body and the soul for everyone no matter who they were or what they had done. Jesus showed mercy to everyone.

                                                                                                            Even

at the end of His life Jesus was showing mercy to others. “ Two others, who were criminals, were led away to be put to death with him. One of the criminals who were hanged railed at him, saying, “Are you not the Christ? Save yourself and us!”  But the other rebuked him, saying, “Do you not fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? And we indeed justly, for we are receiving the due reward of our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.”  And he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”
 And he said to him, “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.” Luke 23


Even at Jesus’ death He was surrounded by those who did not fit in and He showed them mercy. Moments from death, Jesus gave hope and healing to the thief that had faith. This thief believed the man on the cross, dying next to him was God’s Son, the Savior of the world. This thief went to heaven, not because he had it all figured out, not because he was a great person, but because he believed that Jesus was God’s Son sent to forgive his sin.


Easter is for all of us because Jesus came to forgive the sins of all of us. He did not wait for us to get our lives together. He did for us what we could not do for ourselves. Your sin is forgiven because of Jesus, no matter what it is, how bad it is, how long you have struggled with it, you are forgiven because Jesus forgave you. The amazing thing about Easter is that Jesus forgave the sins of all people, even those who don’t believe in Him. Jesus and Easter, the cross and empty tomb, the suffering and beatings Jesus endured is for YOU! Jesus’ resurrection, from the dead, His peace, comfort and hope is for YOU! Jesus’ promise that He will be with you always, especially when life spins out of control or your grief is great, is for you. Jesus’ mercy, love and forgiveness is not determined by you or anything you do. Jesus’ mercy, love and forgiveness is for you because Jesus loves you.


Easter is for you! We hope you will come and be a part of this great Easter celebration so you too can live in the Joy of Easter each and every day, because Easter and Jesus and his love are for you!!



Celebrate the resurrection!


Pastor Randy Sturzenbecher











Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Easter Egg hunt, Divine Shepherd Lutheran, Black Hawk

Join us this Saturday, March 28th at 10:00 am for Divine Shepherd's first Easter Egg hunt.   Bring your kids.  Bring your grand kids.  Bring your neighbors kids!   Join us for a great time of fun and fellowship!  

Holy Week Schedule


 Holy Week Worship and activities schedule:

Saturday March 28th:  10:00 am
           Community Easter Egg hunt at Divine Shepherd Lutheran Church and Preschool

Palm Sunday Worship  8:00 & 10:30 am  With Holy Communion

No Wednesday evening Family night or Confirmation

Maundy Thursday:  7:00 pm with Holy Communion and the stripping of the altar

Good Friday:    7:00 am  Service of Darkness

Easter Sunday
          Son Rise Worship:   7:00 am  With Holy Communion
          Resurrection Celebration  9:00 am  With Holy Communion


Sunday, March 22, 2015

" Do We Need a Snake"




The Lord said to Moses, “Make a snake and put it up on a pole; anyone who is bitten can look at it and live.”  So Moses made a bronze snake and put it up on a pole. Then when anyone was bitten by a snake and looked at the bronze snake, they lived.








Sunday, March 15, 2015

"Misplaced Ambition"


Mark 10:35-45New International Version (NIV)
The Request of James and John

35 Then James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came to him. “Teacher,” they said, “we want you to do for us whatever we ask.”

36 “What do you want me to do for you?” he asked.

37 They replied, “Let one of us sit at your right and the other at your left in your glory.”

38 “You don’t know what you are asking,” Jesus said. “Can you drink the cup I drink or be baptized with the baptism I am baptized with?”

39 “We can,” they answered.

Jesus said to them, “You will drink the cup I drink and be baptized with the baptism I am baptized with, 40 but to sit at my right or left is not for me to grant. These places belong to those for whom they have been prepared.”

41 When the ten heard about this, they became indignant with James and John.42 Jesus called them together and said, “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. 43 Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, 44 and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. 45 For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

Sunday, March 8, 2015

We Preach Christ Crucified- Is There Anything Else?




Jesus Clears the Temple Courts

When it was almost time for the Jewish Passover, Jesus went up to Jerusalem. In the temple courts he found people selling cattle, sheep and doves, and others sitting at tables exchanging money. So he made a whip out of cords, and drove all from the temple courts, both sheep and cattle; he scattered the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. To those who sold doves he said, “Get these out of here! Stop turning my Father’s house into a market!” His disciples remembered that it is written: “Zeal for your house will consume me.”[a]

The Jews then responded to him, “What sign can you show us to prove your authority to do all this?”

Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days.”

They replied, “It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and you are going to raise it in three days?” But the temple he had spoken of was his body. After he was raised from the dead, his disciples recalled what he had said. Then they believed the scripture and the words that Jesus had spoken.








Sunday, March 1, 2015

"Tempted Savior...Tempted People"


Mark 1:9-15New International Version (NIV)
The Baptism and Testing of Jesus

9 At that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. 10 Just as Jesus was coming up out of the water, he saw heaven being torn open and the Spirit descending on him like a dove. 11 And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.”

12 At once the Spirit sent him out into the wilderness, 13 and he was in the wilderness forty days, being tempted[a] by Satan. He was with the wild animals, and angels attended him.
Jesus Announces the Good News

14 After John was put in prison, Jesus went into Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God. 15 “The time has come,” he said. “The kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!”

Sunday, February 22, 2015

"Who Does Jesus Say you Are?"


Mark 8:27-38New International Version (NIV)
Peter Declares That Jesus Is the Messiah

27 Jesus and his disciples went on to the villages around Caesarea Philippi. On the way he asked them, “Who do people say I am?”

28 They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, one of the prophets.”

29 “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”

Peter answered, “You are the Messiah.”

30 Jesus warned them not to tell anyone about him.
Jesus Predicts His Death

31 He then began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many thingsand be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and after three days rise again. 32 He spoke plainly about this, and Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him.

33 But when Jesus turned and looked at his disciples, he rebuked Peter. “Get behind me, Satan!” he said. “You do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns.”
The Way of the Cross

34 Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 35 For whoever wants to save their life[a] will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it. 36 What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? 37 Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul? 38 If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of themwhen he comes in his Father’s glory with the holy angels.”

Sunday, February 15, 2015

"Epic Love Story"


Matthew 17:1-9New International Version (NIV)
The Transfiguration

17 After six days Jesus took with him Peter, James and John the brother of James, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. 2 There he was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light. 3 Just then there appeared before them Moses and Elijah, talking with Jesus.

4 Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good for us to be here. If you wish, I will put up three shelters—one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.”

5 While he was still speaking, a bright cloud covered them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. Listen to him!”

6 When the disciples heard this, they fell facedown to the ground, terrified. 7 But Jesus came and touched them. “Get up,” he said. “Don’t be afraid.” 8 When they looked up, they saw no one except Jesus.

9 As they were coming down the mountain, Jesus instructed them, “Don’t tell anyone what you have seen, until the Son of Man has been raised from the dead.”

Sunday, February 8, 2015

"In Spite of Everything"


2 Corinthians 11:19-12:9New International Version (NIV)

19 You gladly put up with fools since you are so wise! 20 In fact, you even put up with anyone who enslaves you or exploits you or takes advantage of you or puts on airs or slaps you in the face. 21 To my shame I admit that we were too weak for that!

Whatever anyone else dares to boast about—I am speaking as a fool—I also dare to boast about. 22 Are they Hebrews? So am I. Are they Israelites? So am I. Are they Abraham’s descendants? So am I. 23 Are they servants of Christ? (I am out of my mind to talk like this.) I am more. I have worked much harder,been in prison more frequently, been flogged more severely, and been exposed to death again and again. 24 Five times I received from the Jews the forty lashes minus one. 25 Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was pelted with stones, three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea, 26 I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my fellow Jews, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false believers. 27 I have labored and toiled and have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food; I have been cold and naked. 28 Besides everything else, I face daily the pressure of my concern for all the churches. 29 Who is weak, and I do not feel weak? Who is led into sin, and I do not inwardly burn?

30 If I must boast, I will boast of the things that show my weakness. 31 The God and Father of the Lord Jesus, who is to be praised forever, knows that I am not lying. 32 In Damascus the governor under King Aretas had the city of the Damascenes guarded in order to arrest me. 33 But I was lowered in a basket from a window in the wall and slipped through his hands.
Paul’s Vision and His Thorn

12 I must go on boasting. Although there is nothing to be gained, I will go on to visions and revelations from the Lord. 2 I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know—God knows. 3 And I know that this man—whether in the body or apart from the body I do not know, but God knows— 4 was caught up to paradise and heard inexpressible things, things that no one is permitted to tell. 5 I will boast about a man like that, but I will not boast about myself, except about my weaknesses. 6 Even if I should choose to boast, I would not be a fool, because I would be speaking the truth. But I refrain, so no one will think more of me than is warranted by what I do or say, 7 or because of these surpassingly great revelations. Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. 8 Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

"Faith Brings Faithfulness"


1 Corinthians 12:12-27New International Version (NIV)
Unity and Diversity in the Body

12 Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. 13 For we were all baptized by[a] one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. 14 Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.

15 Now if the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. 16 And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? 18 But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. 19 If they were all one part, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many parts, but one body.

21 The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!” 22 On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23 and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, 24 while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, 25 so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. 26 If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.

27 Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

#3 "Faith Brings Faithfullness"-- Where is it right or wrong to receive the Lord's Supper?



1 Corinthians 11:23-29New International Version (NIV)

23 For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, 24 and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.” 25 In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.” 26 For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.
27 So then, whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord. 28 Everyone ought to examine themselves before they eat of the bread and drink from the cup. 29 For those who eat and drink without discerning the body of Christ eat and drink judgment on themselves.






Sunday, January 18, 2015

"Is the Bread and Wine Really Jesus' Body and Blood?"


Matthew 26:17-30New International Version (NIV)
The Last Supper

17 On the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread, the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Where do you want us to make preparations for you to eat the Passover?”

18 He replied, “Go into the city to a certain man and tell him, ‘The Teacher says: My appointed time is near. I am going to celebrate the Passover with my disciples at your house.’” 19 So the disciples did as Jesus had directed them and prepared the Passover.

26 While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is my body.”

27 Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. 28 This is my blood of the[a] covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. 29 I tell you, I will not drink from this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.”

30 When they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Four Difficult Questions of Faith-- #1- Why Go To Church?



Acts 2:36-47New International Version (NIV)


36 “Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Messiah.”37 When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?"38 Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.”40 With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” 41 Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.

The Fellowship of the Believers

42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. 43 Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. 44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.








Friday, January 9, 2015

 Faith and faithfulness are never easy.  Hearing God’s Word and being faithful to what He promises is always in question, especially when dealing with the Lord’s Supper.  The world around us and our sinful nature is constantly challenging the Word of God and His gifts to us.  That leaves us with questions.
Over the next four weeks we will look at the four most common questions dealing with The Lord’s supper.
Here are your top four questions
#1 Why go to Church?
#2 The Real Presence of Christ.   Is the bread and wine really Jesus Body and Blood?
#3 Examine yourself.  When is it right or wrong to receive the Lord’s Supper?
#4 Closed Communion.  Why can’t everyone come to the Lord‘s Supper?
  And in the next four sermons, from God’s Word  and promises we will find answers.  

Sunday, January 4, 2015

"You are Epiphanied!"


Matthew 2:1-12New International Version (NIV)
The Magi Visit the Messiah

2 After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod,Magi[a] from the east came to Jerusalem 2 and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.”

3 When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him.4 When he had called together all the people’s chief priests and teachers of the law, he asked them where the Messiah was to be born. 5 “In Bethlehem in Judea,” they replied, “for this is what the prophet has written:

6 “‘But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;
for out of you will come a ruler
who will shepherd my people Israel.’[b]”

7 Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared. 8 He sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and search carefully for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him.”

9 After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen when it rose went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. 11 On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with giftsof gold, frankincense and myrrh. 12 And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

"Jesus is God's Faithfulness"


Jesus Presented in the Temple

22 When the time came for the purification rites required by the Law of Moses,Joseph and Mary took him to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord 23 (as it is written in the Law of the Lord, “Every firstborn male is to be consecrated to the Lord”[a]), 24 and to offer a sacrifice in keeping with what is said in the Law of the Lord: “a pair of doves or two young pigeons.”[b]
25 Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was on him. 26 It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. 27 Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required, 28 Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying:
29 “Sovereign Lord, as you have promised,
you may now dismiss[c] your servant in peace.
30 For my eyes have seen your salvation,
31 which you have prepared in the sight of all nations:
32 a light for revelation to the Gentiles,
and the glory of your people Israel.”
33 The child’s father and mother marveled at what was said about him. 34 Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, 35 so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.”
36 There was also a prophet, Anna, the daughter of Penuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband seven years after her marriage, 37 and then was a widow until she was eighty-four.[d] She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying. 38 Coming up to them at that very moment, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem.
39 When Joseph and Mary had done everything required by the Law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee to their own town of Nazareth. 40 And the child grew and became strong; he was filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was on him.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

"The Word Loving Us"


John 1:1-14New International Version (NIV)
The Word Became Flesh

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life,and that life was the light of all mankind. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome[a] it.

6 There was a man sent from God whose name was John. 7 He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all might believe.8 He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light.

9 The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. 12 Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.

14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

"Humbled by a Visitor"


Luke 2:1-20New International Version (NIV)
The Birth of Jesus

2 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while[a] Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register.

4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,


14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

"Humbled by a Visitor"


Luke 2:1-20New International Version (NIV)
The Birth of Jesus

2 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while[a] Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register.

4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,


14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.


Monday, December 22, 2014

Join us Christmas Eve for a wonderful evening of Carols and Christ.

We gather to Worship at 6:00 pm

Christmas Day we Worship at 9:00 with Holy Communion.

"O Come let us adore Him"

Sunday, December 21, 2014

"Jesus Drives a Red Car, God Drives a Green One"


John 1:19-28English Standard Version (ESV)
The Testimony of John the Baptist

19 And this is the testimony of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, “Who are you?” 20 He confessed, and did not deny, but confessed, “I am not the Christ.” 21 And they asked him, “What then? Are you Elijah?” He said, “I am not.” “Are you the Prophet?” And he answered, “No.” 22 So they said to him, “Who are you? We need to give an answer to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?” 23 He said, “I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, ‘Make straight[a] the way of the Lord,’ as the prophet Isaiah said.”

24 (Now they had been sent from the Pharisees.) 25 They asked him, “Then why are you baptizing, if you are neither the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?”26 John answered them, “I baptize with water, but among you stands one you do not know, 27 even he who comes after me, the strap of whose sandal I am not worthy to untie.” 28 These things took place in Bethany across the Jordan, where John was baptizing.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Sunday December 14, 2014, Sermon



Matthew 11:2-10


Now when John heard in prison about the deeds of the Christ, he sent word by his disciples and said to him, “Are you the one who is to come, or shall we look for another?” And Jesus answered them, “Go and tell John what you hear and see: the blind receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers[a] are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised up, and the poor have good news preached to them. And blessed is the one who is not offended by me.”

As they went away, Jesus began to speak to the crowds concerning John: “What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken by the wind? What then did you go out to see? A man dressed in soft clothing? Behold, those who wear soft clothing are in kings' houses. What then did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet. This is he of whom it is written,

“‘Behold, I send my messenger before your face,

who will prepare your way before you.’


Monday, December 8, 2014

Holiday worship schedule





Advent and Christmas, what wonderful times to hear the story of our Savior and our salvation.   Join us on our Advent journey and Christmas Celebration.

Midweek Advent services.   Humbled by the Child
Wednesdays  7:15
     Dec. 10th A Humbled Couple
     Dec. 17th Chosen to be Humbled


Christmas Eve Candlelight Service    6:00 pm  
     Humbled by a Visitor

Christmas Day  9:00 am
     The Humbled Son of God

New Years Eve  December 31st        7:15 pm
     In Humility learning to Number our Days

December newsletter






There is a great line from a movie I like that fits this time of the year. The movie is Monte Walsh. Tom Selleck plays Monte, a cowboy that refuses to change with the times and Barry Corbin plays Bob the storekeeper. When one of the young cowboys can’t wait to go to the Saloon after a long cattle drive Bob says “slow down and you’ll have a more harmonious outcome.” That quote is exactly right for Advent.
Since the Halloween decorations have come down everyone is rushing headlong toward Christmas. “Slow down and you’ll have a more harmonious outcome”! Before we celebrate God’s promised gift of a Savior, the Church slows down the hustle and bustle and focuses on Advent.

Advent is a time of preparation, hope, anticipation and excitement. Advent prepares the way of the King using 4 Sundays and 4 candles in the Advent wreath.On the first Sunday of Advent we lite one purple candle, the Prophecy candle or the Candle of Hope. This fist candle reminds us that Christmas was planned. St. Luke reminds us “While they were there the time came” The time for God to take on human flesh and blood the time for God to take on the sins of the world, the time for God to keep His promise to save us, all of us that we might have hope. Hope is a big part of Advent. We have the sure and certain hope of sins forgiven and our God who loves us and has sent Jesus for us.

On the Second Sunday of Advent we lite another purple candle. The second candle is the Bethlehem Candle or the preparation candle. Throughout the holidays from Thanksgiving to Christmas you have been preparing, preparing that great meal for family and friends, repairing your house for company, preparing the tree and the gifts. Advent is a time to make sure your spiritual house is ready for your King to meet you. Isaiah reminds us “Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him”. The crooked roads shall become straight, the rough ways smooth. And all mankind will see God’s salvation.‘ (Luke 3:4-6)

The Third Sunday of Advent we light the pink Candle. This is the Shepherd Candle or the Candle of Joy. The Shepherds in the fields were the first to hear the amazing news. “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; He is Christ the Lord”. The lowest in society were the first to hear the Good News. A Savior was born for them, for you, for all who are lonely and far off. This is God’s great love for the lowliest, the hopeless, the ones who feel they have no place and no hope. This Savior is born for them and for us.

The Fourth Sunday of Advent we lite the Angel Candle or the Candle of Love. The Angels tore open heaven and announced “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom His favor rests.” The message of the Angels could have just as easily been John 3:16 -17 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son…” The preparation of the 4th week is wrapped in God’s great love about to “live and dwell among us.”

And all of that preparation gives way to the 5th Candle, the Christ Candle. This one is white, like the spotless lamb of God sent to take our sins away. The 5th Candle is lit on Christmas Eve and from that lite all the candles of the candlelight service are lit. The light, Christ, has now come into the darkness of our sin filled world to live and die and rise again. The light has come! Jesus is here! God has kept His promise to save us!

That’s Advent. A time of preparation hope anticipation that we miss if we run directly into Christmas. “Slow down and you’ll have a more harmonious outcome” Slow down. Enjoy Advent. Enjoy God’s promises that lead us to our Saviors birth.

Anticipating His Coming

Pastor Randy



Sunday, December 7, 2014

"Behold, the Day is Coming"


Malachi 4:1-6English Standard Version (ESV)
The Great Day of the Lord

4 [a] “For behold, the day is coming, burning like an oven, when all the arrogant and all evildoers will be stubble. The day that is coming shall set them ablaze, says the Lord of hosts, so that it will leave them neither root nor branch. 2 But for you who fear my name, the sun of righteousness shall risewith healing in its wings. You shall go out leaping like calves from the stall.3 And you shall tread down the wicked, for they will be ashes under the soles of your feet, on the day when I act, says the Lord of hosts.

4 “Remember the law of my servant Moses, the statutes and rules[b] that I commanded him at Horeb for all Israel.

5 “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the great and awesome day of the Lord comes. 6 And he will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers, lest I come and strike the land with a decree of utter destruction.”[c]

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Sermon November 30 , 2014



The Triumphal Entry

21 Now when they drew near to Jerusalem and came to Bethphage, to the Mount of Olives, then Jesus sent two disciples, 2 saying to them, “Go into the village in front of you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her. Untie them and bring them to me. 3 If anyone says anything to you, you shall say, ‘The Lord needs them,’ and he will send them at once.” 4 This took place to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet, saying,


5 “Say to the daughter of Zion,

‘Behold, your king is coming to you,

humble, and mounted on a donkey,

on a colt,[a] the foal of a beast of burden.’”

6 The disciples went and did as Jesus had directed them. 7 They brought the donkey and the colt and put on them their cloaks, and he sat on them. 8 Most of the crowd spread their cloaks on the road, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. 9 And the crowds that went before him and that followed him were shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!”



Sunday, November 23, 2014

"We Are The Sheep"


Matthew 25:31-46English Standard Version (ESV)
The Final Judgment

31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. 32 Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left. 34 Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36 I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’37 Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? 38 And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? 39 And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ 40 And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers,[a] you did it to me.’

41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’ 44 Then they also will answer, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to you?’ 45 Then he will answer them, saying, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ 46 And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”