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The 17th Sunday after Pentecost
September 16, 2018

James 2:1-5, 8-10, 14-18
Let Your Faith Show!

1) Let it show in acts of mercy.
a. We're saved by faith in Jesus alone.
b. Faith will show itself in acts of mercy.
* How many practical ways can you let your faith show by acts of mercy in the home, church and society?!

2) Let is show that it's alive.
a. Without works – faith is dead!
b. Claiming to have faith without works is useless.
* As we examine our lives we repent of our failures to help the truly needy or bring the gospel to all, regardless of social standing. It's God's business – it's our business!

The 16th Sunday after Pentecost
September 9, 2018

James 1:17-27
Listen to God's Word to Discover

1) What kind of person you were by nature.
a. We shall be blessed when we listen to discover (v. 25).
b. God's Word exposes what we were by nature.
* Jesus exposes the sin in our heart – Matthew 15:19

2) What kind of God you have.
a. God's Word reveals our Savior. Law=Torah=teaching (both Law and Gospel).
b. He gives us only what is good (v. 17).
c. He saves us (v. 21).

3) What kind of freedom Christ gives you.
a. Freedom from sin for service (2 Corinthians 5:14-15).
b. We serve God by “doing” His Word (Luke 11:28).
c. We express our new life in Christ – being slow to speak; looking after; those in distress.
* Don't let your life be an “unfinished” sermon. Hear, believe, do God's Word.

The Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost
September 2, 2018

Ephesians 6:10-20
Onward, Christian Soldiers!

1) Know your enemy.
a. Our struggle is not against flesh and blood.
b. We struggle against spiritual forces of evil.
* Satan is not just a medieval myth. He's a real spiritual ruler of evil, and we were born under his influence. Only Christ's power – the gospel – can give us the victory!

2) Put on the full armor of God.
a. Christ has already won the war.
b. Use His armor for battle.
* The question is not whether we will fight the battle or not. We're in it. Stand firm in God's power!

14th Sunday after Pentecost
August 26, 2018

Ephesians 5:21-31
Submit to One Another Out of Reverence for Christ

1) Christ Loved the Church – Revere Him!
a. Revere = “Fear” in terror for our sins and in awe for Christ's person and work to save us.
b. We lose that awe if we're proud or self-righteous.
c. We stand in awe when we believe in our Saviour.
* The Holy Spirit by giving us faith in Jesus changes us from proud and self-righteous to gracious and loving, willing to submit.

2) Out of Reverence for Christ, submit to one another.
a. Submit = yield your rights for the good of others.
b. Husbands and wives submit by fulfilling their roles.
i. The wife submits to her husband as her head as the Church submits to Christ as its head.
ii. The husband loves and sacrifices for his wife as Christ loved the Church.
* In a fallen world with fallen hearts we need Gods' grace to live for Him by submitting to one another. When we do, we are a blessing not only for our family, but for the entire Christian community!

The 13th Sunday after Pentecost
August 19, 2018

Ephesians 5:15-20
Live a Spirit-Fueled Life!

1) Don't fill your spiritual tank with the world's fuel.
a. The days are evil!
b. So make the most of every opportunity to know God's will.
* God's “will” is that we believe in Jesus for eternal life and use our earthly life to live in His love. How will you know God's will? Continue in His Word (Psalm (90:12).

2) Be fueled by the Spirit through the Gospel.
a. Don't let intoxicants cut your spirit from God.
b. Be fueled by the Spirit in Word and Sacrament (worship!).
* Heed the warning from Hebrews 3:12-13. We can't live a Christian life alone. When we're fueled by the Spirit, we'll give thanks to God for everything!

12th Sunday after Pentecost
August 12, 2018

Ephesians 4:30-5:2
Imitate Your Heavenly Father

1)Forgive as He has forgiven you.
a. Do not grieve the Holy Spirit with bitterness..
b. Forgive as God has forgiven you.
* Are you tempted to get even? Remember the love and forgiveness God has shown you (Romans 5:8)!

2)Live a life of love, just as Christ loved us.
a. Christ loved us and gave Himself up for us.
b. Our life of love is as a “fragrant offering” That pleases God.
* We can't imitate someone we don't know very well; therefore, spend time with Jesus in Word, Sacrament, and prayer. Then people will say, “Look at them! They're like their father!”

11th Sunday after Pentecost
August 5, 2018

Ephesians 4:17-24
Live Your Baptismal Life!

1) Put off your Old Self, which is being corrupted.
a. The deceitful desires of the old self
b. The result of living only for the old self
* We repeatedly put off the old self by daily repenting.

2) Put on the New Self, created to be like God.
a. We have a new self by God's gracious creation.
b. Put on the new self as the Holy Spirit renews you.
* We need daily meditation on God's Word and weekly worship for the Holy Spirit to constantly renew us. As God's new creation, serve the Lord with pure love, devotion, and praise.

The 10th Sunday after Pentecost
July 29, 2018

Ephesians 4:1-7, 11-16
“The True Unity of the Church is ...”

1) Produced by the Holy Spirit.
a. Be humble and gentle to live in unity.
b. The Holy Spirit produces faith and love for unity.
c. We are united to the one God who is Father of us all.
* Keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.

2) Promoted by Spiritual Gifts to Build Christ's Church.
a. Christ gives gifts to His Church to keep it united (ministry!)
b. We reach unity as we grow in faith and knowledge of Christ.
* How will you use your gifts to promote growth and unity in Christ's Church?

9th Sunday after Pentecost
July 22, 2018

Mark 6:19-29

The 8th Sunday after Pentecost
July 15, 2018

Ephesians 1:3-14
Praise God for His Glorious Grace!

1) He chose us in eternity to be His own!
a. He chose us “in Christ.”
b. He chose us in grace alone.
* Our faith stands not on our feeble, uncertain choice, but on Christ's choice. Therefore our final salvation is sure!

2) He redeemed us by His Son's blood!
a. We were slaves of sin.
b. Christ paid the ransom price to free us – His life-blood.
* When sin, the devil, and the world discourage us, we cling by faith to the promises of peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.

3) He sealed us with His Spirit.
a. A seal proves ownership. The Holy Spirit seals us.
b. We're assured of the Spirit's seal in Scriptures.
* Our salvation is not a gamble. It doesn't depend on beating the odds. It's God's gift of grace. Life to show your love for Him!

Seventh Sunday after Pentecost
July 8, 2018

2 Corinthians 12:7-10
What Can You Learn from Your Thorn in the Flesh?

1) Admit you are weak.
a. God gave Paul a "thorn in the flesh."
b. Why? Paul had to admit, "I am weak."
*We are by nature proud and inclined to boast. God allows painful "thorns" to lead us to admit, "I am weak." The Theology of the Cross reminds us God reveals Himself to save us and to guide us not in glorious ways, but in suffering.

2) Trust that God's power is made perfect in your weakness.
a. God's grace is sufficient for us - coming through the gospel.
b. We can therefore boast - about our weaknesses!
*God is here! We are loved! It is enough! Real "Prosperity Gospel" is prosperity of the heart and should through faith in Jesus.

Sixth Sunday after Pentecost
July 1, 2018

Romans 13:1-7
God Governs All Things for Our Good!

1) There is no authority except that which God has established.
a. Paul was writing to the church at Rome.
b. The Holy Spirit inspired him to affirm government authority.
*God establishes government to provide order and to protect us.

2) God established government as His servant to do us good.
a. Our government and nation need our prayers.
b. Godless government reflects the godlessness of society.
*Jesus bore injustice and evil when He suffered and died - to work God's eternal good for us. Let His love compel you as you spread His saving Gospel and live to show the hope He gives!

Fifth Sunday after Pentecost
June 24, 2018

2 Corinthians 5:14-21
God has a message to send through His Ambassador - You!

1) He has reconciled the world to Himself in Christ.
a. Some were rejecting God's message through His ambassador Paul.
b. Paul faithfully brought God's message of reconciliation (peace).
*Never lose your joy that Jesus has made peace between God & you!

2) He wants all people to be reconciled to Him by faith in Jesus.
a. Without faith in Jesus people are still at war with God.
b. Through the good news of Jesus God works faith and peace.
*Participating in a Bible-confessing congregation is urgent!

3) He sends His message through His ambassador - you!
a. We are a new creation in Christ.
b. Christ's love compels us to represent Him and His kingdom.
*Aren't you thrilled to know God uses you as His ambassador?

Fourth Sunday after Pentecost
June 17, 2018

2 Corinthians 5:1-10
Forever with the Lord!

1) We look forward to this goal at life's end.
a. What's the best you would hope for without Jesus?
b. Through Jesus we have an eternal dwelling!
*We wear Jesus' holiness by faith & await perfection in heaven.

2) We are assured of reaching this goal.
a. God has done what's necessary for us.
b. The Holy Spirit is a deposit guaranteeing heaven.
*Despite all appearances, we have a clear title to heaven!

3) We gladly serve Jesus in view of this goal.
a. Our goal in life now is to please the Lord.
b. Christ will commend what we do in faith in Him.
*Christ did everything to give us eternal life. "That's All Folks!"

Third Sunday after Pentecost
June 10, 2018

2 Corinthians 4:13-18
We Believe, and Therefore, We Speak

1) We believe and speak the Gospel, which brings us life.
a. Despite threats to his life, Paul believed and spoke.
b. He trusted God would raise him to eternal life.
*Do you feel like giving up? Look at the blessings you have through Jesus. Believe, and speak!

2) We believe and speak the Gospel, which bring us to glory.
a. Eternal glory awaits us.
b. Therefore fix your eyes on what is unseen & eternal.
*If a child can get through long school hours by looking forward to summer, can we not also get through this life by looking forward to the freedom that awaits us in heaven?

Second Sunday after Pentecost
June 3, 2018

2 Corinthians 4:5-12
We Make No Apologies for Our Preaching

1) No apologies for the message - Christ Jesus as Lord.
a. We do not preach ourselves.
b. We preach Christ as LORD (Colossians 1:14, 19-23).
c. God shined the light of His knowledge and glory on us.
*When you wonder, "Where are you, Lord?" turn to His Word. He shines to guide us in our faith and life until we enter heaven's light.

2) No apologies for the messenger - a servant for Jesus' sake.
a. The human messenger is a fragile jar of clay
b. The human messenger is often troubled and distressed.
c. But Christ's life is revealed in the messenger's ministry.
*Throughout the ages the world will criticize faithful ministers of Jesus. Faithful disciples will undergo suffering. But we will not apologize for the message or the messenger since we have the treasure of life eternal through faith in Jesus!

Festival of Holy Trinity
May 27, 2018

Romans 8:12-17
I Believe in One God in Three Persons – Blessed Trinity!

1) I believe in God the Holy Spirit who made me God’s child.
a. We were by nature objects of God’s wrath.
b. The Holy Spirit made us God’s children by faith.
*How can you be sure? The Spirit testifies with our spirit through the Scriptures He inspired to give us confident faith.

2) I believe in God the Father, who opens His heart to me.
a. Many fear God so they avoid Him.
b. We call Him our dear Father in heaven through Jesus.
*In nature we stand in awe of God’s power. In worship we stand in awe of His love!

3) I believe in God the Son, who shares His inheritance.
a. We share in Jesus’ sufferings.
b. We will share in His glory.
*No identity crisis for us! We’re God’s children and heirs of eternal life in heaven through God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit!

Pentecost Festival
May 20, 2018

Acts 2:1-21
“Happy Birthday to Christ’s Church!”

1) On Pentecost the Holy Spirit gave birth to the Church.
2) Throughout history the Holy Spirit has blessed the Church.
3) The Holy Spirit blesses us as members of the Church.

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