Everyone likes new things for Christmas. How about a new and better life?
In the third chapter of his letter to the Colossians, Paul urges them to put on a new life. But what’s it like and where do we we get it? In this sermon, Pastor Hinkle warns that such a life isn’t a do-it-yourself project and points us to the true source for a better life.
The Gospel Lesson for the Fourth Sunday in Advent recounts the Blessed Virgin Mary’s journey to visit Elizabeth, her relative and the mother of John the Baptist. The actions and words of the two women have much to teach everyone about faith, worship, and service to God. For those facing an unexpected pregnancy the same lesson provides the “hows and whys” of a godly way forward.
Sermon for the Fourth Sunday in Advent
Text: Luke 1:39-56
Christians are often troubled when they see God help others, but not them. Why some are miraculously healed and others are not is difficult to understand.
Luke records a time when John the Baptist sent two disciples to ask, “Are you the one who is to come or shall we expect another.” They had heard what Jesus was doing, but what he wasn’t doing concerned them and they were struggling. Jesus answered gently and with great respect for John, referring to what the prophet Isaiah had foretold and saying in effect, “trust me.”
Being ready for Christ’s return isn’t a matter of knowing when it will occur, it is rather a question of being faithful to the tasks we have been given. You don’t need chats and diagrams to understand what Jesus said in Mark 13, just simple faith in your savior.
In this sermon on Mark 9:38-50, Pastor Hinkle provides an overview of the lesson, but focuses on the most difficult part where Jesus says it would be better to cut off our hands and feet than to continue in sin and better to have a millstone fastened around our neck and be cast into the sea than to lead a child into sin. Pastor Hinkle explains that we need to take sin very seriously and avoid it, but that it is God who does the surgery when he buries us with Christ and raises us to new life through baptism.