"The Fruit of the Spirit: Gentleness"
Description:The scripture reading is Matthew 11:28-30. 28_‘Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. 29_Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30_For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’
Description:The scripture reading is Matthew 25:14-23. 14_“For it will be as when someone going on a journey called in servants and entrusted to them some money, 15_giving to one five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to their ability, and then went away. 16_The one who had received the five talents went at once and traded with the money, and made five talents more. 17_So also, the one who had the two talents made two talents more. 18_But the one who had received the one talent went and dug in the ground and hid the money. 19_Now, after a long time the sovereign of those servants returned and settled accounts with them. 20_And the servant who had received the five talents came forward, bringing five talents more, saying, “Sovereign, you delivered to me five talents; here I have made five talents more.” 21_The Sovereign said, “Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much; enter into the joy of your sovereign.” 22_And the one also who had the two talents came forward, saying, “Sovereign, you delivered to me two talents; here I have made two talents more.” 23_The reply came, “Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much; enter into the joy of your sovereign.”
Dr. Heath Adam Ackley
Description:The scripture readings are: Genesis 1:26-28 & 2:21-22 and Galatians 3:28 & 5:1. 26_Then God said, ‘Let us make humankind in our image, according to our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the wild animals of the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.’ 27_So God created humankind in God’s image, in the image of God they were created; male and female God created them. 28_God blessed them, and God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the air and over every living thing that moves upon the earth.’… 21_So the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and he slept; then the Lord God took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh. 22_And the rib that the Lord God had taken from the man was made into a woman and brought to the man… 1_For freedom Christ has set us free. Stand firm, therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.
Description:The scripture reading is Psalm 95:1-7. 1_O come, let us sing to our God; let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation! 2_Let us come into God's presence with thanksgiving let us make a joyful noise to God with songs of praise! 3_For God is great, and great above all gods. 4_In God's hand are the depths of the earth; the heights of the mountains also. 5_The sea is God's, for God made it, and the dry land, which God's hands have formed. 6_O come, let us worship and bow down, let us kneel before God, our Maker! 7_For God is our God, and we are the people of God's pasture, and the sheep of God's hand.
Description:The scripture reading is Colossians 3:12-17. 12_As God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience. 13_Bear with one another and, if anyone has a complaint against another, forgive each other; just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. 14_Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. 15_And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in the one body. And be thankful. 16_Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly; teach and admonish one another in all wisdom; and with gratitude in your hearts sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs to God. 17_And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God through Christ.
Description:The scripture reading is Ephesians 4:29-5:2. 29_Let no evil talk come out of your mouths, but only what is useful for building up, as there is need, so that your words may give grace to those who hear. 30_And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with which you were marked with a seal for the day of redemption. 31_Put away from you all bitterness and wrath and anger and wrangling and slander, together with all malice, 32_and be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you. 5:1_Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children, 2_and live in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
Description:The scripture reading is Isaiah 40:27-31. 27_Why do you say, O Jacob, and speak, O Israel, ‘My way is hidden from the Lord, and my right is disregarded by my God’? 28_Have you not known? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. God does not faint or grow weary; God’s understanding is unsearchable. 29_God gives power to the faint, and strengthens the powerless. 30_Even youths will faint and be weary, and the young will fall exhausted; 31_but those who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.
Description:The scripture readings are John 14:27 and Philippians 4:6-7. 27_Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid…6_Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7_And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Description:The scripture reading is John 16:20-22. 20_Very truly, I tell you, you will weep and mourn, but the world will rejoice; you will have pain, but your pain will turn into joy. 21_When a woman is in labor, she has pain, because her hour has come. But when her child is born, she no longer remembers the anguish because of the joy of having brought a human being into the world. 22_So you have pain now; but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you.
Description:The scripture reading is 1 Corinthians 13:1-7, 13. 1_If I speak in the tongues of mortals and of angels, but do not have love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2_And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3_If I give away all my possessions, and if I hand over my body so that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing. 4_Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant 5_or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 6_it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. 7_It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things… 13_And now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; and the greatest of these is love.
Rev. Michelle Kirby
Description:The Scripture reading is Matthew 10:12-14, 16-17, 40-42. 12_As you enter the house, greet it. 13_If the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it; but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. 14_If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet as you leave that house or town… 16_‘See, I am sending you out like sheep into the midst of wolves; so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves. 17_Beware of them, for they will hand you over to councils and flog you in their synagogues… 40_‘Whoever welcomes you welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. 41_Whoever welcomes a prophet in the name of a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward; and whoever welcomes a righteous person in the name of a righteous person will receive the reward of the righteous; 42_and whoever gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones in the name of a disciple—truly I tell you, none of these will lose their reward.’
Description:The scripture reading is James 2:14-17 & 26. 14_What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if you say you have faith but do not have works? Can faith save you? 15_If a brother or sister is naked and lacks daily food, 16_and one of you says to them, ‘Go in peace; keep warm and eat your fill’, and yet you do not supply their bodily needs, what is the good of that? 17_So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead… 26_For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is also dead.
Description:The scripture reading is Mark 1:35-42. 35_In the morning, while it was still very dark, Jesus got up and went out to a deserted place, and there he prayed. 36_And Simon and his companions hunted for him. 37_When they found him, they said to him, ‘Everyone is searching for you.’ 38_He answered, ‘Let us go on to the neighboring towns, so that I may proclaim the message there also; for that is what I came out to do.’ 39_And he went throughout Galilee, proclaiming the message in their synagogues and casting out demons. 40_A leper came to him begging him, and kneeling he said to him, ‘If you choose, you can make me clean.’ 41_Moved with pity, Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him, and said to him, ‘I do choose. Be made clean!’ 42_Immediately the leprosy left him, and he was made clean.
Description:The scripture reading is Mark 1:21-22 & 29-31. 21_The disciples went to Capernaum; and when the sabbath came, Jesus entered the synagogue and taught. 22_They were astounded at his teaching, for he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes… 29_As soon as they left the synagogue, they entered the house of Simon and Andrew, with James and John. 30_Now Simon’s mother-in-law was in bed with a fever, and they told him about her at once. 31_He came and took her by the hand and lifted her up. Then the fever left her, and she began to serve them.
Rev. Elder Tony Freeman
Description:The scripture reading is Acts 2:14-21. 14_But Peter, standing with the eleven disciples, raised his voice and addressed them: ‘Men of Judea and all who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and listen to what I say. 15_Indeed, these are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only nine o’clock in the morning. 16_No, this is what was spoken through the prophet Joel: 17_“In the last days it will be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams. 18_Even upon my slaves, both men and women, in those days I will pour out my Spirit; and they shall prophesy. 19_And I will show portents in the heaven above and signs on the earth below, blood, and fire, and smoky mist. 20_The sun shall be turned to darkness and the moon to blood, before the coming of the Lord’s great and glorious day. 21_Then everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Description:The scripture readings are Jeremiah 29:11 and Isaiah 55:8-9. 11_For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope.8_For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways, says the Lord. 9_For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.
Description:The scripture reading is Philippians 4:4-8. 4_Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. 5_Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. 6_Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7_And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. 8_Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.
Description:The scripture reading is John 10:22-30. 22_At that time the festival of the Dedication took place in Jerusalem. It was winter, 23_and Jesus was walking in the temple, in the portico of Solomon. 24_So the Jews gathered around him and said to him, ‘How long will you keep us in suspense? If you are the Messiah, tell us plainly.’ 25_Jesus answered, ‘I have told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Creator’s name testify to me; 26_but you do not believe, because you do not belong to my sheep. 27_My sheep hear my voice. I know them, and they follow me. 28_I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one will snatch them out of my hand. 29_What my Creator has given me is greater than all else, and no one can snatch it out of the Creator’s hand. 30_The Creator and I are one.’
Description:The scripture reading is Matthew 8:1-3. 1_When Jesus had come down from the mountain, great crowds followed him; 2_and there was a leper who came to him and knelt before him, saying, “Lord, if you choose, you can make me clean.” 3_He stretched out his hand and touched him, saying, “I do choose. Be made clean!” Immediately his leprosy was cleansed.
Description:The scripture reading is Acts 26: 1, 9-18, 24-28. 1_Agrippa said to Paul, “You have permission to speak for yourself.” Then Paul stretched out his hand and began to defend himself… 9_“Indeed, I myself was convinced that I ought to do many things against the name of Jesus of Nazareth. 10_And that is what I did in Jerusalem; with authority received from the chief priests, I not only locked up many of the saints in prison, but I also cast my vote against them when they were being condemned to death. 11_By punishing them often in all the synagogues I tried to force them to blaspheme; and since I was so furiously enraged at them, I pursued them even to foreign cities. 12_"With this in mind, I was travelling to Damascus with the authority and commission of the chief priests, 13_when at midday along the road, your Excellency, I saw a light from heaven, brighter than the sun, shining around me and my companions. 14_When we had all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me in the Hebrew language, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? It hurts you to kick against the prods.’ 15_I asked, ‘Who are you, Lord?’ The Lord answered, ‘I am Jesus whom you are persecuting. 16_But get up and stand on your feet; for I have appeared to you for this purpose, to appoint you to serve and testify to the things in which you have seen me and to those in which I will appear to you. 17_I will rescue you from your people and from the Gentiles—to whom I am sending you 18_to open their eyes so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.’”…24_While he was making this defense, Festus exclaimed, “You are out of your mind, Paul! Too much learning is driving you insane!” 25_But Paul said, “I am not out of my mind, most excellent Festus, but I am speaking the sober truth. 26_Indeed the king knows about these things, and to him I speak freely; for I am certain that none of these things has escaped his notice, for this was not done in a corner. 27_King Agrippa, do you believe the prophets? I know that you believe.” 28_Agrippa said to Paul, “Are you so quickly persuading me to become a Christian?”
Description:The scripture reading is Luke 24:13-35. 13_Now on that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem, 14_and talking with each other about all these things that had happened. 15_While they were talking and discussing, Jesus himself came near and went with them, 16_but their eyes were kept from recognizing him. 17_And he said to them, “What are you discussing with each other while you walk along?” They stood still, looking sad. 18_Then one of them, whose name was Cleopas, answered him, “Are you the only stranger in Jerusalem who does not know the things that have taken place there in these days?” 19_He asked them, “What things?” They replied, “The things about Jesus of Nazareth, who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people, 20_and how our chief priests and leaders handed him over to be condemned to death and crucified him. 21_But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since these things took place. 22_Moreover, some women of our group astounded us. They were at the tomb early this morning, 23_and when they did not find his body there, they came back and told us that they had indeed seen a vision of angels who said that he was alive. 24_Some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said; but they did not see him.” 25_Then Jesus said to them, “Oh, how foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have declared! 26_Was it not necessary that the Messiah should suffer these things and then enter into his glory?” 27_Then beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them the things about himself in all the scriptures. 28_As they came near the village to which they were going, he walked ahead as if he were going on. 29_But they urged him strongly, saying, “Stay with us, because it is almost evening and the day is now nearly over.” So he went in to stay with them. 30_When he was at the table with them, he took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. 31_Then their eyes were opened, and they recognized him; and he vanished from their sight. 32_They said to each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he was talking to us on the road, while he was opening the scriptures to us?”
Description:The scripture reading is Matthew 28:1-10. 1_After the Sabbath, as the first day of the week was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. 2_And suddenly there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord, descending from heaven, came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. 3_His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. 4_For fear of him the guards shook and became like dead men. 5_But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid; I know that you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. 6_He is not here; for he has been raised, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. 7_Then go quickly and tell his disciples, ‘He has been raised from the dead, and indeed he is going ahead of you to Galilee; there you will see him.’ This is my message for you.” 8_So they left the tomb quickly with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples. 9_Suddenly Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!’ And they came to him, took hold of his feet, and worshipped him. 10_Then Jesus said to them, ‘Do not be afraid; go and tell the rest to go to Galilee; there they will see me.”
Description:The scripture reading is Matthew 21:1-11. 1_When they had come near Jerusalem and had reached Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, 2_saying to them, “Go into the village ahead 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, just say this, ‘The Lord needs them.’ And he will send them immediately. 4_This took place to fulfill what had been spoken through the prophet, saying, 5_Tell the daughter of Zion, Look, your king is coming to you, humble, and mounted on a donkey and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.” 6_The disciples went and did as Jesus had directed them; 7_they brought the donkey and the colt, and put their cloaks on them, and he sat on them. 8_A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. 9_The crowds that went ahead of Jesus and that followed were shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest heaven!” 10_When he entered Jerusalem, the whole city was in turmoil, asking, “Who is this?” 11_The crowds were saying, “This is the prophet Jesus from Nazareth in Galilee.”
Description:The scripture reading is John 4:6-26. 6_Jacob’s well was there, and Jesus, tired out by his journey, was sitting by the well. It was about noon. 7_A Samaritan woman came to draw water, and Jesus said to her, ‘Give me a drink’. 8_(His disciples had gone to the city to buy food.) 9_The Samaritan woman said to him, ‘How is it that you, a Jew, ask a drink of me, a woman of Samaria?’ (Jews do not share things in common with Samaritans.) 10_Jesus answered her, ‘If you knew the gift of God, and who it is that is saying to you, “Give me a drink”, you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water.’ 11_The woman said to him, ‘Sir, you have no bucket, and the well is deep. Where do you get that living water? 12_Are you greater than our ancestor Jacob, who gave us the well, and with his sons and his flocks drank from it?’ 13_Jesus said to her, ‘Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, 14_but those who drink of the water that I will give them will never be thirsty. The water that I will give will become in them a spring of water gushing up to eternal life.’ 15_The woman said to him, ‘Sir, give me this water, so that I may never be thirsty or have to keep coming here to draw water.’ 16_Jesus said to her, ‘Go, call your husband, and come back.’ 17_The woman answered him, ‘I have no husband.’ Jesus said to her, ‘You are right in saying, “I have no husband”; 18_for you have had five husbands, and the one you have now is not your husband. What you have said is true!’ 19_The woman said to him, ‘Sir, I see that you are a prophet. 20_Our ancestors worshipped on this mountain, but you say that theplace where people must worship is in Jerusalem.’ 21_Jesus said to her, ‘Woman, believe me, the hour is coming when you will worship God neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. 22_You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews. 23_But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshippers will worship God in spirit and truth, for God seeks such as these to worship. 24_God is spirit, and those who worship God must worship in spirit and truth.’ 25_The woman said to him, ‘I know that Messiah is coming’ (who is called Christ). ‘When he comes, he will proclaim all things to us.’26_Jesus said to her, ‘I am he, the one who is speaking to you.’
Description:The scripture reading is John 3:1-17. 1_Now there was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a leader of the Jews. 2_He came to Jesus by night and said to him, ‘Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God; for no one can do these signs that you do apart from the presence of God.’ 3_Jesus answered him, ‘Very truly, I tell you, no one can see the realm of God without being born from above.’ 4_Nicodemus said to him, ‘How can anyone be born after having grown old? Can one enter a second time into the mother’s womb and be born?’ 5_Jesus answered, ‘Very truly, I tell you, no one can enter the realm of God without being born of water and Spirit. 6_What is born of the flesh is flesh, and what is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7_Do not be astonished that I said to you, “You must be born from above.” 8_The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.’ 9_Nicodemus said to him, ‘How can these things be?’ 10_Jesus answered him, ‘Are you a teacher of Israel, and yet you do not understand these things? 11_‘Very truly, I tell you, we speak of what we know and testify to what we have seen; yet you do not receive our testimony. 12_If I have told you about earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you about heavenly things? 13_No one has ascended into heaven except the one who descended from heaven, the Son of Man. 14_And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15_that whoever believes in him may have eternal life. 16_‘For God so loved the world that God gave God’s only Son, so that everyone who believes in Christ may not perish but may have eternal life. 17_‘Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.
Description:The scripture reading is Matthew 4:1-11. 1_Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2_He fasted for forty days and forty nights, and afterwards he was famished. 3_The tempter came and said to him, ‘If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.’ 4_But he answered, ‘It is written, “One does not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.”’ 5_Then the devil took him to the holy city and placed him on the pinnacle of the temple, 6_saying to him, ‘If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down; for it is written, “He will command his angels concerning you”, and “On their hands they will bear you up, so that you will not dash your foot against a stone.”’ 7_Jesus said to him, ‘Again it is written, “Do not put the Lord your God to the test.”’ 8_Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor; 9_and he said to him, ‘All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.’ 10_Jesus said to him, ‘Away with you, Satan! For it is written, “Worship the Lord your God, and serve only him.”’ 11_Then the devil left him, and suddenly angels came and waited on him.
Description:The scripture reading is Matthew 8:1-3. 1_When Jesus had come down from the mountain, great crowds followed him; 2_and there was a leper who came to him and knelt before him, saying, ‘Lord, if you choose, you can make me clean.’ 3_He stretched out his hand and touched him, saying, ‘I do choose. Be made clean!’ Immediately his leprosy was cleansed.
Rev. Caedmon Grace
Description:The scripture reading is Phillipians 2:1-8. 1-4_If you’ve gotten anything at all out of following Christ, if his love has made any difference in your life, if being in a community of the Spirit means anything to you, if you have a heart, if you care— then do me a favor: Agree with each other, love each other, be deep-spirited friends. Don’t push your way to the front; don’t sweet-talk your way to the top. Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead. Don’t be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand. 5-8_Think of yourselves the way Christ Jesus thought of himself. He had equal status with God but didn’t think so much of himself that he had to cling to the advantages of that status no matter what. Not at all. When the time came, he set aside the privileges of deity and took on the status of a slave, became human! Having become human, he stayed human. It was an incredibly humbling process. He didn’t claim special privileges. Instead, he lived a selfless, obedient life and then died a selfless, obedient death.
Description:The scripture reading is Matthew 26:6-13. 6_Now while Jesus was at Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, 7_a woman came to him with an alabaster jar of very costly ointment, and she poured it on his head as he sat at the table. 8_But when the disciples saw it, they were angry and said, ‘Why this waste? 9_For this ointment could have been sold for a large sum, and the money given to the poor.’ 10_But Jesus, aware of this, said to them, ‘Why do you trouble the woman? She has performed a good service for me. 11_For you always have the poor with you, but you will not always have me. 12_By pouring this ointment on my body she has prepared me for burial. 13_Truly I tell you, wherever this good news is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will be told in remembrance of her.’
Description:The scripture reading is Hebrews 10:23-25. 23_Let us hold fast to the confession of our hope without wavering, for the one who has promised is faithful. 24_And let us consider how to provoke one another to love and good deeds, 25_not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
Description:Due to technical problems we were unable to get a recording of the sermon. Please enjoy the choir. "The Five Languages of Love: Words of Affirmation" The scripture reading is Luke 6:27-31. 27_Jesus said, “But I say to you that listen, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28_bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you.29_If anyone strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also; and from anyone who takes away your coat do not withhold even your shirt. 30_Give to everyone who begs from you; and if anyone takes away your goods, do not ask for them again. 31_Do to others as you would have them do to you.”
Description:The scripture reading is Matthew 5:13-16. 13_‘You are the salt of the earth; but if salt has lost its taste, how can its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything, but is thrown out and trampled under foot. 14_‘You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hidden.15_No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house. 16_In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your God in heaven.
Description:The scripture reading is Luke 11:1-13. 1_Jesus was praying in a certain place, and after he had finished, one of his disciples said to him, ‘Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples.’ 2_He said to them, ‘When you pray, say: God, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come. 3_Give us each day our daily bread. 4_And forgive us our sins, for we ourselves forgive everyone indebted to us. And do not bring us to the time of trial.’ 5_And he said to them, ‘Suppose one of you has a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say to him, “Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; 6_for a friend of mine has arrived, and I have nothing to set before him.” 7_And he answers from within, “Do not bother me; the door has already been locked, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot get up and give you anything.” 8_I tell you, even though he will not get up and give him anything because he is his friend, at least because of his persistence he will get up and give him whatever he needs. 9_‘So I say to you, Ask, and it will be given to you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you. 10_For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened. 11_Is there anyone among you who, if your child asks for a fish, will give a snake instead of a fish? 12_Or if the child asks for an egg, will give a scorpion? 13_If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Creator give the Holy Spirit to those who ask!’
Description:The scripture reading is Luke 10:38-42. 38_Now as they went on their way, he entered a certain village, where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. 39_She had a sister named Mary, who sat at Jesus’ feet and listened to what he was saying. 40_But Martha was distracted by her many tasks; so she came to him and asked, ‘Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her then to help me.’ 41_But Jesus answered her, ‘Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; 42_there is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken away from her.’
Description:The scripture reading is Psalm 8. 1_O LORD, our Sovereign, how majestic is your name in all the earth! You have set your glory above the heavens. 2_Out of the mouths of babes and infants you have founded a bulwark because of your foes, to silence the enemy and the avenger. 3_When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars that you have established; 4_what are human beings that you are mindful of them, mortals that you care for them? 5_Yet you have made them a little lower than God, and crowned them with glory and honor. 6_You have given them dominion over the works of your hands; you have put all things under their feet, 7_all sheep and oxen, and also the beasts of the field, 8_the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea, whatever passes along the paths of the seas. 9_O LORD, our Sovereign, how majestic is your name in all the earth!
Celebration Chior & Pastor Dan
Description:FIRST LESSON/The Message of the Angel. Luke 1:26-38. 26_In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth, 27_to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. 28_And he came to her and said, ‘Greetings, favoured one! The Lord is with you.’ 29_But she was much perplexed by his words and pondered what sort of greeting this might be. 30_The angel said to her, ‘Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favour with God. 31_And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus. 32_He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give to him the throne of his ancestor David. 33_He will reign over the house of Jacob for ever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.’ 34_Mary said to the angel, ‘How can this be, since I am a virgin?’ 35_The angel said to her, ‘The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be holy; he will be called Son of God. 36_And now, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son; and this is the sixth month for her who was said to be barren. 37_For nothing will be impossible with God.’ 38_Then Mary said, ‘Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.’ Then the angel departed from her.SECOND LESSON/GOOD NEWS FOR TWO WOMEN Luke 1:39-4539_In those days Mary set out and went with haste to a Judean town in the hill country, 40_where she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. 41_When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the child leapt in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit 42_and exclaimed with a loud cry, ‘Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb. 43_And why has this happened to me, that the mother of my Lord comes to me? 44_For as soon as I heard the sound of your greeting, the child in my womb leapt for joy. 45_And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfilment of what was spoken to her by the Lord.’THIRD LESSON/Mary’s Song of Praise Luke 1:46-55.46_And Mary said, ‘My soul magnifies the Lord, 47_and my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour, 48_for he has looked with favour on the lowliness of his servant. Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed; 49_for the Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is God’s name. 50_God’s mercy is for those who fear God from generation to generation. 51_God has shown strength with God’s arm; has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts. 52_God has brought down the powerful from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly; 53_has filled the hungry with good things, and sent the rich away empty. 54_God has helped God’s servant Israel, in remembrance of God’s mercy, 55_according to the promise made to our ancestors, to Abraham and to his descendants forever.’FOURTH LESSON/JOSEPH’S DREAM Matthew 1:18-25.18_Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. 19_Her husband Joseph, being a righteous man and unwilling to expose her to public disgrace, planned to dismiss her quietly. 20_But just when he had resolved to do this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, ‘Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife, for the child conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21_She will bear a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.’ 22_All this took place to fulfil what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet: 23_‘Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel’, which means, ‘God is with us.’ 24_When Joseph awoke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took her as his wife, 25_but had no marital relations with her until she had borne a son; and he named him Jesus.FIFTH LESSON/THE BIRTH OF JESUS Luke 2:1-7.1_In those days a decree went out from Emperor Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2_This was the first registration and was taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3_All went to their own towns to be registered. 4_Joseph also went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the city of David called Bethlehem, because he was descended from the house and family of David. 5_He went to be registered with Mary, to whom he was engaged and who was expecting a child. 6_While they were there, the time came for her to deliver her child. 7_And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in bands of cloth, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.SIXTH LESSON/THE SHEPHERDS AND ANGELS Luke 2:8-20.8_In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9_Then an angel of the Lord stood before 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; for see—I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: 11_to you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, who is the Messiah, the Lord. 12_This will be a sign for you: you will find a child wrapped in bands of cloth and lying in a manger.’ 13_And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God and saying, 14_‘Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace among those whom God favours!’ 15_When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, ‘Let us go now to Bethlehem and see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.’ 16_So they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the child lying in the manger. 17_When they saw this, they made known what had been told them about this child; 18_and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds told them. 19_But Mary treasured all these words and pondered them in her heart. 20_The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.SEVENTH LESSON John 1:1-14.1_In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2_He was in the beginning with God. 3_All things came into being through God, and without God not one thing came into being. What has come into being 4_in God was life, and the life was the light of all people. 5_The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.6_There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7_He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. 8_He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light. 9_The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. 10_Christ was in the world, and the world came into being through God; yet the world did not know Christ. 11_Christ came to what was Christ’s own, and Jesus’ own people did not accept him. 12_But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, 13_who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God.14_And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen God’s glory, the glory as of God’s only son, full of grace and truth.
Description:The scripture reading is Luke 2:7-14. 7_And Mary gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn. 8_In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9_Then an angel of God stood before them, and the glory of God shone around them, and they were terrified. 10_But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for see - I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: 11_to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord. 12_This will be a sign for you: you will find a child wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.” 13_And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God and saying, 14_“Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace, goodwill to all!”
Description:"God with Us - The Christmas Story in Song."Celebration Chior directed by Jordan Davis.
Description:The scripture reading is Matthew 11:2-11. 2_When John heard in prison what the Messiah was doing, he sent word by his disciples 3_and said to him, ‘Are you the one who is to come, or are we to wait for another?’ 4_Jesus answered them, ‘Go and tell John what you hear and see: 5_the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the poor have good news brought to them. 6_And blessed is anyone who takes no offence at me.’ 7_As they went away, Jesus began to speak to the crowds about John: ‘What did you go out into the wilderness to look at? A reed shaken by the wind? 8_What then did you go out to see? Someone dressed in soft robes? Look, those who wear soft robes are in royal palaces. 9_What then did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet. 10_This is the one about whom it is written, “See, I am sending my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way before you.” 11_Truly I tell you, among those born of women no one has arisen greater than John the Baptist; yet the least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
Description:The scripture reading is Matthew 3:1-12. 1_In those days John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness of Judea, proclaiming, 2_‘Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.’ 3_This is the one of whom the prophet Isaiah spoke when he said, ‘The voice of one crying out in the wilderness: “Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.”’ 4_Now John wore clothing of camel’s hair with a leather belt around his waist, and his food was locusts and wild honey. 5_Then the people of Jerusalem and all Judea were going out to him, and all the region along the Jordan, 6_and they were baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins. 7_But when he saw many Pharisees and Sadducees coming for baptism, he said to them, ‘You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 8_Bear fruit worthy of repentance. 9_Do not presume to say to yourselves, “We have Abraham as our ancestor”; for I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children to Abraham. 10_Even now the axe is lying at the root of the trees; every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 11_‘I baptize you with water for repentance, but one who is more powerful than I is coming after me; I am not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. 12_His winnowing-fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing-floor and will gather his wheat into the granary; but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.’
Description:The scripture reading is Matthew 24:36-44. 36_“But about that day and hour no one knows, neither the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but only God. 37_For as the days of Noah were, so will be the coming of the Son of Humanity. 38_For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day Noah entered the ark, 39_and they knew nothing until the flood came and swept them all away, so too will be the coming of the Son of Humanity. 40_Then two will be in the field; one will be taken and one will be left. 41_Two women will be grinding meal together; one will be taken and one will be left. 42_Keep awake therefore, for you do not know on what day your Savior is coming. 43_But understand this: if the owner of the house had known in what part of the night the thief was coming, they would have stayed awake and would not have let their house be broken into. 44_Therefore you also must be ready, for the Son of Humanity is coming at an unexpected hour.”
Rev. Caedmon Grace
Description:The scripture reading is Luke 9:28-36. 28_Now about eight days after these sayings Jesus took with him Peter and John and James, and went up on the mountain to pray. 29_And while he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became dazzling white. 30_Suddenly they saw two men, Moses and Elijah, talking to him. 31_They appeared in glory and were speaking of his departure, which he was about to accomplish at Jerusalem. 32_Now Peter and his companions were weighed down with sleep; but since they had stayed awake, they saw his glory and the two men who stood with him. 33_Just as they were leaving him, Peter said to Jesus, ‘Master, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah’—not knowing what he said. 34_While he was saying this, a cloud came and overshadowed them; and they were terrified as they entered the cloud. 35_Then from the cloud came a voice that said, ‘This is my Son, my Chosen; listen to him!’ 36_When the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. And they kept silent and in those days told no one any of the things they had seen.
Description:Our recording device is sadly, still off line. Thanks to Gregory Ragsdale for recording the sermon on his iPhone. The sound quality is not the best since it was recorded open air but the message is worth the listen.The scripture reading is Matthew 28:16-20. 16_Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. 17_When they saw him, they worshipped him; but some doubted. 18_And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19_Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the God and of the Christ and of the Holy Spirit, 20_and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
Description:The scripture reading is 1 Thessalonians 5:14-18. 14_And we urge you, beloved, to admonish the idlers, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with all of them. 15_See that none of you repays evil for evil, but always seek to do good to one another and to all. 16_Rejoice always, 17_pray without ceasing, 18_give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
Description:The scripture reading is Mark 4:26-34. 26_Jesus said, “The realm of God is as if someone would scatter seed on the ground, 27_and would sleep and rise night and day, and the seed would sprout and grow, they do not know how. 28_The earth produces of itself, first the stalk, then the head, then the full grain in the head. 29_But when the grain is ripe, at once they go in with a sickle, because the harvest has come.” 30_Jesus also said, “With what can we compare the realm of God, or what parable will we use for it? 31_It is like a mustard seed, which, when sown upon the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth; 32_yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes the greatest of all shrubs, and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade.” 33_With many such parables he spoke the word to them, as they were able to hear it; 34_he did not speak to them except in parables, but he explained everything in private to his disciples.
Description:The scripture reading is Luke 4:14-21. 14_Then Jesus, filled with the power of the Spirit, returned to Galilee, and a report about him spread through all the surrounding country. 15_He began to teach in their synagogues and was praised by everyone. 16_When he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day, as was his custom. He stood up to read, 17_and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written: 18_“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because God has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. God has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, 19_to proclaim the year of God’s favor.” 20_And Jesus rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. The eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. 21_Then he began to say to them, “Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.”
Description:The scripture reading is Romans 12:9-18. 9_Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; 10_love one another with mutual affection; outdo one another in showing honor. 11_Do not lag in zeal, be ardent in spirit, serve the Lord. 12_Rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering, persevere in prayer. 13_Contribute to the needs of the saints; extend hospitality to strangers. 14_Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. 15_Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. 16_Live in harmony with one another; do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly; do not claim to be wiser than you are. 17_Do not repay anyone evil for evil, but take thought for what is noble in the sight of all. 18_If it is possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.
Description:“Practical Christianity & The Four Agreements” First Agreement: "Be Impeccable with Your Word" The scripture reading is Psalm 19: 1-4 & 14. 1_The heavens are telling the glory of God; and the firmament proclaims God’s handiwork. 2_Day to day pours forth speech, and night to night declares knowledge. 3_There is no speech, nor are there words; their voice is not heard; 4_yet their voice goes out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In the heavens God has set a tent for the sun…14_Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable to you, O God, my rock and my redeemer.
Rev. Caedmon Grace
Description:he scripture reading is 1 Corinthians 13:1-7 & 13. 1_If I speak with human eloquence and angelic ecstasy but don’t love, I’m nothing but the creaking of a rusty gate. 2_If I speak God’s Word with power, revealing all God’s mysteries and making everything plain as day, and if I have faith that says to a mountain, “Jump,” and it jumps, but I don’t love, I’m nothing. 3-7_If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don’t love, I’ve gotten nowhere. So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without love. Love never gives up. Love cares more for others than for self. Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have. Love doesn’t strut, Doesn’t have a swelled head, Doesn’t force itself on others, Isn’t always “me first,” Doesn’t fly off the handle, Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others, Doesn’t revel when others grovel, Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth, Puts up with anything, Trusts God always, Always looks for the best, Never looks back, But keeps going to the end. 13_But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love.
Description:The scripture reading is Colossians 4:2-6. 2_Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with thanksgiving. 3_At the same time pray for us as well that God will open to us a door for our message, that we may declare the mystery of Christ, for which I am in prison, 4_so that I may reveal it clearly, as I should. 5_Conduct yourselves wisely towards others, making the most of the time. 6_Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer everyone.