Preaching to the Choir

These are some sermons, but mostly lectionary discussions. It also has prayers for some Sundays.

Friday, February 29, 2008

Sunday sermon prep for 3/2

The scripture passage for Sunday is Leviticus 19:1-18.

In this passage God starts off by telling Moses to the people in the assembly 'Be holy because I, the LORD your God, am holy'.
What does it mean to you to be holy as God is holy?
What would it look like to be holy as God is holy?
How does the Methodist Theology of sanctifying grace fit in here?
How does the Methodist Theology of perfection fit in here?
Can we be holy?
If so how, and If not why not?
Do you know someone who is holy or you might call holy?
What is it about that person that makes them holy?
How do they live their life?
Would they call themself holy?

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Scripture Passage for Sunday 3/2/08

This Sunday I am preaching on Leviticus 19:1-18.

Here is the passage in the NIV:
1 The LORD said to Moses, 2 "Speak to the entire assembly of Israel and say to them: 'Be holy because I, the LORD your God, am holy.
3 " 'Each of you must respect his mother and father, and you must observe my Sabbaths. I am the LORD your God.
4 " 'Do not turn to idols or make gods of cast metal for yourselves. I am the LORD your God.
5 " 'When you sacrifice a fellowship offering [a] to the LORD, sacrifice it in such a way that it will be accepted on your behalf. 6 It shall be eaten on the day you sacrifice it or on the next day; anything left over until the third day must be burned up. 7 If any of it is eaten on the third day, it is impure and will not be accepted. 8 Whoever eats it will be held responsible because he has desecrated what is holy to the LORD; that person must be cut off from his people.
9 " 'When you reap the harvest of your land, do not reap to the very edges of your field or gather the gleanings of your harvest. 10 Do not go over your vineyard a second time or pick up the grapes that have fallen. Leave them for the poor and the alien. I am the LORD your God.
11 " 'Do not steal.
" 'Do not lie.
" 'Do not deceive one another.
12 " 'Do not swear falsely by my name and so profane the name of your God. I am the LORD.
13 " 'Do not defraud your neighbor or rob him.
" 'Do not hold back the wages of a hired man overnight.
14 " 'Do not curse the deaf or put a stumbling block in front of the blind, but fear your God. I am the LORD.
15 " 'Do not pervert justice; do not show partiality to the poor or favoritism to the great, but judge your neighbor fairly.
16 " 'Do not go about spreading slander among your people.
" 'Do not do anything that endangers your neighbor's life. I am the LORD.
17 " 'Do not hate your brother in your heart. Rebuke your neighbor frankly so you will not share in his guilt.
18 " 'Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against one of your people, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the LORD.

I am interested in hearing your thoughts about this passage.
If you were preaching this passage what would be your theme?
What would you emphasize?
What would be your main points?
What illustrations would you use?
What are their relevance for today?
Let me hear from you.

Getting input from those reading our sermons

I got asked by Amy Forbus,who is putting together an article for the Methodist Reporter about people who post their sermons, some questions about my postings.
I haven't posted a sermon in a long time. I just don't take the time to do it.

Here are her questions; The topic, at least as it stands now, is pastors who blog, and how that makes a difference in their preaching or other elements of worship.... especially if any parishoners have taken the opportunity to enter into discussion about a given sermon topic through the blog. I know Adam Hamilton has been engaging in a preaching/blogging crossover with his Seeing Gray series and has gotten a pretty good comment thread going a time or two. But do you know anyone else who's doing it? Are you doing it?
For those of you who have posted your sermons online, what kind of response have you gotten? Do your parishoners take advantage of being able to re-read or re-listen to something they've already heard? Does it deepen the experience of worship at all? Or, if you haven't tried anything like this, do you know a pastor who has done so and would be willing to talk about it?

Here are my answers to her questions: As far as it goes, I have been sporadic about posting my sermons. I find I may go into the pulpit with a written manuscript and then that is not what I preach, instead it is a spring board for preaching. I wish I taped the sermons so as to post a pod cast, an audio of the sermon or even some kind of video.

I do like the idea of Adam's of engaging in a preaching/blogging crossover with his Seeing Gray series and has gotten a pretty good comment thread going a time or two. But do you know anyone else who's doing it? Are you doing it? I am not doing it now, but it might be worth doing, since I have the church reading through the Bible and I am preaching from a scripture that fits that week's reading. I don't know anyone else who does this. If you look at Mike Slaughter's sermons, his has a bible study written by laity that goes along with sermon.

I have gotten pretty positive comments on my sermons. I know that several revgalblogpals post their sermons.

I think I am going to start posting what I am going to preach on and open it up for comments. See what kind of response I get.

And so, since she asked and got me thinking about it, I think I am going to post the passage I am preaching on for Sunday and see what kind of comments, thoughts or ideas people share. I have a friend who leads a lectionary study group, and he says it has enhanced his preaching a lot.

So what are your thoughts?