Preaching to the Choir

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

Monday, April 07, 2008

Easter 4A

Here are some beginning thoughts for this upcoming Sunday's sermon, although I am not going to be preaching.

This is considered Shepherd Sunday because the lectionary passages focus on the Shepherd.
Acts 2:42-47 This passage is what the early church looked like as it was beginning and growing and understanding what it was to be a community of faith? What if the churches looked this way now?
  • Teaching/learning -- they devoted themselves to the apostle's teaching (Acts 2:42).
  • Fellowship -- they found it important to spend a great deal of time with each other (Acts 2:42, 46).
  • Prayers -- prayer was extremely important to this group (Acts 2:42).
  • Breaking bread -- commentaries are unclear about whether the writer meant Eucharist or table fellowship or a combination of both (Acts 2:42, 46).
  • Shared possessions and the equitable distribution of goods -- initially, this group pooled its resources and provided for the needs of all who were a part of the new community (Acts 2:45-47).
Psalm 23 (UMH 754 or 137) This is the Shepherd's Psalm, most often used at Funerals, but really has to do with living our lives on a daily basis before we die. I heard a modern day version of the Shepherd is the lifeguard.
1 Peter 2:19-25 This focuses on bearing pain like Jesus did, but then has the passage at the end;
For you were going astray like sheep, but now you have returned to the shepherd and guardian of your souls.
John 10:1-10 Jesus is both the gate (verse 9) and the Good Shepherd (John 10:11). He provides the way for sheep to enter the sheepfold and he shepherds the sheep. And don't forget; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly (John 10:10). Just what does that mean for our lives today? Is this different than some of the abundant theology we see out there with the focus on financial wealth?

Since I am focusing on what it means to be Easter People. I would focus on What happens when we encounter the Shepherd in our lives?

Image is of Shepherds displaced from Haruba, near Ma'on


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