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Getting Out the WORD - the sixth sunday after pentecost
Written by Pastor Bob   
Thursday, 28 July 2011 09:00

the PRAYER. . .

 

Beloved and sovereign God, through the death and resurrection of your Son you bring us into your kingdom of justice and mercy. By your Spirit, give us your wisdom, that we may treasure the life that comes from Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.

 

the READING. . .

 

"Have you understood all this?" They answered, "Yes." (matthew 13:31-33 , matthew 13:44-52 )

 

the DEVOTION. . .

 

It was after his baptism, after the temptation, that 'the crowd' first appears. Jesus teaches; 'the crowd' listened. He proclaims; they hear. And as his fame spreads, 'the crowd' grows. Jesus has compassion for 'the crowd'. . . harassed. . . helpless. . . He heals their sick. Raises their dead. Feeds them. And they're amazed. Astounded. Filled with awe.

 

When he comes to Jerusalem, 'the crowd' is there. Spreading their cloaks on the ground. Paving his way with branches. Shouting, singing, "Hosanna." But, they're, also, there, that night, in the garden. And they're there, that morning, as well. Crying, "Barabbas!" Shouting, "Crucify!" Then, after that, 'the crowd' is no more, never mentioned again.

 

And Jesus asked 'the crowd', "Do you understand?"

bob barndt, pastor

 
Getting Out the WORD - the fifth sunday after pentecost
Written by Pastor Bob   
Tuesday, 19 July 2011 08:39

the PRAYER. . .

Faithful God, most merciful judge, you care for your children with firmness and compassion. By your Spirit nurture us who live in your kingdom, that we may be rooted in the way of your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.

the READING. . .

"The one who sows the good seed is the Son of Man; the field is the world, and the good seed are the children of the kingdom; the weeds are the children of the evil one, and the enemy who sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are angels. Just as the weeds are collected and burned up with fire, so will it be at the end of the age."                         (matthew 13:24-30 , matthew 13:36-43 )

the DEVOTION. . .

I met Marty my first semester at college. Actually, the first day of my first semester. We became friends and, over the next four years, we explored most of the Southwest together. Camping. Hiking. Taking pictures. And when we weren't traveling, we were working to achieve our dream of eating at every Pizza Hut in metropolitan Phoenix! (Oh to be young, again!) Then, on Halloween, 1977, I was told that Marty had been killed. I thought it was a joke, but the punchline never came.

Then, the crisis. Just a few months before, I'd just decided to head to seminary. I knew Marty was a "Jack Mormon" - Mormon in name only. . . kinda like most of us Lutheran college students! But now, he was dead. And I was trying to figure out where he'd spend eternity. At the time, it seemed important. In god's eyes, was he wheat. . . or weed? A child of the kingdom. . . or a child of the evil one? Saved. . . or. . .

Well, I went to see the pastor, explained the struggle, and waited for an answer. Instead, he asked me a question. "Did you love Marty?" I have to admit, as a twenty-two year old male, I hesitated. But, finally, I said, "Yes." "Then, how," he said. "How can you expect less from god?"

Weeping? Gnashing teeth? Unquenchable fire? Truth is, sometimes - contrary to popular opinon - even weeds are forgiven! Sometimes, even weeds find a place in the kingdom? And sometimes, even weeds find their way into god's barn!

bob barndt, pastor

 
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