Sermons

Translating God's Word for a new generation

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It took the Resurrection to reveal God’s eternal plan to save the fallen human race. Who among the people of Jerusalem knew that “this Jesus whom you crucified” would be Lord and Christ? Who knew that it would take His blood to pay for our sins? And, how could the disciples on the road to Emmaus understand that their guest was Jesus, risen from the dead, until He revealed Himself in the breaking of the bread? We would also be clueless were it not for the grace of God in revealing His plan of salvation to us and working faith in our hearts to believe it. To Him be the glory forever!

On Easter evening and again the following Sunday, because the disciples saw Jesus alive, they knew the Resurrection was real, and they believed in Him. They were then able to witness to their faith in spite of opposition and persecution from the Jewish council. Though grieved by various trials, it was the “living hope through the Resurrection of Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 1:3) that enabled the Early Church to rejoice. The reality of the Resurrection becomes evident to people around us as we live out our faith, confessing Jesus as Lord and offering peace and forgiveness in His Name. As others come to faith, they join us and “have life in His Name.” (John 20:31)

Blessed Easter! The bunnies, the eggs, the brunch or ham dinner--all ways our culture has embraced the holiday. At Concordia, we make worship the centerpiece of our Easter celebration. Resurrection morning worship is the non-negotiable element for a Christian celebrating Easter. Here we join in new and age-old songs, in readings as familiar as those at Christmas. Here we stand together and witness the body of Jesus alive and outside the tomb. Here we see firsthand what life looks like--freed from sin and the fear of death. Welcome to real worship this Easter!

It may have come early, but at the same time, not “early enough!” Lent can be a long, hard season of minor chords and somber themes. Now we are in the homestretch. With Palm Sunday, the beginning of the end really begins. We are a stone’s throw from Easter. Today we are reminded in song and word that there is a victory chant at the heart of every soul. Jesus is our victory!

This weekend, Pastor Scott Seidler helps everyone who has ever struggled with figuring out what to pray for when times are crazy. Jesus similarly had some moments where the road ahead wasn’t always the easiest to navigate. Sometimes prayer can feel like we’re throwing divine darts at a God-sized dartboard with the tiniest of bull’s-eyes. Join us and hear again how ready God is to listen and answer the prayers we pray!

Jesus gives us certainty. Have you ever felt uncomfortable and threatened in situations which are beyond your control? In our discomfort and anxiety, our faith in Jesus gives us comfort and assurance. Our faith in Him means we are His possession; He has assured us that we belong to Him and nothing will snatch us out of His hand. While we can’t control the future, He can and does. This is the foundation for the unique assurance that we have in Jesus. Come what may, whether our world would judge it good or bad, God has promised that He will be with us and nothing will separate us from the love we have received!

The orientation of Lent is always Cross-ward. Whether by message or movement, the themes of Lent always lead to the Cross, where our eternal hope is found. This weekend, Pastor Seidler also leads us as we watch Jesus turn Cross-ward while His follower, Peter, resists--much like those of us who live 20 centuries later. But, there is no resisting God’s plan. When Christ sets His face toward our spiritual rescue and the forgiveness of our sins, there is no stopping Him! We rest in that resolve.

Sacrifice means giving up on some pleasurable things in order to acquire something of greater value. This week in worship, we confront the conflict between sacrifice and temptation. Daily we are tempted, sometimes by the most base of our desires. Jesus calls us and provides the example for our flight, our sacrifice, from those temptations!

How are those New Year’s resolutions? It’s around this time we annually ask about our progress on first-of-the-year goals. God expects our resolutions to be daily endeavors. Daily we “drown the old man” so that a new soul can rise up and tackle all that God has called us to do and say. Through our Winter worship series, For the Greater Glory: Faith in the Fight for Life, Pastor Seidler helps us put faith into action. Next, we will descend into the trenches of Christianity and learn what we are to fight for, just as last weekend we learned what we are to fight against!

How are those New Year’s resolutions? It’s around this time we annually ask about our progress on first-of-the-year goals. God expects our resolutions to be daily endeavors. Daily we “drown the old man” so that a new soul can rise up and tackle all that God has called us to do and say. Through our Winter worship series, For the Greater Glory: Faith in the Fight for Life, Pastor Seidler helps us put faith into action. Next, we will descend into the trenches of Christianity and learn what we are to fight for, just as last weekend we learned what we are to fight against!