Sermons

Trinity 10 (Lk 19:41–48)

Bethlehem Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO
Immanuel Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO

INI + AMEN.

Peace! That’s what the Lord wants. Not just peace of mind. But actual peace. He doesn’t want some human idea of world peace. That’s just an empty substitution, an idol, instead of the true peace He wants. He wants peace between Him and all humanity. He wants “peace on earth”—no more separation between God and men. He wants His mercy, “peace, goodwill” to be “toward men,” that is, for men, for you—each of you.

What the Lord wants, He gets. He moves all of human history to do it. Abraham. Isaac. Jacob. The children of Israel. Egypt. Exodus. David. Prophets. Priests. Blood sacrifices. Tabernacle. Temple. All waiting for, all preparing for, all pointing to One—Jesus, God with a body. There, in Him, is the Lord God getting what He wants for you—peace.

Jesus is our “Peace-maker,” but how? What are “the things that make for your peace,” as Jesus says today? Certainly, all of history that Jesus moved in order to come, but more specific than that. Jesus “made peace by the blood of His cross.” His body given and His blood shed are the things that make for peace. That’s the Lord’s way. Where all the Old Testament pointed. Where even you, today, should look for peace.

JESUS’ BODY AND BLOOD MAKE FOR YOUR PEACE. Continue reading

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Sermons

Trinity 9 (Lk 16:1–9)

Bethlehem Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO
Immanuel Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO

INI + AMEN.

Jesus is the king of parables. No one can tell story quite like He can. He’s the author of Life. Writing, weaving, tying all stories into His one salvation story. Jesus, the master story teller, can always tell a story that makes heads turn. Certainly our Gospel text, today, does that. Jesus told his parable, and said a few more things about money, and Luke tells us, “The Pharisees, who were lovers of money, heard all these things, and they ridiculed him.” In fact, Jesus told all His parables to make people scratch their heads. He tells a parable about a Sower, and we get hung up on the soils. He tells a parable about Him saving 100% and not works, and we get hung up on being the Samaritan. And today, He tells a parable that involves a manager forgiving debs, and we get hung up on the money. Continue reading

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Sermons

Trinity 7 (Mk 8:1–9)

Bethlehem Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO
Immanuel Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO

INI + AMEN.

Eden. The Decapolis. Here. The Lord always has a place for His Word. A Word to a place, a Word to a person, a Word through a person, a Word of promise—now, that’s the Lord’s way of doing things. Place, person to, person through, and promise all come together according to the Lord’s gracious provision, blessing, and working. All that’s left for us is to receive and rejoice. Continue reading

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Sermons

Trinity 6 (Mt 5:20–26)

Bethlehem Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO
Immanuel Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO

INI + AMEN.

“Unless your righteousness is abundantly more than the scribes and pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”

Righteousness. Right-ness. Holiness. Purity. There is no other way. That’s the Lord’s way. That’s who He is: holiness, purity, and righteousness. He’s set apart from everything else, different from everyone else.

We’re not that. Not in ourselves. Ours isn’t the set apart way, the holy way, the right way. We’re common. Just like everyone else out there. As a Christian you’re completely holy and righteous in Jesus—only in Jesus—but in yourself, left to yourself, you live just like people who want nothing to do with Jesus.

The Lord’s gracious and merciful. He’s kind. He delivers steadfast love to those who “fear, love, and trust in Him.” His steadfast love is everlasting. As long as Jesus lives, that’s how long steadfast love lasts. Jesus is steadfast love: His death and resurrection for sinners, for those who hate Him. Talk about being merciful, kind, generous, and loving! Continue reading

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Sermons

Trinity 3 (Lk 15:1–10)

Trinity 3 (Lk 15:1–10)

Bethlehem Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO
Immanuel Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO

INI + AMEN.

((5. Oops!: We’re all tribal.))

We’re all tribal. That’s the problem in the world. Tribalism. Isolated items broken off into groups who look, act, think, and do the same way you do.

So you get the pharisees in our text. That’s how they were with the Tax Collectors and sinners. Sinners were those who lived “that way.” You know. Could be the prostitutes, the drunks, the divorced, the fill in the blank. That was the Pharisees.

So you get us, too. We break off. We isolate ourselves. Them and us. Us is everyone who agrees with us, well, agrees with me, right? They talk, act, think, work, and do like I do. Family, friends. Those people who are “them” can become part of “us.” They’ve just gotta acclimate, gotta change their way of doing things, change their thinking. Then that person can join “us,” and only then we’ll love them, be kind to them, and not only treat them like they matter, but actually think and feel like they matter. Continue reading

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Sermons

Trinity 2 (Lk 14:15–24)

Bethlehem Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO
Immanuel Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO

INI + AMEN.

The Lord wants a full feast. He wants all to taste of His Supper, wants everyone to enjoy the eternal party He’s prepared. Everything’s ready. He made sure of that. 100% He did everything. There was nothing left out of the Lord’s preparation.

It was an eternally planned party, and so the Lord sends out His Servant. The “Servant of the Lord,” as Isaiah as it, comes. He announces the Good News, the Gospel: “Come, for everything is now ready.” The Servant’s coming is the sign that it is ready. His coming is the final and most important step of everything being made ready. He proclaims the feast: “Take, eat; this is My body, which is given for you. Drink of it, all of you; this cup is the new testament in My blood, which is shed for you for the forgiveness of sins.”

And in this Supper, a preparation for the feast to come. For here His body and blood, the very things used to save you, are given you to eat and to drink. Life. Eternal life given away here at His Supper. Eternal life right into your mouth. Just like you learned in confirmation: “For where there is forgiveness of sins, there is also life and salvation.” That’s the sort of Supper the Lord’s Servant, Jesus, announces for you.

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Sermons

Trinity 1 (Lk 19–35; Ps 13:5)

Bethlehem Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO

Immanuel Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO

INI + AMEN.

All eyes on the Lord. That’s faith. That’s what it means to trust Him. All eyes, all ears on Him, His Word, and His Gifts. Holy Baptism! There trust in Him is given, there is being “born from above,” there “born of water and of the Spirit,” as Jesus says. That’s John 3, Nicodemus at night stuff. That was last week: Holy Trinity Sunday.

But all eyes on the Lord, trusting in Him, His Holy Baptism—that’s also this week. (Very much this morning—Luke Nickolas!) But that’s rich man and Lazarus stuff, too. Trust isn’t only what your eyes are on, but also your heart, your soul, your mind—your everything, really. All that is you toward the Lord—Him and His Word and His Gifts alone. That’s 1st Commandment trust in Him. But trust can also be off. Whatever you trust in is your god. Whatever you’re most afraid of loosing, of having torn down and taken away, of being without—that, too, is your god.

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