June 17, 2018
Steve DeNeff - Genesis 22:1-18. Have you ever wanted something, more than anything, only to get it and be asked to lay it down again? “Take your son, your only son whom you love . . . and sacrifice him there (on Moriah),” (Gen. 22:2). This unspeakable ask, from God to Abraham, to sacrifice the very thing God gave us is at the core of our faith. It is something God himself has done (see John 3:16) and something every one of us, at one time or another, will be asked to do. But it is here, at the altar, where God raises what we sacrifice so that it is more powerful than before (see Heb. 11:19).
June 10, 2018
Rev.Alex Mandura - Genesis 9:8-17. Noah and The Flood. For many of us, we know the story, we learned about it in Sunday School. And yet for others they know it only from the people who are debating the historical facts in the public square. In both these cases, the purpose for telling this ancient story gets submerged. Craig Bartholomew wrote “A major feature of any story is its central conflict, the thing that goes wrong and needs to be fixed.” The Flood story is about the relationship and conflict between God and creation. The climax involves a deluge of water never encountered before and a boat full of animals. The resolution; well, that’s the plot twist in our story.
June 3, 2018
Rev. Matthew Beck - Genesis 1:26-31. Henri Nouwen said, "One of the tragedies of our life is that we keep forgetting who we are.” How do we find ourselves again? We re-collect our stories by recollecting the Story of God. In other words, we remember by retelling. The overarching narrative of Scripture and the individuals stories in the library of the Bible, answer our most foundational human question, "Who am I?” with an ever better divine one, “Who is God?”. In our summer series we’ll explore how God reveals himself to humanity in a series of Old Testament stories, starting at the beginning: God creating and his unique imprint on the first humans: "the Imago Dei".
May 27, 2018
Rev. Emily Vermilya - Acts 2:42-47. The book of Acts is filled with stories of grandeur—healings, revival, and an assortment of overt demonstrations of the power of God. These accounts, like the momentous and extraordinary experiences of our lives today, are significant to our understanding of God and the story he is unfolding. But what of the seemingly “lesser” moments of the life of the 1st Century Church—or of our lives, for that matter? Was/Is God any less active in the everyday, unspectacular moments? And is it possible that God’s most formative work is being accomplished in these ordinary times?
May 20, 2018
Rev. Eric Crisp - Acts 2:1-21. The story of Pentecost reminds us of the promise of Jesus to empower his followers with the power of the Holy Spirit. Often, however, we either doubt that this power is available for us or we try to manipulate or form the Holy Spirit for our own purposes. But Acts 2 also reminds us that the Spirit shows up and forms us, not the other way around. This sermon will explore the questions, "What does the community empowered by the Holy Spirit look like?" and "When do we have a posture that is open to the Spirit?"
May 13, 2018
Rev. Steve DeNeff - John 20:19-23
May 6, 2018
Steve DeNeff - Revelation 1:12-18. "Stuck on the island of Patmos on the Lord’s day.” That’s how John describes himself moments before he encountered the risen Lord. Patmos was a kind of Alcatraz for the Romans – a place where prisoners go and are never heard from again – but as John stands on the shores, contemplating his grim future, he turns around to see “the Living One...(who) was dead and behold, is alive forever more,” (Rev. 1:17-18). What John discovers is that God has a plan for, not only him, but the whole world. There is a new day coming. God has a plan for the ages.
April 29, 2018
Steve DeNeff - Acts 22:2-21; 2 Cor. 5:16-18. Salvation is often portrayed, in evangelical circles, as the acquiescence to a series of good beliefs – Jesus died, Jesus rose again – but the resurrection reminds us is that Easter is, at its core, about a personal encounter with One who is alive and active in this world. Saul (turned Paul) was one who came late for Easter, who was “abnormally born,” as he put it (1 Cor 15:8). The conversion of Saul is a window into how active Jesus is for the gospel today. Who do you know that is late for Easter? What hope do you have that they will ever find it? Take heart in the story of Saul, that even though your friends are far from God, He is still pursuing them. He still has a plan for them and He will not rest until He has found them.
April 22, 2018
Steve DeNeff - Matt. 27:57-61; John 20:10-18. Anyone who has attended a funeral knows how solemn, and sometimes devastating a moment that can be. So Mary has come to the garden to pay her respects and finds, to her amazement, that Jesus’ body is gone. There can only be one explanation: someone has stolen it. But this is no ordinary funeral. On Easter, things are not as they seem. This is a different garden and there is something that Mary doesn’t know. And what she learns, that first Easter, is good news for everyone like her who search for hope.
April 15, 2018
Ethan Linder - John 20:24-29. When we come to church, we often hear people saying (like the disciples did), “I have seen the Lord!” while others, like Thomas, find ourselves farther from belief than we wish. This can produce isolation, shame, and unworthiness that propels us from the community of faith. This sermon will work to unravel some of that shame and doubt while exploring what happens when Jesus shows up and invites “those who have not seen” to “yet still believe.”