Sermons on Matthew

Sermons on Matthew

Love Your Enemies

It’s hard to love people who make us angry, isn’t it? And the people with whom we disagree on very fundamental things, like God, morality, and good and evil. And people who have hurt us or our families, or who make life difficult for us at work or school. Or people who talk about us behind our backs. The list could go on, I suppose. Jesus says to love even them. Especially them. Part of what makes us different from…

That Other Side of Jesus: He Talks About Fiery Furnaces

Three weeks ago I introduced a short sermon series (click here to view) about the importance of seeing Jesus as he is portrayed in the Bible, and not just in the way that makes us most comfortable. We all like to think about the Jesus who held babies and forgave sinners and ate dinner at tax collectors’ houses. We may not be as comfortable with “that other side of Jesus”: the one who turns over tables, talks about “weeping and…

Let the little children come to me

In the month of May, we’re having a “Train up a Child” campaign—we’re hoping to be able to fill all of our children’s Bible class rotations with teachers through May 2019. In conjunction with this emphasis, we studied the text above. We discussed how children weren’t highly valued in the world of antiquity for different reasons, which may explain why the disciples discouraged people from bringing them to Jesus. The disciples also probably had an inflated sense of their own…

Immanuel: God With Us

Text: Matthew 1:18-25  18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. 19 And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly. 20 But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying,…

Is Your Lamp Burning?

In some fundamentalist-type religious groups, you hear about the second coming all the time, usually pointing to something going on in the world today as a sure sign that “Jesus is coming soon!” so you’d better “Repent or perish!” But in others (probably most), you hear little, maybe because talk of judgment and Jesus’ second coming is usually associated with the kind of church mentioned above, and most of us don’t want to be connected to that. But, truth be…

Show Me the Coin

There’s a lot of talk these days about the relationship between Christians and government. This isn’t a new kind of tension, because apparently Jesus’ peers had similar discussions. In this short text, Jesus doesn’t solve all of the difficulties, of course—Paul would later reflect on this this theme more in Romans 13—but he speaks to some of the tensions in his world: he didn’t side with the Zealots, who wanted to rebel against the government, and neither did he side…

The Great Commission

This is the last sermon of this four-part sermon series. Three weeks ago I spoke on The Great Compassion (Matt 9:35-38 — Jesus’ love for us); two weeks ago we studied The Great Confession (Matt 16:13-23); last Sunday: The Great Commandment (Matt 22:34-40 — love God and neighbor). Notice how the series progresses from Jesus’ love for us (Compassion), to our response to him (Confession: He is the Son of God), to our living out the call of discipleship (Commandment:…