He Sat Down

Text: Hebrews 1:1-3, 10:11-12
Rev. Dave Bindewald

The first century Jewish converts to Christianity who were the first recipients of Hebrews were familiar with persecution. Now, as then, persecution tends to weed out “dead wood”, causes us to rethink and clarify our conversion, and strengthens us spiritually. As our perfect high priest and God’s final answer to our need for deliverance from sin, Jesus offered the perfect once-for-all sacrifice for us and then he sat down at the right hand of the Father where he remains in session as our prophet, priest and king.

God of the Details

Text: Isaiah 7:1-17
Rev. John Kenyon

The Deist god is one who set the cosmos in motion and then stepped away. But as we see in today’s text, our God of the Bible is intimately present in the details of his people’s lives through all of redemptive history, including the coming of Messiah and down to the present day. May we take great comfort in our loving God who is near to us in the details.

Our Faithful God, our Great Reward

Text: Genesis 15
Mr. Brian Shirak

We understand that all of Scripture points to Christ, from Genesis to Revelation. Today we see our faithful covenant-making and covenant-keeping God unilaterally making a way for Abram, and each one of us, to belong to him as his well-loved children. The sign and seal of that covenant is the cross of Christ our savior.

Kingdom Characteristics

Text: Luke 18:1-17
Dr. Peter Green

Have you ever thought about what kind of people God wants in his family? Today’s text covers two parables and a real life example involving protagonists who were not highly esteemed in Jewish culture of the day. Through them, Jesus teaches us that citizens of his kingdom are to be characterized by hopeful persistence, repentant humility and childlike dependence. We do well to take inventory individually and as a congregation whether we display these qualities and whether the poor, the vulnerable and the despised would feel welcomed into our midst.

No Condemnation

Text: Romans 8:1-4
RE Ken Rolston

How do we move from the condemnation of all unrighteousness announced in chapter 1 of Romans to the gracious declaration of no condemnation that we hear in today’s text? It is a result of God’s initiative in doing what we in our flesh are unable to do. For those of us who are in Christ, we are released from the law of death and freed to walk in the law of the Spirit of life. We are called to lives of grace, righteousness, life and freedom.

Hope in the Lord

Text: Psalm 130
Brandon Wilcox

All of us know from personal experience what it is like to go through circumstances that might tempt us to anxiety and despair. The psalmist reassures us in today’s text that no matter how overwhelming a position we may find ourselves in, we can hope in the Lord, the one who hears our cries, forgives our sins and has proven to be our trustworthy redeemer. Because this hope is founded on God’s character and his covenant promises to his people, it is a sure hope that will not disappoint.

A Permanent Joy

Text: Luke 10:17-24
Dr. Peter Green

Are we characterized by joy in our lives? An honest answer is likely to be that we are at times, but not always. That’s because we often seek joy in something transient and impermanent. In reality, we can only find lasting joy in permanent good news, in the gospel. In today’s text, Jesus exhorts us to rejoice not in our transient success or power but rather in what really matters which is our guaranteed position in Christ that we receive freely by grace as the Holy Spirit applies it to our hearts.

Riches in Christ: Shared with Us

Text: Ephesians 1:15-19
RE John Tittle

After detailing all of the lavish spiritual blessings we enjoy in Christ in the first 14 verses of this chapter, Paul turns to prayer in today’s text, calling us individually and corporately to a heart response of deep gratitude, encouraging us to a lifetime of growing in the knowledge of God, and the hope, riches and power we already securely enjoy in him.

The Presence, Posture and Provision of Jesus

Text: Mark 6:30-44
Mr. Brian Shirak

Because we tend to forget, today’s text is faithful to remind us that the people of Jesus’ day were enamored by his presence, were witnesses of his posture of compassion and love toward them, and literally tasted his provision for them. Today when current circumstances press upon us and tempt us to forget, may we be reminded that our unchanging Savior is still near to us, loving us and providing for us.

Following Jesus from the Cross to the Resurrection

Text: Luke 9:18-36
Dr. Peter Green

Because of his great love for us, Jesus gives very clear instructions in today’s text both to his disciples but also to us regarding the cost and reward of discipleship. We follow him because he is God’s Messiah. Following him requires the daily, repeated denial of comfort, material security and relationships. But we also follow Jesus to — and through — the cross to the hope of the resurrection that he secured for us.