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Sermon for the 4th Sunday of Lent  2019

March 31, 2019

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Sermon for 11th Sunday after Pentecost 2018

August 5, 2018

2ndSamuel 11:26-12:13a    Psalms 51:1-13   Ephesians 4:1-16   John 6:24-35

 

     A devout cowboy lost his favorite Bible while he was mending fences out on the range.  Three weeks later, a sheep walked up to him carrying the Bible in its mouth.  The cowboy couldn’t believe his eyes.  He took the precious book out of the sheep’s moth, raised his eyes to heaven and yelled, “It’s a miracle!”  The sheep said, “Not really, your name is written inside the cover.”  

     It’s not a miracle that the Bible was returned.  Anyone could’ve done it since the cowboy’s name was written in it.  The miracle is the talking sheep, which no one expects and the cowboy doesn’t recognize.  It is similar with the miracles of John.  The point isn’t the miracle; it’s the nature of the one who performs the miracle.

     Miracles in John’s Gospel are not magic: they are not tricks intended to amuse or impress; indeed, they are not even acts of compassion, where people are fed or healed.  Miracles for John are signs.  They are a disclosure of the very nature of God.  So the heart of the narrative is the conversation with the crowd.  The crowd tracks Jesus down.  Jesus explains that the crowd is missing the point when they just see their hunger satisfied.  The truth is not the miracle of the loaves and fishes, but is a miracle about the revelation of God and the very sustenance that God can provide through Christ.

     Some may think that Jesus is more difficult to comprehend than he ought to be