The Lighthouse Keeper

Greetings from Pastor Kerry, former pastor of Spring City UMC. This blog contains my sermon outlines and/or manuscripts from my pastorate among the people of Spring City PA, from 2006 to 2011. Pastor Dennis is now the lighthouse keeper. Come and worship on Sundays at 10:00 a.m.!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

The Circle of Lent 1/5: Harmony and Sin

March 13, 2011
First Sunday of Lent

The Circle of Lent: Harmony and Sin
#1 of 5

Matthew 4:1-11 and Genesis 2:15-17, 3:1-7
“You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.” – Genesis 2:16-17

My sermon outline:

• I had an idea for sermon series: pictures came into mind illustrating various stages of relationship, including sin, confession, forgiveness, repentance, absolution. Fits nicely for Lent... (purple by the way, for royalty as well as suffering)

• First picture is two folks walking. In this picture possibly equals. Maybe married couple, maybe friends, maybe pastor and member.. two beings in relationship with each other, walking together in harmony. In unity. Same path.

Could be God. (think about the Footprints poem, walking with God.) Even in Genesis God walked in the garden. God was in relationship with people, talking with people.

• As we read in Genesis, though, people left the path.
God had a path for Adam & Eve. And how was it? It was VERY GOOD. What did they have? EVERY THING THEY NEEDED. More than they needed. God provided. But they left the path.

• I left the path once (once). Long story short, I knew I could find a better way home from the ski area than the printed pamphlet's directions. I ended up adding 2-3 hours of travel time to a 90 minute trip. (cue the music: Fleetwood Mac 1977 You Can Go Your Own Way... 1969 Frank Sinatra I Did It My Way)

• Jesus had a path. Had a purpose in life, which was to do the will of his father. My food is to do the will of the one who sent me (John 4:34). Spirit led him into wilderness, he went. Spirit led him to do Godknowswhat for 40 days in the wilderness, and that’s what he did.

Satan tempts him. Not to do something nasty or anything, just have some bread, use the power God gave you and make bread appear. Guess what, spirit wasn’t leading Jesus that way. No go.

Trust angels to save you. spirit wasn’t leading Jesus that way. No go.

Worship Satan... spirit wasn’t leading Jesus that way. No go. Jesus wasn’t gonna go where spirit wasn’t leading him.

Garden of Gethsemane, like to have a different path... Not my will but thine.

Jesus knew who he was and whose he was, clearly knew purpose

• Willard Harley Policy of Joint Agreement:
Never do anything without enthusiastic agreement between you and your spouse.

Relating to God... never do anything w/o enthusiastic agreement between you and God.

• Does that sound restrictive or freeing? Recall garden God provided abundance not scarcity. Recall God’s map for you... study it. Include prayer and worship and service and humility.

God wants your life to be in step with God and full and very good.

Allow your life to be full and very good by seeking to be in step with God.

• Hymn 355 Depth of Mercy (read verses. Charles was 33yo, had been ordained for 5 years, strangely warmed for 2. verses 2 and 3 express separation. Thank God for the grace in 4. plea for change in 5. let this be your confession and prayer.

- Pastor Kerry

This Sunday: 56 in worship.


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