29Feb

Condemned by the Righteous (Mark 14:53-72)

This week as we continue to look at the 24 hours that changed the world, we come to the trial of Jesus by the Sanhedrin.  It's been widely accepted that this so-called trial was a sham, a travesty of justice, which was set up to serve the purpose of once and for all getting Jesus out of the picture.  The Jewish religious rulers had already determined that they would have Jesus executed, and now they just needed a reason to do so.  And the irony is, the so-called religious people were condemning to death the very God they supposedly worshiped and adored. But this trial wasn't just about Jesus.  As we will soon see, it was a trial for two people, and in the end both were convicted.


Recorded at Ebenezer UMC on February 28, 2016 (some parts recorded at Hudson UMC)
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23Feb

The Garden of Gethsemane (Mark 14:26,32-42)

As we continue our Lenten journey through the 24 Hours That Changed the World, we come to one of the darkest places in the gospels, the Garden of Gethsemane.  In today's reading we are given a glimpse into the humanity of Christ, and we hear the very private prayer of Jesus to God the Father.  It's a moment that we can all relate to, the feeling of helplessness, that the world is pressing down upon us.  Yet Jesus caps off his prayer with a demonstration of his own faithful obedience to the will of God, when he says "Yet not what I want, but what you want."  It's a very telling moment, and one which we, as followers of Christ, can use to grow even closer to the nature of Christ.


Recorded at Hudson UMC on February 21, 2016 (portions also recorded at Ebenezer UMC)

I should point out that this recording was made on a day when we had a baptism and there were tons of kids running around.  As a pastor, I'm OK with that.  They're making a joyful noise to the Lord!
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16Feb

The Last Supper (Mark 14:12,22-25)

We are continuing our study of 24 Hours That Changed the World, a book by Adam Hamilton.  In this first Sunday of Lent we take a look at the Last Supper and the institution of Holy Communion that arose from it.  We also look at what it means to do things in remembrance and how Communion arose out of the Jewish memorial feast of Passover, and compare and contrast the Passover to Communion as well as the things that they are each intended to memorialize.


Recorded at Ebenezer UMC on February 14, 2016
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15Feb

Preparing for the Meal (Luke 22:7-13)

Ash Wednesday is the first day in the season of Lent, the season on the church calendar that leads into Easter.  Lent is marked by fasting, prayer, and penitence, and has been traditionally associated with preparing converts to Christianity for baptism.  This year we are doing a churchwide study based on Adam Hamilton's book, 24 Hours That Changed the World.  It's an in-depth look at the final day of Christ's life before his death on the cross.  On this Ash Wednesday, we begin with an introduction to the Last Supper, and look at what it means to prepare for a meal.


Recorded at Hudson UMC on Ash Wednesday, February 10, 2016
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4Feb

Overwhelmed (Matthew 2:1-12)

Overwhelmed.  We often use this word to describe things like taxes, bills, and work.  But in today's reading from the Lectionary, we read that the wise men from the East saw the star and were overwhelmed with joy.  On this Epiphany Sunday, we take a closer look at the three major players in this narrative from Matthew, and we determine for ourselves, with which one do we most closely identify?  Are we troubled by the coming of Christ, or are we, like the Magi, overwhelmed with joy?


Recorded at Hudson UMC on January 3, 2016
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