Christ the Victor (Mark 16:1-6)

Easter Sunday, or Resurrection Sunday, is the day on the church calendar when we celebrate the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.  After suffering torture and death on the cross for our sins, he was laid in the tomb, and on the third day he rose from the dead, just as he told his disciples he would.  If it weren't for the resurrection, Paul tells us, our faith is in vain, because we do not have the promise of eternal life in Christ Jesus.  Yet two thousand years later Christ is still winning victories in peoples' lives - people like me, and perhaps like you as well.

Recorded at Ebenezer UMC on March 27, 2016 (Easter Sunday)


Whom Are You Seeking? (John 20:1-18)

We have finally come to Easter and as is our tradition at Hudson UMC, we hold our Easter Sunrise Service at 6:30 AM in front of the cemetery.  It's a stark reminder that the women went to the tomb of Jesus early in the morning on that first day of the week, just as the sun was coming up.  And in the cold morning air we begin to see the light of day approaching and feel the warmth of the Sun as it lights up the world around us.  This year we look at the testimony of John, and his account of Mary Magdalene's encounter with the risen Christ.  This scene from the Bible so inspired C. Austin Miles that he wrote his most famous hymn, In The Garden, based upon the text.  May we also be inspired to meet the risen Christ on this Easter Sunday!

Recorded at Hudson UMC Cemetery, March 27, 2016 (Easter Sunrise)


The Heart of the Master (John 19:25b-27)

When we look at the seven last words of Christ on the cross, one saying that truly shows the heart of Christ is recorded in the book of John - Woman, here is your son, and Son, here is your mother.  By caring for his widowed mother as he hung on the cross, Jesus did more than just show compassion for one person, but rather, he revealed his heart to be that of God, in that right to the end he was caring for orphans and widows.  People often wonder about the deity of Christ, and yet here it is on display for all to see.  It's a rather revealing word that John gives us.

Recorded at St.Paul's UMC on March 25, 2016 (Good Friday)


The Crucifixion (Mark 15:25-39)

We are still in the midst of our Lenten series, based on Adam Hamilton's book 24 Hours that Changed the World.  On this Palm Sunday, we find Jesus on the cross, which was literally the darkest moment in Christian history.  The disciples were scattered, their Master was dead and laid in a tomb.  Certainly this would be the end of all that Messiah nonsense, or so the religious leaders thought.  Today we know that the crucifixion was not the end, but the beginning.  But the first followers of Christ thought that it signalled the end of their movement and worse, potentially the end of their own lives.

By the way, this is our 100th episode!  Listen to the end of the podcast for a special announcement (-:

Recorded at Hudson UMC on March 20, 2016


The Torture and Humiliation of the King (Mark 15:15-23)

We come now to the final hours of Jesus' life and it's not a particularly pleasant picture.  We have already seen how brutal the Roman scourging can be in last week's message.  This week, we look at Jesus' arduous journey over a third of a mile carrying a hundred pound crossbeam.  After the scourging and the humiliation of the soldiers, it proves to be too much physically for the man Jesus.  And so a man from another city altogether is pressed into service.  The actions of Simon of Cyrene are so pertinent to the story of Christ and these 24 hours that they have been recorded in three of the four gospels.  And as we look at this journey we have to ask ourselves, what part would I have played in the crowd, had I been there?  And what part do I play today?

Recorded at Hudson UMC on March 13, 2016


Jesus, Barabbas, and Pilate (Mark 15:1-15)

This week as we continue our journey through the 24 Hours that Changed the World by Adam Hamilton, we come to the criminal trial of Jesus by the Roman governor, Pontius Pilate.  Here we find in Pilate a ruthless and harsh Roman authority who is curiously reluctant to condemn Jesus to death.  Yet in the end he relents, not because of justice or mounting evidence against Jesus, but because he wanted to appease the people.  We even see him trying to give the Jews a more undesirable choice - freeing Jesus or freeing the murderous insurectionist Barabbas.  And yet we also see that the place Jesus took on the cross was not just Barabbas', but also yours and mine.

Recorded at Ebenezer UMC on March 6, 2016


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