Sermon Archive
Sunday Worship at 10 a.m. All are welcome!
Phone: 908-234-2733

Sermon Archive 2017

To read sermons from 2016 Click Here:


Walking on Water

jesuspeterwaterMatthew 14: 22-33
Introduction to the reading
Today we read the last installment of the sermon series for this summer of 2017. Jesus has been instructing his disciples on becoming apostles, sent out to spread the Word of God, the good news of the kingdom of heaven, to everyone and anyone, as Jesus says, “to anyone with ears.”

We have seen that these new apostles will be up against some tough odds: inhospitable environments, ignorance, ridicule, rejection, hostility, even persecution. But also they will be empowered, empowered by the Holy Spirit working from within them to do what they never thought, asked or imagined they could do. Last week, for example, feeding a crowd of over 5000 people with just five loaves of bread and two fish.

Now, today, we hear another tale of divine empowerment. Let anyone with ears to hear, listen…

Read more ...

You Give Them Something to Eat

loavesfishesMatthew  14: 13-21
Introduction to the reading
The story of Jesus’ feeding 5000 people with just five loaves of bread and two fish is the only miracle story found in all four Gospels, a clue to its great significance for the very early church.  It is a story of community and of communion.
The passages just ahead of today’s reading recount two events:

  • Jesus has been rejected as a teacher and prophet in his own home synagogue in Nazareth.  The people took offense at him and therefore he did not perform many deeds of power there, because of their unbelief.
  • John the Baptist - the one who had announced Jesus’ coming and declared him to be the one who would baptize people with the Holy Spirit – John is dead, beheaded by Herod. 

Read more ...

It’s Nothing Really

buriedtreasureMatthew 13: 31-33 and 44-46
Introduction to the reading
Jesus continues to teach his disciples in parables, four short ones this week and with no explanations as before with the Parable of the Sower and the Parable of the Weeds Among the Wheat.  Now we have to figure out the interpretation for ourselves.  Notice that they all begin with “the kingdom of heaven is like…”

Read more ...


seedMatthew 13: 24-30 and 36-43
Introduction to the reading
Our summer sermon series on discipleship continues this week.  The original twelve are being instructed on being apostles, sent out to spread the word, the good news of the kingdom of heaven, to anyone and everyone.  How will it go out there?  What will they be up against?  Who will give them trouble?  Who will listen?  Who will come and follow in the Way of Jesus?

Jesus, you recall, often teaches through parables and stories.  In fact, Matthew says that without a parable, Jesus told them nothing. (Matt. 13:34)  Jesus relies on the power of narrative to bring the message, to make the point.  

Read more ...


sowerandseedMatthew 13: 1-9 and 18-23
Introduction to the reading
We continue with our sermon series on discipleship, Jesus’ instructions to the original twelve.  They are becoming apostles, charged with spreading the good news of the kingdom of heaven to anyone and everyone.  How will it go out there?  What will it be like?  Who will listen?  Who will really hear?  Who will come and follow?

Jesus often teaches through stories and parables and that’s what we’ll be hearing from now on in this series.  Today, the familiar parable of the sower and Jesus’ own explanation of it.

Read more ...

Life in Jesus

myyokeiseasyMatthew 11: 25-30
Introduction to the reading
We continue today with the summer sermon series on discipleship.  Now in week four, we notice a shift in direction.  Chapter 11 begins:  Now when Jesus had finished instructing his twelve disciples, he went on from there to teach and proclaim his message in their cities.  

Having warned them that their work on behalf of the kingdom of heaven will be greeted with resistance, outright hostility, false charges and painful divisions even in their own families, Jesus now resumes his own ministry, teaching and preaching and facing all that trouble himself.  The audience is now the crowds of people who follow him around.  As you will hear, even his prayer to God seems to be offered openly.  Jesus may be speaking to a much larger group now, but the disciples – along with us – are still the ones who are learning from him.

Read more ...

The Reward of Discipleship

givedrinkMatthew 10: 40-42
Introduction to the reading
As we continue our summer series on discipleship, Jesus continues his instruction to the first disciples, the ones who are now apostles, sent out to proclaim the message of the Gospel.  He has been warning them that they will encounter inhospitable environments, rejection, even persecution.  But they will persevere because they know the presence of God with them.

The reward for this ministry is deeply personal to each one.  For they are representatives of Jesus himself.  When they travel, preach, teach and heal, it is Christ whose work will be done by their hands.  The world will meet Jesus through them.

Read more ...

Don't Be Afraid

sparrowsMatthew 10: 24-31
Introduction to the reading
Last week we began our summer sermon series on discipleship, instructions to the first followers of Jesus from the Gospel of Matthew.  They will now be apostles, the ones sent out to make other disciples.

We began with hospitality, or more accurately, the lack of it.  Jesus told his disciples that they may very well face inhospitable environments.

And he told them that if they weren’t well received, they should shake off the dust, leave that town or village and go somewhere else.

Read more ...

Discipleship Begins With Hospitality

sheepamongwolvesMatthew 9:35-10:14
Introduction to the reading
The sermons for this summertime of worship will draw on the lectionary readings from the Gospel of Matthew, as Jesus teaches the disciples about the meaning of discipleship.  They will now be apostles, the ones sent out to make other disciples.  Through them, including Matthew in the list you will hear, Jesus is also teaching those who will have gathered around them as early church congregations.  And then, of course, Jesus is teaching us.

We begin today with the idea of hospitality.

Read more ...

God Saw That It Was Good

creation of adamGenesis 1: 1-5, 26-31 and 2: 1-3
Matthew 5: 13-16
Introduction to the reading – Matthew 5: 13-16

The verses we read today are part of the Sermon on the Mount, actually more like a collection of teachings rather than a sermon.  Jesus reinterprets the old law given to Moses and also offers new law for his disciples.

Verses 13 through 16 may be very familiar to you...

The passages which Elliot read from Genesis, the first book of the Bible, are part of the familiar and beloved creation story:  In the beginning, when God created the heavens and the earth…  Because it was a lot to read, we skipped over the verses where God created the waters and dry land; vegetation; sun, moon and stars; and all the living creatures of ocean, sky and earth.  But you did hear about the creation of humankind and how we are to have dominion over all the rest of the created order, and finally how God rested on the seventh day.  Notice that every time God created something, he saw that it was good – it was all good.

Read more ...

On the Church

pentecost13Acts 2: 1-21
Introduction to the reading
Today is Pentecost – in the Jewish tradition, the Feast of Weeks, a pilgrimage to celebrate the spring barley harvest fifty days after Passover.  Jews from every nation had converged on the temple in Jerusalem, as they had been doing for centuries, and we will hear the names of all the places they had come from.  The whole known world of that time was represented.

Christians mark this day – Pentecost, fifty days after Easter – as the birth day of the Church.  It is the baptismal day that John the Baptist said would come:  “I baptize you with water; but one who is more powerful than I is coming; he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.”  The Holy Spirit did indeed come upon the apostles, as you will hear, and filled them with the ability to speak the Gospel in a whole raft of different languages, thus offering it to all the world.

Read more ...

The Great Commission

commissionMatthew 28: 16-20  
Introduction to the reading
We have arrived at the last Sunday in the season of Easter, the continuing celebration of the resurrection of Jesus.  Since the middle of April, we have been hearing Gospel accounts of how Jesus appeared to the disciples after he had been raised from the dead.  Today we will read another such story from the Gospel of Matthew.

But this week our readings also include a portion from the beginning of the book known as the Acts of the Apostles. This is the account of the Ascension, which Peter read.  The Ascension is a transition from the post-resurrection appearances to the coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, which is next week:  “You will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth,” Jesus told them.  They will go out to parts known and unknown to spread the word of the saving grace of God.

The passage for today essentially does the same, in very particular terms.  It is known as the Great Commission.

Read more ...

khenryRev. Kathryn Henry
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

icon sermons