|Fourteenth Sunday After Pentecost, Year C||August 25, 2013||Proper 16, Year C||Isaiah 58:9b-14;Psalm 103:1-8;Hebrews 12:18-29;Luke 13:10-17|
|Thirteenth Sunday After Pentecost, Year C||August 18, 2013||Proper 15, Year C||Hebrews 11:29-12:2|
|Twelfth Sunday After Pentecost, Year C||August 11, 2013||Proper 14, Year C||Genesis 15:1-6, Hebrews 11:1-3, 8-16, Luke 12:32-40|
|Eleventh Sunday After Pentecost, Year C||August 4, 2013||Proper 13, Year C||Colossians 3:1-17|
|Ninth Sunday After Pentecost, Year C||July 21, 2013||Proper 11, Year C||Genesis 18:1-10a, Colossians 1:15-28, Luke 10:38-42|
|Tenth Sunday After Pentecost, Year C||July 21, 2013||Proper 12, Year C||Luke 11:1-13|
|Eighth Sunday After Pentecost, Year C||July 14, 2013||Proper 10, Year C||Luke 10:25-37, Deuteronomy 30:9-14|
|Seventh Sunday After Pentecost, Year C||July 7, 2013||Proper 9, Year C||Isaiah 66:10-14, Luke 10:1-11, 16-20|
|➤Sixth Sunday After Pentecost, Year C||June 30, 2013||Proper 8, Year C||Psalm 16, Galatians 5:1, 13-25, Luke 9:51-62|
|Warrington Tripp speaks on the Gideons||June 30, 2013||Proper 8, Year C||Isaiah 55:11, Kings 19:32-35|
|Fifth Sunday After Pentecost, Year C||June 23, 2013||Fifth Sunday After Pentecost, Year C, Proper 7||Galatians 3:23-29|
|Fourth Sunday After Pentecost, Year C||June 16, 2013||Proper 6, Year C||2 Samuel 11:26-12:10, 13-15; Psalm 32, Galatians 2:15-21, Luke 7:36-8:3|
|Third Sunday After Pentecost, Year C||June 9, 2013||Third Sunday after Pentecost, Proper 5, Year C||Psalm 30, I Kings 17:17-24, Galatians 1:11-24, Luke 7:11-17|
|Second Sunday After Pentecost, Year C||June 2, 2013||Second Sunday after Pentecost, Proper 4, Year C||I Kings 8:22-23, 41-43; Psalm 96:1-9; Luke 7:1-10|
|First Sunday After Pentecost, Year C – Trinity Sunday||May 26, 2013||Trinity Sunday, Year C||Proverbs 8:1-4, 22-31; Psalm 8; Romans 5:1-5, John 16:12-15|
Sixth Sunday After Pentecost, Year C
Sermon Date:June 30, 2013
Scripture: Psalm 16, Galatians 5:1, 13-25, Luke 9:51-62
Liturgy Calendar: Proper 8, Year C
Jesus set his face to go to Jerusalem.
This passage marks the beginning of the journey toward the rejection, crucifixion and death that Jesus must pass through on the way to his resurrection and ascension.
Jesus knows what is ahead, and yet faces his future with stoic resolve and unwavering commitment.
Those who wish to follow Jesus aren’t so single-minded.
His own disciples, James and John, want to waste time straightening out the Samaritan village that rejects Jesus by calling God’s wrath down on it.
And a little later, as they travel along the road, Jesus and the disciples meet three other would be disciples.
The first would be follower seems to be unaware of the sacrifices that will be involved if he actually decides to follow Jesus.
The second will follow, but in his own time—only after his father has died and has been buried.
And the third must get the blessing of his family before joining Jesus on the journey.
Actually, I have a great deal of sympathy for all of these would-be followers. Who can blame the disciples for being furious over the rejection that Jesus experiences at the hands of the Samaritans?
Like the enthusiastic person who quickly promises to follow Jesus, I’ve certainly jumped in over my head plenty of times, committing to something I had no idea would be so difficult and demanding.
Would I abandon a loved one who needed my care to hurry down the road after a stranger, even one as charismatic as Jesus?
And certainly I’d want my family to know where I’d gone and hopefully get their blessing before taking off to follow a wandering preacher and healer.
The Jesus we travel with in this gospel today reminds us—as disciples, we too need stoic resolve and unwavering commitment if we want to be his disciples.
Paul also addresses this issue of resolve and commitment in his letter to the Galatians.
He tells the Galatians to live by the Spirit and to be guided by the Spirit.
To live by the Spirit and to be guided by the Spirit demands the stoic resolve and unwavering commitment that Jesus models for us in his journey to Jerusalem.
But how do we live by the Spirit here and now? How can we be guided by the Spirit in spite of the cares and distractions in our everyday lives? How can answer God’s call?
I like what Gordon Fee, a New Testament scholar, has to say in response to this question.
And Gordon Fee says simply—we have to take one step at a time. We do not become perfect disciples overnight.
We have to decide to take one step, then another, then another, to walk along, being led by the Spirit along the path of discipleship, to decide to stay focused on being disciples rather than getting distracted.
Which as Paul points out, is the journey toward the freedom God has given us through the power of the Holy Spirit—the freedom to love our neighbors as ourselves and to put the common good above our individual desires.
Now I’ll have much more to say about this passage from Galatians in the study of Galatians that I’ll be leading during August—on the evenings of the 12th through the 15th, which I hope you all will plan to attend.
But for now, I’d like to offer you one example of modern day discipleship, following Jesus, and being led and guided by the Spirit.
Warrington Tripp is with us today. Warrington is a Gideon, and as you know, the mission of the Gideons is to share the love of Jesus Christ with those who need to know about that love—and that’s all of us. The Gideons spread the good news of God.
For the rest of the time set aside for the sermon today, Warrington is going to share the story of his discipleship as a Gideon, and tell us about the work of this organization.
And your homework for this week is to ponder what Warrington has to say, and then to consider the fruits of the spirit that Paul spells out for the Galatians and for us—love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control.
How can you, as a disciple of Jesus Christ, grow these fruits in your family, in this church, in our community, and in the world?
How can you reach out, with resolve and commitment, bearing these fruits, and proclaim the Good News?
Resource: Galatians, by Gordon D. Fee. Pentecostal Commentary Series. Deo Publishing, 2007.