Sermons

Getting Ready (December 9, 2018)

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Sermon December 9, 2018: Getting Ready Reverend Mark Longhurst Luke 3:1-6 Getting ready is gleeful, is it not? Who didn’t have a marvelous time at the holiday walk? Who doesn’t break into a smile after watching reindogs-dogs dressed as reindeer-parade down Spring Street? Even the most secular of us are still stirred by Lessons and Continue reading …

Contemplative Worship (December 2, 2018)

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Sermon December 2, 2018: Contemplative Worship Reverend Mark Longhurst Luke 21:25-36 Advent starts the beginning of the liturgical year, the season in which we anticipate Christ’s coming. Advent always starts off with a bang, with a dramatic passage about Christ’s so-called Second Coming. From a contemplative perspective, though, the emphasis is always on Christ’s arrival Continue reading …

When Power Replaces Truth (November 25, 2018)

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Sermon November 25, 2018: When Power Replaces Truth Reverend Mark Longhurst John 18:33-38 Pilate’s question may be authentic. He may really want to know, “What is truth?” Perhaps this Roman governor faces a philosophical dilemma; Jesus’s presence causes him to stare into the existential abyss and ask “What is truth?” Or, what’s more likely, given Continue reading …

Thanksgiving-A Festival Holiday (November 18, 2018)

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Sermon November 18, 2018: Thanksgiving-A Festival Holiday Reverend Mark Longhurst Deuteronomy 16:13-15 There Moses stands, in the riveting (once you get to know it) Book of Deuteronomy, at the threshold of the Promised Land. It’s Moses’s last will and testament, framed by editors as this liberation leader’s goodbye speech to the Israelites. The great tragedy Continue reading …

Full of Grace and Truth (November 11, 2018)

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Sermon November 11, 2018: Full of Grace and Truth Reverend Mark Longhurst John 1:9-14 Brothers and sisters: The universe is trustworthy! How’s that for a grand post-election claim? And I don’t mean that the universe delivers our personal candidates to office, because the arc of divine justice or righteousness is longer than an election cycle. Continue reading …

The Earth Is the Lord’s (November 4, 2018)

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Sermon November 4, 2018: The Earth is the Lord’s Reverend Mark Longhurst Psalm 24:1-6 The earth is the Lord’s…it’s not ours to wreck, says the Psalm implicitly, says the 2017 UCC General Synod Resolution of Witness explicitly. I had the honor of attending the national gathering of our denomination, the United Church of Christ, in Continue reading …

Sins of the Fathers (October 28, 2018)

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Sermon October 28, 2018: Sins of the Fathers Reverend Mark Longhurst Jeremiah 32:17-23 “Sins of the fathers” is an idea that’s very Old Testament, or least 17 century Congregationalist. Jeremiah prays to God in our passage today, and it’s a prayer fundamentally, of hope. But there’s this line there that straddles the paradox of God’s Continue reading …

Duty and Grace (October 14, 2018)

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Sermon October 14, 2018: Duty and Grace Reverend Mark Longhurst Luke 19:1-10 We’re suffering these days from a gratitude deficit. Many of us are worried and angry about the state of our country; we’re certainly not feeling grateful. If anything, we’re collectively boiling with rage. 2/3 of Americans are reporting more stress due to political Continue reading …

Ask the Animals (October 7, 2018)

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Sermon October 7, 2018: Ask the Animals Reverend Mark Longhurst Job 12:7-12; 39: 1-4, 26-27 It’s not right. Job did not have a serious drinking history. Job did not serious allegations hanging over him. Job, for all we know, treated women with respect. Job worshiped God, and he told the truth, so much so that Continue reading …

A House for All People (September 30, 2018)

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Sermon September 30, 2018: A House for All People Reverend Mark Longhurst Judges 56:1-8 I’d like to you a story today. It’s a story about an Empire. It’s a story of an oppressed people, and it’s a story about a culture in conflict due to ethnic, gender and sexuality, and religious identity concerns. It could Continue reading …