I have found this process incredibly challenging and invigorating. In a facebook conversation with a friend of mine commenting on a poster I had put on line adverting my next Sermon Series (on the Olivet Discourse) I commented ' I hope my preaching lives up to the advertising' my main hope is that in the midst of this exploring and wrestling with the Sermon on the Mount that people may encounter its author... Jesus in ways that would inspire and encourage them to 'follow him...by hearing his words and acting on them.
All the way through these series (I cut the Sermon on the Mount up to make it more accessible to my congregation) I have been motivated and challenged by a quote from Dietrich Bonhoeffer...
“The restoration of the church will surely come from a new kind of community, which will have nothing in common with the old but a life of uncompromising adherence to the Sermon on the Mount in imitation of Christ. I believe the time has come to rally people together for this.”
Jesus said come follow me: reflection on Matthew 4:17-25 . This is the message I preached when I was preaching for a call to St Peter's Presbyterian church Mt Wellington and it seemed logical and important to follow that on by looking at Jesus teaching on what it actually meant to be a follower.
Jesus Guide to Happiness... The Beattitudes
Blessed are the Poor in Spirit Matthew 5:1-3
Blessed are those who Mourn Matthew 5:4
Blessed are the Meek Matthew 5:5
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness Matthew 5:6
Blessed are the merciful Matthew 5:7
Blessed are the peacemakers Matthew 5:8 (note that the numbering in the series is out here this is due to the fact that I preached this sermon on ANZAC day here in New Zealand).
Blessed are the pure in heart Matthew 5:9
Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness sake Matthew 5:10-12
Salt and Light Matthew 5:13-16
Jesus, the law and us Matthew 5:17-20
Build bridges don't dig graves Matthew 5:21-26
Having an unadulterated Passion in a sex saturated society Matthew 5:27-30
Valuing marriage in a throw away society Matthew 5:30- 32
Having our Heart in our mouth:Courageous integrity in a world of hype and insincerity Matthew 5:33-37
Going the extra mile in a don't get mad get even world Matthew 5:37-42
Love your enemies in a friend/unfriend world Matthew 5:43-48
A journey beyond the mask to the heart of devotion Matthew 6:1-8, 16-18
A journey to the Father heart of God Matthew 6:9
A journey to change and transformation Matthew 6:9-15
A Journey of trust: Give us our daily bread Matthew 6:9-15
A journey of Trust; Trusting God with our failings and future Matthew 6:9-15
Jesus Economic... It's for the Birds Matthew 6:19-34
Eyeing up how to deal with each others faults and failings Matthew 7:1-6
I was in hospital having stents put in my the arteries round my heart and I was blessed to have Rev Margaret Liow stand in and preach on Matthew 7:7-12... Knock, ask Seek and the golden Rule. So alas there is no message on that passage as part of this series.
A Matrix Moment: The Narrow way and rebooting for kingdom living Matthew 7: 13-23
How solid is the ground on which we build? : hearing and doing Jesus words Matthew 7:24-28.