Hebrews 1:4-14 Thinking about angels

Hebrews 1

Today we celebrate St Michael and All Angels
And, based on our reading from Hebrews 1, we’re going to think about angels

1. The angels worship the Son of God
v5: ‘For to which of the angels did God ever say, ‘You are my Son’ .. and again, ‘Let all God’s angels worship him’
Last week we read from Isaiah 6, where angels worship God and proclaim: ‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory’
Or we think of the joy of the angels as they praise God, when Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is born: ‘Glory to God in the highest heaven and on earth peace among those whom he favours’ (Luke 2:14)
And John, in the book of Revelation, as he glimpses that world – that new creation - which is already there, beyond space and time, ‘hears the voice of many angels surrounding the throne and the living creatures and the elders; they numbered myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands, singing with full voice: ‘Worthy is the Lamb that was slaughtered to receive p…

Luke 15:1-11 The God who searches for us

Luke 15:1-11

This is a passage for me I lose everything. If it was possible to lose your head, I would lose my head.
You could reword the second of these stories: not ‘there was a widow who lost a coin’, but there was a chaplain who lost his passport ..
I think I get it from my mother. She told me that on one occasion she left me in the pram outside a shop in the village where we lived She came out of the shop and walked home. It was only when she got home that she realised something was missing.

There is a verse where God asks, ‘Can a woman forget her child’, to which the answer in my mother’s case is very definitely yes! The good news for all of us forgotten babies is that the verse continues: “Even these may forget, yet I will not forget you.” (Isaiah 49:15)
So what does this passage tell us about God?
1. We belong to God and he misses us.
You know that you belong, someone said, when they miss you if you are not there.
The sheep belongs to the shepherd, and the shepherd notices that he h…

Luke 14.25-33 Why does Jesus say that I have to hate my family?

Luke 14:25-33

Who or what is the foundation of your life? Who or what do you trust in, live for?
1. Family usually comes pretty high on people’s list of priorities Parents, partner, children, brothers and sisters It is your human family who give you your name, your sense of identity, your meaning. They can be the ones who believe in you, support you in time of trouble. They can give you purpose and drive: you do things – usually subconsciously – to make your parents proud of you, or for your husband or wife, or for your children.
It is our family who give us our values, who shape how we see the world - and even if we rebel against our family and their values, it specifically your own family that you rebel against.  And if your experience of family is not happy, often that drives you to make your own family very different.
2. Possessions We live for money and the things that money can buy. That is what gives you purpose, what gets you out of bed each day: do the trudge to the metro: you are go…

Hebrews 11.29-12.2 Heroes of the Faith (2)

Hebrews 11:29-12:2

We need each other
We also need men and women of faith from the past.

1.They are our inspiration
They are described here as a ‘host of witnesses’ (12.1)
I am not a runner. Run and fun are not two words that I put together. I think people who run for fun are crazy. And I am astonished to discover that there are even people who claim to enjoy running marathons. But I am told that when you do run a marathon, you are usually dead at about the 25 mile mark. But something strange then happen. For the last mile or so, as the crowds increase, and as you hear them urge you on, you come alive again. It is what gets you over the finish line.
Well, the men and women who are described here in Hebrews 11 are our crowd. They are cheering us, urging us on as we get toward the finishing line of the Christian life. And they know what it is all about, because they already have run and completed the race.
If you go into one of the Kremlin churches you will see in front of you a wall on whi…

Hebrews 11:1-16 Heroes of the Faith (1)

Hebrews 11:1-3,8-16

This is a great chapter.  It is a hymn to all the men and women of faith in the Old Testament, and an encouragement to faith. But not just faith in itself
Yes, the chapter does begin with a general definition of faith: ‘Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen’.
We all live by faith, even atheists – whether that is sitting down on a chair or agreeing to meet someone for coffee.
But faith in itself is not enough.
There is the song: ‘any dream will do’. Actually, it won’t! Some dreams are disastrous. And in the same way, there is the assumption that what is important is that you have faith: and ‘any faith will do’.
But faith can be in good things and bad things, in true things or false things. The story is told of a young man who was climbing a skyscraper. He sees something that looks solid and has to let go of his hold in order to reach and grasp it. But he falls to his death. And they found him clasping in his hand a spiders web. What h…