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Showing posts from April, 2009

Parish AGM 2009

2 Corinthians 5:11-6:2 It has been a very busy last 12 months. We have celebrated the 150th anniversary of St Peter's, and we have had the CL mission. Not to mention the pantomime. One of the events that I found extremely helpful was Clive Paine's lecture on the history of St Peter's. The church was founded on the desire to further the mission of the church and the proclamation of the gospel. And the gospel has been preached at St Peter’s, and from St Peter’s for the last 150 years. And that has continued: which is why it was appropriate to have a mission in 2008 - to declare the historic truths on which St Peter's was established, but their continued to relevance to people today. And we need that. We live in a lost world. The economic foundations in which we put so much trust are being shaken. People do not know how to think or feel anymore. So many of us are controlled by fear. Lilly Allen: The Fear The passage that I have chosen for this evening is from 2 Corinthians

Easter Sunday 2009

2 Corinthians 5:14-6:2 Easter Sunday 2009 Happy Easter: Christ is risen! So what? John tells us that John goes into the empty tomb, and that - although he does not yet realise that the scripture talks of Jesus' resurrection - he believes. And then it tells us that he and the others 'go home'. The most significant event in human history has just happened in front of their noses, and the disciples look at it and go home. I guess that they need time to work out the implications of what has just happened. And I also think that John is making the point that the event on its own will not change anyone. The thing that changes people is the coming of the Holy Spirit. But Paul, writing between 15 and 30 years after the event has had time to think - and he is writing to the Corinthian Christians urging them to live in the light of the resurrection. And for Paul in these verses, it comes down to how we view other people. V16 is key: So from now on we regard no-one from a worldly point

Father, into your hands I commit my Spirit.

Good Friday 2009 Luke 23:46 [the final of seven meditations on the Seven last words of Jesus on the Cross] And so we come to the end. Jesus died as he lived. The phrase, 'Into your hands I commit my Spirit' is a phrase that comes in Psalm 31. It was a Psalm that Jesus would have known well and would have prayed many times. The words would have sunk right into him, and become a part of his language and of his thinking – and so now, right at the end of his life, words that he has prayed so many times come through the pain into his mind. Just as an aside, there really is a value in soaking ourselves in Scripture - in speaking verses and re-speaking them; in learning verses and re-learning them. In one convent where they recited the entire Psalter every week, someone asked one of the nuns, 'But isn't that boring'. She replied, 'Of course it is boring. But that is not the point'. The point is in letting the Word of God go deep within us, to live deep within us –


Gentleness Opposite of violent - cf 1 Tim 3.3, 1 Cor 4.21, and it is the opposite of self-assertion Not a great quality today: don't see it with in the Apprentice; it is not recommended as the way to get on in business or in life. But gentleness is not weakness. It is very close to meekness Paul writes, 'by the meekness and gentleness of Christ' (2 Corinthians 10:1) AND IF WE LOOK AT JESUS WE SEE WHAT THAT MEANS Jesus says: Matthew 11:29 – 'Come to me all you who are weary and heavy laden…' And we see how he rides into Jerusalem on a donkey (Matthew 11:29) He is making a very political statement. But John explains this in John 12:12-16. The 'great crowd' (this is the crowd that wanted to make him King in John 6) are now acclaiming him as Messiah. Jesus does not refuse their acclamation. Instead he finds a donkey and sits on it. In other words he is saying, 'I am King, but I am coming not as a warrior, but in peace'). Someone said, 'People want t