“Gentleness, Power and a Donkey” (Matthew 21:1-11; 2 Corinthians 10:1-11)  Palm Sunday March 25, 2018

Lenten Candle Extinguishing: (5 unlit, 1 purple & Christ candle lit)


L1:       Today is Palm Sunday, the sixth Sunday in Lent. We remember Jesus’ journey to Jerusalem. Each week the Light of the World diminishes.


L2:       For three years Jesus has engaged in actions with Jerusalem, yet now his hour draws near.


P:         The Temple was cleansed of moneychangers as Jesus made a whip of cords to drive them out, overturning tables. None laid a hand on him, for his hour had not yet come. 


L1:       By the Sheep Gate of Jerusalem a man laid on a mat, unable to get into the pool of Bethsaida. Jesus heals the man on the Sabbath, yet none laid a hand on him, for his hour had not yet come.


P:         At the festival of the Temple’s Dedication, Jesus is asked whether he’s the Messiah. He tells them, “The Father and I are one.” They wished to stone him for blasphemy, but none laid a hand on him, for his hour had not yet come.


L2:       Now, however, he has given his final sign: just outside of Jerusalem, in Bethany, he has raised Lazarus from the dead. Passover is approaching and the authorities fear such signs will prompt Roman reprisals, the destruction of both the Temple and the nation.


P:         Today Jesus throws pitch onto the fire by deliberately riding a donkey, a sign of kingship from ancient Israel. Crowds shout, “Hosanna! Blessed is the King of Israel!”


L1:       Yet by week’s end the crowds will shout to the Roman governor Pilate, “We have no king but the emperor!”


P:         And the light of the world will be extinguished.


L2:       (Leading unison prayer): Let us pray in one voice:


U:        The world has grown darker over these past six weeks. The hour had not yet drawn near when Jesus would be lifted up. Yet now that hour approaches, when the sun itself will be darkened, the curtain of the temple torn in two, the earth shake and rocks split. Our shadows will be there, too, darkening that light. (Extinguish candle). Forgive us, O God, in your great mercy. Amen.


L:         Let us sing, “Here Hangs a Man Discarded.”


Scripture (Matthew 21:1-11; 2 Corinthians 10:1-11)                     


Our first reading comes from the good news according to Matthew. 

1When Jesus and the disciples had come near Jerusalem and had reached Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples,
 2saying to them, ‘Go into the village ahead of you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her; untie them and bring them to me.
 3If anyone says anything to you, just say this, “The Lord needs them.” And he will send them immediately.’
 4This took place to fulfil what had been spoken through the prophet, saying,
5‘Tell the daughter of Zion, Look, your king is coming to you, humble, and mounted on a donkey, and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’
 6The disciples went and did as Jesus had directed them;
 7they brought the donkey and the colt, and put their cloaks on them, and he sat on them.
8A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road.
9The crowds that went ahead of him and that followed were shouting,
‘Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest heaven!’
 10When he entered Jerusalem, the whole city was in turmoil, asking, ‘Who is this?’
11The crowds were saying, ‘This is the prophet Jesus from Nazareth in Galilee.’

Our second reading comes from the second letter to the Corinthians.

1I myself, Paul, appeal to you by the meekness and gentleness of Christ—I who am humble when face to face with you, but bold towards you when I am away!—
 2I ask that when I am present I need not show boldness by daring to oppose those who think we are acting according to human standards.
 3Indeed, we live as human beings, but we do not wage war according to human standards;
 4for the weapons of our warfare are not merely human, but they have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments
 5and every proud obstacle raised up against the knowledge of God, and we take every thought captive to obey Christ.
6We are ready to punish every disobedience when your obedience is complete.
7Look at what is before your eyes. If you are confident that you belong to Christ, remind yourself of this, that just as you belong to Christ, so also do we.
 8Now, even if I boast a little too much of our authority, which the Lord gave for building you up and not for tearing you down, I will not be ashamed of it.
9I do not want to seem as though I am trying to frighten you with my letters.
10For they say, ‘His letters are weighty and strong, but his bodily presence is weak, and his speech contemptible.’
11Let such people understand that what we say by letter when absent, we will also do when present.

Here ends our readings. May God bless our  understanding.

@Copyrighted by Rev. Dr. Troy Sybrant Sermon: “Gentleness, Power and a Donkey” (Matthew 21:1-11; 2 Corinthians 10:1-11)  Palm Sunday March 25, 2018

“Gentleness, Power and a Donkey”

Sermon Video:

Sermon Slide click HERE


“Eating Humble Pie” (Luke 14:1, 7-14)  Sunday Nov. 26, 2017

Call to Worship     


L:         Come, let us worship and bow down!


P:         Let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!


L:         For the Lord is our God, lofty and glorious.


P:         Our God leads, teaches, and delivers the humble.


U:        God takes pleasure in such people, adorning them with victory.


Scripture (Luke 14:1, 7-14           


Our reading comes from the good news according to Luke. 

1On one occasion when Jesus was going to the house of a leader of the Pharisees to eat a meal on the sabbath, they were watching him closely.
 7When he noticed how the guests chose the places of honor, he told them a parable.
8“When you are invited by someone to a wedding banquet, do not sit down at the place of honor, in case someone more distinguished than you has been invited by your host;
 9and the host who invited both of you may come and say to you, ‘Give this person your place,’ and then in disgrace you would start to take the lowest place.
 10But when you are invited, go and sit down at the lowest place, so that when your host comes, he may say to you, ‘Friend, move up higher’; then you will be honored in the presence of all who sit at the table with you.
11For all who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”
 12He said also to the one who had invited him, “When you give a luncheon or a dinner, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors, in case they may invite you in return, and you would be repaid.
 13But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind.
14And you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you, for you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”

Here ends our reading. May God bless our understanding.

@Copyrighted by Rev. Dr. Troy Sybrant Sermon: “Eating Humble Pie” (Luke 14:1, 7-14)  Sunday Nov. 26, 2017

“Eating Humble Pie”

Sermon Video:

For Sermon Slides click HERE

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“Living Humbly and Generously” (Mark 12:38-44) Sunday August 13, 2017

Call to Worship 


L:         God dwells in the high and holy place.


P:         Yet God is also found with the contrite and humble in heart.


L:         Highest heaven cannot contain the Lord.


P:         Yet the fullness of God was found in the person of Jesus.


U:        Come, Holy Spirit, and fill our hearts, this place, and community!



(Mark 12:38-44)            


Our reading comes from the good news according to Mark.

38As Jesus taught, he said, “Beware of the scribes, who like to walk around in long robes, and to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces,
39and to have the best seats in the synagogues and places of honor at banquets!
 40They devour widows’ houses and for the sake of appearance say long prayers. They will receive the greater condemnation.”
41He sat down opposite the treasury, and watched the crowd putting money into the treasury. Many rich people put in large sums.
42A poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, which are worth a penny.
43Then he called his disciples and said to them, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all those who are contributing to the treasury.
44For all of them have contributed out of their abundance; but she out of her poverty has put in everything she had, all she had to live on.”

Here ends our reading. May God bless our understanding.

@Copyrighted by Rev Dr. Troy Sybrant Sermon: “Living Humbly and Generously” (Mark 12:38-44) Sunday August 13, 2017

“Living Humbly and Generously” 

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“Are You In or Out?” Luke 18:9-14, Sunday June 5, 2016


Luke 18:9-14

To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable: 10 “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector.11 The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’

13 “But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’

14 “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

@Copyrighted by Rev. Troy Sybrant Sermon: “Are You In or Out?” Luke 18:9-14, Sunday June 5, 2016

“Are You In or Out?”

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