For all the saints

Ephesians 1:11-16 | Romans 14:7-9 When you read the New Testament, especially the letters, there are places where it’s clear that the early Church was expecting Jesus to return – and that they were expecting it to happen soon. And part of that expectation was that on his return he would usher in the new […]

Pressing On

Philippians 3:4b-14 Two weeks ago we look at Philippians 2 in which we read the great hymn or poem of Jesus’ self-emptying:  “…though he was in the form of God,    did not regard equality with God    as something to be exploited, but emptied himself…”

Connections

Romans 12:4-8 Today we are celebrating connections – the ways in which we, as the Body of Christ in this part, connect with each other, care for each other, do life together as God’s people.

Philippians 2:1-13 Imitating Jesus’ humility. That’s the title for today. It’s the subheading for this passage in most Bibles, certainly most that I’ve seen. But they can be tricky things, those subheadings.

Reflecting on the Voice

Romans 12:9-20 | Luke 4:16-21 When I came to think about this service, reflecting on the Voice referrendum, I realised that the choice of Bible passage wasn’t going to be obvious. The Bible obviously has little to say, directly, about the wording of the Australian constitution, but that’s not really the problem: the real problem […]

To live is Christ

Philippians 1:21-30 Over the next few weeks we’re going to be looking at the letter to the Philippians, under the theme of “Growing towards the light”. That series is going to be mixed up a bit by some special services – reflecting on the Voice referendum and the issues of faith that raises, a special […]

Forgiveness

Matthew 18:21-35 It seems such a simple question. And, for that matter, a simple enough answer. The disciples have heard Jesus speak of forgiveness. And perhaps they’ve understood how their own deep need to be forgiven – by others, by themselves, and by God – finds an echo in the call to forgive one another. […]

On this rock

Matthew 16:13-20 It’s a deeply held truth in the Goringe household – and I know that we are not alone in this – that when a man becomes a father, he loses all ability to judge the quality of a joke. In my case, many of those jokes involve a play on words; I can’t […]

Even the dogs

Matthew 15:21-28 Of all the events in Jesus’ ministry, it might be that this is the encounter that leaves us most confused. He meets a gentile, a Canaanite woman, in desperate need of help for her afflicted daughter, and his response is first to ignore her – explicitly because of her race – and then, […]

Get out of the boat

Matthew 14:22-33 If you were here in the morning last week you’d have heard me read the story “Webster the Preacher Duck” to the kids. For those who didn’t – in the story Webster preaches an inspiring sermon to his duck congregation on God’s gift of wings, and their calling to flight. The congregation respond […]

Jonah

Jonah 3:10-4:11 | Matthew 20:1-16 I have this sort of love-hate relationship with the Jonah story. The problem with Jonah is that the moment you say the name, everyone with any sort of Sunday School background immediately pictures a whale. It’s like some sort of pavlovian response: Jonah – Whale. And probably not just the […]

A cup of water

Matthew 10:40-42 Today we come to the end of our “in a nutshell” series, digging into some of the memorable, pithy phrases with which Jesus’ words were liberally sprinkled. As I’ve been preparing these sermons, I’ve been reflecting a bit on the role that these phrases play in Jesus’ teaching. When I think about the […]

Many Sparrows

Matthew 10:24-31 Do not be afraid; you are of more value than many sparrows. Why sparrows?

Freely received, freely give

Matthew 10:8 This week I was invited to be part of an online discussion about the role of AI in education. So I thought I might start by sharing with you what ChatGPT made of this challenge – “write me a sermon on Matthew 9:35-10:8 in the context of refugees”. This is part of its […]

Mercy not Sacrifice

Matthew 9:9-13 Another of our bite-sized sayings from Jesus. Go and learn what this means, “I desire mercy, not sacrifice.” Words well known to those that Jesus addressed – the Pharisees would have recognised them as the punchline of the prophet Hosea’s lament in Hosea chapter 6: What shall I do with you, O Ephraim? […]