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? […]

I am with you always

Matthew 28:16-20 Over the next few weeks we’re going to be looking at some, mostly quite short, readings from Matthew’s Gospel. As I’ve said before, each of the four gospels has a very distinctive flavour that comes from the purpose and audience for which it was originally written.

Pentecost

John 20:19-23 What do you say after the resurrection?

Glorified by God

John 17:1-11 We have seen the Lord… glorified by God. Today is ascension Sunday, the week before Pentecost, when we are brought the story of Jesus, some weeks after the resurrection, returning to heaven – the last time that the physical, post-resurrection body of Jesus would be seen ‘in the flesh’, as it were. The […]

In the unknown God

Acts 17:22-31 We have seen the Lord. Over the past few weeks we’ve explored the ways in which the early Church saw the Lord, encountered, or experienced, the reality of the risen Jesus.

In difficult times

Acts 7:55-60 We have seen the Lord, this week, in difficult times. When I read this passage through when sat down to actually write this sermon I realised that I have always remembered the story wrongly. I mean, I guess its not one of the best known passages in the New Testament, but I thought […]

In the community of God’s people

Acts 2:42-47 When I arrived at Roseville, something over six years ago now, believe it or not, one of the first people that I met was a tall, well-presented lady, with the bearing of someone who had enjoyed a professional life. She introduced herself, and quite early on in our conversation she told me that […]

On the road out of town

Luke 24:13-35 In his sermon on the resurrection appearances to the disciples, in particular Thomas, last week, Stuart said – well, he said a lot of interesting things, actually, but the one which really struck me was drawing out that phrase, “we have seen the Lord”, and his exploration of the ways in which, even […]

Easter Sunday

Matthew 28:1-10 Just over fifty years ago the German theologian Jurgen Moltmann wrote one of the most influential books of theology of the twentieth century. Into an age in which the Christian faith had become closely identified with power, with triumph, with overcoming the foe – whether in the military conflicts of the wars from […]

Palm Sunday

Matthew 21:1-11 We all know the story – it’s one of the big spectacles of the Christian year. The triumphal entry, the palm branches cut down and lain across the road, Jesus riding in on a donkey, children shouting “Hosanna”. And we all know, as well, because we’ve read the end of the story, that […]