Wednesday, June 17, 2020

Sermon June 20-21, 2020

Title: Fear not! God loves you!
Text: Matt. 10: 5a, 21-33

Facebook live: Fear not! God loves you!

32 So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, 33 but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.

Today we acknowledge fathers.

Father’s Day 2020 is a bit different than ones I remember but 2020 is going to be that way for a number of things I suspect. Thinking of my dad and dads in general brings a smile to my face. I loved my dad and all he brought to my life. Dads are given a responsibility to serve and lead their families and in society as well but not all measure up to the calling they are given so you may or may not have the same joyful memories I do. It is for us to remember fathers this day, and maybe this is my own disclaimer:

Fathers are human and fathers are sinners and fathers fall short, but in Christ fathers are forgiven and on this Father’s Day may we all have the blessings of forgiveness given and received!

10 And he called to him his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every disease and every affliction. 2 The names of the twelve apostles are these: first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; 3 Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; 4 Simon the Zealot, and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.

These are the twelve that Jesus sent out, instructing them. But the bulk of our text today points to what await those who profess faith in Christ.

21 Brother will deliver brother over to death, and the father his child, and children will rise against parents and have them put to death, 22 and you will be hated by all for my name's sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved.

Sounds like 2020 doesn’t it? Unrest, trials, and difficult times, not the peaceful days we expect or want.

The work of those who were sent would not be fun or easy. Persecution would be part of the lot of those sent. Not only would the world hate them but so too their family, brother, father, children and so on. Christ says,

Have no fear of them … proclaim the truth!

28 And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.

Dot not … if you will, reject the working of the Holy Spirit, God’s work.

It is the only unpardonable sin. To deny the gift of faith and to whom that faith points … to Jesus Christ our Lord, is the sin to which there is no repentance; for to repent one must recognize our sin and the working of the Holy Spirit in us.

As fathers the responsibility is ours. Mother’s too have that responsibility but the family has been under attack for many years. Since the sexual revolution the focus of husband and wife, moms and dads, children brought up and nurtured in a loving family has been under attack.

Of course we as God’s people let temptation and sin draw us away from our spouse.

Unfaithfulness can lead to divorce, a broken family, a unrepentant heart and a falling away from God and faith in Christ. In years past the brokenness was covered by suits, forced smiles and church for many broken by sin.

Today, the brokenness is laid bare for all to see and at times embraced, at least by the world and the worldview of many. No more is Christ the way the truth and the life for those whose peace is found only in:

My way! My truth! And my life!

The persecution of those who proclaim the name of Christ is growing. It is and has been dangerous to those around the world. Most recently this month Pastor Emmanuel Bileya and his wife Juliana were shot and killed on their farm in Nigeria, she was pregnant and their eight other children are now orphans and without the care of their loving parents. The other children were staying with friends as it had been increasingly dangerous for the family.

Proclaiming Christ in our country too is being met with anger and only time will tell the extent of the persecution we all might feel.

So what do we who are Christians do in light of this hatred in the world? Well certainly we pray but we also need to be in the world though not of the world.


Dietrich Bonhoeffer said in a very poignant way as he was confronted with all that Hitler and the Third Reich were doing leading up to and including World War II.

“Silence in the face of evil is itself evil: God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.”

Dietrich Bonhoeffer

He continues in his book, The Cost of Discipleship:

“Costly grace is the gospel which must be sought again and again and again, the gift which must be asked for, the door at which a man must knock. Such grace is costly because it calls us to follow, and it is grace because it calls us to follow Jesus Christ. It is costly because it costs a man his life, and it is grace because it gives a man the only true life.

It is costly because it condemns sin, and [it is] grace because it justifies the sinner – [which is to make one righteous]. Above all, it is costly because it cost God the life of his Son: 'Ye were bought at a price’ and what has cost God much cannot be cheap for us. Above all, it is grace because God did not reckon his Son too dear a price to pay for our life, but delivered him up for us. Costly grace is the Incarnation of God.”

[God taking of our humanity so that by his work we might be reconciled to God]

Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship

It is the mission of the church as we learned to “Go and make disciples of all nations.” It is a mission of the Church at large, our own LC-MS, and we here at Peace Lutheran Church as well.

To make disciples, to proclaim Christ, to baptize and to teach;

It is a rough road, and a dangerous road. Many die along the way in doing the work of proclaiming the gospel. But Christ says,

29 Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. 30 But even the hairs of your head are all numbered. 31 Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.

Christ has promised that where he is you too will be also. He has a room prepared and the assurance of eternity for those who believe. He gives you and me the work to do with this promise:

12 “Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, John 14:12a

This should be comforting for brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers and all the children of God who have been called to faith.

In the name of the Father and on the Son + and of the Holy Spirit!


1 comment:

  1. Hello Pastor RST. It was a blessed to go through your blog post and a sermon on Father's Day. I have throughyly enjoyed your sermon in written form. I am also a Pastor from Mumbai, India. I am gld to stop by your profile on the blogger and the blogger. I love getting connected with the people of god arount the globe to be encouraged strengthened and praying for one another. I have been in the Pastoral ministry for last 41 yrs in this great city of Mumbai a city with a great contrast where richest of rich and the poorest of poor live. We also reach out to the poorest of poor with the love of Christ to brig healing to the brokenhetred. We also encourage young and the adults from the westt to come to Mumbai to work with us during their vacation time. We would love to have young people from your church come to Mumbai to work with us during their vacation time. I am sure they will have a life changing experience. Looking forward to hear from you very soon. God's richest blessigs on you your family and the ministry. My email id is :dhwankhede(at)gmail and my name is Diwakar Wankhede