Date: December 5, 2010
Liturgical Sunday: Advent 2
RCL Scripture: Psalm 72:1-7, 18-19; Isaiah 11:1-10; Romans 15:4-13; Matthew 3:1-12
Sermon Title: Peace
Knox Presbyterian [audio:https://wordsfromthemiddle.ca/wp-content/uploads/101205-Knox1.mp3|titles=Peace]
St. Mark’s Presbyterian [audio:https://wordsfromthemiddle.ca/wp-content/uploads/101205-St-Marks.mp3|titles=Peace]
This week’s sermon is on peace. In a sense there isn’t much to say about peace but our Lectionary texts give us the opportunity to reflect carefully on the reality that peace without justice is a sham and a cheat. I hope you will find some things of value in one or both of these sermons. As is frequently the case, but by no means always, the St. Mark’s sermon is both longer and somewhat more focused (if that is not a paradox) due to working out some of the ideas on the good people of Knox. I’m looking forward to any and all comments on the coherence and value of this/these message(s).
I’ve had the opportunity to listen to these two sermons back to back and with no words spoken by anyone else in the middle. It’s fascinating to me to hear the ideas develop and crystallize/congeal/shimmer as you preach. The work of peace and hope in these days as a valid and essential call in our lives as follower of Jesus is compelling.
A curiosity — aside from the reference to growing up in a home with four boys and a lack of hitting not equaling peace, I’m not recalling any other personal anecdotes or illustrations. I don’t have a tally sheet, but I have the sense that frequently you paint more stories than you did “today.”
Thanks again for sharing.
Jennifer, you are correct when you note that there isn’t as much of “me” in this week as usual. I am not entirely sure why not, I certainly don’t shy away from bringing myself into sermons. If you have the time, the first sermon(s) posted “Who owes whom?” has quite a bit more of me than this one.
Personal illustrations are always problematic if they involve anyone beyond “you and you alone.” You always need to be sensitive to the reality that not everyone wants to be used as a sermon illustration, not even as a positive illustration.
I am in the process of listening to this pair of sermons and I am noticing how much of me ISN”T in the sermon but I still think it is of value . . . but of course I’d say that. My own biases notwithstanding, I think I’ve actually got a hold of something very important in these sermons and I’d like to thank Jennifer for gently nudging me to listen to them.
I too listened to them back to back and appreciated the progression of your thoughts about peace. I can’t remember hearing a sermon on just the subject of peace, so this was good food for thought. It’s beneficial to hear the same sermon (basically) twice because you usually pick up something the second time around that didn’t grab you on the first. So thank you. Good thoughts to carry through my day. The one I hadn’t heard or thought of before was, “Peace without justice is a sham.”
I wish I could say that I had carefully thought the whole issue through and after much mediation came up with that line but I can’t, it just came to me in the midst of preaching. It is certainly a coalescing of years of thinking off and on about peace and justice but having it come together that way was a bit of a surprise.
After all that, I don’t think that the line is original to me, so perhaps I dredged it up from my subconscious. I just googled it and it doesn’t seem to be out there in that exact phraseology. I found several citations for “no peace without justice” which is sort of the same . . . maybe I did coin a phrase after all.