Sunday, August 17, 2014

August 24, 2014 - 11th Sunday after Pentecost

Breaking Open the Scripture Scriptures for August 24th: Exodus 1:8-2:10; Psalm 124; Romans 12:1-8; Matthew 16:13-20; Theme: Using God’s Gifts: Song: I am Thine O Lord UMH 419 Romans: In chapters 9-11 we come to understand why we are saved. Now it is time for us to think about what we are to do with that salvation. What does it mean to live in Christ, and how do we change our lives so that we can do that? Romans is a very important book to our faith. It is the book that a lot of the church fathers used to develop official Christian theology. A lot of chapter 12 is used in our communion service. The early Christians gathered for a meal, just as the Jews gathered for a meal. That love meal eventually developed into the communion service. We are called to present our bodies as a living sacrifice. Christ is the sacrifice for us. Our lives are the sacrifice for Christ. The gifts that we have been given, are to use in ministry. Our forgiveness, is to help us to learn to forgive others. And to continue to prepare ourselves when all people will come and feast at God’s table. Matthew: What does it mean for Jesus to be the messiah? What does it mean for Christ to be your personal savior? Jesus is helping the disciples to not only understand what a savior is, but to understand that the savior is Jesus. So Jesus asks them who do people say that he is. The messiah is a spiritual definition. That is why he comes in the form of a person. We can relate to a person on many different levels. The disciples know he is the messiah because they have a personal relationship. We can follow their example in having our own relationship. And coming to realize what it means that Jesus is our savior. Jesus tells them not to tell anyone what they know. We all have to discover that for ourselves. The only way that we understand that Jesus us the messiah is in our personal lives, and our personal questions. Questions: How do you sacrifice your life to Christ? What gifts has God given your to use? What do your feel when you take communion? Is Christ present?

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