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Third Sunday after Pentecost
Sermon and Worship Resourcesx

"Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword."   Matthew 10:34

Texts & Discussion:
Genesis 21:8-21
Psalm 69:7-10,  16-18
Romans 6:1b-11
Matthew 10:24-39


This Week's Themes:
Human Failure and God's Providence
Salvation History
The Cost of Discipleship


Prayer of Discipleship

God of Love and Grace, you have called us into radical discipleship in the name of your son Jesus.  To you alone belong all of our heart and our devotion. You freed us from the burden of sin and by your Spirit enabled us to serve you and our neighbor. Help us, we pray, to continue in our commitment to you.  Empower us to always seek your Kingdom first.

Teach us to pray for our brothers and sisters aright; that we be so consumed in love for them that we may feel their needs as much as our own. Enable us to give as freely as we have received from you so that the name of our Lord Jesus be glorified.   Amen.



Children's Messages:


Sermon Excerpt:

Taking Up the Sword of Justice
based on Mat 10:24-39
by Rev. Frank Schaefer

Surely, Jesus words take us by surprise this morning, when he says: "Do not think I have come to bring peace on earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother . . . and our enemies will be members of our own household."

Whoa! This does not make for a good passage for Sunday school, does it? Don't these words of Jesus stand in direct opposition to some of his other words, like: "blessed are the peace-makers for they shall be called children of God?"

Just a couple of weeks ago in our Sunday school lesson, we talked about the passage where it says: "if you approach the altar and you remember that a brother has something against you, go first and make peace with him, and then come and bring your sacrifices?"  So, what about that, what about trying to resolve our conflicts in a civilized manner? What about being mediators?

In order to resolve this seeming paradox, we need to understand the historic background of Matthew's community. It seems likely that this controversial saying by Jesus was included in the Matthean community because a conversion to Christianity meant that  you faced severe persecution, and often at the hands of  family members.

So how exactly would these belligerent words of Jesus have given encouragement to the persecuted Matthean community?....

click here for the full sermon manuscript.