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2nd Sunday after Epiphany
with resources for Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Remembrance

"And as he watched Jesus walk by, he exclaimed, "Look, here is the Lamb of God!"  - John 1:36

Texts & Discussion:
Isaiah 49:1-7
Psalm 40:1-11
1 Corinthians 1:1-9
John 1:29-42


This Week's Themes:
Elected &  Called by God
Revelation of Christ
God's Call to Service
Martin Luther King


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MLK Resources:

Children's Sermons:


Sermon Excerpt:


Taking a Hard Look
a sermon based on John 1:29-42
By Rev. Randy Quinn

A few years ago, our family stopped in Spokane while traveling the Midwest. We stayed with some friends who lived there. Rich had been the pastor of a church near us before moving to Spokane the summer before our vacation. So we had gotten to know this couple and I began to count Rich as one of my friends.

But on this visit I learned something about Rich that changed the way I interacted with him. Even Ronda noticed the difference. In our conversation, we realized for the first time that we had gone to the same seminary at the same time. We had the same professors, we had the same classmates, we had the same friends. We had seen some of the same things. We had experienced some of the same things. We had walked the same hallways. We had even taken some of the same classes. Strange thing, though, we don't remember ever meeting! In Spokane, when we made this mutual discovery, we began to share stories as if we had known each other our entire lives. And at the same time, we began to talk with one another as if we had never met.

I've spoken with couples who meet, date, and marry, and after many years of marriage still tell me that they don't really know each other very well. They are still discovering new things.

For many of us, coming to church and worshipping God, or coming to Sunday School and learning about God, has similar dynamics. There is a sense in which we are like John the Baptist who says he didn't recognize Jesus (v 31). John, the man that Luke tells us is a cousin of Jesus, doesn't recognize him for who he is. Not until his eyes are opened and he sees Jesus in a new way. We "see" him all around us -- in pictures, in words, in the lives of others -- yet we don't often recognize him. Sometimes we don't want to recognize him, but often we haven't opened our eyes.

As we were going into a store this week, I noticed a couple walking out. I wouldn't even remember that, had it not been for what I saw next. The manager of the store came running out of the store. His face said a lot. He had seen something suspicious and was coming to look more closely. He watched intently as this couple walked across the street and got into their car. I suspect the manager was making mental notes about their physical features -- size, color of their hair, and clothing -- but I also saw him write something down, probably the license plate of the car. Had he just watched them leave his store, as I was doing when we arrived, he wouldn't have seen these details. It took a different kind of look...Subscribers: click here for full manuscript and all resources for Epiphany+2


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