Sermon Topic Celebration
Sermon Week Second Sunday of Lent
Scripture Summary Matthew 17:5
Many mythical years ago, word went out that within sixty days, the southern tip of Florida was about to fall away and be covered by fifty feet of water. What to do? The scientists and the engineers and the politicians were completely baffled. The mayor of one small community decided to call together all the religious leaders in the threatened area. "You must tell us how to respond to this impending 'Act of God,'" he challenged them. One leader said piously: "The solution is prayer. We must pray." Another suggested that a study committee be appointed. Still another thought that evacuation was the only answer. The most learned philosopher in the group merely said, "What will be, will be." Finally, one of the persons serving coffee spoke up. "Find out how to live under fifty feet of water!" she said. Of course! "How to live!"...
Under fifty feet of water,
above fifty feet of water,
How to live! The practical dimensions of our Faith must deal with this, day-by-challenging-day.
We recall the Creation Story in the Book of Genesis -- how it moves, day-by-poetic-day, with God imagining and designing and creating something wonderful and exciting and hopeful. And at the end of each day's creative work, God celebrates. "Look at that! Isn't it gorgeous! Take a look!," He calls out to a nearby angel.
Of course, the actual poetry in the Bible merely understates: AND GOD SAW THAT IT WAS GOOD!
And then, at the end of the story, when God looks out on the entire range of things, the poetry still understates: GOD SAW EVERYTHING HE HAD MADE AND IT WAS VERY GOOD!
Later, in the Old Testament, in the Book of Job, another Biblical writer gets slightly more daring, saying that in the midst of all God's creative activity, "The morning stars sang together, and all the angels of God shouted for joy" (Job 38:7). We are part of that! And we can celebrate it! "Even though death is at work in us, life is in us," the Apostle Paul says. And nothing -- no thing, no body, [...]