A Message that can Change the World
Doesn’t it seem like life is too complicated? We constantly hear about “fake news” which makes it hard to know who to believe. More than 30,000 Christian denominations debate over one verse or a single word of Scripture. This makes it hard to know what to believe. So, it’s time to get Back to Basics.
It’s time to take a journey through Lent and be “Resolved to know nothing but Jesus Christ and him crucified,” and risen again (1 Corinthians 2:2). It’s time for the body of Christ to get back to basics. It’s time for the Church to be unified around a message that is not political. It’s time for us to believe that the only message that can change the world is, “He is Risen indeed. Hallelujah.”
March 1 | Adam’s Curse Reversed
Reading: Matthew 4:1-11 | Other Readings: Genesis 3:1-21; Romans 5:12-19
Have you ever felt like the scapegoat that kind of gets blamed for everything? Today we consider the role of Jesus as our scapegoat—not the one whom we blame but the One whom God has sent to us to take the blame for our sin upon Himself. This gift of a Savior who has borne the full weight of our sin is the reason we can stand amid test, trial, and temptation. We have more than someone to blame for the wrongs of thought, word, and deed that we do—we have a willing Savior who has become our sin offering to set us free through forgiveness and bring us back to Paradise.
March 8 | New Beginnings
Reading: John 3:1-17 | Other Readings: Genesis 12:1-9; Romans 4:1-8, 13-17
This is the Second Sunday in Lent and we are still early in our six-week journey walking with Jesus to the cross. Today we listen in on a conversation Jesus had with Nicodemus about the new birth from above that gives life to those born in sin. Wait, doesn’t that include all of us? We are reminded of our own baptismal birth to new life in Christ and of the call of God to die daily to sin and rise in Christ to the newness of life.
March 15 | Stop Looking at the Ground
Reading: John 4:5-26 | Other Readings: Exodus 17:1-7; Romans 5:1-8
On this 3rd Sunday in Lent, midway through our journey to the cross, we recall how God has fully satisfied His people with His grace alone. Sin can only be satisfied with what God alone provides. Our hunger and thirst for God and His salvation are met in Jesus Christ, the promised One, whose life, death, and resurrection freely bring us what we cannot provide for ourselves.
March 22 | Blind Silence
First Reading: Isaiah 42:18-22 | Second Reading: John 9:1-7 | Other Readings: Ephesians 5:8-14
Last week Jesus offered the water of life to a woman at a well (Jacob’s well, no less!). Today, He brings light to the darkness of a man born blind and with it teaches us something about spiritual blindness and the vision of faith.
March 29 | No More Dry Bones
Reading: Ezekiel 37:1-14 | Other Readings: Romans 8:1-11; John 11:17-27, 43-44
Long ago our Lord spoke to Ezekiel, of the day when the dry bones of death would give way to the power of life and resurrection. As that hope once sustained God’s people, so we are sustained in hope, and renewed for life’s journey until it leads us at last to our own joyful resurrection with Christ.
April 5 | Palm Sunday | Jesus’ Humility is a Model for Us
Reading: John 12:12-19 | Other Readings: Isaiah 50:4-9a; Philippians 2:5-11
While we may think of “Hosanna” being a word of praise or even a “Hooray,” the word actually means, “Save us, Lord.” As Jesus set His face to go to the cross of His death, He was answering that “Hosanna,” “Save us, Lord.” As the Suffering Servant who dies for His people, Jesus IS the fulfillment of God’s promise. As recipients of Christ’s forgiveness, we read the words of the various groups of people involved in His Passion—including those who praised Him and those who ridiculed Him; both you and me!
April 12 | Easter | He is Risen
Reading: Matthew 28:1-10 | Other Readings: Jeremiah 31:1-6; Colossians 3:1-4
He is Risen, Indeed, Alleluia! Those are such magical words that we have not heard since the Sunday before our journey began on Ash Wednesday. Today we let those words ring loudly as our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ has defied sin, death, and the devil. There is no greater day nor greater celebration in the Church year than Easter, as this is the day that Jesus reminds us how much He loves us, and the lengths He will go to have a righteous relationship with us; yes, even you! He is Risen. He is Risen, Indeed, Alleluia!