Each week, our Rector, Very Rev. James Karanja emails parishioners an introduction to the upcoming sermon. You will find these posted here. You will also find sermon summaries from our Associate Priest Rev. Dr. Nahum Beard. Please come join us each Sunday at 12:00p.m. (12-noon) for the rest of that week's sermon!
|Posted on February 17, 2018 at 6:15 PM||comments (0)|
First Sunday in Lent RCL 2018 'Fathers Blessing'
Mark 1:9-15 (Luke 3, 4 parallel)
In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. And just as he was coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on him. And a voice came from heaven, “You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.”And the Spirit immediately drove him out into the wilderness. He was in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan; and he was with the wild beasts; and the angels waited on him. Now after John was arrested, Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news.”
Baptism of Jesus: Jesus is the Way the truth and the life: In Jesus we are reconciled into a healthy relationship with The Father that is by and through the Spirit, There is no other way except by Him and in the Way he leads. Ref: Rom 8:29, 2 Cor 3:18
● He does this (submits to baptism) to show us the Way
● Reveals our essential need in the soul to be affirmed and loved by our heavenly Father
1:9 Repentance: Jesus does something unusual: submits in obedience to a baptism of repentance: he who has no sin
Demonstrates participation, fellowship with all humanity in brokenness and need. Shows us the way home in repentance and humility.
1:10 Life in The Spirit (giver of life): The Holy Spirit alights publicly on the one who has communed with Him from before time within the eternal Trinity:
● He is demonstrating the need of the Holy Spirit in our lives to empower a supernatural lifestyle.
● Demonstrates redeemed normative expectation/experience for humanity. “It is better for you that I go away or else the Advocate will not come...”John 16:7
1:11 Sonship: The eternal Word, The Son, The second person. Is named Son again
For our sake:
● That we might have knowledge of His identity,
● But also it is an invitation to follow him from our orphan state to be redeemed into that identity
● Need: even the Perfect Man, Sinless with unbroken communion with His Father by the Spirit needs to receive the Father’s blessing--how much more us
● “Do not confuse a need with a problem…” Fr. Russ Parker
1:12-15 Walking in Repentance, Sonship, and by/through a relationship with the Holy Spirit is How we are filled with power (Luke 4:14) to Fulfill our Need, Stand against Temptation, and Fulfill our Mission.
Rev. Dr. Nahum Beard
|Posted on February 17, 2018 at 10:00 AM||comments (0)|
GOD'S BOW OF PROTECTION
Sunday February 18 is the first Sunday in Lent.
As we join our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in his sufferings let us remember that God has set a bow of protection over his people. In Genesis 9:13-16 we read: “I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth..... Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy life. Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth". God has set the blood of Jesus as the rainbow of our protection. Whenever God sees the blood of Jesus on our faces he remembers his everlasting covenant to save us. Therefore, no matter what trials and temptations Satan brings we are protected by the blood of Jesus. We read in Revelation 12:11 "And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony...." The Blood of Jesus is God's rainbow of our protection.
Is your life covered by the Blood of Jesus? Please, call upon Jesus for your life coverage.
Fr. James Karanja
|Posted on February 10, 2018 at 3:30 PM||comments (0)|
Sunday February 11, 2018 is the last Sunday after Epiphany. Wednesday February 14 is the first day of Lent called Ash Wednesday. The service of Ash Wednesday starts at 7:00 pm. As we read in the Gospel of Mark 9:2-9 we find that Jesus is finally manifested as the Son of God. The whole purpose of the Bible from the law of Moses, the prophets and the New Testament is to manifest Jesus as the Son of God. When the disciples were on the mountain with Jesus they saw Moses and Elijah. Then a cloud came and covered them and they saw no one else except Jesus. A voice came from heaven and said, "This is my Son, whom I love. Listen to him" (Mark 9:7). The disciples were left with Jesus alone. Jesus is the only one whom God has given to satisfy our needs. Does Jesus satisfy all your needs? Call upon him now and he will meet all your needs. In Acts 4:12 we read: "Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved".
Fr. James Karanja
|Posted on February 3, 2018 at 9:25 PM||comments (0)|
JESUS HEALS ALL DISEASES
Sunday February 4, 2018 is the fifth Sunday after the Epiphany. On this Sunday Jesus is manifested as God who heals all diseases. In Mark 1:30-34 we read, "Simon's mother-in-law was in bed with a fever, and they immediately told Jesus about her. 31 So he went up to her, took her hand and helped her up. The fever left her and she began to wait on them. 32 That evening after sunset the people brought to Jesus all the sick and demon possessed. 33.The whole town gathered at the door, 34 and Jesus healed many who had various diseases. He also drove out many demons....."When Jesus was told about Simon's mother in-law he went and healed her at once. He also healed many who were sick and those who were possessed by demons. Jesus heals physical, mental, and spiritual diseases. He wants us to tell him about those who are sick so that he would go and heal them. Do you have a person who is sick? Tell Jesus about him or her. Psalm 103:2-3 says, "Praise the LORD, my soul, and forget not all his benefits, who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases." Let us tell Jesus about all our problems as he is able to heal all our diseases.
May God be with you and protect you with the precious blood of Jesus. In Christ Jesus our Lord.
Fr. James Karanja
|Posted on January 27, 2018 at 8:00 PM||comments (0)|
GOD IS IN CONTROL
Tomorrow is the fourth Sunday after the epiphany. The gospel reading of this Sunday manifests Jesus as being in control of spiritual forces. In Mark 1:23-26 We read: "Now there was a man in their synagogue with an unclean spirit. And he cried out, saying, "Let us alone! What have we to do with You, Jesus of Nazareth? Did you come to destroy us? I know who you are—the Holy One of God!" But Jesus rebuked him saying "Be quiet, and come out of him!''.....And the spirit came out of him. Jesus commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man and he came out of him immediately. Jesus is manifested as the Son of God who is in control of all spiritual forces. In Isaiah 43:1-3 God says to you: "Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned. Nor shall the flame scorch you. For I am the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, Your Savior." Therefore, let us only trust in God our Savior, Jesus Christ, and have no fear of any spiritual or physical forces as our God is in control over all spiritual and physical forces in heaven and earth.
May God bless you and protect you with the precious blood of Jesus.
Fr. James Karanja
|Posted on January 19, 2018 at 9:15 PM||comments (0)|
REPENT AND BELIEVE IN JESUS
Jesus says, "Repent and believe the good news" (Mark 1:15). Repentance in the Bible is turning away from sin and moving toward God. In Jonah 3:10 we read, "When God saw what they did and how they turned from their evil ways, he relented and did not bring on them the destruction he had threatened. When the people of Nineveh turned away from their sins God forgave them and did not punish them". We read in Ezekiel 18:32, "For I take no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Sovereign LORD. Repent and live." Believing the good news means believing in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior. No matter what kind of sins we have committed, if we repent and believe in Jesus God is willing to forgive us and to save us from all our sins. St. Peter says in Acts 3:19: "Repent then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out...."
Let us always repent and believe in Jesus to save us daily by His grace.
May God bless you exceedingly. In Christ Jesus our Lord.
Fr. James Karanja
|Posted on January 12, 2018 at 6:55 PM||comments (0)|
This Sunday is the second Sunday after Epiphany. Epiphany means manifestation or making oneself known. During the Season of Epiphany we celebrate manifestation of God to his people. God is manifesting His Son Jesus to His people.
WHO IS JESUS?
In Hebrew language every name has a meaning. The name Jesus comes from the Hebrew name 'Yehoshuah' or Joshua in English. 'Yehoshua' means Yahweh (God) is salvation or Yawheh saves. As we read in Mathew 1:21 the angel of God said to Joseph, "She will give birth to a son and you are to give him the name Jesus because he will save his people from their sins." Therefore, Jesus means God who saves his people from their sins. In John 1:49 God manifested Jesus as the Son of God to Nathanael and Nathanael declared saying, "Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!" God manifested to Nathanael that Jesus was the Son of God. Nathanael had an epiphany of God the Son. Many people today know Jesus as the Rabbi or great teacher but do not believe in him as God our Savior and the Son of God.
Do you believe in Jesus as God our Savior and the Son of God? May God bless you and manifest Jesus as God our Savior and the Son of God day by day.
Keep warm in the Lord God and our Savior, Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
Fr. James Kibe Karanja
|Posted on January 6, 2018 at 3:35 PM||comments (0)|
LET THERE BE LIGHT
At the beginning of creation God said, “Let there be light, and there was light" (Genesis 1:3). Light casts out darkness. God wants us to walk in his light this new year without fear or worry of any darkness of life. God has sent his Son Jesus Christ to give us that light. We read in John 1:4-5 "In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in darkness, and darkness has not overcome it." As long as we believe in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior and live in him no darkness can overcome us this year. Have you committed your life to Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior this year? You can always do so by praying to him saying, "Lord Jesus, I believe in you as my Lord and Savior. Please, come into my heart and cast out all darkness of fear and worries about my future, as I trust in you as my good Shepherd and refuge of my life. Amen".
May God bless you exceedingly.
In Jesus Christ our Lord.
Fr. James Kibe Karanja.
|Posted on December 30, 2017 at 4:35 PM||comments (0)|
THE CHILDREN OF GOD
Who are the children of God? All people belong to God. Therefore, all people are God's people. But are all people God's children? We read in John 1:11-12, "He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave right to become children of God". Only those who believe in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior become Children of God. The ones who receive Jesus become children of God and heirs of God's kingdom. As children of God we are heirs of God (Galatians 4:7). If you have not yet received Jesus as your Lord and Savior you can ask him to come into your heart now by saying: "Lord Jesus I believe you are my Lord and Savior. Come into my heart now and make me a child of God. Amen".
WISHING YOU A BLESSED HAPPY NEW YEAR: 2018
Fr. James Karanja
|Posted on December 24, 2017 at 12:40 AM||comments (0)|
GOD'S GIFT FOR THE WORLD
During Christmas people all over the world give gifts of different kinds to their family and friends. What is God's gift for the whole world? We read in John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." God has given us only one Gift and that gift is His only begotten Son Jesus Christ. Have you ever received God's gift? The angel of the Lord proclaimed the birth of Jesus and said to the shepherds: "Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord" (Luke 2:10). Jesus is God's gift to people of all nations whether black or white, rich or poor, great or small. We read in John 1:11-12 "He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him. But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name." Jesus is the only one who can make us God's children and help us to live in love, peace, and unity. Jesus is God's gift for you this Christmas. You can receive Jesus by opening your heart to Him and you will enjoy this Christmas with Him.
Fr. James Karanja