September 2016

The Pursuit of Godliness - September 18, 2016

Pastor Eric Schroeder

Sermon text: 1 Timothy 6:6-16

“The pursuit of happiness…”  As American citizens, that sounds familiar.  Where does that expression come from?  Long before it was a movie title, “the pursuit of happiness” was a term that the founding fathers included in the Declaration of Independence as one of mankind’s inalienable rights, along with equality, life, and liberty.  They called all of these rights “self-evident truth.”  And yet in our nation today, less than 250 years since those words were written, what do you think is the main priority for the majority of Americans: life, liberty, or the pursuit of happiness?  Without getting too political, understand that the right to life no longer has the support of law, at least as far as the unborn child is concerned.  Liberty is always a question for some, and equality is still up for debate in many circles.  And so what remains?  Well, the individual pursuit of happiness is alive and well.  It always has been, and always will be. 

In Paul’s first letter to Timothy, the Apostle Paul is writing to his protégé, his assistant and travelling companion, who is now (at the time of this writing) the pastor of the church in Ephesus.  Up to this point in the letter, God has, through Paul, given divine guidance on the teachings of the church—especially the law and the gospel, instruction on worship in the church and workers in the church, instruction on oversight of the church and relationships within the church, especially those who need extra attention sometimes.  And now, as he nears the end of the letter, he closes with a caution and an encouragement that revolve around the pursuits of the church.  Let’s look again at these words. 

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That Which Unites Us - September 11, 2016

Pastor Leyrer

Sermon text: Luke 15:1-10

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Dear Friends in Christ, If you are 21 years of age or younger, you know it as an event in American history.  If you are older than that, you probably have a pretty good recollection of where you were 15 years ago today.  September 11, 2001, of course, was the day of the terrorist attacks that destroyed the twin towers in New York City.  In this age of instant media, we saw it happen right before our very eyes.  Approximately 3000 people lost their lives that day.  It was the biggest attack on American soil since the bombing of Pearl Harbor 60 years before. 

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Gain or Loss - September 4, 2016

Pastor Bitter

Sermon text: Philippians 3:4b-11

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What expectations do others have for you?  How is your life evaluated as a success or a failure by those on the outside?  Maybe the first place many people look is your career.  If you find something that you enjoy doing and that pays reasonably well – that’s success.   Or, maybe it’s the expectation that you will have the model home – like the ones seen on commercials where everything is clean and pretty and nice.  Or, maybe as a student, you think of the expectations your teachers have for you in the classroom, or the goals your coaches have for you in sports. 

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