The Comfortable Words

Rev. David Bast

READ : Matthew 11:28-30 Listen today to some of the most comfortable words ever spoken — not comfortable as in “soft” or “easy;” comfortable as in “full of comfort.” The communion service in the old Book of Common Prayer calls the worshiper to confess his sins to Almighty God before coming to receive the sacrament. Then following the prayer of confession the minister pronounces words of assurance that our sins are forgiven for Jesus’ sake. The biblical texts proclaiming forgiveness …

John the Baptist

Rev. David Bast

READ : Matthew 11:39 Have you ever wondered whether Jesus really is who he’s said to be? You’re not the first to have doubts. The man we call John the Baptist had a unique role to play in the kingdom of God. He was a bridge figure, whose ministry straddled the two testaments and owed something to each of them. John was the last of the Old Testament prophets. He was the fiery preacher of righteousness who minced no words …

Losers Keepers, Finders Weepers

Rev. David Bast

READ : Matthew 10:39 Do you know the saying, “Finders keepers, losers weepers”? When it comes to your most important possession, your own life, Jesus turns it on its head. Have you ever heard the little rhyme that goes, “Finders keepers, losers weepers”? We used to say that sometimes when we were kids, sort of as a taunt. Someone would accidentally drop a quarter, say. Someone else would suddenly spot it on the ground, swoop down, and scoop it up. …

Hard Sayings

Rev. David Bast

READ : Matthew 10:34-38 Some things that Jesus said are hard to understand; others are hard to accept and follow. But everything he said is important! If he had never done anything else in his life, Jesus of Nazareth would still be remembered as one of the world’s great souls for the sake of his sayings alone. Think of some of the memorable things he said, statements that are part of the religious heritage of western civilization and have shaped …

Trouble Ahead

Rev. David Bast

READ : Matthew 10:16-33 When Jesus sends his followers out into the world with the gospel he warns us that it could be dangerous. But don’t worry. Everything turns out well in the end. In Matthew 10 Jesus has been giving his followers some instructions about the mission he is sending them out to fulfill. Jesus has called his twelve disciples to himself and given them special authority as his apostles, his missionaries, or “Sent Ones.” He next explains to …

Disciples and Apostles

Rev. David Bast

READ : Matthew 10:1-15 Here’s a simple way of remembering what we are as Christians: followers of Jesus are called disciples, or “learners.” And disciples are called apostles, or missionaries. Years ago when my kids were small, they came home from Sunday school with a little song that helped them remember the names of Jesus' twelve disciples. (Actually, it's helped me do that too.) The words of the song went like this: There were twelve disciples Jesus called to help …