Difficult Questions

/Tag:Difficult Questions
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July 2018

“Why Are We Here?” Rev. Rodger Allen 7-1-18 Mark 6: 1-2, Psalm 100

By |July 5th, 2018|Sermons|

  It’s important for you to know, as we begin today, that much of the material in today’s sermon comes from a sermon written by the Rev. William Willimon, and printed in the magazine “Pulpit Resources.” I tell you that first because I feel strongly that preachers should always give proper credit when they use the words or ideas of someone else, so I always tell you if I’m doing that. But it’s especially important to understand that today because there are parts of the message today that people could conclude I wrote to refer to a particular issue or group of people at Paris Presbyterian Church; that I was trying to influence our direction somehow. This introduction lets you know I didn’t do that; this is not directed at anyone or anything in particular, here. As far as I know, Rev. Willimon’s never even been to Paris Presbyterian Church, so he couldn’t possibly have been writing about us. No, his remarks reflect a situation found in many, many churches, of many different denominations, all over the country. This isn’t personal.  […]

April 2018

“Mark’s Jesus: 5. The Savior” Rev. Rodger Allen Selected verses from Mark 11, 12, 14, & 15; Psalm 118: 23-28; Isaiah 53: 3-6 3-25-18

By |April 11th, 2018|Sermons|

  For several weeks  we’ve been looking at the gospel-writer Mark’s description of Jesus; his impressions of Jesus as Teacher, as Healer, as Includer, as Reformer. Today we’re going to combine Mark’s description with that of an imaginary disciple, who we’ll name Isaac. Now Isaac, the way we’re imagining him, was not one of the twelve central disciples. He’s better described as one of the “fringe” disciples—with Jesus sometimes, but not at others; being interested, but not totally committed; still fence-sitting, in a way, as to whether he believes all this talk about Jesus being the Messiah. Isaac, we’re going to suppose, kept a diary, and today we’ll read excerpts from the Gospel of Mark, and excerpts from the imaginary fringe-disciple Isaac’s diary. […]

March 2018

“Mark’s Jesus: 4. The Reformer” Rev. Rodger Allen/Mk. 7:1-23; Isaiah 1:11-17; Amos 5:21-24/3-18-18

By |March 26th, 2018|Sermons|

It’s difficult,  at least for those of us who have looked into church history at all, to think of the word “reform” without thinking of the capital-R “Reformation,” that 16th-century movement initiated by Martin Luther and a few others which resulted in the birth of the Protestant Church. Many of you have heard the story: [...]

February 2018

“About Stumblers/For Stumblers”/ I Corinthians 8: 1-13/Hebrews 5:11-6:1b/Rev. Rodger Allen/1-21-18

By |February 21st, 2018|Sermons|

The book of I Corinthians is a letter, written by the Apostle Paul back to the new Christian church he had started in the city of Corinth. In much of it, Paul is responding to questions the new Christians of Corinth had written to him: “OK, Paul, you’ve moved on, and now certain situations have come up here that we’re not sure how to handle; how do we deal with these things?” So Paul writes back and advises them. One of the questions they have asked has to do with the large number of temples to other gods in the city of Corinth. The new Christians knew, of course, that there’s only one true God, and that they’re not to participate in the worship of any other, false gods. Their question was: If you to the market and buy and eat meat that came from an animal that had been offered as a sacrifice to one of those false gods at one of those other temples, does that count as “participating in the worship” of that false god? Because that animal meat had been associated with false worship, should it be avoided by a faithful Christian? […]

June 2017

“No Marionettes Here!” 6/25/17 Scripture: Romans 6:1b-11; 1 Corinthians 3:1-9, 11 by Rev. Laurie Williams

By |June 26th, 2017|Sermons|

            I have pondered the topic for my sermon for this morning quite often, especially when some tragedy befalls my family, this town, our nation, or the entire world or when I feel God is pushing me in a way I don’t want to or feel competent to go.  The topic of my sermon this morning is partnership with God.  On several occasions, Rodger has heard me say, in response to something I hear or when we’re discussing peoples’ opinions concerning something, “We aren’t puppets”.  We do have free will to choose God or not, to follow the way Jesus Christ wants or not (even if we do say we believe in him,) to decide if we want to go the way God seems to want us to go or not. […]