Sunday 26th July 2020
Call to worship: Psalm 100
Sing to the Lord, all the world!
Worship the Lord with joy;
Come before him with happy songs!
Acknowledge that the Lord is God.
He made us and we belong to him;
We are his people, we are his flock.
Enter the temple gates with thanksgiving,
Go into its courts with praise.
Give thanks to him and praise him. Amen
Song: Here I Am To Worship
Opening Prayer -Basha
Lord’s Prayer -Dylan
Song: When I’m Sixty Four
Gospel Reading- Matthew 13:31-33, 44-42.
in Punjabi -Vic
Song: Beauty for brokenness
Bible reading: Romans 8:26-39 -Becky
Song: Let Your Loving Spirit
Sermon: Rev Pat Nimmo
Matthew 13:31-33, 44-52, Romans 8 v26-39
Jesus used parables to convey Gods truth, particularly for people with ears that do not hear. These parables usually begin with the phrase "the kingdom of God or heaven is like....." It is within an environment of disbelief and opposition that Jesus used parables.
The phrase "the kingdom of God" or "the kingdom of heaven" to Jews, would have been highly charged. The kingdom of God is Jesus, the Jewish Messiah, establishing of the reign of God.
The seed is the word of God, the gospel. The parable is the gospel in riddle form (Heb. a masal), for those who reject a clear word from God.
The Mustard Seed is one of the smallest seeds you can sow. In the background of the story is Psalm 104 and Ezekial 17, Gods people finding shelter. The seed keeps on growing until it becomes so big that birds can perch in its shade, nest in it, live in it. It’s a picture of Gods world, a parable of sustainability. Our lives should be sustainable for us and all living things. It’s an eco-parable!
Great events have small beginnings. A thought, a word, a small action can multiply goodness and create Gods kingdom.
Jesus goes on to give other illustrations of what Gods world is like. It’s like yeast mixed in with flour. Note how he is being gender inclusive! It’s like a treasure that was hidden or buried. It’s like the Staffordshire hoard! It was buried in a field and a man found it! He covered it up to keep it a secret and went off and bought the field. He was very happy. Big lottery day! It’s like a collector looking for pearls. He found one very rare expensive pearl. He sold everything else he had and bought the one pearl. It’s like a fishing net. A dragnet is a casting net. A very long net with floats on one edge and weights on the other, that circles the fish and draws them in. It was operated from the shore. When it was full it was pulled up the fish onto the shore and they sat down to sort them into baskets, the good in one basket, the bad thrown away. Sorting the good from the bad.
Do you understood these things Jesus asked? Do we? The household of God is the whole earth. Be prepared to sell all you have for what is real treasure. Use what treasures you have to create goodness, the gospel, the reign of God in your life, the kingdom of heaven. In Romans 8 Paul is teaching us how we need to depend on Gods Spirit to enable us to be the people of goodness, Gods people. If we are focussed on being people who are good, just and true, things will work well for us. Who can separate us from the love of Christ?
Trouble, hardship, persecution, hunger, having no clothes, or danger? Christians will always have troubles but if we immerse ourselves in God it doesn’t touch us because we are at peace. Neither death nor demons, the present nor the future, nor anything will be able to separate us from God. So go and sow seeds of goodness, sell everything for Gods treasure, the pearl of great price and you will be at peace, You will find Gods peace.
Song: What A Friend We Have In Jesus
Prayers of Intercession/Healing: Claudette
Song: Great is thy Faithfulness
May your feet walk in the way of the Lord
May your voice speak the word of the Lord
May your hands serve god in blessing others
May your life show something of the glory of God
May you know the peace of God now and always.