This Sunday’s sermon delivered by Pastor Matt Johnson was about God’s character, who God really is! Pastor Matt told the congregation that God isn’t distant or out of touch. God’s heart “is one of an obedient slave” and we need to have this kind of attitude in our relationships with others. Matt said, “This attitude leads to freedom and joy!”
This is the blog which contains the worship sermons for First Presbyterian Church McMinnville, Oregon done each Sunday at 9:30 am. This blog is posted to every Monday on a weekly basis.
In today’s sermon, Pastor Matt Johnson spoke about “the characteristic of being oriented towards the needs of others.” He made up a word to fit his definition, Allosity. Pastor Matt emphasized that we are not only to believe in Christ, but to suffer for him. He told the congregation that the kind of suffering Paul spoke about means to “look to the interests of others and value the interests of others above your own.” Pastor Johnson told us this kind of Christian friendship doesn’t come naturally. However, he told us that “it’s something that we receive by grace and work at through humility and commitment to the life in Christ together.”
Today was a joyful day in our church as it was the first sermon preached by Pastor Matt Johnson, our new full time pastor! Pastor Matt spoke to the congregation about what it means to be friends in Christ, friendships between Christians. He told us that because these relationships include the presence of Christ, they can make us more like Christ.
This sermon was the first in a series of sermons Pastor Matt will preach from Philippians on “Friendship + Jesus = ?” this summer.
On this Fourth of July weekend, the Reverend John Harland spoke to the congregation about true freedom. Reverend Harland told us that it’s God’s desire to give abundant life to everyone. The reverend explained that whenever God’s spirit is with us we have freedom. The spirit of the Lord is with us and we are never alone.
The Reverend Jack Hodges told the congregation today, that this Matthew passage is a hard one to preach. He said that today’s Christians don’t think these words apply to us, but they do! The point is about priorities and commitment the Reverend Hodges said. He said these words are particularly important to First Presbyterian Church in the light of our new opportunity to begin with a new pastor.
The Reverend Jack Chan spoke to the congregation today about caring for their souls. He reminded them not to take their souls lightly and to live wisely. He spoke about Hell and said that Hell is the existence away from the presence of God. Reverend Chan said the best way to faith is to let love grow in your heart. Finally, he noted that “Love, perfect love, is yours to have in Christ.”
This Sunday the Reverend Doctor Carolyn Johnson spoke about the trinity and how hard it is for humans to explain or understand that three persons could be one. She told the congregation it was O.K. not to understand this because most people don’t. Reverend Johnson told us that what we can understand is God wants us to: love people, show mutual respect for them and live self-giving lives.
Today the Reverend John R. Harland speaks to the congregation about Pentecost. On that day, “The Birthday of the Church”, Reverend Harland tells us that “the Holy Spirit translated and Peter interpreted.” Today if we tell the truth about the importance of Christ in our lives from our own experience, we are both interpreters and witnesses to Jesus Christ.
Reverend Jack Hodges tells the congregation that while Paul was waiting for his traveling companions in Athens, he saw many idols and alters. So Paul could see that these people had a sense that their gods were important. So, Paul started where the people were and spoke to them about their “unknown God” being the creator of the universe.
This sermon was presented by Reverend Matthew (Matt) Johnson who will soon become the new pastor of First Presbyterian Church McMinnville! Matt spoke about Christians being aliens in the earthly world. The difference between Christians and non-Christians is that our faith and hope are set on our life with Christ one day. Reverend Johnson reminds us that through Christ we have come to trust God’s promises.
In today’s sermon, the Reverend Jack Hodges speaks about the importance of Christian community. He tells us that after the resurrection, Peter told the people to sell all their possessions and live as one community, praising God. They did and the fellowship increased in numbers. However this didn’t last very long. Reverend Hodges explains that in order to keep strong in the faith, Christians need other Christians as reminders of our salvation. In this way the fellowship will increase.
This week Reverend Jack Hodges reviews the events on the Emmaus Road and how sad Jesus’ followers were about all that had transpired with Jesus. Then they met Jesus! Reverend Hodges tells us that the point of that story is that Jesus is ready to meet us at the times of greatest disappointments and sorrows in our lives. He also thinks that Luke purposely named only one of the travelers — because he wanted us “to be that unnamed friend on the road to Emmaus.” Jesus wants to be our traveling companion.
The Reverend Jack Hodges speaks to the congregation today about Doubting Thomas and “God’s relentless pursuit of those not in the room the first time.” Since Thomas wasn’t in the room when Jesus appeared to the disciples, Thomas needed proof that this was really Jesus. Reverend Hodges tells us that Thomas’ predicament reflects ours because we have to believe without seeing Jesus. However, Thomas was capable of coming to real faith and so are we, which is the point of the story. Finally, Reverend Hodges reminds the congregation of God’s persistence and he tells us that “we are called to God’s redemptive agents in the world.”
In Reverend Jack Hodges Easter sermon, we are told that there was no joy that first Easter. Instead the people were confused and fearful of what had transpired. Reverend Hodges reminds us that the resurrection story still confounds people today as we experience a Good Friday world full of natural disasters, human error, homelessness, crime, injustice, sadness, etc. However, he tells us that John’s gospel wants us to understand that “the resurrection of Jesus Christ is the final guarantee that…nothing can stop the life-force that God brings, not even death takes life away.”
In today’s Palm Sunday sermon, the Reverend Jack Hodges, speaks about Jesus being the great moral teacher. Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. When we have faith, we have the sustaining power that goes the distance on the rocky road of life. Reverend Hodges emphasizes that Jesus emphasizes that Jesus opens the way for our hearts to go home and that Jesus brings us to God.