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I Am The True Vine

Acts 8:26-40; Psalm 22:25-31; 1 John 4:7-21; John 15:1-8 Bigfork Community United Methodist Church April 29, 2018 – Fifth Sunday of Easter Two great streams of scripture meet today. The Lord tells his disciples, “I AM the true vine.” In these few words he affirms that he is the Promised One, the one for whom Israel has been watching and waiting since the fall of Jerusalem. First, Jesus says, “I AM.” Let us go back to God’s commission to Moses at the burning bush. Moses says he can’t do it. God says he can, for “I will be with you.” Moses says nobody will believe him. When they ask me the name of the one who is sending me, what do I say? God says, “I AM WHO I AM…. Tell them I AM sent me.

One Flock, One Shepherd

Acts 4:5-12; Psalm 23; 1 John 3:16-24; John 10:11-18 Bigfork Community United Methodist Church April 22, 2018 – Fourth Sunday of Easter We have talked before about the difference between formal authority and informal authority. Dry as it seems, it runs all through our Good Book…and all through our lives…and we should be aware of it…because whenever informal authority becomes more compelling than formal authority, it means that something important is about to happen. Formal authority is the power you have because of your position. Your teacher had all kinds of authority over what happened to you in school. The principal of the school had even more authority. Your mom was always right…beca

Children of God

Acts 3:12-19; Psalm 4; 1 John 3:1-7; Luke 24:36b-48 Bigfork Community United Methodist Church April 15, 2018 – Third Sunday of Easter “How plain, how full, and how deep a compendium of genuine Christianity!” That is how John Wesley described the First Letter of John. There is a dreamlike quality to the language in this book. It goes beyond the bounds of mortal prose. We read today from the third chapter this morning and our opening line is a good example of what I am talking about here: “See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and that is what we are.” That takes us right off the surface of the planet and we are set on a cosmic plane. The author is n

Those Who Have Not Seen and Yet Believe

Acts 4:32-35; Psalm 133; 1 John 1:1-2:2; John 20:19-31 Bigfork Community United Methodist Church April 8, 2018 – Second Sunday of Easter I get the feeling that the readings are about us this week. I might be missing something or seeing something that isn’t there, but let me tell you why. I look forward to your feedback. In this season after Easter, we have many readings from the church, the body of Christ on earth, in that precious period just after his death …and resurrection. What a time that must have been. We have a household of men and women – the First Family – who have seen their leader…their teacher…their rabbi…their master…put to death. The Romans have gone to extra trouble to mak


Acts 10:34-43;Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24; 1 Corinthians 15:1-11; John 20:1-18 Bigfork Community United Methodist Church April 1, 2018 – read by Nanci Bain We all come to the garden alone. Sooner or later, we have to walk into the middle of the harshest reality and find out what is waiting for us there. This is not a part of ministry that made the decision easier. I had not thought much about it, and I suspect that we all avoid thinking about the last things as long as we can and what it means to finish well. We are too busy right now. We will get around to it as soon as we take care of the job we are doing. We would rather let the dead bury the dead, making the most of the days we have been gi


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