Tag Archives: 1 Corinthians 3

Intensified Law, Sin Boldly

Our gospel is a continued except from Jesus’ infamous ‘Sermon on the Mount’.

Within the scripture,…

But Jesus’ tone has shifted.
Jesus denounces the rumor that he came to ‘abolish’ the law.

The Torah, teaching, is the first 5 Books in the Hebrew Bible (and Old Testament).
The Torah includes the Ten Commandments and the remaining legal code.

Who enjoys the law? Depends on the situation. 

According to Martin Luther and our Lutheran tradition, the legal code serves three purposes:

  1. Civil Law and Order
    It is a guideline for healthy interaction with God and neighbor while maintaining good order (and boundaries). In essence the legal code restrains us, especially from killing one another, due to the consequences. Honestly, in the words of Brandy Clarks’ Strips “the crime of passion aint worth the crime of fashion” (lol).
  2. A Mirror Reflecting Our Short-Comings
    Who enjoys seeing themselves in the mirror in the morning, without hair and make up done? NO ONE. The legal code is that mirror, which reflects to us the sins, failures, and short-comings we are reluctant to recognize and acknowledge.
  3. Points us to Christ
    Although the third use of the law is debated, after looking into the mirror, it points us to our need for God’s love, mercy, and grace through Jesus the Christ.

Jesus did not abolish the legal code, but intensified it while rebelling against the non-essentials. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on February 17, 2020 in Sermons


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Holy? Perfect? Complete Wholeness

Holy? Perfect? Complete Wholeness


All of our texts this week had a common theme that isn’t at first evident.

We begin with Leviticus 19. We don’t like Leviticus. We struggle to work with it as it is THE legal code and our passage was from the Holiness Code. We all cherry-pick the law based on our own understanding of what is right and what is wrong and what we can justify. Our passage today was about not stripping the vineyard or the fields empty, in order that the poor, the alien, the immigrant in our community would be able to eat from it; thus, serving those in need. The passage left out was about animal sacrifice and we cut it short before it addressed not cutting our hair, not wearing fabric made of mixed materials, body modifications like piercings and tattoos.

At coffee hour, one of my members asked how many sets of piercings do I have; the answer is four. They jokingly said ‘I am not going  to ask how many tattoos you have’; well, that answer is also four. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on February 27, 2017 in Sermon Summaries


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A Life Well-Lived

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At the end of reading the Gospel, I always say “the Gospel of our Lord” and the congregation replies “Praise to you, O Christ”, although they were a little hesitate this week.

Our texts were a little heavy on the law and Lutherans think the law and gospel should be balanced, like a brewmaster balancing the bitter hops with the sweet malt. You could say our texts were a little hoppy this week.

In our Deuteronomy text, we are asked to choose life or death, not mortal physical life or death, but a life well-lived. How do we live a life well-lived? By obeying, or walking in and with the law, the teachings (Torah), the guidelines for our relationship with God and neighbor, such as Psalm 119 speaks. Read the rest of this entry »


Posted by on February 13, 2017 in Sermon Summaries


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