Tag Archives: John 13

Jesus’ Final Mandates (Maundy Thursday)

Again, welcome to the Great Three Days of Jesus’ journey from death into life.

It begins with Maundy Thursday.
Maundy is derived from the Latin for mandate (command).

It is on this evening that the church universal reflects on the three final mandates that Jesus the Christ gave to his disciples during their final Passover, final dinner, final evening before his arrest, trial, conviction, passion, crucifixion, and death.

The Synoptic Gospels (Matthew, Mark, and Luke) differ from the Gospel of John.
Since our assigned scripture is John and offers two of the mandates, let us begin with it.

Jesus and the disciples gather for the Passover celebration.

Foot washing was a common practice of hospitality in the ancient near east, but it was an extremely dirty task which causes me to physically cringe due to Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). It was not merely feet, but rather feet that had walked miles, in sandals, in the hot desert sand and dirt. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on April 9, 2020 in Sermons


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Diversity and Love

This morning we encounter two of my favorite passages paired together.

In fact, it was this pairing three years ago that the message continued to burn within me after the service and I recorded a Facebook video, which led to recording sermon summaries and now full sermons.

These complement the previous two weeks and simplifies an over-arching theme in Scripture, but I will attempt to avoid this becoming a long-winded rant.

This weekend I have been at A World A’Fair in Dayton, which is an annual festival of histories, dance, items, and foods from 30+ different nations. It was a rich sampling of the beautiful, unique, and diverse experiment that is the United States. Yet, this richness in races, ethnicities, and cultures have an unfortunate and continued history of tension and conflict due to said diversity.

This is not unlike the experiment that is Christianity. Christianity is practiced in virtually every nation, by individuals of every race, ethnicity, nationality, and culture as well as every socio-economic status, gender identity, sexuality, political affiliation, etc.

Christianity is beautiful, unique, and diverse with billions of Christian practitioners, in millions of congregations, and in thousands of differing denominations. Christianity had, has, and unfortunately will continue to experience tensions and conflicts due to said diversity.

Yet, Christianity was almost not so rich. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on May 20, 2019 in Sermons


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Maundy Thursday: That’s Love

Welcome to the Three Days!

The Three Days is the proper name for Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Holy (or Black) Saturday. During these Three Days, we enter the end of our journey following Christ to the cross in his last days and hours. Perhaps, we receive the largest portion of teaching about truly following Christ (especially after he departs) during this time.

‘Maundy’ is derived from the Latin for mandate or command, but despite the “mandates” it remains the most joyful of the Three Days. Due to these mandates, it is rich in traditions and practices that liturgical nerds (like me) will love.

We begun tonight with the anointing with oil (laying on of hands).
Our service will continue with foot washing and Holy Communion.

Anointing with Oil/Laying on of Hands
The tradition of anointing with oil is one modern Lutherans are not necessarily accustomed with except for Baptism. However, the anointing with oil begun Holy Week with Jesus the Christ anointed ahead of and in preparation for his death and burial. The anointing with oil will also end Holy Week with Mary and the other women walking to Jesus’ tomb with oils prepared for the anointing of the dead.

The Washing of the Feet
The washing of the feet is also not a common practice for Lutherans.

How many have participated in the washing of the feet before?  Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on April 9, 2018 in Sermons


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Lent Meditation: the Word Commands

“This life, therefore, is not godliness but the process of becoming godly, not health but getting well, not being but becoming, not rest but exercise. We are not yet what we shall be, but we are on the way. The process is not yet finished, but it is actively going on. This is not the goal but it is the right road. At the present, everything does not glam and sparkle, but everything is being cleansed.”
Martin Luther, Defense and Explanation of All Articles (1521)

On Sunday, we heard two scriptural passages that can be fun to explore.

The first scripture was Exodus 20 (1-17), the Ten Commandments and it never hurts us to be reminded of these commandments.

1. You should have no gods above me.
2. You should not use my name in vain or use it wrongly.
3. You should remember the Sabbath, or day of rest, and keep it holy.
4. You should honor your father and mother.
5. You should not murder.
6. You should not commit adultery.
7. You should not steal.
8. You should not bear false witness or lie.
9. You should not covet your neighbor’s house.
10. You should not covet your neighbor’s… well you name it.

The last commandment includes everything from your neighbor’s wife and children, to their slaves, to their livestock… it literally covers it ALL.

The Ten Commandments are imagined as the foundation of the law; thus, we envision these as the Word ‘Commands’ us.

The Ten Commandments are standards by which all people, all societies, and all faiths embrace, therefore it is a common code of conduct that we ALL struggle to fully live into. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on March 9, 2018 in Sermons


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