Later this month Woodland Hills will be doing our annual baptism ceremony at Lake Phalen, and so in light of that Greg used this week’s sermon to talk about baptism and contrasting it with the magical way of thinking about it that we see in the movie ‘Oh Brother Where Art Thou’. Read More
The word “repent” is often associated with fear based tactics like street side preachers shouting “turn or burn!” Though fear based attempts to motivate change rarely have lasting positive impact. The New Testament picture of repentance is instead displayed as a joyful invitation to acceptance of the grace and mercy poured out by a God of love.
Putting off immoral behavior can seem a lot like legalism. So, how do we reconcile that we were saved by grace not works and that we need to put off immoral behavior? In this sermon, Greg shows that we need to trust in God’s reality instead of how we define our own reality. Read More
Jesus never asked for background checks on people before he ministered to them. His life and death reflect an all inclusive love and grace toward all people. Through Christ, God gives a massive bear hug of love and forgiveness around humanity. Read More
When Jesus prayed from the cross, “Father, forgive them …” he was expressing the radical love of the Father that extends forgiveness to all the world. While such an expression of forgiveness is far from typical, it contains the ability to heal, transform hearts and release people to forgive others. Read More
Jesus was innocent but he died the death of the guilty. He stood in our place, taking on our life so that we might have his. There is no greater act in all of history. Read More
As children, we learn to play “hide-and-seek” with our siblings, parents and friends. Many of us continue to play this game with God as adults. Kevin Johnson challenges us to turn to God with our whole heart and receive God’s mercy and grace. Read More
In the story of the Prodigal Son, the son leaves home and experiences intensely that something is missing. Eventually he comes to his senses and goes home to his father. Greg connected this desire that the son felt to the German word sehnsucht which is a powerful form of longing that we all feel at times in our lives. Read More
When John the Baptist was proclaiming the coming of the Messiah he preached repentance for the forgiveness of sins and called people to be baptized. Jin Kim connected this proclamation to faithfulness in the body of Christ and the importance of bearing fruit in the world. Read More
Jesus and his followers had very different ideas about what would happen when Jesus finally got to Jerusalem. These differences were so serious that everyone abandoned Jesus when his path took him to the cross. It may be tempting to judge Jesus’ followers as short-sighted hypocrites, but Greg challenges us with the question of whether we really would do differently under similar circumstances.