Sermons by “Pastor Ball”

Lost Sheep

If the Lord describes Himself in Scripture as our “Shepherd,” it follows that we, as those who belong to Him, are His “sheep.” True to our broken nature, we all wander away from our Shepherd’s provision, wrongly assuming we can find our own way. We all stand in need of rescue! We all are the lost sheep who have wandered away. He pursues His wanderers. Finding us and claiming us, He carries us home. And that’s exactly where He gathers us today: at home in His presence so that He, our Shepherd, can fill us, His sheep, with His love and mercy.

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Philemon

As we gather before the throne of the Lord this day, we are restored in the presence of our Savior and through the fellowship of His Table. For we, like Onesimus, are all repentant runaways when we turn to our Master, Jesus, and confess our guilt before Him. And we, like Onesimus, are all restored brothers and sisters in Christ when we both receive from Him and share with others the good news of His forgiveness.

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Pride

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Live by Faith

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. For by it the people of old received their commendation. By faith we understand that the universe was created by the Word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.

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Pray Like Jesus

Persistence in prayer evoked the admiration of Jesus and wins the attention of the Lord when Abraham intercedes for Sodom. The life of the baptized – to be rooted and built up in Christ Jesus the Lord – is to be rooted in prayer. God hears and answers prayer and so strengthens God’s own. “When I called, you answered me; you increased my strength within me.”

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The Risen Christ

In spite of all we have heard and all that we have seen, it is often hard to believe. Because it is hard to believe, we will invest ourselves in the Easter mystery for fifty days (a week of weeks). Because it is hard to believe, John the evangelist will proide sign after sign celebrating Jesus’ victory over death. Because it is hard to believe, the Lord Jesus will return to us again and again in the mystery of the holy communion, inviting us to touch and taste his presence, and offering us his peace.

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Easter Sunday

This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.” God has indeed raised from the dead the one who was put to death “by hanging him on a tree.” Alleluia! God allows Jesus to appear “to us who were chosen by God as witnesses” in holy baptism and invites us to eat and drink at the table of the risen Christ. Alleluia!

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Palm Sunday

The voice of the suffering savior, Jesus, can be heard in the prophet Isaiah’s words and the pleading of the psalm. We are invited into the agony of our Lord in the extended reading of the story of Jesus’ passion. We who have put on Christ in holy baptism are urged to let the mind of Christ be our own. Lent leads us to this holy moment. Embrace it.

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