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Mark Ellingsen

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Mark Ellingsen, a minister in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA), has been a professor of Church History at the Interdenominational Theological Center in Atlanta, Georgia, since 1993. He graduated magna cum laude from Gettysburg College (Pennsylvania) and Yale University, from which he received three master's degrees in divinity, arts, and philosophy, as well as his Ph.D. He has authored eighteen books including Sin Bravely: A Joyful Alternative to a Purpose-Driven Life (Continuum) and The Integrity of Biblical Narrative (Wipf and Stock). He and his wife have three grown children. When he is not writing or teaching, Ellingsen enjoys discussing politics, sports, and playing guitar.
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Commentary

Emphasis Preaching Journal

The Life of Faith -- Isaiah 1:1, 10-20, Hebrews 11:1-3, 8-16, Luke 12:32-40, Psalm 50:1-8, 22-23 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 14 | Ordinary Time 19 - C -- 2022
The theme of the lessons for this Sunday is the life of faith.
From Evil to Grace and Wisdom -- Jeremiah 8:18--9:1, 1 Timothy 2:1-7, Luke 16:1-13, Psalm 79:1-9 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 20 | Ordinary Time 25 - C -- 2022
Jeremiah 8:18--9:1
Christ Is In Control -- Jeremiah 31:7-14, Ephesians 1:3-14, John 1:(1-9) 10-18 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Second Sunday after Christmas - C -- 2022
Jeremiah 31:7-14
Called To Respond -- Isaiah 6:1-8 (9-13), 1 Corinthians 15:1-11, Luke 5:1-11 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Epiphany 5 | Ordinary Time 5 - C -- 2022
Isaiah 6:1-8 (9-13)
The Lord Changes You -- Genesis 15:1-12, 17-18, Philippians 3:17--4:1, Luke 13:31-35, Luke 9:28-36 (37-43a) -- Mark Ellingsen -- Second Sunday in Lent - C -- 2022
Hanging around the Lord changes you.
How the Cross Changes Everyday Life -- Hebrews 10:16-25 or Hebrews 4:14-16; 5:7-9, John 18:1--19:42, Isaiah 52:13--53:12 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Good Friday - C -- 2022
Isaiah 52:13--53:12
The Great Things God's Love Does -- Acts 16:9-15, Revelation 21:10, 22--22:5, John 14:23-29, John 5:1-9 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Sixth Sunday of Easter - C -- 2022
The great things God’s love does.
Embracing Second Place -- 2 Kings 2:1-2, 6-14, Galatians 5:1, 13-25, Luke 9:51-62, Psalm 77:1-2, 11-20 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 8 | Ordinary Time 13 - C -- 2022
This is a Sunday to consider the theme of discipleship.
The Light of Grace Alone Shows the Way -- Isaiah 60:1-6, Ephesians 3:1-12, Matthew 2:1-12 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Epiphany of the Lord - B -- 2021
Isaiah 60:1-6
Christ and His Love Be Glorified -- 2 Kings 2:1-12, 2 Corinthians 4:3-6, Mark 9:2-9 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Transfiguration Sunday - B -- 2021
2 Kings 2:1-12
With God, You Get More Than What You Asked For -- John 12:20-33, Hebrews 5:5-10, Jeremiah 31:31-34 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Fifth Sunday in Lent - B -- 2021
Jeremiah 31:31-34
The Resurrection Gets Us All Together -- Acts 4:32-35, 1 John 1:1--2:2, John 20:19-31 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Second Sunday of Easter - B -- 2021
Historically, this is the first Sunday during which newly baptized members on Easter would be admitt
How the Ways of God Make Christians Counter Cultural -- Acts 1:15-17, 21-26, 1 John 5:9-13, John 17:6-19 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Seventh Sunday of Easter - B -- 2021
Acts 1:15-17, 21-26
God Delivers -- 2 Samuel 1:1, 17-27, 2 Corinthians 8:7-15, Mark 5:21-43 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 8 | Ordinary Time 13 - B -- 2021
There are lots of reasons to be grateful!
United in the Grace of Christ -- 2 Samuel 19:5-9, 15, 31-33, Ephesians 4:25--5:2, John 6:35, 41-51 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 14 | Ordinary Time 19 - B -- 2021
2 Samuel 19:5-9, 15, 31-33
It Takes God To Get Our Relationships Right -- Proverbs 31:10-31, James 3:13--4:3, 7-8a, Mark 9:30-37 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 20 | Ordinary Time 25 - B -- 2021
Proverbs 31:10-31
There's Always Somebody to Help -- Ruth 1:1-18, Hebrews 9:11-14, Mark 12:28-34 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 26 | Ordinary Time 31 - B -- 2021
Ruth 1:1-18
It Takes Good Messengers -- Luke 3:1-6, Philippians 1:3-11, Baruch 5:1-9, Malachi 3:1-4 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Second Sunday of Advent - C -- 2021
We knew it all along, but it takes good messengers if we are to hear it again.
God Is Going Before Us -- 1 Corinthians 1:10-18, Isaiah 9:1-4, Matthew 4:12-23 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Epiphany 3 | Ordinary Time 3 - A -- 2020
The texts for the Third Sunday After Epiphany are that God goes before us.
Awareness of Sin and The Urgency of Repentance -- Acts 17:22-31, 1 Peter 3:13-22, John 14:15-21 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Ash Wednesday - A -- 2020
Ash Wednesday is time to stress our sorrow for sin and the way out, a chance to stimulate our awaren
God’s Love Shines Through the Cross and Changes Us -- Matthew 26:14--27:66, Isaiah 50:4-9a, Philippians 2:5-11, Matthew 27:11-54 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Passion Sunday - A -- 2020
God’s love shines through the cross and changes us.
We Need God In Charge of Our Lives -- John 10:1-10, 1 Peter 2:19-25, Acts 2:42-47 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Fourth Sunday of Easter - A -- 2020
God takes charge!

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The Life of Faith -- Isaiah 1:1, 10-20, Hebrews 11:1-3, 8-16, Luke 12:32-40, Psalm 50:1-8, 22-23 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 14 | Ordinary Time 19 - C -- 2022
The theme of the lessons for this Sunday is the life of faith.
United in the Grace of Christ -- 2 Samuel 19:5-9, 15, 31-33, Ephesians 4:25--5:2, John 6:35, 41-51 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 14 | Ordinary Time 19 - B -- 2021
2 Samuel 19:5-9, 15, 31-33
It Takes Good Messengers -- Luke 3:1-6, Philippians 1:3-11, Baruch 5:1-9, Malachi 3:1-4 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Second Sunday of Advent - C -- 2021
We knew it all along, but it takes good messengers if we are to hear it again.

Illustration

Emphasis Preaching Journal

Sermon Illustrations for New Year's Day (2022) -- Ecclesiastes 3:1-13, Revelation 21:1-6a, Matthew 25:31-46 -- Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez, Mark Ellingsen -- New Year's Day - C -- 2022
Ecclesiastes 3:1-13
Sermon Illustrations for Christmas 2 (2022) -- Jeremiah 31:7-14, Ephesians 1:3-14, John 1:(1-9) 10-18 -- Mark Ellingsen, Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez -- Second Sunday after Christmas - C -- 2022
Jeremiah 31:7-14
Sermon Illustrations for Trinity Sunday (2022) -- Proverbs 8:1-4, 22-31, Romans 5:1-5, John 16:12-15 -- Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez, Mark Ellingsen -- Trinity Sunday | 1st Sunday after Pentecost - C -- 2022
Proverbs 8:1-4, 22-31
Sermon Illustrations for Epiphany of the Lord (2022) -- Isaiah 60:1-6, Ephesians 3:1-12, Matthew 2:1-12 -- Mark Ellingsen, Frank Ramirez, Bill Thomas -- Epiphany of the Lord - C -- 2022
Isaiah 60:1-6
Sermon Illustrations for Baptism of Our Lord (2022) -- Isaiah 43:1-7, Acts 8:14-17, Luke 3:15-17, 21-22 -- Mark Ellingsen, Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez -- The Baptism of our Lord | Epiphany 1 | Ordinary Time 1 - C -- 2022
Isaiah 43:1-7
Sermon Illustrations for Proper 7 | OT 12 (2022) -- 1 Kings 19:1-4 (5-7) 8-15a, Galatians 3:23-29, Luke 8:26-39 -- Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez, Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 7 | Ordinary Time 12 - C -- 2022
1 Kings 19:1-4 (5-7) 8-15a, Psalms 42 and 43
Sermon Illustrations for Epiphany 2 | OT 2 (2022) -- Isaiah 62:1-5, 1 Corinthians 12:1-11, John 2:1-11 -- Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez, Mark Ellingsen -- Epiphany 2 | Ordinary Time 2 - C -- 2022
Isaiah 6:1-8 (9-13), Psalm 138
Sermon Illustrations for Proper 8 | OT 13 (2022) -- 2 Kings 2:1-2, 6-14, Galatians 5:1, 13-25, Luke 9:51-62 -- Mark Ellingsen, Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez -- Proper 8 | Ordinary Time 13 - C -- 2022
2 Kings 2:1-2, 6-14
Sermon Illustrations for Proper 9 | OT 14 (2022) -- 2 Kings 5:1-14, Galatians 6:(1-6) 7-16, Luke 10:1-11, 16-20 -- Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez, Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 9 | Ordinary Time 14 - C -- 2022
2 Kings 5:1-14, Psalm 30
Sermon Illustrations for Epiphany 3 (OT 3) Cycle C (2022) -- Nehemiah 8:1-3, 5-6, 8-10, 1 Corinthians 12:12-31a, Luke 4:14-21 -- Mark Ellingsen, Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez -- Epiphany 3 | Ordinary Time 3 - C -- 2022
Nehemiah 8:1-3, 5-6, 8-10
Sermon Illustrations for Proper 10 | OT 15 (2022) -- Amos 7:7-17, Colossians 1:1-14, Luke 10:25-37 -- Mark Ellingsen, Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez -- Proper 10 | Ordinary Time 15 - C -- 2022
Amos 7:7-17
Sermon Illustrations for Proper 11 | OT 16 (2022) -- Amos 8:1-12, Colossians 1:15-28, Luke 10:38-42 -- Mark Ellingsen, Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez -- Proper 11 | Ordinary Time 16 - C -- 2022
Amos 8:1-12, Psalm 52
Sermon Illustrations for Epiphany 4 (OT 4) Cycle C (2022) -- Jeremiah 1:4-10, 1 Corinthians 13:1-13, Luke 4:21-30 -- Mark Ellingsen, Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez -- Epiphany 4 | Ordinary Time 4 - C -- 2022
Jeremiah 1:4-10
Sermon Illustrations for Proper 12 | OT 17 (2022) -- Hosea 1:2-10, Colossians 2:6-15 (16-19), Luke 11:1-13 -- Mark Ellingsen, Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez -- Proper 12 | Ordinary Time 17 - C -- 2022
Hosea 1:2-10
Sermon Illustrations for Epiphany 5 (OT 5) Cycle C (2022) -- Luke 5:1-11, 1 Corinthians 15:1-11, Isaiah 6:1-8 (9-13) -- Mark Ellingsen, Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez -- Epiphany 5 | Ordinary Time 5 - C -- 2022
Isaiah 6:1-8, (9-13)
Sermons Illustrations for Proper 13 | OT 18 (2022) -- Hosea 11:1-11, Colossians 3:1-11, Luke 12:13-21 -- Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez, Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 13 | Ordinary Time 18 - C -- 2022
Hosea 11:1-11, Psalm 107:1-9, 43
Sermon Illustrations for Epiphany 6 (OT 6) Cycle C (2022) -- Jeremiah 17:5-10, 1 Corinthians 15:12-20, Luke 6:17-26 -- Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez, Mark Ellingsen -- Epiphany 6 | Ordinary Time 6 - C -- 2022
Jeremiah 17:5-10
Sermon Illustrations for Epiphany 7 (OT 7) Cycle C (2022) -- Genesis 45:3-11, 15, 1 Corinthians 15:35-38, 42-50, Luke 6:27-38 -- Frank Ramirez, Mark Ellingsen, Bill Thomas -- Epiphany 7 | Ordinary Time 7 - C -- 2022
Genesis 45:3-11, 15
Sermon Illustrations for Proper 14 | OT 19 (2022) -- Isaiah 1:1, 10-20, Hebrews 11:1-3, 8-16, Luke 12:32-40 -- Mark Ellingsen, Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez -- Proper 14 | Ordinary Time 19 - C -- 2022
Isaiah 1:1, 10-20
Sermon Illustrations for Proper 15 | OT 20 (2022) -- Isaiah 5:1-7, Hebrews 11:29--12:2, Luke 12:49-56 -- Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez, Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 15 | Ordinary Time 20 - C -- 2022
Isaiah 5:1-7, Psalm 80:1-2, 8-19
Sermon Illustrations for Transfiguration Sunday, Cycle C (2022) -- Exodus 34:29-35, 2 Corinthians 3:12--4:2, Luke 9:28-36 (37-43a) -- Mark Ellingsen, Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez -- Transfiguration Sunday - C -- 2022
Exodus 34:29-35
Sermon Illustrations for Proper 16 | OT 21 (2022) -- Jeremiah 1:4-10, Hebrews 12:18-29, Luke 13:10-17, Psalm 71:1-6 -- Mark Ellingsen, Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez -- Proper 16 | Ordinary Time 21 - C -- 2022
Jeremiah 1:4-10
Sermon Illustrations for Ash Wednesday (2022) -- Joel 2:1-2, 12-17, 2 Corinthians 5:20b--6:10, Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21 -- Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez, Mark Ellingsen -- Ash Wednesday - C -- 2022
Joel 2:1-2, 12-17
Sermon Illustrations for Proper 17 | Ordinary Time 22 (2022) -- Jeremiah 2:4-13, Hebrews 13:1-8, 15-16, Luke 14:1, 7-14 -- Mark Ellingsen, Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez -- Proper 17 | Ordinary Time 22 - C -- 2022
Jeremiah 2:4-13, Psalm 81:1, 10-16
Sermon Illustrations for Lent 1 (2022) -- Deuteronomy 26:1-11, Romans 10:8b-13, Luke 4:1-13 -- Mark Ellingsen, Bill Thomas, Frank Ramirez -- First Sunday in Lent - C -- 2022
Deuteronomy 26:1-11

Political Pulpit

Emphasis Preaching Journal

One Out of Two Americans Has Low-Income Status: Why Is There So Much Silence and What to Do About It -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2012
The title is the subject for this column, a topic that the lectionary texts for March, April, and Ma
What American Christians might do to enhance Muslim life -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2011
The months of March, April, and May are months of repentance and celebration for Christians.
More on financial responsibility in America -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2011
The assigned lectionary texts for the fall invite our further attention to our economy, the federal
Are we still fighting wars? How come? -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2011
These months (especially at Christmas) are the season of peace. Yes, we sing and pray for peace.
Getting real about ecology -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2010
The lessons for the spring are rich in socio-political opportunities for preaching.
Getting maladjusted to business as usual -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2010
Martin Luther King Jr. spoke of Jesus and Christians as "maladjusted" to certain social dynamics.
Is less government really good for America? -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2010
These months will likely be dominated politically by the upcoming elections and their aftermath.
Expanding political horizons in the local congregation -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2009
Wes has offered important reflections on implementing what we write about in these columns in your p
The market needs some managing -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2008
When it comes to economics, things haven't changed much for our nation or for the
The curse of special interests -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2008
I agree with my friend and boss, Wes, that a key issue for the new president, a factor that
We still need affirmative action (as long as there's sin) -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2007
A significant number of the assigned biblical texts for these summer months are about
The war in Iraq: what's next? -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2007
Because we have to submit this column months ahead of the actual publication date, we
Gas prices and the war -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2006
Although only the "political junkies" in your congregation will be interested in it, in
Somebody's child is still fighting -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2006
November and December are supposed to be months for giving thanks and extolling
Favoring the rich -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2006
Most of us know that Jesus and the biblical witnesses were concerned about the plight of

Preaching

SermonStudio

Proper 13 / Pentecost 11 / Ordinary Time 18 -- 2 Samuel 11:26--12:13a, Ephesians 4:1-16, John 6:24-35 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 13 | Ordinary Time 18 - B -- 2018
Theme of the DayBeing fed by our Lord and the companionship it brings.
All Saints Day -- Matthew 5:1-12, 1 John 3:1-3, Revelation 7:9-17, Psalm 34:1-10, 22 -- Mark Ellingsen -- All Saints Day - A -- 2014
Theme of the DayInspired by the saints and the love of God.
Proper 26 / Ordinary Time 31 -- Matthew 23:1-12, 1 Thessalonians 2:9-13, Joshua 3:7-17, Psalm 43, Psalm 107:1-7, 33-37 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 26 | Ordinary Time 31 - A -- 2014
Theme of the DayThe marvelous things God's word does.
Proper 27 / Ordinary Time 32 -- Matthew 25:1-13, 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, Joshua 24:1-3a, 14-25, Psalm 78:1-7 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 27 | Ordinary Time 32 - A -- 2014
Theme of the DayThe difference relating to God makes.
Proper 28 / Ordinary Time 33 -- Matthew 25:14-30, 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11, Judges 4:1-7, Psalm 123 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 28 | Ordinary Time 33 - A -- 2014
Theme of the DayServing God His way. Collect of the Day
Christ the King Sunday -- Matthew 25:31-46, Ephesians 1:15-23, Ezekiel 34:11-16, 20-24, Psalm 100 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Christ The King (Proper 29) - A -- 2014
Theme of the DayThe good news of the reign of Christ.
Thanksgiving Day -- Luke 17:11-19, 2 Corinthians 9:6-15, Deuteronomy 8:7-18, Psalm 65 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Thanksgiving Day - A -- 2014
Theme of the DayWhat thankfulness does to us. Collect of the Day
Proper 25 / Ordinary Time 30 -- Matthew 22:34-46, 1 Thessalonians 2:1-8, Deuteronomy 34:1-12, Psalm 90:1-6, 13-17 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 25 | Ordinary Time 30 - A -- 2014
Theme of the DayIt's what God does, not what we do, that counts!
Reformation Day -- John 8:31-36, Romans 3:19-28, Psalm 46 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Reformation Sunday - A -- 2014
Theme of the DayFreedom! Collect of the Day
Proper 10 / Pentecost 7 / Ordinary Time 15 -- 2 Samuel 6:1-5, 12b-19, Ephesians 1:3-14, Mark 6:14-29 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 10 | Ordinary Time 15 - B -- 2011
Theme of the DayIt's all in God's hands! Collect of the Day
Proper 14 / Pentecost 11 / Ordinary Time 19 -- 2 Samuel 18:5-9, 15, 31-33, Ephesians 4:25--5:2, John 6:35, 41-51 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 14 | Ordinary Time 19 - B -- 2011
Theme of the DayUnited in the grace of Christ. Collect of the Day
Advent 1 -- Isaiah 64:1-9, 1 Corinthians 1:3-9, Mark 13:24-37 -- Mark Ellingsen -- First Sunday of Advent - B -- 2011
Theme of the Day
Proper 15 / Pentecost 12 / Ordinary Time 20 -- 1 Kings 2:10-12; 3:3-14, Ephesians 5:15-20, John 6:51-58 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 15 | Ordinary Time 20 - B -- 2011
Theme of the DayMore about the bread that brings life, wisdom, and unity.
Advent 2 -- Isaiah 40:1-11, 2 Peter 3:8-15a, Mark 1:1-8 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Second Sunday of Advent - B -- 2011
Theme of the Day
Proper 16 / Pentecost 13 / Ordinary Time 21 -- 1 Kings 8:(1, 6, 10-11) 22-30, 41-43, Ephesians 6:10-20, John 6:56-69 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 16 | Ordinary Time 21 - B -- 2011
Theme of the DayAn almighty, caring God who dwells among us.
Advent 3 -- Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11, 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24, John 1:6-8, 19-28 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Third Sunday of Advent - B -- 2011
Theme of the Day
Proper 17 / Pentecost 14 / Ordinary Time 22 -- Song of Solomon 2:8-13, James 1:17-27, Mark 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 17 | Ordinary Time 22 - B -- 2011
Theme of the DayA love that changes lives. Collect of the Day
Advent 4 -- 2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16, Romans 16:25-27, Luke 1:26-38 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Fourth Sunday of Advent - B -- 2011
Theme of the DayOur Savior is coming! Collect of the Day
Proper 18 / Pentecost 15 / Ordinary Time 23 -- Proverbs 22:1-2, 8-9, 22-23, James 2:1-10 (11-13) 14-17, Mark 7:24-37 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 18 | Ordinary Time 23 - B -- 2011
Theme of the DayGod cares for the poor. Collect of the Day
Christmas Eve / Christmas Day -- Isaiah 9:2-7, Titus 2:11-14, Luke 2:1-14 (15-20) -- Mark Ellingsen -- The Nativity of our Lord - B -- 2011
Theme of the DayWhy the Incarnation matters! Collect of the Day
Proper 19 / Pentecost 16 / Ordinary Time 24 -- Proverbs 1:20-33, James 3:1-12, Mark 8:27-38 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 19 | Ordinary Time 24 - B -- 2011
Theme of the DayOnly by the grace of God. Collect of the Day
Christmas 1 -- Isaiah 61:10--62:3, Galatians 4:4-7, Luke 2:22-40 -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2011
Theme of the DayChristmas: dreams realized. Collect of the Day
Proper 20 / Pentecost 17 / Ordinary Time 25 -- Proverbs 31:10-31, James 3:13--4:3, 7-8a, Mark 9:30-37 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 20 | Ordinary Time 25 - B -- 2011
Theme of the DayIt takes God to get our relationships right.
Epiphany of Our Lord -- Isaiah 60:1-6, Ephesians 3:1-12, Matthew 2:1-12 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Epiphany of the Lord - B -- 2011
Theme of the DayThe light of grace shows the way.
Proper 21 / Pentecost 18 / Ordinary Time 26 -- Esther 7:1-6, 9-10; 9:20-22, James 5:13-20, Mark 9:38-50 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 21 | Ordinary Time 26 - B -- 2011
Theme of the DayBaptizing worldly wisdom. Collect of the Day

Sermon

SermonStudio

Wonderful Opportunities For Mission -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 6 | Ordinary Time 11 - A -- 2007
Jesus' ministry and mission was shifting into high gear.
When You're Free (In Christ), Sacrifice Is No Burden! -- Matthew 10:24-39 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 7 | Ordinary Time 12 - A -- 2007
It takes a lot to be a Christian; you have to make your share of sacrifices.
If Your Sense Of Purpose Ever Becomes A Burden, Remember Your Value -- Matthew 10:40-42 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 8 | Ordinary Time 13 - A -- 2007
Do you ever wish you counted for something, that you had value?
How Jesus' Friendship Makes Your Burdens Light -- Matthew 11:16-19, 25-30 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 9 | Ordinary Time 14 - A -- 2007
Jesus was teaching about the kind of authority he has.
It's Not About You; It's All About God -- Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 10 | Ordinary Time 15 - A -- 2007
Jesus left the house (which one we are not sure).
Life's Purpose Is Often Hidden! -- Matthew 13:24-30, 36-43 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 11 | Ordinary Time 16 - A -- 2007
Life is a messy affair. Our purpose is often hidden.
Life And Forgiveness Come Easy When You're Filled With The Spirit -- John 20:19-23 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Day of Pentecost - A -- 2007
It's Pentecost Sunday, a day when we celebrate the birth of the Church and the giving of the Holy Sp
Having Fun With The Great Commission -- Matthew 28:16-20 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Trinity Sunday | 1st Sunday after Pentecost - A -- 2007
I find it interesting that today as we commemorate the Trinity doctrine, the church assigns the Bibl
With A Firm Foundation, Application Is Second Nature -- Matthew 7:21-29 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 4 | Ordinary Time 9 - A -- 2007
Practice makes perfect. If you do these things for Jesus, the Lord will bless you.
Sick People Like Us Will Always Need The (Divine) Doctor -- Matthew 9:9-13, 18-26 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Proper 5 | Ordinary Time 10 - A -- 2007
Jesus spent a lot of his time hanging around undesirable folks, not with "good" people like us.
God Will Prevail -- John 6:40 -- Mark Ellingsen, Charles Cammarata -- 2006
For a family manGod Will Prevail
He Celebrated Easter With His Life -- Matthew 28:1-10 -- Mark Ellingsen, Charles Cammarata -- 2006
For an inactive memberHe Celebrated Easter With His Life
Death Saddens Us -- John 3:16, Psalm 90 -- Mark Ellingsen, Charles Cammarata -- 2006
For an elderly shut-inDeath Saddens Us
An Our Good works And Generosity -- Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Ash Wednesday - A -- 1992
To whom was Jesus referring with these words?
God Works Through Opposites -- Matthew 21:1-11 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Passion Sunday - A -- 1992
God simply does not seem to do the sort of things we would expect our God to do.
Wash Up First For The Meal Before You Eat! -- John 13:1-15 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Maundy Thursday - A -- 1992
"People just do not take the Lord's supper as seriously as they should.
Why Did Jesus Have TO Die? -- John 19:17-30 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Good Friday - A -- 1992
Of course, there is that wonderful, moving moment when, though wracked by pain, he saw his mother an
The Empty Tomb -- John 20:1-9 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Easter Day - A -- 1992
The story continues: "But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb, and as she wept she stooped to look i
What Happens When We Can't Believe It? -- John 20:19-31 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Second Sunday of Easter - A -- 1992
All three of our Bible lessons for today touch on themes that cannot help but direct our attention t
What Happens To You When You Die? -- Luke 24:13-35 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Third Sunday of Easter - A -- 1992
"What happens to you when you die, Dad?" "Of course, son, if you believe in God, you go up to heaven
Led By The Shepherd -- John 10:1-10 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Fourth Sunday of Easter - A -- 1992
Decisions, decisions. Life is full of decisions.
Focus Your Faith -- John 14:1-12 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Fifth Sunday of Easter - A -- 1992
"There are so many religions in the world. Everybody believes in God his/her own way.
Good Works Will Not Save You! -- John 14:15-21 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Sixth Sunday of Easter - A -- 1992
Jesus was still in the middle of his farewell discourse to his disciples.
The Majesty Of God's Love -- John 17:1-11 -- Mark Ellingsen -- Seventh Sunday of Easter - A -- 1992
Jesus was drawing near to the end of his farewell discourse to his disciples, a sermon he gave to th
The Temptations Of Christ And Our Temptations -- Matthew 4:1-11 -- Mark Ellingsen -- First Sunday in Lent - A -- 1992
Some of the worst temptations seem to come when you are alone, do they not?

The Political Pulpit

Emphasis Preaching Journal

The war in Iraq: what's next? -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2008
Click here
The health-care crisis: -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2008
Recent reports indicate that 47 million Americans were without health insurance in the
The health-care crisis: Are the candidates really concerned? -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2008
Recent reports indicate that 47 million Americans were without health insurance in the summer of 200
Conspicuous consumption and its politics -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2007
Tax time and the season of Lent. There are a lot of crosses for the faithful and the
Beware of virtues -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2007
Of course, Christians should be good citizens! That is just common sense, most
What Christians can do to help our schools -- Mark Ellingsen -- 2007
In the first weeks of September and October many members in your congregation will
Assaults on the elderly: what politics have to do with it -- Mark Ellingsen
Time magazine predicts that a hot-button issue for the upcoming midterm
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New & Featured This Week

The Immediate Word

Dean Feldmeyer
Thomas Willadsen
Katy Stenta
Mary Austin
Christopher Keating
George Reed
Quantisha Mason-Doll
For October 2, 2022:

CSSPlus

John Jamison
Object: A printed copy of the job description that is included with this week’s message. (Download here.)

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Hello, everyone! (Let them respond.) I have another story for you today. Are you ready? (Let them respond.) Great!

Emphasis Preaching Journal

David Coffin
All of today’s texts address times along the faith journey where a mature faith is helpful. Modern examples include a church which has just completed a major building project. The ribbon cutting celebration is in the past. It is time to make payments to the creditors. Also, there are maintenance and upkeep costs along with knowing the state will be making inspection visits to assure building safety standards remain current.
Bill Thomas
Frank Ramirez
Mark Ellingsen
Lamentations 1:1-6; 3:19-26
John Calvin well describes the distress and doubt which this lesson depicts:

...for there is nothing more difficult for men than to preserve their minds in a state of peace and tranquility, undisturbed by any disquieting fears, whilst they are in this world, which is subject to many changes. (Calvin’s Commentaries, Vol.V/1, p. 18)

The Village Shepherd

Janice B. Scott
Alice loved ballet. She'd been given a ballet video for her birthday, and she spent hours watching it. When she'd been attending ballet classes for three weeks, she announced to the assembled family that she was going to be a ballet dancer when she grew up.

Alice's mother and father exchanged meaningful glances. "Ballet means a lot of hard work," warned her father.

StoryShare

John S. Smylie
David O. Bales
Contents
What's Up This Week
"Where Have All the Churches Gone?" by John Smylie
"Caught Not Taught" by John Smylie
"Oh, Mulberries!" by David Bales

Note: This installment was originally published in 2007.

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Where Have All the Churches Gone?
By John Smylie
Lamentations 1:1-6

SermonStudio

David E. Leininger
A couple of years ago, a fascinating book by Mitch Albom hit the bestseller lists, Tuesdays with Morrie. The author had learned that his old teacher was slowly dying of Lou Gehrig's disease, and after an absence of many years, the two reconnected and began to get together every Tuesday. The book shares some of the great lessons that emerged from those weekly conversations. For example:

"Okay, question," I say to Morrie. His bony fingers hold his glasses across his chest, which rises and falls with each labored breath.

"What's the question?" he says.
Carlos Wilton
The little-known book of Lamentations was likely composed in the ashes of Jerusalem, following the Babylonian invasion which carried the leaders of the Jewish community off into exile. It speaks to the concerns of the Jerusalem community for their long-term survival under occupation by a foreign power. While the book's title sounds grim, and its setting is dark, the book is fundamentally life-affirming. It is a testimony to the steadfast love of God that may be discovered through renewed faith, even in troubled times.

Dallas A. Brauninger
1. Text

The apostles said to the Lord, "Increase our faith!" [6] The Lord replied, "If you had faith the size of a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, 'Be uprooted and planted in the sea,' and it would obey you.
John W. Clarke
In most congregational settings, the name Habakkuk does not bring people to their feet. He is not considered famous biblically speaking, like the more recognized names of Isaiah, Jeremiah, and others. In point of fact, most people do not know who Habakkuk is or what he did.

Habakkuk was a prophet who undertook to sustain the faith of the nation through one of the most hopeless periods of Hebrew history.
Robert R. Kopp
The Dead Poets Society is one of my favorite movies.

It's about an English teacher named John Keating who returns to his stodgy old alma mater named Welton Academy -- the students call it "Hellton" -- and challenges students to live extraordinary lives.

Mr. Keating tells a few students about a secret organization called The Dead Poets Society.

"The Dead Poets Society," he reveals with eyes aglow, "was a society dedicated to sucking the marrow out of life. That phrase is by Thoreau and was invoked at every meeting."

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