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Wayne Brouwer

Wayne Brouwer is a pastor of the Christian Reformed Church in North America and is an Associate Professor of Religion at Hope College in Holland, Michigan, as well as a member of the faculty of Western Theological Seminary. Brouwer has been the lead pastor in three different congregations. He is a graduate of Dordt College and holds degrees from Calvin Theological Seminary and McMaster University. Over 700 of his articles have been published as well as over a dozen books. Previous CSS Publishing titles by Pastor Bouwer include Political Christianity and Humming Till the Music Returns. He has been a consistent contributor to Emphasis: A Preaching Journal since 2004 and is one of several authors featured in Navigating the Sermon. Pastor Brouwer resides in Holland, Michigan, with his wife Brenda and they are the parents of three daughters.
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Emphasis Preaching Journal

Somebody has to pay! -- Exodus 14:19-31, Romans 14:1-12, Matthew 18:21-35, Psalm 114 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Proper 19 | Ordinary Time 24 - A -- 2011
Anger is like a volcano. Deep in many of us there is a lake of pain, pure molten hurt.
Are you satisfied? -- Exodus 16:2-15, Philippians 1:21-30, Matthew 20:1-16, Psalm 105:1-6, 37-45 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Proper 20 | Ordinary Time 25 - A -- 2011
When my wife was younger, her father typically ended meal times by declaring loudly that he was "suf
New -- Isaiah 43:16-21, Philippians 3:4b-14, John 12:1-8, Psalm 126 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Fifth Sunday in Lent - C -- 2010
In 1954, Marcelle Maurtette penned his play Anastasia.
Why did Jesus have to die? -- Isaiah 52:13--53:12, Hebrews 10:16-25, John 18:1--19:42, Psalm 22 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Good Friday - C -- 2010
While Don Richardson was a student at Prairie Bible Institute in the 1950s his heart burned in antic
Visions -- Acts 9:1-6 (7-20), Revelation 5:11-14, John 21:1-19, Psalm 30 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Third Sunday of Easter - C -- 2010
Giuseppe Tartini's Devil's Trill Sonata is a spectacular piece of music.
The road ahead -- Acts 16:9-15, Revelation 21:10, 22--22:5, John 14:23-29, Psalm 67 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Sixth Sunday of Easter - C -- 2010
When the Danish novelist, George Brandes, was a young man, he looked up to Henrik Ibsen.
No Fear -- Acts 2:1-21, Romans 8:14-17, John 14:8-17 (25-27), Psalm 104:24-34, 35b -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Day of Pentecost - C -- 2010
A woman struggling through the difficulties of the Great Depression went to the front desk of an ins
By their fruits -- 1 Kings 21:1-10 (11-14) 15-21a, Galatians 2:15-21, Luke 7:36--8:3, Psalm 5:1-8 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Proper 6 | Ordinary Time 11 - C -- 2010
Margaret Mead, the world-renowned anthropologist, was speaking at a university and one student asked
What you sow ... -- 2 Kings 5:1-14, Galatians 6:(1-6) 7-16, Luke 10:1-11, 16-20, Psalm 30 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Proper 9 | Ordinary Time 14 - C -- 2010
One of my favorite farming tales is of a pastor in a rural congregation who was tired of hearing peo
Family ties -- Hosea 1:2-10, Colossians 2:6-15 (16-19), Luke 11:1-13, Psalm 85 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Proper 12 | Ordinary Time 17 - C -- 2010
Channing Pollack used to tell a devastating tale of something that happened to him as a young boy.
Sober reflections -- Isaiah 5:1-7, Hebrews 11:29--12:2, Luke 12:49-56, Psalm 80:1-2, 8-19 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Proper 15 | Ordinary Time 20 - C -- 2010
My memories of my great-grandmother Bolt are very vague.
Forfeiting to win -- Jeremiah 18:1-11, Philemon 1:1-21, Luke 14:25-33, Psalm 139:1-6, 13-18 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Proper 18 | Ordinary Time 23 - C -- 2010
Our youngest daughter was born in Nigeria while I was teaching at the Reformed Theological College i
Sale price -- Jeremiah 32:1-3a, 6-15, 1 Timothy 6:6-19, Luke 16:19-31, Psalm 91:1-6, 14-16 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Proper 21 | Ordinary Time 26 - C -- 2010
A friend of mine once described a man he knew as someone who "knew the cost of everything and the va
Patience -- Jeremiah 31:27-34, 2 Timothy 3:14--4:5, Luke 18:1-8, Psalm 119:97-104 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Proper 24 | Ordinary Time 29 - C -- 2010
Patience is a tough virtue, slipping from our grasp in the moment of demand.
Happy hallow… -- Habakkuk 1:1-4; 2:1-4, 2 Thessalonians 1:1-4, 11-12, Luke 19:1-10, Psalm 119:137-144 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Proper 26 | Ordinary Time 31 - C -- 2010
Is today Halloween or Reformation Day?
Saints -- Daniel 7:1-3, 15-18, Ephesians 1:11-23, Luke 6:20-31, Psalm 149 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- All Saints Day - C -- 2010
Many centuries ago, the great theologian Cyprian said that a person who has God as his father, has t
Politics and religion -- Jeremiah 23:1-6, Colossians 1:11-20, Luke 23:33-43, Luke 1:68-79 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Christ The King (Proper 29) - C -- 2010
Once King George and Queen Elizabeth went to a London theater to see a Noel Coward/Gertrude Lawrence
The peaceable kingdom -- Isaiah 11:1-10, Romans 15:4-13, Matthew 3:1-12, Psalm 72:1-7, 18-19 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Second Sunday of Advent - A -- 2010
What difference does my life make for others around me?
In praise of praise -- Isaiah 63:7-9, Hebrews 2:10-18, Matthew 2:13-23, Psalm 148 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- First Sunday after Christmas Day - A -- 2010
Our English word "carol" emerged from the public celebrations of late Medieval France.
Here comes Jesus -- Isaiah 42:1-9, Acts 10:34-43, Matthew 3:13-17, Psalm 29 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- The Baptism of our Lord | Epiphany 1 | Ordinary Time 1 - A -- 2010
It was a new gospel hit when I was a teen, with words taken from a classic spiritual out of mind and
Becoming what we were meant to be -- Isaiah 49:1-7, 1 Corinthians 1:1-9, John 1:29-42, Psalm 40:1-11 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Epiphany 2 | Ordinary Time 2 - A -- 2010
Mine is a family of book lovers.
Internal medicine -- Isaiah 58:1-9a (9b-12), 1 Corinthians 2:1-12 (13-16), Matthew 5:13-20 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Epiphany 5 | Ordinary Time 5 - A -- 2010
Some years ago Europa Times carried a story in which Mussa Zoabi of Israel claimed to be the
The worry test -- Isaiah 49:8-16a, 1 Corinthians 4:1-5, Matthew 6:24-34, Psalm 131 -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Epiphany 8 | Ordinary Time 8 - A -- 2010
For a time, many years ago, the most popular song around the world was Bobbie McFarrin's little tune
A mighty wind -- Acts 2:1-21, Romans 8:22-27, John 15:26-27; 16:4b-15, Psalm 104:24-34, 35b -- Wayne Brouwer, Schuyler Rhodes -- Day of Pentecost - B -- 2009
An ancient Jewish writing declares, "Pentecost is the day on which Torah was given."
Shifting currents -- 1 Samuel 16:1-13, Ephesians 5:8-14, John 9:1-41, Psalm 23 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Fourth Sunday in Lent - A -- 2008
Most twentieth-century predictions about life in this new millennium have proved widely




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Easter 6
30 – Sermons
110+ – Illustrations / Stories
26 – Children's Sermons / Resources
20 – Worship Resources
25 – Commentary / Exegesis
4 – Pastor's Devotions
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25 – Sermons
160+ – Illustrations / Stories
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18 – Worship Resources
23 – Commentary / Exegesis
4 – Pastor's Devotions
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Easter 7
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160+ – Illustrations / Stories
27 – Children's Sermons / Resources
25 – Worship Resources
27 – Commentary / Exegesis
4 – Pastor's Devotions
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29 – Sermons
140+ – Illustrations / Stories
27 – Children's Sermons / Resources
28 – Worship Resources
32 – Commentary / Exegesis
4 – Pastor's Devotions
and more...
Trinity Sunday
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140+ – Illustrations / Stories
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They are not of the world, even as I am not of it.  Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.  As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world. (vv. 16-18)
John Jamison
When he had led them out to the vicinity of Bethany, he lifted up his hands and blessed them.  While he was blessing them, he left them and was taken up into heaven.  Then they worshiped him and returned to Jerusalem with great joy. And they stayed continually at the temple, praising God. (vv. 50-53)

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Acts 1:15-17, 21-26
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The resurrection of Jesus takes center stage, rightfully so, in the church calendar. By contrast, Ascension Day often falls by the wayside, unless it happens to fall on a Sunday. It’s something Jesus did, but it’s not necessarily a significant event in the lives of many churches. These three texts, however, illustrate the central importance of this event, which is the capstone of the ministry of Jesus.
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There is still a lot to be in despair about in America. Racism is not gone, as the families who lost loved ones to wanton police shootings continue to mourn. Those who lost jobs, incomes, and businesses in the pandemic continue to suffer and remain in despair. It is all so tragic, as the German-born philosopher Theodor Adono once wrote: “But he who dies in despair has lived his life in vain.” Martin Luther saw this text and its account of the ascension as a time to preach on faith and the comfort from despair that that Word brings:

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Many years ago I met a churchwarden who had grown up within a Jewish background but who had converted to Christianity quite late in life. She had had an amazing conversion experience which had affected her deeply and as a result had become an ardent Christian. She was particularly zealous about Christian mission to the Jews, wanting to convert all Jews to Christianity. When I asked whether she thought Jesus was the only way to God, she looked astonished and said yes, of course!


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Brian could feel the heat of anger rising in his neck. His left hand curled into a fist and he hit the palm of his right hand. He felt dizzy as he looked around.

Clothes, towels, and sheets were scattered all over the living room. A glass of orange juice was empty, the contents still dribbling down the side of the coffee table. A towel landed at his feet. His one-year-old looked up at him and giggled, making Brian even more angry.
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We Americans have long had a love affair with winners. Successful undertakings of nearly every sort quickly receive the admiration of those around us. As a group, we take great delight in banquets and other ceremonies at which honors are distributed. People who come in second are rarely remembered in our culture. The runner-up usually receives a brief word of recognition and then is quickly forgotten. If you happen to be a sports enthusiast, you'll remember the poor old Buffalo Bills of the NFL.
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An example:
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Ascension Day is a good time for the Christian community to assess where it has been and where it is going. We need to ask ourselves why we are here and exactly what is it we are supposed to be doing. Our lesson for this day provides us with much needed information on what we should be doing and what our final destination as we travel this road in ministry with Jesus is.
Erskine White
When people are confused or afraid, when they feel that things are out of control, or when they feel helpless to overcome the problems which confront them, they often resort to "pie in the sky" religion. They look for Jesus to come and fix what they can't fix for themselves. They figure that one day, as if by magic, Jesus will make everything right for them in the "sweet bye and bye."


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“God, I know that I’m supposed to have faith and trust,” Paul said softly as he sat on the bench outside of the nursing home. “Yet a part of me wishes you would tell me when.”

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