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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

Love that hurts -- Joel 2:1-2, 12-17, 2 Corinthians 5:20b--6:10, Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21, Psalm 51:1-17 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Ash Wednesday - C -- 2006
The story is told of a young girl whose very best friend lived just down the street. They
Looking for a leader -- Deuteronomy 18:15-20, 1 Corinthians 8:1-13, Mark 1:21-28 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Epiphany 4 | Ordinary Time 4 - B
Leadership is a hot topic in business and society.
Family privilege -- Genesis 21:8-21, Romans 6:1b-11, Matthew 10:24-39, Psalm 86:1-10, 16-17 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Proper 7 | Ordinary Time 12 - A
My daughters know the direct access code to my office phone.
Doing our part -- 2 Kings 5:1-14, 1 Corinthians 9:24-27, Mark 1:40-45 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Epiphany 6 | Ordinary Time 6 - B
My four-year-old daughter wanted to be near her daddy the other day, even though I was busy in the g
On beyond perfection -- Exodus 20:1-4, 7-9, 12-20, Philippians 3:4b-14, Matthew 21:33-46 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Proper 22 | Ordinary Time 27 - A
On Beyond Zebra! Remember the book by Dr. Seuss?
The road no one wants to travel -- Isaiah 7:10-16, Romans 1:1-7, Matthew 1:18-25, Psalm 80:1-7, 17-19 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Fourth Sunday of Advent - A
Last winter, I had to attend a meeting in Ontario, Canada.
Believing is seeing -- 1 Samuel 16:1-13, Ephesians 5:8-14, John 9:1-41, Psalm 23 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Fourth Sunday in Lent - A
Sometimes we see people who are wide-eyed with wonder.
People you can count on -- Exodus 1:8--2:10, Romans 12:1-8, Matthew 16:13-20, Psalm 124 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Proper 16 | Ordinary Time 21 - A
Some years ago, a major research firm conducted a survey to determine what people would be willing t
Breaking boxes -- Acts 10:34-43, Colossians 3:1-4, John 20:1-18 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Easter Day - A
The central message of Christian faith is that Jesus was raised from the dead.
Finding safety in the call of the wild -- Acts 2:42-47, 1 Peter 2:19-25, John 10:1-10, Psalm 23 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Fourth Sunday of Easter - A
There are two themes that run through the passages for today.
The day God got lonely -- Genesis 2:15-17; 3:1-7, Romans 5:12-19, Matthew 4:1-11, Psalm 32 -- Wayne Brouwer -- First Sunday in Lent - A
Today is the first Sunday during Lent. This is an important fact to note.
Living in unsafe neighborhoods -- Genesis 25:19-34, Romans 8:1-11, Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23, Psalm 119:105-112 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Proper 10 | Ordinary Time 15 - A
We vacationed recently on Hilton Head Island.
Building a new team -- Mark 8:31-38, Romans 4:13-25, Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Second Sunday in Lent - B
When Vince Lombardi was hired as head coach of the Green Bay Packers in 1958, the team was in dismal
Starting over -- John 12:20-33, Hebrews 5:5-10, Jeremiah 31:31-34, Psalm 51:1-12 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Fifth Sunday in Lent - B
A college professor presented his class syllabus on the first day of the new semester.
Spiritual chinook -- John 15:26-27; 16:4b-15, Romans 8:22-27, Acts 2:1-21, Psalm 104:24-34, 35b -- Wayne Brouwer -- Day of Pentecost - B
In northern parts of the United States winter weather reports include phrases like "cold
Leveraging the family genome -- John 15:1-8, 1 John 4:7-21, Acts 8:26-40, Psalm 22:25-31 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Fifth Sunday of Easter - B
Roman historian, Herodotus, told of the pride the Egyptians had in being the oldest
Looking for heroes -- Mark 4:35-41, 2 Corinthians 6:1-13, 1 Samuel 17:(1a, 4-11, 19-23), 32-49, Psalm 9:9-20 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Proper 7 | Ordinary Time 12 - B
The year was 1934. Times were difficult around the world. Times were especially
Know thyself -- 2 Samuel 11:26--12:13a, Ephesians 4:1-16, John 6:24-35, Psalm 51:1-12 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Proper 13 | Ordinary Time 18 - B
While this famous Greek maxim is attributed to any number of ancient Greek
Shall we dance? -- 2 Samuel 6:1-5, 12b-19, Ephesians 1:3-14, Mark 6:14-29, Psalm 24 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Proper 10 | Ordinary Time 15 - B
In both its original Japanese and later American versions the movie, Shall We
Journey -- Mark 8:31-38, Romans 4:13-25, Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Second Sunday in Lent - B
Remember when you first said to someone that you loved her?
Changing times -- Isaiah 40:1-11, 2 Peter 3:8-15a, Mark 1:1-8 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Second Sunday of Advent - B
Advent reminds us of the flow of time. We are all bound by time.
Midterm exams -- Judges 4:1-7, 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11, Matthew 25:14-30 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Proper 28 | Ordinary Time 33 - A
At the college where I teach in the religion department, we are just past midterm exams.
Testimonies -- Deuteronomy 34:1-12, 1 Thessalonians 2:1-8, Matthew 22:34-46 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Proper 25 | Ordinary Time 30 - A
In Susan Howatch's novel, Absolute Truths, the main character is a rather perfect man.
The day boy and the night girl -- Isaiah 9:1-4, 1 Corinthians 1:10-18, Matthew 4:12-23, Psalm 27 -- Wayne Brouwer -- Epiphany 3 | Ordinary Time 3 - A
In 1882 George MacDonald wrote a fascinating story that powerfully illumines the thought behind toda




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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
and more...
25 – Sermons
160+ – Illustrations / Stories
22 – Children's Sermons / Resources
18 – Worship Resources
23 – Commentary / Exegesis
4 – Pastor's Devotions
and more...
Easter 7
30 – Sermons
160+ – Illustrations / Stories
27 – Children's Sermons / Resources
25 – Worship Resources
27 – Commentary / Exegesis
4 – Pastor's Devotions
and more...
29 – Sermons
140+ – Illustrations / Stories
27 – Children's Sermons / Resources
28 – Worship Resources
32 – Commentary / Exegesis
4 – Pastor's Devotions
and more...
Trinity Sunday
27 – Sermons
140+ – Illustrations / Stories
29 – Children's Sermons / Resources
29 – Worship Resources
30 – Commentary / Exegesis
4 – Pastor's Devotions
and more...
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John Jamison
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.
Paul E. Robinson
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An example:
John W. Clarke
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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