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Cloud Theology

Children's sermon
Illustration
Preaching
Sermon
Worship
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Object: 
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In this week’s lectionary gospel reading, Jesus takes Peter, James, and John up a mountain -- and what ensues is a scene with special effects worthy of a state-of-the-art Hollywood blockbuster. As a cloud descends over them, Jesus’ appearance is transformed and he begins conversing with Moses and Elijah... only for the voice of God to chime in. It must have felt like a science fiction spectacular -- especially to the first-century hearers of the gospel account.
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First Sunday in Lent - A
Dean Feldmeyer
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Thomas Willadsen
George Reed
Bethany Peerbolte
For March 1, 2020:
  • Right, Wrong, Whatever by Dean Feldmeyer — The fruit of the forbidden tree in the Eden story represents more than disobedience; it represents moral responsibility and Adam and Eve are hungry for it.
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The Immediate Word

First Sunday in Lent - A
Dean Feldmeyer
Mary Austin
Ron Love
Christopher Keating
Thomas Willadsen
George Reed
Bethany Peerbolte
For March 1, 2020:
  • Right, Wrong, Whatever by Dean Feldmeyer — The fruit of the forbidden tree in the Eden story represents more than disobedience; it represents moral responsibility and Adam and Eve are hungry for it.
  • Second Thoughts: What Happens in the Silence by Mary Austin — Lent’s invitation is to love the quiet the way Jesus does, and to meet up with him there.

Emphasis Preaching Journal

First Sunday in Lent - A
Sandra Herrmann
The scriptures for today bind together the beginning of sin in the world, our salvation from sin, and Jesus’ own vulnerability to the temptation of the devil. We see that the devil is very clever (or that we can be very clever in fooling ourselves about our motives and the possible ramifications of our attitudes and actions).  
First Sunday in Lent - A
Ron Love
Bonnie Bates
Frank Ramirez
Mark Ellingsen
Bill Thomas
Psalm 32
Ash Wednesday - A
Mark Ellingsen
Ash Wednesday is time to stress our sorrow for sin and the way out, a chance to stimulate our awareness of sin as well as the need for and urgency of repentance, along with a Word of God’s forgiveness.

Joel 2:1-2,12-17
Ash Wednesday - A
Mark Ellingsen
Ron Love
Bill Thomas
Bonnie Bates
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Joel 2:1-2,12-17 
With the Presidential Primaries starting to shift into high gear, it is time for Americans to get serious about politics and the future of our nation, to seek to right the nation’s wrongs. For John Calvin this lesson is a message of urgency that we need.  He wrote:

The object of the narrative then, is to make the people sensible, that it was now no time for taking rest... (Calvin’s Commentaries, Vol.XIV, p.44)

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First Sunday in Lent - A
Bethany Peerbolte
Jesus sets the bar high by resisting temptation even from the imagination of the devil. To show just how amazing that accomplishment is this lesson will put temptation in each kids’ hands. You may have seen the videos of kids in a room alone with a marshmallow. They are challenged to not eat the marshmallow then left alone in the room. The kids obviously struggle with the temptation to eat the marshmallow. For this lesson you can use marshmallows or Oreos, both are relatively allergen free.
Ash Wednesday - A
Bethany Peerbolte
Lent can be an odd time for church kids. They are intuitive and can sense that something has changed. If we do not seek to explain why the mood and tone of the community has changed it can be a scary time. We talk more about death, especially Jesus dying, so we need to prepare kids for what is coming.

Say something like:

StoryShare

First Sunday in Lent - A
David O. Bales
Contents
"Thorough Temptation Of The Thoroughly Human" by David O. Bales
"One Man" by David O. Bales



Thorough Temptation of the Thoroughly Human
by David O. Bales
Matthew 4:1-11
Ash Wednesday - A
Peter Andrew Smith
John knocked at the door and waited. His heart was pounding in his chest and he was sweating. He wouldn’t be surprised if Suzy slammed the door into his face. What he had done to her, what he had done to their marriage, was simply unforgivable. His heart leapt when the door started to open and he froze when Suzy’s father, Mark, stood before him. From the look on his father-in-law’s face there was no doubt that he knew what John had done.

The Village Shepherd

First Sunday in Lent - A
Janice B. Scott
We in the West have an interesting culture in which we quite like to be shocked. Many of us enjoy films which are shocking to a greater or lesser degree, and it sometimes seems to be that the higher the rating, the more popular the film. Even huge natural or man-made disasters have a worrying degree of entertainment value in the way they are presented to us over and over again on our television screens. We meanwhile sit in our armchairs munching our chocolates feeling scandalised or shocked or disturbed, but seldom switching off the set.

SermonStudio

Ash Wednesday - A
Elizabeth Achtemeier
Sometime between 500 and 350 B.C., post-exilic Israel experienced a devastating locust plague, followed by a drought. That experience is described in Joel chapter 1. And certainly the people suffered under the dreadful effects of those disasters. But the message of the prophet Joel -- prompted not by the natural disasters, but given him as a revelation from the Lord -- is that the Israelites face a still more terrible disaster if they do not repent and return to their God. "The day of the Lord is coming, it is near" (2:1).

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