Every week, share as much or as little of your service with one another! It’s a great way to share your church with other people, or get some sort of church service if you don’t have one of your own!
Starting off the new year!
This week our pastor talked about the magi who came to Jesus and how they were an example of the early universality of Christ’s new church. They were foreigners, but they were there at Christ’s side even though he was King of the Jews. They were rich, but they were there at the filthy stable with all the peasant shepherds.
The pastor contrasted that to the modern concept of Christian nationalism, which creates a structure where everyone is expected to be “in their place.” Male, female, white, black, immigrant, native-born, etc., it fights to maintain these structures with a veneer of Christianity, but Christianity is in service to these structures, not the other way around. But the magi show us that “our place” in society is not what matters. What matters is that we all belong by Christ’s side, and how we live like Him is far more important.
This week the sermon was about baptism and the Pentecost! When we get baptized, even as a baby, we are joined together in one baptism, the entire body of Christ, including Christ Himself, who was baptized.
The pastor also emphasized that the revelation of the Holy Spirit over Christ was not just settling His divinity, but also was a valuable revelation to the mostly-Jewish crowd. Monotheism is so important in Judaism, that the idea of the triune God was a bit of a sticking point for those asked to accept Jesus. This was a demonstration to them that they are, in fact, one God, and welcomed them to come worship Him.
I’m personally of the belief that such revelations are available to people today, too, though sometimes they might wait until near/at the end of life. Being willing to have faith but struggling to believe, I think, is not something that God punishes.
This week it was about Jesus’ first recorded miracle, turning water into wine at a wedding. One of the things the priest brought up was that Jesus didn’t do it Himself. He did the miracle, but He specifically asked one of the servants to fill the jugs with water, and then draw up some water/wine and bring it to the master servant. While it’d be nice if we could be the Jesus in this story, most of the time, we could be the servant. When we do God’s will, it may not always be obvious how useful what we can do is, but sometimes, using our gifts for simple things can set the stage for miracles.