Sermons by Rev. Billy Kluttz (Page 2)
Our Lenten Sermon Series, Unbinding Grief, Unbinding Life continues with Pastor Billy’s sermon, Shouting in Windows and Mirrors. Jesus shouts at Lazarus to come forth in John 11:38-53. This is the first time John uses that verb and then he repeats it throughout the passion narrative to contrast Jesus shouting for life and the crowd shouting for death. How can we read the the Bible as both a window and a mirror (also called descriptive/prescriptive reading) and notice ourselves in…
In this week’s story, Jesus risks his life by returning to Judea to heal Lazarus, despite the warnings from his disciples. We’ll talk about what motivates us to take risks like that and how we can cultivate that kind of love throughout our lives.
In John’s gospel, Jesus tells us repeatedly he is the “bread of life,” but how exactly does that work? This Sunday, Pastor Billy will discuss the great bread chapter of John (chapter 6), Passover, manna, feeding the 5,000, and what Jesus’ invitation to carbo-loaded, full life might mean for us today.
At first, Nicodemus is a secretive disciple of Jesus, but, after Jesus’ crucifixion, Nicodemus finds the courage to come out as a Jesus follower. Nicodemus’ story is good news for all of us in need of a second chance to respond to God’s calling to show up in love for others in need.
In our story this week, God calls Samuel and asks him to deliver harsh words of rebuke to his mentor Eli the priest. Watch Pastor Billy will reflect on how we can learn from Samuel’s example and have honest conversations ourselves that are grounded in courage and vulnerability.
Does God really ask Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac? Or is there a deeper challenge in the story of Genesis 12:1-14? Pastor Billy will preach on what we can all learn from Abraham and Isaac’s encounter with God (spoiler alert: killing your children is not what God wants).
When others share their secrets and fears with us we can respond with support or we can use their trust against them. Christians are called to create communities of vulnerability and care so that we can be open and honest together.
Daniel in the lion’s den is a beloved Bible story, but what does it teach us about loving our neighbors and enemies, too? Pastor Billy talks about lions and tigers, and being the beloved community to everyone we meet, including our enemies.
Even if you can’t yet welcome others with all of your being, God can use that. That is what Naomi learns after shunning Ruth during her journey home to Bethlehem. God is pulling us all toward greater inclusion and community.
Queen Vashti was brave enough to be forgotten. To follow Jesus and change the world, we have to be brave enough to be forgotten, as well.
Adam’s first words to Eve are about how much they have in common. The story of humanity, however, soon turns to a focus on our differences. We need to remember Adam’s focus on our shared humanity and a shared creator. This is the first Sunday of our Summer Stories Sermon Series.
Our story isn’t clear about who is short (Jesus or Zacchaeus), but if we can imagine Jesus as short, it gives new meaning to Jesus’ work with the poor and his crucifixion (and resurrection).