Sermon – July 23, 2017

Creed: Holy Spirit, by Rev. Angela Martin

The Word

John 16:4b-15

“I did not say these things to you from the beginning, because I was with you. But now I am going to him who sent me; yet none of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your hearts. Nevertheless I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. And when he comes, he will prove the world wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment: about sin, because they do not believe in me; about righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will see me no longer; about judgment, because the ruler of this world has been condemned.

“I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth; for he will not speak on his own, but will speak whatever he hears, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. He will glorify me, because he will take what is mine and declare it to you. All that the Father has is mine. For this reason I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you.

Sermon – June 4, 2017

Empowered, by Rev. Mike Holly

The Word

John 7:37-39

On the last day of the festival, the great day, while Jesus was standing there, he cried out, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me, and let the one who believes in me drink. As the scripture has said, ‘Out of the believer’s heart shall flow rivers of living water.’” Now he said this about the Spirit, which believers in him were to receive; for as yet there was no Spirit, because Jesus was not yet glorified.

Sermon – November 22, 2015

BPUMC_Podcast_LogoThe Most Important Thing: Three Truths“, by Rev. Mike Holly

The Word

Philippians 2:1-13

If then there is any encouragement in Christ, any consolation from love, any sharing in the Spirit, any compassion and sympathy, make my joy complete: be of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility regard others as better than yourselves. Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others. Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus,

who, though he was in the form of God,
did not regard equality with God
as something to be exploited,
but emptied himself,
taking the form of a slave,
being born in human likeness.
And being found in human form,
he humbled himself
and became obedient to the point of death—
even death on a cross.

Therefore God also highly exalted him
and gave him the name
that is above every name,
so that at the name of Jesus
every knee should bend,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and every tongue should confess
that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.

Therefore, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed me, not only in my presence, but much more now in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you, enabling you both to will and to work for his good pleasure.

Sermon – May 31, 2015

BPUMC_Podcast_LogoThe Empowering God“, by Rev. Mike Holly

According to pastor and theologian James Howell, the mystery of the Trinity (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) has always befuddled the church. Even early on in the church, to believe that the One God was in fact expressed in three ways did not sit well with some. In order to make sense of the Trinity, several thinkers tried to come up with their own ideas. One theologian named Sabellius “taught there was a single God, first wearing the mask of the Father, then intruding into the human realm in the person of the Son, then continuing in the Church as Spirit.” While this might seem to make sense logically, it does not answer how God can be in these different expressions at the same time as it occurs in Scripture.

Dr. Howell explains that Saint Augustine defined the Trinity quite well: “God is a community, loving together so profusely that we are the overflow of their passion, that we find ourselves drawn into their fellowship.” God is some kind of three-in-one community of Father, Son and Holy Spirit and each and everyone of us are asked, invited and encouraged to put our very lives in the midst of them. In our Scripture passage for today, we find Isaiah himself caught up in a holy vision, experiencing a calling to act for and speak for God in the world. This radical vocation can only make sense if God walks alongside us. In a way, the Trinity is the most logical expression of how God can at once be “up in heaven,” while also right here among us even in the midst of our hearts.

~Mike Holly

The Word

Isaiah 6:1-8

In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lofty; and the hem of his robe filled the temple. Seraphs were in attendance above him; each had six wings: with two they covered their faces, and with two they covered their feet, and with two they flew. And one called to another and said:

“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts;
the whole earth is full of his glory.”

The pivots on the thresholds shook at the voices of those who called, and the house filled with smoke. And I said: “Woe is me! I am lost, for I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips; yet my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts!”

Then one of the seraphs flew to me, holding a live coal that had been taken from the altar with a pair of tongs. The seraph touched my mouth with it and said: “Now that this has touched your lips, your guilt has departed and your sin is blotted out.” Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I; send me!”