Time to clear out the Temple: Sermon on John 2:13-22. Third Sunday in Lent. St. Mary the Virgin Anglican Church, Regina. Rev. Nathaniel Athian Deng Mayen.
Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable to you, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer (Psalms 19: 14).
Brothers and sisters, the gospel reading calls us to attune our desires and needs to the Lord, where our salvation comes. It is time to clear out the Temple to set a room in our hearts for the teachings of our crucified and risen Lord, Jesus Christ.
When the rector emailed me the readings for this Third Sunday in Lent, he commented, “Time to clear out the Temple!” This is a great gospel declaration that I would like to keep as the title for the sermon. It is appropriate for the Gospel of John that proclaims the death and resurrection of Jesus in the beginning of the ministry relative to the Synoptic Gospels that narrate the story closer to the end of Jesus’ ministry (Mk. 11:11-19; Matt. 21:12-13; and Luke 19:45-48).
Dear beloved brothers and sisters, the gospel reading today invites us to appreciate our collective identity, the Church as the inheritance of God, in which we find our eternal rest.
Who are you? This is a very common question, especially from the people who want to put others down. It calls into question the whole essence of a person: human ancestry, country of origin, attitude, or ability to react against injustice and oppression…The stakes are even higher and more pressing when you are a foreigner, an immigrant, a refugee, a person with disability, a person of Aboriginal descent, or any other person that is different in the dominant culture, whom a lot of people have little understanding about their identity and loyalty. Jesus Christ takes on all these oppressed identities: He comes down from heaven. He is not of this world. He is a refugee.
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Welcome to the Fifth Sunday after Pentecost in the name of the Father, the Son and Holy Spirit.
Dear brothers and sisters, Apostle Peter invites us to be “hospitable to one another” and “serve one another with whatever gift each of you has received.” (1 Peter 4:9-10)This apostolic and prophetic request for love, compassionate, hospitality and generosity portrays a familiar scene to most of us.
As a nation, we welcome the refugees and asylum seekers to feel comfortable as they integrate into the Canadian society. As individuals, we invite friends and family members, throwing up parties for remembering significant life events, such as birthdays and anniversaries for marriage.
Death is that mystery which transcends human experience and knowledge. Nobody knows a particular instance they may announce their passing, “It is finished!” Let us hold to that thought for a moment because we will revisit it in our discussion about the life of Moses, Paul, Jesus and the Christian saints.
Imagine you are Moses who received the saddest news of your death, that you will not enjoy fruits of liberation: “This is the land I promised on oath to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob when I said, ’I will give it to your descendants.’ I have let you see I’t with your eyes, but you will not cross over into it” (Deut. 34: 4).