This is a collection of the transcripts and audio recordings of sermons from our staff pastors and guest speakers.
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Robert Keefer

Sermon for December 11: Advent Joy

​ Advent Joy Advent III; December 11, 2016 Isaiah 61:1-11 Okay, to lead into the subject, I'll answer a rather trivial question: Why is one candle on the Advent wreath pink? A Sunday School child once said, "Because Mary and Joseph were hoping for a girl." In reality, a tidbit of Christian liturgy. Both Advent and Lent use purple as the seasonal co...
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Robert Keefer

Sermon for November 27: Advent Hope

Robert Keefer - Advent Hope

​ Advent Hope Advent I; November 27, 2016 Daniel 6:6-27 You may already know the story of Daniel in the lions' den and you just heard it read to you, but it's a good story worth retelling. Here's what I'm looking for in the story: reasons for hope. The difference between hope and optimism, I believe, is that if I am optimistic then I simply decide ...
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Robert Keefer

Sermon for November 20: Where Is It Written?

Robert Keefer - Where is it Written?

​ Where Is It Written? Christ the King; November 20, 2016 Jeremiah 31:31-34 "I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts." What a lovely, inspiring notion. If only that day would come. If only we didn't have to have written laws, telling us what speed to drive for the sake of everyone's safety, what you're allowed to put into...
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Robert Keefer

Sermon from November 13: Holy One, Here Am I

Robert Keefer - ​Holy One, Here Am I

​ Holy One, Here Am I Pentecost XXVI (O. T. 33); November 13, 2016 Isaiah 6:1-8 How do you think the Prophet said those words accepting God's call to him?      HERE AM I! SEND ME!      Umm…. Here am I. Send me?      (Look around.) I don't see anybody else here. I'll do it. You can probably think of other...
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Robert Keefer

Sermon for All Saints Sunday: God's Sense of Family

- Robert Keefer - God's Sense of Family

​ God's Sense of Family All Saints; November 6, 2016 Jonah 1:1-17, 3:1-10 I co-taught a class on the Book of Jonah at our Synod School last summer; a major point we emphasized is how very funny the story is. Jesus told some funny stories to drive his ideas home, and the Book of Jonah is one of the funniest stories in the Old Testament. So it should...
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Sara Tonje

Sermon for October 30, 2016

Sara Tonje - Sermon for October 30, 2016 - 10-30-2016.mp3

This is the audio of the Sermon that Rev. Sara Tonje preached on October 30, 2016.
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Robert Keefer

Sermon for October 23: David's House

Robert Keefer - David's House

​ David's House Pentecost XXIII (O. T. 30); October 23, 2016 II Samuel 7:1-17 Before talking about this story, I want to say something about why you should care about it. Two reasons I can think of (you can probably think of others). First, it is a promise to David that is central to how we understand his role in the Bible, and David is a key figur...
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Robert Keefer

Sermon for October 16: Hannah's Song

Robert Keefer - Hannah's Song

​ Hannah's Song Pentecost XXII (O. T. 29); October 16, 2016 I Samuel 1:9-11, 19-20; 2:1-10 The song Hanna sings in I Samuel 2 might have stirred a number of thoughts in you. For those who know the Gospel of Luke very well, you probably noticed how much it sounds like the Song of Mary, called the Magnificat (Luke 1:46b-55). Well, guess where Mary go...
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Robert Keefer

Sermon for October 9: Dancing at the Calf

Artist Name - Robert Keefer - Dancing at the Calf

​ Dancing at the Calf Pentecost XXI (O. T. 28); October 9, 2016 Exodus 32:1-14 I've decided today to go all expository on you: to talk through what was read to you and elaborate on the story. This year we get two pieces of the mighty Exodus story; in the Narrative Lectionary other pieces show up other years. Last week's piece was the Passover and t...
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Sara Tonje

Sermon for October 2, 2016

Sara Tonje - Sermon from October 2, 2016

This is the audio of the Sermon that Rev. Sara Tonje preached on October 2, 2016.
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Robert Keefer

Sermon from September 25: Providence and Grace

Providence and Grace

​ Providence and Grace Pentecost XIX (O. T. 26); September 25, 2016 Genesis 37:3-8, 17b-34; 50:15-21 You heard in the first part of the story how Jacob, also called Israel, favored Joseph over his other sons, and how that got Joseph sold into slavery. If you know the musical Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat , then you know the rest of t...
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Robert Keefer

Sermon for September 18: Faith like Abraham's

Faith Like Abraham's Pentecost XVIII (O. T. 25); September 18, 2016 Genesis 15:1-6 My theology teacher in seminary told us what it means to have faith. He was working in their backyard, and his young son had crawled up onto the roof of the garage. When the son realized that David had seen him, the son cried out, "Daddy, catch me!" and jumped. David...
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Robert Keefer

Sermon for September 11 on Adam & Eve

​ "Where are you?" Pentecost XVII (O. T. 24); September 11, 2016 Genesis 2:4b-7, 15-17; 3:1-9 The Narrative Lectionary, which we are using this year, has four different cycles of readings: one for each Gospel. And the Sunday after Labor Day it always starts at the beginning, but it's not the same beginning every year. One year it is Noah, another y...
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Robert Keefer

Sermon for September 4: Lead us not into temptation

​ ​Note to readers: The version printed differs from the recorded version in several places. I made some changes that morning in response to a news story, but decided to put the original here on our website. "And do not bring us to the time of trial." Pentecost XVI (O. T. 23); September 4, 2016 Luke 11:2-4 I wonder what I can tell you folks about t...
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Robert Keefer

Sermon from August 21: Daily Bread

​ "Give us each day our daily bread." Pentecost XIV (O. T. 21); August 21, 2016 Luke 11:2-4 A lot of what we call the Lord's Prayer is challenging or difficult. But, from our point of view, perhaps the silliest line in the prayer is "Give us this day our daily bread." If you think it through, nothing in that line conforms to the way people think ab...
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Robert Keefer

Sermon for July 31: Job Replies

​ Job Replies Pentecost XI (O. T. 18); July 31, 2016 Job 38:25-27, 41:1-8, 42:1-6 Last week I introduced God's aria at the end of the book of Job: the Lord God sings rapturously from the whirlwind about the morning stars and the sea, and then reflects on sunlight and snow. There is this brief piece (38:25-27) from a long section about the rain (Not...
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Robert Keefer

Sermon from July 24 - "Where were you?"

​ "Where were you?" Pentecost X (O. T. 17); July 24, 2016 Job 31:35-37, 38:1-11 In working with you through the Book of Job this month, I think that I have not done justice to Job's agony. He has experienced great loss. He was wealthy; all his possessions were taken from him. He was healthy; he is suffering from a terrible skin disease. He had a go...
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Robert Keefer

Sermon for July 17: Mortality and Hope

​ Mortality and Hope Pentecost IX (O. T. 16); July 17, 2016 Job 14:7-15, 19:23-27 I remember who wrote the letter, and about when he wrote it, but I can't find it. Given my obsession with saving and organizing, perhaps it was an email. The disadvantage of emails is they are ephemeral: they come and go; they die in the ether. A written letter, howev...
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Robert Keefer

Sermon for July 10: Dare We Talk About It?

​ Dare We Talk About It? Pentecost VIII (O. T. 15); July 10, 2016 Job 4:1-9, 7:11-21 If you did not hear last Sunday's sermon, fear not; I expect that today's will make sense to you anyway. You may wish that it didn't; one of my colleagues recently told me that in his most recent sermon he had managed to offend everyone in the congregation over the...
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Robert Keefer

Sermon for July 3: Job, the Setup

​ Job: The Setup Pentecost VII (O. T. 14); July 3, 2016 Job 1:1-22 This month our worship is going to take us on a quick tour of the Book of Job. A quick tour is sufficient for most of us; those few who really love a great piece of literature might want to read the whole thing. It includes some of the most gorgeous poetry in the Bible, and really d...
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