Sermon Trinity 1 (June 23, 2019) Fr. Michael Cawthon
“Christ Church” has entered into a season a time of spiritual growth.
And the Collect today tells us:
“we can do no good thing without (God)”
and we are to be in His “will and deed.”
The Epistle reminds us that God “hath given us of his Spirit”
and that we are to come willingly and completely.
In scripture we read that we should
“Fear Not” the transformation of our lives
For there is no “fear in love”
as “perfect love – castest out fear.”
We read in the Gospel (16th chapter of St. Luke)
Of Jesus telling the story of “The rich man and Lazarus”
which ends with Abraham saying:
“if they hear not Moses and the prophets,
neither will they be persuaded,
though one rose from the dead.”
So we are warned that:
“closed eyes and hardened hearts”
will block God’s own revelation of Himself as revealed in Holy Scripture.
These words from Abraham, are perfect for the start of the Trinity Season
For this is the season that we delve into the teachings of Christ through Holy Scripture which contains:
“all things necessary to salvation
and whatever is not read in Scripture,
nor may be proved thereby,
is not to be required…(then and now)”
As Jesus sits “on the right hand of the Father,”
it is the Holy Ghost that guides and directs the Church of Christ.
Many today ignore this “Church of Christ;” seeking other joys and comforts of this world void of Jesus Christ.
Oh, many in the world are OK with this Jesus fellow, for he seems like a nice guy…
but they do not want nothing of His Christhood
(through whom only is salvation.)
Although it was Jesus who told us (Jhn 10:9)
I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved.”
And just to insure no confusion of words (Jhn 14:6) it is He who also said:
“I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”
And yet, like the “rich man,”
many avoid His teachings,
and live a life outside of His will
and, who like the “rich man” will ask, at the end for a remake.
How often have these words been said (?):
“well, if I only / would have known.”
My dear friends, this is
a perfect time
and to heal the wounds which are mostly self-inflicted – usually by the tongue,
and to address conflicts and concerns within our own lives.
The Church walked with you, for the past six months, through the LIFE OF CHRIST,
now it will continue its mission
as it TEACHES,
giving you His words and telling of His deeds
through the Holy Scripture.
St. Michael the Archangel will assist you
and help you grow in True Christian Faith.
SO, I plead with you: to assist His Church in its mission.
Every one of us needs to become more active in our spiritual growth.
Often, we speak often of loving God with the heart, soul, and mind;
Well, this love requires our participation,
and without participation
our love will not grow.
THE IMPORTANCE OF GROWTH FOR US
AND THE WORLD AROUND US
we know not which way to go,
nor do we even understand
who we are.
Christians seek a Loving God: well, we have one.
Not one who simply wishes you to be happy in our own little special way,
but one that becomes a “consuming fire” within our lives,
a God as persistent as an artist’s love for his work.
Many struggle and sometimes have enormous problems, within their lives,
and it is especially at these times
that we need to hear and understand the words of Jesus Christ:
“Apart from me you can do nothing (Jh15:5)
AND WE MUST HEAR HIS REASSURANCE
“I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.”
Unfortunately, many seek their own progress IN THEIR OWN WAY;
totally independent and unaided by God (“for we know what is best!”)
any have a false understanding of even the basics of authentic humanism;
of having any values and goodness,
as the world emphasizes and promotes as prime importance:
which emphasizes human needs,
all by using human rationality.
Rather than seeing or seeking divine or supernatural guidance,
many seek the solace within their own minds.
Not understanding, that we can
we gain an understanding and realize
that we are called
to be part of God’s family,
as His sons and daughters.
When this truth is realized and accepted it creates a new vision of
Ourselves, and for our lives.
As Children of God we are much more than just a biological being
comprised of molecules (created by some accidental “big bang”;
we are part of God’s Creation and as such:
each one of you are unique,
each one of you are precious,
each is connected to the other (for we do pray OUR FATHER,)
each one of you are so special
in so many ways.
Each of you are loved by God.
If we fail to see this, then we will never be complete.
We will never find that “Peace” for which we pray each Sunday.
This lack of knowledge of God’s love leads the world into darkness.
This darkness is:
A world of an: i de o log i cal rejection of God,
a world full of atheist thought which promotes an indifference to fairness and truth;
a world seemingly oblivious of its Creator,
which then becomes oblivious to moral values.
And it is this ignorance of God, which creates an aversion to normality or any kind of order,
which eventually creates and leads to an inhuman humanism
(void of goodness and full of hate.)
Only with an Absolute, only with God – The Father, Son and Holy Ghost
will this world build and sustain a stable world,
without falling prey to fashionable and popular movements of the day.
Our divisions must stop and we must become truly One in Christ.
Let us re-entrench ourselves;
making our lives “to come alive” again
through the faith of our Fathers.
A faith of unity as found
within the historic interpretations of Holy Scripture,
and an early church which
within their and thus our lives.
We must move the world away from an indifference of attitudes,
to a Faith ignited by those “tongues of Fire” from above.
As branches of His vine (of Jesus Christ) let us be nourished and enriched
by His Word and Sacraments.
The world desperately needs a foundation, it needs you!
Let the Joy of Christ overcome any fear of sufferings – Be not Afraid The hour cometh and now is….