Sermons by Rana Khan
Rana examines the opening verses of John 1 describing Jesus as The Word.
John sends his disciples to ask Jesus ‘are you the Messiah or should we expect someone else?’ We don’t know whether John himself had doubts or whether he wanted his disciples to be reassured after his imminent death. They were all expecting the Messiah, but Jesus, instead of simply saying ‘yes, I am he’, gives them the evidence so they can see the truth for themselves.
The prophets of the Old Testament were not popular people. They looked odd, they didn’t say what people wanted to hear, but they were God’s messengers. And although we often associate them with messages of gloom and doom, what they brought was hope – a hope that things could be restored and repaired.
Remembering the high cost of the peace we enjoy today.
Psalm 119 is a masterpiece of Hebrew literature. The section we look at today, verses 129-136, underlines the importance of the Word of God which touches every aspect of our lives. Our calling is to help spread that Word to the very ends of the Earth.
Jacob wrestles with God as he waits to cross the Jabbok River. Sometimes God plants a vision in our hearts and we have to wrestle with God and with our own doubts when we consider how to respond.
Although we refer to Jesus as Prince of Peace, in Luke’s Gospel (Luke 12:49-53) he says he has not come to bring peace but fire and division. How does this apparent contradiction stack up with what we know about Jesus?
Abraham is commended for his faith in believing, in his old age, that God would provide him not just with an heir but with so many descendants that there would be too many to count.
The story of Abraham meeting with the angels shows the importance of hospitality expressing God’s welcome, not to friends and those we know well but to the stranger, the incomer.
What I am commanding you today is not too difficult for you … the word is very near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart so you may obey it. Deuteronomy 30:11-14 The story of the good Samaritan is so familiar that we can easily miss its challenge to us to confront the biases and prejudices we aren’t even aware we live with.
In the early days of the book of Acts, everyone assumed that Jesus had come only to save the Jews. But it soon became clear that this was something entirely new, something for everyone regardless of background, status, religion or ethnicity.
Jesus is the Good Shepherd as we all know. To understand the imagery better we need to know a little more about how shepherds worked in biblical time.