Tag Archives: Harry Morgan

TWO INTERPRETATIONS OF MATTHEW 9:14-17 – Sermon

Two Interpretations of Matthew 9:14-17 – Sermon

based on a sermon by Harry Morgan.

prayer and fasting

Sunday’s sermon, based on Matthew 9:14-17, talks about fasting, and tells two parables.

Then John’s disciples came and asked him, “How is it that we and the Pharisees fast often, but your disciples do not fast?”

Jesus answered, “How can the guests of the bridegroom mourn while he is with them? The time will come when the bridegroom will be taken from them; then they will fast.

“No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch will pull away from the garment, making the tear worse.  Neither do people pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the skins will burst; the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved.” (Matthew 9:14-17 NIV)

Harry first talked about the Pharisees, reviewing last week’s lesson that Jesus requires mercy not sacrifice.

He talked to us about the Pharisees’ tradition of fasting where they made a big show of this practice. He even had a picture of Pharisees with long faces showing how much pain they were in. He asked, “Would you want to join these guys?”

Instead, Jesus said to enjoy Him and feast with Him while He was on earth. There would be a time for mourning and fasting when He was gone.

Then Jesus tells us two parables:

        1. Putting new unshrunk cloth on old material
        2. Pouring new wine into old wine skins

Harry said there are two theological interpretations on these parables:

 Out with the Old and in with the New:

wineskin wikipedia

We resist change and innovation. We don’t like renovations. Some people like the “same old, same old” [my words].

From Charisma Magazine there are three painful steps to make this renovation:

  1. Fear of Change: If we don’t change we will be in bondage. “Don’t park when God is calling you forward.” (tweet this)
  2. Defy Traditions: To move forward we need to be willing to defy traditions. “God is with the courageous few who are willing to blaze a new path into unreached territory.”
  3. Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal new strategies: “If the work of transforming the church is not totally led by the Holy Ghost, then our changes will be shallow and our impact will be pitiful.”

And the second interpretation is:

Mature the new gently so it can appreciate and renew the old:

Harry spoke of seeing value of the old traditions, hymns. We need to respect the past.

Then he left us to figure it out for ourselves. But he said he sees value in both interpretations. Today we had a contemporary service in which we also sang an old hymn. Harry showed us there is power of the Spirit in the past as well as in the present.

He left us with these words:

“We are Christ’s witnesses to reach the world around us. Let us be graceful in our approach.”

After reading the article from Charisma Magazine I like the J.L. Grady’s conclusion:

“I believe the Lord wants to unleash a gushing river of new wine into the church today, but He is directing us to prepare our wineskins. What is old must be renewed by the Spirit, what is outdated must be remodeled, and what is ineffective must be replaced. God wants to do a new thing. Don’t resist it.”

JanisCox-photo2web

Janis is the author of the award winning children’s book, Tadeo Turtle, published by Word Alive Press. Available in Kindle Format, in bookstores, online and from her website. Curriculum available upon request. Janis also is a contributor to Hope Stream Radio. Join her on Tuesdays and Saturdays.

Tadeo-Turtle-Cover-large-web

You can find her on Facebook, and Twitter. Tadeo has his own Facebook Page.

 

 

 

WHAT IS GOD’S REQUIRED WORK? – sermon

What is God’s Required Work?

The work of God is this – to believe in the One He has sent.

A review of a sermon given by Harry Morgan

Based on John 6:28-48

People in the crowd were conducting a type of interview of Jesus. They were trying to give Him hard questions.

Then they asked him, “What must we do to do the works God requires?”

Harry asked what we might have answered for Jesus.

        1. the 10 commandments
        2. love God and love others
        3. seek justice
        4. mercy
        5. forgiveness

But the answer:

Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”

We ONLY have to believe that Jesus is God. That’s it.

As C.S. Lewis explained in Mere Christianity, there are only 3 possibilities for who Jesus really is:

        • A Lunatic
        • An Evil Man
        • He is Lord
Lewis says:
I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: “I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept his claim to be God.” That is the one thing we must not say.
A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic — on the level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else he would be the Devil of Hell.
You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God, but let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.

 

Those who say Jesus is a great human teacher – that is nonsense. A man would not say these things unless he were a lunatic or an evil man. So  – HE IS LORD.

Belief means more than just believing someone; it means actually putting our trust in someone.

To Believe in Jesus We Need to Know 3 Things:

  1. Jesus is Invisible so our trust must be that He is REAL, ALIVE. We believe in the Resurrection – the whole thing.
  2. It is all by the grace of God – it is a gift from God. God gave it to us.
  3. It is a CHOICE. It is our decision whether we follow Him or not – each day, each minute.

Our Work is this – TO BELIEVE IN JESUS

Why would we do this?

If we have deeper thoughts and questions such as:

        • What is Eternity?
        • Why am I here? Why do I exist? What is the point of life?
        • Is forgiveness needed in my life? By God?
        • Do I need deep healing for my soul?

Jesus said I am the bread of life. We can have eternal life – which is LIFE with GOD – we can have that – here on earth – right now.

Let’s taste and enjoy life with Jesus – Now and forever.

Hoping that you join me by subscribing to this blog. Please put your email into the box at the top right. You can also reach me at Janis Cox.

Love to hear your comments.

 

 

3 WAYS HOW TO GO AND LEARN MERCY – Sermon

3 Ways how to Go and Learn Mercy

by Harry Morgan

King Solomon - which baby?

What is mercy? Whose baby is this?

Harry started his sermon reminding us of the story of the argument over a baby – who was the rightful mother; how Solomon knew that the real mother would show mercy and not let her child die.

“The woman whose son was alive was deeply moved out of love for her son and said to the king, “Please, my lord, give her the living baby! Don’t kill him!” (1 Kings 3:26 NIV).

Mercy is:

“compassionate or kindly forbearance towards an enemy or someone under one’s power”

In other words, mercy is “cutting you some slack”.

Jesus says:

“It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick.  But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners” (Matthew 9:12-13 NIV).

Then the message hit home with these words:

Do you say? “I am glad I am not like that Pharisee.”

Do you compare yourself to others? Do we compete? Jobs? Money? Homes? Do we like to feel better than others? Am I smarter? better behaved? have a higher education? understand Scripture better?

Oh I have – I do. Instead Harry said we need to all be in the same boat because we are all equal in God’s eyes.

Do we do the same at church? Are we mediators for God? Are we helping others into the mercy of God? Or do we say what is she doing in “my pew”? Or why is that baby crying? Or what is that long-haired kid doing in my church?

So Harry gave us 3 ways to Go and Learn mercy:

1. Review the Mercy of God:

      • we are fallen, needy and sinful
      • we have arrogance, selfishness and pride
      • God is love
      • Christ died for all of us so we could be totally forgiven
      • God hates the “sin” but loves the “sinner”

2. To Understand that we are not here to Control other People’s Lives:

      • there is a long history of this control in the church
      • we tend to put glory into our flesh (our power, our wisdom)
      • instead we need to worship the Spirit of God
      • we need to meditate on the mercy of our God

3. Pray that we might Discern the Difference between Mercy and Sacrifice:

      • this will help us not burn out
      • it will get us back to Jesus, the well of life – our Saviour
      • don’t get caught up in “busyness” – instead draw from the well of God and use mercy
      • pray you can “pay it forward”

 

 

HOW AND WHY DO WE CONSTRUCT COMMUNITY?

How and Why do we Construct Community?

Sermon for Sunday July 1, 2012 by Harry Morgan

Canada - Kanata - community

Canada means “community”.

 

Using Canada Day as a lead in, Harry asked us if we knew why Canada was named CANADA? Do you know?

Canada in the Iroquois tongue, “Kanata”, meant village, settlement or community.

We took at look at the reasons for needing a community.

      • The desire to live together for safety, security, and trade.
      • We needed laws or agreements to make sure we worked well together.

But besides needs we also want community. There is a deep desire in us to join with others.

God has built into our hearts a desire to be with people who have common causes. He named political associations, general associations, service clubs, band and teams as some examples.

Then there is the CHURCH.

Church as a Community

Church as a Community

Jesus came to rebuild the disconnect between God and His people. God is all about relationship – between Him and us. Jesus came as a human to identify with us, but also to pay the penalty for our sin so that we can be in a loving relationship with God.

When we get into this LOVE relationship with God we can’t help but want to love others.

Apostle John says:

“Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen” (1 John 4:20, NIV).

The Church Community:

There is no community like a church community. Our common goal is Jesus – but we come with many differences. Nothing is as deep as a church community. It is a prototype of the Kingdom to come – but we still struggle here on earth. But in church we can learn to work through our differences for a common goal – Jesus.

Harry then unpacked our Scripture from Romans 12:9-13.

Love must be sincereHate what is evil; cling to what is good.  Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.  Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality” (Romans 12:9-13 NIV). [my bolding]

Here are some highlights:

Be sincere:

Jesus hated pretension – remember the “woe you Pharisees”. He wants us to be sincere and authentic.

Hate evil:

Sometimes as Canadians we are too tolerant of wrongs. We are to seek justice and make changes to our community promote that justice. And stop being negative unless you are willing to do something about it.

Be devoted:

Love does NOT insist on its own way.

Serve:

A community heals as well as builds up. We learn to serve one another.

Be joyful:

Have spiritual fervour. Be filled with the Holy Spirit

Share:

Practice hospitality.

These are radical principles for loving each other in community. This is what church could look like.

What are you doing to strengthen your church community? How is God leading you to serve others?

Another Scripture that I love, from Micah has the same idea – similar words.

“He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly with your God” (Micah 6:8 NIV).

You might like other posts. Community. A little Oil.

WHO IS THIS JESUS? – sermon

Who is this Jesus?

“Then he got into the boat and his disciples followed him. Suddenly a furious storm came up on the lake, so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!”

He replied, “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm.

The men were amazed and asked, “What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!” (Matthew 8:23-27 NIV)

Based on a sermon by Harry Morgan

Small fishing Boat

Fishing on the Sea of Galilee?

After Harry set us up in the Sea of Galilee by showing us pictures of the sea, the men in a small fishing boat and showing us how that sea is about the size of Lake Simcoe, I could feel the tension of the disciples in the small boat while they were in that storm.

The storm on the Sea of Galilee

“Lord, save us. We are going to drown.”

One day my husband and I went out on Lake Simcoe in our motorboat, after coming down the quiet, serene Trent canal. We entered the lake only to find that the winds and the waves were vicious. Not being a great sea person I wanted to turn back to the calm of the canal.

Not my hubby – he set out full speed when he saw a large yacht heading across. We caught up to that boat and spent the next couple of hours following in their wake while they headed across Lake Simcoe. Believe me … I prayed. But I did stay calm.  Not calm enough to take a picture, though.

The calm of the canal

The calm before the storm.

We had life jackets available and we had Jesus. The disciples had no life jackets and were not sure of the power of Jesus.

The disciples said, “Lord, save us. We are going to drown.” They called out to him but were unsure what He could do.

Jesus calmed the winds and the waves.

That day the disciples grew in their faith. They concluded, “What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!”

We can use this story as a parallel to our lives. The Lord allows storms to happen so we can grow in our faith. We face a variety of storms and they do happen without warning.

Personal storms of sickness, heartache, family problems, financial stresses, depression and jobs – all of these can bring stormy emotions.

Our society itself is in turmoil – the markets unsettled; the European countries challenged; the United States still suffering from the housing and debt crisis.

And even Christ’s church is facing a storm – there is a societal shift away from “church”. Back in the 60s people asked why we were not in church? Now they ask why we go to church?

Does that mean we give up? No – we press on. We do all that we can do and leave the rest to God.

Let’s marvel at how Christ can calm the winds and the waves – how we can find peace when we trust in Him.

You might also like Trust and Calm in the Midst of a Storm.

Please let me know your thoughts in the comments section below.

BLESSED BE – Sunday’s Sermon

Blessed Be

I have called 2012 the Year of Trust. In this year I am focusing on trusting God – really.

I have found it interesting that since I made that statement – how many times I see this word, TRUST, in my reading of Scripture, in sermons, in Bible studies and in conversation.

Last week Brian Plouffe spoke on Trust.

This week my home minister, Harry Morgan, spoke about the Sermon on the Mount – the “Blessed Be”. His theme was Build your house (life) on rock (Jesus). He called it Buildings.

And then I read from Isaiah this morning.

“Trust in the Lord forever,
for the Lord, the Lord himself, is the Rock eternal” (Isaiah 26:4 NIV).

So

TRUST and ROCK go together – don’t you think?

    1. I did not take notes in yesterday’s sermon for three reasons:
    2. I didn’t have any paper (there was no bulletin yesterday)
    3. Wayne and I took 3 of our grandchildren to be with us in church
    4. There was no Sunday School

My hands were full. The children were wonderful. During the sermon they snacked and one drew with a little pencil I found in the pew (I forgot the crayons, left them at home in the hallway).

But I did listen to the sermon and I will attempt a short recall.

In the Sermon on the Mount Jesus tells us who will be blessed and He goes on to tell us even more of how to live our lives. Sermon on the Mount.

But Jesus also tells us we need to hear (that is hard enough for us to do) but also we need to put what we hear into action. That is even harder to do.

As Harry went through the list, I know which one stood out for me. JUDGE. Am I critical? YES.

Am I becoming more aware that I am critical? … mmm maybe.

Once again as I trust in Jesus He is showing me the way – the BETTER WAY.

When I open my mouth to say something critical I hope I see it and stop myself.

HEAR

BE AWARE

PUT WORDS INTO ACTION

TRUST IN GOD

To top off my morning I read from Oswald Chambers.

He says to take each day as a breathless expectation. And he says to remember:

“when we are rightly related to God, life is full of spontaneous, joyful uncertainty and expectancy” (Oswald Chambers, April 29).

I want my life to be built on sold rock – the Rock of Jesus.

Blessings to all,

Jan

Here is Robin Mark singing Blessed Be Your Name.