Thursday, May 21, 2015

The Feast of Pentecost Year B - John 15:26- 27 - 16:4 - 15

John 15:26-16:15
Pastor Kerstin Hedlund (Calvary intern and my former co-pastor) had a favorite phrase about preaching on a text like this. “I got nothing.” There are portions of the Gospel of John that are well loved and easily understood. This isn’t one of them. So how is the world wrong about sin and righteousness and judgement? The world, and that includes most of us, understands sin to be primarily about behavior but the Advocate knows sin is really about belief – or in this case lack of belief. Of course there is behavior that we can label “sinful” but all behavior begins with what one believes. But before you begin to think you can think your way out of behavior that is less than pure the Advocate Spirit convicts the world of thinking that righteousness – that is being at peace with God and oneself – can be accomplished apart from the work of the Christ. In the God so loved the world work of the only Son God reconciled the world to God’s self. (2 Corinthians 5:19) And the judgment that the Advocate announces is that “goodness is stronger the evil, love is stronger than hate. Light is stronger than darkness; life is stronger than death…” (Desmond Tutu) The other thing Pastor Kerstin would say is “that’s all I got.” Amen.  

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