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  • The Wonder Of It All

    Contributed by Chris Tiller on Jan 3, 2006
    based on 2 ratings
     | 1,551 views

    God has come to you in a way you can see…in a way you can touch…in a way you can understand. God has come, not to overwhelm you with terror, but to reach out to you with gentleness. Come see the baby. He will show you the way.

    Outside of Bethlehem, every night of the year, for thousands of years, there have been shepherds watching their flocks by night. In that respect, this particular night was no different from any other. At least, it started out no different from any other. Sheep huddled in the cold night air. ...read more

  • Recognition

    Contributed by Chris Tiller on Dec 20, 2005
    based on 54 ratings
     | 5,033 views

    Simeon and Anna recognized Jesus immediately to be the promised Redeemer. How did they recognize him? What can we learn from their recognition of him?

    The very first time John the Baptizer encountered Jesus the Messiah, he recognized him. John was six months in the womb of his mother Elizabeth at the time. Jesus was a mere flicker of cells in Mary’s womb. Do you remember the story? It was the angel Gabriel who gave Mary the news. “Do not ...read more

  • More Than Just A Healing

    Contributed by Chris Tiller on Dec 16, 2005
    based on 8 ratings
     | 2,056 views

    The account of the ten lepers: Grace was extended equally to all ten, but in only one did that grace bring a response of faith. With wild abandon, and gratitude, and excitement, he turned from going through the motions and fell at Jesus’ feet.

    Some texts are just too obvious. Ten lepers were cleansed. One came back and said thanks. Nine did not. The one was commended. The nine were scolded in absentia. Ah...it’s important to write thank-you notes. My mama, your mama, and Miss Manners would be pleased. End of ...read more

  • Joseph

    Contributed by Chris Tiller on Dec 14, 2005
    based on 33 ratings
     | 3,529 views

    Advent is a time of preparation and repentance, and it turns out that Joseph’s story has a few things to teach about those very things.

    Joseph…the husband of Mary. The Bible doesn’t really tell us that much about Joseph. Legend has it that he was an elderly widow. Supposedly that explains why he was able to honor Mary’s virginity during the first months of their marriage and why he quietly disappears from the narrative ...read more

  • A Promise In The Darkness

    Contributed by Chris Tiller on Dec 14, 2005
    based on 85 ratings
     | 13,087 views

    Isaiah the prophet communicated the prophecy about Immanuel to Ahaz. An angel communicated the promise of Jesus to Joseph. Ahaz responded in fear. Joseph responded in trust.

    “The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel.” Most of you are familiar with the story: Joseph had learned that Mary was with child, and he was making plans to divorce her quietly. An angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying to ...read more

  • Much Grace Was Upon Them All

    Contributed by Chris Tiller on Dec 14, 2005
     | 1,197 views

    First, Jesus is alive. Really alive. Abundantly alive. Second, because Jesus is alive, a new community of people is formed-—people who demonstrate the reality and power of the risen Christ in their life together. Real life. Abundant life.

    When Jesus walked the earth—teaching, and preaching, and healing—-strange things happened. Not strange as in Ripley’s Believe It Or Not. More like strange as in counter-intuitive. Strange as in turning upside-down what everyone knew to be true about how the world worked—what was important and ...read more

  • Let's Make A Deal

    Contributed by Chris Tiller on Dec 14, 2005
    based on 7 ratings
     | 4,742 views

    Parable of the dishonest manager: The Kingdom of God works on different principles than we’re used to. Efficiency, practicality, and self-interest are not the core values of the Kingdom. God expects a lot more for us (and from us) than we expect him to.

    There was a rich man. This man was so rich that he didn’t make his own bed. He had a personal maid who did that. He didn’t make his own dinner. He had a personal chef who did that. He didn’t drive his own car. He had a chauffeur who did that. He didn’t balance his own checkbook. He had a ...read more

  • Second Person Of The Trinity

    Contributed by Chris Tiller on Dec 12, 2005
    based on 14 ratings
     | 3,211 views

    What does it mean to say that Jesus is the Second Person of the Trinity? What are some of the errors of understanding that have sometimes confused or deceived people?

    In the midst of his earthly ministry, Jesus asked his disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?” They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” Jesus then asked them, “What about you? Who do you say that I am?” The gospels ...read more

  • Maranatha

    Contributed by Chris Tiller on Dec 11, 2005
    based on 9 ratings
     | 3,938 views

    This passage from Isaiah 64 gives us words to express our longing for God to come down and make the world right (and make us right).

    Today is the first Sunday of Advent. It’s the first Sunday of a new church year. Advent, as was said in the Lighting of the Candles, means coming. Advent signals the coming of Christmas. (Only 28 more shopping days left!) But even more so, Advent signals the coming of Christ. The season of ...read more

  • Highway Construction

    Contributed by Chris Tiller on Dec 11, 2005
    based on 27 ratings
     | 5,033 views

    Repentance is about preparing the way for our Lord, for the King. This Advent sermon uses the metaphor of road work to explore repenting of sin and unforgiveness.

    Today is the second Sunday of Advent. Traditionally, the second Sunday of Advent belongs to John the Baptizer…the one whose job it was to announce the imminent coming of the Christ. In all four Gospels—Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John—the ministry of John the Baptizer prepares the way for the ...read more

  • Giving Thanks

    Contributed by Chris Tiller on Nov 20, 2005
    based on 4 ratings
     | 1,727 views

    Giving thanks loosens the grip of our anxious clenched fists, so that we might let go of ourselves and receive the fullness of God’s Spirit. Five steps toward learning to give thanks.

    A few miles south of downtown Atlanta, away from the tall, shiny, steel and glass buildings, a street corner is occupied by a short, unassuming, old building made of brick and stone. It’s a church building. When I lived in Atlanta, early every weekday morning a line formed outside this building—a ...read more

  • From Fear To Courage To Perseverance

    Contributed by Chris Tiller on Nov 19, 2005
    based on 35 ratings
     | 2,666 views

    Falling deeper in love with Jesus (from knowledge about him, to conviction that he lives, to identification with his suffering) moves us from fear to courage to perseverance.

    This passage in Acts 5 describes the third time that the apostles risked arrest because of their association with Jesus. The first time that the apostles stood and faced arrest, they didn’t… That is, they didn’t stand, they turned and ran. And they didn’t face their opponents, they scattered ...read more

  • Five Short Stories Of Grace

    Contributed by Chris Tiller on Nov 19, 2005
    based on 70 ratings
     | 96,169 views

    Five stories from Old Testament that demonstrate God’s graciousness. (Grace is not just a New Testament concept.)

    In the second century, a hundred years or so after the death of Jesus and the birth of the church, lived a man named Marcion. Marcion was a Christian. Well, not exactly. Marcion called himself a Christian, but he had his own perspective about what that meant, a perspective shared by his ...read more

  • To Each One Grace Has Been Given

    Contributed by Chris Tiller on Nov 19, 2005
    based on 3 ratings
     | 877 views

    If Christ brought you to this congregation, then Christ has given you a special grace to serve in a way that is needed within this congregation.

    Early on in my seminary career, I was asked by a committee charged with my nurture as a fledgling pastor-wannabe about my role models for ministry. “Who,” the committee asked, “did I consider to be an example to follow?” “Who was my role model for ministry?” I guess it was a reasonable ...read more

  • The Magi's Guide To Following A Star

    Contributed by Chris Tiller on Nov 19, 2005
    based on 90 ratings
     | 9,854 views

    God just might give you a star to capture your attention and to guide you. And if you follow that star, everything just might change. An intimate encounter with Jesus has a way of doing that to people.

    I love the story of the magi. There was a time when the magi lived far away from Jesus. They were given a special star to capture their attention and to guide them. They followed the star, and it changed everything. An intimate encounter with Jesus has a way of doing that to people. I love ...read more