Our guest preaching blogger this week is
2009-06-08 by David Howell

Maria Swearingen. Maria attended Baylor University in Waco graduating with a B.A. in Psychology and minoring in Religion.  Maria grew up in the Baptist tradition but is enriched by the breadth and depth of the church ecumenical.  During college, Maria's ever-deepening passion for the local church drew her toward considering seminary and the pastorate as vocation.  She is currently working toward a Master's of Divinity at Duke Divinity School and has recently completed her second year.  She currently serves as the ministry intern at Ridge Road Baptist Church in Raleigh, NC, and is spending the summer teaching/learning at a seminary in Huancayo, Peru.  Writing, is her balm and her poison, bringing both pain and joy in strange, exciting, trans-forming ways.  For her, the Word truly is Flesh.



Trinity Experience
2009-06-05 by David von Schlichten

Instead of a sermon about the Trinity, what if we proclaimed a sermon that was an experience of the Trinity? Paul Wilson's posts below can help us in that direction.

David von Schlichten, Lectionary Blog Moderator





John 3 and the Trinity
2009-06-05 by Paul Wilson

When we as preacher employ Trinitarian ways of speaking, speaking of God in all three persons, we enrich the ways people have of relating to God. So for instance in relation to our John 3 text, we could say something like the following in a sermon: "Just as God was at work when Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness and healed those bitten, God is at work today in Christ through the Holy Spirit. On this day Christ says to you from the cross, “I take the sin out of the soul, the venom out of the snake-bite, the toxin out of the sting, the poison out of the remarks, the anxiety out of the confusion, the anger out of the heartache, the bitterness out of disappointment, the contamination out of the relationship, the fear out of faith, the greed out of the greedy, the hunger out of the hungry, the need out of the needy, and the mortality out of death itself.” 



Why isn't the Trinity mentioned in the Bible?
2009-06-05 by Paul Wilson

Some folks defend their own difficulty with Christianity in terms of the Bible not mentioning the Trinity. True, the Bible does not use the word Trinity. Neither does the Apostle's Creed, though its both its structure and confession is Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Rather what we find in the Bible are ample references to each person of the Trinity. Among the most common textual references to the Trinity, dating back not least to the Second Helvetic Confession of 1561, are Luke 1:35, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be holy; he will be called Son of God"; Matthew 28:19, "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit; and John 15:26, "When the Advocate comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who comes from the Father, he will testify on my behalf".





Trinity
2009-06-04 by Paul Wilson

The Trinity is a difficult topic on which to preach, in part because it may seem to respond to no felt need on the part of the congregation. The preacher can be seen to be scratching a spot that is not itchy. Instead of addressing a felt need, preachers might speak about the Trinity because the people "need to know" certain things about the Christian faith. However a felt need is here, if we listen to our people. They express a need to know God, to know that God cares, to know that God is not a mere voyeur of human pain but actually is involved in human affairs, and that what we see around us is not all there is. Any one of these can be the basis for speaking of Trinity, and can help transform what might be a dull lecture into what is experienced as a vibrant and relevant Word of God. --Paul Scott Wilson





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