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John T. Ball

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Advent: The Call To Holiness -- 1 Thessalonians 3:9-13 -- John T. Ball -- First Sunday of Advent - C -- 2006
Anytime we center on First Thessalonians in our devotional reading or in a study group or read a pas
Advent: A Wider Context -- Philippians 1:3-11 -- John T. Ball -- Second Sunday of Advent - C -- 2006
The congregation at the Macedonian city of Philippi was the first church established by Paul in Euro
Advent: An Irrational Sense Of Peace -- Philippians 4:4-7 -- John T. Ball -- Third Sunday of Advent - C -- 2006
We are always touched by newspaper or media stories of people who have come through some terrible ex
Advent: Jesus, The Suffering Savior -- Hebrews 10:5-10 -- John T. Ball -- Fourth Sunday of Advent - C -- 2006
This is our final Sunday in Advent.
Christmas Eve/Day In A Minor Key -- Titus 2:11-14 -- John T. Ball -- The Nativity of our Lord - C -- 2006
One of the best things in the modern church is the creation of our Common Lectionary.
Our Christmas Gift -- Colossians 3:12-17 -- John T. Ball -- First Sunday after Christmas Day - C -- 2006
Since the 1600s, in a historical period called the "Enlightenment," scholars have been studying the
Two For The Price Of One -- Ephesians 3:1-12 -- John T. Ball -- Epiphany of the Lord - C -- 2006
Today is an important day in the life of the world and the life of the church.
Getting The Complete Understanding Experience -- Acts 8:14-17 -- John T. Ball -- The Baptism of our Lord | Epiphany 1 | Ordinary Time 1 - C -- 2006
Many times we settle for lives and experiences that are limited and incomplete.
You Can't Whistle The Finale From Beethoven's Fifth Symphony! -- 1 Corinthians 12:1-11 -- John T. Ball -- Epiphany 2 | Ordinary Time 2 - C -- 2006
Halford Luccock, onetime professor of homiletics at Yale Divinity School, told of going to a childre
Who's Going To Play Second Horn? -- 1 Corinthians 12:12-31a -- John T. Ball -- Epiphany 3 | Ordinary Time 3 - C -- 2006
I know someone who achieved a modest excellence in playing the French horn in his high school days.
When They Are Gathered At The Chancel -- 1 Corinthians 13:1-13 -- John T. Ball -- Epiphany 4 | Ordinary Time 4 - C -- 2006
We have all witnessed this scene: the bride and groom are standing at the altar of the church surrou
The Good News Of Christ -- 1 Corinthians 15:1-11 -- John T. Ball -- Epiphany 5 | Ordinary Time 5 - C -- 2006
Now I would remind you, brothers and sisters, of the good news....
You Can't Undo Appomattox -- So Let's Get On With It! -- 1 Corinthians 15:12-20 -- John T. Ball -- Epiphany 6 | Ordinary Time 6 - C -- 2006
There are some things that once begun, cannot be undone.
When Arlington National Cemetery Is Full -- 1 Corinthians 15:35-38, 42-50 -- John T. Ball -- Epiphany 7 | Ordinary Time 7 - C -- 2006
The honored dead from our fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq have created a problem for Arlington Nati
When Truth Comes Via An Invalid Argument -- 1 Corinthians 15:51-58 -- John T. Ball -- Epiphany 8 | Ordinary Time 8 - C -- 2006
Sometimes truth comes to us by way of an invalid argument or perspective.
We're On Our Way, Baby -- 2 Corinthians 3:12--4:3 -- John T. Ball -- Transfiguration Sunday - C -- 2006
Today is the Sunday when we celebrate the Transfiguration of Jesus, a moment in his ministry when up
Palm/Passion Sunday And Today's Faith -- Philippians 2:5-11 -- John T. Ball -- Passion Sunday - B -- 2005
In the slaughter of World War I, 1914-1918, a whole generation of European men went to their deaths.
The Word Behind The Text -- John 6:1-21 -- John T. Ball -- Proper 12 | Ordinary Time 17 - B -- 2005
Entering her office, the Reverend Ashley Baker-Campbell noticed her secretary was paging her: "Sally
Finding Jesus -- John 6:24-35 -- John T. Ball -- Proper 13 | Ordinary Time 18 - B -- 2005
Martin Hanford is the author of several popular children's books featuring "Waldo," a dapper little
Jesus -- The Bread Guy -- John 6:35, 41-51 -- John T. Ball -- Proper 14 | Ordinary Time 19 - B -- 2005
In the Gospel of John, Jesus is often the "Bread Guy." Here he is different from the Jesus of Matthe
Resisting Jesus -- John 6:51-58 -- John T. Ball -- Proper 15 | Ordinary Time 20 - B -- 2005
Sometimes people have difficulty understanding Jesus, or say they do.
The Unsuccessful Jesus -- John 6:56-69 -- John T. Ball -- Proper 16 | Ordinary Time 21 - B -- 2005
John 6:56-69 is a great passage from John's Gospel.
Time For A Minimalist Faith -- Mark 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23 -- John T. Ball -- Proper 17 | Ordinary Time 22 - B -- 2005
Some years ago, a San Francisco author who often worked as a stevedore on the city's docks, wrote,
A Healing Ministry For The Modern Church -- Mark 7:24-37 -- John T. Ball -- Proper 18 | Ordinary Time 23 - B -- 2005
The mission and ministry of Jesus was preaching, teaching, and healing.
Generosity As The Clue To Life -- Mark 8:27-38 -- John T. Ball -- Proper 19 | Ordinary Time 24 - B -- 2005
All the great founders of our religious traditions offer secrets to the good life.

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Reading Past The Semicolon -- John 1:29-42, 1 Corinthians 1:1-9, Isaiah 49:1-7, Psalm 40:1-11 -- C. David Mckirachan, John T. Ball -- Epiphany 2 | Ordinary Time 2 - A -- 2008
Contents What's Up This Week "Reading Past the Semicolon" by John Ball
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Transfiguration
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Ash Wednesday
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First Sunday in Lent - A
Sandra Herrmann
The scriptures for today bind together the beginning of sin in the world, our salvation from sin, and Jesus’ own vulnerability to the temptation of the devil. We see that the devil is very clever (or that we can be very clever in fooling ourselves about our motives and the possible ramifications of our attitudes and actions).  
First Sunday in Lent - A
Bethany Peerbolte
Jesus sets the bar high by resisting temptation even from the imagination of the devil. To show just how amazing that accomplishment is this lesson will put temptation in each kids’ hands. You may have seen the videos of kids in a room alone with a marshmallow. They are challenged to not eat the marshmallow then left alone in the room. The kids obviously struggle with the temptation to eat the marshmallow. For this lesson you can use marshmallows or Oreos, both are relatively allergen free.

The Immediate Word

First Sunday in Lent - A
Dean Feldmeyer
Mary Austin
Ron Love
Christopher Keating
Thomas Willadsen
George Reed
Bethany Peerbolte
For March 1, 2020:
  • Right, Wrong, Whatever by Dean Feldmeyer — The fruit of the forbidden tree in the Eden story represents more than disobedience; it represents moral responsibility and Adam and Eve are hungry for it.
  • Second Thoughts: What Happens in the Silence by Mary Austin — Lent’s invitation is to love the quiet the way Jesus does, and to meet up with him there.

Emphasis Preaching Journal

First Sunday in Lent - A
Sandra Herrmann
The scriptures for today bind together the beginning of sin in the world, our salvation from sin, and Jesus’ own vulnerability to the temptation of the devil. We see that the devil is very clever (or that we can be very clever in fooling ourselves about our motives and the possible ramifications of our attitudes and actions).  
First Sunday in Lent - A
Ron Love
Bonnie Bates
Frank Ramirez
Mark Ellingsen
Bill Thomas
Psalm 32
Ash Wednesday - A
Mark Ellingsen
Ash Wednesday is time to stress our sorrow for sin and the way out, a chance to stimulate our awareness of sin as well as the need for and urgency of repentance, along with a Word of God’s forgiveness.

Joel 2:1-2,12-17
Ash Wednesday - A
Mark Ellingsen
Ron Love
Bill Thomas
Bonnie Bates
Frank Ramirez
Joel 2:1-2,12-17 
With the Presidential Primaries starting to shift into high gear, it is time for Americans to get serious about politics and the future of our nation, to seek to right the nation’s wrongs. For John Calvin this lesson is a message of urgency that we need.  He wrote:

The object of the narrative then, is to make the people sensible, that it was now no time for taking rest... (Calvin’s Commentaries, Vol.XIV, p.44)

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First Sunday in Lent - A
Bethany Peerbolte
Jesus sets the bar high by resisting temptation even from the imagination of the devil. To show just how amazing that accomplishment is this lesson will put temptation in each kids’ hands. You may have seen the videos of kids in a room alone with a marshmallow. They are challenged to not eat the marshmallow then left alone in the room. The kids obviously struggle with the temptation to eat the marshmallow. For this lesson you can use marshmallows or Oreos, both are relatively allergen free.
Ash Wednesday - A
Bethany Peerbolte
Lent can be an odd time for church kids. They are intuitive and can sense that something has changed. If we do not seek to explain why the mood and tone of the community has changed it can be a scary time. We talk more about death, especially Jesus dying, so we need to prepare kids for what is coming.

Say something like:

StoryShare

First Sunday in Lent - A
David O. Bales
Contents
"Thorough Temptation Of The Thoroughly Human" by David O. Bales
"One Man" by David O. Bales



Thorough Temptation of the Thoroughly Human
by David O. Bales
Matthew 4:1-11
Ash Wednesday - A
Peter Andrew Smith
John knocked at the door and waited. His heart was pounding in his chest and he was sweating. He wouldn’t be surprised if Suzy slammed the door into his face. What he had done to her, what he had done to their marriage, was simply unforgivable. His heart leapt when the door started to open and he froze when Suzy’s father, Mark, stood before him. From the look on his father-in-law’s face there was no doubt that he knew what John had done.

The Village Shepherd

First Sunday in Lent - A
Janice B. Scott
We in the West have an interesting culture in which we quite like to be shocked. Many of us enjoy films which are shocking to a greater or lesser degree, and it sometimes seems to be that the higher the rating, the more popular the film. Even huge natural or man-made disasters have a worrying degree of entertainment value in the way they are presented to us over and over again on our television screens. We meanwhile sit in our armchairs munching our chocolates feeling scandalised or shocked or disturbed, but seldom switching off the set.

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Ash Wednesday - A
Elizabeth Achtemeier
Sometime between 500 and 350 B.C., post-exilic Israel experienced a devastating locust plague, followed by a drought. That experience is described in Joel chapter 1. And certainly the people suffered under the dreadful effects of those disasters. But the message of the prophet Joel -- prompted not by the natural disasters, but given him as a revelation from the Lord -- is that the Israelites face a still more terrible disaster if they do not repent and return to their God. "The day of the Lord is coming, it is near" (2:1).

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