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Emphasis Preaching Journal

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David Kalas
Sandra Herrmann

David Coffin
Frank Ramirez
Mark Ellingsen
 
Illustration Writers
Ron Love
Frank Ramirez
Bonnie Bates
Bill Thomas
Mark Ellingsen
M Adryael Tong

Proper 9 | Ordinary Time 14 - A

David Kalas
When I was a boy, I heard a preacher remind his congregation about the true nature of the cross. He observed that we have turned the cross into both a lovely adornment in our sanctuaries and a piece of jewelry for our bodies. It is, for us, a smooth, attractive, gilded thing. But the original cross, he insisted, was nothing like that. The cross that Jesus bore -- and the cross, therefore, that we are invited to take up as his followers -- is harsh and heavy. It is rugged and bloody. It is heavy wood across the back, not silver or gold on a lapel or necklace.

And just as the crosses of the New Testament were not made of silver, neither were the yokes of the New Testament made of sentiment.
Bonnie Bates
Frank Ramirez
Mark Ellingsen
Ron Love
Bill Thomas
M Adryael Tong
Genesis 24:34-38, 42-49, 58-67 or Song of Solomon 2:8-13

Lectionary Commentary and Sermon Illustrations

Emphasis Preaching Journal provides in-depth lectionary-based commentary on lectionary texts, plus thousands of sermon illustrations to help you create riveting sermons.

For over 45 years, Emphasis has provided subscribers with scripturally sound, lectionary-based commentaries and sermon illustrations that connect with the people in the pews.

For each week, Emphasis writers delve into the heart of the lectionary readings, providing you with several fresh, solid ideas -- based squarely on the lectionary texts -- for creating sermons that speak powerfully to your audience. They look for overall themes that hold the readings together. Then, they zero in on the themes and the specific scripture links, suggesting directions for the sermon and worship service. Since a single idea each week may not provide what you are looking for at that particular time, writers suggest several, giving you the opportunity to select the one that matches your specific needs.

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Proper 8 | OT 13
27 – Sermons
100+ – Illustrations / Stories
33 – Children's Sermons / Resources
23 – Worship Resources
24 – Commentary / Exegesis
4 – Pastor's Devotions
and more...
Proper 9 | OT 14
26 – Sermons
100+ – Illustrations / Stories
31 – Children's Sermons / Resources
24 – Worship Resources
20 – Commentary / Exegesis
4 – Pastor's Devotions
and more...
Proper 10 | OT 15
25 – Sermons
100+ – Illustrations / Stories
31 – Children's Sermons / Resources
19 – Worship Resources
22 – Commentary / Exegesis
4 – Pastor's Devotions
and more...
Proper 11 | OT 16
24 – Sermons
100+ – Illustrations / Stories
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4 – Pastor's Devotions
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Plus thousands of non-lectionary, scripture based resources...
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New & Featured This Week

The Immediate Word

Christopher Keating
Thomas Willadsen
Bethany Peerbolte
Ron Love
Mary Austin
George Reed
Dean Feldmeyer
For July 5, 2020:
  • Say You Love Me (But Stay Six Feet Away) by Chris Keating — The voice of the beloved calls to us this week. The lush poetry calls our attention to the pure gift of God, and will likely resonate with communities longing for interaction, mutuality, and the rich abundance of love’s delight.

StoryShare

David O. Bales
Contents
"Mumbling Hope" by David O. Bales
"If It Hadn’t Been Spring" by David O. Bales

Mumbling Hope
by David O. Bales
Genesis 24:34-38, 42-49, 58-67

Phabi and Nahum rode obediently behind Eliezer, tossed rhythmically side to side on their camels. They glanced to one another with knowing looks. Eliezer was mumbling again. “I suppose I could’ve told them the whole story. They were certainly interested. A display of wealth will do that, especially to a fellow like Laban.”

Emphasis Preaching Journal

David Kalas
When I was a boy, I heard a preacher remind his congregation about the true nature of the cross. He observed that we have turned the cross into both a lovely adornment in our sanctuaries and a piece of jewelry for our bodies. It is, for us, a smooth, attractive, gilded thing. But the original cross, he insisted, was nothing like that. The cross that Jesus bore -- and the cross, therefore, that we are invited to take up as his followers -- is harsh and heavy. It is rugged and bloody. It is heavy wood across the back, not silver or gold on a lapel or necklace.
Bonnie Bates
Frank Ramirez
Mark Ellingsen
Ron Love
Bill Thomas
M Adryael Tong
Genesis 24:34-38, 42-49, 58-67 or Song of Solomon 2:8-13

The Village Shepherd

Janice B. Scott
Here in England we're now well into the wedding season, in which many young couples will follow the age old tradition of plighting their troth. Some of them will do so here in Pulham St. Mary church, and several more here in our benefice in South Norfolk.

Although our country has the highest divorce rate in the whole of Europe and is second only to the United States in the world, and although many couples now live together outside marriage, nonetheless marriage is still a very popular institution.

SermonStudio

Schuyler Rhodes
I think one of the best lessons I have learned in ministry is the lesson of win-win. Have you ever heard of win-win? In a world where win-lose situations seem to dominate our interactions, the discovery of the possibility of building scenarios where everyone can benefit, where everyone can, in effect, win, has been an incredible answer to prayer. In church, community, and family life it has been a powerful way forward on numerous occasions. Recently, an experience in negotiations in a sensitive church situation resulted in a win-win, and it was unbelievable.

CSSPlus

Good morning, boys and girls. Does anyone live on a farm or near a farm? (let them answer) What do farmers use today to plow fields and harvest the grain? (let them answer) That's right, tractors. Before farmers used tractors what did they use? (let them answer) That's right, horses. Did you know that farmers also used to use animals called oxen? These animals are like bulls that have horns and are very strong. They can pull a plow easily as long as they worked in pairs. If the oxen didn't work together, it was hard.

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