Redeemer Presbyterian Church Sermons
Ruth is a story of redeemers. Ruth teaches us that friendships can change the world (as with Boaz, the kinsman-redeemer), and that we can and must reach across spiritual and cultural barriers to do so (as with Ruth, the hidden redeemer). Both Boaz and Ruth point to Jesus, our true Redeemer. Once we realize that, we can ourselves reach across barriers to engage in spiritual friendships and be true disciples of Jesus.
It is our nature to seek our identity in the praise of others and in the praise of self. But the praise doesn’t last, and we are never satisfied. God has provided, through Jesus’ death, a new identity to all who know him. This new identity is built on Jesus’ performance rather than on our own; we receive the praise that He deserved. The more we know God, the more our new identity is strengthened and our old identity dies away.
All of us are at war with God, whether we admit it or not. Finding peace comes from being shocked by God's love into a new relationship. Being a peacemaker is sharing this good news and letting God’s glory shine out of your life.
The Easter story tells us of a new beginning after disaster - that after death there is life. If you spiritualize the resurrection of Jesus, you will have comfort but not the truth. The message of Easter is that right now, Jesus has flesh and bones. This changes the way you think, the way you live, and the way you feel.
Doubt is a problem that all of us will face before we can come to grips with faith. To deal with our doubts, recognize that they are based on faith assumptions; examine the object of your faith and whether it is trustworthy; and let Jesus' love for you become your reason to have hope.
Religion poses a danger of creating division or intolerance between groups of people. However, the gospel lead us to three things: humble service, reconciling behavior that is neither patronizing nor self-righteous, and a love toward people who hold different beliefs than we do.