August 06, 2006

Gordon Stewart - “Casting the net of relationship”

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Sermon Recording: Download


Gordon Stewart spoke on themes found in John 21. John's final chapter tells that heart-warming story of Jesus making breakfast for Peter and friends after their unsuccessful night of fishing. His call “Cast your net on the other side”, and his invitation to them to bring some of the fish to breakfast, highlighted their dependency, but maintained their dignity. Jesus models someone who identifies a need and addresses it. But the story continues. After meeting Peter's needs (food, warm fire, lots of fish to sell), Jesus takes him aside and confronts him, asking the penetrating question three times ("Do you love me"). Peter surely then realized this mirrored his three denials of even knowing, let alone loving Jesus. But rather than rubbing it in, Jesus was in fact offering full opportunity to Peter for healing through confession and reconciliation. Brokenness before God (confronting the truth about ourselves) is the first step towards our being reconciled with God. In spite of Peter's earlier public and crucial denials of Jesus, Jesus now challenges him to resume his role as leader of the disciples, and the very personal commandment "feed my sheep" recalls an earlier dictum, "If you love me, keep my commandments". These stories remind us that Jesus invites each of us to return to the warmth and comfort of his breakfast by a charcoal fire, and that even in our apparent brokenness, God calls us to return and relate to others in so far as we are able. [JEK]


Passage: John 21
Communion: No
Ecumenical or Event:
Potluck Lunch: No
Congregational Meeting: No


Speaker: Gordon Stewart
Worship Leader: Janice Kreider
Song Leader: Ann Marie Neudorf
Pianist: J Evan Kreider
Usher: Peter Neudorf
Zoom Coordinator:
Children's Feature Leader: Karl Brown


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