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Sermons by Pastor Kris Dietzen (Page 3)

Pointing to Jesus

John the Baptist is a fitting messenger for the season of Advent, a time for the church to prepare for both the nativity of the Christ and for his second coming. John’s call to repentance in preparation of Jesus’ arrival carries a challenge for us to rid ourselves of everything that obstructs our view. His…

Let’s Talk Resurrection

When the Sadducees encounter Jesus with a technical question, he responds by humanizing and placing divine value upon each character in the Sadducees’ hypothetical scenario. Jesus’ response is about resurrection and about naming people as children of God and of light. The answer Jesus gives the Sadducees is about God, whose presence means life. This…

Holy Hospitality

In the gospel today, Zacchaeus joyfully welcomes Jesus into his home, where Jesus prompts a changed heart and mind in his host and proclaims salvation. All this reveals an undercurrent of hospitality and welcome that propels much of the narrative of the Bible. As in other instances of practiced hospitality, something important changes. Salvation is…

God Be Merciful

We may expect the religious insider to be blessed, the moral person to be right with God. But as is so often the case, Jesus’ parable for today sweeps away conventional expectations. Jesus surprises the disciples and us when he says it’s not the Pharisee but rather the tax collector, that morally suspect, second-class citizen,…

The Righteous Live by Faith

Faith is the theme for today’s readings, but not just any faith. It is a life-transforming faith, one that demonstrates the very presence of God moving, alive, and active in God’s people. In response to Habakkuk’s oracle, the Lord answered him that “the righteous live by their faith” (Hab. 2:4b). But just what does it mean…

Love or Money?

A rich landowner tells his unsatisfactory manager he’s going to fire him. We don’t know how long the employee had to clear his desk, but apparently it was long enough to win friends and influence the people who had accounts with his boss. The manager called them in and reduced their debt. When the boss…

God’s Verbs

Through the lens of the gospel, today’s texts offer a clear identification of God’s work. What is God doing? God is reaching out to the bound-up to proclaim release from captivity. God is lifting up the oppressed. God is satisfying the needs of the afflicted. God raises up foundations. God restores and rebuilds, reconciles and…