Angela V. Askew

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Sermons and Bible Studies

Give Therefore…, Proper 24 (A) – 2011

October 16, 2011

“Give therefore to the emperor the things that are the emperor’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” Generally quoted in its King James version, “Render unto Caesar,” this statement somehow comes easily adrift from its gospel moorings and is usually cited in support of political theories, from tax reforms to freedom of religion […]

The Lectionary Readings Begin…, Lent 3 (A) – 2011

March 27, 2011

The lectionary readings begin with our ancestors being led by Moses through the wilderness, on the journey from slavery in Egypt toward an unknown Promised Land. Memories of the long wilderness period in ancient Israel’s life are prominent throughout the Hebrew scriptures. There are many times when, as at the end of today’s psalm, Psalm […]

A Strange and Complex Story…, Proper 9 (C) – 2010

July 04, 2010

Today’s reading from the Second Book of Kings presents us with a strange and complex story. The main characters are the Aramean warrior Naaman, who has what our ancestors called œleprosy; and the prophet Elisha of Israel, chosen successor to Elijah, who eventually heals Naaman. The King of Aram and the King of Israel both […]

Even Listening Attentively…, Proper 22 (C) – 2010

October 03, 2010

Even listening attentively to Paul’s second letter to Timothy, we are probably not going to want to go the distance with Paul when he invites Timothy to “join with me in suffering for the gospel … relying on the power of God.” It’s really easy to hear “Join with me in suffering” and then just […]

One of the Most Remarkable…, Proper 5 (C) – 2010

June 06, 2010

One of the most remarkable features of the First Book of Kings is the collection of stories featuring the prophet Elijah. The first of these comes after the rather generalized anecdotes about the royal house of kings following the death of Solomon. Without exception these monarchs “did what was displeasing to the Lord,” and then […]

As We Turn Our Faces, Lent 5 (C) – 2010

March 21, 2010

As we turn our faces now toward Palm Sunday and Holy Week, we are given this last Sunday in Lent to ponder God’s gift of generosity and what that generosity means in our lives with Him and one another. We may start by looking at the family of Mary and Martha of Bethany, with their […]

Philip the Deacon Was…, Easter 5 (B) – 2009

May 10, 2009

Philip the Deacon was one of the seven appointed deacons Luke mentions in the sixth chapter of Acts, and he is perhaps more properly thought of as Philip the Evangelist. His preaching mission in Samaria not only brought the followers of Simon Magus to be baptized as followers of Jesus, but also converted the magician […]

At First Sight…, Epiphany 5 (B) – 2009

February 08, 2009

At first sight, it may seem odd that the lectionary offers us a reading from Isaiah that is all about God the cosmic creator and giver of power, and then there is a reading from Mark’s gospel that includes the small scene of Jesus’ healing Simon Peter’s mother-in-law. How does the might, majesty, dominion, and […]

At First Reading…, Easter 6 (A) – 2008

April 27, 2008

At first reading, the words of Jesus in this passage from John are not very inspiring. “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” It is that little word “if.” From our grandparents down to our grandchildren, we have all lived with or kept company with people who talk as though their love for […]

We Often Hear Jacob’s Name…, Proper 24 (C) – 2007

October 21, 2007

“I will not let you go unless you bless me.” — Genesis 32:26 We often hear Jacob’s name in church. He is third in that list of three patriarchs whose names identify the God we are worshipping: “God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob,” and sometimes we add “God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.” […]

The Vision of Jesus’ Transfiguration, The Transfiguration – 2007

August 06, 2007

The vision of Jesus’ transfiguration occurs in all three synoptic gospels. In the Sunday lectionary, we get one of these versions on the last Sunday of Epiphany each year before we go into Lent. We are given Luke’s version every year on this day, the Feast of the Transfiguration. Liturgically, the vision comes embedded in […]

Wisdom Hath Builded…, Proper 15 (B) – 2006

August 20, 2006

“Wisdom hath builded her house, she hath hewn out her seven pillars.” The King James language would have been familiar to Lawrence of Arabia when he titled his long and idiosyncratic memoirs of the Middle East “The Seven Pillars of Wisdom.” In Proverbs 9, the reference to the seven pillars is probably an allusion to […]

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Christopher Sikkema


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