James Liggett

The Rev. James Liggett is the retired Rector of St. Nicholas’ Episcopal Church in Midland, Texas. He is a native of Kansas and a graduate of the University of Houston and the Episcopal Divinity School. He has served parishes in Kansas, Texas, and Oklahoma and has been a contributor to Sermons That Work since the 1980’s.

Sermons and Bible Studies

Whose Image?, Proper 24 (A) – 2017

October 22, 2017

I strongly suspect that even a casual familiarity with any of today’s various sources of streaming news would absolutely satiate anyone’s interest in Caesar and Caesar’s taxes—but here they are again. Still, Jesus is being quite non-partisan here, and, although frequently misunderstood, this little story has much to say to any age, including our own. […]

In Trust and Hope, Lent 5 (A) – 2017

April 02, 2017

These long readings from John’s Gospel during Lent have a depth and a power to them that can reach to the very core of our lives. Today we hear about death and new life, about the end of some things, and, perhaps, the beginning of others. Death is always a topic close to home, one […]

The Penultimate, Proper 28 (C) – 2016

November 08, 2016

There are some words that just sound good, that are attractive all by themselves. A great example, which the Gospel reading especially brought to mind, is ‘penultimate’. It’s a fine old Latin word that means ‘next to the last’. Not the last, not the ultimate, but next to that, before that. The penultimate things are not […]

Look to the Lord, Easter 6 (C) – 2016

May 01, 2016

There is something perplexing and difficult at the heart of the Christian faith. This perplexing something is the central value of the Kingdom of God; the primary, identifying characteristic of the Christian Church at its best and the clearest picture we have of our relationship with Jesus and his relationship with us. At the same […]

Wool and Mutton, Easter 4 (B) – 2015

April 26, 2015

The Fourth Sunday of Easter is always Good Shepherd Sunday, and there are always sheep everywhere you look. This year they’re especially thick – we hear two of the most familiar and cherished portions of scripture – the 23rd Psalm and the section from John’s gospel where Jesus says “I am the good shepherd.” Over […]

Good News in the Ashes, Ash Wednesday – 2015

February 18, 2015

RCL: Joel 2:1-2, 12-17 or Isaiah 58:1-12; Psalm 103 or 103:8-14; 2 Corinthians 5:20b-6:10; Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21 There’s something compelling about Ash Wednesday, something that draws us here in both numbers and intensity quite unusual for a weekday. It’s more than just habit or duty – somehow more than just the beginning of Lent. What […]

Reaching Out to the Least of These, Christ the King (A) – 2014

November 23, 2014

There is something terribly sad in today’s gospel reading, something so easy to miss that it eludes most of us. That’s probably because this is such a tempting story. It is one of the most straightforward of all the New Testament’s accounts of judgment; and one of the most fun. Here, judgment is connected to […]

The Yoke That Fits, Proper 9 (A) – 2014

July 06, 2014

Today’s reading from Matthew’s gospel is quite a contrast to what we’ve been hearing Jesus say lately. For most of the last few weeks, Jesus has been talking about the cost of discipleship – the certainty of persecution, conflict, suffering and painful division for those who choose to follow him. “Leave it all behind, pick […]

A Call to Relationship – Epiphany 2 (A) – 2014

January 19, 2014

This doesn’t happen very often with our new lectionary, but today there’s one theme that can be found in all four of our readings from scripture. It’s the notion of being called. The readings from Isaiah and from Paul’s First Letter to the Corinthians both begin with words about being called, about being set apart […]

The Light of Christ, Christmas 1 – 2013

December 29, 2013

Have you ever noticed that when you get together with your family and start telling stories about when you were growing up or what happened years ago, the same events sound very different as different people tell the story? Depending on who’s describing it, the guy who used to live across the street was a […]

Powerful Stuff…, Proper 15 (C) – 2013

August 18, 2013

Powerful stuff in today’s readings. Everybody seems to be on a tear; Jesus and Isaiah are full of wrath and judgment, and even the author of Hebrews slips out of his Platonic abstractions long enough to get downright graphic about the costs of discipleship. All pretty grim for a Sunday in late summer. This abundance […]

An Invitation to Intimacy with God, Holy Name Day – 2013

January 02, 2013

When we think about January 1st, usually, what comes to mind isn’t the Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus – also know as the Feast of the Circumcision. Nonetheless, today was the Feast of the Holy Name long before it became New Year’s Day. In fact, January 1 has only been called “New Year’s […]

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Christopher Sikkema


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