The Rev. Ken Kesselus, author of John E. Hines: Granite on Fire (Episcopal Theological Seminary of the Southwest, 1995), is retired from full-time, active ministry and lives with his wife, Toni, in his native home, Bastrop, Texas.
Sermons and Bible Studies
Can you image that celebrating Easter might bring danger for most of us? The danger comes from our knowing in advance the outcome of the drama – that Jesus rose again. Knowing what is going to be said and sung this morning, we are in danger of not being shocked by this unimaginably joyous, unprecedented […]
The gospel writer Mark uses his initial words to move the reader very quickly into the story of Jesus. In 11 brief verses, we see Jesus in three critical settings. First, his baptism, revealing him as the anointed one of God, is the starting point of all. The third setting is the beginning of the […]
How long have you been a member of this church? Or are you a first-timer? Look around. How long do you think those sitting near you have been members of this church? Somewhere in the crowd is someone who has been here the longest. And somewhere is someone who has been a member for the […]
It is hard to understand how two faithful disciples of Jesus could have traveled with him, side by side, without recognizing him. Maybe disappointment blinded their eyes and their hearts to the truth. In Jerusalem, they had learned the devastating news about Jesus’ death. Despite having heard about the women and other disciples reporting that […]
Sometimes landlubbers venture onto water in a boat with a “do-everything” professional guide. Country folk might view this as people “calling themselves ‘fishing.’” This kind of fishing includes little, if any, challenge. It is possible for a guide not only to provide the boat, rods and reels; but also to furnish bait and hooks, set […]
Throughout the chapters of the Gospel of Luke previous to today’s reading, the Evangelist again and again and again presents the Good News through telling stories. He illustrates a series of personal encounters between Jesus and others – sometimes with his followers, sometimes his opponents, sometimes strangers. There were crowds of the curious and hopeful […]
Jesus had a marvelous way of confronting people who held worldly beliefs, by turning their views upside down, shaking them out, so his listeners could understand the deeper realities of God. He was a genius at bringing his message down to a common-sense level – often by telling stories, sharply driving home a point leading […]
Today we pass out of the Christmas season, beyond the simplicity of Luke’s story of a humble birth with angels and shepherds, and beyond John’s exquisite message of the Word becoming flesh and living among us. Today we begin the Epiphany season – shifting from rejoicing at God’s coming among us to reflecting on what […]
Who is Jesus? Have you ever been asked that question? Have you asked it of yourself? Or does this seem like nonsense? It would seem natural to think that after 2,000 years of Christian history, we should not have to pose such an inquiry. We might add that it’s obvious – Jesus is our Lord […]
Jared Fogel became a familiar figure on television by revealing his dramatic weight loss through selectively eating Subway sandwiches. The national fast-food chain, however, has a current advertizing campaign, boasting that “Bigger is better. Biggest is Best.” This reference to their fountain drinks might make one wonder whether Subway actually originated in Texas rather than […]
In today’s gospel reading we gain a glimpse of Jesus reacting with two of his disciples. Philip and Andrew came to tell him that some Greeks had arrived asking to see him. As he so often did, Jesus answered indirectly. He didn’t say, “Send them away” or “Sure let them come in.” Instead, he took […]
We know very little about Jesus’ childhood. There is nothing in Mark or John. From Matthew, we learn that an angel told Joseph to name Mary’s child “Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” This, he reports, they did, and then he relates the account of the Wisemen’s visitation, followed by the […]
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