January 2021 Messages and Scriptures
We have five Sundays in January 2021, and we are going to stick with the lectionary and not preach a January/Epiphany series this year. Then we only have two Sundays in February before we begin Lent (Candlemas on February 7 and Transfiguration Sunday on February 14). Lent will be a preaching series, Rending the Heart and Claiming the Promise. The series is anchored in Joel 2:1-2; 12-17. More on that later.
January 3, 2021
January 6 is Epiphany, so we will celebrate Epiphany today
Wesley Covenant Prayer
2nd Sunday after Christmas
Message: “Where is the Child?”
Scriptures: Matthew 2:1-12 and John 1: 14-18
Preview: The Wise Men asked, “Where is the Child born king of the Jews? Christmas is over. All the gifts are unwrapped. A few have been returned. And we might look around, and wonder, “Where is the Child”. The child is where we find grace and truth. Grace upon grace. Worthy of our life and praise.
January 10, 2021
Baptism of the Lord Sunday
Remember our Baptism Sunday
Scripture: Mark 1:4-11; Acts 19:1-7
Message: “An Important Question”
Preview: Paul asked the believers in small church in Ephesus, “Into what then were you baptized?” That is still an important question for the church today. We are called by our Baptism time and again to be the church, in small and large ways.
January 17, 2021
Second Sunday after Epiphany
Message: “Stairway to Heaven”
Scriptures: John 1:43-51 and Genesis 28:10-16
Preview: That old Led Zeppelin song, “Stairway to Heaven” is a bit of a jumble, with the lyrics about a lady futilely trying to buy a stairway to heaven. Our scriptures today connect the Old Testament covenant and visual of Jacob’s stairway with the New Testament Good News that Jesus is the connection between heaven and earth. There is no jumble. The true “stairway to heaven” is Jesus.
January 24, 2021
Third Sunday after Epiphany
Message: “The Sign of Jonah”
Scriptures: Jonah 3:1-5,10; Mark 1:14-20 and Luke 11:29-30
Preview: In Melville’s “Moby Dick”, Father Mapple preached the book of Jonah. We will play with this, but the text is quite serious as we consider repentance and obedience. Some say that “Jonah” is not much more than a yarn for children, but we will find that Jesus sure did not think so.
January 31, 2021
4th Sunday after the Epiphany
Scripture: Mark 1:21-28
Preview: We acknowledge that Jesus has authority, but what does that mean? Authority to forgive sins. Authority over the elements. Authority to heal. Authority to teach and tell us what is right. His is the legitimate authority.