Hope Springs Eternal

God is (Revealing, Healing, Purifying) Light (A Sermon for Easter 2B)

An episode of Hope Springs Eternal

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By Alan Bentrup
Stories of hope in the Church (and some sermons along the way).
The Scent of Resurrection
A sermon for Easter 3C, preached at St. Michael & All Angels, Columbia, S.C.
11:32
May 5, 2019
We Have Seen the Risen Christ (A Sermon for for the Feast of the Resurrection - 2019)
We Have Seen the Risen Christ (A Sermon for for the Feast of the Resurrection - 2019) All Saints Episcopal Church (Beech Island, SC) John 20:1-18 April 21, 2019 We are called to go from this place and tell the world that pain and sorrow and death and despair will never...can never...have the final say. So go out and share your story. Go out and share the story.
11:09
April 21, 2019
Our Time Has Come (a homily for Monday of Holy Week, 2019)
The waiting is almost over.
03:42
April 15, 2019
On Earth, As It Is In Heaven (A Sermon for Lent 2C, 2019)
These may seem like abstractions, like pie-in-the-sky theology that will never, ever, in a million years become a reality. And yet, as followers of Jesus Christ, we live each day with the expectation that heaven on earth will come to fruition. And in so doing, we make it more real. We live our heavenly citizenship. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done. We pray this daily because we are people of hope.
14:30
March 19, 2019
Crossing Boundaries for Love (a sermon for Wednesday in the first week of Lent)
he clearest definition I’ve ever heard for the mission of God is this: Crossing boundaries for love. Bishop Holly did that his whole life. He was a priest and a bishop and a missionary that crossed boundaries, literally and figuratively. That’s why we remember him today. Philip did that, when he listened to the Spirit’s call to to cross a boundary and engage in conversation with the Ethiopian. Lent...and this journey to Good Friday and Easter...is a reminder that Jesus crossed crossed the ultimate boundary...between heaven and earth...for love. So, I ask you? Where do you see boundaries in your community? In your church? In your own life? And what boundaries are you willing to cross for love?
12:03
March 14, 2019
Who Is My Neighbor? (a Lenten series at St. John's Episcopal Church, Winnsboro, SC)
“Who Is My Neighbor ?” is a four-part Lenten Series beginning Sunday, March 10 at 4:00 p.m. sponsored by St. John’s Episcopal Church, 301 W. Liberty St.,  Winnsboro, SC.  Speakers from the Episcopal, Jewish, Muslim and Greek Orthodox faiths will offer insights and observations about their faith and how love is the starting point for interfaith dialogue. Click here for my initial manuscript (which is never fully what I end up saying...)
48:04
March 10, 2019
We Know How This Thing Ends (A sermon for the last Monday after the Epiphany)
When we know the end of the story, it frees us to look at the journey in a new way.
03:11
March 4, 2019
Right Here. Right Now. Today (A Sermon for Epiphany 3C, 2019)
Jesus is asking his friends to open their eyes, to see God at work in the world around them, and to look for those ways they might participate in God’s mission. Right here. Right now. Today. In a very real way, the Spirit was upon Jesus. And that same Spirit abides in you, and me, and all of us. Right here. Right now. Today. And by emphasizing the word “today,” Jesus transformed Isaiah's words, Isaiah's prophecy, into a powerful invitation for the whole community to act on behalf of God's dream of justice. Right here. Right now. Today.
13:26
January 27, 2019
Timing is Everything (A Sermon for Epiphany 2C)
Timing is everything, and it is time to pray and discern and study the Bible and get to know our neighborhoods, so that we can figure out what particular roles we play in these stories.
17:39
January 20, 2019
What Are We Waiting For? ( A Sermon for Advent 1C 2018)
We don’t just need to wait for the Light to come. We need to be the light in the world.
12:54
December 3, 2018
Sacrificial. Selfless. Reckless. (A Sermon for Proper 27B - 2018)
To me, this section of Mark isn’t rocket science. It is about how we are supposed to live. About how we are supposed to love. I don’t know if y’all are in your stewardship season or not, but it’s also about how we’re supposed to give. But above all, it is about how we are supposed to respond to God and relate to one another. Loving...living...giving. Sacrificially...selflessly...recklessly.
15:48
November 11, 2018
Live and Love Like the Saints (a sermon for Proper 26B
What is the greatest commandment?
12:35
November 4, 2018
I Want To See Again (A Sermon for Proper 25B 2018)
What do you want me to do for you? I want to see everything as made in God's image.
16:10
October 28, 2018
Pocket Knives and the Kingdom of God
What are we willing to give up to follow Jesus?
05:35
October 14, 2018
Listen Like a Child (A Sermon for Proper 22B)
Jesus is talking about a relationship all right, but perhaps he is using marriage as a metaphor for something bigger. Jesus is talking about brokenness in our lives, and in our relationships...but he is talking about the source of that brokenness. Hard hearts. Unlistening hearts.
13:50
October 8, 2018
The River Is Moving (A Sermon for EDUSC Clergy Conference)
As is the case with any successful institution, the church as we know it today was built with the best social and religious engineering available: as a robust and hardy structure to last. A lot of time, energy, sweat, and money has been invested. Generations of investment. And it served as a bridge for many to move from birth to death. It spanned the river. And that all worked very well when the river was in the right place.
16:57
September 25, 2018
Stand With Christ, Stand With Others (A Sermon for Proper 7B)
We stood with one another when we faced a storm 10 months ago. And we are called every day to​ stand with each other in all the other storms we face in our lives. But that’s the easy part. We’re also called to stand with those that aren’t in this room right now. Jesus and his disciples were going to the other side of the lake when all this happened. They were going to the people that weren’t part of their tribe. They were going to the people on the margins.
13:06
June 24, 2018
Reckless Love of God (A Sermon for Trinity Sunday)
Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God Oh, it chases me down, fights ‘til I’m found, leaves the ninety-nine I couldn’t earn it, I don’t deserve it, still You give Yourself away Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God
20:52
May 27, 2018
This is Our Altar Call (A Sermon for Easter 7B)
In First John, and throughout the Gospel of John, eternal life doesn’t just mean life beyond the grave. Eternal life isn’t just talking about what happens after we die, but instead it is about how we live now - before we die - once we put our faith in Christ. Eternal life is full life, everlasting life, changed life, now and in the world to come.
14:28
May 13, 2018
Bentrup, Germany (A Sermon for Easter 6B)
This is the faith that overcomes the world: God’s love brings healing out of brokenness. God’s love brings light out of darkness. God’s love brings day out of night. God’s love brings life out of death.
16:48
May 6, 2018
Plenty of Work for Love to Do (A Sermon for Easter 5B)
We live in a world that is broken, there’s no doubt about that. But that same world is precious to God, is loved by God, and is filled with a great many people called to live out God’s love. Because love is from God. And there is plenty of work for love to do.
13:32
April 29, 2018
You’re Children of God, Now Act Like It! (A Sermon for Easter 3B)
You are God’s own beloved child. Become what you already are. Live into your new identity. See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called the children of God! And that is what we are! Now, act like it!
10:17
April 15, 2018
God is (Revealing, Healing, Purifying) Light (A Sermon for Easter 2B)
God is light. And walking in that light, being people of that light, will begin to change us. Because the light reveals, heals, and purifies.
17:31
April 8, 2018
Nobody Ever Gets to Stay (A Sermon for for the Feast of the Resurrection - 2018)
You can’t stay here, because nobody ever gets to stay. So go out and share your story, share THE story. Shout it into the darkness. Cry out into the emptiness. Tell the world that you have experienced the risen Lord… and he is alive and he has transformed your life… and he is still making all things new. Nobody ever gets to stay. So go.
12:26
April 1, 2018
Nobody Dies Alone (A Sermon for Lent 5B)
I suspect the Greeks in today’s gospel didn’t go expecting to talk about death when they showed up to worship. They just wanted to see Jesus. But Jesus talked about death. A lot.
17:06
March 18, 2018
The Hardest Commandment (A Sermon for Lent 3B)
Sabbath is taking time for God. It's more than not going to work, not working at home, not sitting at the computer, not working around the house—it's reminding ourselves of God's central place in our lives and being grateful. It’s also reminding ourselves that we aren’t the center of the universe and that work can go on without us.
13:19
March 4, 2018
Luke, Jesus, and the Hebrew Bible
A Lenten presentation for St. Stephen's in Huntsville, Texas, looking at how Luke connects the story of Jesus with the story of Israel.
55:08
March 1, 2018
Resurrection Over Survival (A Sermon for Lent 2B)
The way of Christ, self-denial, reminds us that our life is not our own. It belongs to God. It reminds us that we are not in control, God is. Our life is not about us. It is about God There is great freedom in knowing these things. We are free to be fully alive. Through self denial our falling down becomes rising up. Losing i​s​ saving. Death ​is ​resurrection.
12:37
February 25, 2018
Transforming the Ordinary (A Sermon for Epiphany 3B)
Casting and mending are realities of life. They are also the circumstances in which Jesus comes to us, the context in which we hear the call to new life, and the place where we are changed and the ordinary is transformed.
13:46
January 21, 2018
Beloved Children of God (A Sermon for Epiphany 1B, 2018)
Take a moment to remember the last baptism you witnessed. Perhaps you can recall the proud parents and godparents, dressed in their Sunday best, standing around the baptismal font. In their arms they hold their young, freshly-bathed child, hoping that she won’t create a fuss. Before them stands the minister or priest, neatly dressed in suit and tie, or robe, or colorful vestments. The font stands ready. The congregation looks on with curiosity and pleasure, wondering how the child will respond to what is about to happen. The atmosphere is peaceful and serene. It is a family occasion, a beautiful moment that will long be remembered.
12:37
January 7, 2018
Just The Beginning (A Sermon for Advent 2A - 2018)
Matthew begins with a genealogy linking Jesus back to Abraham. Luke begins with a short address about his research methodology. John begins with a mysterious poem about creation. But Mark just hits the ground running and never looks back. “The beginning of the good news of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.”
11:48
December 10, 2017
Join the Team (A Sermon for All Saint’s Day)
Baseball has the power to unite us across differences that are so often used to divide. That sounds an awful lot like the Christian faith to me, doesn’t it?
09:59
November 5, 2017
Practice Loving Your Neighbor (A Sermon for Proper 25A)
So why should we read Leviticus? I believe that underneath all the rules about sacrifice and purity, all the strange regulations about food and clothes, there is a vision of holiness and harmony with God that is life-giving and has the potential to speak a healing word to our fractured and alienated condition.
12:31
October 29, 2017
Minted in Christ (A Sermon for Proper 24A)
God’s motive was freedom from bondage and a new opportunity to rebuild the community. Cyrus’ motive was expanding his territory by military might and increasing the kingdom over which he reigned. How could God rely on someone like that to further God’s intention?
14:32
October 22, 2017
Turn and Live (A Sermon for Proper 21A)
Turn and Live (A Sermon for Proper 21A) by Alan Bentrup
15:51
September 30, 2017
Generosity Over Jealousy (A Sermon for Proper 20A)
We all know somebody who never earned nor deserved what they got, right? They didn’t really deserve that job, promotion, raise, recognition, happiness, or success. We worked longer or tried harder, but that didn’t make any difference. More often than not, we view the world, ourselves, and others through the lens of fairness rather than grace. We view ourselves in comparison to others. That’s the exact opposite of how God views the world.
15:09
September 24, 2017
How Often Should I Forgive? (A Sermon for Proper 19A)
Forgiveness, for Jesus, is not a quantifiable event. It is a quality; a way of being, a way of living, a way of loving, a way of relating, a way of thinking and seeing. It is nothing less than the way of Christ.
14:17
September 17, 2017
Look to the Rock That Will Last
A sermon for Proper 16A August 27, 2017
19:16
August 27, 2017
Mary, Moana, and the Gospel (A Sermon for St. Mary's Day 2017)
Mary, Moana, and the Gospel (A Sermon for St. Mary's Day 2017)
18:23
August 20, 2017
Transformed for a Purpose (A Sermon for the Feast of the Transfiguration)
“Is it real?” That’s one of my boys’ favorite questions. When they encounter something new or different that is what they want to know. Reality for them is something that can be seen, tasted, touched, smelled, and heard. Reality was determined by, and limited to, the five physical senses.
11:53
August 5, 2017
Be Transformed - A Sermon for VBS Sunday
Be Transformed - A Sermon for VBS Sunday by Alan Bentrup
12:52
July 23, 2017
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