connect to resurrection: embolden


Happy Eastertide! This is not a tide influenced by the moon but the rising of hope as we continue our sermon series Connect to Resurrection! We understand the power of the negative things in our lives. We can try to ignore them or move beyond them but at times these negative things are overwhelming. We live in a society that offers only surface connection and shallow commitment. This makes us fragile as we try to move into a future without fear and dread. People tell us they have the answer, but we realize that one size does not fit all. We are left feeling isolated and uncertain. Jesus came to offer us a new life to transform our old path of conformity and fear. When we struggle with life, relationships, and faith we wonder where we went wrong! In our sermon Embolden, we turn to 2 Corinthians 3:2-12. This is the second letter of Paul to the struggling church in Corinth. Some people have come to them claiming to have the answers. The path they want the Corinthians to take will lead them straight to the darkness of legalism and the burden of spiritual slavery. The Corinthians are new believers and they are easily distracted by anything that seems to make great promises of a good life. Very little has changed since the first century. It is easy for us to get distracted and confused by all the circumstances and voices surrounding us. Paul reminds these struggling believers of the light of new life that can only be found in the resurrected Jesus. Paul helps them, and us, to follow that light out of the darkness of our broken relationships and lives. Resurrection light can overcome all the darkness of our world! Our most earnest prayer for you is that as you travel through the valley of the shadow of death you will be guided and warmed by the light of resurrection hope, especially as you read 2 Corinthians 3:2-12.

2 Corinthians 2:2-12 You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everyone. 3 You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts. 4 Such confidence we have through Christ before God. 5 Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God. 6 He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant– not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life. 7 Now if the ministry that brought death, which was engraved in letters on stone, came with glory, so that the Israelites could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of its glory, transitory though it was, 8 will not the ministry of the Spirit be even more glorious? 9 If the ministry that brought condemnation was glorious, how much more glorious is the ministry that brings righteousness! 10 For what was glorious has no glory now in comparison with the surpassing glory. 11 And if what was transitory came with glory, how much greater is the glory of that which lasts! 12 Therefore, since we have such a hope, we are very bold. (NIV)