The reading from I Timothy 2:1-7 offers this advice: for those in high positions, offer prayers, thanksgivings, and supplications that we may live in peace and dignity. During the first century, the audience lived under the authority of Roman
The inspiration for today's sermon comes from two different readings, Amos 6 and Luke 16. One is from the prophet Amos and the other is a parable from Jesus. Both passages warns that those who find comfort in this life may find the next life more difficult. To those who are rich yet take no notice of the poor, this is a dire warning.
The reading from Psalm 10 expresses the laments of those effected by terrorism. How can God allow such suffering? On the anniversary of 9/11, we try to understand how a mistranslation of the word virgin can lead to terrorists believing they will be rewarded with 72 virgins for these violent acts.
Spike Lee has inspired the title of this week's sermon. The reading from Philemon offers a unique perspective on race relations today. Although it is short, Rev. Shockley considers the letter from Paul to Philemon to be the most personal historical document of the New Testament. This letter deals with the question of slavery. Today, slavery is considered in most places of the world to be a crime. Back in Paul's time, it was a common practice. In order to properly understand this letter, we must understand who is writing it and who is receiving it.