Mat 17:1-8 1 And after six days Jesus took with him Peter and James, and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. 2 And he was transfigured before them, and his face shone like the sun, and his clothes became white as light. 3 And behold, there appeared to them Moses and Elijah, talking with him. 4 And Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good that we are here. If you wish, I will make three tents here, one for you and one for Moses and one for Elijah.” 5 He was still speaking when, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.” 6 When the disciples heard this, they fell on their faces and were terrified. 7 But Jesus came and touched them, saying, “Rise, and have no fear.” 8 And when they lifted up their eyes, they saw no one but Jesus only. Continue reading “The Transfiguration of Christ (Matthew 17:1-8)”→
Sermon by Daniel L. Sonnenberg | February 23, 2014
Sermon Text: Matthew 5:38-48
38 “You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ 39 But I say to you, Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. 40 And if anyone would sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. 41 And if anyone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. 42 Give to the one who begs from you, and do not refuse the one who would borrow from you.
43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? 48 You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect. Continue reading “Sons of Your Father in Heaven: Sermon on the Mount, Part 4 (Matthew 5:38-48)”→
Sermon by Daniel L. Sonnenberg | February 16, 2014
21 “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment.’ 22 But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother[a] will be liable to judgment; whoever insults[b]his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell[c] of fire. 23 So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, 24 leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. 25 Come to terms quickly with your accuser while you are going with him to court, lest your accuser hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the guard, and you be put in prison. 26 Truly, I say to you, you will never get out until you have paid the last penny.[d]
27 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ 28 But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 29 If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell. 30 And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body go into hell.
13 “You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet. 14 “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.
17 “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. 18 For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished. 19 Therefore whoever relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever does them and teaches them will be called great in the kingdom of heaven.20 For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Continue reading “Disciples in Jesus’ Kingdom: Sermon on the Mount, Part 2 (Matthew 5:13-20)”→
Sermon by Daniel L. Sonnenberg | February, 2, 2014
The Sermon on the Mount
In this season, we are celebrating the manifestation or revelation of Jesus as the Christ to the world, especially in his preaching and miracles, his words and works.
At the end of Matt 4, we’re told Jesus went about all Galilee preaching “repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”
The message of sermon on the mount is what it means to repent and to belong to the kingdom of heaven.
The sermon is a description of the lifestyle of those who belong to that kingdom.
To belong to the kingdom of God is to belong to the people among whom the reign of God has already begun.
Jesus himself is the king in God’s kingdom.
Where he reigns, there the kingdom of heaven is already present.
Jesus’ sermon is intended to give you a vision of what the Lord intends your life to become.
He describes a lifestyle patterned after his own, empowered by the Spirit of Christ, living in you by regeneration.
The problem is, you live in a fallen world.
The new lifestyle of the kingdom is to be lived out where you’re opposed by the world, the flesh, and the devil.
That battle will be finally won, the promised rewards will be finally received, the kingdom will be finally consummated when Christ returns and puts everything under his authority in the new heavens and the new earth.
But until that time, you’re in a spiritual battle.
In the beatitudes Jesus announces the principles that govern the citizens in the new community he has come to establish.
The beatitudes are not not to be taken individually, but together, like the fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5.
They are not merely individual evidences, but mutual evidences of God grace in your life.
You may be weaker in one area than another.
But taken together, they view various aspects of Christlike character.
The kind of life, the quality of life, that Jesus brings into his kingdom is his own life, his own character, his own values, his own ethics.
Transformation or sanctification is a process.
Kingdom life is Jesus’ life lived out in you as his redeemed subject.
As J.I. Packer says, Regeneration is birth; sanctification is growth.
God implants desires that were not there before.
The HS “works in you to will and to act according to God’s purpose.”
And he prompts you to “work out your salvation with fear and trembling” (Phil 2.12-13).”
That’s what Jesus was doing when he went up into the hill country, sat down and taught his disciples that day.