Verse of the Day

Sunday, July 25, 2021

Remembrance of Saint James superseding the Eighth Sunday after Trinity


One on His Right Hand and the other on His Left Hand.
Be careful what you ask for, you may get it.

Rev Jack's sermon is available on video RIGHT HERE!

Sermon – Reverend Jack Arnold - Time and Action

Church of the Faithful Centurion - Descanso, California

Today’s sermon brought the Collect, Epistle and Gospel together and is partly  contained in the forewords above. 


Consider the words from the Collect, wherein we ask God that we might be like … James, leaving his father and all that he had, without delay was obedient unto the calling of thy Son Jesus Christ, and followed him; so we, forsaking all worldly and carnal affections, may be evermore ready to follow thy holy commandments …  


The Collect reminds us as James forsook the world and the carnal pleasure of it to follow Christ, if we too are to truly be followers of Christ we must follow his example. He was making a good living being a fisherman but he forsook that when he followed Christ. We don’t necessarily have to give up our jobs, but the message is clear that if doing our jobs will hinder our ability to follow Christ (i.e, if they ask us to do anything immoral/against Scriptures) then in that case it probably would be a good idea to quit our jobs and find one with a corporate culture that is more aligned with the values of Scripture. It is getting harder and harder to find one these days, but I believe it is still possible.  It is getting harder and harder to be a professing Christian in this country as the liberals have obtained all the power in the government and are using the full power of the government to persecute Christians.


The second half of the Book of Luke the Physician is entitled The Acts of the Apostles and recounts the time after the crucifixion and resurrection.  It covers the demise of many of Christ’s followers, among them James, the son of Zebedee.  It warns us that if we are to truly follow Christ we must expect we will be persecuted and quite possibly killed for our faith. That is the cost of following Christ, we lose the respect of the world, but what we do gain is eternal life and the respect of God. If you look at it in those terms, losing the respect of the world is a fleeting thing and only temporal, but eternal life and God’s respect is eternal. 


The Gospel recounts James’ mother asking her sons be Jesus’ righthand men.  Her request somewhat reminds me of Jesus’s words, Forgive them Father for they know not what they do… Jesus went on to explain that position was not His to appoint but that of God the Father’s and that positions are not worth squabbling over. It is what you do with that position to help others that makes difference. To have a higher position and abuse it or not use it properly is not what the church is about. Jesus explains it is about helping other people and sharing the Good News with those people and it is in the end all about the individual’s actions that make the position. 


So, what to make of this?


Action counts.  For by their actions ye shall know them. 


Heaven is at the end of an uphill trail.  The easy downhill trail does not lead to the summit.


The time is now, not tomorrow.  The time has come, indeed.  How will you ACT?


It is by our actions we are known.


Be of God - Live of God - Act of God

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