Stories captivate listeners, and carry their attention through plot twists, compelling characters, and poignant lessons. Jesus was a master storyteller, and his parables have allowed two thousand years of hearers the opportunity to learn eternal truths by engaging the imagination to understand the unimaginable. The parables of Jesus span from life, grace, the kingdom now, and the kingdom to come. These stories will capture our attention, awaken insight, and move us to share the stories of God’s work in our lives.
The Rich Man and Lazarus
Sunday, September 19 – This week, we transition from the unimaginable kingdom of God now, to the unimaginable Kingdom to Come. So much more than a lesson in the last will be first and the first will be last, in this parable Jesus describes the experience of heaven contrasted with hell in the context of an uncrossable chasm, testimony, repentance, and resurrection.
Sunday, September 26 – The farmer sowed good seeds, but at night, his enemy came and sowed weeds. Both plants grew among one another. Rather than pulling the weeds, they were allowed to remain until harvest, when they were removed from the grain and destroyed. Why does God permit us to live among unbelievers? What are we to do as the harvest approaches?
The Budding Fig Tree
Sunday, October 3 – The signs of spring alert us to the fact that summer is just around the corner. Likewise, God has given us signs to be aware of that will announce the return of Jesus and the world put right. Those signs are happening all around us, and yet we so easily fall into the trap of losing focus on this. The signs are here! The fullness of the Kingdom of God is near!
The Faithful Servant
Sunday, October 10 – Last week we heard that the kingdom is near, and this week we are reminded that we do not know the day or the hour. Jesus shares the parable of the faithful servant, who is attentively at his work caring for the household of the absent master. The master is pleased when he returns to find the servant diligently caring for his household. We learn that we are to be diligent, always ready for Jesus’ return.
Sunday, October 17 – In this parable the master entrusts wealth to three servants prior to his departure. The three take different approaches to how they care for what has been given them. God has entrusted so much to us; worldly wealth, influence, and most importantly, the gospel. How are we investing and multiplying the kingdom of God in preparation for his return?
The Great Banquet
Sunday, October 24 – Jesus shared the parable of a father who prepared a magnificent wedding banquet for his son. However, the invited guests did not show, and instead, mistreated and killed the father’s servants. The king filled the banquet hall with anyone who was found along the road. And let us not miss the intriguing twist at the end of the parable. God is inviting us to the feast that will be a great celebration of the fullness of his coming kingdom. Will we respond as the original invitees, or the people along the road?
Reformation Sunday – The Truth Will Set You Free
Sunday, October 31 – We pause from our parable sermon series this week to remember and celebrate Reformation Day! But we have another great story to remember. On this day, 504 years ago, Martin Luther nailed the 95 Theses to the door of the church in Wittenberg, Germany and sparked a movement that reclaimed the truth of the gospel, the truth that sets us free!
The Sheep and the Goats
Sunday, November 7 – The parable of the sheep and the goats has so much to teach us. From the reality that in every gathering, there are sheep and goats, believers and those without faith. On the last day, they will be separated, and those with faith will enjoy the kingdom of God, the world put right. Faith is what separates the sheep from the goats, and those who do good works or not. And the works done in faith for the benefit of the “least of these” have tremendous value.
The Ten Virgins
Sunday, November 14 – The ten virgins have been waiting for the coming bridegroom to let them into the wedding banquet. But not all of them were prepared for the wait. In this parable, Jesus reminds us of the importance of preparation and readiness. We do not know when he will return, only that it will be soon, and when it happens, we will need to be found alert, prepared, and ready.
The Wedding Feast
Sunday, November 21 – We conclude our sermon series with an unimaginable humility. We have received an invitation to attend the grand celebration of the coming kingdom of God. What an honor! We can easily let our pride swell. But Jesus teaches that we are to enter the party with humility. “For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”