Archive of recent sermons (2014-16)

22 May 2016 - Trinity_Romans5_hope famil[...]
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15 May 2016 - Pentecost_NormalSupernatur[...]
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8 May 2016 - Acts1_WaitingWell.pdf
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Sermon Series April-May 2016

10th April-1st May: Resurrection Living – studies in 1 Peter 1-2

This short series post-Easter focuses on the apostle Peter’s understanding of what it means to follow Christ in the light of the events of Easter, as taken from his first letter.  For followers of Jesus, Easter is not just the means of our salvation, but also the pattern of our Christian life: one of sacrificial love (cross) as well as resurrection life and power.  As Peter introduces his theme at the start of the letter:

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade.

The resurrection, it has often been observed, changes everything!  And so, as we celebrate the events of Easter again this year, in this Easter season we will look at ‘Resurrection Living’:

10th April: 1 Peter 1:1-12 – ‘A living hope’ (2nd reading: John 10:7-10)

17th April: 1 Peter 1:13-2:3 – ‘A holy lifestyle’ (2nd reading: Mark 7:14-23)

24th April: 1 Peter 2:4-12 – ‘A chosen people’ (2nd reading: John 17:20-26)

1st May: 1 Peter 2:13-25 – ‘Obedient servants’ (2nd reading: Matthew 5:11-16)

10 April 2016 - Resurrection Living1_Liv[...]
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24 April 2016 - ResurrectionLiving3_1Pe2[...]
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True Grit


‘What is truth?’  So asks a bewildered Pilate in John chapter 18 as Jesus stands before him, his life in the Governor’s hands.  And it remains a question millions have asked ever since – perhaps never more so than in our own sceptical age.  We have so much information, but so little confidence as to what is really true.

Lent is many things: a time of reflection, of sacrifice, of journeying with Jesus.  But it is also profoundly a season of truth.  We meditate on the truth about God, about the world, and the sobering truth about ourselves.  Lent ends with perhaps the profoundest truth of all, the events which Paul later called those which are of ‘first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures... that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures.’  And note that Easter is not just a truth: it is a truth built on a truth: ‘according to the Scriptures.’


So this year we will focus again on what is ‘true’.  But not just theoretical truth: what we crave above all is truth as lived experience.  Christ is the ultimate embodiment of that: and so our inspiration for this year are some of the words he himself spoke directly on his journey to the cross.  In choosing these words, we recognise again that he calls us, as he calls every follower in every age, ‘to deny ourselves, take up our cross and follow him.’  May God give us all grace to pursue Christ’s call again this Lent.


14th February: True Love                   John 15:13: ‘Greater love has no-one than this...’  

John 15:9-17 / OT reading: Psalm 85 – an understanding of love in the Old Testament

Today is Valentine’s Day!  But Jesus’ famous teaching reveals love in a totally new dimension.  The Greek language of Jesus’ day already had three words for love, including ‘eros’ – sexual love – which Valentine’s Day markets so shamelessly.  However, the early Christians felt an entirely new word was needed, to reflect the love which Jesus taught about and, above all, embodied.  And so ‘agape’ – selfless service – was invented.   It is this love we choose to celebrate today, and to invite ourselves to follow Jesus’ example, giving of ourselves selflessly to others.


21st February: True obedience         Luke 22:42: ‘Not my will, but yours, be done.’ 

 Luke 22:39-46 / OT reading: Psalm 116 – obedience to a vow whatever the cost

The Upper Room of last week gives way to Gethsemane.  Jesus knows what is about to happen, and earnestly pleads in prayer for God to take ‘the cup’ from him.  But true love is demonstrated, above all, in true obedience.  Jesus himself had just said as such to his disciples (John 14:15). There was to be no greater test.  Where is God calling us today to declare: not my will, but Yours, be done’?


28th February: True peace-making   Luke 22:51: ‘No more of this!’

Luke 22:47-53 / OT reading: Isaiah 9:2-7 – the promise of messianic peace

Jesus’ arrest can be viewed from many perspectives: betrayal, cowardice, the great confrontation of the kingdom of God against the powers of this world.  But in this dramatic encounter, Jesus also reveals another deep truth.  The end – however good it may seem – does not justify the means.  In rejecting violence as a means to what many would have called a just end – the freedom of an innocent man – Jesus shows us that the true life of faith cannot use worldly methods to succeed in its aims.  The Prince of Peace calls us to be people of peace.  A message the world needs more than ever, to be sure; but perhaps also one for us too?  What methods do we use to ‘succeed’: at work, in our family, in our relationships with others?


6th March: True courage (Mothering Sunday)        Luke 22:61: ‘Before the cock crows...’

Luke 22:54-62 / 2nd reading: Matthew 15:21-28 – a mother’s courage

When the stakes are high, when the pressure is on: how does anyone respond?  How do we?  Words uttered in haste in the safety of a private party are all well and good: but....  Being a follower of Jesus is getting progressively harder in this country.  Are we prepared to stand with Jesus as his name is ridiculed, or to deny it like Peter?   Can we affirm in the public square what we declare in the privacy of a church meeting?


Mothering Sunday brings an added dimension, too.  Parenthood requires many things: and courage is not the least of them.  And so we celebrate true courage today: the courage commended by Jesus, but also the courage of our mothers, who gave – and give – of themselves for us.


13th March: True forgiveness                        Luke 23:34: ‘Father, forgive them.’

Luke 23:32-43 / OT reading: Psalm 22:1-2,16-31 – a prophetic vision of the crucifixion

As Gethsemane moves to the trial and then to the cross, how does Jesus view his captors and persecutors? Today’s word hits home like a hammer.  He doesn’t spit abuse or scream injustice: ‘Father, forgive them.’  Forgiveness is probably the hardest of all the Christ-like virtues.  It seems so unfair.  And yet, it is the way of Christ: the way of true freedom.  May God grant us all grace to forgive others their debts, however large or small; and to receive from Christ the grace to do it.


20th March: True trust                       Luke 23:46: ‘Into your hands I commit my spirit.’

Dramatic reading of The Passion Narrative

On Palm Sunday we will tell again the Passion Story in dramatic form, so our teaching will be short and sweet: a homily, if you will. But it aptly summarises all that has gone before.  To live this life of true love, true grit, one fundamental is required: to trust that the One whose way of life we are following is good, and can be trusted.  And so we finish our Lent series affirming, as Jesus did, that our life, our spirit, is in His good, gentle and loving hands

14 February 2016 - Lent1_TrueLove_Jn15_V[...]
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28 February 2016 - Lent3_TruePeacemaking[...]
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6 March 2016 - Lent4 True Courage (Matt)[...]
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13 March 2016 - Lent5 TrueForgiveness.pd[...]
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Sermon series: January/February 2016


The (First and) Last Kingdom

‘The time has come, and the kingdom of God is near.’  With these words Jesus announced his public ministry, and for much of the rest of the next three years the kingdom was decisively declared and demonstrated by him.  In fact, the Kingdom of God constitutes the major theme of Jesus’ teaching, being mentioned over 100 times by him.  And yet the theme is largely overlooked in churches today – despite our weekly (or even daily) prayer: ‘Thy kingdom come...’!


This short series is an attempt to redress that balance.  Over the next few weeks we’ll reflect together on some of Jesus’ teaching about God’s kingdom.  Provocative, compelling, often counter-intuitive – and yet these simple parables and reflections have the stamp of divine authority and power which none of us can afford to overlook. 


As we begin 2016, let’s allow Jesus to set the agenda for our year: where are we being called to declare and demonstrate his kingdom? 


Scene-setter – 3rd January – The kingdom is our priority

Main passage: Matthew 16:13-20


Epiphany – 10th January – The kingdom is here

Main passage: Matthew 2:1-12 /2nd reading: Isaiah 60:1-6


17th January – The kingdom is surprising

Main passage: Matthew 13:31-35:


24th January – The kingdom turns everything upside-down

Main passage: Mark 10:13-27


31st January – The kingdom is a precious secret

Main reading: Matthew 13:44-46


7th February – The kingdom is available to everyone

Main reading: Matthew 20:1-16 

3 January 2016 - Kingdom Is Our Priority[...]
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Liberating_the Church_prologue.pdf
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10 January 2016 - Epiphany_Magi-cal_wors[...]
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17 January 2016 - A City Alive to God (M[...]
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24 January 2016 - Kingdom3_Turns Everthi[...]
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7 February 2016 - Kingdom5_AvailableToAl[...]
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27 December 2015 - Christmas 1 (Carolyn)[...]
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Christmas Day 2015 (Ruth).pdf
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24 December 2015 - Midnight Communion ta[...]
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20 December 2015 - Carol Service_talk_Lu[...]
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6 December 2015 - Luke 3_Advent2yrC_edit[...]
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Autumn Sermon Series - Prayer

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22 November 2015 - PermanentPrayer_Psalm[...]
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15th November 2015 (Carolyn).pdf
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8 November 2015 - Remembrance Talk.pdf
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1 November 2015 - Secret Church.pdf
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18 October 2015 - Unanswered prayer.pdf
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11 October 2015 - Deut8_HARVEST_inclBCP.[...]
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4 October 2015 - All Saints 4.20.25 Luke[...]
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27 September 2015 - Psalm 103_A5.pdf
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13 September 2015 - Prayer2_LordsPrayer_[...]
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6 September 2015 - Prayer1_importanceofp[...]
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Three Part Sermon Series - The Prodigal Son

16 August 2015 - Luke 15_YoungerSon.pdf
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23 August 2015 - Luke 15_ElderSon.pdf
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30 August 2015 - Luke 15_Father.pdf
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9 August 2015 (Carolyn).pdf
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2 August 2015 (Carolyn).pdf
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26 July 2015 - Judges 4 (Lou).pdf
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Get Stuck in .....

Sunday 7th June

...with Jesus

Sunday 14th June

...with my gifts

Sunday 21st June

...with my money

Sunday 28th June God’s mission

Sunday 5th July prayer

Sunday 12th July the bible

Sunday 19th July life in the Spirit




7 June 2015 - GSIW_Jesus_Hebrews12_AllAg[...]
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14 June 2015 - GSIW_Gifts_Ro12_Matt25_Al[...]
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21 June 2015 - Mark 12 (Lou).pdf
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28 June 2015 - GSIW_Mission_Gen12Matt28.[...]
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12 July 2015 - Psalm 119_AllAge.pdf
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19 July 2015 - GSIT_Life in the Spirit_2[...]
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14 May 2015 - Ascension Day 2015.pdf
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Sermon Series: Easter - July 2015

Back to basics


Timed to coincide with our summer Alpha course, we’ll be thinking about the heart of our faith during our Sunday series.  Ascension and Pentecost have been planned with relevant sermon topics!




First reading

Gospel reading

Sunday 19th April

Who is this man?

Romans 1:1-16

Mark 4:35-41

Sunday 26th April

What’s wrong with the world?

Genesis 3:1-15

Mark 10:35-45

Sunday 3rd May

Why did Jesus die?

Colossians 2:9-15

Mark 7:14-23

Sunday 10th May

But how can I be sure?

1 Corinthians 15:1-14

John 6:60-69

Sunday 17th May

Moving on up, moving on out

Acts 1:1-11

Luke 24:44-53

Sunday 24th May

What’s the Holy Spirit all about?

Galatians 5:16-26

John 15:26-27,


Sunday 31st May

Saved for... what?

Romans 12:1-8

Matthew 28:16-20

19 April 2015 - Mark4_Romans1_WhoisthisM[...]
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26 April 2015 - Genesis3_talk_AllSaints.[...]
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3 May 2015 - RescueMission_Mark7_Col2_Al[...]
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10 May 2015- HowBeSure_John6_1Cor15_AllA[...]
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We don't have Rev. Joseph's Sermon from 17th May, but we do have Melvyn Letts' preached at St Mary's on the same subject.

17 May 2015 - Jesus who lifts and change[...]
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24 May 2015 - Pentecost_AllAge_COMMUNION[...]
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31 May 2015 - Romans 12 saved for what ([...]
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Holy Week Sermons/Doubting Thomas

1 April 2015 - HolyWeek_Reflection_Wed_D[...]
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Maundy Thursday Reflections 2015.pdf
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Easter Sunday 2015 - talk_ALLSAINTS_A5.p[...]
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12 April 2015 (Carolyn Sanderson).pdf
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Sermon Series for Lent 2015


Sermon Series Overview
No word seems to matter more to us today than ‘Freedom’. But what it means is often far from clear and equally often sparks controversy. It’s a big word in the New Testament, and in the Christian story through the ages. But what actually is ‘Christian freedom’, and how does it relate to all the other ‘freedoms’ we say that we value in our lives and in society?

The Way to Freedom_Introduction.pdf
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These are the readings and themes for each Sunday. Where one reading forms the major focus of the study group material, this one is underlined.  In some weeks, however, both passages are used more or less equally:


Sunday 22nd February  Week 1: ‘What is freedom?’  - Galatians 5:13-21, John 8:31-38

Sunday 1st March         Week 2: ‘Discipline’ – 1 Corinthians 9:24-27, Matthew 4:1-11

Sunday 8th March         Week 3: ‘Action’ – Psalm 55:1-11, Mark 2:1-11

Sunday 15th March       Week 4: ‘Community’ (Mothering Sunday) – Philippians 2:1-11, Mark 9:33-37

Sunday 22nd March      Week 5: ‘Suffering’ – 2 Corinthians 12:1-10, John 21:15-19

Sunday 29th March       Week 6: ‘Death’ (Palm Sunday) – Philippians 1:20-25, John 12:12-36

22 February 2015 - Lent1 - What is free[...]
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1 March 2015 - Lent 2 - Discipline.pdf
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8 March 2015 - 1-11_ACTION_BCP.pdf
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15 March 2015 - AllAge_MotheringSunday_[...]
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22 March 2015 - Lent 5 Suffering.pdf
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Sermon Series: Early 2015


PRE-LENT (4th January – 15th February): Ephesians 1 - 3


‘Who are you?’ – discovering our amazing new identity in Christ

If someone was to ask you what a Christian was, what would you say.  ‘Someone who goes to church.’ ‘Someone who loves God.’  Maybe even ‘Someone who follows Jesus.’ But we are so much more than that!  We are in fact new creations: part of a unique, global, multi-racial, multi-cultural new society that God is creating on this earth in preparation for the perfect world to come.  We were chosen before the creation of the world to be adopted into his family, and have received his Spirit – the presence of his very self, imagine that! – as his downpayment in our lives.  Into this new community God showers his 4-dimensional love upon us (wide, long, high and deep) and empowers us with the same incomparable power that raised Jesus from the dead.  As he does so, we are slowly transformed into ‘little Jesuses’, manifesting his character, using his gifts and called to his purposes.


That’s who we are!  It’s an extraordinary vision, and it’s what fires a life which truly manifests ‘the fullness’ which he designed us to have.  In 2015 our priority is to discover who we really are.  And my prayer is that as we do so – as our vision expands, and we grasp a little more of the extraordinary reality of what it means to be ‘in Christ’ – so we will be inspired and empowered to lead the sort of dynamic, servant-hearted, fruitful Christian life we’ve longed to have but maybe thought was ‘for other people’.  And perhaps we might also see others come to that kind of life too.


Sunday 4th Jan (St Mary’s) / 11th Jan (All Saints): All Age worship focused on Epiphany


Sunday 4th Jan (All Saints) / 11th Jan (St Mary’s): VISION SUNDAY – Ephesians 1:1-14

Sunday 18th Jan: Ephesians 1:15-23

Sunday 25th Jan: Ephesians 2:1-10                     ) NB For each sermon, the speaker may

Sunday 1st Feb: Ephesians 2:11-22                     ) add a gospel reading of their choice.

Sunday 8th Feb: Ephesians 3:1-13

Sunday 15th Feb: Ephesians 3:14-21

A midweek home group series will be offered at each church which ties in with the Sunday themes.

11 January 2015 - Epiphany_Matt2.pdf
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4 January 2015 - Ephesians1_1-14_VISION [...]
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18 January 2015 - Ephesians1_15-23 - Hop[...]
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25 January 2015 - Ephesians 2 (Lou).pdf
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Matt's Sermon 1 Feb 2015

1 February 2015 - Ephesians2_11-22_BCP.p[...]
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Matt's All Age Sermon 8 Feb 2015

8 February 2015 - Ephesians3_1-13_ALLAGE[...]
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Matt's (Full) Sermon preached at St Mary's 8 Feb 2015

8 February 2015 - Ephesians3_1-13_St Mar[...]
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15 February 2015 - Ephesians3_14 - 21 (C[...]
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Advent/Christmas 2014

30 November 2014 - Advent Sunday (Caroly[...]
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7th December 2014 - Isaiah 40 God Reveal[...]
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14th December 2014 - Isaiah 61 God relea[...]
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21st December 2014 - A Christmas Parable[...]
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24 December 2014 - John 1_We have seen h[...]
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28 December 2014 (Carolyn Sanderson).pdf
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2014 Pledge Day

23 November 2014 - pledgeday2014 - Psalm[...]
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Sermon Series : October - November 2014

1 Thessalonians


Paul’s first letter to the Thessalonians is almost certainly one of the very first he wrote, to a tiny new church in a place where he was able to stay just 3 weeks! No wonder he was keen to find out how they were getting on, and in this early letter, we get a unique insight into what Paul taught new Christians, and of how he and his fellow leaders modelled the servant love of Jesus to them.  He was also confident that Jesus would come again very soon, and so this letter is also infused with the enthusiasm and urgency that conviction brought.  Let’s be inspired as we read and study a down-to-earth handbook for ‘how to be church’ whose message remains timeless.


Sunday 19th October – 1 Thess 1:1-10, Matthew 22:34-40

Sunday 26th October – 1 Thess 2:1-13, Matthew 23:1-12

Sunday 2nd November – 1 Thess 3:11-4:12, Matthew 24:36-44

Sunday 9th November – 1 Thess 4:13-5:11, Matthew 25:1-13 (Remembrance Sunday)

Sunday 16th November – 1 Thess 5:12-28, Matthew 25:14-30

19 October 2014 - 1 Thess1.pdf
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2 November 2014 - 1 Thess 3 - Suffering [...]
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2 November 2014 - Suffering Church_slide[...]
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9 November 2014 - Remembrance_Psalm105_1[...]
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16 November 2014 - 1Thessalonians 5 (Rev[...]
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Harvest 2014

Exodus23- HARVEST TALK 2014.pdf
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Sermon Series: September - October 2014

The Long Walk to Freedom: Exodus 12-33


Having looked at Jesus as ‘the new Israel’ – fulfilling all that Israel was meant to be –at the beginning of the year, September’s lectionary readings give us the chance to go back to the original!  Over the next 5 weeks, we’ll revisit the incredible story of how God rescues his people from Egypt, and continues to bless them despite their doubts and grumbling.  Along the way we’ll learn about some key themes of how God saves, of faithfulness in times of testing and of what it means to be the covenant people of God.


Sunday 7th September – Exodus 12:1-14,24-30, Matthew 26:17-19,26-30 - Passover

Sunday 14th September – Exodus 14:10-14,19-end, Matthew 8:23-27  – Crossing the Red Sea

Sunday 21st September – Exodus 16:1-27, Matthew 6:31-34 – God always provides

Sunday 28th September – Exodus 17:1-7, 1 Corinthians 10:1-13 – Water from the true rock

Sunday 5th October – Exodus 19:1-8;20:1-3, 1 Peter 2:9-12 – The Covenant (Rev. Carole Hough preached this sermon at All Saints. Matt's version is also attached below - preached at St Mary's on 12th October)

7 September 2014 - Exodus12.pdf
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14 September 2014 - Exodus14.pdf
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21 September 2014 - Exodus16.pdf
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28 September 2014 - Exodus 17 (Ruth).pdf
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5 October 2014 - Exodus 19 - The Covenan[...]
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12 October 2014 - Exodus 19.pdf
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For Sermons prior to September 2014, please contact:

Ann or Matt

who can provide copies