Ryan Paige preaching at RMC on March 1, 2020

Temptations – March 1, 2020

Matthew 4:1-11

The temptations Jesus encountered shows Jesus was the Messiah. The most god-like thing to do in that moment was to not be godlike and while Jesus had the power to be godlike he chose not to.

What would you do in the moment of temptation if you were in Jesus’ position and had Jesus’ power? The history of Christianity shows that when the church grabs power it usually does pretty deplorable things with it. We’ve used it to oppress people, to discriminate, to support bigotry and racism. It’s not a good track record…

You are God’s child, in whom God is well-pleased. What are the temptations you’re facing? Know that you have a Messiah who has been there, who can sustain you as you walk through it.

Temptations – March 1, 2020

 
 
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Melissa preaches at Fletcher Academy on Feb. 2, 2020, the first Sunday RMC met there.

Last Supper – Feb. 2, 2020

Matthew 26:17-30

On this first Sunday that we held worship at Fletcher Academy, Melissa recounts the story of the Last Supper, Jesus having Passover with his friends. The account in Matthew spends more time talking about the betrayal by Judas than it does about breaking of the bread and sharing the cup.

When we come together for communion, we stand in a circle, full of our betrayals, all of our failures, and they’re already awash in the death of Jesus. His life is in the blood.

Last Supper – Feb. 2, 2020
A Year at the Table

 
 
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Melissa preaching at RMC on Oct. 27, 2019

Remembrance of baptism – Jan. 12, 2020

Matthew 3:3-17

NOTE: There were electronic issues during the recording which caused interference in the audio. It gets progressively worse toward the end of the recording, but it’s a good sermon, so if you can persevere, it’s worth it!

Baptism is a little death. At the same time, all of life is baptism.

There is no point at which you will know enough, or have enough faith, or get enough information, to pass the test for entering this community through baptism. There is no test! It’s already completed.

Baptism won’t initiate a perfect life. In fact, you might get more confused or have more questions.

Remembrance of baptism – Jan. 12, 2020

 
 
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Stan Wilson preaching at RMC on Jan. 5, 2020

Not Belonging – Jan. 5, 2020

John 1, Matthew 2:1-12

Stan Wilson provided the sermon this morning. Drawing from Rowan Williams, former Archbishop of Canterbury, Stan says to be true to our Christian vocation, we need to “not belong.” For the church to not belong, we need to be part of a community that is called to embrace the wholeness and fullness of Christ. We are strangers in an inhumane world. Christians have a calling to not belong in this nation, or any nation, if the lines are drawn to privilege certain ethnic identities, or if the state exists to prop up corporate power against human beings, or to imprison and not restore offenders of the law.

It is life giving to learn where you don’t belong.

Not Belonging – Jan. 5, 2020

 
 
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Melissa preaching at RMC on Oct. 27, 2019

Adoption – Dec. 22, 2019

Isaiah 7:10-16, Matthew 1:18-25

Even though Joseph is not Jesus’ biological father, Jesus becomes a part of Joseph’s story; the inheritor and adopted child of the whole line of God’s promises. Our story as Christians is also one of adoption. We were destined for adoption as God’s children through Jesus Christ.

Adoption – Dec. 22, 2019
Raleigh Mennonite Church Sermons

 
 
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Melissa preaching at RMC on Oct. 27, 2019

Fulfilled – Filled Up – Dec. 8, 2019

Isaiah 11:1-10 & Matthew 3:1-12

On this second Sunday of Advent, Melissa told us, “this is a season to be shaken up and shaken out.”

Christians have a profound failure to live out the Gospel, but we’re also attuned to our failure. We require outside intervention and Jesus comes through an intervention of love. It’s time to be shaken and brought to the full realization of ourselves.

Melissa began with a short video clip (:40-1:15) showing the reunion between a lioness and her two early caretakers.

Fulfilled – Filled Up – Dec. 8, 2019
Raleigh Mennonite Church Sermons

 
 
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Rachel Taylor preaching Aug. 11, 2019

Unlocked Doors – Aug. 11, 2019

Matthew 12:1-6
Hebrews 9:1-14

Rachel brought the message this morning and began by telling us about recently being locked in the walk-in refrigerator at Anathoth Community Garden. She weaved this story and several readings into the teachings from the Hebrews passage about Christ as our high priest.

Jesus, as our priest, makes us whole, by reminding us that there is a locked door but also by opening it. By reminding us that we’re in a pit, but that God is there to pull us out. He also reminds us that our gifts and efforts are not what saves us, because the gift of Jesus’ life has already done that.

Unlocked Doors – Aug. 11, 2019

 
 
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Melissa preaching May 19, 2019

Sacrifices & Finding Life – July 28, 2019

Hebrews 4:14 – 5:10 & Matthew 26:36-40

Melissa works at clearing up misconceptions we often have and reconciling some of our notions of the sacrificial system of the Old Testament and Jesus’ life and crucifixion. We were forgiven long before we knew we needed forgiving.

Sacrifices & Finding Life – July 28, 2019

 
 
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Zinith Barbee preaching at RMC on July 21, 2019

The Good, the Bad & the Cross – July 21, 2019

Matthew 12:46-50, Hebrews 2:10-18

Zinith Barbee provided the sermon this morning, intertwining stories of Wyatt Earp and cowboys, with Jesus, his family, and Pharisees. At the end of the four gospels, we don’t get the OK Corral, we get Golgotha. Jesus is not the new Sheriff in town, he’s the new light and life.

The Good, the Bad & the Cross – July 21, 2019

 
 
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Rachel preaching July 15, 2018

Laughing Together – April 28, 2019

Matthew 28:18-20

On this Sunday after Easter, we celebrate “Holy Humor.”

We’re called to laugh. Laughter is not an escape. It’s not a weapon. It’s not something to be hoarded. Laughter is something we’re called to nurture. It’s something we’re called to grow in. Laughter is a way to celebrate God’s reign now, and in the future.

Laughing Together – April 28, 2019

 
 
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The Resurrection Reorders Life – April 21, 2019

Matthew 28:1-15

Melissa tells us there were two very different realities that Sunday morning, three days after Jesus had been crucified. The contrast between the Jewish women and the Roman soldiers at the grave couldn’t have been greater.

The Easter story is a story of grace. It’s a reordering of life. We’re encouraged to let ourselves be loved by God and to love God in return.

The Resurrection Reorders Life – April 21, 2019

 
 
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Melissa preaching

The Questions of Holy Week – April 14, 2019

Matthew 21:1-17

It’s Palm Sunday. The day we celebrate Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem as the King of Peace. But Jerusalem is a powder keg at Passover, and Jesus tosses in a match. It’s not unlike the unrest during the Civil Rights movement, when activists carried out a series of non-violent direct actions, pushing against the norms and upsetting those in power. The gospel of Jesus Christ will not make you nice or orderly; it will make you a very poor citizen to the way things have always been. Especially during this Holy Week, what are you willing to be left undone, to make space for resurrection?

The Questions of Holy Week – April 14, 2019

 
 
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Melissa preaching at RMC, April 7, 2019

Come home – April 7, 2019

Matthew 25:31-46

Johnny Cash plays heavily in Melissa’s sermon today. In fact, the service included listening to one of his songs that talks about today’s parable of God’s judgment, separating the sheep from the goats.

When I hear Johnny saying God’s going to cut you down, or Jesus preaching the story that might make our eyes a little bit wider, I hear a warning, a red flashing siren from people who know how bad life can be when you are drowning in self-deception, in your ignorance of your neighbor’s suffering, or our desire to look out for ourselves even if it means that you run other people down.

And to be forgiven for hurting people we love? That’s where eternal life starts. To let that forgiveness send you out to discover people who are lost and alone. That is the very center of God’s reign.

Come home – April 7, 2019

 
 
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Melissa speaking at the Dec. 24, 2018 Christmas Eve service.

Stay Awake! – March 31, 2019

Matthew 25 & 26

Melissa places the parable of the bridesmaids waiting for the groom at the wedding in the larger context of parables around it. All of you who call yourselves followers of Jesus, now is the time! Stop getting distracted. Focus on what we are called to do. We need to find Jesus in the dispossessed, the most vulnerable among us because the reign of God is not in the future. It’s here and now.

Stay Awake! – March 31, 2019

 
 
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Melissa speaking at the Dec. 24, 2018 Christmas Eve service.

The Parable of the Workers in the Vineyard – March 17, 2019

Matthew 20:1-16

A farmer hires workers throughout the day. Some work all day others just short time but the farmer pays all of them the same wages. This may not be fair but it is right. God does not bless people according to title, power, salary or any measure, God’s grace is freely given to everyone. This is good news or as Melissa put it “the full employment at a living wage parable”.

Melissa also address the erroneous use of this parable to raise Christians above others. Dividing people and causing harm.

The Parable of the Workers in the Vineyard – March 17, 2019

 
 
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