The following guest sermon was submitted by ULC minister Rev. Dr. Harry James Tomkinson D.D. All ULC Ministers are invited to contribute their own sermons for consideration/publication. To submit a sermon, please email it to email@example.com.
There are at least two places in the Gospels of The New Testament where Jesus tries to explain in simple terms to his disciples about The good shepherd and just how he looks after his flock: (John 10) and again in his "Parable of The Lost Sheep" (Luke 15).
So if we look at these in John 10, Jesus starts by saying" I tell you the truth". We have always to take special note of these words, because whenever Jesus says them, he means us to focus on what he is saying. But in this instance his disciples don't seem to quite understand his meaning at first. Jesus then tries again to give them a story about a shepherd and how he looks after his sheep in real terms.
In Luke's Gospel (15) Jesus, perhaps explains his message about the lost sheep using a different approach, so he tells them a parable! This is one which I think we can all relate too.
At some point in our lives, we may all, and can, wander off and get lost in the darkness, trapped in situations that often degrade us, repeating destructive behaviours that rob us of joy, real joy! But amidst of all of this, Jesus the good shepherd comes searching for us, his lost sheep.
He has patient compassion when we search for love and happiness in the wrong places. He sees our silent despair, which is often cloaked in the rush and glitter of modern life. We cry out for something better! Then, our very need draws his goodness. There is no trace of resentment in his great heart at our messy and confused lives. A thousand times, ten thousand, his compassion is unfailing!
Jesus knows us as we are and loves us as we are - even as he draws us deeper into freedom with his generosity.
The Good Shepherd tells us "I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full".
Jesus told the parable of the shepherd who left ninety-nine of his sheep to search for the lost one: And he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and takes it home!
Maybe some of those listening to Jesus would have thought, what a stupid shepherd! All that fuss about one lost sheep. Leaving nine-nine sheep to go and search for one, simply made no sense.
But that one, and each one, means the world to this Shepherd God! Jesus wants us to understand that no matter how many times we are lost, he will find us, and put us on his shoulder and take us home again! Amen.
Rev. Dr. Harry James Tomkinson D.D 2023
Oh no......not more guesswork as to whatever this Jesus person ever really said, written by people that never knew him.🤷🏼
You are the most negative person I've ever read your replies. First of all, Jesus human & Divine is a personal God. One in which each Christian has a personal relationship with. Sorry you don't have that. Because a God like that is desperately needed 7n dark times to give us hope, to give us faith and to give us love. If you truly had a relationship with Him you would trust that relationship . Sadly, you don't. The Scriptures are one way to know Jesus. We believe that what is recorded is what he said. So to you we know what Jesud said because we do know him. We don't guess on what he said because we know it, we believe it and we live it. So please stop criticizing others belief systems. Enuff said.
Sorry you hate the facts that we don't have any contemporary historians of the said times of Jesus. No contemporary historian ever wrote about what he is supposed to have said, so what we are left with is here-say from those who never met him.
What I loved best about one of those Bible tales is when Mr Jesus went into the Garden of Gethsemane, all on his own while the apostles slept, and someone, who wasn't there, wrote in explicit detail what happened. It's laughable....right? 🤣. And people believe this rubbish. It's amazing what people believe with no demonstrable evidence, but tell someone the paint is wet, and they will touch it to validate the statement. 🤷🏼
For God so loved that world, that he drowned everyone, which would have included children, infants, babies, and pregnant women. Thank goodness that too is a myth.
It is well known that the Gospels weren't written until after 40 to 80 years after Jesus lived here and went to Heaven because people were expecting him to come back very soon and so there was no need to write anything down about him, which was only done when he didn't come back after that time. Many of the Hindu scriptures weren't written down until hundreds or thousands of years after the events or ideas mentioned in them because of writing not having been invented before then and were passed on by word of mouth down the generations, and nobody is questioning the accuracy of these sexual or architectural or other teachings. What can be accurately relayed after hundreds or thousands of years can certainly be accurately relayed after only 40 to 80 years. Secondly, the Gospels only said that Peter, James, and John were sleeping and not hearing what Jesus said, but Jesus had 9 other main disciples and other lesser disciples and followers, who could easily have overheard what Jesus said, while still keeping a respectful distance away, and then reported what they overheard to the rest of the disciples. Since you insist on believing whatever anyone says that God did, when it's something negative, though you don't believe anything else in the Bible, which is a double standard and hypocrisy on your part, we should all believe any rotten things that other people are saying that you did, following your example with God. And what if you started being taken to court and imprisoned over what people made up about you? Do unto God, too, as you would have others do unto you, and don't be a sucker for any non-loving lies that anyone makes up about Him!! How foolish and naive would it be for people to believe whatever is said about celebrities in the National Enquirer, even though they can and will deny and fight back against those lies!! People have been lying about God and making Him say and do whatever they wanted to make Him say and do for thousands of years, to "justify" themselves and make Him go along with them, and those lies are no less ridiculous because God won't be bothered with refuting all of these lies, being still what He is, no matter what anyone says that He is, or interfere with their free will to keep them from telling lies, since He wants them to decide for themselves not to lie and didn't want robots. Believing everything written about God in the Bible is as gullible as believing everything written about celebrities in the tabloids. God is love and so whatever isn't love in the Bible or anywhere else isn't God or from God.
I think we all know why he didn't come back when he was expected to, John, don't we? It's the exact same reason why no one comes back when they are dead. It's simply because they are ........how can I say it? Dead, deceased, expired, no more, lifeless, gone! 🤷🏼
Where is your evidence that your Jesus friend went to a place called heaven? Did you read that somewhere?
Despite what you might have read somewhere, John, Elvis is also dead. 😜🤣
Lionheart where do you get your knowledge from? Do you have proof of anything that you say. All the knowledge you have is from someone else. How do you know if your right? Maybe you are wrong and the Bible is right and Satan is using like a little puppet trying to deceive others and he is laughing at you saying what a fool...but you can believe books from the past the people you don't know but you cut down people who believe in the bible. The bible was written through inspiration of the holy spirit. But you think you know it all though when you are believing what others said about the bible. I will leave you alone and let satan toy with you some more. He has to bow before my God. Anything you say against God you are doing what he wants...to bad if you only knew the real truth. It's sad how people are so full of pride and think they know more than the Creator of us all...shame on you
David, perhaps you can educate me then. Do you have any evidence that Adam, Eve, Moses, and Abraham, and even your God were real? If you can’t, I will then assume they were not, and that your book of claims is false.
Perhaps the god you believe in could cure all children of cancer, as a starters, instead of helping players score goals, or pass exams 🤭
Thank you for your comment.
Oh no, even more bologna from someone who desperately tries to prove that Jesus existed and fails each time.
Are you trying to say he didn't exist, Daniel? I guess that's possible.
No I am showing how desperate you seem to be to try and prove he did not exist. So I just used your thoughts of your last posts. I can no more prove he did exist then you can prove he didnt. Thats why Lion its called FAITH. I have faith he did exist, and seemingly by your past posts you have faith he didnt. Cant get any more straight foreword then that.
Your statements are very contradicting, Daniel, which I'm not surprised, because your comments seem to be all over the place. Your first statement says, and I quote:
"Oh no, even more bologna from someone who desperately tries to prove that Jesus existed and fails each time."
I have never tried to prove he exists, Daniel.
Then you say:
"I am showing how desperate you seem to be to try and prove he did not exist."
I am not trying to prove he did not exist, Daniel.
I do not have any "FAITH" that he did, or did not, exist. On the other hand, due to the absence of facts, you have no choice but to have faith he, and your god, did exist because you want to believe they did.
Facts, along with demonstrable evidence, are important in this life, unless you want to just accept things on a wing, and a prayer, because it feels good, which of course is no different to how every other religionist on earth goes about believing their religion, and god, is the real one.
Sorry but they are no such thing. You have repeatedly tried to claim that a deity does not exist. I have said that one does. You have tried to claim I am wrong and as I said my FAITH says one exists, YOUR FAITH says one does not. Its all on how you want to try and cut the apple.
It's ok,, Daniel, you don't need to be sorry. Please carry on with your belief structure if it gives you some satisfaction, and need, to get through life.
If you don't believe in Jesus then don't be on here this one is for believers
Jesus is our lord God bless everyone amen
But what about Lord Krishna?
Nicki Minaj Jackson Is President Donnie Duane Jackson Wife We are Ministry of Justice For God bless you all
I would like a sermon based on Ezekiel 23:20. Does anyone have one?
Ezekiel 23:20 is one of the most popular Bible versus with young church goers.
I read somewhere that many of the books of the bible were removed.Does this mean that the bible is incomplete?Who and why did these people take it upon themselves to do this deed?
no. There are 2 volumes of Pseudigraphical works not accepted into the e Old Testament and 2 volumes of Apocryphal works that are New Testament related. Then there are the Dead Sea Scrolls and Nag Hammadi scrolls. None are allowed in the Bible for various reasons due to who wrote them. Some very spurious, some extremely heretical. But all are good to study for historical reasons . The Bible is complete. The extra books which the Catholics, Orthodox and Anglicans have are very good for historical and doctrinal reasons. With those from the Catholic Traditions our Bible is complete.
I suggest a good book written by REAL scholars on how we got our Bible. Most Christians don’t know and can’t answer your question. There are good logical answers, but caution some books put titles on them to get Christians interested and in the book lead them away, putting doubt in their minds. Example Bart Ehrman, so called Professor of Religious studies. I have read several of his books, and for the untrained he can put doubt in your mind, but his points are countered by other scholars who make mush of his assertions.
BTW - Good sermon Rev Tompkinson.
What was left out and who did the deed depends on which bible you're talking about.
The typical Protestant Bible has a total of 66 books (39 Old Testament and 27 New Testament.
A canonical Catholic Bible has a total of 73 books (46 OT and 27 NT)
An Eastern Orthodox Bible has 81 books.
The Ethiopian Bible has 84 books
And the controversial Slave Bible only contains parts from just 14 books.
On a side note: The controversial Book of Enoch is only recognized by the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church and the Eritrean Orthodox Tewahedo Church. The Book of Enoch is also popular among Ancient Astronaut theorists.
Indeed, Christ Jesus is our LORD,our SAVIOR, our GOD and our Shepherd and Guide. Power is, some people in this God's World do as they please,to such an extend that they have POWER to repeal some Books in the Bible, and put it the way they please. We all know that our Bible has 66 Books" O.T. has 39 and N.T. has 27) Now,who you to change that? FOR SURE AND I BET YOU ARE NOT ABOVE GOD. Happy for you to have such power. We, believe in Christ Jesus as GOD. Thanking you so much to allow me an opportunity to pass my comments. Reverend Stephen Mohlaloga Makgoathane South Africa
Do you have any demonstrable evidence, Stephen, to support all of your claims, or are you just relying on stories that you’ve read in a book, mostly written by people who never met those they wrote about? 🤷🏼
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I surely don't need proof,nor evidence of my input in this regard.Mr. Lionheart.My points are based on the Holy-Bible, look at my reference to the total number of O.T books to which i said are 39 and the N.T are 27 which gives us a total number of 66 in all. Do i have to demonstrate and proof that to you? And again i said Christ Jesus is GOD, do you need a demonstrayable proof to that? EVIDENCE." Very boldly i say to you: Christ Jesus is Our Shepherd and Guide, no doubt about that. Remember, you talking to a PRIEST, where i don't think it is appropriate or necessary to prove or give evidence to these statements i made. NOT UNLESS YOU DO NOT BELIEVE IN GOD AND CHRIST JESUS." Then the whole matter becomes an argument, which i object to participate in an argument regarding GOD and HIS ONLY SON"" CHRIST JESUS. If you are of the opinion that you and me have to sit down and prove to each other and demonstrate again that JESUS IS LORD. I assure you that we don't have anything to argument about, absolutely. I say to you Christ Jesus is the first born before Creation.We differ in that,if you don't believe or agree with me,I conlude this discussion with you.l say to you further that He (Christ Jesus)is the image of the Invisible GOD. Are you serious you want me to prove, to demonstrate and give evidence that GOD and or Christ Jesus are ALFA AND OMEGA. There is a statement that says: IF YOU CAN'T WIN THEM' THEN JOIN THEM. That's my conclusion to your concern. I AM A FULLY BORN-AGAIN CHRISTIAN and a PRIEST who believes in our living GOD THE FATHER, THE SON AND THE HOLY SPIRIT. That's me Sir' with due Respect. REVEREND STEPHEN TREVOR MOHLALOGA MAKGOATHANE (SA)