Throw it His way/ Matthew 18/ Pr. Lucas Andre Albrecht / September 10th, 2023/ Season of Pentecost
Mount Olive Lutheran Church, Regina, SK
Text: Matthew 18:15-20
Theme:Throw it his way
Sermon outline. You can listen to the full sermon on the Website: www.mountolive.ca
Intr - You bought a car and it is presents a manufacturing problem. The maker of that car issues a recall to all those types and models for a free fixing of the problem. What would you do? Would you sit down and complain about your bad luck, or about the employee's mistake, or the manufacturer who just can get things well done? Or would you take your car down to the shop, have your problem fixed, and happily carry on now that your car is doing fine?
There are things in life way more important than cars. People. However, because of the innate defect we are born with, sin happens, and relationships are strained. What should we do then? Should we sit down and cry, complaining about sin and its consequences? Should we be mad at life, or avoid people we love? Should we always blame the other side?
It doesn’t seem to be the best Christian approach. A vehicle costs you a good sum of money for sure but, hey, it is a material good. Now if for a car we are ready to do whatever needed to have it fixed, why do we sometimes accept a life in half? A semi-marriage? Why do we leave family relationships waiting for recall without addressing the problem?
The Gospel today talks aobut forgiveness. But is is less about a one of list of procedures, and more of a lifestyle. The last part should be really the last part. The process of mediating anc achieving repentance and forgiveness is the most imoprtante part.
Be forgiven - Forgive - Repeat
When we have sin, there is one thing we need to do> throw it His way.
It reminds me of an episode that happened to us many years ago. There was this time I got in the car on Tuesday, and something didn't smell right. On Wednesday, I noticed the same thing, and on Thursday too. The bad smell was constant and each day stronger. On Friday, when I needed to open my car’s trunk, I found the reason for the stinky problem: a big garbage bag with waste from the previous week. We used to live in a place where our house was some 300 feet away from the garbage bins. On Monday, to avoid having to walk that distance I put the bag in the trunk as I left for work. And then I forgot to throw it away.
Five days carrying garbage inside the car... What should I have done? It wouldn't have helped if I decided to throw an entire bottle of perfume back there to cover it up and make the car smell better. It wouldn’t help at all if I tried to pretend the garbage wasn’t there; the situation would only get worse. The only thing I had to do was the obvious: to grab the bag and throw it away.
This is what happens when we refuse to reconcile. The stinky problem doesn’t go away, it just gets worse. We can’t try to ignore it, to “perfume it” with rational excuses, but it will linger. St. John wrote: “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:8-9). In repentance and faith, we first acknowledge our own sin. Then we get rid of it by throwing it His way. Jesus has paid the price of our filthy sins to give us a new heart, ready to keep rolling on the road of every day’s life. From His forgiveness, we are invited to work on forgiveness in our relationships in need of reconciliation. We can throw the sin garbage His way and receive a fresh start, a fresh heart with the good smell of love, grace, and peace.
Sin is not the Manufacturer's fault, but He still issued the recall. He sent His Son who paid that price and allowed us to escape the junk yard of hell to be safely taken care of in His arms. Forgiven, now we are prompted to recall relationships. If someone sins against us, it’s time to go and talk with them. We are invited to talk, to confess, to forgive. His Holy Spirit calls us again and again to lead a life where forgiveness and reconciliation are always being called for. A call, and recall, that is always correctly done when based on the Manufacturer’s Handbook: The Bible.
This is a short and objective sermon about a wide, and at the sime time, simple topic our Christian life
-Sin is a reality;
-You don’t excise it., you confess it.
--You are forgiven;
Cc - For me, that episode was a good reminder of the importance of checking frequently two things: my car’s trunk, and my heart.
Photo by Suparerg Suksai from Pexels: https://www.pexels.com/photo/black-plastic-bag-near-concrete-wall-5994772/