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Archive for September 2016

Drinking from a Bowl

Sermon at King of Glory, Elgin, IL

September 25, 2016 Propers 21

As a little boy there was only one way that I enjoyed drinking my milk.  That special milk, was the milk that was left after my sugary breakfast cereal was done.  But there was a problem, my mom wouldn’t let drink the milk from the bowl, but insisted that I used the spoon.  Which took forever.  I was told, that is is not polite to lift up the bowl and doing from it.

Obviously my mother was not around during the time of Amos.  Because God’s people were drinking from bowls.  They were not drinking sugary milk, but wine from the bowls.  Why a bowl, because the bowl would hold more, and probably more important they could.

Amos words from out Old Testament lesson were words of warning. The warning was not for breaking my mom’s protocol, nor was the warning given because they were living the life of luxury, for God does indeed bless people with many gifts.  The warning is because they had forgotten who had given them the gifts.

vs6 states who drink wine in bowls and then further defines the real problem, but are not grieved over the ruin of Joseph.

The house of Joseph is a reference to the Northern Kingdom, Israel. which was destroyed and taken into exile.  Which happened because the people were not putting their trust in God, but in the gifts that God gave them.

So do we drink from the Bowl? Drinking from the Bowl is a sign of gluttony  and self focus, forgetting who is the one who gives the gifts.

There is an alternative,  drinking from the Cup.


Matthew 20:20–23 (ESV)

A Mother’s Request

20 Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came up to him with her sons, and kneeling before him she asked him for something. 21 And he said to her, “What do you want?” She said to him, “Say that these two sons of mine are to sit, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your kingdom.” 22 Jesus answered, “You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I am to drink?” They said to him, “We are able.” 23 He said to them, “You will drink my cup, but to sit at my right hand and at my left is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared by my Father.”

Matthew 26:36–41 (ESV)

Jesus Prays in Gethsemane

36 Then Jesus went with them to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to his disciples, “Sit here, while I go over there and pray.” 37 And taking with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, he began to be sorrowful and troubled. 38 Then he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me.” 39 And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.” 40 And he came to the disciples and found them sleeping. And he said to Peter, “So, could you not watch with me one hour? 41 Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

Be carful for what you ask, the son of Zebedee yes we can drink from the cup.  Jesus shows us a cup of suffering.

It is a lot easier to drink from the bowl.


Drinking from the Cup of Jesus does bring suffering, forgiveness and strength, which also makes this a cup of Joy.

1 Corinthians 11:25–29 (ESV)

25 In the same way also he took the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.” 26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.

27 Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty concerning the body and blood of the Lord. 28 Let a person examine himself, then, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup. 29 For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment on himself.

The Lord’s Supper also call the Eucharist.  Eucharist meaning giving Thank, in which we giving thanks as St. Pauls states you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.  Proclaiming the Lord’s Death is proclaiming the forgiveness of our sins.  Because in the Lord’s Supper the Eucharist we receive that forgiveness which is the greatest of God’s gifts to us.  In this gift we have life and salvation.

Luther reminds us in the Large Catechism: We must never regard the sacrament as a harmful thing from which we should flee, but as a pure, wholesome, soothing medicine that aids you and gives life in both soul and body. For where the soul is healed, the body is helped as well. Why, then, do we act as if the sacrament were a poison that would kill us if we ate of it?

Kolb, R., Wengert, T. J., & Arand, C. P. (2000). The Book of Concord: the confessions of the Evangelical Lutheran Church (p. 474). Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press.

AS Luther but it Why, then, do we act as if the sacrament were a poison that would kill us if we ate of it?  because as Amos had to deal with God’s people who forgot about God’s gifts.  Who were living in luxury but failing to remember that they need  God’s deliverance.  But when the rings of this world consume us we loose site that we are sinners in needs of God’s grace.  And when suffering or anything that threatens to disturb our luxury we may quickly abandon God to return to our life of drinking from the Bowl.

How do we live in creation? Do we relate to it as a place full of “things” we can use for whatever need we want to fulfill and whatever goal we wish to accomplish? Or do we see the many gifts that God has blessed us with and give thank to God. If we only use the things of this world, we cannot recognize that its God’s gifts because we are approaching it as if we are its owners. Drinking from the Bowl. But when we realize to all that surrounds us which includes us as God’s Gift, then we are recognizing God for who He is. Our Creator, Redeemer, and Sanctifier.




Written by dballa

September 25, 2016 at 6:33 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Genesis Quotes from Luther

Luther, M. (1999). Luther’s works, vol. 1: Lectures on Genesis: Chapters 1-5. (J. J. Pelikan, H. C. Oswald, & H. T. Lehmann, Eds.) (Vol. 1). Saint Louis: Concordia Publishing House.

The first chapter is written in the simplest language; yet it contains matters of the utmost importance and very difficult to understand. It was for this reason, as St. Jerome asserts, that among the Hebrews it was forbidden for anyone under thirty to read the chapter or to expound it for others. They wanted one to have a good knowledge of the entire Scripture before getting to this chapter. p.3

Human reason cannot rise to a higher level than to conclude that the world is eternal and that countless men have gone before us and are coming after us; here it is forced to call a halt. But from this very conclusion there follows the most dangerous opinion that the soul is mortal, for philosophy knows no more than one infinite. (Aristotle, quotes by Luther) p.3-4

If, then, we do not understand the nature of the days or have no insight into why God wanted to make use of these intervals of time, let us confess our lack of understanding rather than distort the words, contrary to their context, into a foreign meaning. p.5

we assert that Moses spoke in the literal sense, not allegorically or figuratively, i.e., that the world, with all its creatures, was created within six days, as the words read. If we do not comprehend the reason for this, let us remain pupils and leave the job of teacher to the Holy Spirit. p.5


Genesis 1:1 (ESV) In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.

So far as I can see, Moses until now makes no mention of the first day because later on those unordered masses of the crude heaven and earth were given shape, and, as it were, highly perfected and made separate entities. What he later calls the abyss and water—namely, the formless and crude mass of water, not yet arranged in an orderly manner and not yet graced with its specific shape—this he designates here as heaven. But if Moses had expressed himself differently and had stated: “In the beginning God said: ‘Let there be heaven, etc.,” there would later on have been no place for the repetition of the word “He said” when these formless waters were illuminated and light was created. The very simple meaning of what Moses says, therefore, is this: Everything that is, was created by God. p.6-7

Genesis 1:2 (ESV)  The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.




Written by dballa

September 3, 2016 at 6:58 pm

Posted in Study, Uncategorized

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