HomeSunday Sermon SeriesSunday Sermon Series October 22, 2023

Sunday Sermon Series October 22, 2023

Whether you call them homilies, sermons, or talks, there’s a lot you can learn from the spiritual leaders in our community. While in a perfect world, you’d have time to listen to everyone, that simply isn’t possible for most with limited time to spare. To help, we’ve surfaced and summarized the teachings from the audio sermons of some of the most influential priests and pastors from around town and in the Christian sphere.

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Fr. Mike Schmitz


In his homily, Father Mike Schmitz begins by sharing a personal story about getting lost while training for an ultramarathon. He highlights the frustration of not knowing whether he’s on the right path and how each step taken might lead further away from the desired destination. He draws a parallel between this feeling of being lost in life and the uncertainty people often experience regarding their vocation or life’s purpose.

Father Mike emphasizes the importance of not just knowing one’s vocation but also understanding that life is a journey filled with preparation and challenges. He uses the example of King David, who, despite knowing he was anointed to be the next king of Israel, had to go through various experiences and roles before assuming the throne. David’s journey taught him the skills and qualities he would need as a leader.

The homily underscores the idea that life in the promised vocation or destination continues to require effort and growth. Father Mike encourages the congregation to embrace endurance, hope, and perseverance as they navigate the space between the promise and the fulfillment of their call. He reminds the listeners that every step they take, even when they feel lost, is part of a larger plan, shaping them into the person they are meant to be. Ultimately, he highlights the need for trust and faith in the journey, believing that every step is purposeful.

Listen to the full version here.

Buckhead Church

Under the Circumstances

Andy Stanley’s sermon focuses on a story from the Bible about Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead. In this sermon, Andy highlights that circumstances, regardless of how extreme or negative they are, should not be considered an indicator of God’s absence or silence. He argues that Jesus orchestrated the events leading to Lazarus’ death and resurrection to demonstrate that God is aware, caring, and present in difficult times.

Andy points out that most people are familiar with the story, but he encourages the audience to emotionally connect with the story’s profound emotions. He emphasizes that this narrative includes grief, anger, sickness, death, disappointment, and embarrassment. Jesus intentionally waited for Lazarus to die while his sisters watched, causing confusion and anger among the people who loved him.

The core message of this sermon revolves around Jesus’s statement that he was glad he wasn’t there, not because he didn’t care but so that people might believe. Andy suggests that the important question is, “Believe what?” The answer lies in understanding that the Father sent the Son to demonstrate what the Father is like, revealing that God is compassionate, concerned, and caring. By raising Lazarus from the dead, Jesus shows that there is always hope, even in the darkest circumstances, and that God cares for His people. This story is meant to assure believers that God is with them and to affirm the emotions and questions people have when God seems absent or unresponsive. Andy Stanley concludes by emphasizing the importance of recognizing God’s compassion and submitting one’s cares and concerns to Him because He cares for you.

Listen to the full version here.

Cathedral of Christ The King

In Fr. Joe Wagner’s homily, he starts by referencing the famous movie “Jerry Maguire” and the memorable line “Show me the money.” He uses this to draw a parallel with Jesus in the Gospel. The Pharisees are trying to trap Jesus with their questions, and Jesus simplifies things by saying, “Show me the coin.” He uses this to illustrate the importance of recognizing what belongs to Caesar and what belongs to God. Caesar’s image is on the coin, so it belongs to him. In contrast, humans bear the image of God, making us belong to God.

Fr. Joe highlights that God gives us existence, life, and salvation, while governments provide various services. Thus, he emphasizes that we must give to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s, focusing on recognizing our indebtedness to God and acknowledging His ultimate generosity.

The homily delves into the liturgy of the Eucharist, where the congregation is invited to participate in the offering. This offering extends beyond material resources and includes joys, sorrows, sufferings, and ultimately the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, who offers Himself to the Father for our salvation. Fr. Joe encourages the congregation to reflect on giving everything to God, acknowledging that everything they have comes from Him. He emphasizes that through the Eucharist, we receive God’s generosity in return, as He offers Himself completely to us, bringing salvation. The congregation is urged to be conscious of offering their lives and possessions to God and preparing to receive His grace and salvation in the Eucharist.

Listen to the full version here.

Passion City Church

All on the Altar

Louie Giglio delves into the definition of worship as a response to God, both personally and corporately, for who He is and what He has done. He emphasizes the two key elements that should fuel our worship: acknowledging God for who He is and recognizing His mighty deeds. Louie Giglio wants to help the congregation understand that there should be no end to their praise.

He discusses the idea that God’s attributes and His actions should inspire continuous worship. He emphasizes that God is eternal, and our understanding of Him is only scratching the surface. Our praise should be unending because of who God is and what He has done.

Giglio illustrates the concept by referring to the song in Exodus 15, where the Israelites praise God for His deliverance and attribute names and actions to Him. He encourages the audience to dig deep into the attributes of God and reflect on them, thereby enhancing their worship experience.

The sermon suggests a practical approach to worship, focusing on one attribute each day for 30 days, allowing individuals to observe and praise God in a more personalized and specific manner. Louie Giglio emphasizes that understanding God’s attributes and the depth of His character will lead to a transformative worship experience and a renewed perspective on life.

Listen to the full version here.

Trinity Anglican Church

In this sermon by Kris McDaniel, he begins by acknowledging that the message he’s sharing draws inspiration from N.T. Wright, a prominent New Testament scholar and Bishop in the Church of England. McDaniel emphasizes that Jesus is incredibly wise, not just known for miracles, the cross, or the resurrection, but also for His ability to teach people how to handle difficult conversations. He discusses a passage where people tried to trap Jesus by asking a question about taxes, highlighting Jesus’ skill in not falling into the trap.

McDaniel emphasizes the idea that there is a space between stimulus and response, a concept also endorsed by Victor Frankl, author of “Man’s Search for Meaning.” This space represents freedom, where humans can choose how to respond in alignment with the will of God. McDaniel points out that in today’s highly reactive world, we often wish we could unsay or undo things we’ve said and done, but Jesus offers guidance on how to hold this space and respond with purpose and intentionality.

The sermon shifts its focus to the concept of being made in the image of God. McDaniel interprets Jesus’ statement “Render to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s” as an affirmation that humans are created in the image of God. He stresses that this doesn’t mean perfection, but that humans reflect God’s likeness. McDaniel also highlights N.T. Wright’s perspective, notes that human dignity and the likeness of God should change how we treat one another, even our enemies.

McDaniel elaborates on four ways in which humans reflect God’s image: an instinctual longing for justice, an inborn appreciation of beauty, a quest for authentic spirituality, and a search for meaningful relationships. Despite the elusiveness and imperfections of these qualities in human life, people continue to seek them, and this persistence stems from their divine connection.

The sermon concludes with McDaniel encouraging the congregation to recognize and celebrate the aspects of their lives that reflect God’s image. He also encourages them to bless and affirm those qualities in others. Finally, he leads the congregation to prepare for communion by acknowledging their sins and faults before coming forward to be fed by God.

Listen to the full version here.

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