Worship service – January 22, 2023 – “Jesus’ Parables”

Everyone likes a good story!  As a child, many enjoyed hearing stories that began “once upon a time.” In Jesus’s day, people also enjoyed stories, and Jesus frequently made his very barbed points through humor or as a riddle in the type of story called a parable.  This week Pastor Linda begins a short sermon series on some of Jesus’s parables, with an eye for they apply to us today.

Our services are being held with in-person attendance at 10 a.m. Sunday morning.  Today’s service is provided below in its entirety in video format.  Note that closed captioning is available when “CC” appears in white at the bottom of the video panel. Click the CC to see the text; as it is done with an automated service, there may be errors in transcription.

Our Scripture Reading is Mark 4:10-12 NRSV. The gospel of Mark was the first of our four gospels to be written. It is believed to have been written after the death of the disciple Peter, about 35 years after Jesus’s crucifixion, around 64 to 75 AD. Mark seems to be a missionary companion of Peter and Paul, but never personally knew Jesus. His point in this writing was to encourage the members of the early church, especially as they faced persecution by Nero.

Today’s passage is from a section describing how Jesus would teach using the form of the parable. Mark’s words suggest that Jesus used parables to hide the truth, instead of our more common understanding that they were to make the truth plain to all who heard. But perhaps a better understanding is that for the early Gentile Christians, everything begins with a faith relationship with God, and without that, the whole message is foolishness.

Rev. Dr. Linda Holbrook
Rev. Dr. Linda Holbrook

The message today from Rev. Dr. Linda Holbrook is “Jesus’ Parables.”

Pastor Linda notes that Jesus used parables to illustrate three things:

  1. What is the Kingdom of God like?
  2. What is God like?
  3. What is discipleship like?

Where the Spirit of the Lord is there is the one true Church whose faith we support with our prayers, our presence, our giving, our witness and our service.
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Credits and copyrights

  • “Bring Forth the Kingdom” words and music by Marty Haugen. © 1986 GIA Publications, Inc.
  • “Hymn of Promise” words and music by Natalie Sleeth. © 1986 Hope Publishing Company. CCLI song #126529, CCLI License #2718708.
  • “Sanctuary” words and music by John Thompson and Randy Scruggs.  © 1982 Full Armor Publishing Company (Admin. by Peermusic III, Ltd.); Whole Armor Publishing Company (Admin. by Peermusic III, Ltd.).   CCLI song #24140, CCLI License #2718708.
  • “We Walk by Faith” words by Henry Alford, music attr. to Hugh Wilson.  Public domain.  CCLI song #3613764, CCLI License #2718708.
  • “Give Me Jesus”  words and music African American spiritual.  Music arr. by Verolga Nix.  Words public domain, music ©1981 Abingdon Press (Admin. by Music Services, Inc.). CCLI song #7073628, CCLI License #2718708.
  • “Praise God,  From Whom All Blessings Flow” words by Thomas Ken, music from Geistliche Kirchengesänge.  Public domain). CCLI song #1364029, CCLI License #2718708.
  • “Trees of the Field” words by Steffi Geiser Ruben, music by Stuart Dauermann.  © 1975 Lillenas Publishing Company (Admin. by Music Services, Inc.). CCLI song #20546, CCLI License #2718708.
  • All other text on this page © The United Methodist Church of Morgan Hill.

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