Message

Jesus Kept Speaking To His Enemies

❖ Video ❖ Audio (Message) Jesus Kept Speaking To His Enemies (John 8:21-29) Mari Ikeda Today we continue in the Gospel of John, and today we will read 8:21-29. What we see throughout this passage is that, as the title suggests, Jesus continued to speak to His enemies who were tormenting Him. Jesus did not give up on the Jewish leaders who were trying to kill Him, and He wanted to save them as much as possible. Jesus taught us to love our enemies. So today’s story could be interpreted as teaching us that we must follow Jesus’ example and continue to communicate with those who torment us. But I…

Being known by God

❖ Video ❖ Audio (Message) Being known by God (Psalm 139) Andy Nagahara Today’s psalm is Psalm 139. Let’s read it in four parts. 1. We who do not want to be known (0-10) 0 For the director of music. Of David. A psalm.1 O LORD, you have searched me and you know me.2 You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar.3 You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.4 Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O LORD.5 You hem me in–behind and before; you have laid your hand upon…

Where Do We Come From and Where Are We Going?

❖ Video ❖ Audio (Message) Where Do We Come From and Where Are We Going? (John 8:12-20) Mari Ikeda Today we continue with the Gospel of John, and today we will read 8:12-20. We will read the whole passage in three parts. Let’s start with reading the first 12-14 verses. A. Jesus is our guiding light. 12 When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”13 The Pharisees challenged him, “Here you are, appearing as your own witness; your testimony is not valid.” 14 Jesus answered, “Even if…

Give thanks unto the Lord!

❖ Video ❖ Audio (Message) Give thanks unto the Lord! (Psalm 138) Andy Nagahara Today’s text, Psalm 138, is a song that focuses on giving thanks to God and praising Him. Over the past few weeks, we have thought about the problems in our society and how those who believe in God should live in that society. Today’s text teaches us the source of the strength to live in a way that pleases God in this difficult society. Let’s read it in three parts. 1. Worship to Strengthen the Soul (1-3) 0 Of David.1 I will praise you, O LORD, with all my heart; before the “gods” I will sing…

Sing the songs of the LORD while in a foreign land

❖ Video ❖ Audio (Message) Sing the songs of the LORD while in a foreign land (Psalm 137) Andy Nagahara The background to today’s text, Psalm 137, is an unforgettable event for the Israelites which is the “Babylonian Captivity” (2 Kings 25:2-21). This incident occurred when the people of Jerusalem, the central city of the southern Kingdom of Judah, was occupied by the powerful Neo-Babylonian nation at the time, and were forcibly relocated and were unable to return to their homeland for over half a century. (At that time, Israel was divided into the southern kingdom of Judah and the northern kingdom of Israel, and the northern kingdom of Israel…

The Male-Dominated Bible and the Universality of Jesus’ Love

❖ Video ❖ Audio (Message) The Male-Dominated Bible and the Universality of Jesus’ Love (John 7:53-8:11) Mari Ikeda (NOTE: It is said that this passage was not originally in the Gospel of John, but was added later. The reason is that it is detached from its context and the characteristics of the text are different from those of the Gospel of John. That is the reason why this passage is in brackets in your Bibles as well. But even with that background, this passage was inserted here early on as part of John’s Gospel as an important episode that teaches us in a nutshell what Jesus’ forgiveness of sins means.…

God’s love endures forever

❖ Video ❖ Audio (Message) God’s love endures forever (Psalm 136) Andy Nagahara Today’s text, Psalm 136, is thought to retain well the form of a hymn sung in temple services, in which the worship leader sings the first half of the verse and the congregation follows with, “God’s love endures forever.” Even today, there are Christian churches that sing hymns of this type during worship services. Today’s keyword is “compassion” in Japanese and “love” in English. The original Hebrew word is “hesed.” If you would like to know more, you can read it on Wikipedia in both Japanese and English. Because this word has a broad meaning, different modern…

My Friend’s Suicide and My Faith

❖ Video ❖ Audio (Message) My Friend’s Suicide and My Faith (Isaiah 53:6, John 10:11-16) Mari Ikeda We are sorry, but we will not be uploading this sermon in written form. Please watch the video or listen to the audio from the link above. (Isaiah 53:6)We all, like sheep, have gone astray,each of us has turned to our own way;and the LORD has laid on himthe iniquity of us all. (John 10)11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. …14 “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— 15 just as the Father knows me and…

Hallelujah

❖ Video ❖ Audio (Message) Hallelujah (Psalm 135) Andy Nagahara Today’s text, Psalm 135, is a somewhat longer psalm that begins and ends with “Hallelujah.” Many people, even those who have never read the Bible, may recognize the word “hallelujah” from the name of a song.In Hebrew, the original language of the Old Testament, this word is a combination of two original words, “Hallel” (praise) and “Ya (Yahweh),” and means “Praise Yahweh.” However, most English Bibles do not use the word “Hallelujah” as it is, but instead translate it into English as “Praise the LORD.” Even in the NIV that we use, “Hallelujah” only appears four times in Revelation chapter…

Ambassadors of Reconciliation

❖ Video ❖ Audio (Message) Ambassadors of Reconciliation (John 7:45-52, 2 Corinthians 5:14-21) Mari Ikeda  As a new school year or a new fiscal year starts in April in Japan, many of you may have been in a new environment from April. I wonder how you are feeling after a month since then. Even if there are no major changes in our living environment, we live our lives interacting with various people on a daily basis, and there are both positive and negative stimulations. I work at a social welfare shelter during the week, and this past April my boss was replaced. When the personnel change was announced in March,…