Sermons by Drew Downs

110 of 211 items

Bear fruit worthy of repentance

Bear fruit worthy of repentance

When we talk about repentance, do we also rejoice? Why do we so struggle with being changed by God, turned and shaped, being loved? The focus is not on what needs to change, but to let yourself be changed Advent 3B  |  Luke 3:7-18 John is not holding back! Whew! I don’t want to be […]

Into the Wild Again

by
Into the Wild Again

In Advent, we feel the subversive nature of following Jesus, the seduction of power, and the quiet call to walk into the wilderness. Jesus, John, and the subversive nature of Advent Advent 2C  |  Luke 3:1-6 It must be Advent 2 again, because here comes John! Reading about this wild man in the wilderness is […]

A New Chance

by
A New Chance

In Luke 21:25-36, we get a vision of the end which usually trips our fears, but Jesus reminds us that he’ll be with us, standing against the fear. In Advent, we begin with the end, because the end is only the beginning. Advent 1C  |  Luke 21:25-36 There’s a saying: Begin with the end in […]

tearing down temples

by
tearing down temples

In Mark’s Little Apocalypse, Jesus invites us to see what we’d rather avoid: not only the finitude of existence but the challenge of a life of trusting God. How our temples deny our trust Proper 28B  |  Mark 13:1-8 I don’t envy the disciples. Here they are, marveling the enormity of the Temple, looking at the […]

Devouring Their Houses

by
Devouring Their Houses

Jesus doesn’t simply criticize the priests for their hubris, he exposes the whole system for its corruption, exploitation, and rejection of the poor. of poverty and hubris in the Temple Proper 27B  |  Mark 12:38-44 Less than a week after starting at my first congregation out of seminary, I went to my first clericus—a meeting of […]

Love Rising

by
Love Rising

In Mark 10:46-52, Jesus is interrupted on his journey to Jerusalem. But this final moment embodies the discipleship journey itself. In Bartimaeus, we have the true disciple and a vision of hope Proper 25B | Mark 10:46-52 If we just cracked open our Bibles to this passage in Mark, I think we’d be excused if […]

Jesus Keeps Walking

by
Jesus Keeps Walking

After Jesus makes his third passion prediction, his followers still don’t understand what it means to follow Jesus. And most of us don’t either. For Jesus, it isn’t just confronting power — it’s rejecting glory. Proper 24B | Mark 10:35-45 A few weeks ago, when we hosted our neighbors for our annual big blow-out communion […]

Becoming Beloved

by
Becoming Beloved

Jesus wants us to talk about money. I know you don’t want me to talk about money. And you know I don’t want to talk about money. But here we are. Just like I didn’t want to talk about divorce last week, but there it was. Jesus wants us dealing with important stuff. Jesus is saying […]

It’s not really about divorce

by
not really about divorce

When Jesus is asked about divorce in Mark 10:2-16, we act like he’s given us an answer. What he’s given us is a whole new question. Again Jesus pushes us to see the forest, not the trees. Proper 22B  |  Mark 10:2-16 Let me say at the top that Jesus doesn’t condemn divorce. Let’s first […]

Out of Line

by
Out of Line

In Mark 9, we get a vision of the flipped script, the powerless raised up and the powerful brought low. And still, we struggle to see ourselves in it. Jesus warns that being a stumbling block deprives us all Proper 21B  | Mark 9:38-50 Is the second time ever the charm? At this point in Mark, […]