Graduation speakers are fond of extolling the great things you will do after graduation. Your great achievements are only a beginning. With the education you received, you can do anything. Wall Street, Pennsylvania Avenue, or Rodeo Drive, breathlessly awaiting you to do that thing that you do, with them.
This sermon explores the idea of silence. Good Friday, says Willimon, is a time for confession, repentance, honesty and candid self-examination. Jesus is going this night to do His work. Now, in the silence, in the aloneness, we have our work to do as well.
On the cross, the world did all it could to Jesus. At Easter, God did all God could to the world. And the earth shook. As this sermon attests, when the stone was rolled away, we got our first glimpse of a new world, a world where death doesn't have the last word, a world where injustice is made right, and innocent suffering is vindicated by the intrusion of a powerful God.
This isn't kid's stuff, pablum to be spoon fed by pet preachers to house-broken congregations who have lost their teeth. This is a dark, threatening word.
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Sermon on the Mount: A Second Look (Text: Matthew 5:27-48)