Sunday, December 28, 2014

Advent Season 2014


Have you ever stopped to think about the night Jesus was born?  I mean really thought about it?  We get this image (mostly from our Christmas carols) that leave us all warm and fuzzy as we song “Silent Night, Holy Night, all is calm…”  Really?  Was it?  Was it really a calm night there in the cattle shed where Mary and Joseph were spending the night?  We get this image, “The cattle are lowing the baby awakes, but little Lord Jesus no crying he makes…” Are you kidding me!?!? I have to believe that the night Jesus was born was anything but calm, and anything but silent. 

This season we are going to look at the birth, life and death of Jesus through the eyes of Mary – the one who was closest to him throughout all of his years of ministry.  And we’re going to do something a little different in that we’ll look at their lives in reverse. 
First, we will examine Christ’s death and how it affected Mary.  What did all of those promises given to her from an angel years before mean as she was watching them being fulfilled now?  Next we will examine the scene from Luke when Jesus goes to the temple and begins to teach.  Mary was surprised, astounded and astonished as she must have, maybe for the first time, realized there was something very different about her child.  Following that we will look at the miraculous announcement that she would be pregnant and what those first few months looked like as she went to Elizabeth’s house.

Overall, my prayer is that we, as a church, will engage the different texts that we talk about and that we will examine our own lives and what the coming of Christ means for us, even as we watch it unfold in Mary’s life as well.  I hope you will join us every week throughout this Advent season and allow the glory of the Lord to be seen in how you worship Christ, the newborn King.

Blessings,

Matt


DATESERMON TITLESCRIPTURE
11/30/2014The Piercing of Mary's SoulLuke 2:33-35
 12/7/2014It Was NOT a Silent Night Luke 2:41-51
 12/21/2014There's Something About Mary  Luke 1:39-55
 12/24/2014 Christmas Eve Message Luke 2:1-8
 12/28/2014 Another Year in the Vineyard Luke 13:6-9

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Confirmation Sunday

On Sunday, November 9, 2014, First Presbyterian Pascagoula celebrated welcoming the reception of 21 new Confirmands into membership. These young people participated in a Confirmation Class over the past few months led by Rev. Matt Mitchell assisted by several elders serving as mentors to the class.
 
At its October meeting the Session accepted the following new members by affirmation of
faith: Bailey Caroline Bass*, Betina Kruse Boland, Edward Vaughan Boland, Landry Wade
Cain*, William Spence Colmer, Jason Chadwick Crawford, Christopher Todd Daughtry*,
James Quinton Gammill*, Olivia Ann Gunn, James K'darius Jackson, Lorelei Anne
Mitchell, Annie Zan Perkins, Olivia Price Randle, Madison Nicole Scott, Andrew Russel
Summerlin*, Brantly Rath Torjusen, Damion Wiggins, Jacob Aaron Wiggins, Taylor Austin
Williams.
* Also, presented for baptism.
 
 
To listen to Rev. Mitchell's sermon during this services, please click the following link:
 
 

Friday, October 24, 2014

2014 Stewardship Season

During October, Rev. Matt Mitchell's attention turns to the annual Stewardship Campaign. His messages help prepare the hearts of our congregation and friends to decide on annual pledges, which help the Session with budgeting and plans for the coming year.

Just click on the sermon title link to listen, and on the scripture link to go to Biblegateway.com to read the appropriate passage.


Date Sermon LinkScripture Passage
 10/1/2014 God and Money Matthew 6:19-24
10/12/2014 The Numbers Game Mark 12:41-44
10/19/2014A Tithe, Not a Tax Matthew 17:24-27 
 10/26/2014 What's Your Number? Luke 19:1-10
   
   
   

Friday, June 6, 2014

The Book of Judges


We are beginning a new sermon series looking at the Book of Judges. I’ve never done a sermon series on the Book of Judges and I’m guessing you’ve never heard a series on the Book of Judges so this should be interesting. But I am excited to preach it because, as I have been reading it, I find it to be completely relevant and applicable to our lives today. You see, even though 1000’s of years have passed, humanity hasn’t changed much at all. We are still a people that struggles with the same cycles of sin that Israel struggled with in the time of the Judges.

When God called Israel to be his people he called them to be different…to stand out…to be a beacon on a hill. And that worked for a little while.

 
But gradually Israel started looking around and didn’t like being different. They wanted to look like all the other countries and do the same things the other countries did, all while trying to hold on to God as well.

 
And the message was simple…forsake the world and follow me alone…and we have been locked in that battle since then.

 
Will we embrace Christ and follow the way of the cross, or will we embrace the gods around us of wealth, power, popularity, etc. and follow the way of the world? I hope you will join us on this journey as we encounter God’s grace applied to our lives through this challenging book of Judges.



-Rev. Matt Mitchell


Just click on the sermon title link to listen, and on the scripture link to go to Biblegateway.com to read the appropriate passage.


Date            Sermon LinkScripture Passage
 1/12/2014    Introduction to Book of Judges 
 1/19/2014 Half-Hearted Discipleship       Judges 1:1-2:5
 1/26/2014 Walking Among the Idols       Judges 2:6-23
 2/9/2014 To Lead or Not to Lead        Judges 4
 2/16/2014 Rescued for Repentance       Judges 6
 2/23/2014 An Unlikely Hero       Judges 6:11-16
 3/2/2014A Crash Course in Humility        Judges 7
 3/9/2014The Reality of Leadership       Judges 8
 4/27/2014 From Bad to Worse       Judges 9
 5/4/2014 Jepthah Pt. 1 - "God's Sovreignty at Work"       Judges 10-11
 5/11/2014 Jepthah Pt. 2 - "Human Responsibility"       Judges 11-12
 5/25/2014 Samson Part 1       Judges 13
  6/1/2014 Samson Part 2       Judges 14-15
  6/8/2014 Samson & Delilah       Judges 16
6/29/2014 Why We Need Strong Leaders       Judges 17
7/20/2014 The Danger of an Easy Faith       Judges 18
7/27/2014 A People Without a King       Judges 19
 8/3/2014 We Need a King, Part 1       Judges 20
8/10/2014 We Need a King, Part 2       Judges 21
    
                  

Thursday, March 20, 2014

2014 Lenten Series: Who Do You Say That I Am?


DATESERMON TITLESCRIPTURE 
03/16/2014Jesus is the Word of GodJohn 1:1-5; 9-14 
 03/23/2014 Jesus is the Son of God Matthew 26:59-66 
 03/30/2014 Jesus is the Cornerstone 1 Peter 2:4-11 
 04/06/2014 Jesus is the Light of the World John 8:12; 3:16-21 
 04/13/2014 Jesus is Lord Luke 9  
 04/20/2014 Jesus is Messiah John 21:1-19 
    
   

Sunday, January 5, 2014

The Good Shepherd

Elder Mark Edwards served as guest speaker on Sunday, January 5, 2014 as Rev. Matt Mitchell traveled with FPC's Haiti Mission Team. The message was based on John 9:35-10:21.

To listen to this message, please click on the following link:
We Have The Good Shepherd


John 9:35-10:21

New International Version (NIV)

Spiritual Blindness

35 Jesus heard that they had thrown him out, and when he found him, he said, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?”
36 “Who is he, sir?” the man asked. “Tell me so that I may believe in him.”
37 Jesus said, “You have now seen him; in fact, he is the one speaking with you.”
38 Then the man said, “Lord, I believe,” and he worshiped him.
39 Jesus said,[a] “For judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind.”
40 Some Pharisees who were with him heard him say this and asked, “What? Are we blind too?”
41 Jesus said, “If you were blind, you would not be guilty of sin; but now that you claim you can see, your guilt remains.

The Good Shepherd and His Sheep

10 “Very truly I tell you Pharisees, anyone who does not enter the sheep pen by the gate, but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber. 2 The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. 3 The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4 When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. 5 But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger’s voice.” 6 Jesus used this figure of speech, but the Pharisees did not understand what he was telling them.
7 Therefore Jesus said again, “Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. 8 All who have come before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep have not listened to them. 9 I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved.[b] They will come in and go out, and find pasture. 10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12 The hired hand is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. 13 The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing 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 I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep. 16 I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. 17 The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life—only to take it up again. 18 No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.”
19 The Jews who heard these words were again divided. 20 Many of them said, “He is demon-possessed and raving mad. Why listen to him?”
21 But others said, “These are not the sayings of a man possessed by a demon. Can a demon open the eyes of the blind?”

Footnotes:

  1. John 9:39 Some early manuscripts do not have Then the man said … 39 Jesus said.
  2. John 10:9 Or kept safe

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