Sermon Archive

Bartimaeus-Style Commitment

October 28, 2018 (Sunday Morning)

Bible Verses: Psalm 126; Mark 10:46-52 | Daniel Glaze

Prayer for our Jewish neighbors:

 

Loving God, we pray to you this morning with hearts heavy with sadness over violence that took place in a house of worship in Pittsburgh. We cannot fathom what would cause a person to enter a place of sanctuary and worship and seek to do so much harm.

For those who have lost their lives, and especially for their families, we offer our prayers to you. Hold these families close to your own broken heart, and may the souls of the departed rest in eternal peace.

We pray also for those who were injured, including the police officers and first responders who risked their own lives to provide care and safety.

We pray for our brothers and sisters in the Jewish community, especially our friends and partners at Congregation Or Atid nearby. As they are angry, as they express sadness, and as they may even be fearful, may they know this—that their friends at River Road stand with them in solidarity and friendship. Bless Rabbi Hal Schevitz, we pray, as he seeks to lead his congregation forward in hope.

And as hard as it is, we pray for the gunman. For all the hate that filled his heart, forgive and heal him, Lord. For all those who peddle in fear and bow down to the false idols of anti-Semitism and white supremacy, forgive and heal them, Lord. Through your people, God, may they be shown a better way.

And we pray for the breadth of your earthly family, o Lord, which includes every human being, made in your image. May we all continue to work for that day when we shall live together as beloved community, when we shall seek peace and not war, when we shall love and not hate. Hear our prayer, o God, for we ask it in your name, Amen.

 

Sermon “Bartimaeus-Style Commitment”:

On this Commitment Sunday, we will read together the story of Bartimaeus and discuss what his story might teach us regarding our commitment of time, talent, and treasure at River Road Church.

 

Declaration of Commitment

October 28, 2018 (Sunday Morning) | Buddy Sumner

 

Leader: Today we recommit ourselves to learning, serving, and worshiping together as River Road Church. Today we renew our promises with God and with one another, including our promise to give generously to God’s work in and through our church.

Congregation: In that spirit, with thanksgiving we lift up our giving pledges for next year. We do so not to boast in our material blessings, but to express gratitude to our loving and generous God.

Leader: We know that today is not simply about pledges, for we celebrate the numerous ways we seek to commit ourselves to God.

Congregation: We recommit ourselves to walking together as the beloved people of God.

Leader: We recommit ourselves to God’s work of justice in a deeply divided world. We are called to know and love God, nurture each other, and welcome all people in the name of Jesus Christ.

Congregation: Today we reaffirm our hope for our church—a home for the weary traveler, a place of welcome for the poor, a comfort for the distressed, a place of salvation for the sinner, a loving family for young and old—for the good of all and the glory of God.

Leader: As individuals, we make these promises to River Road Church as a whole:

Congregation: I commit to participate regularly, because my presence here matters. I promise to share in service to our community and our world, because the world needs a sign of God’s hope. I promise to support the congregation through my gifts of time and money, because my gifts make a difference. I promise to love my neighbors, even when we don’t agree, because we all have a place at the table.

Leader: Together as a congregation, we make promises to each individual member:

Congregation: We promise to be a church where all are welcome. We promise to use our gifts wisely. We promise to create safe spaces where we can wrestle with the hard questions of life. We promise to provide opportunities to worship, learn, and serve. We promise to bear witness to God’s love for this world.

Leader: Together with the prophet Jeremiah we proclaim with one voice:

Congregation: The Lord will be our God, and we will be God’s people.

 

 

Growing in Commitment, Rooted in Faith

Large Camel…Small Needle

October 14, 2018 (Sunday Morning)

Bible Verses: Psalm 90:12-17; Mark 10:17-31 | Daniel Glaze

The story of the rich young ruler is fascinating to me. As best I can tell, he is the only person in all the gospels to refuse Jesus’ healing. The prescription Jesus offers for eternal life in heaven and a good life on earth is too much. This story is often told as bad news for those with wealth. But I believe there is some good news here too.

 

 

TFC-Adults: Harrowing Hell: Three Traditional Views of Hell in Christian History

October 10, 2018 (Wednesday Night) | Dr. Art Wright, BTSR

“Heaven, Hell, and the Afterlife” Series

Our beliefs about the afterlife are among those that we hold nearest and dearest. They give us hope for the life to come, comfort for this life, and even shape how we live our daily lives. Yet the Biblical texts are not entirely clear regarding what awaits us humans after death; thus, Christians have wrestled with questions about the afterlife for 2,000 years. This series will explore Biblical perspectives on life after death. Topics will include ancient beliefs about the afterlife, perspectives on the afterlife in the Old Testament, three traditional views of Hell in Christian history, and what the Biblical texts really say about Heaven.

 

Knowledge vs. Wisdom

September 23, 2018 (Sunday Morning)

Bible Verses: Psalm 1; James 3:13-4:3 | Daniel Glaze

As we continue along through the Letter of James, we are confronted today by a discussion of wisdom. James asks this question: “Who is wise and understanding among you?” His answer to this question demonstrates what he means when he uses the word wisdom. And when James speaks of wisdom, he clearly means something very different than the accumulation of information in the brain.

Pastor Daniel Glaze will preach a sermon series (5 Sundays) from James: a short, yet powerful book of the Bible in its practical encouragement for living faithfully.

 

 

The Tough Task of Tongue-Taming

September 16, 2018 (Sunday Morning)

Bible Verses: Isaiah 50:4-9a; James 3:1-12 | Daniel Glaze

James is clear: words matter. Each one of us can remember words spoken to us that cut right through our hearts. Perhaps they were uttered by a schoolyard bully, maybe from the lips of a former spouse or significant other, perhaps judgmental words from the mouth of a pastor. And even if we have been mature enough to forgive, the hurt is still there. How will we use our words…to hurt or to bless?

Pastor Daniel Glaze will preach a sermon series (5 Sundays) from James: a short, yet powerful book of the Bible in its practical encouragement for living faithfully.

 

 

TFC-Adults & TFC-Youth: Intergenerational Discussion with Daniel Glaze and Marnie Fisher-Ingram

September 12, 2018 (Wednesday Night) | Daniel Glaze & Marnie Fisher-Ingram

More and more studies are showing that all of a congregation benefits from intergenerational ministry. Let’s explore why and ways we can do this together as a church family. Adults and youth will meet together for this program.

 

Hymns That People Love to Hate

September 2, 2018 (Holland Lectures) | C. Michael Hawn

Holland Lectures 2018
“The Faith We Sing: Singing and Shaping Belief in the 21st Century Church”
with C. Michael Hawn

 

 

C. Michael Hawn is one of our nation’s leading experts in hymnology and world music. Now a Richmonder, he recently retired after 25 years from Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University, as University Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Church Music and director of the Sacred Music Program. Previously he taught at two Baptist seminaries for a total of 15 years. He leads festivals and publishes extensively in the area of hymnology, is the USA Editor for the Canterbury Dictionary of Hymnology, and writes a weekly hymn studies column entitled History of Hymns. A student of global Christian music, Hawn has conducted research and taught in over 40 countries. In addition, he has sung extensively as a countertenor and is a recovering accordion player.

Singing is in the DNA of most Christian traditions. While not unique to Christian communities, congregational singing is certainly part of the identity of Christian worship. Not all of the other great religious traditions integrate the people’s song into their communal gatherings. One might even go as far as to say that participation in congregational singing is one measure of the health and vitality of a church. This is not about musical proficiency or that better congregations sing more in tune; it is in terms of the range of congregational song that connects a local congregation with its heritage, its community, Christians ecumenically, and the needs of the world. You’re invited to join Hawn for four Sunday sessions in August and explore what it means to shape our belief through song.

Radical at Heart: Our Bold Baptist Heritage of Dissent

August 29, 2018 (Special Service: Vespers 2018) | Rev. Nathan L. Taylor

Nathan L. Taylor serves as executive director of the Virginia Baptist Historical Society and the Center for Baptist Heritage and Studies, situated on the campus of the University of Richmond. In previous roles, he served for over ten years in congregational ministry, and earlier as a seminary development officer and history teacher. He holds the M.Div. from Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond and is in the final stages of the D. Min. at Mercer University’s McAfee School of Theology. Nathan is married to Bryn Bagby Taylor, associate university chaplain, and together they are the parents of Will, a rising first grader.

 

Singing with the Faithful of Every Time and Place: Songs from the Global Church

August 26, 2018 (Holland Lectures) | C. Michael Hawn

Holland Lectures 2018
“The Faith We Sing: Singing and Shaping Belief in the 21st Century Church”
with C. Michael Hawn

 

 

C. Michael Hawn is one of our nation’s leading experts in hymnology and world music. Now a Richmonder, he recently retired after 25 years from Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University, as University Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Church Music and director of the Sacred Music Program. Previously he taught at two Baptist seminaries for a total of 15 years. He leads festivals and publishes extensively in the area of hymnology, is the USA Editor for the Canterbury Dictionary of Hymnology, and writes a weekly hymn studies column entitled History of Hymns. A student of global Christian music, Hawn has conducted research and taught in over 40 countries. In addition, he has sung extensively as a countertenor and is a recovering accordion player.

Singing is in the DNA of most Christian traditions. While not unique to Christian communities, congregational singing is certainly part of the identity of Christian worship. Not all of the other great religious traditions integrate the people’s song into their communal gatherings. One might even go as far as to say that participation in congregational singing is one measure of the health and vitality of a church. This is not about musical proficiency or that better congregations sing more in tune; it is in terms of the range of congregational song that connects a local congregation with its heritage, its community, Christians ecumenically, and the needs of the world. You’re invited to join Hawn for four Sunday sessions in August and explore what it means to shape our belief through song.

It’s Time to Let Go

August 19, 2018 (Sunday Morning) | Tracy Hartman

Dr. Hartman began her work as Acting Vice President of Academic Affairs and Dean at Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond (BTSR) on June 1, 2017. Hartman was a member of the first class of M. Div. students at BTSR and won the Miller Award for Academic Achievement upon her graduation in 1995. Her graduate work at Union included ground-breaking research into the relationship between parish setting and preaching style for women pastors.

Dr. Hartman teaches courses in preaching and practical theology, and previously served as director of the seminary’s Supervised Ministry and Doctor of Ministry programs. She is the author of Letting the Other Speak: Proclaiming the Stories of Biblical Women and co-author of New Proclamation Commentary. She also contributed to the Feasting on the Word and Feasting on the Gospels commentary series.

Dr. Hartman served as preacher and preaching instructor for the First Annual Pastor’s Conference  and as preacher and lecturer for the First Annual Lay Women’s Conference at Baptist Theological Seminary at Zimbabwe. She was recently elected president of the Association of Theological Field Educators at their 2017 Biennium Consultation in St. Paul, MN. ATFE, an affiliate of ATS, connects and bridges theory and practice, academy and church, and local and global contexts. She is active in Baptist life and has served as staff member and interim pastor to several Virginia churches. She enjoys preaching throughout the region.