“Is There Anything in America to Be Thankful for Anymore?” (Psalm 73; Malachi 3:13-18; Deuteronomy 8:1-10)

Day of National Thanksgiving
Thursday, November 24, 2022

“Is There Anything in America to Be Thankful for Anymore?” (Psalm 73; Malachi 3:13-18; Deuteronomy 8:1-10)

The fourth Thursday in November is set aside to be the Day of National Thanksgiving. That’s the reason why we have the day off from work. Because this is when all Americans are supposed to go to their churches and give thanks to God for his blessings on our nation.

Ha! Yeah, right. How many people actually do that? Not many. Give thanks to God on Thanksgiving Day? Are you kidding? That would interfere with our Thanksgiving! No, we need the time to baste the turkey. We need the time to get the house spiffed up for our guests. We need to watch the football pregame shows. Or, depending on which gender you identify with, we need to binge-watch some Hallmark Christmas movies. Anything but going to church and giving thanks to God!

“Thanksgiving” seems to be an odd idea in our culture these days. Because it implies that we are to give thanks to God. And God seems to have vanished from our national consciousness. For most Americans, is there a vital awareness of God’s existence and involvement in our lives? I think not.

Oh, well, but you are here for this Thanksgiving service. And that’s good. It’s good, right, and proper that we gather and give thanks to God for his blessings on our country.

But wait! Have you looked at our country lately? What a mess it has become! We have to ask the question: “Is There Anything in America to Be Thankful for Anymore?”


Published in: on November 23, 2022 at 10:25 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“Day of Judgment, Day of Redemption, Days of Distress” (Malachi 4:1-6; Luke 21:5-36)

Twenty-third Sunday after Pentecost
November 13, 2022

“Day of Judgment, Day of Redemption, Days of Distress” (Malachi 4:1-6; Luke 21:5-36)

“Day of Judgment, Day of Redemption, Days of Distress”: We hear about all of these days in our readings today. All these days are guaranteed. God’s word makes it so. All these days will happen. In fact, some of them are happening already. But there is a day ahead that is not yet here. It’s still to come. And we need to be ready for it. Let’s find out.


Published in: on November 12, 2022 at 12:17 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“The Messenger of the Covenant” (Malachi 3:1-7b)

Midweek Advent Evening Prayer
Wednesday, December 9, 2015

“The Messenger of the Covenant” (Malachi 3:1-7b)

Which messenger is which? There are two messengers mentioned in our text for today from Malachi 3–in fact, three messengers, if you include Malachi himself. So which messenger is which? We’ll try to explain and untangle all this now, and we’ll direct our attention especially to the most important of these messengers, namely, “The Messenger of the Covenant.”


Published in: on December 9, 2015 at 10:07 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“The Day Is Coming” (Malachi 4:1-6; 2 Thessalonians 3:6-13; Luke 21:5-28)

Twenty-sixth Sunday after Pentecost
November 17, 2013

“The Day Is Coming” (Malachi 4:1-6; 2 Thessalonians 3:6-13; Luke 21:5-28)

“The Day Is Coming.” “The Day Is Surely Drawing Near.” What day am I talking about? Thanksgiving? No, nobody cares much about Thanksgiving anymore, except for eating turkey and watching football and getting a head start on . . . Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving. Black Friday, the big shopping day of the season–now that’s a day that lots of people get excited about! But no, that’s not the day I’m talking about. Oh, OK then, Christmas, that must be it. Only 37 shopping days left till Christmas! The Christmas songs are already playing on the radio and in the stores. But no, that’s not it, either. That’s not the big day to which I refer.

“The Day Is Coming.” This is the day I’m talking about: The Day of the Lord. The Last Day. The Day of Christ’s Return. The Second Coming. Judgment Day. That is The Big Day that is still to come. And it is coming. It could come at any time. It could come very soon. You may even miss out on all those Black Friday shopping deals. Oh, well.

Yes, the Day of the Lord, the Second Coming of Christ, this is the focus of our lessons today, as we come near the end of the church year and our attention is drawn to the end of human history as we know it. This is a lot bigger deal than anticipating the release of the latest version of Xbox or iPhone or iPad or iPod or whatever the latest electronic gizmo is. I don’t keep up with these things. There is an end goal in sight for this world, and yet most of the people in this world are walking around not paying any heed to what is to come. They’re walking around like the Walking Dead that they are.

But not so with you, my brothers and sisters! Not so with you. You are Christians, baptized believers, and our Lord would have you cognizant and conscious, alert and awake and aware, of what is in store for this old world as we get closer to the Last Day. That’s what our Scripture readings today are all about. That’s what this message now will be about, namely, what difference it makes to us that “The Day Is Coming.”


Published in: on November 16, 2013 at 9:05 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“For Behold, the Day Is Coming” (Malachi 4:1-6; Luke 21:5-36)

Twenty-fifth Sunday after Pentecost
November 14, 2010

“For Behold, the Day Is Coming” (Malachi 4:1-6; Luke 21:5-36)

“For Behold, the Day Is Coming,” says our Old Testament Reading this morning. And in the Holy Gospel, Jesus goes on to tell us more about that day–and the days leading up to it. What day are we talking about? When? What is going to happen when that day arrives? And what about those days leading up to it? What will they be like? And what does all this mean for us in the here and now? That’s where our lessons this morning are taking us. You see, it’s November. We’re in the last couple Sundays of the church year. And so, naturally enough, the theme of the lessons at this time of year turns to the last days, the end times, and to the Last Day.


Published in: on November 13, 2010 at 10:57 pm  Leave a Comment  
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