Sunday, June 21, 2015


Buffalo Creek, Magoffin County, Kentucky where my Father grew up.

Sunday, June 21, 2015, Stoney Creek Sermonette: Number 51
My father Lester J. Cooper with my mom

(This is a series of sermonettes on The Gospel According To Mark. )

(Ed Cooper is an ordained Elder and minister in the Christian Church/Churches of Christ which are a part of the Restoration Movement started in Appalachia in the early 1800’s.  Ed started preaching as a teenager in the village churches around Mashoko Mission, Zimbabwe, Africa when he was there with his parents in the early 1960’s.)

SCRIPTURE for Today: Mark 11:27-33 King James Version (KJV)
27 And they come again to Jerusalem: and as he was walking in the temple, there come to him the chief priests, and the scribes, and the elders,
28 And say unto him, By what authority doest thou these things? and who gave thee this authority to do these things?
29 And Jesus answered and said unto them, I will also ask of you one question, and answer me, and I will tell you by what authority I do these things.
30 The baptism of John, was it from heaven, or of men? answer me.
31 And they reasoned with themselves, saying, If we shall say, From heaven; he will say, Why then did ye not believe him?
32 But if we shall say, Of men; they feared the people: for all men counted John, that he was a prophet indeed.
33 And they answered and said unto Jesus, We cannot tell. And Jesus answering saith unto them, Neither do I tell you by what authority I do these things.

SERMON for Today:

It has been a few weeks since we have been together here on this blog for our Sunday time together.  We have been gathering here for over a year now and have brothers and sisters around the world joining us each week.  I do not consider the reason to be because I am such a great writer, but rather that Jesus is such a magnificent friend.

The Scripture lesson is about Jesus being questioned about where his authority came from.  This being the day we celebrate Father’s Day it is appropriate to look at this question.  Without getting into an argument about the nature of the Trinity, we can say Jesus got his authority from his Father, God Almighty.  The folks who asked would not answer the question he asked them so Jesus did not answer their question.

The question they asked him related to the cleansing of the temple and also to his healing and teaching in the temple. To avoid the dilemma posed by the question Jesus asked them, Jesus’ opponents said that they did not know, because they feared the consequences of speaking against John the Baptist, whose divinely authorized ministry was also carried out apart from the official Jewish authority. Their confession of ignorance, however, demonstrated that they had no basis on which to assess Jesus’ ministry.

Many of us today have no way to assess Jesus’ ministry.  We either ignore him or listen to explanations of him created down through the years by theologians and church leaders with agendas and with the hunger for power and control.  To get a true picture of Jesus one must study his life with an open mind and heart.  Also, one must be willing to learn from Hebrew Scriptures a fuller picture of Jesus’ Father if they are to understand the Gospels and the story of the Creator’s son on earth among us.  I pray that our journey to learn of Him and His Father never stops.

PRAYER for Today: Matthew 6:9-13 King James Version (KJV)
9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
10 Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.

© Ed Cooper, June 21, 2015, Stoney Creek, Tennessee
  All rights reserved

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