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7th Sunday after Pentecost


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Sermon Excerpt: A Higher Loyalty Mat 13:31-33, 44-52, Dr. David Rogne

My parents were immigrants from Norway.  For some reason my mother did not apply for citizenship for many years.  When she did do so, I was a child of about eight.  She went to citizenship classes and told me that she would have to be able to answer certain questions put to her by a judge.  I was greatly distressed.  "If you couldn't answer the questions," I asked, "would they put you on a boat and send you back to Norway?"  She assured me that that wouldn't happen.  My fears were unnecessary.  She passed the examination and became a citizen.  I asked her what she had to say as she became an American citizen.  She said that she had to openly declare her loyalty to the United States of America, and if need be, to rise to its defense.  Some of your parents may have had to do the same.  Perhaps some of you were presented with that choice.

Most of us, however, don't get the chance to choose our loyalties--at least not our national ones--they are the result of the accident of birth.  As a consequence, our loyalties may be unexamined.

Throughout his ministry, Jesus challenged his hearers to examine their loyalties, and if they found that what they were loyal to was unsatisfying, he invited them to commit themselves to a higher loyalty.....Subscribers: click here for the full sermon manuscript.