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Showing posts from August, 2017

Risking Resistance

Exodus 1:8-2:10
August 27, 2017
First Presbyterian Church, Sterling IL
Christina Berry

Today’s reading from the Hebrew scriptures
begins with these foreboding words:

“Now a new king arose over Egypt, who did not know Joseph.”

We ended last week’s scripture reading on a “happily ever after” with Joseph and his brothers hugging and weeping in a joyful reunion. Joseph and his eleven brothers, the forebears of the twelve tribes of Israel, lived out their lives in Egypt, where Joseph had provided for them during the time of drought in Israel.

But Joseph died, he and all his brothers, and with the passage of time, the story of Joseph was forgotten. And when history is forgotten, the void makes a space for untruths.

Let’s listen for the truth of God’s word to us in Exodus 1:8-2:10:

Now a new king arose over Egypt, who did not know Joseph.
He said to his people, "Look, the Israelite people are more numerous and more powerful than we.
Come, let us deal shrewdly with them, or they will increase …

First Person Plural

I'm back! After a three month sabbatical, it's great to be back in the pulpit at First Presbyterian Church of Sterling, IL.

First Person Plural
Genesis 45:1-15, Matthew 15:21-28
August 20, 2017
First Presbyterian Church, Sterling IL
Christina Berry

Our first reading today comes from the book of Genesis, the almost final chapter of a story we looked at six years ago. If you’ve ever seen “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,” you’ll remember that this is the big moment, when Joseph and his brothers are reunited, and he urges them to escape the famine and join him in Egypt. The reason this is such a powerful story is the events that led up to it do not predict a happy ending. Joseph’s brothers, jealous of his position as the favorite, threw him in a pit, then sold him as a slave, and told their father Jacob that he was dead. Now, in Egypt, they have come to ask for food, not knowing it is Joseph they are asking. And Joseph has recognized them, but concealed his true identity. …