Sermon - 12/18/16: Protecting the Lowliness of God

Winter Morning in Templeton   Photo Credit: Iain Beveridge

Winter Morning in Templeton

Photo Credit: Iain Beveridge

Isaiah 7:10-16 and Matthew 1:18-25

Who among us will celebrate Christmas correctly? Whoever finally lays down all power, all honor, all reputation, all vanity, all arrogance, all individualism beside the manger; whoever remains lowly and lets God alone be high; whoever looks at the child in the manger and sees the glory of God precisely in his lowliness.

— Dietrich Bonhoeffer from God Is in the Manger

Sermon Notes

In preparing for this sermon about God upending the rules of biblical honor/shame societies and hinting that God also intends to upend guilt/innocence societies such as our own, I drew on ideas from sociological and anthropological reading from years past.  I scanned through numerous online articles including Wikipedia's entry on honor/shame societies.  Beyond Revenge by Micahel McCullough (public library and reference) explores too the biological impacts of these social organizing principles.  Lots of reading and thinking!