Much of the New Testament narrative of Jesus’ ministry takes place “by the water” – specifically by the Sea of Galilee. In the gospel of Mark especially, some of the most significant and astonishing events in Jesus’ ministry are on or by the Sea of Galilee.
During Lent we confront darkness, exile, abandonment, chaos and evil. In the biblical tradition, "the sea" is where evil does its worst. We all have "seas" within us that rage against our true humanity. Jesus came to tame the sea and to unleash a better way to exist in the world. Join us as we wield hope to confront the seas within us and those that engulf our world.
In this "occasional series" called TXT (Text), voices from Pangea (and guest speakers) reflect on a passage from the Scriptures and let it take the lead. Sometimes, the text will come from the Lectionary, while at other times it will be at the speaker's discretion. On special Sundays and in between teaching series, these talks will bring passion to bear on sacred Scripture and will allow the ancient text to inform the scripts of our modern lives.
Why in the world is the world the way the world is? That is the question we all ask when we see a child abused, a country terrorized by air strikes, a loved one overtaken by disease, or an outsider victimized by bigotry. Evil is real. To deny this is to deny reality.
Yet, the Christian tradition claims to have a God that is all loving and all powerful. Where is this God to clean up the mess? Maybe this God is complicit with suffering or even directly causes it. Or perhaps God actually looks like Jesus. This series wrestles with God's love, human free will, and the problem evil.
When Paul reflects on the wonder of Jesus' life, death, resurrection, and ascension, he says that we can experience "the riches of the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory" (Col. 1.27). Many of us are tempted to compartmentalize Jesus into part of our lives, but for the earliest Christians, Jesus disrupted everything--for the better. In Jesus, God was moving toward us. God was joining with us. God was eventually going to move in us--into our very souls.
In this series we will connect the Christmas story with the ways in which Christ is still with us. The Jesus who slept in a crib of hay is the same Jesus who dwells with us through the presence of the Spirit. This is a great mystery. This is the very dynamic that the hope of the cosmos hinges on. In fact, it is this hope that beckons us to bring Christ to the world.
In a world where social media has transformed the way we communicate with each other, it is hard to know what it means to be in authentic relationships. In fact, we might even say that the very word "friendship" is being transformed by our interactions online. Is a relationship possible with someone you've never meant? Was this sort of disembodied community the sort of thing Jesus had in mind? And how does our new social reality affect the way we form our identity? During this series, we are going to take an honest look at all things pertaining to friendships and personal identity. We will specifically explore how Jesus informs what it means to be human.
In John 18.36 Jesus says: “My kingdom doesn’t originate from this world. If it did, my guards would fight so that I wouldn’t have been arrested by the Jewish leaders. My kingdom isn’t from here.” Jesus' kingdom is fundamentally different from those of nations. And yet, every political party in this country constantly appeals to Jesus as their political inspiration. How odd. We've come far from the gospel of Jesus that saw the political kingdoms of our current age as suspect, and even as influenced by the satan. During this season of debates, leading up to a new person living in the White House, Christians can avoid catching election infection. To do this, Jesus people must remember that we have a different commander in chief, a different set of values, and a better way to be human than the offerings of the political right or left. This series examines politics from a radical Christian perspective and invites followers of Christ to live out a countercultural campaign of love--one that subverts politics as usual.
A core value at Pangea is Mystery: Ancient faith fosters wonder and refuses to put God in a box. The church in the twenty-first century is part of a narrative that goes back 2,000 years. The church throughout the generations, with its ancient practices and postures, is our story. And the more we lean into that beautiful and messy tradition, the more we know ourselves as followers of the way of Jesus. What we will notice is that until the last few hundred years, the church universally practiced elements of worship that involved all five senses—because, after all—we are humans worshiping God: not mere minds or voices. In this series, we will look at various ways Christians have worshiped God and grown as disciples of Jesus. We will also answer the "why" questions that emerge at our church, like: Why do we do the 'sign of the cross?' What is the Eucharist all about, really? What is the purpose of prayer? And so on. Ultimately, we will seek to follow Jesus and embody his way in our lives, worship, and practices.
What would our world be like if every church saw peacemaking as a central vocation? Considering that Christianity makes up a large percentage of the global population, we can say that the world would be remarkably different. But rather than dream about such a lofty and worthy goal, we at Pangea want to lean into our core value of Peacemaking, here and now. This series walks through four peacemaking practices and hopes to inspire folks in the way of love.
Unseen is s a series all about the invisible heavenly realm. We will look at topics like heaven, hell, angels, demons, and the Holy Spirit.
This series is a journey through 5 different emotions we all experience. The fact that we know joy, anger, sadness, disgust, and fear are reminders that we are in fact human. With a little inspiration from Disney's "Inside Out," we will confront each emotion (naming them as normative, good, and challenging) and process them through the grid we receive in the Scriptures.
DATES: February 21, 2016 -- April 20, 2016
In this series, we will explore three concepts that have real-world ramifications. These "w" words are not directly related, but the grid through which they have been interpreted is basically the same. We all 'pick and choose' the perspectives that fit our own biases. The goal of this series is to expose those biases and to dig deep into the New Testament. What did the early Christians believe about drinking wine? What about women? Is Christianity inherently pro-war? For three weeks we will seek to dismantle sacred myths that are rooted in cultural preference more than the ancient Scriptures.
The Kingdom of God is a Party. And all of us are invited. That simple reality has so many implications. It means that the Kingdom of God is not an exclusive club where only those with the right upbringing, the right religious pedigree, the right past, the right ethnicity, or the right national heritage are offered entrance. It means that not only are we invited to attend, but we are invited to invite. The host has set us free to tell anyone we are willing to tell. No limit. No restrictions. A party where, no matter how many show up, there’s always room for more. So come to the party! Black tie optional. RSVP requested.
Subverting the Christmas Empire looks at key themes from the gospel accounts of Jesus' birth. King Jesus, meek and mild, overthrows an empire to inaugurate a better Kingdom! This series will look at Augustus, Mary, Jesus and more as we compare the subversive nature of the first Christmas to what Christmas has become in American culture.
"We..." is a series all about our vision and core values. These messages seek to paint a clear picture about who Pangea is and who we strive to be. [Dates: Oct. 12, 15 - Nov. 22, 15]
What if your life were like a story, the kind of story that captivated others? Not for the sake of false pretense, but an authentic life rooted in a cause that is bigger than yourself. In this series, we will explore the key elements that make a story great. We will then look to the ancient Scriptures, specifically the life of Jesus, for some anchoring points that connect us to the grand narrative of the universe. [Dates: 9.13.15 - 10.04.15]
The following few series were all part of our "pre-launch" phase of the church planting journey. We will likely return to some of these themes in the future, as they are relevant to the ongoing life of Pangea. These sermons served a specific purpose for a season of leadership development and differ some from the sort of talks that folks should expect after our official launch. (Shoot, some of the older talks happened in houses... you can even hear babies in the background!).
For many of us, faith creates tension. We aren't talking about relational tension (although that can be true as well) but the tensions that arise as we try to hold together faith and doubt. Experiencing these two simultaneous realities can become one of the heaviest burdens for followers of Jesus. However, ambiguity also creates spaces in our lives where authentic struggles, doubts, and questions help us move to new territory in our spiritual journeys. Sometimes having all the answers is less important than asking questions in the context of Christian community. This series will seek to explore several such tensions. Dates: Feb. 22 — Apr. 5 (The Season of Lent)
Revelation is perhaps the most read and misunderstood book in human history. It's been the justification for numerous wars, predictions, and various forms of fanaticism. Most people have heard it explained as if it were a book of secret codes or a crystal ball predicting the end of the world. But what if it is something completely different than what we've heard? What if this book is less about doom and gloom and more about gardens that bloom? What if the connections to the first century world of the author, John, to our world are more relevant today than we might think? Not as a predictor of future events, but as a counter-imperial script for living subversively in a world predicated on greed, violence, and corruption? Come and explore this incredible and misunderstood book with us as we unpack its wisdom that applies here, now, today! We were in and out of this series during our "pre-launch" core team phase, but set it aside as we clarified our vision for launching Pangea publicly. At a future date, we will return to Revelation in some sort of mini-series to reexamine its major themes and what it means to be a disciple in the midst of an empire.
NOTE: Since I've received several requests for the raw audio of the last talks in this series (we halted our podcast posts for a season), I'm going to make them available here. Revelation: talk 12, talk 13, talk 14 (Ryan Morey), talk 15.
This Advent series focused on: Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love.
In this series, we've looked at our core values. These are the core threads that make up what it looks like to experience a full human existence. Not only so, but they are the values that help us to be "woven together into a tapestry of love." That phrase comes from our theme passage:
I want you woven into a tapestry of love, in touch with everything there is to know of God. Then you will have minds confident and at rest, focused on Christ, God’s great mystery. All the richest treasures of wisdom and knowledge are embedded in that mystery and nowhere else. And we’ve been shown the mystery! I’m telling you this because I don’t want anyone leading you off on some wild-goose chase, after other so-called mysteries... Colossians 2.2-4 (The Message)