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Wedding sermon - John 15:9-12 - Marriage a New Creation & Obedience

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May the words of my mouth and the mediations of all our hearts be acceptable in your Sight, our Lord and saviour, Amen

In marriage we become part of something very unique

            In marriage all those present are:  a witness …to a piece of creation

                        It is the new creation from the uniting of a Husband and Wife and the Life              and Love that will grow out of that bonding

                                    and we are witnesses today,

                                                to that life creating moment

In marriage, no longer are there two individuals solely, although two individuals remain

            But there enters into life something unique and … miraculous

The Gospel passage … that Cory and Nicole chose for this special occasion comes from St. John’s Gospel account of the life Of Jesus

in this passage from St. John, We hear a challenging message and it is focused on a new way to understand Love

the word Love itself was a little used word of the time

            You see the first Christians sought to FIND language to express their new               experience of God’s grace

                        a “fresh minting” of a previously little-used word

and marriage is a lot like that, “a fresh minting”

            two people previously solely individuals are minted in a new unique way

                        The word takes on a uniquely new and Christian sense to it

a sense of family belongingness which transcends the previous sense of the word

And it is this new sense of love that is SO appropriate for a wedding service

                                                            It is the type of love that binds

On the surface, the first reading of the passage, seems to be a simple message of Love

            A heart-warming message whereby Jesus restates the “new commandment” to love            one another and abide in that love

But when you look at the wording a little deeper there is one key troubling word that keeps coming up

            Command or commandment 

                        - it comes up clearly three times – in this very short passage

                                    It is a hard word to soft-pedal around - to reduce the impact

            It is not a negotiable word

                        There is no flexibility in the word

                                    It’s not “you might want to do this”

                                                Or “maybe you could think of that”

                                                            The word is a clear directive

To put the passage in context - Jesus time is running out

            It is set in the upper room on the last night before the cross

                        They have shared in the Passover meal                      

He has washed their feet - taught them a new way to live in servitude towards each other

and this is part of a series of instructions and teachings - to his closest friends - on his last night

Jesus in passing on this new way of life tells it in a plain and clear way

            He commands them to Love one another and abide in that love

                        Then just as now we don’t like any words that tell us ‘what to do’

The trend is not lessening over time - but increasing

            Our post modern culture motto could be

                        “I accept you have a opinion, but it is no more valid then my own”

                        or - “what’s true for you is your truth - and what’s true for me, is my truth”

            no longer are our truths a product of community

                        no longer do we need to be obedient to communional expectations

But Jesus, in our Gospel reading from John today, directly challenges that

            Jesus commends us to Love and to abide in that so that our joy might be complete

                       

In this passage we have a more full understanding of Love

the challenges that ‘love in obedience’ calls for are so appropriate for a marriage service

                        In the end – if you want the fullest picture of God’s love

                                    You will need to be obedient - and strive to Love as He lived and loved us

Marriage is a life and love that gets built on,

            moments building on top of the other,

                        from one to the next

                                    the good times, and the challenges - from which we learn from

the great times which our memories hold to the greatest

                                               

                                               

            “the creation” that is the bond between you will grows stronger

                        it is the new entity uniquely created by you and between you,

                                    and it is this new love that binds it all together

It is my prayer: Cory and Nicole, that you will be blessed with such a creation

That you will live and abide in a love between you

and that you will experience the fullest of that love so that your joy will be complete

Amen 

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