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Daniel: A Story of Peer Pressure

[Daniel 1:8-16 and Daniel 6:6-11, 16
Sermon Text: 08.26.2018

          In the 1950’s there was a psychologist by the name of Solomon Asch who conducted a series of tests to see just how much people would give in to peer pressure. The test was simple enough. The test subjects were told that they would be given a standard eye test. They were shown a piece of paper with a line on it, and a second paper with three lines of different lengths. All the test subject had to do was raise their hand to identify which line was the same length as the line on the first paper. But only one person in the room was actually a test subject. Everyone else was part of the test – instructed to raise their hand for the wrong answer. Without a group around them, the error ratio was less than 1% – everybody got it right. But, in a group setting, the first they did it, over 75% gave the wrong answer to at least one of the questions – if everyone around them gave the same answer. Peer pressure is real.

          Today is week four of our five part sermon series – Old Testament Stories of Love. So far we have spend some time with Moses, Esther and last week we heard the whole story of Samson. But today we will examine two stories about the same man. Both stories of Daniel are all about handling and responding to peer pressure. Let’s take a look.


Moses: A Story of Trust and Awe

Sermon Text – 08.05.2018

[Exodus 3:1-6 and Exodus 14: …]

A wise man once said there are two season in Michigan – winter and construction – and of course, there’s nothing worse on a long car-ride than a traffic jam. We all know what’s it’s like – you see that train of brakelights going off into the distance and mentally add four hours to your arrival time. And of course, most of the time it’s a car crash or an animal or something like that, and even if nobody is hurt and the lanes aren’t actually blocked – traffic still slows down to a standstill because every single driver insists on plastering their face up against the window to stare and see what happened as they drive by. There is no need for traffic to be so back up except that we cannot tear our eyes away. WE have to slow down and take a look. I imagine that’s sort of what Moses must have felt like when he saw the burning bush. Scripture tells us, [read v.3]. I mean, common! It’s a bush, that’s on fire, covered in flames, and yet it is not burning up! Let’s slow down and take a quick peek. SO that’s what we’re going to do this morning. We’re going to slow down and take a quick peek at this story – see if we can learn something in the process. Today is the first sermon in a new series called “Old Testament Stories of Love” and for the month of August we’re going to wander the pages of the old Testament and see what we can learn about this God that we worship.


Samson: A Story of Mistakes

Sermon Text – 08.19.2018

[Judges 13:24-25; 14:5-14 and Matthew 5:38-44]

My first two years of college, I lived in the dormitories, and during that time I got into something called a prank war with some friends of mine who were from the other half of the dorm. It all started one day, when I was working at the coffee shop on campus, and my friends delivered to me a massive plate of jello. Big huge thing of green jello, and inside that jello were my shoes. They put my flip flops in jello. So, to get back at them I did something called cupping. Cupping, if you haven’t heard of this, is where you take dozens of plastic cups and you staple them together to spell out a word or make a picture. You place the stapled cups somewhere inconvenient and then you fill all the cups with water. It’s annoying, because it’s so hard to clean up. Because there are so many cups, you can’t pick them all up at once, but if you try to pull them apart, they staples make it tear and water goes everywhere. So I put two giant J’s made of stapled together cups in the middle of their dorm room – filled to the brim with water.



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