SERMON TITLE: “Acts of the Spirit: Fathers of the Spirit”
SERMON TEXT: Acts 6:1-7 and 7:54-60
PREACHER: Rev. Kim James
OCCASION: June 20, 2021 (Father’s Day) at First UMC
One of the funniest TV commercials I’ve seen recently features a teenage boy sitting at a table eating Pringles hot and spicy chips. Speaking across the table, the teenage boy tells his girlfriend’s father, “Mr. Clark, your daughter is a very good kisser.” The camera then pans to the girlfriend’s father, who is now glaring at the boyfriend. Then the camera goes back to the teenage boy, who calmly takes another bite of his spicy chips. As you’re feeling the tension across the table, the narrator says, “When you crave the uncomfortable, try new spicy Pringles Scorchin.”
Yeah, that certainly would be uncomfortable. And, whether or not you like spicy chips, you can appreciate this advertisement that plays off the understood role of father as the guardian and guide of daughters and sons. Fathers play a lot of necessary roles in our lives, and—on this Father’s Day—we thank them for all that they do and have done for us.
We’re going to focus on fathers today as we continue our “Acts of the Spirit” sermon series. For five weeks already, we’ve been immersing ourselves in the New Testament book of Acts and observing the energetic movement and accomplishments of the Holy Spirit. Just as Jesus promised his disciples in Acts, chapter one, the Holy Spirit came and empowered them for ministry, so that the disciples were able to preach and heal and so that the fledgling Christian church grew rapidly. While that growth most certainly included women and children, we find that the Holy Spirit’s action in chapters six and seven is focused especially on the men--the brothers and fathers, the patriarchs, the twelve male disciples, and the new male leaders. So, let’s take a look at these two chapters to see what we can learn from these fathers of the Spirit.