From time to time I put sermons I give up here. Not because I think they are particularly good, even less that they are model sermons. I can't even guarantee that I agree with everything I said then - I am (of course) learning all the time. But someone may be interested.

You can use the filters below to restrict which sermons you see. Sermons will be sorted newest first, which means that they appear in reverse order from that in which they were delivered.

Isaiah 10:5-25 The Axe and the Woodcutter

Sun, 15/11/2015 - 10:30 -- James Oakley

I want us to talk about two things this morning: Terror and trust. What do you fear? And what do you rely on in life?

We’re baptising three children this morning. I don’t need to tell you that they will grow up in a world that can be a frightening place. To be honest, adults can find it frightening, too.

And against that backdrop, the Bible passage we just heard asks us those two questions: What do we find frightening? And in a world with much to frighten us, what will we lean on for support?

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Ephesians 6:10-20 Fight the Good Fight

Sun, 08/11/2015 - 09:45 -- James Oakley

(A sermon for Remembrance Sunday)

I have a momentous and important announcement to make.

We are at war!

No, I’m not speaking about Syria. Or Iraq. Or Afghanistan.

Those are wars we can see. I’m talking about another war. This one, you can’t see. But it’s just as real, and even more important.

Because as well as the world you can see, there’s a whole world you can’t. Angels are real. The devil is real, and so are bad angels that we call demons.

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Isaiah 7 Faith Under Attack

Sun, 18/10/2015 - 10:30 -- James Oakley

So, who’s your daddy? We can easily tell with Araya? She’s a spitting image of Stuart. We can all see who her daddy is.

Although whether she’ll live up to the family name is something we’re all going to have to wait to see.

It’s one thing to look like your parents. But the real thing we care about is whether someone behaves like their parents, or at least lives in a way that reflects well on the family name.

That’s the question that’s running through Isaiah chapter 7. Who’s your daddy? This time, the question is not being asked of Araya, but of king Ahaz.

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Isaiah 6 Merciful and Mighty

Sun, 11/10/2015 - 10:30 -- James Oakley

There are two kinds of religion in the world.

Some think of God as distant. He’s all-powerful, he’s far above us mere mortals. And so he’s impersonal, and he cannot be truly known. This is the classic Muslim view of God, although many modern Muslims are rewriting that part of their religion.

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Isaiah 5 Bad Vintage

Sun, 27/09/2015 - 10:30 -- James Oakley

Many years ago, a friend of ours won an award at work. His prize was a meal for two, up to £100. “Can I give this prize to a friend?” he asked. He could. “Does it matter if that friend would never be an employee or customer of the company?” That was fine, too. So Liz and I got to enjoy a lovely meal out, paid for by his company. And in those days, £100 got you a pretty decent meal as well. Extraordinarily kind. And one of many ways that friends have been kind over the years.

What’s the kindest thing that anyone has ever done for you? How do you respond to such kindness?

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Isaiah 2 To End All Wars

Sun, 20/09/2015 - 10:30 -- James Oakley

I’m sure I’m not alone in saying that I hate war. I hate the nations fighting, the damage to property, the loss of life, the grief, the trauma, the memories soldiers cannot shake. I would love to live in a world where there is no war.

Who’s with me? It’s so obvious, you don’t even need to put up your hand. We all are.

After the Second World War, the United Nations we know today was formed with just 51 member states. Today, there are 193, but the aim is the same: To try and get nations to work together, talk together, rather than fight each other.

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Isaiah 1 Cry Freedom

Sun, 13/09/2015 - 10:30 -- James Oakley

“If that’s what Christianity is about, I’m not interested”. That’s what many people say about the church. Let’s be honest. Look at the way we behave, the way we relate to one another. We’re often not the best ambassadors for Jesus Christ.

It’s not a new problem.

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Philemon: Cry Freedom

Sun, 09/08/2015 - 10:30 -- James Oakley

One of my heroes is the Member of Parliament for Hull, in the year 1780, William Wilberforce. He went on to be elected Member of Parliament for Yorkshire in 1784, always an independent MP. The following year, he became a Christian, and wondered whether he should leave politics. He carried on, but his new found faith gave him a sharp social conscience. He sought to use his position in Parliament to campaign for issues he felt strongly about, and one of those was the trade in slaves from Africa to work in the West Indies.

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Titus 3:9-15 Gospel Unity

Sun, 26/07/2015 - 10:30 -- James Oakley

Divisions and arguments are always ugly. They don’t belong in families or in business, but they are especially unseemly in Christian churches. We’re supposed to be the first glimpse of a new humanity, united under Jesus’ gracious rule. We’re supposed to be doing good to others, not squabbling amongst ourselves.

And yet it’s all too common. Churches that are focussed in on themselves, arguing away, tragically divided, doing little good to anyone else.

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Titus 3:3-8 Gospel Rescue

Sun, 19/07/2015 - 10:30 -- James Oakley

Here are some of the headlines from the past week: UK unemployment total up by 15,000. A German court convicts a 94-year old former guard at the Nazi death camp at Auschwitz of being an accessory to the murder of at least 300,000 Jews. Fears of new arms race after Iran nuclear deal. Many NHS hospital patients complain of lack of dignity.

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