May 30, 2020

Holy Spirit Unites Us To God and Others (Pentecost)

(see John Gishler Youtube channel for the video service)

It is often a challenge for people living in a modern “science-based” culture to believe in and understand how things work in the supernatural dimension. This is why many people have trouble with the virgin birth, the Resurrection and the gifts of the Holy Spirit. The readings for Pentecost describe that confusion – even for people who lived in a culture that believed in angels and the demonic. The point is we all need to personally experience the Holy Spirit before we can really understand and believe in the Holy Spirit. This is the great gift of Pentecost. An experience of the Holy Spirit was poured out on all people – as long prophesied. The readings help us understand:
·       Who the Holy Spirit is, and
·       The work of the Holy Spirit in developing our spiritual life by uniting us to God and other believers.

1. Who is the Holy Spirit?

May 23, 2020

"He Opened Their Minds" - Ascension

(see John Gishler Youtube channel for the video service)

We all have trouble understanding how things work in the supernatural dimension. We see this all through the Bible and in our own time:
·      Prophets are ridiculed, ignored, persecuted
·      Disciples do not understand what’s happening
·      Christian Church is divided and confused over doctrine

The Good News of Ascension is that Jesus / Holy Spirit will open our minds so we can understand the scriptures.

1. Jesus promised believers will be baptized by Holy Spirit

May 20, 2020

Home Church Prayer Resources

I am sharing the prayers Lucille and I use on Sundays in our participatory home communion service below. With churches closed now, many people are discovering that each household grouping can be a home church and be spiritually nourished by simple daily Bible readings, morning and evening prayers and remote participation in our Communion service. The services are streamed live on Youtube channel "John Gishler" soon after 10.00 am. on Sundays. You are invited to participate in the prayers, intercessions, confession and absolution and receive Holy Communion spiritually your heart. The weekly Readings and teachings are based on the Common Lectionary - this Sunday will be Ascension Sunday. If you have trouble with the resources email and I will send you the links / files.

Holy Communion Service

Common Lectionary Readings:

May 16, 2020

We Will Come To You (Easter 6a)

(Home Communion video will be available on John Gishler Youtube channel May 16

Jesus is preparing His followers for the traumatic experiences of His death, Resurrection and Ascension (John 14.15-21). The death and Resurrection of Jesus shows us what believers go through at death. It authenticates the whole Covenant of Jesus and His teachings as of divine authority. The Good News is that we are not abandoned – God is with us always in the form of the Holy Spirit with all the power and authority of Jesus.

1. “Because I live you also will live” (v. 19)

Our greatest fear is death. We push it away with distractions but in this time of pandemic we are all more conscious of our mortality. The Good News Christians bring to this time is that death is a false ending.

May 9, 2020

Spiritual Relationships (Easter 5)

(Watch on John Gishler Youtube channel

In the Gospel Reading (John 14.1-14) Jesus is comforting His disciples with The Good News that they will not be left alone. He will continue to be with them in the form of the Holy Spirit until they join Him in heaven. This will be a new type of spiritual relationship. He is explaining that the way into this new relationship is belief in Him. Specifically by dying with Him to their old sinful past life and being raised or born again into a new spiritual life in Him. His death and resurrection is a sign of the truth of His promise. His sending of the Holy Spirit will give life to them through this new spiritual relationship.

1. How does this work?

May 2, 2020

Developing Relationship With Jesus (Easter 4)

(Homily will be on YouTube on Sunday May 3 with a home Holy Communion service

In John 10.1-10 Jesus challenges the Pharisees to give up their legalistic dependence on the Law of Moses and depend on Him as Messiah and Saviour.  Jesus is describing Himself as the new shepherd of Israel and the (not a) “gate” each person must pass through into eternal life in His Kingdom. The test is that they know His voice and He knows them personally. The big question is how do you have a relationship with someone who died over 2,000 years ago? The Good News of Easter is that we can have an intimate, personal relationship with the Risen Jesus. The other Readings (Acts 2.42-47 and 1 Peter 2.19-25) teach us how to do this:

·      Jesus left a community of Apostles and believers in a growing home church.
·      This is where we all are today.
·      Sharing a spiritual communion service and teaching how to develop a home relationship with Jesus through:
o   Reading and sharing the “Apostles teaching”
o   “Fellowship” or developing a caring community
o   Relevant “prayer” and worship that connects us
o   Outreach or sharing to serve the needs of others

1. Developing Relationship through “Apostolic teaching”