Todd A. Peperkorn, STM
Messiah Lutheran Church
Wednesday of Invocabit
Genesis 18:16-33; Matthew 26:36-46
For an audio MP3 of this sermon, CLICK HERE
TITLE: “Side by Side”
In the name of the Father and of the † Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. Our text for tonight is the Passion of our Lord in the Garden of Gethsemane, as well as Abraham interceding for Sodom.
It takes a pretty bold person to bargain with God, but that’s what Abraham does. God had seen the wickedness of Sodom. He knew their evil deeds. Their sins were many: greed, avarice, idolatry, adultery, and sodomy. You know a city is evil when they have a sin named after them. So in order to protect Abraham and the nation that was in his loins, God purposed to destroy the city of Sodom with fire and brimstone, so that nothing would be left, not one stone upon another.
But Abraham would not let go. What if there are fifty righteous in the city? What if there are forty-five, forty, twenty, or even ten? For the sake of ten I will not destroy it, said the Lord. Abraham, who knew he was but dust, was willing to risk all, even the wrath of God, for the sake of Lot and any others in the city who would repent and believe the Gospel. So He was bold to pray and intercede for those whom he may not have even known.
Abraham is a picture of our Lord this night. Just as Abraham interceded for Lot and any of the righteous in that wicked city, so too our Lord intercedes for us. He stands between you and God the Father, and is willing to risk all, even the cruel death on the cross, so that we might be saved. He knew the cost of His prayers for us. Even as He prayed let this cup pass from me, so too He prayed if this cannot pass unless I drink it, your will be done.
This is your God, dearly baptized. He prays for you with tears of blood, and is willing to stand before God and faithfully pray for you and for me. Abraham wasn’t bold; he knew that God is merciful, and so he counted everything as loss for the sake of the mercy of God.
Yes, this is your God, the God of Abraham, the God who stands with you in your darkest hours, who prays by your side when you are alone or in the midst of the congregation. This is your God who prays for you when you cannot pray for yourself. He knows your desires before you ask them. He knows what you need better than you know yourself. So we are bold to pray before our heavenly Father, because our heavenly Brother is at our side, interceding for us.
In the name of Jesus. Amen.