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Third & Adams Street, PO Box 9774, Moscow, Idaho USA | (208) 882-3715

Rewriting Temptation’s Script - February 22, 2015

Mark 1:9-15

The Gospel of Mark is shorter by almost half than either the Gospel of Matthew or of Luke. Nowhere is that more evident than in today's story of Jesus' temptation. Matthew takes 11 verses and Luke 13 to tell the story. Mark does it in 2. The others detail the temptation presented to Jesus by the devil. Mark simply says he was tempted by Satan. Despite his brevity, or maybe because of it, Mark's words are rich with meaning.
Like Matthew and Luke, Mark sets Jesus' temptation between his baptism by John and the start of his ministry. The order itself has a lot to tell us.
John's baptism was one of repentance, which always leaves Christians scratching their heads. How come Jesus, the sinless one, needed a baptism of repentance? Mark doesn't ask that question the way Matthew does, yet it hovers silently over the waters. John himself had anticipated the coming of Jesus. Indeed he understood his role to be as the one who would prepare the way for Jesus.

Read more: Rewriting Temptation’s Script - February 22, 2015

Faith At A Standstill - February 15, 2015

I Timothy 6:11-19
II Timothy 4:6-8

The NFC Championship Game between the Seattle Seahawks and the Green Bay Packers will go down in football history. How many of you watched it? I know that at least two people from this church were at the game. As you know, the Seahawks were outplayed for most of the game. Their star quarterback, Russell Wilson, threw four interceptions. It looked like they were going to lose. They didn't even score until the third quarter. Fans left the game early, their hopes for another Super bowl championship dashed.
Sometimes faith feels like the first fifty minutes of that game. Life outplays us. We get intercepted by crisis after crisis. The Seahawks/ Packers game was the day after memorial services were held for the shooting victims of January 10, which left our city grieving and stunned that such a thing could happen here, two of the shootings just feet from where we sit right now. Like Russell Wilson wondering how his passes ended up in the wrong hands, not once but four times, we wonder how things could go so wrong.

Read more: Faith At A Standstill - February 15, 2015

When Prayer Is Unanswered - February 8, 2015

Psalm 124
Luke 11:9-13

Thirteen years ago this summer, my husband and I were walking through town when he sat down on a bench, handed me the cell phone, and said, "Call 911. I'm having chest pains." Long story short, a quadruple bypass followed a couple of days later and here he is.
A few months after that incident, I told the story as a sermon illustration. I don't remember now where I went with it. What I remember is R's response. Several months after Doug's surgery, R's husband died unexpectedly of a massive heart attack. Her comment after that sermon was, "I did call 911, and he still died."
There were some obvious differences between the two men, such as a twenty-five year age difference. Her words still hit me in the gut. "I did call 911, and he still died."

Read more: When Prayer Is Unanswered - February 8, 2015

What Goes Up Must First Be Down - February 1, 2015

Psalm 130

By this time of year winter gets old. Gray, gloomy days have hung over us now for what seems like forever. Though we haven't had all that much snow this winter, and it has been unseasonably warm this week, the winter blahs have still set in. The charm of hot chocolate by a crackling fire has long since faded, the festivities of Christmas are a distant memory. The new toys are broken and the new clothes have been worn enough that they are no longer special. Spring seems far away.
Today we begin a new series just for this season. I'm calling it Chasing Away the Winter Blahs. Today we'll look at depression, which comes up more often in the Bible than you might think. Next week we'll consider unanswered prayer and finally we'll finish with faith at a standstill.
Our text for today is Psalm 130. It is one of fourteen psalms with the superscription, "A Song of Ascents." These were most likely sung by pilgrims on their way to worship at the temple in Jerusalem which was built on Mt. Zion. Mt. Zion was no Moscow Mountain. It was more like the Sixth St. hill here in town. Not what I'd call a mountain and one still has to ascend to get to the top.

Read more: What Goes Up Must First Be Down - February 1, 2015

The Gifts of Africa: The Holy Spirit Multiplies - January 25, 2015

Genesis 46:1-4
Acts 8:26-40

Today is the eleventh Africa Day here at First United Methodist Church. It began as the vision of our Mission Committee to lift up before the congregation our ministries in Africa. At that time we sponsored one girl at Jama Letu, the orphanage in the Democratic Republic of the Congo built by the Pacific Northwest Annual Conference. We also hoped to begin to pay our apportionment at Africa University which hadn't been paid in years. Sesitshaya Marimba Band has been a big part of helping us to turn a mission appeal into a celebration.
Our mission has grown over the last decade. Other churches in this area heard about it and have also invited Sesitshaya to come. In our own congregation, the Mission Committee has expanded its vision. When Jama Letu began it was only for girls. Then they built Jama Letu II for boys. We committed to sponsor a boy as well as a girl. When our girl aged out of the orphanage but still needed support to start life on her own the committee wanted to continue to help – and sponsor a boy and a girl. We now support three children.

Read more: The Gifts of Africa: The Holy Spirit Multiplies - January 25, 2015

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Sunday morning parking at the church is available in the high school parking lot on Third Street across from the church and in the city lots west of the church. These lots are available only on Sunday mornings. A small lot for handicapped parking is available just off of Adams Street on the north side of the church, with an accessible entrance directly into the sanctuary. A lift operates between the Fellowship Hall (3rd Street level) and the Sanctuary. William Sound System Receivers and Headsets are available to assist with hearing problems.

322 East Third Street
Moscow, ID 83843


Church Mission

The First United Methodist Church of Moscow, Idaho takes as our mission to be the body of Jesus Christ, ministering to a community which draws strength from its diversity. Our mission centers on the worship of God, expressed through varied forms of prayer, preaching, music, and ritual.  See more...

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