Eastbrook at Home – December 5, 2021

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Join us for worship with Eastbrook Church through Eastbrook at Home at 8, 9:30, and 11 AM. Here is a prayer for the second Sunday of Advent from The Book of Common Prayer:

Blessed Lord, who caused all Holy Scriptures to be written for our learning: Grant us so to hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, that by patience and the comfort of your holy Word we may embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of everlasting life, which you have given us in our Savior Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

This weekend we continue the journey of Advent and our series, “‘Tis the Reason,” as I preach from Matthew 17:1-13. At the Transfiguration we receive a glimpse of the glory of Jesus that is seen nowhere else in the Gospels before the resurrection. This brings into focus the glory that comes through Jesus to a world turned inside-out with humiliation.

You can access our Advent devotional that accompanies the series as a PDF, online, or through the Eastbrook app.

This series continues our extended journey through the Gospel of Matthew, which includes our previous series “Family Tree,” “Power in Preparation,” “Becoming Real,” “The Messiah’s Mission,” “Stories of the Kingdom: parables of Jesus,” and “Who Do You Say I Am?

We also continue in-person services at 8:00, 9:30, and 11:00 AM this weekend at the Eastbrook Campus, and you no longer need to RSVP ahead of time.

If you are new to Eastbrook, we want to welcome you to worship and would ask you to text EBCnew to 94000 as a first step into community here at Eastbrook.

Each Sunday at 8, 9:30, and 11 AM, you can participate with our weekly worship service at home with your small group, family, or friends. This service will then be available during the week until the next Sunday’s service starts. You can also access the service directly via Vimeo, the Eastbrook app, or Facebook.

If you are not signed up for our church emailing list, please sign up here. Also, please remember that during this time financial support for the church is critical as we continue minister within our congregation and reach out to our neighborhood, city, and the world at this challenging time. Please give online or send in your tithes and offerings to support the ministry of Eastbrook Church.

Eastbrook at Home – November 28, 2021

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Join us for worship with Eastbrook Church through Eastbrook at Home at 8, 9:30, and 11 AM. Here is a prayer for the first Sunday of Advent from The Book of Common Prayer:

Almighty God, give us grace to cast away the works of darkness, and put on the armor of light, now in the time of this mortal life in which your Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge both the living and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal; through him who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

This weekend we begin a new series, “‘Tis the Reason,” as I preach from Matthew 16:21-28. Thus begins one of the most dramatic turns in the Gospel of Matthew from Galilee toward Jerusalem, and from Jesus’ Messianic identity being unveiled to His stark mission to suffer and rise again for humanity.

You can access our Advent devotional that accompanies the series as a PDF, online, or through the Eastbrook app.

This series continues our extended journey through the Gospel of Matthew, which includes our previous series “Family Tree,” “Power in Preparation,” “Becoming Real,” “The Messiah’s Mission,” “Stories of the Kingdom: parables of Jesus,” and “Who Do You Say I Am?

We also continue in-person services at 8:00, 9:30, and 11:00 AM this weekend at the Eastbrook Campus, and you no longer need to RSVP ahead of time.

If you are new to Eastbrook, we want to welcome you to worship and would ask you to text EBCnew to 94000 as a first step into community here at Eastbrook.

Each Sunday at 8, 9:30, and 11 AM, you can participate with our weekly worship service at home with your small group, family, or friends. This service will then be available during the week until the next Sunday’s service starts. You can also access the service directly via Vimeo, the Eastbrook app, or Facebook.

If you are not signed up for our church emailing list, please sign up here. Also, please remember that during this time financial support for the church is critical as we continue minister within our congregation and reach out to our neighborhood, city, and the world at this challenging time. Please give online or send in your tithes and offerings to support the ministry of Eastbrook Church.

“Naming” Jesus

This past weekend at Eastbrook, we concluded our preaching series, “Who Do You Say I Am?”, by finally drawing near to the text from which the title of the series arises: Matthew 16:13-20. In this dramatic turning point in the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus asks His disciples a series of questions, including “Who do you say I Am?” Peter’s bold declaration of Jesus’ identity leads to an exchange between them. In a sense, Peter “names” Jesus, but in a deeper and more true way Jesus names Peter.

This message is part of the sixth part of our longer series on Matthew, which includes “Family Tree,” “Power in Preparation,” “Becoming Real,” “The Messiah’s Mission,” and “Stories of the Kingdom.”

You can find the message video and outline below. You can also view the entire series here. Join us for weekend worship in-person or remotely via Eastbrook at Home.


“When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, 
‘Who do people say the Son of Man is?’” (Matthew 16:13)

Jesus’ First Question (Matthew 16:13-14)

“Who do people say the Son of Man is?”

Who Have People Said Jesus Is?

  • John the Baptist (Matthew 14:2)
  • Elijah (11:14)
  • Jeremiah or one of the prophets (12:41)

Jesus’ Second Question (Matthew 16:15)

“But what about you? Who do you say I am?”

How had the disciples previously named Jesus?:

  • Rabbi with authority to teach (4:18-22; 7:28; 13:10-17, 36)
  • Healer and miracle worker (8:14-15; 14:18-21, 25-27)
  • Enigma: “What kind of man is this?” (9:27)
  • Friend of Sinners (9:11-13)
  • Son of David (9:27)
  • Awesome one: “Truly you are the Son of God” (14:33)

Peter “Names” Jesus (Matthew 16:16)

“You are the Messiah, the Son of the Living God.”

Jesus is the Messiah

Jesus is the Son of the Living God

Jesus Names Peter (Matthew 16:17-20)

Jesus’ naming of Peter: “you are Peter”

An aside about Jesus’ command for silence on the matter

Encountering Jesus Today

Hearing Jesus ask us: “who do you say I am?”

“Naming” Jesus personallyHearing Jesus name us


Dig Deeper:

This week dig deeper in one or more of the following ways:

  • Memorize Matthew 16:15-16
  • Read through the Gospel of Matthew up to this point and note any way that Matthew records or describes titles of Jesus that would answer the question, “Who is Jesus?” Step back to reflect upon all the titles of Jesus given thus far in the Gospel of Matthew.
  • Take some time in stillness to reflect on Jesus’ question: But what about you? Who do you say I am?” How are you answering that right now? How might Peter’s answer or other titles of Christ in Scripture give shape to your answer?
  • Consider reading further on the titles of Jesus with John Stott’s The Incomparable Christ or Michael Scanlan’s Titles of Jesus.

Eastbrook at Home – November 21, 2021

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Join us for worship with Eastbrook Church through Eastbrook at Home at 8, 9:30, and 11 AM.

This weekend we conclude our series, “Who Do You Say I Am?,” as I preach from Matthew 16:13-20 about Jesus’ piercing question from which the title of our series takes its name and Peter’s bold response to that piercing question.

This series continues our extended journey through the Gospel of Matthew, which includes our previous series “Family Tree,” “Power in Preparation,” “Becoming Real,” “The Messiah’s Mission,” and “Stories of the Kingdom: parables of Jesus.”

We also continue in-person services at 8:00, 9:30, and 11:00 AM this weekend at the Eastbrook Campus, and you no longer need to RSVP ahead of time.

If you are new to Eastbrook, we want to welcome you to worship and would ask you to text EBCnew to 94000 as a first step into community here at Eastbrook.

Each Sunday at 8, 9:30, and 11 AM, you can participate with our weekly worship service at home with your small group, family, or friends. This service will then be available during the week until the next Sunday’s service starts. You can also access the service directly via Vimeo, the Eastbrook app, or Facebook.

If you are not signed up for our church emailing list, please sign up here. Also, please remember that during this time financial support for the church is critical as we continue minister within our congregation and reach out to our neighborhood, city, and the world at this challenging time. Please give online or send in your tithes and offerings to support the ministry of Eastbrook Church.

Living in the Waves

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One of the most well-known stories in the New Testament must be when Jesus invites Peter to walk on water in Matthew 14:22-33. Peter is often held up as either an example of bold faith in stepping out of the boat or faltering faith in sinking into the waves.

However, there is another part of the story that captures my attention and it has to do with the waves. When this memorable episode from the life of Jesus and the life of Peter takes place, it is surrounded by waves of challenge.

The first type of waves is the waves of people. Immediately before this, Jesus miraculously feeds a crowd of more than five thousand people. This crowd was pressing in around Jesus. Jesus dismissed them, but, even after the walking on water episode, they hunted Him down and asked for more. It is likely, from what we read in parallel accounts, that the crowds actually hoped to make Jesus king. The waves of people surrounded Him.

Along with the waves of people came the waves of emotions. After an exciting yet stressful ministry day with people, the disciples were exhausted. They seem not only exhausted by the work they were doing with Jesus, but also by the fact that Jesus Himself was difficult to understand. This led to a sort of emotional exhaustion and anticipation that always kept the disciples on their toes. They needed to get away.  It seems that Jesus also needed to get away. The pressures on Him to live into a human-defined image of Messiah-ship, yet pushing against that in obedience to the Father, lead Him to want to draw away with the Father again.

Of course, along with these waves of human pressure and emotional pressure come a third type: the waves of natural life. The literal winds and waves that beat against the boat threaten everyone in this situation. The natural order was not on their side and could not be easily controlled. This heightened physical circumstance augments the other more subtle waves around Jesus and His disciples.

Attention to the waves in this situation tells me one important thing to keep in focus. The waves – the challenges we face – are a normal part of life.

I want to draw this out because so many of us are waiting for “someday.” We all do this at times. We have that tendency to wait for a day when we believe that everything will become calm or everything will be at perfect peaceful. If not that, many of us are simply looking for the day when everything feels “normal,” even if we have never defined what that is.

When that normal day comes, many of us say, we will then be ready to follow Christ or take some dramatic step of faith. Until then, we are on hold in fear or confusion.

However, the very setting in which Peter makes his bold step of faith is in the waves. This is important to pay attention to because the Lord is reminding us through the context of this story that waves are normal.

The challenges of people and relationships that Jesus and the apostles faced are similar to the waves with people that we face.  The challenges of emotions and pressures that Jesus and the apostles faced are similar to the emotional waves that we face. The challenges of the natural things that happen – natural life changes, natural aging, natural circumstances of the environment – are similar to the natural waves that we face.

And this is what strikes me today: these waves are the normal setting in which faith rises up. Because of this, we don’t need to wait for someday.  Someday will not come because it does not exist. The waves in which we find ourselves are the setting in which we must take a step of faith.