Douglass Church - Douglass Blvd Christian Church


Every Sunday @ 11am in Louisville, KY, Rev. Derek Penwell broadens our minds with his sermons. Now, thanks to the interwebs, we can share them with you.


  • The Beauty of Anger (John 2:13-22)

    The Beauty of Anger (John 2:13-22)


    If you happen to be one of the people kicked to the curb by the folks in charge, Jesus’ anger down at the Temple may just be what love sounds like. Subscribe to us on iTunes! Sermon text: [ web][1] | [ doc][2] [1]: [2]:

  • Not Like Any Family Ive Ever Seen (Matthew 10.24-39)

    Not Like Any Family I've Ever Seen (Matthew 10.24-39)


    The reign of God announces a new kind of family, the beloved community, one that doesn’t underwrite a system built on racism, patriarchy, cisgender heterosexual norms, or wealth, or social position. It’s a different kind of family—one that makes room for those for whom there never seems to be enough room.The family Jesus announces isn’t first about destroying what you love; it’s about destroying that which—because of its need to retain power, to keep those in control … in control—could never love you back.Subscribe to us on iTunes!Sermon text: [ web][1] | [ doc][2][1]: [2]:

  • Protesting in Publice (Mark 2:23-3:6)

    Protesting in Publice (Mark 2:23-3:6)


    But it’s important to remember that Jesus’ protest, his public testimony, isn’t just a “no” to the folks in power; it’s a resounding “yes” to people who need the powers and principalities to step off the necks of the powerless, to work for the vulnerable—not against them. Jesus’ ministry is about laying out for us a vision of what God desires for all humanity, not just those who believe they can afford to look the other way at injustice. Subscribe to us on iTunes! Sermon text: [ web][1] | [ doc][2] [1]: [2]:

  • The Voice of God (Genesis 1:1-2:4a)

    The Voice of God (Genesis 1:1-2:4a)


    We need to find our own voice in the voice of God who cries out for a new creation, a new world, formed from the chaos—a world where the poor and the powerless finally have the seats of honor at the table… —a new world where immigrants are treated with the respect and dignity of those who are native born… —a new world where LGBBTQ people can flourish as full participants in this beautiful dance of community and solidarity… —a new world where poor black people and poor white people are no longer pitted against one another by the people who have a heavy stake in their continued division… —a new world where the needs of the many are taken more seriously than the demands of the few… We plead with God to create something new, and to give us the responsibility to help see it birthed. ;Subscribe to us on iTunes! Sermon text: [ web][1] | [ do

  • For the Common Good (1 Corinthians 12:3b-13)

    For the Common Good (1 Corinthians 12:3b-13)


    Paul says that the beloved community is about community. If someone is only concerned with “What’s in it for me?” the body will be miserable, just to the extent that a body cannot withstand an eye, an ear, or a pancreas that acts as though its function has no impact—except on itself. We are bound together you and I, a community given the task of living out the good news that Jesus seeks out those who’ve too often been cast aside, left to rot in the convenient waste bins of a disinterested world. The body of Christ, the community of faith anticipates the beloved community in which it is impossible to say to people of color, to the poor, the sick, the aged, the spat on, the pepper-sprayed, the victims of state-sanctioned terror, the forgotten ones: “‘I have no need of you.” Subscribe to us on iTunes! Sermon text: [ web][1] | doc [1]:

  • Why Unity Matters (John 17:1-11)

    Why Unity Matters (John 17:1-11)


    What Jesus prays for ultimately isn’t that we might be protected so that we can live happy lives, untroubled by inconvenience. He prays that we might be protected … as a way of safeguarding our unity. Because if Jesus’ followers can’t stand together against the things that cause God grief, then anything else we might have to say about love and peace and justice isn’t anything anybody ought to be expected to take seriously. Subscribe to us on iTunes! Sermon text: [ web][1] | doc [1]:

  • What Does the Spirit of Truth Look Like? (John 14:15-21)

    What Does the Spirit of Truth Look Like? (John 14:15-21)


    It’s difficult, I know. But think about what the first Advocate, Jesus, looked like, how he acted, who he loved and who he stood up for. The poor, the hungry, the sick and despairing, the forgotten and the powerless, right? Then look around you for those who look like *that; look for the advocates. Standing up for people this culture doesn’t think are worth it is hard, painful work. But that’s what the Advocate looks like, that’s how the Spirit of Truth sounds. Every time you see someone standing up for the vulnerable—you’ve seen the Holy Spirit. Every time you hear a voice raised in opposition to oppression and violence, you’ve heard the Spirit of Truth. Every time you’ve felt the hand of someone on your shoulder, holding you up against the wave of dehumanization that threatens to overwhelm you—you’ve felt the Advocate. We are the pre

  • Greater Works Than These (John 14:1-14)

    Greater Works Than These (John 14:1-14)


    Following me isn’t paint-by-numbers, no easy way to look like you know what you’re doing, without ever putting in the effort to become a master. That would be nice, but that’s not how it works. If you want to know the way to God, you’re going to have to live the way I live, challenge the injustice I challenge, show mercy the way I show mercy. Subscribe to us on iTunes! Sermon text: [ web][1] | doc [1]:

  • Hanging onto the Best Things (Acts 2:42-47)

    Hanging onto the Best Things (Acts 2:42-47)


    All who believed were together and had all things in common, the writer of Acts says. They’d sell their possessions and goods and distribute the proceeds to all, as any had need. Day by day, as they spent time together in the temple, they broke break together at home and ate their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having the good will of all the people. And day by day the Lord added to their number those who were being saved. Now, it may very well be that this earliest description of the church is nostalgic, an idealized account of something that never really existed in quite the mist-enshrouded way everybody liked to remember it, except in the imaginations of those who longed for a church that only seemed possible in simpler times. But so what? So what if we’re getting a sepia-toned picture of an idealized past? Be

  • Believe Harder (John 20:19-31)

    Believe Harder (John 20:19-31)


    The call to follow Jesus isn’t a call to give up your reason. It’s not about believing harder. It’s about being committed to moving forward, not knowing what you’ll encounter, but convinced you’ve got to do it anyway. You ask me … “Doubting Thomas” is the hero of this story, not because his doubting is somehow a map to mustering up belief for Post-Enlightenment moderns, but because he’s the guy that kept showing up, absent empirical evidence and verifiable truth. Everybody else got a sneak preview, right? Subscribe to us on iTunes! Sermon text: [ web][1] | doc [1]:

  • Death (Isaiah 65:17-25)

    Death (Isaiah 65:17-25)


    I’ve heard a story about a different world, a world unlike the one we inhabit—where Death is king and we are his pawns and victims. I’ve listened to the tales of another world where there’s enough to eat and everyone has a safe place to lay their heads at night, where people don’t have to wonder whether they’ll be welcomed and embraced because of the color of their skin, or the country of their birth, or the people they love. I’ve heard a story about a different world where on Friday Death is King, but by Sunday Death is dead. Subscribe to us on iTunes! Sermon text: [ web][1] | doc [1]:

  • Whistling Past the Graveyard (Ezekiel 37:1-14)

    Whistling Past the Graveyard (Ezekiel 37:1-14)


    We have a chance to be the miracle God is unleashing on a world plagued by deaths of despair. We can bring hope to the hopeless, a light to a dark world. Hang on. God is still breathing. The spirit still comes from the four winds. Life may seem to be having a rough go of it in the valley of the dry bones right now. But God’s isn’t finished yet. Subscribe to us on iTunes! Sermon text: [ web][1] | doc [1]:

  • Life on the Margins (John 4:5-42)—Nicole Hardin preaching

    Life on the Margins (John 4:5-42)—Nicole Hardin preaching


    Subscribe to us on iTunes!Sermon text: [ web][1] | [ doc][2] [1]: [2]:

  • Heading Out (Genesis 12:1-4a)

    Heading Out (Genesis 12:1-4a)


    God says, “Go.” And Genesis says, “So he went.” Don’t you find that peculiar? Faced with a choice between a past he knows and the promise of a future he can’t quite wrap his head around, Abram throws up his hands and walks into the unknown. We who live in a world beset by a whole caravan-load of problems ourselves—problems that make the future just as uncertain for us as it was for old Abram—we understand how difficult a choice he must have had. With the fate of healthcare for millions of people up in the air, with questions about Russian interference in our elections, with the fate of millions of immigrants and refugees in doubt, with the stock market taking another swan dive, with the Coronavirus and a president who’s never met a doctor he didn't' think he knew more than prompting people to wonder whether or not we’re in some kind of apocalyptic Hollywood blockbuster, we know that the future is much more unstable than we’d antic

  • Why Politics Isnt a Dirty Word (Matthew 4:1-11)

    Why Politics Isn't a Dirty Word (Matthew 4:1-11)


    Oh, people talk about “the road less traveled,” but I mean, come on, the reason it’s less traveled is that it’s difficult. And most folks avoid difficult like the Kardashians avoid anonymity. It’s hard to imagine a world in which the difficult is not only possible but every bit as good as it’s cracked up to be. It’s tough to picture a world in which there is enough for everyone, where the poor and the forgotten are just as important as the politicians who so regularly forget about them, where the embattled and the beleaguered can find some rest because everyone else is vigilantly standing watch over them, where the depressed and the addicted can find support instead of stigma and punishment, where straight kids and trans kids and gay kids can become who they’re meant to be without sacrificing who they are on the altar of conformity, where black parents don’t have to have “the talk” with their children in an attempt to inoculate th

  • No Matter Where, No Matter What (Matthew 5:13-20)

    No Matter Where, No Matter What (Matthew 5:13-20)


    But the church has never existed for the purpose of inviting people to be successes. The church has steadfastly maintained the unenviable claim that its sole purpose is to invite people to failure—at least failure in the way much of the rest of the world sees it. We’re a people who claim to take the side of the powerless against the powerful, to worry more about securing food and housing and healthcare for the poor than securing tax breaks for the wealthy. In a world in which the beautiful, the influential, the successful get all the attention, we followers of Jesus opt for failure by being called to love those for whom so many others can manage only fear and hatred. But a people who follow a criminal executed by the state can never get too caught up in what everybody else understands as success anyway. Subscribe to us on iTunes! Sermon text: web | doc

  • Bizarro World (Matthew 5:1-12)

    Bizarro World (Matthew 5:1-12)


    The Beatitudes aren't nice little self-help nuggets cross-stitched onto grandma's throw pillows. They're the revolutionary announcement of Jesus that the world we take for granted as the way things are always going to be, where rulers lie, cheat, and steal because nobody has the courage to stop them, where the hungry have their food stamps reduced, where the stranger in the land is no longer welcome—all of that is going to be displaced in favor of something new, something that couldn't stand in starker contrast to the kingdoms of this world shown to Jesus on that mountaintop in the wilderness, something that blesses those who’d have a difficult time recognizing happiness if it came and sat down next to them at the supper table. Subscribe to us on iTunes! Sermon text: web | doc

  • The Empire Will Always Fail (Matthew 4:12-23)

    The Empire Will Always Fail (Matthew 4:12-23)


    But you see, fishermen are the perfect place to start for a new kingdom—one that will challenge the Roman Empire, which was always and only about enriching the people who already sat atop the food chain. The Roman Empire cared nothing for the peasants, the merchants, and those who fished for a living … except how best to pacify them, to keep them in line so they didn't cause trouble down at the country club. But this new kingdom Jesus announces is the kind of good news that appeals to everybody else—the other 99%. In fact, the news is so good that, according to Matthew, "Jesus went throughout Galilee teaching in [the] synagogues and proclaiming" it—healing the social, physical, and economic disease in the land. Subscribe to us on iTunes! Sermon text: web | doc

  • Thats Great for You, But What About Us? (Isaiah 49:1-12)

    That's Great for You, But What About Us? (Isaiah 49:1-12)


    If the church can’t find its voice when immigrants are being threatened in our own state, or when women bear the onerous burden of proof (while their abusers go on with their lives), or when houseless people are harassed because their very existence is inconvenient to society … if the church can’t stand together with the oppressed and the forgotten ones with all that going on, then whatever else it might think of itself, it’s not the church. Subscribe to us on iTunes! Sermon text: web | doc

  • Bringing Forth Justice (Isaiah 42:1-9)

    Bringing Forth Justice (Isaiah 42:1-9)


    Justice isn’t going to be brought forth by hiring more police and investing in bigger prisons, or by some cease-fire that promises not to kill people if they promise not to kill us first. Justice will only finally be established when God raises up a people who embody the justice of God—the same God, who when faced with our propensity for violence and hatred, offered us not the sharp end of a stick but the fragile body of a Jewish peasant. That’s God’s idea of how you go about bringing forth justice. Subscribe to us on iTunes! Sermon text: web | doc

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