Sermon: Prophets and fruit trees.

Isa  52:1-6, Gal; 5:13-23, Luke 1:68-79

We have just heard a prophecy by Zechariah about his soon-to-be born son John – ‘you, child, will be called the prophet of the most high.

Today we commemorate another prophet – not from the days of Isaiah, though he knew and loved the words of Isaiah. Not from the days of the first century, though he was familiar with all that John spoke and did. The man whose picture you can see is a New Zealand prophet – Te Whiti o Rongomai.

He was born in Taranaki about 1831, and went to a Lutheran mission school. He had already heard about the Gospel before his studies though, as Maori returning from the Bay of Islands had brought the good news with them. When the Lutheran missionary told Te Whiti and his friends that he came bringing the word of God, the fifteen -year old Te Whiti answered that “we know that word and greet you in God’s peace.’ Continue reading