Pastor

The First Church. Preaching the Gospel of Jesus.

29 Howard St., West Bridgewater, MA​​                    Established 1651.

​Sunday worship, 10:00 a.m.                                      (508) 587-3118

Different Bible studies on Thursdays at 10:30 a.m. and 1:00 p.m.

Our folks at the School on Wheels fundraiser, May 2019:

Pastor Steve Finlan (MTS, Boston University, 2013; Ph.D. University of Durham, 2004) began serving at First Church in August 2018. Some of his sermons are posted below.

Bible Studies:​​

  We have a Bible study on Thursdays, at 10:30 am. It has resumed at the church, downstairs with social distancing and masks. It also can be accessed by Zoom. We are reading Isaiah.

United by love and guided by ​the teachings of Jesus,we maintain a

   welcoming house for the worship of God.

We study the Bible, and teach in Spirit and in truth. We seek to build 

   a sustaining and caring community of faith. Reflecting our

   history, we have affiliation with both the UCC and the UUA.

Sunday Worship

We have resumed in-church services, limited to 25 in the sanctuary and 25 in Fellowship Hall, with mandatory mask-wearing. The service is also broadcast on the radio (only within a half-mile of the church) on 102.9. Come join us at 10:00 am. Wear a mask.

  The pastor also pre-records the sermon and posts it at Facebook.com/Stephen.Finlan1. You can click on the video that'll be there. Video links of the most recent sermons are also posted here.

Quote of the Week:

“When Jesus said, ‘You must go and learn what this saying means, “I desire mercy and not sacrifice”’ (Hos. 6:6), there is nothing to show that the disciples sensed his meaning . . . The saying [was] repeated twice (Mt. 9:13; 12:7) . . . Apparently no one took the trouble to note that Jesus was challenging his hearers to try to realize what Hosea meant when he declared that God had no use for sacrifices but in their stead desired only right human conduct.” 

— Leroy Waterman, The Religion of Jesus, 97-98 


Harvest Marketplace
Our Harvest Marketplace was a great success, drawing in over $7,500. Thanks for helping us with the work of the church. Contributions to the church can be sent to P.O. Box 361, West Bridgewater, MA 02379.

Partial Index:

​Micah
3:3 > 6-16-19               
6:6-8 > 1-29-17, 2-11 & 12-23-18, 10-6-19
6:7 > 10-27-19

Zechariah
​4:6 > 7-15-18                     9:9-10 > 8-19-18, 4-14-19, 10-18-20
12:10 > 1-27-19


Luke
1:39-53 > 12-22-19                2:25-36 > 12-24-19
2:30 > 7-26-20                       2:38 > 7-26-20

2:42-52 > 12-30-18                3:1-6 > 12-9-18
3:15-17 > 12-16-18                3:21-23 > 1-13-19
4:16-21 > 8-19 & 12-30-18, 2-3-19
4:24-30 > 9-9-18, 2-3-19         4:29 > 8-9-20

5:31-32 > 9-15-19                   6:17 > 6-14-20

6:17-21 > 2-17-19                   6:27-36 > 2-17-19

6:35-36 > 9-9-18, 6-28-20

7:50 > 10-7 & 12-23-18           8:15 > 10-7-18

8:17 > 2-17-19                         9:4 > 6-14-20

9:52 > 6-14-20                         9:52-55 > 1-28-18

10:5-11 > 7-7-19                      10:16 > 5-10-20

10:18-20 > 8-26-18, 7-7-19

10:25-37 > 9-9-18, 7-14-19
10:39 > 4-12-20                       10:42 > 4-7-19, 4-12-20

11:50-51 > 3-17-19                  12:13-21 > 8-4-19

12:32 > 4-5 & 8-30-20             12:32-36 > 8-4 & 8-11-19
13:1-5 > 3-17-19                      13:20-21 > 9-8-19
13:31-35 > 3-17 & 12-22-19        14:7-11 > 9-22-19
15:8-10 > 9-15-19                    15:11-32 > 3-31-19
​16:10-13 > 9-22-19                  17:11-19 > 10-13-19
17:21 > 8-12-18, 7-14 & 10-6-19  
​18:1-8 > 10-20-19                    18:8 > 7-19-20

18:9-14 > 10-27-19                  18:38-42 > 5-10-20

18:42 > 10-7-18                       19:1-10 > 11-3-19

19:9 > 5-10-20                          19:12-24 > 12-22-19

19:29-40 > 4-14-19                   20:27-38 > 11-10-19

22:31-34 > 4-5-20                     22:54-62 > 4-5-20

22:61 > 1-28-18                        23:34 > 12-1-19

23:43 > 12-1-19                        24:10-11 > 4-12-20

24:13-32 > 4-26-20                   24:49-52 > 6-16-19

Colossians

​1:15 > 5-10 & 6-28-20            1:16 > 10-7-18, 5-24 & 8-2-20

2:9-10 > 12-22-19                   2:15 > 8-26-18

​3:3-4 > 6-21-20                      3:10 > 8-9-20

3:12-17 > 1-6-19                    ​3:22 > 9-8-19


James

1:17-22 > 9-2 & 9-30-18, 7-14 & 12-1-19, 6-28-20

1:27 > 9-2 & 9-30-18                     3:9-11 > 10-7-18
2:12-18 > 9-9 & 9-30-18
​2:24 > 6-28-20                                3:1-6 > 9-16-18
​3:16-17 > 7-15 & 9-23 & 9-30-18       4:1-8 > 7-15 & 9-23-18
5:13-20 > 9-30-18​​


READ A SERMONClick on a title. A tab will open at far lower left of screen. Click on that to open the Word file.
2017:
1-29: The Pure in Heart
3-19: In Spirit and in Truth
10-22: Forgive, Hand It On
2018:
1-21: Pour Out Your Heart
1-28: No Deceit
2-11: Healing the Broken Hearted

SERMONS AT THE FIRST CHURCH:
7-8: Who Does He Think He Is?
7-15: Righteousness and Peace Will Kiss
8-5: Bread from Heaven
8-12: Be Imitators of God
8-19: That I Should Lose Nothing
8-26: What Gives Life
9-2: Be Doers
9-9: Children or Dogs?
​9-16: Divine Things
9-23: First Pure
9-30: Whoever Is Not against Us

10-7: Created the Worlds

10-21: Lord It Over

10-28: May the Lord Deal Kindly w/ you (Ruth)

11-4: Love 'm Both?

11-18: Shine Like the Stars

11-25: The Letter and the Spirit

12-2: With the Clouds

12-9: All Flesh: The Theme of Peace

12-16: With All Joy

12-23: To Love Kindness

12-24: What Child Is This?

12-30: Debating with Scholars

2019

1-6: The Word Dwells in You Richly

1-13: I Will Be with You


From Blessing of the Animals, 2020:

more sermons

2-9: Let Your Light Shine

2-16: First Be Reconciled

2-23: My Holy Hill

3-1: Joseph Aoude's sermon:

​       Lead Me Not Into Temptation

3-8: Born Again

3-15: Gushing Up

3-22: Who Sinned?

3-29: Speaking the Truth

4-5: The Sheep Will Be Scattered >

​ >    video link

4-12: There They Will See Me >

>     video link

4-19: Suffer Trials

4-26: Burning within Us

5-3: They Know His Voice

5-10: If You Know Me

5-17: Another Advocate

5-24:Taken Up from You

5-31: I Will Pour Out My Spirit

6-7: Make Disciples

6-14: Freely You Received

6-21: Everything Secret Will Be Known

6-28: A Cup of Water

7-5: Revealed to Infants

7-12: It Shall Not Return to Me Empty

7-19: Groaning for Redemption

7-26: A Pearl of Great Value

8-2: Increasing and Yielding

8-9: Where Are Prophets w/o Honor?

8-16: From the Heart

8-23: The Living God

8-30: Even the Dogs

9-6: Regaining That One >

>   video link

9-13: Live to the Lord > video link

9-20: May Not Perish > video link

9-27: Change Your Minds > video link

10-4: To Collect His Produce > video link

10-11: Invite Everyone > video link

10-18: Not the Son of David > video link

10-25: Render to God > video link

11-1: One Father > video link

11-8: Reveals His Thoughts > video link

11-15 (at home): Friends of God > video link

11-22: The Least of These > video link

11-29: (not yet)



Links to Pastor Steve's books

browse Salvation Not Purchased: Overcoming the Ransom Idea to Rediscover the Original Gospel Teaching

browse The Family Metaphor in Jesus' Teaching

browse Bullying in the Churches

a chapter from Problems with Atonement

chapter The Apostle Paul & the Pauline Tradition

excerpt from Sacrifice and Atonement: Psychological Motives and Biblical Patterns

Link to writings at ResearchGate.

Link to writings at Academia.edu


Steve's email: sfinlan@bu.edu

Link to Steve's own website, with more sermons, book links, and research links.

More Sermons at The First Church

1-27-19: Drink of One Spirit

2-3: To Proclaim Release

2-17: Be . . . As Your Father

2-24: A Spiritual Body

3-3: From One Degree of Glory to Another

3-6 (Ash Wed.): Too Great a Burden

3-10: Hearts and Mouths

3-17: Under His Wing

3-24: Spiritual Drink

3-31: We Had to Celebrate

4-7: ​Con-Formed

4-14: A New Thing

4-19 (Good Friday): Who He Is

4-21 (Easter): My Father and Your Father

4-28: Swallow Up Death

5-5: Feed My Sheep

5-12: I Will Comfort You: Hear My Voice

5-19: Alpha and Omega

6-2: The Secret of Unity

6-9 (Pentecost): The Spirit of Truth

6-16: Was Carried Up

​6-23: Jew or Greek

6-30: For Freedom

7-7: The Dust of Your Town

7-14: The Word Is Very Near

7-21: Hospitality

7-28: Jenny Williams's sermon:

​      For the Beauty of the Earth

8-4: How Can I Give You Up?

8-11: The Real Treasure

8-18: A Better Country

8-25: Warren Turner's sermon:

   The Jesus Ethic

9-1: Repairer of the Breach

9-8: You Will Do Even More

9-15: A Broken Spirit

9-22: Faithful in a Little

9-29: The Good Fight

10-6: The Kingdom Within

10-13: Cleansing or Saving?

10-20: Build Houses

10-27: Other Rogues

11-3: A Son of Abraham

11-10: My Redeemer Liveth!

11-17: Rivers of Living Water

12-1: While It Is Day

12-8: Fulfills the Law

12-15: The Least in the Kingdom

12-22: Scattered the Proud

12-24: From the East

12-29: The Fear of Death

2020:

1-5: Children of God

1-12: To Fulfill All Righteousness

1-19: Arise and Shine

1-26: The Time Is Fulfilled

2-2: The Meek Will Inherit