Friday, July 17, 2009

Sunday Sundries for Pentecost 7

(For those of you who have not read the first blog on this site, this is a test blog. The Sunday Sundries are sent out each week by me to the members of Lamb of God Lutheran Church. I sent this one out yesterday.)

Thursday in the week of Pentecost 6

July 16, 2009

The Lord be with you

Well Kitty and I are back and so are the Sunday Sundries. On a personal note, if you have a chance to spend a few days at Colonial Williamsburg, take it. In many ways it is like stepping back 230 years.

This coming Sunday is the Seventh Sunday after Pentecost. We will be using Matins for our liturgy (page 219). The assigned lessons are: Jeremiah 23:1-6; Ephesians 2:11-22 and Mark 6:30-44. The Introit Psalm is Psalm 23. The antiphon is verse 6. The text for the sermon is Jeremiah 23:1. The sermon is titled “There is a Difference!” The opening hymn is “Almighty God, You Word Is Cast,” LSB 577. The sermon hymn is “Speak, O Lord, Your Servant Listens,” LSB 589. The closing hymn is “On What Has Now Been Sown,” LSB 921.

Preview of the Lessons

Jeremiah 23:1-6: Jeremiah had a long ministry, going from 626 to 571 bc. This puts him after the fall of the Northern Kingdom of Israel (722 bc) and reaching to the exile into Babylon of the Southern Kingdom of Judah (586 bc). His ministry began while the good king Josiah reigned. He was the son of the bad king Manasseh, who reigned for over 40 years. Though Josiah instituted many good reforms, it seems the reforms didn’t have a lasting impact. After Josiah came a quick succession of kings, all bad. The “church” and the people gladly returned to the “good old pagan days” of Manasseh. As Jeremiah and other prophets warned, this rejection of God led to the fall of Judah. This lesson is a warning to the leaders of the people, both religious and political. Instead of gathering the people into the green pasture of the Lord they are scattering them. This will lead to the exile. God, though, will not leave his people abandoned, but will gather them, ultimately through Jesus. The new shepherds appointed by the Lord will be faithful to the Word and therefore faithful to Christ. But we must we warned, even today, there are many false shepherds. We desire shepherds who are faithful to the Word and therefore faithful to Christ.

Ephesians 2:11-22: In this reading Paul is explaining how God, through the work of Jesus, reached out to Gentiles (you and me), and brought us into the same redeemed family as Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Jeremiah, Isaiah, King David, and so on. In-other-words, God in Christ was making a new “Israel.” One not based on the blood line of Jacob (AKA Israel) but based on the redeeming blood of Jesus. Based on passages like this one (and there are lots of others that are even plainer) the Church, right from the very beginning, understood all the ot promises about a restored Israel are referring to the Church and not the blood descendents of Jacob. To put this another way, the modern Millennialist’s ideas about the restored modern state of Israel are false. Those who proclaim such ideas are scattering God’s sheep for it leads people to trust in a false hope. Likewise those who preach hatred of Jews are also false shepherds, for Paul clearly states that both Jews and Gentiles through the same Holy Spirit have access to the same Father, because Christ died for both. By the way, this is a great Trinitarian text. Those who deny the Trinity are also false shepherds.

Mark 6:33-44: Last Sunday Rev. Wallace Mooney used this reading for the text of his sermon. It was a good sermon and I don’t have anything to add.

Sunday’s Collect

Heavenly Father, though we do not deserve Your goodness, still You provide for all our needs of body and soul. Grant us Your Holy Spirit that we may acknowledge Your gifts, give thanks for all Your benefits, and serve You in willing obedience; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

Sunday’s Introit

Psalm 23, antiphon verse 6

Don’t forget that this Friday, July 17, is Movie Night here at Lamb of God. We will be showing “One Night with the King”. It is the story about how one woman, Esther, saved her people. The script was drawn from the Bible and other ancient sources and was shown in theaters around the country. This would be a great event to invite a friend, especially a non-Christian one. The film will be introduced, and that introduction will include a message about God’s grace in Christ Jesus. The movie starts at 7:00 pm.

The new question we will be looking at in the Adult Bible Class is, “If a person lives his life as a non-Christian, and one day suffers a brain injury such that he has no memory of his life before the injury. Suppose this person becomes a Christian, and repents of his sins, but does NOT ask forgiveness for sins committed prior to his injury because ‘that wasn’t him.’ Is this person saved?” What do you think, and why? Join us Sunday at 9:00 am as we examine the Bible for an answer. In general it is interesting to my how many questions revolve around the topics of grace and forgiveness. This really isn’t surprising and our fallen human nature, and therefore our culture, is works oriented. Therefore God’s grace in Christ Jesus needs to be stressed, and never relegated to the back burner of a church’s life and proclamation.

The Church council was scheduled to meet Sunday, but that meeting has been postponed for a week. The Board of Evangelism, which was scheduled to meet next week will now be meeting this Sunday after the worship service.

Have you tried to guess whose baby pictures are posted in the Sunday School Room? Here is a clue: The people are Pastor & Kitty, Rob & Ramona Ludvik, Connie Melton and Sam Parks. Do you need more clues? They are available, but they cost. Hard clues cost $1.00. Medium clues cost $3.00. Easy clues cost $5.00. The clues are also posted in the Adult Sunday School room, along with entry forms. The correct answers will be in the August newsletter. There are prizes for the first ones to get all six right. One of those prizes is a pre-paid phone. Money raised will go to the Organ Fund.

The date for the installation of Rev. Ted Crandall as our Associate Pastor has not been set yet, but will most likely be on the 16, 23, or 30 of August here at Lamb of God. We are just waiting for word from Rev. Cliff Gade, our Circuit 18 Counselor, for which date is best for him. Pastor Crandall will be deployed to Beaufort and has already begun work. The Mission has really outgrown its current meeting facility (literally standing room only), and is looking for a new home. Also this Sunday I will be sharing with the congregation a letter we received from Pastor Gade in reference to this call. Please keep Pastor Crandall, his wife Helga, and their children Samantha, Rebekah, Nathan, and Allison, in your prayers.

There are still some backpacks missing. Please return them, packed full of the school supplies, so we can take them to Jesse Boyd Elementary School the first week of August.

Wow, did we have a run on the (Angle) Angel Pantry (food bank) this week. Please buy something extra for it and bring it to church Sunday.

As those of you who have heard me preach know, I have mentioned more than once that the liturgy and hymns we use every Sunday can be a blessed way of sharing God’s love in Christ Jesus. Well my short time with the District’s Ablaze Task-Force has motivated me to “put my money where my mouth is.” I’ve compiled a collection of quotes from the hymnal, as well as from the Lutheran Confessions and Martin Luther, under topic headings that are common points Christians tend to make while sharing the Gospel. This booklet will be posted on the District’s Ablaze website, but you will get to see it first. Copies have been placed in each mail box in the narthex.

Information for the August newsletter is due this coming Sunday.

Are you willing to help form a Cub Scout pack at Lamb of God? If so please tell pastor or Scott Mullinax. More information is in the July newsletter.

The new church directory is almost finished. A draft copy is in the narthex for you to check your information. If there are any corrections, simply print it in the draft copy and Kitty will use it to make the final copy.

A sign-up sheet is posted on the “good times a-comin’” bulletin board for the soon to be released (October 31) Lutheran Study Bible. There is also a great deal of information about the new study Bible on that bulletin board which gives you sample pages. We will take orders through September.

As always, refreshments are available before the worship service. Donations to help defray the cost are accepted.

Remember if you like the coffee you are drinking Sunday morning you can take a pound home. It is our own Luther’s Roast. It costs $12.00 a pound and the proceeds help with special projects at Lamb of God. Currently we are raising money to help buy a replacement organ, which will cost over $16,000.

Blessings in Christ,


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