Thursday, November 5, 2009

Worship for Pentecost 23

Thursday after All Satins’ Day
Commemoration of Zacharias and Elizabeth
September 5, 2009

The Lord be with you

This coming Sunday, November 8, is the Twenty-third Sunday after Pentecost. At Lamb of God Lutheran (LCMS) we will be using the first setting of the Morning (Divine) Service, which begins on page 151 of the hymnal. This will be a Communion Service. Our appointed lessons are 1 Kings 17:8-16, Hebrews 9:24-28, and Mark 12:38-44. The sermon text is Mark 12:38 and is titled “It’s Showtime!” Our opening hymn will be “Open Now Thy Gates of Beauty,” LSB 901. The Sermon hymn will be “The Temple Rang with Golden Coins,” LSB 787. Our Closing hymn will be “May God Bestow on Us His Grace” LSB 824. The Distribution hymns will be “Lord Jesus Christ, We Humbly Pray” LSB 623, “Take My Life and Let it Be” LSB 784, and “Come, My Soul, with Every Care” LSB 779.

Better Noise has every hymn for Sunday except “Come My Soul, with Every Care,” which no one seems to have. I found a video of a Lutheran congregation singing “Open Now Thy Gates of Beauty.” It is an installation service. Though they are not “choir” quality, they sing with gusto. The embedding for the video has been disabled, but if you click here you will go to it and can listen.

Preview of the Lessons
1 Kings 17:8-16: This is a portion of the story about Elijah and the widow of Zarephath. The drought was dragging on as the Lord disciplined his people for worshiping Baal. Elijah is sent to this widow, who would provide for him. The Lord provides for her by miraculously extending her supply of oil and flour. One thing we can draw from this story is the importance of putting God first, as this widow did. Another is that God does care and provide for us, even in difficult times. It actually is a good stewardship text.

Hebrews 9:24-28: The writer continues to show the superiority of Christianity over Judaism. In this case Christ is the superior sacrifice, needing to be made only once. Through this sacrifice entrance into the true Holy Place, heaven, is gained.

Mark 12:38-44: Christ and his disciples are at the Temple. He warns against a “for-show” religion. Then a poor widow comes with a meager offering, worth about half a cent. Others had been giving much, much larger sums. Jesus points to the widow as a model of giving, for she gave out of the funds needed for necessities while the others gave from their disposable income. Again this is a good stewardship text. It is also good to accent how God has regard for that which humanity looks down upon. Jesus once said, “Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”

Sunday’s Collect
Almighty and ever-living God, You have given exceedingly great and precious promises to those who trust in You. Grant us so firmly to believe in Your Son Jesus that our faith may never be found wanting; through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

Gradual (Rev. 7:14b; Ps 84:5)
These are ones coming out of the great tribulation.
They have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.
Blessed are those whose strength is in you,
In whose heart are the highways to Zion.

Verse (2 Cor. 8:9)
Alleluia. You know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich. Alleluia.

Introit (Ps. 107:1-2, 41-42; antiphon: Ps. 107:8)
Let them thank the LORD for his steadfast love,
for his wondrous works to the children of men!
Oh give thanks to the LORD, for he is good,
for his steadfast love endures forever!
Let the redeemed of the LORD say so,
whom he has redeemed from trouble.
He raises up the needy out of affliction
and makes their families like flocks.
The upright see it and are glad,
and all wickedness shuts its mouth.
Glory be to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning,
is now, and will be forever. Amen.
Let them thank the LORD for his steadfast love,
for his wondrous works to the children of men!

Blessings in Christ,
Pastor John Rickert

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