February 9, 2012
The Lord be with you
This coming Sunday is the Sixth Sunday after the Epiphany. For our liturgy we will be using the Setting 3 of the Divine Service (page 184 of the hymnal). The appointed lessons for the day are 2 Kings 5:1-14, 1 Corinthians 10:19-11:1, and Mark 1:40-45. We will be celebrating the Lord’s Supper. To prepare you can read the section of “The Sacrament of the Altar” in Luther’s Small Catechism. Our opening hymn will be “The People That in Darkness Sat,” (LSB 412). The sermon hymn will be “Christ, the Word of God Incarnate,” (LSB 540). Our closing hymn will be “Jesus Christ, My Sure Defense,” (LSB 741). Our distribution hymns will be “Come, Join in Cana’s Feast,” (LSB 408), “Thy Body, Given for Me, O Savior,” (LSB 619), and “When I Behold Jesus Christ,” (LSB 542). “Come, Join in Cana’s Feast” is the hymn we are learning this month. Sunday’s sermon is based on the Gospel lesson. The text will be Mark 1:44. The sermon title is “Restored Lives.”
In our prayers Sunday we will remember the Lutheran Church in Korea (LCK) and their President, Dr. Hyun Sub Um. We will remember Jack and Cathy Carlos, missionaries in Guinea West Africa. We will remember the persecuted believers in Colombia and our sister congregations: Eternal Shepherd, Seneca, SC; Immanuel, Simpsonville, SC; Emmanuel, Asheville, NC; Redeemer, Burlington, NC; Grace, Summerville, SC. We remember the orphans in Haiti that our youth are seeking to help. We also will continue to remember those who are trapped by the modern practice of slavery, and those who have fallen victim to our cultures acceptance of abortion and advocacy of sexual immorality.
The video below is of our opening hymn, “The People That in Darkness Sat,” sung by the “Lutheran Warbler.”
Our adult Bible class meets at 9:00 Sunday morning. This Sunday we will pick up at Matthew 14. As always, everyone is invited to come.
Preview of the Lessons
2 Kings 5:1-14: This is the story of Naaman, a commander in the army of Syria. At the time of this story, Syria was certainly not viewed as a “friendly” by the Israelites. Naaman had leprosy. A slave girl, captured during a raid in Israel, told her owners about the prophet Elisha, saying the prophet could cure Naaman. (She, in essence, became a missionary.) Naaman went to his king, who sent the commander to the King of Israel with a massive gift. The King of Israel is dismayed, thinking the Syrian king wants to start a war. Elisha hears about it, and sends of Naaman. Elisha, through a messenger, sends Naaman to the Jordan River, telling him to dip himself seven times. While at first Naaman resists (he was expecting a show), cooler heads prevail and he obeys. Sure enough, he is restored to health and professes faith in the God of Israel (something the King of Israel seemed to lack). This story is depicted in Station 8 of our custom Stations of the Cross, where Simon of Cyrene takes up the cross of Jesus. In both cases we see that the “God of Israel” is also the God of all people. Many have seen the washing of Naaman is a foreshadowing of baptism, where were are cleansed from the sickness of sin.
1 Corinthians 10:19-11:1: We pick-up where we left off last week. Paul is speaking of our witness to those who are “weak.” The issue used to illustrate the point is still food. When Paul speaks of the “cup of the Lord” and the “table of the Lord” he is speaking of the Lord’s Supper. He ends by urging us to be imitators of him as he is an imitator of Jesus. Good roll models are exceptionally valuable, just as bad roll models can be exceptionally destructive.
Mark 1: 40-45: Jesus heals a leper, which connects this lesson with our Old Testament lesson. Just as Naman comes to faith in the God of Israel, so this healed man comes to faith in Jesus. This restored man also becomes a witness for Jesus. As this reading is the text for the sermon, I’m not going to write more.
• I’ve got word back from Gardner-Webb about my D.Min. project (the Stations of the Cross). I need to tweak my survey a little, but it should be ready by this Sunday. That means, in Sunday’s bulletin, there will be a survey that I need everyone to fill out and return by Ash Wednesday. This is vital for the project. Thank You.
• GAME DAY! Don’t forget that “Game Day” is this Saturday, February 11. We will be playing Pictionary. We begin at 1:00 PM. PLEASE invite a friend and join in the fun.
• The Evangelism Committee will meet for lunch and business Sunday, after the worship service.
Well, I pray I’ll see you Sunday.
Blessings in Christ,
Pastor John Rickert