Friday, February 1, 2013

Worship for Epiphany 4

Friday after Epiphany 3
February 1, 2013

The Lord be with you

This coming Sunday is the Fourth Sunday after Epiphany. We will be using Matins for our liturgy (page 219 in the hymnal). The appointed lessons are Jeremiah 1:4-19; 1 Corinthians 12:31b-13:13; and Luke 4:31-44. The appointed Psalm is Psalm 71:1-11 (antiphon verse 12). Our hymns will be “The Only Son from Heaven” (LSB 404), “O Savior of Our Fallen Race” (LSB 403) and “Hail, O Source of Every Blessing” (LSB 409). The Sermon is titled “Jesus’ Authority” and the text is Luke 4:32.

In our prayers Sunday we will remember American citizen and Christian Pastor, Saeed Abedini, unjustly sentenced to 8 years in prison in Iran. We will also give God thanks for the release of Pastor Youcef, whom we have prayed for in the pastWe will remember the persecuted believer in mainland China, specially Fao Fuqin, Zhao Guoai, Yang Caizhen, Yang Hongzhen and Li Shuangpin. . We will pray for the Japan Lutheran Church and their president, Rev. Yutaka Kumei. We will remember missionaries Jack and Cathy Carlos, who are working the Maninka people in Guinea West. We will continue to remember those who have been mislead by our cultures advocacy of sexual immorality and abortion, asking for healing in the lives damaged by these sins and those who are trapped in modern-day slavery (often now called Human Trafficking). We will remember our sister congregations: Messiah, Prince of Peace, Resurrection, Charlotte, NC; Bethel, Claremont, NC; Holy Lamb, Myrtle Beach, SC Abundant Life, All Saints, Ascension, Chapel for the Deaf, all Charlotte, NC; and Risen Christ, Myrtle Beach, SC

Below is a video of our sermon hymn, “Hail, O Source of Every Blessing.” Clearly, the congregation is small and the singing is a little weak, but you can hear all the words.

Our adult Sunday school class has begun studying the CTCR report “together with all creatures: caring for God’s living earth.” This is an excellent and biblical examination of ecological issues. Quite obviously, this will have real implications about how we live on the earth. Class begins at 9:00 am. Everyone is welcome to join in the discussion.

Preview of Lessons

Jeremiah 1:4-19
This reading is the call of Jeremiah. It will be a hard call, for the people of Israel will reject him. Yet God will be with him. God has called him from the womb and placed his powerful word in Jeremiah’s mouth. Judgment will come upon Israel for rejecting God.

1 Corinthians 12:31b-13:13
This is the famous “love” chapter of the Bible.

Luke 4:31-44
The authority of Jesus is revealed through many outstanding works. He arrives in Capernaum, after being rejected in Nazareth (last week’s lesson). Capernaum becomes his “home” base. It was also the home town of Peter, Andrew, John and James.

Lessons Summarized
Yesterday I met with several other pastors up in Ashville. While there one of the brothers shared an internet site what provides a summary of the lessons by comparing them. I like it and so I’m going to start providing it here, under Lessons Summarized.

Jesus was sent to preach the good news of the kingdom of God (Luke 4:43). His preaching is an epiphany or manifestation of God, because His Word reveals the authority of His Cross and Resurrection, by which He has atoned for the sins of the world. By the preaching of His Gospel in every place, He silences the unclean spirits and casts out demons, heals the diseases of body and soul, and restores life and health to His creation (Luke 4:40–41). For the sake of His divine love, He is patient and kind toward us; He bears all things,” endures all things,” and delivers up His body to save us (1 Cor. 13:3–4, 7). So also for the sake of His love, He calls and sends His prophets, as ministers of His Word, to pluck up and to break down, to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant” (Jer. 1:10).


Junior Confirmation will go longer than typical this upcoming Wednesdays. Class still begins at 6:30 pm.

Well, I pray I’ll see you Sunday.

Blessings in Christ,
Pastor John Rickert

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