Thursday, September 18, 2014

Worship Notes of the Feast of St. Matthew, Apostle and Evangelist 2012

Thursday after Pentecost 14
September 18, 2014

The Lord be with you

This coming Sunday is the Feast of St. Matthew, Apostle and Evangelist. I have tried to find out why September 21 was selected to commemorate this saint, but have failed. Maybe someone who reads this knows and can leave a comment. Saints days are often selected to fall on their death date. They also often fall on a day the remains of the saint were buried in some special church. Occasionally there is some other reason. Whatever the reason September 21 was chosen, it is the date used by all liturgical churches of the western tradition. Eastern churches have selected a different date.

Most congregations offer the Lord’s Supper on all Feasts and Festivals (but not necessarily on Commemorations). That means that, even though our regular schedule would make this Sunday a non-communion Sunday, we would offer the Lord’s Supper if we followed this practice. We will break from this general practice and stick with our regular schedule, which means we will use the Service of Prayer and Preaching (page 260) for our liturgy. This service has no option for the Lord’s Supper. This service uses the appointed Psalm instead of the appointed Introit. Therefore the appointed lessons for Sunday are: Psalm 119:33-40 (35); Ezekiel 2:8-3:11; Ephesians 4:7-16; Matthew 9:9-13. The opening hymn will be “Make Songs of Joy” (LSB 484). The sermon hymn will be “By All Your Saints in Warfare” (LSB 518:1, 25, 3). The closing hymn will be “Son of God, Eternal Savior” (LSB 842). The sermon text will be Matthew 9:9. The sermon is titled “Lessons from St. Matthew.”

I posted a Bible study about our sermon hymn earlier this week. Below is a video of our sermon from Concordia Morning Chapel at Concordia University, Seward, NE.

Our Sunday morning Bible hour begins at 9:00 am. We have begun considering the biblical themes of Witness, Mercy and Life Together. The study of God’s word is a key way to keep the Third Commandment which Luther explains as meaning, “We should fear and love God so that we do not despise preaching and His Word, but hold it sacred and gladly hear and learn it.” Bible study is a great opportunity to “gladly hear and learn” God’s word.  

What follows are the lessons for Sunday. There is not a summary from the Synod.

Psalm 119:33-40 (35)
33        Teach me, O Lord, the way of your statutes;
                   and I will keep it to the end.
34        Give me understanding, that I may keep your law
                   and observe it with my whole heart.
35        Lead me in the path of your commandments,
                   for I delight in it.
36        Incline my heart to your testimonies,
                   and not to selfish gain!
37        Turn my eyes from looking at worthless things;
                   and give me life in your ways.
38        Confirm to your servant your promise,
                   that you may be feared.
39        Turn away the reproach that I dread,
                   for your rules are good.
40        Behold, I long for your precepts;
                   in your righteousness give me life!

Ezekiel 2:8-3:11
2:8       “But you, son of man, hear what I say to you. Be not rebellious like that rebellious house; open your mouth and eat what I give you.” 9And when I looked, behold, a hand was stretched out to me, and behold, a scroll of a book was in it. 10And he spread it before me. And it had writing on the front and on the back, and there were written on it words of lamentation and mourning and woe.
3:1       And he said to me, “Son of man, eat whatever you find here. Eat this scroll, and go, speak to the house of Israel.” 2So I opened my mouth, and he gave me this scroll to eat. 3And he said to me, “Son of man, feed your belly with this scroll that I give you and fill your stomach with it.” Then I ate it, and it was in my mouth as sweet as honey.
4         And he said to me, “Son of man, go to the house of Israel and speak with my words to them. 5For you are not sent to a people of foreign speech and a hard language, but to the house of Israel—6not to many peoples of foreign speech and a hard language, whose words you cannot understand. Surely, if I sent you to such, they would listen to you. 7But the house of Israel will not be willing to listen to you, for they are not willing to listen to me: because all the house of Israel have a hard forehead and a stubborn heart. 8Behold, I have made your face as hard as their faces, and your forehead as hard as their foreheads. 9Like emery harder than flint have I made your forehead. Fear them not, nor be dismayed at their looks, for they are a rebellious house.” 10Moreover, he said to me, “Son of man, all my words that I shall speak to you receive in your heart, and hear with your ears. 11And go to the exiles, to your people, and speak to them and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God,’ whether they hear or refuse to hear.”

Ephesians 4:7-16
7         But grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of Christ's gift. 8Therefore it says,

          “When he ascended on high he led a host of captives,
                   and he gave gifts to men.”

9         (In saying, “He ascended,” what does it mean but that he had also descended into the lower regions, the earth? 10He who descended is the one who also ascended far above all the heavens, that he might fill all things.) 11And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, 12to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, 13until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, 14so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. 15Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, 16from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.

Matthew 9:9-13
9         As Jesus passed on from there, he saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax booth, and he said to him, “Follow me.” And he rose and followed him.
10        And as Jesus reclined at table in the house, behold, many tax collectors and sinners came and were reclining with Jesus and his disciples. 11And when the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” 12But when he heard it, he said, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. 13Go and learn what this means, ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.’ For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.”

Some Quick Notes:

  • Church Council meets Sunday  

  • October newsletter information is due Sunday.   

Well, I pray we will see you Sunday morning.

Blessings in Christ,
Pastor John Rickert

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