Monday of Holy Week
March 30, 2015
The Lord be with you
We have a very full week, worship service wise. Each service has a special liturgy. If I were to post everything about them, this notice would far longer than anyone would care to read. So I will simply provide some bare bones information, which will include the synopsis of the assigned lections that is provided by the Synod.
MAUNDY (HOLY) THURSDAY
(April 2, 2015)
Maundy Thursday, which commemorates the establishing of the Lord’s Supper, will be a communion service. The service ends with a traditional stripping of the altar. There are options for each of the lessons and the underlined passage is the one we will use. The worship service begins at 7:00 pm.
Exodus 24:3–11 or Exodus 12:1–14
1 Corinthians 10:16–17 or 1 Corinthians 11:23–32
Mark 14:12–26 or John 13:1–17, 31b–35
Let Us Love One Another, as Christ Has Loved Us and Loves Us to the End
“The Lord’s Passover” (Ex. 12:11) and “the blood of the covenant” at Mount Sinai (Ex. 24:8) are preeminent types of the Lord’s Supper. The blood of Christ, the Lamb of God, now covers us, and we keep His Supper “as a feast to the Lord” (Ex. 12:13–14). In Him, we see “the God of Israel” (Ex. 24:10), and yet He does not lay His hand on us to punish us. As disciples of Jesus, we recline at the table with Him to eat and drink in peace (Mark 14:18). The apostles, who received the New Testament in His blood “on the night when he was betrayed,” delivered the same to His Church, which we also now receive in remembrance of Him (1 Cor. 11:23–26; Mark 14:22–25). So He has “loved his own who were in the world,” and He loves us “to the end” (John 13:1). As He thus feeds us in love, let us love one another, just as He has loved us (John 13:34). For “we who are many are one body” because “we all partake of the one bread,” which is the body of Christ (1 Cor. 10:17).
(April 3, 2015)
Good Friday commemorates the day Jesus died and was buried. Originally the name for this day may have been “God’s Friday” but is certainly also “good” because of the good gifts Christ won for us on this day. We will remember this day with a service that blends the traditional “main” service for Good Friday with a Tenebrae (darkness) service. The Gospel lesson has a long and a short option. As indicated by the underlining, we will use the “short” option. The worship service begins at 7:00 pm.
Hebrews 4:14–16; 5:7–9
John 18:1—19:42 or John 19:17–30
Behold the Lamb of God, Who Takes Away the Sin of the World
Jesus, the Lamb of God, is led to the slaughter of His cross as the Sacrifice of Atonement for the sin of the world. “Despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief” (Is. 53:3), He is the righteous Servant who justifies many by His innocent suffering and death. He bears our griefs and sorrows; He is wounded for our transgressions; He is crushed for our iniquities; He suffers our chastisement; “and with his wounds we are healed” (Is. 53:4–5). As the Son of God, He fulfills the Law for us in human flesh, and so fulfills the Scriptures (John 19:7, 24). In perfect faith and faithfulness, He shares all our weaknesses and temptations, “yet without sin” (Heb. 4:15). As our merciful High Priest, He brings us to the Father in peace, “makes intercession for the transgressors” (Is. 53:12) and joins our prayers to His own, so that we are heard “because of his reverence” (Heb. 5:7). From His cross, He gives us His Spirit (John 19:30), washes us with water from His side and covers us with His blood (John 19:34).
(April 4, 2015)
Holy Saturday commemorates the day Jesus lay in the tomb. We will recognize the day with our Stations of the Cross service, held outside in our yard at noon. If it is raining we will have to cancel.
We also join our sister LC-MS congregations in a “Great Easter Vigil” service at Good Shepherd in Greenville (1601 N. Pleasantburg Ave). This service is saturated with readings from the Scriptures, most from the Old Testament. They are “types” of which Jesus is the “antitype.” The congregation is expected to ponder the readings and ask themselves, “How does this point to Jesus?” The service begins at 7:00 pm with the lighting of the “new fire” and a candlelight processional as the congregation moves into the sanctuary.
(April 5, 2015)
Easter, or more liturgically proper, The Resurrection of Our Lord, obviously celebrates our Lord’s victory of death and the grave. This will be a communion service. The morning begins with breakfast at 9:00 am. Worship will be at 10:30.
1 Corinthians 15:1–11
The Risen Christ Has Swallowed Up Death Forever!
The entire fallen world is veiled in a funeral shroud “that is spread over all nations” and “cast over all peoples” (Is. 25:7). But the Lord of hosts, in the Person of the incarnate Son, Jesus Christ, has removed that terrible pall and swallowed up death forever. By submitting Himself to death, He burst it apart from the inside out. Now He wipes away all tears from our faces, and He invites us to “be glad and rejoice in his salvation” (Is. 25:9). His body and His blood, crucified and risen, are given and poured out for us as a feast “of rich food full of marrow, of aged wine well refined” (Is. 25:6). We enter that feast through Holy Baptism, whereby our old man is buried with Jesus Christ, and we are raised up in Him, “dressed in a white robe” of His perfect righteousness (Mark 16:5). What St. Paul and the other apostles received “by the grace of God” is also “delivered to you” by the preaching of Christ, “in which you stand, and by which you are being saved” (1 Cor. 15:1–11).
I hope you will join us for these special, only once-a-year, worship opportunities.
He is Risen!
He is Risen, Indeed!!!
Pastor John Rickert