Thursday, November 5, 2015

Worship Notes for Pentecost 24, 2015

Thursday after All Saints’ Day
November 5, 2015

The Lord be with you.

This coming Sunday is the Twenty fourth Sunday after Pentecost. It is also the Commemoration of Johannes von Staupitz, Luther’s Father Confessor. (Click on his name to go to a post concerning him made in 2012.) As with all other commemorations in our lectionary series, there are no special Scripture lessons assigned for the day. The idea behind all commemorations in our lectionary series is to encourage the members of the LC-MS to investigate and learn more about some of the important saints and events in Church history.

The assigned readings for Pentecost 24 are Psalm 146;1 Kings 17:8-16; Hebrews 9:24-28; and Mark 12:38-44. You will notice a strong “end-times” theme in the readings. The theological term for “end-times” themes is eschatology. The final three Sundays of the Church Year are traditionally reserved for eschatology. As such they are kind of like a mini-season in the Church Year. In some Liturgical Calendars this is recognized by giving them the names “Third-Last Sunday of the Church Year;” “Second-Last Sunday of the Church Year;” and “Last Sunday of the Church Year.” Our calendar has retained only the name “Last Sunday of the Church Year,” which will be November 22.

For our liturgy Sunday we will use Matins (LSB page 219). As readers of this blog know, Matins is one of the “Prayer Hours” developed in the monasteries during the Middle Ages. Every main LC-MS hymnal has retained both Matins and Vespers from this tradition. Other Prayer Hours have been included from time to time. LSB has included Compline as well as two services that are adaptations from these Prayer Hours, “Morning Prayer” (page 235) and “Evening Prayer” (page 243). Each of these services accents the Word of God, giving over more time for its reading, singing, and exposition, than the “Divine Service.” The “Divine Service” includes the Lord’s Supper and so less time for the spoken and sung word. Therefore, when we use Matins we use the appointed Psalm for the Day instead of the shorter Introit for the Day.

One of the things I like about using the Psalm for the Day is that it gives me another Scripture lesson to consider as I prepare the message for Sunday. Such was the case this week. The text for the sermon is Psalm 146:5, and the sermon deals primarily with Psalm 146. The sermon title is “Man Proposes but God Disposes.”

Our opening hymn will be “Who Trusts in God a Strong Abode” (LSB 714). Our sermon hymn will be “I Leave All Things to God’s Direction” (LSB 719). Our closing hymn will be “Children of the Heavenly Father” (LSB 725).

Below is a video of our opening hymn, “Who Trusts in God A Strong Abode.” It includes only the organ with no singing. Following the video I’ve included the words, so you can sing along if you want.

“Who Trusts in God a Strong Abode” LSB 714
Text: Joachim Magdeburg, c. 1525-after 1587

Who trusts in God
A strong abode
In heav’n and earth possesses;
Who looks in love
To Christ above,
No fear that heart oppresses.
In You alone,
Dear Lord, we own
Sweet hope and consolation,
Our shield from foes,
Our balm for woes,
Our great and sure salvation.

Though Satan’s wrath
Beset our path
And worldly scorn assail us,
While You are near,
We shall not fear;
Your strength will never fail us.
Your rod and staff
Will keep us safe
And guide our steps for ever;
Nor shades of death
Nor hell beneath
Our lives from You will sever.

In all the strife
Of mortal life
Our feet will stand securely;
Temptation’s hour
Will lose its pow’r,
For You will guard us surely.
O God, renew
With heav’nly dew
Our body, soul, and spirit
Until we stand
At Your right hand
Through Jesus’ saving merit.

During our prayers we will remember The Lutheran Church - Hong Kong Synod, Mt. Olive Lutheran, Irmo, and the witness of Johannes von Staupitz.

Our adult Bible class continues with the study, Word: God Speaks to Us. Though you may have missed the class up to this point, you are still encouraged to attend. What you learn will be a blessing. The Bible study hour begins at 9:00 am. Fill free to bring children. Class is provided for them as well.  

What follows is a synopsis of Sunday’s lessons, provided by the synod, then the lessons.  As always, the synopsis does not include any references to the appointed Psalm as those who put this together assume everyone celebrates the Lord’s Supper every Sunday and therefore never use the appointed Psalm.

The Lord Freely Feeds and Provides for Us with Everything He Has
Those who contribute “large sums” from “out of their abundance” have done very little. They cannot purchase God’s favor with their money. But the “poor widow” with her two small coins, who “out of her poverty has put in everything she had,” entrusts herself and her life to the mercy of God (Mark 12:41–44). Such faith is not disappointed, for the Lord is faithful, and He provides for His people by His grace. Thus was the poor widow of Zarephath able to feed the prophet Elijah “for many days,” as well as herself and her household, “according to the word of the Lord that he spoke by Elijah” (1 Kings 17:15–16). He feeds us, too, by His Word, not only with daily bread for this body and life, but unto the life everlasting in Christ Jesus. “By the sacrifice of himself,” by the giving of His body and life and all that He had, He has entered “into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf” (Heb. 9:24–26). He is our great High Priest and the Temple of God, as well as the priestly food with which He feeds us.

Psalm 146 (9)
1           Praise the Lord!
            Praise the Lord, O my soul!
2           I will praise the Lord as long as I live;
                        I will sing praises to my God while I have my being.

2           Put not your trust in princes,
                        in a son of man, in whom there is no salvation.
4           When his breath departs, he returns to the earth;
                        on that very day his plans perish.

5           Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob,
                        whose hope is in the Lord his God,
6           who made heaven and earth,
                        the sea, and all that is in them,
7           who keeps faith forever;
                        who executes justice for the oppressed,
                        who gives food to the hungry.

            The Lord sets the prisoners free;
8                       the Lord opens the eyes of the blind.
            The Lord lifts up those who are bowed down;
                        the Lord loves the righteous.
9           The Lord watches over the sojourners;
                        he upholds the widow and the fatherless,
                        but the way of the wicked he brings to ruin.

10          The Lord will reign forever,
                        your God, O Zion, to all generations.
            Praise the Lord!

1 Kings 17:8-16
8           Then the word of the Lord came to him, 9“Arise, go to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon, and dwell there. Behold, I have commanded a widow there to feed you.” 10So he arose and went to Zarephath. And when he came to the gate of the city, behold, a widow was there gathering sticks. And he called to her and said, “Bring me a little water in a vessel, that I may drink.” 11And as she was going to bring it, he called to her and said, “Bring me a morsel of bread in your hand.” 12And she said, “As the Lord your God lives, I have nothing baked, only a handful of flour in a jar and a little oil in a jug. And now I am gathering a couple of sticks that I may go in and prepare it for myself and my son, that we may eat it and die.” 13And Elijah said to her, “Do not fear; go and do as you have said. But first make me a little cake of it and bring it to me, and afterward make something for yourself and your son. 14For thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, ‘The jar of flour shall not be spent, and the jug of oil shall not be empty, until the day that the Lord sends rain upon the earth.’” 15And she went and did as Elijah said. And she and he and her household ate for many days. 16The jar of flour was not spent, neither did the jug of oil become empty, according to the word of the Lord that he spoke by Elijah.

Hebrews 9:24-28
24          For Christ has entered, not into holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true things, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf. 25Nor was it to offer himself repeatedly, as the high priest enters the holy places every year with blood not his own, 26for then he would have had to suffer repeatedly since the foundation of the world. But as it is, he has appeared once for all at the end of the ages to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. 27And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment, 28so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.

Mark 12:38-44
38          And in his teaching he said, “Beware of the scribes, who like to walk around in long robes and like greetings in the marketplaces 39and have the best seats in the synagogues and the places of honor at feasts, 40who devour widows' houses and for a pretense make long prayers. They will receive the greater condemnation.”
41          And he sat down opposite the treasury and watched the people putting money into the offering box. Many rich people put in large sums. 42And a poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, which make a penny. 43And he called his disciples to him and said to them, “Truly, I say to you, this poor widow has put in more than all those who are contributing to the offering box. 44For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty has put in everything she had, all she had to live on.”

Some Additional Notes

  • The “ingathering” at the recent LWML Fall Rally, which was at Lamb of God, was for Bethlehem Center. At that time the ladies not only gave to the director of Bethlehem Center the items they brought to the rally, but also the coats we gathered. So, I guess, that wraps up our Second Coat Drive. However, if you still wish to donate a coat, I expect the ladies of the LWML will be happy to deliver them. (Follow the link to pictures of the LWML Fall rally.)
  • There will be one last Women’s Bible Fellowship led by pastor. It will be Wednesday, November 11. We are considering the theology behind some favorite hymns.
  • Keep Praying for your Neighbors and Walking your Neighborhoods.
  • Don’t forget to check out the other posts from earlier this week. An easy way to review the titles is by looking at the left hand side of this blog. If a title catches your attention, just click on it and you will go to that post. Remember, you can link one or more of our blog posts to your facebook (or other social media) page. Find one you like and share it.
  • Pastor and Kitty have only two Sunday’s left at Lamb of God before they move to Newark, DE. We need everyone involved in the coming months to insure Lamb of God is a blessing to Spartanburg, and beyond.
Blessings in Christ,
Pastor Rickert

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