Second Sunday in Advent (Populus Zion)—10 December 2017

5212053Our text is from today’s Gospel (Luke 21:25–36): 25 [Jesus said:]  “There will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and on the earth distress of nations in perplexity because of the roaring of the sea and the waves, 26 people fainting with fear and with foreboding of what is coming on the world. For the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 27 And then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. 28 Now when these things begin to take place, straighten up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”

29 And he told them a parable: “Look at the fig tree, and all the trees. 30 As soon as they come out in leaf, you see for yourselves and know that the summer is already near. 31 So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that the kingdom of God is near. 32 Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all has taken place. 33 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.

34 “But watch yourselves lest your hearts be weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and cares of this life, and that day come upon you suddenly like a trap.  35 For it will come upon all who dwell on the face of the whole earth. 36 But stay awake at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are going to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.”  (ESV)

And also from today’s Epistle (Romans 15:13): 13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.

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Last Sunday of the Church Year—26 November 2017

5212053Our text is today’s Gospel:  1 [Jesus said:] “Then the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. 2 Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. 3 For when the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them, 4 but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps. 5 As the bridegroom was delayed, they all became drowsy and slept. 6 But at midnight there was a cry, ‘Here is the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.’ 7 Then all those virgins rose and trimmed their lamps. 8 And the foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ 9 But the wise answered, saying, ‘Since there will not be enough for us and for you, go rather to the dealers and buy for yourselves.’ 10 And while they were going to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast, and the door was shut. 11 Afterward the other virgins came also, saying, ‘Lord, lord, open to us.’ 12 But he answered, ‘Truly, I say to you, I do not know you.’ 13 Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour.”  (ESV)

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23rd Sunday after Trinity—19 November 2017

5212053Our text is today’s Epistle:  17 Brothers, join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us.  18 For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ.  19 Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things.  20 But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ,  21 who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself. (ESV)

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22nd Sunday after Trinity—12 November 2017

5212053Our text is today’s Gospel:   21 Then Peter came up and said to [Jesus], “Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?”  22 Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy times seven. 23 “Therefore the kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who wished to settle accounts with his servants. 24 When he began to settle, one was brought to him who owed him ten thousand talents. 25 And since he could not pay, his master ordered him to be sold, with his wife and children and all that he had, and payment to be made. 26 So the servant fell on his knees, imploring him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you everything.’ 27 And out of pity for him, the master of that servant released him and forgave him the debt. 28 But when that same servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii, and seizing him, he began to choke him, saying, ‘Pay what you owe.’ 29 So his fellow servant fell down and pleaded with him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you.’ 30 He refused and went and put him in prison until he should pay the debt. 31 When his fellow servants saw what had taken place, they were greatly distressed, and they went and reported to their master all that had taken place. 32 Then his master summoned him and said to him, ‘You wicked servant! I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me. 33 And should not you have had mercy on your fellow servant, as I had mercy on you?’ 34 And in anger his master delivered him to the jailers, until he should pay all his debt. 35 So also my heavenly Father will do to every one of you, if you do not forgive your brother from your heart.”  (ESV)

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Festival of All Saints—5 November 2017

5212053Our text is today’s lesson from Revelation:   9 After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands,  10 and crying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!”  11 And all the angels were standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures, and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshiped God,  12 saying, “Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might be to our God forever and ever! Amen.” 

13 Then one of the elders addressed me, saying, “Who are these, clothed in white robes, and from where have they come?”  14 I said to him, “Sir, you know.” And he said to me, “These are the ones coming out of the great tribulation. They have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.  15  Therefore they are before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple; and he who sits on the throne will shelter them with his presence.  16  They shall hunger no more, neither thirst anymore; the sun shall not strike them, nor any scorching heat.  17  For the Lamb in the midst of the throne will be their shepherd, and he will guide them to springs of living water, and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.” (ESV)

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Festival of the Reformation—29 October 2017

5212053Our text is today’s lesson from Revelation (Revelation 14:6–7): 6 Then I saw another angel flying directly overhead, with an eternal gospel to proclaim to those who dwell on earth, to every nation and tribe and language and people.  7 And he said with a loud voice, “Fear God and give him glory, because the hour of his judgment has come, and worship him who made heaven and earth, the sea and the springs of water.” (ESV)

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19th Sunday after Trinity—22 October 2017

5212053Genesis 28:10–17

10 Jacob left Beersheba and went toward Haran.  11 And he came to a certain place and stayed there that night, because the sun had set. Taking one of the stones of the place, he put it under his head and lay down in that place to sleep.  12 And he dreamed, and behold, there was a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven. And behold, the angels of God were ascending and descending on it!  13 And behold, the LORD stood above it and said, “I am the LORD, the God of Abraham your father and the God of Isaac. The land on which you lie I will give to you and to your offspring.  14 Your offspring shall be like the dust of the earth, and you shall spread abroad to the west and to the east and to the north and to the south, and in you and your offspring shall all the families of the earth be blessed.  15 Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land. For I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.”  16 Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, “Surely the LORD is in this place, and I did not know it.”  17 And he was afraid and said, “How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.

Ephesians 4:22–28

22 Put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires,  23 and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds,  24 and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness. 

25 Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.  26 Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger,  27 and give no opportunity to the devil.  28 Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.

Matthew 9:1–8

1 Getting into a boat [Jesus] crossed over and came to his own city.  2 And behold, some people brought to him a paralytic, lying on a bed. And when Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Take heart, my son; your sins are forgiven.”  3 And behold, some of the scribes said to themselves, “This man is blaspheming.”  4 But Jesus, knowing their thoughts, said, “Why do you think evil in your hearts? 5 For which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Rise and walk’? 6 But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins”—he then said to the paralytic—“Rise, pick up your bed and go home.”  7 And he rose and went home.  8 When the crowds saw it, they were afraid, and they glorified God, who had given such authority to men.

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16th Sunday after Trinity

5212053Ephesians 3:13–21

13 So I ask you not to lose heart over what I am suffering for you, which is your glory.  14 For this reason I bow my knees before the Father,  15 from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named,  16 that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being,  17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love,  18 may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth,  19 and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.  20 Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us,  21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen. (ESV)

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