Living to Witness to the Hope
Good morning Brothers and Sisters in Christ. It is good to be with you today on this sixth Sunday of Easter as we gather together and the name of Our Risen Lord and Savior Jesus Christ to sing his praise as we worship Him in spirit and in truth. I would have you posted that it is good when we can go into the house of the Lord what a delight and that is an announcement. I'd like to make to you because of the recent decision of the Supreme Court acknowledging that the safer at home order. Well, basically that's no longer in effect mark your calendar two Sundays from today May 31st. We are going to have our first in-person worship service in Believe It or Not by that time. It'll be 10 weeks. 10 weeks and truly it will be wonderful to gather in the house of the Lord together as a group as you noticed on the slide. There are two service times list at 8:30 in the morning and 10:30 in the morning and let me just briefly explain the rationale before I get to the rationale. Let me assure you that this the place will be completely cleaned or willing workers will be activated and there are going to work hard to clean and sanitize and make sure everything is disinfected before you arrive. And when you do arrive, I encourage you all to wear a mask not for your own benefit, but for the benefit of your neighbor for love for your neighbor and keeping with the Fifth Commandment that we don't want to cause any harm to our neighbors to wear masks we can do that. That's easy. Which brings me to the 8:30 service the 8:30 service. I'm encouraging those of you who feel vulnerable that is your immune system is compromised your in the elderly category and learning that I think I'm in that category now, but hey, it's alright that's services for you. And the 10:30 service is for everyone else. We're not we're not trying to create two different camps two different tribes. We are all of the same tribe of the nation of Israel Where We Belong, but for the sake of the fifth commandment making sure that we don't allow any harm to come to our neighbor for asking you to observe this this practice for the time being 8:30 the first service for those who are feeling vulnerable vulnerable, excetera and 10:30 for everyone else. It'll be the same service in the in between time at says on the slide at 9:40, who knows what time it will be but somewhere around that area will be a fellowship hour or we where we can gather together and and share stories with one another greet one another with an elbow bump or something to that effect. We are going to be praying for good weather so we can gather outside. Battleship time wearing masks, of course so that we can just enjoy being with one another once again after at that point will be 10 weeks. Goodnight weather. So that's Sunday May 31st two Sundays from today mark your calendar. It is a joyous event and oh by the way, that's Sunday happens to be Pentecost Sunday wouldn't Chenoa the day that we observe that where God gave his promised Holy Spirit to us. And so you are all at the same time invited to wear something in the color red something red and that means something that people can see that's red. If it's red and it's hidden that doesn't count. We've got to be able to see it. So where is hunting in the color red Sunday May 31st two weeks from today along those lines. I had an enjoyable visit with the owner of the Chippewa Family Restaurant. I drove by there the other day and I found out that hey they are open. They're open for business. And so that means that our men's Gathering men and Christ. We are up. Once again. John is looking forward to seeing us on Friday morning at 6 a.m. For our men's Gathering as iron sharpens iron as we continue to discuss what it means to be a man of Christ a man of integrity according to 1st Timothy Chapter 3. So Chippewa Family Restaurant 9, I can attest that they too are practicing social distancing and all of that jazz. They are clean as plain can be I was impressed by what I saw. So men mark your calendar this coming Friday. We are back. We are back no longer have to meet over a computer. But if you would rather meet over a computer, let me know and we will figure out a way to do both. so Well, our final announcement is I want to talk about our theme for today because these are theme during these Sundays of Easter. We have been talking about living in the hope of our inheritance looking forward to our inheritance. And this slide here is a depiction of the people of Israel wandering through the Wilderness going toward the Promised Land. And that their inheritance our inheritance as well the promised land and so I pray that our Lord richly blesses you and encourages you and strengthens you in the faith this day as we journey together through this Wilderness where we are where it's full of rocks and potholes and viruses and and you named it as we journey together longing for the promised land as we go together. So I invite you to join me today as We Gather in the mighty and Powerful name of the father and of the son and of the Holy Spirit Christ is risen, he is risen indeed Alleluia, let us sing our gathering him all creatures of our God and King.
Turn on the bar.
Play Thursday Night Football.
She has gone bad.
Indeed we have much to be thankful for because in the power of Christ, we do stand and no fear should ever have its grip on us, but only the love of Christ as we think of the love of Christ and we Marvel at all that he has done for us. We are mindful of our own failings the ways in which we have sinned against him and thought word and deed and so let us pause for the Justice moment as we confess our sins before God our gracious heavenly father. Let us pray. Jesus risen master and triumphant board we come to you and sorrow for our sins and confessed to you our weakness and unbelief.
We have lived by our own strength and not by the power of your Resurrection in your mercy forgive us. Lord hear us and help us.
We have lived by the light of our own eyes as faithless and not believing in your mercy forgive us. Lord Heroes and help us we have lived for this world alone and doubted our home in heaven. And your mercy forgive us Lord Harries and help. Your friends in Christ, May the god of love and power forgive you and free you from your sins heal and strengthen You by his spirit and raise you to New Life In Christ Our Lord. Jesus says to you dear friends in Christ. Your sins are forgiven you and the name of the father and of the son and of the Holy Spirit,
Lord my God, where are you?
concert the world's my hands have made I see the stars I hear you.
the unit play something fun.
all breeds of Omaha then sings my soul.
We're through love with a Taurus flavors.
sing Sweet free
And Harry love Royal Enfield of gentle breeze.
How do you say, Georgia?
God is not nice.
10 km 2.5 scares, Fantasia
Play my dick.
every time I walk
Price shop. Wish y'all come back and take me home. Why Georgia build my art? Then I shall bow. and I already
ManBearPig my God how great thou art.
That sings Five.
I pray to God that sings All Greg.
The Lord be with you that is free.
Oh God, our gracious Heavenly Father. You are The Giver of all that is good. So why you're holding inspiration grant that we may think those things that are right? And by your merciful guiding accomplish them. We ask this through Jesus Christ our son our Lord who lives and who raised with you and the Holy Spirit one God now and forever on men. Our first reading for this sixth Sunday of Easter is recorded in the book of Acts the 17th chapter. Now wild Hall was waiting for them in Athens. His Spirit was provoked within him as he saw that the city was full of idols.
So he reasoned in the synagogue with the Jews and the devel persons and in the marketplace every day with those who happened to be then. Some of the Epicurean and stoic philosophers also converse with him and some said what does this babbler wish to say? Other said he seems to be a preacher afford divinity's because he was preaching Jesus and the resurrection. And they took him and they brought him to the Eric office saying may we know what this new teaching is that you are presenting? Were you bring some strange things to weren't yours? We wish to know there for what these things mean.
Now all the opinions and the foreigners who live there would spend their time in nothing except telling or hearing something new. So Paul standing in the midst the air gap has said many men of Athens. I perceive that in every way you are very religious. Fresno I passed along and observe the objects of your worship. I found also an altar with this inscription to the unknown God. What there for you worship is unknown? This I Proclaim to you. The God Who made the world and everything in it being Lord of Heaven and Earth does not live in temples made by my man nor is he served by human hands as though he needed anything since he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything. And he made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the Earth face of the Earth having determined a lot of periods and boundaries. other Dwelling Places that they should seek God and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him yet. He is actually not far from each one of us for in him. We live and move and have our being and even some of your own poets have said for we are indeed his offspring. Being then God's Offspring. We ought not to think that the Divine being is like gold or silver or stone and image formed by the art and Imagination of man. the times of ignorance God overlooked but now he is coming now. He commands all people everywhere to repent.
Because he has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness. Why a man whom he has appointed and of this he has given Assurance to All by raising him from the dead. This is the word of the Lord. Thanks be to God. AR pistol reading is from 1st Peter chapter 3 also our text for today.
Now who is there to harm you if you are zealous for what is good? But even if you should suffer for righteousness sake you will be blessed have no fear of them nor be trouble. But in your hearts honor Christ the lord as holy always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for the reason for the hope that is in you and do it with gentleness and respect. Having a good conscience so that when you are slandered those who revile your good behavior in price may be put to shame. Braid is better to suffer for doing good. If that should be God's will then for doing evil. For Christ also suffered once for sins the righteous for the unrighteous that he might bring us to God being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit in which he went and proclaimed to the spirits in prison because they formally did not obey when God's patience waited in the days of Noah Wyle the ark was being prepared in which a few that is eight persons or brought safely through the water. Baptism which corresponds to this now saves you not as a removal of dirt from the body, but as an appeal to God for a good conscience. Through the resurrection of Jesus Christ who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God with angels authorities and Powers having been subjected to him. This is the word of the Lord. Thanks be to God, please rise for the reading of the Gospel. Are Holy gospel for this sixth Sunday of Easter is recorded in the book of st. John the 14th chapter beginning with verse 15. Jesus speaking says if you love me you will keep my Commandments. And I will ask the father and he will give you another helper to be with you forever. Even the spirit of Truth whom the world cannot receive because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him for he dwells with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans. I will come to you. Yet a little while and the world will see me no more, but you will see me because I live you also will live. In that day, you will know that I am in the father and you and me and I in you. Whoever has my Commandments and keeps them he it is who loves me. And he who loves me Will Be Loved by my father. And I will love him and will manifest myself to him. This is the gospel of Our Lord. Thanks be to God bless Confessor, Christian. I believe in one God the Father Almighty maker of heaven and Earth and of all things visible and invisible and in one more Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God begotten of his father before all worlds God of God life of light very God of very God begotten not me being of one substance with the father by whom all things were made through for us men and for our Salvation came down from heaven and was incarnate by the Holy Spirit to the Virgin Mary and was made man and was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate. He suffered in his very good and the third day he rose again according to the scriptures and ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of the father. And he will come again with glory to judge both the living and the dead whose kingdom will have no end and I believe in the Holy Spirit the Lord The Giver of Life who perceived from the father and the son who is the father of the sun together is worship and glorify who smoke by the prophets and I believe in one holy Christian and Apostolic church. I acknowledge one baptism for the remission of sin and I look for the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come. You may be seated As we sing Our Hymn of the day?
Find real 3D.
Maranatha Maranatha Lord come quickly. Lord we log to see you face to face. To be in your presence forever. Lord we long to for you to come and finish your creation creating us a new completing your salvation. You have given us your Holy Spirit as a deposit which guarantees this inheritance? So now they're bored. We asked you to come and finish it. finish it Lord We help us to live in the hope of our inheritance we ask. While we wait for you to come dear Lord help us to witness everyone that we meet about this. Hope that we have in Christ Jesus or more. amen your friends in Christ grace to you and peace from God our Father and from Our Risen Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on them. There is an old Chinese Parable that that tells of about a man who lived with his son in an abandoned fort. One day the horse that they owned ran away a horse that they depended upon to for their livelihood their livelihood them hold vegetables to the town to the market Plum run away. His neighbor came by and said well, that's too bad. I heard about what happened and that's really sorry. That's really too bad. Well, the owner says well, how do you know that? It's bad? The worst return had brought back with it a dozen wild horses.
The neighbor said well, that's good.
The old man says we'll how do you know what's good hit because when my son tried to break those horses, he fell off and broke his leg. What was the neighbor said? Well, that's bad very very bad. The owners of the horse as well. How do you know that? It's bad? Shortly afterward a war broke out, but my son was laid up and did not have to go to the front. back and forth they would All events like these often are looked upon as hopeless situations.
We live in a time in our in our country today in our world even today were a pandemic is is a continues to to freak people out running because it's running rapid and we're often we often are tempted tempted by the devil like my dad to look at this situation as hopeless. no setback failure or loss or even suffering stands alone your friends. Let me say that again. There is no setback. No failure. No loss or suffering that stands alone by itself because always there is another chapter. Another chapter that will follow always there is a final word. And that word is God's. You see throughout his epistle Peter calls attention to suffering. But in every situation it has a good consequence. So today I want to talk with you first and foremost about a hope Revisited.
I hope Revisited. Peter used with Peter urges his readers to be prepared to be prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you. Be prepared to make a defense. The Greek word for defense is where we get the word apology. Sometimes apology is where we go to someone and say I'm sorry because we did something wrong. But the other time in which apology is used is used for this word defense. We make an apology. We make a firm apology or the Declaration or defense. To anyone who asks for the hope that we have your see we are Christians and as Christians we are God's children. Who has given us his holy spirit as a deposit to guarantee our inheritance to come. So now they're friends. We have hope and this hope is a living pope and it is given to us through the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Ellsworth St. Peter reminds us to pay attention to the word of God. Beaver just his soul to pay attention to the word of God. He says someone chapter to go back and read it later. Pay attention to the word of God that by it. You may grow up in your salvation. You see hope is capital i. As we meditate upon the word. You see all simple also says in Romans 15 that everything that was written in the past time was written to teach us so that through endurance and encouragement of scriptures. We might have hope the things that we have in scripture all of it from Genesis chapter 1 verse 1 the Revelation chapter 22 Through revelation 22 is designed to give us hope you see in the Bible. We see again and again and again that God will not give up even when the situation seems hopeless. And that is especially true today dear friends in Christ. God will not give up. Especially if we see the situation is being hopeless. Show me the 800 years before Christ. There was a prophet named named Hosea. And Jose is famous because he bought purchased a faithless wife from her lovers. And he paid the price of a Slave. And Hosea loved her to death. He tried to bring her to bring her back. He tried to help her understand love and patience unconditional love and patience. And his way with her is typified typified by God's dealings with the Wayward nation of Israel. He says I am now going to Allure her. I am going to speak tenderly to her. I will give her back her Vineyards and we'll make the valley of achor a Door of Hope.
Still he seems to waver between punishing and forgiving his chosen people.
What was the match was the same with with Hosea?
You change the waiver. Later on in chapter 4 he says Ephraim which is the name for Israel is joined to Idols let him alone.
And you we think it's all over but then later on God says in chapter 11 it is I who taught Ephraim to walk taking them by the arms? How can I give you a few premium for I am God, not man. What's better? What's better? Picture dear friends in Christ is found.
About the heart of God In this passage. Hello.
Israel had wandered off to chase After idols the horror After idols just like just like hosea's wife, but God loved her. God loves you and he loves me and he loves all the people of the world what better picture of the heart of God can there be than this? We are prepared your friends in Christ to make a defense for the hope that we have. And we are to do it with gentleness with respect. Peter had learned that the hard way that that words harshly spoken, even if it were true often times turn people off. But beside the witness of words, it is evident that the witness of our lifestyle. Is also effective and necessary. The witness of our lifestyle is effective and necessary. I made mention during the announcements that when we come back together for the sake of the fifth commandment to ensure that no harm comes to anyone. That we all Dawn a mask. We may not think we needed. We may even think it's silly doesn't matter what we think. What matters is our neighbors love her our neighbor? And so we display a witness when we when we do things we put on a positive front when we do things for the benefit of others. What are the finest example that's one point example, another example of this is the advice that Paul gives two or excuse me. Peter gets the Christian women just earlier in our text today to chapter three women who are married to pagans. He said be submissive to your husband so that if any of them do not believe the word they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives when they see Purity and rubber of your lives. I just defend just in case you think he's singling women out. He also goes to the husband and chapter 3 verse 7 says in the same way that husbands are to be considered as they live with their wives that treating them as a weaker vessel with respect and as Heirs of God with you.
They will know we are Christians by our love the old song of the 70s used to say. She even went out with our civil rulers. We think we may think our civil rulers or nuts are elected leaders that yet. The Lord tells us that we need to submit ourselves for the Lord saved every Authority instituted among men whether to a King as supreme authority or the governor's for it is God's will that by doing good you should silence ignorant and foolish man, and when we do that we adhere to the fourth Commandment. You see what's happening or we're living we're living in love for our for our neighbor by wearing a mask by washing her hands using sanitizers keeping all the social distancing things that some think I know personally some we think this is craziness. But there are those who don't think it is. So those same people who think that it is essential therefore for their sake it is essential and then we live by the fourth Commandment while while we honor those are those elected leaders who have been placed in authority over us.
Peter says be prepared be prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for the reason for the hope that is in you. Not only this he tells us about the reason for the hope that we have. You see repeating that Christ died once for all the righteousness for the unrighteous Peter gives us our reason for the hope that we have. Are ancient Creed's Echo this he descended into hell to Proclaim victory. Gyros Graham from the he ascended into heaven and he sits at God's right hand to rule over all things. Many fine movies have been made depicting The Life of Christ with all the drama that can be produced in the day Unfortunately, they usually end at his crucifixion and nothing more. We might even find it difficult to relate to our Lord's exaltation that he was born that he ate and drank and that then he suffered pain and these humans experience, you know, we we might be able to identify with but the thing that we can't identify with is his to set his Ascension and being at God's right hand because those things are not part of our experience. Yeah, it is important that we consider each of these steps or stages of exaltation. If we are to Bear witness, if we are to make a defense for the hope that we have you see Christ did not descend into hell to give those who died in unbelief another chance. Not at all. He descended into hell to Proclaim his victory he descended into hell to say where you heard about long ago when scripture has come through Not necessarily to say nah. Nah. Nah nah nah I was right you were wrong. But to say that I am King. I am the Lord. And they were about to him still want to suffer the consequences for their sin. Therefore dear friends are witness is just as urgent. And the reason why I say that and I mean it sincerely it is urgent because you may be the only person that a question or will hear the good news from
You may be the only person that you connect won't you will come and go think that someone will come in contact with before they died from where they can hear the good news.
So your witness is urgent. You see Our Saviors Ascension into heaven is linked to is visible return for every eye will see him. That he rules over everything in Heaven and Earth Asher's us that even as his kingdom of glory and power is real. So also is his kingdom of Grace. My word is says who the prophet Isaiah my word will not return to me empty, but it will achieve it will accomplish the purpose for which I sent.
Your friends in Christ because God works through his word. We can be effective Witnesses. To the hope that we have. Absolutely positively can be affected witnesses to the hope that we have all over the moment. It seems to produce a few results. But because of God, we have the last word and will not give up. Years ago there was a an author of who wrote a bunch of novels. His name was Joseph Conrad and is considered probably one of the greatest novelist and the English speaking language and he wrote a book called typhoon. It's an epic story of the sea. And it and it furnishes us with a picture of this very thing. Winds and waves are pounding around this boat to the ship. That's it scene water splashing into the ship is going to see and as the shaler's Sandler shouts to the cap. The boats are going or going now, sir. He says that is the Lifeboat the bullets are going now. And again and again, he hears a voice. In the book says here with penetrating effect of quietness in the enormous Discord of noises as if sent out from some remote spot of Peace Beyond a black waste of the Gale. The boys said, all right. The ship's the boats are going out and he says alright, okay.
Through the turmoil that threatens us. Is the fears that we have fear does not come from God your friends. Fear comes from the enemy because the enemy wants to toss to take our eyes off of our Lord. Go through the turmoil that threatens us that threatens our safety the safety of all his disciples.
Even if you think about the disciples upon the tiny this tiny boat on the Sea of Galilee. Were they in Revere their faith was tested genuinely? And This Storm still threatens us even today during this pandemic. comes the voice of the one who conquered all he says this take courage. take courage it is I God is with us he is with you. And this is the witness. This is the witness that we are to bear. This is the hope that we have. This is the joy that we enjoy one with another. May God richly bless you and encourage you and strengthen you in the face and the name of the father and of the son and of the holy spirit all day.
Restore unto me the joy creation full free.
Today is we pray. I'm going to offer petitions in a topical form.
Topical form and some fun fit in a way that we may not be a custom. But at the end of each petition, I'm going to conclude with let us break of the Lord and at that point I a can bite you to pause for a moment so that you can have a moment of reflection. Then say Lord have mercy. So now let us pray for the whole people of God in Christ Jesus and for all people according to their needs. You pray for the faithful proclamation of Jesus Christ to those that do not know him. That through hearing the word of our Lord and words indeed. Many may be brought to Faith until the knowledge of the truth. Let us pray to the Lord.
Lord have mercy for the Church of God here and everywhere that all who confess Jesus Christ maybe United in Doctrine and Witness. Defend it against all the assaults of the enemy and eager to gather together around your word and Sacrament and love for one another. Let us pray for the Lord.
Lord have mercy for Christ Lutheran Church, and for the work of the kingdom in the Chippewa Valley and for the resources to accomplish all that God desires that his name may be glorified Among Us and his purpose fulfilled in our words and works. Let us pray to the Lord.
Lord have mercy to the agencies in institutions through which we love our neighbor and provide for those in need. For the destitute and homeless. And for everyone who suffers unemployment and underemployment. That we may Aid them in their needs and assist them to find honorable labor to supply all their needs. Let us pray to the Lord.
Lord have mercy for the lonely those who suffer the burdens of life without friendship and family those who are depressed. weary of endemic measures For The Fellowship of the church. And we may bear one another's burdens and living community with Christ is our head. Let us pray to the Lord.
Lord have mercy
For the sake and for those who suffer. That you would grant them healing to their body Feast of their minds. Consolation in their grief some Sorrows for those were mourning the death of loved one in particular dear Lord. We pray for talitha. She Mourns the death of her sister, Let us pray to the Lord.
Lord in your mercy for the love of God leave things that we made the light in God's word and walk in his ways and for the spirit that we may be lead into all truth and kept from Aaron. Let us pray to the Lord. Lord have mercy for this nation Imports leaders born into this pandemic fur peace among nations and for an end of Terror and violence that we may work for the common good so that Justice may prevail life be protected and truth about let us pray to the Lord. Lord have mercy
the Lord our God As we recall the obedient life and Life Giving death of your son for our Salvation. We prayed for you to strengthen our faith and to make our hearts bold. That we may not fear, but address our prayers to you and all that you bility. Hear us on behalf of Jesus Christ Our great high priest who even now stands before you on our behalf pleading our were causes with his own blood until that day when we are delivered from the changes and chances of this Mortal life and stand before you and Heaven through Jesus Christ Our Lord.
And now may the Lord bless you and keep you may the Lord make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you. May the Lord look upon you with favor and Grant you his. Peace.
Let us sing our sending him.
Play Main Street.