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Psalm 95 – There’s a Psalm for This

Sometimes the Christian life is an interesting balance between what we in our Lutheran tradition calls “Law and Gospel”. The Law is meant to curb, keeping the sinful nature in check; mirror, showing us what the perfect reflection of God’s image is and showing us how we have sinned; and guide, showing the follower of Jesus how to live a Christ-centered life. The Gospel, the good news of God, the divine promise of grace, forgiveness of sins, and abundant life. Sometimes this differences is described as, “The Law shows us what to do, and the Gospel tells us what God has already done”. Or other times, and this is one I’m not a fan of, the Law gets called the “bad news” and the Gospel is the “good news”. (I think that’s an oversimplification, but it’s maybe generally correct even if wrong when you look at it more deeply.)

Psalm 95 gives us a picture of Law and Gospel, where the first half of the Psalm talks about the Gospel and the second half is an expression of God’s Law.

Psalm95(CEB)

Come, let’s sing out loud to the Lord!
Let’s raise a joyful shout to the rock of our salvation!
Let’s come before him with thanks! Let’s shout songs of joy to him!
The Lord is a great God, the great king over all other gods.
The earth’s depths are in his hands; the mountain heights belong to him;
the sea, which he made, is his
along with the dry ground, which his own hands formed.
Come, let’s worship and bow down! Let’s kneel before the Lord, our maker!
He is our God, and we are the people of his pasture, the sheep in his hands.

If only you would listen to his voice right now!
“Don’t harden your hearts like you did at Meribah,
like you did when you were at Massah, in the wilderness,
when your ancestors tested me and scrutinized me,
even though they had already seen my acts.
For forty years I despised that generation;
I said, ‘These people have twisted hearts. They don’t know my ways.’
So in anger I swore: ‘They will never enter my place of rest!’”

Psalm 95 (CEB)

In the first half, we hear about all the great works of God – being king over other gods, making the whole world – and worship God for God calling us his people: it’s Gospel. But then the tone shifts, “Don’t harden your hearts” like in these two stories from the Exodus and the Wandering in the Wilderness. It didn’t go well for them and it won’t go well for you! That’s the Law. It’s a call for us to repent, having seen how we haven’t matched the image of God.

That’s why we hold these two ideas in tension. Law and Gospel together lead us into a deeper relationship to the one who both calls us to action and reminds us of the actions are already done by Jesus Christ.

Pastor Mike

17th Sunday after Pentecost

0:00 Prelude
3:45 Welcome & Announcements
6:25 Confession & Forgiveness
8:38 Opening Hymn – Glory to God Forever
11:53 Greeting, Kyrie, and Prayer of the Day
13:20 Lesson – Genesis 15:1-6
14:27 Gospel – Luke 3:1-14
17:05 Homily – God’s Promise to Abraham
31:22 Hymn of the Day – The Stand
35:29 Apostles’ Creed & Offertory Prayer & Prayers of the Church
38:34 Holy Communion
44:55 Closing Hymn – The God of Abraham Praise
48:40 Dismissal & Postlude

We are in the Season after Pentecost, when we are shaped by the Holy Spirit to learn and grow as followers of Jesus Christ. Our readings begin with creation and progress through the prophets, telling us the story of God’s people prior to the coming of the Messiah. Our paraments are green to reflect our growth as disciples of Jesus.

Music is covered by one of these licenses:
Reprinted and streamed with permission under ONE LICENSE # A-731472. All rights reserved.
Used by Permission. CCLI License #11287363 and CCLI Streaming License #20327355

16th Sunday after Pentecost

0:00 Prelude
3:55 Welcome & Announcements
6:09 Confession & Forgiveness
7:54 Opening Hymn – For the Beauty of the Earth
11:07 Greeting, Kyrie, and Prayer of the Day
12:35 Lesson – Genesis 2:4-7,15-17, 3:1-8
14:42 Gospel – Luke 11:1-13
17:14 Homily – Creation and Fall
39:45 Hymn of the Day – Put in Me
44:07 Apostles’ Creed & Offertory Prayer & Prayers of the Church
47:32 Holy Communion
53:23 Closing Hymn – Let All Things Now Living
55:43 Dismissal & Postlude

We are in the Season after Pentecost, when we are shaped by the Holy Spirit to learn and grow as followers of Jesus Christ. Our readings begin with creation and progress through the prophets, telling us the story of God’s people prior to the coming of the Messiah. Our paraments are green to reflect our growth as disciples of Jesus.

Music is covered by one of these licenses:
Reprinted and streamed with permission under ONE LICENSE # A-731472. All rights reserved.
Used by Permission. CCLI License #11287363 and CCLI Streaming License #20327355

Holy Cross Sunday

0:00 Prelude
6:26 Welcome & Announcements
9:27 Confession & Forgiveness
11:12 Opening Hymn – Lift High the Cross
15:19 Greeting, Kyrie, and Prayer of the Day
16:44 Lesson – 1 Corinthians 1:18-25
17:58 Gospel – Luke 9:18-27
19:54 Homily – God’s Promises Made Visible
33:07 Hymn of the Day – King of Kings
37:20 Apostles’ Creed & Offertory Prayer & Prayers of the Church
40:37 Holy Communion
48:14 Closing Hymn – Living Hope
53:15 Dismissal & Postlude

Today is Holy Cross Sunday. We celebrate this feast day commemorating the semi-legendary arrival of pieces of the true cross to Constantinople because it is this congregation’s name day! Today we remember that, on the cross, God revealed his loving nature to humanity. Our paraments are red to remind us of the blood of Christ, shed for us.

Music is covered by one of these licenses:
Reprinted and streamed with permission under ONE LICENSE # A-731472. All rights reserved.
Used by Permission. CCLI License #11287363 and CCLI Streaming License #20327355

14th Sunday after Pentecost

0:00 Prelude
4:28 Welcome & Announcements
8:03 Confession & Forgiveness
9:55 Opening Hymn – Oh, Love, How Deep
12:09 Greeting, Kyrie, and Prayer of the Day
13:24 Lesson – 2 Corinthians 8: 1-15
15:26 Gospel – John 13: 31-35
16:45 Homily – 2 Corinthians: Part 5
32:10 Hymn of the Day – Take My Life, that I May Be
34:14 Apostles’ Creed & Offertory Prayer & Prayers of the Church
37:22 Holy Communion
44:25 Closing Hymn – 10,000 Reasons
48:14 Dismissal & Postlude

We are in the Season after Pentecost, when we are shaped by the Holy Spirit to learn and grow as followers of Jesus Christ. During this time, the narrative lectionary contains “mini-series” on various topics. This year we have series on the Lord’s Prayer, Job, and 2 Corinthians. Our paraments are green to reflect our growth as disciples of Jesus.

Music is covered by one of these licenses:
Reprinted and streamed with permission under ONE LICENSE # A-731472. All rights reserved.
Used by Permission. CCLI License #11287363 and CCLI Streaming License #20327355

13th Sunday after Pentecost

There were some audio problems this week that I didn’t notice until listening back to it. My apologies; it’ll be fixed for next week.

0:00 Prelude
1:32 Welcome & Announcements
5:49 Confession & Forgiveness
7:44 Opening Hymn – Love Divine, All Loves Excelling
11:46 Greeting, Kyrie, and Prayer of the Day
13:00 Lesson – 2 Corinthians 5: 1-21
15:56 Gospel – Luke 15: 1-3,11-32
19:30 Homily – 2 Corinthians: Part 4
34:53 Hymn of the Day – Hallelujah for the Cross
39:05 Apostles’ Creed
39:51 Offertory Prayer & Prayers of the Church
42:32 Holy Communion
49:52 Closing Hymn – Love Come Down
52:52 Dismissal & Postlude

We are in the Season after Pentecost, when we are shaped by the Holy Spirit to learn and grow as followers of Jesus Christ. During this time, the narrative lectionary contains “mini-series” on various topics. This year we have series on the Lord’s Prayer, Job, and 2 Corinthians. Our paraments are green to reflect our growth as disciples of Jesus.

Music is covered by one of these licenses:
Reprinted and streamed with permission under ONE LICENSE # A-731472. All rights reserved.
Used by Permission. CCLI License #11287363 and CCLI Streaming License #20327355

12th Sunday after Pentecost

0:00 – Prelude
1:25 – Welcome & Announcements
2:33 – Confession & Forgiveness
4:19 – Opening Hymn – God Is Here
8:30 – Greeting, Kyrie, and Prayer of the Day
9:47 – Lesson – 2 Corinthians 4: 1-18
12:25 – Gospel – Matthew 5: 13-20
14:26 – Homily – 2 Corinthians: Part 3
27:34 – Hymn of the Day – Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise
29:36 – Apostles’ Creed
30:24 – Offertory Prayer & Prayers of the Church
32:53 – Holy Communion
39:49 – Closing Hymn – Christ is Risen
43:25 – Dismissal & Postlude

We are in the Season after Pentecost, when we are shaped by the Holy Spirit to learn and grow as followers of Jesus Christ. During this time, the narrative lectionary contains “mini-series” on various topics. This year we have series on the Lord’s Prayer, Job, and 2 Corinthians. Our paraments are green to reflect our growth as disciples of Jesus.

Music is covered by one of these licenses:
Reprinted and streamed with permission under ONE LICENSE # A-731472. All rights reserved.
Used by Permission. CCLI License #11287363 and CCLI Streaming License #20327355

11th Sunday after Pentecost

0:00 Prelude
1:31 Welcome & Announcements
3:42 Confession & Forgiveness
5:30 Opening Hymn – In Christ Alone
9:36 Greeting, Kyrie, and Prayer of the Day
10:45 Lesson – 2 Corinthians 2: 1-10
12:06 Gospel – Matthew 18: 21-35
14:43 Homily – 2 Corinthians: Part 2
30:16 Hymn of the Day – Forgive Our Sins as We Forgive
32:25 Apostles’ Creed
33:14 Offertory Prayer & Prayers of the Church
35:40 Holy Communion
42:10 Closing Hymn – Praise the King
46:20 Dismissal & Postlude

We are in the Season after Pentecost, when we are shaped by the Holy Spirit to learn and grow as followers of Jesus Christ. During this time, the narrative lectionary contains “mini-series” on various topics. This year we have series on the Lord’s Prayer, Job, and 2 Corinthians. Our paraments are green to reflect our growth as disciples of Jesus.

Music is covered by one of these licenses:
Reprinted and streamed with permission under ONE LICENSE # A-731472. All rights reserved.
Used by Permission. CCLI License #11287363 and CCLI Streaming License #20327355