Thank God for rain, and for an indoor space where we can record worship! We pray this finds you well. A few announcements: Gospel Animals reservations are due by November 1. Also, if you have names that you would like to have read aloud for All Saints Day, November 1, please submit them to the office: firstname.lastname@example.org. Next Sunday is Reformation Sunday and we plan, weather permitting, to gather outside in person. Wear red if you like!
Peace, Pastor Chris Lee
Order of Worship for October 18
Opening Hymn: ELW 526- “God is Here!” all verses. Brittany and Miriam Anderson, vocalists. Pam Edwards, pianist.
Prayer of the Day
Sovereign God, raise your throne in our hearts. Created by you, let us live in your image; created for you, let us act for your glory; redeemed by you, let us give you what is yours, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. Amen.
Readings: Miriam Anderson and Pastor Chris Lee
First Reading: Isaiah 45:1-7
The prophet announces that Cyrus the Persian emperor is the one the Lord has anointed to end Israel’s exile. The Lord makes this choice so that the whole world will recognize this Lord as the only God. Persia had a god of light and a god of darkness; the Lord claims sovereignty over both light and darkness.
1Thus says the Lord to his anointed, to Cyrus,
whose right hand I have grasped
to subdue nations before him
and strip kings of their robes,
to open doors before him—
and the gates shall not be closed:
2I will go before you
and level the mountains,
I will break in pieces the doors of bronze
and cut through the bars of iron,
3I will give you the treasures of darkness
and riches hidden in secret places,
so that you may know that it is I, the Lord,
the God of Israel, who call you by your name.
4For the sake of my servant Jacob,
and Israel my chosen,
I call you by your name,
I surname you, though you do not know me.
5I am the Lord, and there is no other;
besides me there is no god.
I arm you, though you do not know me,
6so that they may know, from the rising of the sun
and from the west, that there is no one besides me;
I am the Lord, and there is no other.
7I form light and create darkness,
I make weal and create woe;
I the Lord do all these things.
Psalm: Psalm 96:1-9 [10-13]
1Sing to the Lord a new song;
sing to the Lord, all the earth.
2Sing to the Lord, bless the name of the Lord;
proclaim God’s salvation from day to day.
3Declare God’s glory among the nations
and God’s wonders among all peoples.
4For great is the Lord and greatly to be praised,
more to be feared than all gods.
5As for all the gods of the nations, they are but idols;
but you, O Lord, have made the heavens.
6Majesty and magnificence are in your presence;
power and splendor are in your sanctuary.
7Ascribe to the Lord, you families of the peoples,
ascribe to the Lord honor and power.
8Ascribe to the Lord the honor due the holy name;
bring offerings and enter the courts of the Lord.
9Worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness;
tremble before the Lord, all the earth.
10Tell it out among the nations: “The Lord is king!
The one who made the world so firm that it cannot be moved will judge the peoples with equity.”
11Let the heavens rejoice, and let the earth be glad;
let the sea thunder and all that is in it; let the field be joyful and all that is therein.
12Then shall all the trees of the wood shout for joy at your coming, O Lord,
for you come to judge the earth.
13You will judge the world with righteousness
and the peoples with your truth.
Second Reading: 1 Thessalonians 1:1-10
Most likely this letter is the first written by Paul. Paul gives pastoral encouragement and reassurances to new Christians living in an antagonistic environment. Their commitment of faith, love, and hope makes them a model for other new Christian communities.
1Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy,
To the church of the Thessalonians in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ:
Grace to you and peace.
2We always give thanks to God for all of you and mention you in our prayers, constantly 3remembering before our God and Father your work of faith and labor of love and steadfastness of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ. 4For we know, brothers and sisters beloved by God, that he has chosen you, 5because our message of the gospel came to you not in word only, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction; just as you know what kind of persons we proved to be among you for your sake. 6And you became imitators of us and of the Lord, for in spite of persecution you received the word with joy inspired by the Holy Spirit, 7so that you became an example to all the believers in Macedonia and in Achaia. 8For the word of the Lord has sounded forth from you not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but in every place your faith in God has become known, so that we have no need to speak about it. 9For the people of those regions report about us what kind of welcome we had among you, and how you turned to God from idols, to serve a living and true God, 10and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead—Jesus, who rescues us from the wrath that is coming.
Gospel: Matthew 22:15-22
After Jesus begins teaching in the temple, religious leaders try to trap him with questions. First they ask if God’s people should pay taxes to an earthly tyrant like Caesar.
15Then the Pharisees went and plotted to entrap [Jesus] in what he said. 16So they sent their disciples to him, along with the Herodians, saying, “Teacher, we know that you are sincere, and teach the way of God in accordance with truth, and show deference to no one; for you do not regard people with partiality. 17Tell us, then, what you think. Is it lawful to pay taxes to the emperor, or not?” 18But Jesus, aware of their malice, said, “Why are you putting me to the test, you hypocrites? 19Show me the coin used for the tax.” And they brought him a denarius. 20Then he said to them, “Whose head is this, and whose title?” 21They answered, “The emperor’s.” Then he said to them, “Give therefore to the emperor the things that are the emperor’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” 22When they heard this, they were amazed; and they left him and went away.
Sermon: Pastor Chris Lee
Hymn of the Day: 713- “O God of Every Nation,” all verses. Brittany and Miriam Anderson, vocalists. Pam Edwards, pianist.
Prayers of Intercession
With confidence in God’s grace and mercy, let us pray for the church, the world, and all those in need.
Gracious God, you call us by name and invite us to share your good news. Send your Holy Spirit among preachers, missionaries, and evangelists. We give thanks for the witness of your servant Luke, the evangelist, whom the church commemorates today. Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.
God of praise, the heavens and all creation declare your salvation. From the rising of the sun to its setting, may the whole universe show forth your goodness. Raise up devoted stewards of all that you have made. Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.
God of all, may your word of justice sound forth in every place. Restore divided nations and communities with reconciling truth. Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.
God of light, we pray for those living with pain, illness, isolation, grief, anger, or doubt especially Sky Stoutt, Jeanna LaRue, Louise Larson, Lauren Bloomquist, Dan Wolever, and Karen Bemowski. Join their voices in a new song, assuring them that you call them each by name. Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.
God of truth, you show no partiality. May your spirit guide the work of justices, magistrates, court officials, and all vocations of the law, that your promise of restoration may be known. Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.
Living God, as you raised Jesus from the dead, so raise up those who have died in you especially Rhoda Anderson. We give thanks for their witness, confident of your rescuing welcome for all. Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.
Listen as we call on you, O God, and enfold in your loving arms all for whom we pray, in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The Lord’s Prayer
Communion Hymn: “Thy Will Be Done, Lord,” by Eilers. Brittany, Miriam and Sharon Anderson; Pam Edwards, vocalists. Pam Edwards, pianist.
Prayer after Communion
We give you thanks, gracious God, that you have once again fed us with food beyond compare, the body and blood of Christ. Lead us from this place, nourished and forgiven, into your beloved vineyard to wipe away the tears of all who hunger and thirst, guided by the example of the same Jesus Christ and led by the Holy Spirit, now and forever. Amen.
Father, ☩ Son, and Holy Spirit, bless you and lead you into the way of truth and life. Amen.
Sending Hymn: ELW 825- “You Servants of God,” all verses. Brittany and Miriam Anderson, vocalists. Pam Edwards, pianist.
Go in peace. Christ is with you.
Thanks be to God.
Image credits: Caesar coin photo, Catawiki; Caesar coin, Pinterest; and Autumn Sky at Black Hawk State Park, Therese Guise.
“God is Here!” Text: Fred Pratt Green, 1903 – 2000. Music: Cyril V. Taylor, 1907 – 1991. Text copyright 1979 Hope Publishing Company. Music copyright 1942, ren. 1970 Hope Publishing Company. All rights reserved. Permission to podcast/stream the music in this service obtained from One License with license #A-704843.
“O God of Every Nation.” Text: William W. Reid Jr., b. 1923. Music: Welsh tune, 19th cent. Text copyright 1958, ren. 1986 The Hymn Society, admin. Hope Publishing Company. All rights reserved. Permission to podcast/stream the music in this service obtained from One License with license #A-704843.
“Thy Will Be Done, Lord.” Contributors: Joyce Elaine Eilers. Text: © 1975, Heritage Music Press/Lorenz. All rights reserved. Permission to podcast/stream the music in this service obtained from One License with license #A-704843.
“You Servants of God.” Text: Charles Wesley, 1707. – 1806. Music: attr. Johann Michael Haydn, 1737 – 1806. Public domain.
Sundays and Seasons.com. Copyright 2020 Augsburg Fortress. All rights reserved. New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Reprinted/ streamed with permission under Augsburg Fortress Liturgies Annual License #SAS006904. Duplication in any form is prohibited without permission or valid license from the copyright administrator.