SECOND SUNDAY IN LENT
March 5th, 2023
The Rev. Joshua Heimbuck, Pastor
“Wherever two or three are gathered in my Name, there I am in the midst of them.” A group of people gathered around the presence of their Lord to worship the God who made them, redeemed them, and loves them is no small thing. Here God strengthens, equips, and directs us in the building of his Kingdom. Guests and visitors, please honor us by signing our Guest Book located in the entrance hall of the church as you leave. If you have no church home of your own in the area, we invite you to make Grace Lutheran Church the center of your worship, learning, fellowship, and service. The fellowship of this morning continues with a Coffee Hour/Fellowship Hour following worship. Do join us and let us become better acquainted with you as you get to know us better. Come to worship with us again and often!
AS WE GATHER
Mary, the sister of Lazarus and Martha, was a witness to Christ as recorded in John’s Gospel. As Jesus and many others are gathered for dinner, Mary anoints Jesus’ feet with an ointment that was worth a year’s wages. What a generous act! Mary’s generosity is contrasted with Judas’s greed. Judas criticizes Mary’s generosity toward Jesus, saying that the ointment could have been sold and the proceeds given to the poor. But John notes something important: Judas did not say this because he cared about the poor. Judas kept the moneybag for the disciples and had been continually stealing from it. While Mary is generous toward Jesus, Judas seeks his own advantage. We remember Mary’s generosity and love, which point us to Jesus.
PRAYER BEFORE WORSHIP
Lord, God, your Son chose the path which led to pain before joy and the cross before glory. Plant his cross in our hearts so that in its power and love we may come to the final joy and glory; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen
INVOCATION & CONFESSION
In the Name of the Father and of the ☩ Son and of the Holy Spirit.
“When the time came, I listened to you,” says the Lord, “and when you needed
help, I came to save you.”
But we are dust, and to dust we shall return.
“Yet even now,” says the Lord, “return to me with all your heart, with fasting
and with weeping and with mourning.”
The sacrifice the Lord desires is a broke, contrite heart; it will not be
Let us then confess our sins to God our Father and in the presence of one another.
+ A Brief Silence for Reflection +
O God, we have sinned. In our thinking, in our speaking, in our doing—we have sinned. We have disobeyed your will, and we have neglected it. We stand condemned. But Jesus stands with us. His Spirit makes it possible for us to plead for mercy. We come with broken, contrite hearts, for we have sinned.
See what love the Father has for his children. Though we have run from him, he receives us back into his loving arms; though we have sinned, for Jesus’ sake we are forgiven in the Name of the Father, and of the + Son, and of the Holy Spirit and invited to eat at his table. Amen
Forgiven and reconciled by God, let us be reconciled with one another and share the peace of our Lord as we greet one another.
PASSING of PEACE
[The congregation is encouraged to share the peace of Christ and greet one another with the words: “The Lord’s peace be with you.” The response: “And also with you.”]
The grace, the wisdom, and the power of God be with you all. And also, with you.
PRAYER of THE DAY
O God, our leader and guide, in the waters of Baptism you bring us to new birth to live as your children. Strengthen our faith in your promises, that by your Spirit we may lift up your life to all the world through your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen
FIRST LESSON Genesis 12:1-4a
[God’s call to Abram and Sarai has a clear purpose—that through them all families of the earth would gain a blessing. As they set out on their journey, they are accompanied by promises of land, nation, and a great reputation.]
The LORD said to Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred and your father’s house to the land that I will show you. And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse, and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.
So, Abram went, as the LORD told him, and Lot went with him.
The word of the Lord. Thanks be to God!
SECOND LESSON 1 Corinthians 2:1-12
[In the person and example of Abraham we discover that a right relationship with God does not involve earning a reward from God but entails trusting God’s promises. Abraham is the forebear and model for both Jews and Gentiles, because we too trust that ours is a God who gives life to the dead.
What then shall we say was gained by Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh? For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God. For what does Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness.” Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as is due. And to the one who does not work, but trusts him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness, just as David also speaks of the blessing of the one to whom God counts righteousness apart from works:
Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered; blessed is the man against whom the LORD will not count his sin.”
For the promise to Abraham and his offspring that he would be heir of the world did not come through the law but through the righteousness of faith. For if it is the adherents of the law- who are to be heirs, faith is null and the promise is void. For the law brings wrath, but where there is not law there is no transgression.
That is why it depends on faith, in order that the promise may rest on grace and be guaranteed to all his offspring—not only to the adherents of the law but also to the one who shares faith with Abraham, who is the father of all of us, as it is written, “I have made you the father of many nations”—in the presence of the God in whom he believed, who gives life to the dead and calls into existence all the things that do not exist.
The word of the Lord. Thanks be to God!
GOSPEL John 12:1–11
Six days before the Passover, Jesus therefore came to Bethany, where Lazarus was, whom Jesus had raised from the dead. So, they gave a dinner for Him there. Martha served, and Lazarus was one of those reclining with Him at the table. Mary therefore took a pound of expensive ointment made from pure nard, and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped His feet with her hair. The house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume. But Judas Iscariot, one of His disciples (he who was about to betray Him), said, “Why was this ointment not sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?” He said this, not because he cared about the poor, but because he was a thief, and having charge of the moneybag he used to help himself to what was put into it. Jesus said, “Leave her alone, so that she may keep it for the day of My burial. The poor you always have with you, but you do not always have Me.”
When the large crowd of the Jews learned that Jesus was there, they came, not only on account of Him but also to see Lazarus, whom He had raised from the dead. So, the chief priests made plans to put Lazarus to death as well, because on account of him many of the Jews were going away and believing in Jesus.
The gospel of our Lord. Praise to You, O Christ!
SERMON Mary, the Sister of Lazarus and Martha Pr. Josh Text: The Gospel Lesson
I believe in God, the Father Almighty,
maker of heaven and earth.
And in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died and was buried.
He descended into hell.
The third day He rose again from the dead.
He ascended into heaven
and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty.
From thence He will come to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life ☩ everlasting. Amen
PRAYERS of THE CHURCH
OFFERINGS are brought forward
Gracious God, you provide us with every gift of creation, and you quench our thirst with living water. Receive these tokens of your goodness to us, together with all we have and are. May our lives be bread for the hungry and streams in the wilderness, signs of the abundance of your grace in Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen
The Lord be with you.
And also, with you.
Lift up your hearts.
We lift them to the Lord.
Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
It is right to give him thanks and praise.
WORDS of INSTITUTION
Our Father who art in heaven;
hallowed be Thy Name,
Thy kingdom come,
Thy will be done
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread;
and forgive us our trespasses
as we forgive those
who trespass against us;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil;
For thine is the kingdom
and the power and the glory
forever and ever. Amen
The peace of the Lord be with you always. And also, with you.
PRAYER of THANKSGIVING
We thank you, O God, for the free gift of righteousness and peace in Jesus Christ, whose body and blood have nourished us here. Lead us out from this house of prayer to the places you will show us, so that we will be a blessing to others in the Name of Christ, our Redeemer and Lord. Amen
With Great Boldness … Tell Everyone What He Has Done!
THE PRESENCE of CHRIST is celebrated in The Lord’s Supper. He comes to us in a real and present way with his life-giving body and blood in the bread and wine of The Sacrament to assure us of our forgiveness and to strengthen us in faith and service. All who trust and believe the words “given and shed for you for the forgiveness of sins” are welcome. Come, receive Christ’s presence in the meal prepared for you. Enjoy his presence. Children are encouraged to come forward with their parents and/or grandparents and receive a blessing.
SUNDAY BIBLE STUDY — The seven signs in John’s Gospel — Join us for a discussion on Christ’s seven signs beginning with a wedding feast in Cana and ending with the resurrection of Lazarus. Throughout this trip, we will see the incredible events of water turned into wine, a sick boy restored, a lame man brought to his feet, thousands fed, a storm silenced, a blind man gaining sight, and a dead man coming forth from his tomb.
THE SEVEN SIGNS
Changing water into wine (John 2:1–11)
Healing the royal official’s son (John 4:46–54)
Healing the paralyzed man (John 5:1–15)
Feeding the five thousand (John 6:5–14)
Walking on water (John 6:16–21)
Healing the man born blind (John 9)
Raising Lazarus from the dead (John 11:1–45)
Hope to see you Sunday mornings beginning at 9:00.
CELEBRATE LENT — Be sure to set the time aside now to join in the worship and celebration of The Sacrament. Each Wednesday at noon throughout March, you are invited to attend Midweek Lenten Devotions. Lent Devotionals are out now and can be found on the back table.
ELIZABETH WESTERBURG MEMORIAL SERVICE — Please plan on joining us on Saturday, March 18th, 2023 at 11:00 AM for a Celebration of Life honoring, Elizabeth Westerberg. Lunch will follow the service.
LOOKING FOR SOMETHING TO DO? — Mundi Productions, an Ashland-based nonprofit music production company focusing on performances highlighting the topics of social and environmental justice, equality, and peace will be presenting, their next concert, In Mulieribus: Among Sisters on March 12, 2023, at the SOU Music Recital Hall in Ashland. As their name describes, In Mulieribus is Latin for "among women"—the group is dedicated to strengthening community through the art of music, often focusing on repertoire by female composers and for women's voices. They will be joined by Ashland pianist Jodi French. This special program, called Among Sisters, features over 1,000 years of music written by women, starting in the 9th century with Greek composer Kassiani and culminating in the world premiere of a new work featuring poetry by Rogue Valley poet Tiziana DellaRovere. For tickets: www.humanitytickets.com or, by calling: 541-833-3066.
THIS WEEK AT GRACE
March 6th – March 12th, 2023
TUESDAY, the 7th Lay Ministry Meeting 12:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, the 8th Women’s Bible Study 10:00 AM
Midweek Lenten Devotion NOON
Choir Rehearsal 7:00 PM
THURSDAY, the 9th Cub Scouts 3:00 PM
SATURDAY, the 11th Men’s Breakfast Study 8:30 AM
SUNDAY, the 12th Bible Study 9:00 AM
Sunday School 9:00 AM
Worship 10:00 AM
Coffee Fellowship 11:00 AM