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The Third Sunday in Lent - March 20, 2022 - “Gracious Gardner” by Pr. Josh   

The Third Sunday in Lent

March 20, 2022

The Rev. Joshua Heimbuck, Pastor


We extend the hand of fellowship to all who worship with us this morning. It is our prayer that through this hour of prayer and thanksgiving, the Holy Spirit will strengthen your relationship with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. If you are worshiping with us for the first time and have not done so already, please honor us by signing our Guest Book in the entrance hall of the church as you leave. And, if you have no church home of your own in the area, we invite you to make Grace Lutheran the center of your worship, learning, fellowship, and service. Please join us for a cup of coffee after this morning’s worship and let us become better acquainted with you as you get to know us better. Come to worship with us again and often!



How then shall we live? What a profound question for Christians to consider midway through Lent! The Lord has shown His mercy to us, forgiven our sins, and delivered us from death. Then what? What is the focus of our lives? The call of the Readings for this Sunday points us to the repentance that bears the good fruit of God’s kingdom. Like trees that have failed to produce good fruit, the Lord has tended us with His Word, with the warning of the Law and the promise of the Gospel. But if the tree remains unfruitful, the tree will have to be cut down. It is a hard word to hear, but God remains merciful, and most of all, He seeks that we bear the good fruits of faith and repentance in our daily lives.


O God, you see how busy we are with many things. In this hour of worship and praise, give us rest from all that would cause us to be anxious. Turn us to listen to you as you come to us in your word, assuring us of that peace which passes all understanding; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.





PRELUDE Cantilenaby Carson Cooman Tatsiana Asheichyk, piano

OPENING SONG I Will Sing of the Mercies — By James H. Fillmore

I will sing of the mercies of the Lord forever, I will sing, I will sing.

I will sing of the mercies of the Lord forever, I will sing of the mercies of the Lord.

With my mouth will I make known Thy faithfulness, Thy faithfulness,

With my mouth will I make known Thy faithfulness to all generations.

I will sing of the mercies of the Lord forever, I will sing, I will sing.

I will sing of the mercies of the Lord forever, I will sing of the mercies of the Lord.

Words adapted from Psalm 89:1. Music: James H. Fillmore; arranged by Lee Herrington and Tom Fettke.

Arr. © 1986, 1992 Word Music (a div. of WORD, INC.) All Rights Reserved. International Copyright Secured.

Text saved C:\My Documents\Songs\I Will Sing of the


Pastor In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit.

Congregation        Amen.

CONFESSION AND ABSOLUTION Psalm 1:6; 5:4, 7, adapt.

Pastor The Lord knows the way of the righteous,

Congregation        but the way of the wicked will perish.

Pastor You are not a God who delights in wickedness; evil may not dwell with You.

Congregation        Through the abundance of Your steadfast love, I will enter Your house.

Silence for meditation and reflection.

Pastor Let us confess our sins to God our Father:

Congregation        Almighty God, maker of all things and judge of all people, we poor sinners confess to You that we have turned away from You. We have not done the good You desire but have done the evil You forbid. We repent of all our sins of thought, word, and deed and pray for Your mercy for the sake of Jesus Christ, our Lord. Turn our hearts away from sin and its temptation and grant us by the Holy Spirit to serve You with all our heart, mind, body, and soul. In the holy name of Jesus, we pray. Amen.

Pastor Almighty God in His mercy has given His Son to die for you and for His sake forgives you all your sins. As a called and ordained servant of Christ and by His authority, I therefore forgive you all your sins in the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. To the impenitent and unbelieving I declare that so long as you continue in your impenitence, God will not forgive your sins and will visit your iniquity upon you until you turn from your sinful ways, come to repentance, and trust in the merits of Jesus Christ alone.

Congregation        Amen.

Pastor Forgiven and reconciled by God, let us be reconciled with one another and share the peace of our Lord.


[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.”]

Pastor May the Lord, who has begun this good work in us, bring it to completion in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Congregation        Amen.

+ WORD +


Congregation O God, whose glory it is always to have mercy, be gracious to all who have gone astray from Your ways and bring them again with penitent hearts and steadfast faith to embrace and hold fast the unchangeable truth of Your Word; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.



[God has made the prophet Ezekiel a spiritual watchman over the house of Israel. Ezekiel not only speaks of death and judgment for the sins of the people, but he also speaks of life and redemption for those who turn from their evil ways. God desires that all people be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth!]

7“So you, son of man, I have made a watchman for the house of Israel. Whenever you hear a word from my mouth, you shall give them warning from me. 8If I say to the wicked, O wicked one, you shall surely die, and you do not speak to warn the wicked to turn from his way, that wicked person shall die in his iniquity, but his blood I will require at your hand. 9But if you warn the wicked to turn from his way, and he does not turn from his way, that person shall die in his iniquity, but you will have delivered your soul.

10“And you, son of man, say to the house of Israel, Thus have you said: ‘Surely our transgressions and our sins are upon us, and we rot away because of them. How then can we live?’ 11Say to them, As I live, declares the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live; turn back, turn back from your evil ways, for why will you die, O house of Israel?

12“And you, son of man, say to your people, The righteousness of the righteous shall not deliver him when he transgresses, and as for the wickedness of the wicked, he shall not fall by it when he turns from his wickedness, and the righteous shall not be able to live by his righteousness when he sins. 13Though I say to the righteous that he shall surely live, yet if he trusts in his righteousness and does injustice, none of his righteous deeds shall be remembered, but in his injustice that he has done he shall die. 14Again, though I say to the wicked, ‘You shall surely die,’ yet if he turns from his sin and does what is just and right, 15if the wicked restores the pledge, gives back what he has taken by robbery, and walks in the statutes of life, not doing injustice, he shall surely live; he shall not die. 16None of the sins that he has committed shall be remembered against him. He has done what is just and right; he shall surely live.

17“Yet your people say, ‘The way of the Lord is not just,’ when it is their own way that is not just. 18When the righteous turns from his righteousness and does injustice, he shall die for it. 19And when the wicked turns from his wickedness and does what is just and right, he shall live by them. 20Yet you say, ‘The way of the Lord is not just.’ O house of Israel, I will judge each of you according to his ways.”

Leader This is the Word of the Lord.

Congregation        Thanks be to God.

EPISTLE 1 Corinthians 10:1–13

[Paul uses images from Hebrew story and prophecy to speak the truth of Jesus Christ: he is our rock, our water, our food, and our drink. Christ is the living sign of God’s faithfulness.]

1I want you to know, brothers, that our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, 2and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, 3and all ate the same spiritual food, 4and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank from the spiritual Rock that followed them, and the Rock was Christ. 5Nevertheless, with most of them God was not pleased, for they were overthrown in the wilderness.

6Now these things took place as examples for us, that we might not desire evil as they did. 7Do not be idolaters as some of them were; as it is written, “The people sat down to eat and drink and rose up to play.” 8We must not indulge in sexual immorality as some of them did, and twenty-three thousand fell in a single day. 9We must not put Christ to the test, as some of them did and were destroyed by serpents, 10nor grumble, as some of them did and were destroyed by the Destroyer. 11Now these things happened to them as an example, but they were written down for our instruction, on whom the end of the ages has come. 12Therefore let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall. 13No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.

Leader This is the Word of the Lord.

Congregation        Thanks be to God.

SPECIAL MUSIC Jesus Walked This Lonesome Valley — by C.E. Walz Tatsiana Asheichyk, piano

HOLY GOSPEL Luke 13:1–9

Pastor The Holy Gospel according to St. Luke, the thirteenth chapter.

Congregation        Glory to You, O Lord.

[Asked about current tragic events, Jesus turns a lesson about whether suffering is deserved into a hard call to obedience. He tells them a parable that holds out hope that the timeline for ultimate judgment will be tempered by patience.]

1There were some present at that very time who told [Jesus] about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. 2And he answered them, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way? 3No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. 4Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem? 5No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”

6And he told this parable: “A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came seeking fruit on it and found none. 7And he said to the vinedresser, ‘Look, for three years now I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree, and I find none. Cut it down. Why should it use up the ground?’ 8And he answered him, ‘Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and put on manure. 9Then if it should bear fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down.’”

Pastor This is the Gospel of the Lord.

Congregation        Praise to You, O Christ.

SONG of THE DAY Prayer of St. Francis (See Insert)

SERMON “Gracious Gardner” Text: Luke 13:1–9



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.

What does this mean?

I believe that Jesus Christ, true God, begotten of the Father from eternity, and also true man, born of the virgin Mary, is my Lord, who has redeemed me, a lost and condemned person, purchased and won me from all sins, from death, and from the power of the devil; not with gold or silver, but with His holy, precious blood and with His innocent suffering and death, that I may be His own and live under Him in His kingdom and serve Him in everlasting righteousness, innocence, and blessedness, just as He is risen from the dead, lives and reigns to all eternity.

This is most certainly true.




Congregation Gracious God, we praise you for your wonderful creation and your all-sustaining love. Calm our anxiety over the needs of this life, that what we have freely received, we may freely give to the service of your Kingdom and the care of others in Jesus’ Name. Amen.



Pastor The Lord be with you.

Congregation        And also with you.

Pastor Lift up your hearts.

Congregation        We lift them to the Lord.

Pastor Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

Congregation        It is right to give Him thanks and praise.


Pastor It is truly good, right, and salutary that we should at all times and in all places give thanks to You, holy Lord, almighty Father, everlasting God, through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who overcame the assaults of the devil and gave His life as a ransom for many that with cleansed hearts we might be prepared joyfully to celebrate the paschal feast in sincerity and truth. Therefore with angels and archangels and with all the company of heaven we laud and magnify Your glorious name, evermore praising You and sing:


Holy, holy, holy Lord,

God of power and might

Heaven and earth are full of your glory

Hosanna, hosanna, hosanna in the highest

Blessed is he who comes

in the name of the Lord

Hosanna, hosanna, hosanna in the highest


Pastor Blessed are You, Lord of heaven and earth, for You have had mercy on those whom You created and sent Your only-begotten Son into our flesh to bear our sin and be our Savior. With repentant joy we receive the salvation accomplished for us by the all-availing sacrifice of His body and His blood on the cross.

Gathered in the name and the remembrance of Jesus, we beg You, O Lord, to forgive, renew, and strengthen us with Your Word and Spirit. Grant us faithfully to eat His body and drink His blood as He bids us do in His own testament. Gather us together, we pray, from the ends of the earth to celebrate with all the faithful the marriage feast of the Lamb in His kingdom, which has no end. Graciously receive our prayers; deliver and preserve us. To You alone, O Father, be all glory, honor, and worship, with the Son and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

Congregation        Amen.


Pastor Our Lord Jesus Christ, on the night when He was betrayed, took bread, and when He had given thanks, He broke it and gave it to the disciples and said: “Take, eat; this is My + body, which is given for you. This do in remembrance of Me.”

In the same way also He took the cup after supper, and when He had given thanks, He gave it to them, saying: “Drink of it, all of you; this cup is the new testament in My + blood, which is shed for you for the forgiveness of sins. This do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.”


Pastor As often as we eat this bread and drink this cup, we proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes.

Congregation        Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.

Pastor O Lord Jesus Christ, only Son of the Father, in giving us Your body and blood to eat and to drink, You lead us to remember and confess Your holy cross and passion, Your blessed death, Your rest in the tomb, Your resurrection from the dead, Your ascension into heaven, and Your coming for the final judgment. So remember us in Your kingdom and teach us to pray:


Congregation 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.


Pastor The peace of the Lord be with you always.

Congregation        Amen.


O Lamb of God

You take away the sins of the world,

Have mercy on us, have mercy on us.

O Lamb of God

You take away the sins of the world,

Have mercy on us, have mercy on us.

O Lamb of God

You take away the sins of the world,

Grant us peace.


SONG Here is Bread (See Insert)


Congregation        Merciful God, for freedom You have set us free through Christ’s liberating death and resurrection. In this freedom, teach us to live in the fruit of the Spirit given us in our Baptism that we may bear in our bodies the fulfillment of the Law as we love our neighbors as ourselves; through Jesus Christ, our Lord.



Pastor The Lord bless you and keep you.

The Lord make His face shine on you and be gracious to you.

The Lord look upon you with favor and + give you peace and may you be a blessing to others!

Congregation        Amen.

CLOSING SONG I Will Rejoice — by Grayson Warren Brown

I will rejoice, I will be glad.

I will praise God who holds my life in His hands.

I will rejoice, I will be glad.

I will praise God who holds my life in His hands.

I will praise my Father each and ev’ry day.

O and I will sing His love songs forever more.

I will rejoice, I will be glad.

I will praise God who holds my life in His hands.

I will rejoice, I will be glad.

I will praise God who holds my life in His hands.

I will praise the Father, I will praise the Son.

O and I will praise the Spirit forever more.

I will rejoice, I will be glad.

I will praise God who holds my life in His hands.

I will rejoice, I will be glad.

I will praise God who holds my life in His hands.

© 1979, 1994, Grayson Warren Brown. Published by OCP Publications. All rights reserved.



Pastor Go in peace! Serve the Lord!

Congregation        Thanks be to God.

+ The Worship is Over. Let the Service Begin! +

Creative Worship for the Lutheran Parish, Series C, Quarter 2. Copyright © 2021 Concordia Publishing House.

All rights reserved. Used by permission.


Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Created by Lutheran Service Builder © 2022 Concordia Publishing House.

Come to the table, Text: Claire Cloniger, Music: Martin J. Nystrom. Text & Music Copyright 1991 Integrity’s Hosanna! Music and Word Music;

Here is bread, Text & Music: Graham Kendrick, Text & Music Copyright 1993 Make Way Music, admin. Integrity Music;

Grace Notes

SAVE THE DATE! Worship ‘n Work Clothes – Sunday, April 3rd Wear your work clothes to Sunday worship and be ready to start working following a cup of coffee. COMING SOON: A Sign-up Sheet of chores that need to be accomplished in and around the church will be posted at the rear of the Sanctuary. Choose a chore and accomplish it on Worship ‘n Work Clothes Day OR at your leisure before or after.

AID TO UKRAINE — Lutheran World Relief is sending help for our neighbors suffering in the Ukraine crisis. Your gift will deliver urgent support, such as food, shelter, and other critically needed items. Give directly:

< >Online at mail to LWR, PO Box 17061, Baltimore, MD 21297-1061. Please write “Ukraine Match” in the memo line.OR

< >Online at LCMS.Org.By mail to The Lutheran Church — Missouri Synod, PO Box 66861, St. Louis, MO 63166-6861. Make your check out to “The LCMS” and write “Ukraine Relief” in the memo line.


WEDNESDAY: Women’s Bible Study 10:00 am

Lenten Service 12:00 noon

Choir Practice 7:00 pm

Newsletter Deadline

SUNDAY: Bible Study 9:00 am

Worship 10:00 am

STUDY OPPORTUNITIES at Grace: During the season of Lent, the Tuesday morning Women’s Study will be meeting on Wednesdays at 10:00 am in the Library/Conference Room. Next NewMen’s Coffee Study is scheduled for Saturday morning, April 9th, beginning at 8:30 am. Set these times aside now for a good discussion and fellowship.

Grace Lutheran Church

660 Frances Lane

Ashland, OR 97520


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