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Proper 22

Worship
Lectionary Worship Workbook
Series IV, Cycle A
Hymns
Cantemos al Senor (O Sing To The Lord) (UM149, CBH55, NCH39, PH472)
O Day Of Rest And Gladness (CBH641, NCH66)
From All That Dwell Below The Skies (CBH49, UM101, NCH27, PH229)
All Beautiful The March Of Days (CBH159, NCH434, PH292)
Awake My Soul (CBH609, NCH491)
When I Survey The Wondrous Cross (NCH224, CBH259, 260, UM298, 299, PH100, 101)
When Jesus Wept (NCH191, CBH234, PH312)
Be Thou My Vision (PH330, NCH451, CBH545, UM451)
God's Law Is Perfect And Gives Life (PH167)

Anthems
The Holy Ten Commandments, Josef Haydn, Mercury, 3 to 5 equal voices
The Heavens Are Telling, Josef Haydn, G Schirmer, SATB, with STB solos
God Called Moses, John Horman, CGA, Unison
O Sing To The Lord, Cantad al Senor,
arr. Ziegenhals, CGA, Unison/2--part, optional maracas

Call to Worship (based on Psalm 19)
Leader:The heavens are telling the glory of God,
People:The firmament proclaims God's handiwork.
Leader:Day to day pours forth speech;
People:Night to night declares knowledge.
Leader:There is no speech, nor are there words; their voice is not heard;
People:Yet their voice goes out through all the earth,
All:Their words to the end of the world.

Prayer of Invocation
We call to you, O God. You have given us laws that we are to keep. And yet you sent your son to show us that some laws can and should be broken. Give us insight as we hear the ancient laws read and interpreted. Help us to know which laws are God--given, and which have been created out of human need or greed. Grant us wisdom as we listen to your word for us today. Amen.

Scripture Readings
Exodus 20:1--4, 7--9, 12--20: This passage can be strengthened by having an amplified voice read the Ten Commandments without the congregation being able to see that person. It can be very effective if you have someone with a good and authoritative voice. The sex of the person does not matter as long as he/she speaks confidently. Have a Narrator at the lectern, and have people in the congregation stand up and read together the People's part.

Narrator: Then God spoke all these words:

God: I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery; you shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not make wrongful use of the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not acquit anyone who misuses his name. Remember the sabbath day, and keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work. Honor thy father and your mother, so that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you. You shall not murder. You shall not commit adultery. You shall not steal. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. You shall not covet your neighbor's house; you shall not covet your neighbor's wife, or male, or female slave, or ox, or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.

Narrator: When all the people witnessed the thunder and lightning, the sound of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking, they were afraid and trembled and stood at a distance, and said to Moses,

People: You speak to us, and we will listen; but do not let God speak to us, or we will die.

Narrator: Moses said to the people, "Do not be afraid; for God has come only to test you and to put the fear of him upon you so that you do not sin."

Psalm 19: This is a wonderful psalm, and makes mention of God's precepts. Use it in the service, and have the congregation read it responsively. The right side would read the odd--numbered verses and the left side the even--numbered verses. A deaf sign language interpreter might stand at the front of the church and sign it as the people read and watch the interpretation.

Matthew 21:33--46: This passage is very violent, so do not act it out. But it is an important passage as it is also about the Law and the Pharisees' interpretation of the Law. It is definitely a warning to the Pharisees. One person could read it, as Jesus taught, or it could be quite effective read by a choral speaking choir.
1 2 3
4 5 6 10 11
7 8 9 12

All: Listen to another parable.

Voice 7: There was a landowner who planted a vineyard, put a fence around it, dug a wine press in it, and built a watchtower.

Voice 8: Then he leased it to tenants and went to another country.

Voice 9: When the harvest time had come, he sent his slaves to the tenants to collect his produce.

Voices 10, 11, and 12: But the tenants seized his slaves and beat one, killed another, and stoned another.

All: And again he sent other slaves, more than the first;

Voices 10, 11, and 12: And they treated them in the same way.

Voice 4: Finally he sent his son to them, saying, "They will respect my son."

Voice 5: But when the tenants saw the son, they said to themselves,

Voices 1, 2, and 3: This is the heir; come, let us kill him and get his inheritance.

Voices 10, 11, and 12: So they seized him, threw him out of the vineyard, and killed him.

Voice 6: Now when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those tenants?

Voice 1: They said to him,

Voices 1 to 9: He will put those wretches to a miserable death, and lease the vineyard to other tenants who will give him the produce at the harvest time.

Voice 2: Jesus said to them,

Voice 3: Have you never read in the scriptures: "The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; this was the Lord's doing, and it is amazing in our eyes?"

Voice 4: Therefore I tell you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you

Voices 5 and 6: And given to a people that produces the fruits of the kingdom.

Voices 7, 8, and 9: The one who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces;

Voices 1 to 9: And it will crush anyone on whom it falls.

Voices 10, 11, and 12: When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard his parables, they realized that he was speaking about them. They wanted to arrest him,

Voices 7 to 12: But they feared the crowds,

All:
Because they regarded him as a prophet.

Call to Offering
In Philippians 3, Paul says that he presses on toward the goal for the prize of the heavenly call of God in Jesus Christ. May we all push on toward that goal as the ushers wait upon us for our gifts and offerings.

Prayer of Dedication
Great and awesome God, may the gifts we bring today be used to comfort the afflicted and to afflict the comforted as we press on toward the goal of your kingdom on earth. Amen.

Benediction
Leader:
Go from this place today striving to keep God's laws. Let all your words and thoughts be as God would have them be, and show the love of God in all you do and say. Be kind yet brave in all your actions, and fear not, for God is with you. Amen.

Choral Response
God's Law Is Perfect (v. 1)

New & Featured This Week

The Immediate Word

Mary Austin
Bethany Peerbolte
Christopher Keating
Ron Love
Thomas Willadsen
George Reed
Dean Feldmeyer
For December 23, 2018:

CSSPlus

Arley K. Fadness
“...and Mary gave birth to her first born son...and laid him in a manger..”

(V. 7a)

Merry Christmas children,

I love Christmas don't you? There's the tree, the lights, the carols, the nativity scene, families getting together --- and the presents! Were there any presents at your house?

(children respond)
Arley K. Fadness
“...blessed are you among women...” (V. 42b)

Good morning boys and girls,

I am loving seeing you today. How are you dear children? Getting excited for Christmas? Are you planning special things with your family?

(children respond) (presenter may share personal plans and/or experiences)

Today, this Sunday, is called the 4th Sunday of Advent. We call it that in the church calendar. But I have a better name. Know what it is? Mother's Day!!

StoryShare

Peter Andrew Smith
Frank Ramirez
Contents
“Seeing the Future” by Peter Andrew Smith
“A Distant Land” by Frank Ramirez


Seeing the Future
by Peter Andrew Smith
Luke 2:(1-7) 8-20

John sat at the edge of his bed in the half way house staring out the window.

“Are you okay, John?” Carl asked from the doorway.

Keith Hewitt
C. David Mckirachan
Contents
“First Encounter” by Keith Hewitt
“That’s Weird” by C. David McKirachan


First Encounter
by Keith Hewitt
Luke 1:39-45, (46-55)

Emphasis Preaching Journal

Bonnie Bates
Bob Ove
Bill Thomas
Frank Ramirez
Ron Love
Mark Ellingsen
Isaiah 62:6-11
This seems to be a change he looks forward to in Old Testament times. Isaiah is looking forward to the Lord’s coming. He is telling the people in that day to look forward to Jerusalem being restored, Jesus is the only one who can restore it.

Several future books in the Old Testament have restored watchmen to wait on the Lord’s coming. It sounds like we must spend all our time waiting for the day the Lord has promised. It sounds like we must give him no rest until we get it.

Mark Ellingsen
All the lessons testify to the theme of why Christmas matters! The festival encourages sermons on what Christ accomplishes in our lives and a joyful celebration of thanks for the best Christmas present of all -- the babe in the manger.

Isaiah 62:6-12
Mark Ellingsen
Bob Ove
Bonnie Bates
Bill Thomas
Frank Ramirez
Ron Love
Micah 5:2-5a
But you, O Bethlehem of Ephrathah, who are one of the little clans of Judah…(Micah 5:2).

Most towns have a slogan. We remember the clever ones.

I spent part of my childhood in the city of Azusa, California. The town was named after the Susa family, ranchers who owned much of the land during the days of Spanish colonization. But the town fathers decided they needed something a little more catchy, so they advertised that Azusa has everything from A to Z in the USA.
Frank Ramirez
“Current Events” can be very significant at the time they happen, but they can change and/or grow in significance as time goes by. Micah addresses a current political situation in his day that is pretty significant. Judah is under siege from Assyria. But the words of hope that he shares grow in significance over the centuries until hundreds of years later biblical experts are able to tell the Magi that Micah is telling us -- and is still telling us -- that the greatest king of kings will be coming from one of the smallest of the clans of Israel.

The Village Shepherd

Janice B. Scott
Call to Worship:

Come, let us go even now to Bethlehem with the shepherds and the angels and see Mary and Joseph, with the baby lying in a manger.


Invitation to Confession:

Jesus, we come to worship the baby in the manger.
Lord, have mercy.

Jesus, we come to offer ourselves and our own gifts.
Christ, have mercy.

Jesus, we come to absorb your love.
Lord, have mercy.

Janice B. Scott
While I consider myself to be very much in tune with the modern era, well into technology and all that it can offer, there are times when I look back with nostalgia to the past.

SermonStudio

Cynthia E. Cowen
The Christmas concert was about to begin. The professional musicians were ready. All eyes were on the band director as he brought down his baton. Softly, flutes began weaving a magical introduction, capturing the audience's spirit. An instrumental duet formed with clarinets adding their voices. Then more wind instruments came in. Finally, brass and percussion entered and volume and tempo increased. Each section's contribution melded into a harmonious voice. The rehearsals had been worth it; the time and labor had not been in vain.
Paul E. Flesner
Theologian Reinhold Niebuhr once observed that the Christmas event can only be spoken about in poetry. He went on to comment that over the centuries preachers have analyzed it in their sermons and have turned Christmas into dogma. "Dogma," he said, "is rationally petrified poetry." I think I understand what he means. He means that Christmas speaks to the heart.

Special Occasion