Sunday, November 12, 2017

Giving Thanks Nov 12, 2017

Worship on Sunday, November 12 …

My friends, we continue in our seasonal focus on Giving Thanks!

╬ Seeing the World!

Ana├»s Nin famously said, “We don’t see the world as it is, we see the world as we are.”  The way we approach the world has a lot to do with our experience of life.  Paul encourages the early Christian community to approach all of life from a place of thankfulness, “giving thanks in all circumstances … holding fast to what is good.” (1Thess.5) He calls us, as people of faith, to focus always on what is good and honorable, just and true. (Phil.4) The intention here is not pie-in-the-sky self-delusion.  Rather, it is to see the world as it is, but from a place of gratitude … gratitude for a loving God, for the gift that life is, and for the hopefulness of fresh possibility.

Here is a bulletin cover image.  Sermon and Reflection Slides are attached.  The Prayer of the Day and Readings are below.

I am grateful every day to share in ministry with you!

- Pr. Brad Highum
bhighum@abidinglove.org

click here to listen to the late service 
 click here for Sermon Audio Only

 click here for Childrens Sermon Audio Only


PRAYER OF THE DAY -------------------


Lord, inspire us by the power of your Spirit to see the world through eyes of hopefulness.  Help us to engage life from a place of gratitude, giving thanks in all circumstances for your goodness, grace and love.  Amen.

READINGS ----------------------------

First Reading:  2 Chronicles 5:11-14

11 Now when the priests came out of the holy place (for all the priests who were present had sanctified themselves, without regard to their divisions), 12 all the levitical singers, Asaph, Heman, and Jeduthun, their sons and kindred, arrayed in fine linen, with cymbals, harps, and lyres, stood east of the altar with one hundred twenty priests who were trumpeters. 13 It was the duty of the trumpeters and singers to make themselves heard in unison in praise and thanksgiving to the Lord, and when the song was raised, with trumpets and cymbals and other musical instruments, in praise to the Lord, "For he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever," the house, the house of the Lord, was filled with a cloud, 14 so that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud; for the glory of the Lord filled the house of God.

Psalm 100

1 Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth.
2 Worship the Lord with gladness; come into his presence with singing.
3 Know that the Lord is God.  It is he that made us, and we are his; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
4 Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise.  Give thanks to him, bless his name.
5 For the Lord is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations.

Second Reading:  1 Thessalonians 5:13-24

13 Be at peace among yourselves. 14 And we urge you, beloved, to admonish the idlers, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with all of them. 15 See that none of you repays evil for evil, but always seek to do good to one another and to all. 16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 19 Do not quench the Spirit. 20 Do not despise the words of prophets, 21 but test everything; hold fast to what is good; 22 abstain from every form of evil.  23 May the God of peace himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be kept sound and blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24 The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do this.

Gospel:  Luke 17:11-19

11 On the way to Jerusalem Jesus was going through the region between Samaria and Galilee. 12 As he entered a village, ten lepers approached him. Keeping their distance, 13 they called out, saying, "Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!" 14 When he saw them, he said to them, "Go and show yourselves to the priests." And as they went, they were made clean. 15 Then one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, praising God with a loud voice. 16 He prostrated himself at Jesus' feet and thanked him. And he was a Samaritan. 17 Then Jesus asked, "Were not ten made clean? But the other nine, where are they? 18 Was none of them found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?" 19 Then he said to him, "Get up and go on your way; your faith has made you well."

Sunday, November 5, 2017

All Saints Nov 5th, 2017

Worship on All Saints Sunday, November 5 …

We enter into our Season of Thanksgiving:  “Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart!”

╬ All Saints!

All Saints, the Feast of All Hallows, is a day of remembrance.  Historically in the church it was a time to celebrate the lives of saints of the faith who had gone to glory.  Their spiritual presence among the living at this annual festival has given rise to all kinds of folk traditions and customs.  But Scripture is quite clear in naming all the vast host of believers – especially those living today – as the “saints.”  Paul says it is the “great cloud of witnesses” that are the “holy ones,” the saints of God.  So our celebration is expanded with remembrance of those who have gone before us, those of the living Body of Christ today, and the generations to come, as well.  Today we remember, we hallow, and we give thanks for this cloud of witnesses of which we are a vital part!

The Prayer of the Day and Readings are below.

Blessings to you, to all the saints … those who have gone before us, and those yet to come!

- Pr. Brad Highum
bhighum@abidinglove.org

click here to listen to the late service 
 click here for Sermon Audio Only

 click here for Childrens Sermon Audio Only

PRAYER OF THE DAY ------------------


God of all creation – lord and giver of life –  today, even as your goodness and grace are remembered in us, we remember all of those who have gone before us.  Bless the ones through whom the gift of life has come to us.  And bless us to be a blessing to all the generations that follow.  Amen.

READINGS ---------------------------

First Reading:  Deuteronomy 5:12-16

12 Observe the sabbath day and keep it holy, as the Lord your God commanded you. 13 Six days you shall labor and do all your work. 14 But the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God; you shall not do any work — you, or your son or your daughter, or your male or female slave, or your ox or your donkey, or any of your livestock, or the resident alien in your towns, so that your male and female slave may rest as well as you. 15 Remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the Lord your God brought you out from there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm; therefore the Lord your God commanded you to keep the sabbath day.  16 Honor your father and your mother, as the Lord your God commanded you, so that your days may be long and that it may go well with you in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.

Psalm 34:1-8

1 I will bless the LORD at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth.
2My soul makes its boast in the LORD; let the humble hear and be glad.
3O magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt his name together.
4I sought the LORD, and he answered me, and delivered me from all my fears.
5Look to him, and be radiant; so your faces shall never be ashamed.
6This poor soul cried, and was heard by the LORD, and was saved from every trouble.
7The angel of the LORD encamps around those who revere him, and delivers them.
8O taste and see that the LORD is good; happy are those who take refuge in him.


Second Reading:  Revelation 7:9-10,15-17


9After this I looked, and there was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, robed in white, with palm branches in their hands. 10They cried out in a loud voice, saying, "Salvation belongs to our God who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb!"  15For this reason they are before the throne of God, and worship him day and night within his temple, and the one who is seated on the throne will shelter them.  16They will hunger no more, and thirst no more; the sun will not strike them, nor any scorching heat; 17for the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd, and he will guide them to springs of the water of life, and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes."

Gospel:  Luke 6:20-31

20 Then he looked up at his disciples and said:  "Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God. 21 "Blessed are you who are hungry now, for you will be filled.  "Blessed are you who weep now, for you will laugh. 22 "Blessed are you when people hate you, and when they exclude you, revile you, and defame you on account of the Son of Man. 23 Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, for surely your reward is great in heaven; for that is what their ancestors did to the prophets. 24 "But woe to you who are rich, for you have received your consolation. 25 "Woe to you who are full now, for you will be hungry. "Woe to you who are laughing now, for you will mourn and weep. 26 "Woe to you when all speak well of you, for that is what their ancestors did to the false prophets.  27 "But I say to you that listen, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. 29 If anyone strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also; and from anyone who takes away your coat do not withhold even your shirt. 30 Give to everyone who begs from you; and if anyone takes away your goods, do not ask for them again. 31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Semper Reformanda Oct 29,2017

Worship on Sunday, October 29 …

My friends, the day of celebration has come:  the 500th anniversary of the beginning of the Reformation!

╬ Semper Reformanda!

Today is a milestone in the life of the church and people of faith the world over.  It is a threshold moment as we stand in the light of our tradition and look ahead into the promise of coming days.  It is a time for remembrance and a time for prophecy, as well.  From the vantage of the present, we give thanks to God for the long and often arduous road that has led us to this day.  And we give thanks to God for shining light on the path ahead, in uncertain times.  One thing is certain:  change!  It has attended the journey at every turn thus far and is a continual calling as we go forward … Semper Reformanda! … always reforming!”

The Prayer of the Day and Readings are below.

I look forward to festival worship with our community, and all the future holds as we go forward together!

God’s blessings and peace,

- Pr. Brad Highum
bhighum@abidinglove.org

 click here for Sermon Audio Only

 click here for Childrens Sermon Audio Only

PRAYER OF THE DAY ----------------------------------

O God, our help in ages past, our hope for years to come!  Give us strength and courage to embrace the opportunities of new days.  You, who have walked the road with us in times past, lead us forward in the way of your Christ.  Amen.

READINGS -------------------------------------
First Reading:  Jeremiah 31:31-34

31 The days are surely coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah. 32 It will not be like the covenant that I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt — a covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, says the Lord. 33 But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. 34 No longer shall they teach one another, or say to each other, "Know the Lord," for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, says the Lord; for I will forgive their iniquity, and remember their sin no more.

Psalm 105: 1-10

1 O give thanks to the Lord, call on his name, make known his deeds among the peoples.
2 Sing to him, sing praises to him; tell of all his wonderful works.
3 Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice.
4 Seek the Lord and his strength; seek his presence continually.
5 Remember the wonderful works he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he has uttered,

6 O offspring of his servant Abraham, children of Jacob, his chosen ones.
7 He is the Lord our God; his judgments are in all the earth.
8 He is mindful of his covenant forever, of the word that he commanded, for a thousand generations,
9 the covenant that he made with Abraham, his sworn promise to Isaac,
10 which he confirmed to Jacob as a statute,

Second Reading:  Romans 3:19-28
19 Now we know that whatever the law says, it speaks to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced, and the whole world may be held accountable to God. 20 For "no human being will be justified in his sight" by deeds prescribed by the law, for through the law comes the knowledge of sin.  21 But now, apart from law, the righteousness of God has been disclosed, and is attested by the law and the prophets, 22 the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction, 23 since all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God; 24 they are now justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God put forward as a sacrifice of atonement by his blood, effective through faith. He did this to show his righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over the sins previously committed; 26 it was to prove at the present time that he himself is righteous and that he justifies the one who has faith in Jesus.  27 Then what becomes of boasting? It is excluded. By what law? By that of works? No, but by the law of faith. 28 For we hold that a person is justified by faith apart from works prescribed by the law.

Gospel:  John 8:31-36
31 Then Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, "If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples; 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free." 33 They answered him, "We are descendants of Abraham and have never been slaves to anyone. What do you mean by saying, 'You will be made free'?"  34 Jesus answered them, "Very truly, I tell you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. 35 The slave does not have a permanent place in the household; the son has a place there forever. 36 So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.

Sunday, October 22, 2017

The Lord of the Harvest Oct 22,2017

Worship on Sunday, October 22 …

It’s Invitation Sunday at Abiding Love!  We will be distributing response packages to all of our people, inviting them to support the Growing Deeper // Reaching Wider Mission and Funding plan for the coming years.  We give thanks to the Lord of the Harvest for the goodness and blessing that flows in our lives, our faith community and our world.

╬ The Lord of the Harvest

From a people established in the land of God’s promise, Moses calls forth an offering of thanksgiving.  It is God who has delivered them from bondage and darkness and brought them to a place of freedom, of prosperity, of abundance.  And Moses invites them to bring the “first fruit” of their lives in this bountiful land as an offering in gratitude for the blessings of God.  Jesus looks on the following that gathers around him, in a world of promise, and proclaims that the harvest plentiful. “Pray now,” he says, “for the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers” to gather in the abundance of God, to share generously, so that all may be fed, all may be healed, redeemed and made whole!

The Prayer of the Day and Readings are below.

This is a time of great hope and promise for Abiding Love!  We pray for the Lord of the Harvest to fill us with a spirit of generosity and commitment to our shared life and ministry.

Blessings to you all,

- Pr. Brad Highum
bhighum@abidinglove.org

 click here for Sermon Audio Only

 click here for Childrens Sermon Audio Only

PRAYER OF THE DAY ----------------------------------------------

God of all creation, you fill us with good things and provide for our every need.  Give us glad and generous hearts to simply share the blessings that you have poured into our lives.  Amen.

READINGS -----------------------------------------------------------

First Reading:  Deuteronomy 26:1-11

26 When you have come into the land that the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance to possess, and you possess it, and settle in it, 2 you shall take some of the first of all the fruit of the ground, which you harvest from the land that the Lord your God is giving you, and you shall put it in a basket and go to the place that the Lord your God will choose as a dwelling for his name. 3 You shall go to the priest who is in office at that time, and say to him, "Today I declare to the Lord your God that I have come into the land that the Lord swore to our ancestors to give us." 4 When the priest takes the basket from your hand and sets it down before the altar of the Lord your God, 5 you shall make this response before the Lord your God: "A wandering Aramean was my ancestor; he went down into Egypt and lived there as an alien, few in number, and there he became a great nation, mighty and populous. 6 When the Egyptians treated us harshly and afflicted us, by imposing hard labor on us, 7 we cried to the Lord, the God of our ancestors; the Lord heard our voice and saw our affliction, our toil, and our oppression. 8 The Lord brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, with a terrifying display of power, and with signs and wonders; 9 and he brought us into this place and gave us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey. 10 So now I bring the first of the fruit of the ground that you, O Lord, have given me." You shall set it down before the Lord your God and bow down before the Lord your God. 11 Then you, together with the Levites and the aliens who reside among you, shall celebrate with all the bounty that the Lord your God has given to you and to your house.

Psalm 107:31-38

31 Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for humankind.
32 Let them exalt him in the assembly of the people and praise him in the council of the elders. 
33 He turned rivers into a desert, flowing springs into thirsty ground,
34 and fruitful land into a salt waste, because of the wickedness of those who lived there.
35 He turned the desert into pools of water and the parched ground into flowing springs;
36 there he brought the hungry to live, and they founded a city where they could settle.
37 They sowed fields and planted vineyards that yielded a fruitful harvest;
38 he blessed them, and their numbers greatly increased, and he did not let their herds diminish.

Second Reading:  2 Corinthians 9:6-15

6 The point is this: the one who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and the one who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. 7 Each of you must give as you have made up your mind, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. 8 And God is able to provide you with every blessing in abundance, so that by always having enough of everything, you may share abundantly in every good work. 9 As it is written, "He scatters abroad, he gives to the poor; his righteousness endures forever."  10 He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness. 11 You will be enriched in every way for your great generosity, which will produce thanksgiving to God through us; 12 for the rendering of this ministry not only supplies the needs of the saints but also overflows with many thanksgivings to God. 13 Through the testing of this ministry you glorify God by your obedience to the confession of the gospel of Christ and by the generosity of your sharing with them and with all others, 14 while they long for you and pray for you because of the surpassing grace of God that he has given you. 15 Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!

Gospel:  John 4:31-38

31 Meanwhile the disciples were urging him, "Rabbi, eat something." 32 But he said to them, "I have food to eat that you do not know about." 33 So the disciples said to one another, "Surely no one has brought him something to eat?" 34 Jesus said to them, "My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to complete his work. 35 Do you not say, 'Four months more, then comes the harvest'? But I tell you, look around you, and see how the fields are ripe for harvesting. 36 The reaper is already receiving wages and is gathering fruit for eternal life, so that sower and reaper may rejoice together. 37 For here the saying holds true, 'One sows and another reaps.' 38 I sent you to reap that for which you did not labor. Others have labored, and you have entered into their labor."

Sunday, October 15, 2017

to God alone October 15,2017

Worship on Sunday, October 15 …
Our focus on the “Solas” of the Reformation culminates in Soli Deo Gloria, to God alone be the glory!
╬ “Do everything for the glory of God!”
The Biblical word we translate as “glory” is “doxa.”  It is the root of “doxology” as in the ending of the Lord’s Prayer:  “For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory.”  A foundation stone of our faith is that creation itself exists for the glory of God.  It is an invitation from the One creator and lord of all to live to that glory which God intended for all creation.  It is an invitation to understand that our lives and everything we do can be lived and carried out in thanksgiving for the gift of life and grace that comes to us from God alone.  To God be the glory, now and forever, amen!
Here is a bulletin cover image.  Attached are Sermon and Reflection Slides.  Readings and the Prayer of the Day are below.
Blessings to all as we seek to glorify God in worship and in our daily lives!
- Pr. Brad Highum
bhighum@abidinglove.org
 click here for Sermon Audio Only

 click here for Childrens Sermon Audio Only

PRAYER OF THE DAY -------------------------

Creating God, in Christ is your fullness revealed.  We give you thanks for the gift of God-self – divinity in humanity – a gift of grace and truth and light for our lives.  Amen.

PRAYER OF THE DAY ------------------

God of all creation, we lift our hearts and voices in praise and thanksgiving to you.  May all we do be to your glory, in gratitude for your grace, for the sake of the world you love.  Amen.

READINGS ---------------------------

First Reading:  2 Chronicles 5:11-14

11 Now when the priests came out of the holy place (for all the priests who were present had sanctified themselves, without regard to their divisions), 12 all the levitical singers, Asaph, Heman, and Jeduthun, their sons and kindred, arrayed in fine linen, with cymbals, harps, and lyres, stood east of the altar with one hundred twenty priests who were trumpeters. 13 It was the duty of the trumpeters and singers to make themselves heard in unison in praise and thanksgiving to the Lord, and when the song was raised, with trumpets and cymbals and other musical instruments, in praise to the Lord, "For he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever," the house, the house of the Lord, was filled with a cloud, 14 so that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud; for the glory of the Lord filled the house of God.

Psalm 19:1-9

1 The heavens are telling the glory of God; and the firmament proclaims his handiwork.
2 Day to day pours forth speech, and night to night declares knowledge.
3 There is no speech, nor are there words; their voice is not heard;
4 yet their voice goes out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world.  In the heavens he has set a tent for the sun,
5 which comes out like a bridegroom from his wedding canopy, and like a strong man runs its course with joy.
6 Its rising is from the end of the heavens, and its circuit to the end of them; and nothing is hid from its heat.
7 The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul; the decrees of the Lord are sure, making wise the simple;
8 the precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the Lord is clear,
enlightening the eyes;
9 the fear of the Lord is pure, enduring forever; the ordinances of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.

Second Reading:  2 Corinthians 4:1-6

1 Therefore, since it is by God's mercy that we are engaged in this ministry, we do not lose heart. 2 We have renounced the shameful things that one hides; we refuse to practice cunning or to falsify God's word; but by the open statement of the truth we commend ourselves to the conscience of everyone in the sight of God. 3 And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. 4 In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. 5 For we do not proclaim ourselves; we proclaim Jesus Christ as Lord and ourselves as your slaves for Jesus' sake. 6 For it is the God who said, "Let light shine out of darkness," who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

Gospel:  John 17:1-5

17 After Jesus had spoken these words, he looked up to heaven and said, "Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son so that the Son may glorify you, 2 since you have given him authority over all people, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him. 3 And this is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. 4 I glorified you on earth by finishing the work that you gave me to do. 5 So now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had in your presence before the world existed.


Sunday, October 8, 2017

Christ Alone Oct 8. 2017

Worship on Sunday, October 8

╬ In the morning, when I rise …

He is called Messiah, the anointed one; Deliverer, Redeemer; Prince of Peace, King of Kings.  These are central pronouncements of our faith and yet have historically been treated as sedition by worldly authority.  “Solus Christus” – Christ Alone! – is the proclamation that true authority for the life of believers resides in Christ, the One who reveals the very heart of God.  This authority transcends all others in shaping our way of being in the world.  In the words of the old Gospel hymn: “Give me Jesus, give me Jesus!  You can have all this world, just give me Jesus!”

The Prayer of the Day and Readings are below.

We celebrate Christ as the gift of God to the world!

- Pr. Brad Highum
bhighum@abidinglove.org

click here to listen to the late service 
 click here for Sermon Audio Only

 click here for Childrens Sermon Audio Only

PRAYER OF THE DAY -------------------------

Creating God, in Christ is your fullness revealed.  We give you thanks for the gift of God-self – divinity in humanity – a gift of grace and truth and light for our lives.  Amen.

READINGS ----------------------------------

First Reading:  Daniel 7:13-14

13 As I watched in the night visions, I saw one like a son of man coming with the clouds of heaven. And he came to the Ancient One and was presented before him.  14 To him was given dominion and glory and kingship, that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve him.  His dominion is an everlasting dominion that shall not pass away, and his kingship is one that shall never be destroyed.

Psalm 118:19-26

19 Open to me the gates of righteousness, that I may enter through them and give thanks to the Lord.
20 This is the gate of the Lord; the righteous shall enter through it.
21 I thank you that you have answered me and have become my salvation.
22 The stone that the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone.
23 This is the Lord's doing; it is marvelous in our eyes.
24 This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.
25 Save us, we beseech you, O Lord! O Lord, we beseech you, give us success!
26 Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord.

Second Reading:  Colossians 1:9-23

9 For this reason, since the day we heard it, we have not ceased praying for you and asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of God's will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, 10 so that you may lead lives worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, as you bear fruit in every good work and as you grow in the knowledge of God. 11 May you be made strong with all the strength that comes from his glorious power, and may you be prepared to endure everything with patience, while joyfully 12 giving thanks to the Father, who has enabled you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the light. 13 He has rescued us from the power of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of his beloved Son, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.  15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; 16 for in him all things in heaven and on earth were created, things visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or powers — all things have been created through him and for him. 17 He himself is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 He is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that he might come to have first place in everything. 19 For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell.

Gospel:  John 1:1-5,10-18

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being 4 in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.  10 He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. 11 He came to what was his own, and his own people did not accept him. 12 But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God.  14 And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father's only son, full of grace and truth. 15 (John testified to him and cried out, "This was he of whom I said, 'He who comes after me ranks ahead of me because he was before me.'") 16 From his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. 17 The law indeed was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God. It is God the only Son, who is close to the Father's heart, who has made him known.

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Faith Alone October 1, 2017

LOOKING AHEAD to worship on Sunday, October 1 …

We turn our Sola focus to ‘FAITH,”  Sola Fide … “Faith Alone!”



╬ Sola Fide. Jesus talks a lot about faith.  He often chastises those closest to him for being fearful and having little of this “faith.”  He claims that faith the size of a mustard seed can move mountains.  He marvels at the faith – the trust, conviction, belief – of some, proclaiming that it is this faith that has delivered them, healed them, made them whole.  The Reformers hold as a sacred truth that it is the way to God.  Sola fide … faith alone!

The Prayer of the Day and Readings are below.

We pray for a new stirring of faith among the people of Abiding Love as we present our new mission plan – “Growing Deeper, Reaching Wider” – in a gathering of the congregation on this day.

God’s blessings to all!


- Pr. Brad Highum
bhighum@abidinglove.org
PRAYER OF THE DAY -------------------------------------

Creating God, faith itself is a gift from you.  Grow our faith, strengthen it.  Teach us to hold to it, to be sustained by it.  For our faith is in you and in faith alone are we saved.  Amen.

READINGS -----------------------------------------------

First Reading:  Habakuk 2:1-4

1 I will stand at my watchpost, and station myself on the rampart; I will keep watch to see what he will say to me, and what he will answer concerning my complaint.  2 Then the Lord answered me and said: Write the vision; make it plain on tablets, so that a runner may read it.  3 For there is still a vision for the appointed time; it speaks of the end, and does not lie.  If it seems to tarry, wait for it; it will surely come, it will not delay.  4 Look at the proud!  Their spirit is not right in them, but the righteous live by their faith.

Psalm 146

1 Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord, O my soul!
2 I will praise the Lord as long as I live; I will sing praises to my God all my life long.
3 Do not put your trust in princes, in mortals, in whom there is no help.
4 When their breath departs, they return to the earth; on that very day their plans perish.
5 Happy are those whose help is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the Lord their God,
6 who made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them; who keeps faith forever;
7 who executes justice for the oppressed; who gives food to the hungry.  The Lord sets the prisoners free;
8 the Lord opens the eyes of the blind.  The Lord lifts up those who are bowed down; the Lord loves the righteous.
9 The Lord watches over the strangers; he upholds the orphan and the widow, but the way of the wicked he brings to ruin.
10 The Lord will reign forever, your God, O Zion, for all generations.  Praise the Lord!

Second Reading:  Romans 1:8-17

8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is proclaimed throughout the world. 9 For God, whom I serve with my spirit by announcing the gospel of his Son, is my witness that without ceasing I remember you always in my prayers, 10 asking that by God's will I may somehow at last succeed in coming to you. 11 For I am longing to see you so that I may share with you some spiritual gift to strengthen you — 12 or rather so that we may be mutually encouraged by each other's faith, both yours and mine. 13 I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that I have often intended to come to you (but thus far have been prevented), in order that I may reap some harvest among you as I have among the rest of the Gentiles. 14 I am a debtor both to Greeks and to barbarians, both to the wise and to the foolish 15 — hence my eagerness to proclaim the gospel to

you also who are in Rome.  16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel; it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who has faith, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed through faith for faith; as it is written, "The one who is righteous will live by faith."

Gospel:  Matthew 8:5-13

5 When he entered Capernaum, a centurion came to him, appealing to him 6 and saying, "Lord, my servant is lying at home paralyzed, in terrible distress." 7 And he said to him, "I will come and cure him." 8 The centurion answered, "Lord, I am not worthy to have you come under my roof; but only speak the word, and my servant will be healed. 9 For I also am a man under authority, with soldiers under me; and I say to one, 'Go,' and he goes, and to another, 'Come,' and he comes, and to my slave, 'Do this,' and the slave does it." 10 When Jesus heard him, he was amazed and said to those who followed him, "Truly I tell you, in no one in Israel have I found such faith. 11 I tell you, many will come from east and west and will eat with Abraham and Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven, 12 while the heirs of the kingdom will be thrown into the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth." 13 And to the centurion Jesus said, "Go; let it be done for you according to your faith." And the servant was healed in that hour.