St. Paul's Weekly Update
Not Unto Us
Do you know what picture has the most "likes" on the website Instagram?
It used to be a picture of the celebrity Kylie Jenner, with a record 18 million likes. But someone didn't want her to have all the glory anymore, so they decided to post another picture as a challenge. They wanted to see if this picture could get more likes than any human on earth.
What was the picture of? An egg. And it smashed the record (without breaking the egg).
A simple egg is the most beloved picture on the internet today with 54,910,996 people "liking" it. Kylie Jenner was so unhappy with this humiliating defeat that she made a video of her cracking an egg. How humbling! Even the internet glory of the most famous person on Instagram paled in comparison to the internet glory of a lowly egg.
And guess who made the egg?
Our Psalm this week begins, "Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us but to your name be the glory" (Psalm 115:1).
All the "likes" in the world, all the earthly glory any of us (or any egg) could ever have, pale in comparison to the glory of the LORD. His glory is so record-setting that he doesn't need the approval of a thumbs up on a screen to prove it. Instead, he proves his glory with something even better. "Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us but to your name be the glory, because of your mercy, because of your truth."
Better than 54 million "likes," God is so glorious because of his mercy and truth! What could be more glorious than God's mercy to far more than 54 million people in Jesus? What is more glorious than the timeless truth of his word that will outlast every Instagram post by millenia?
And what could be better than turning, humbly, from our lowly glory, to praise God's glory seen in Christ that brings salvation and blessing to us?
"Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us, but to your name be the glory."
Prayer of the Day for Sunday:
Eternal God and Father, help us to remember Jesus, who obeyed your will and bore the cross for our salvation that through his anguish, pain, and death we may receive forgiveness of sins and inherit eternal life; through your Son, Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
+ Holy Week Worship +
At the meeting last week the Elders finalized the following details about Holy Week worship. There have been some changes.
Easter Sunrise at 7am (Livestreamed) is open to the congregation as well as school families. Since that service will be more crowded, please plan ahead to attend one of the other services if this would be more comfortable for you and your family.
A completely different Easter Festival service with communion will be held at 9 & 10:30am. The 9am service will be mask-required. The 10:30 will be livestreamed. Since the celebration of the resurrection is the highest festival of the Christian Church year, we will celebrate in a special way that the risen Lord is among us and gives us his immortality in his Supper.
Between Easter services there will be an Easter Breakfast at the school (8:15-9:45). The menu will be breakfast burritos. Men will assemble the burritos the day before and they will be available for "grab and go" in the main school hallway or for "grab and sit" in the Cafeteria if you're comfortable. Please contact Pastor Buelow or Ryan Busman if you're willing to help day before and/or day of. Two hopeful side-effects of the breakfast will be:
1) Starting a St. Paul's men's group that gets together monthly for projects/fellowship/Bible study
2) The freewill offering will be for restarting a St. Paul's/Saginaw area youth group.
Maundy Thursday is 3:30 (Mask-required) & 6:30
Good Friday Service of Darkness is at 1:30 (Mask-required) & 6:30
+ General Worship Details +
-- Sunday Worship is at 8:00am and 10:30 (mask-optional), with Bible Class and Sunday School in-between.
-- Monday night worship (mask-required) is at 6:30pm.
-- Midweek Lent Worship is at 3:30 & 6:30 (both mask-optional), 6:30 livestreamed. This week we welcome Pastor Patrick Ernst of St. John's, Frankenmuth, as our guest preacher under the theme: Hands of the Passion--Hands of Repentance (Tax Collector).
-- The livestream of Sunday 8:00am and the Midweek 6:30pm services can be found here (Sunday Bible study livestream can be found there as well). See worship preparation below to get the hymns and readings ready (or find bulletin here)
-- Private communion always available by appointment. Don't let anything separate you from God's means of grace! Call the office or call/email Pastor Naumann (412-0232); Pastor Buelow (412-0458)
God bless you as you serve Him!
Worship Preview for Sunday
Worship helps from https://wels.net/serving-you/devotions/worship-helps/
Fifth Sunday in Lent:
Jesus Is Our High Priest Who Offers Himself
Before Jesus was born, believers had to regularly offer up sacrifices for sin. Only the high priest could go before God with the blood and prayers of the people. These sacrifices would go on and on for the entire life of the Old Testament believer as a vivid reminder that God would send a Savior who would be sacrificed on the behalf of all people. Today the Word of God shows that Jesus, our High Priest, would sacrifice himself and bring a new covenant of life that would last forever.
First Lesson – Jeremiah 31:31-34
What is the old covenant that the Lord had made with Israel when he took them out of Egypt?
The old covenant the Lord revealed to the children of Israel in the desert was a covenant that regulated everything the children of Israel did. They had laws of what to eat, how to clean, what to touch and not touch. They had Sabbath laws. God required animal sacrifices for many reasons; some happened daily.
What would be the new covenant that the Lord would make?
The Lord said the new covenant “will not be like the covenant I made with their forefathers.” It would not contain any laws, rules, or regulations that must be kept or symbolic repeated sacrifices. Jesus would fulfill all of God’s demands. Jesus would keep all the laws and rules for all people. Jesus’ death would be the only sacrifice that would finally pay for the sins of the whole world. Jesus’ death would open the way to God; the veil in the temple was torn in two. Instead of a covenant of “You must do this and not do that,” Jesus’ new covenant comes through the assurance, “It is finished.” All of Jesus’ work is bestowed to us as the Holy Spirit uses the Word and sacraments to create and sustain faith in our hearts.
Second Lesson – Hebrews 5:7-10 (Sermon Text)
How did Jesus show “reverent submission” when he prayed with “loud cries and tears”?
Jesus’ “reverent submission” is seen clearly in the agony of his prayers in Gethsemane the night before his death. There he said, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.”
Does verse nine mean that only those who perfectly obey Jesus can be saved?
No. The apostle John writes, “We obey his commands and do what pleases him. And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ” (1 John 3:22-23). Faith is obedience to God and is worked in the individual by God’s grace through the Word and sacraments.
Gospel – John 12:20-33
How would the death of Jesus be judgment for the world?
Jesus paid for the sins of the whole world at the cross. Those who reject this truth will be judged and condemned. Those through faith, who believe Jesus’ sacrifice was good for all eternity, will enjoy heavenly bliss for all eternity.
Who is the prince of the world that would be driven out of his position of power?
Satan is the prince of the world. Jesus defeated him by apparent surrender to death.
Hymns: 726:1, 4-6, 354 (100, 741), 122:1, 4-5
Order of Service: DS2
Simple Devotion Plan for Lent & Other Devotional Material
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Week of Lent 4 (March 15-20)
M: John 6:22-29
Tu: 1 Kings 19:1-8
W: Mark 12:28-34
Th: John 6:47-59
F: John 12:20-26
S: John 8:21-30
Week of Lent 5 (March 22-27)
M: Hebrews 7:23-27
Tu: John 7:1-13
W: John 13:31-35
Th: Hebrews 10:1-10
F: John 11:47-55
S: Exodus 32:30-34
Week of Lent 6 (March 29-31, then Holy Week)
M: 1 Peter 2:21-24
Tu: 1 Timothy 6:12-14
W: Jeremiah 15:15-21
Lord’s Prayer and possibly other prayers:
Monday: Missions; Tuesday: Congregations & Schools; Wednesday: Families; Thursday: Country & Work; Friday: The Suffering & Those Who Care for Them; Saturday: For Jesus to Bring us Quickly to the Joys of Heaven
The Lord bless us and keep us, the Lord make his face shine on us and be gracious to us, the Lord look on us with favor and give us peace. Amen.
Other Devotional Materials:
Occasional Videos on our Facebook page lining up with the devotional plan above.
WELS Daily Devotions: https://wels.net/dev-daily/
Family devotions: https://wels.net/family-devotion/
Jesus' Passion: 40 days of Bible readings with one of our Seminary professors can be found at forwardinchrist.net or on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/watch/109950283839877/132177868707885/