Welcome to ICYMI Worship! ICYMI stands for In Case You Missed It; our ICYMI series will give you a brief snapshot of worship each week so that you can worship in your home, on the road, or wherever life takes you.
At Cross of Christ, our basic worship order is based on worship patterns from Hebrew traditions and biblical accounts of the earliest Christians:
We GATHER with songs and prayer,
We HEAR God’s word,
We SHARE a meal of bread and wine,
We are SENT into the world to love and serve. Let us know how this format works for you.
Today is the Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost
Our Gathering song at our Traditional service is God Is Here!
We’ve shared music from this organist before, and he doesn’t disappoint with this rendition of our Gathering hymn today!
Prayer of the Day
God of love, giver of life, you know our frailties and failings. Give us your grace to overcome them, keep us from those things that harm us, and guide us in the way of salvation, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
This week’s readings are:
Ezekiel 18:1-4, 25-32
Ezekiel challenges those who think they cannot change because of what their parents were and did, or who think
they cannot turn from their wicked ways. God insistently invites people to turn and live.
18 The word of the Lord came to me: 2 What do you mean by repeating this proverb concerning the land of Israel, “The parents have eaten sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge”? 3 As I live, says the Lord God, this proverb shall no more be used by you in Israel. 4 Know that all lives are mine; the life of the parent as well as the life of the child is mine: it is only the person who sins that shall die.
25 Yet you say, “The way of the Lord is unfair.” Hear now, O house of Israel: Is my way unfair? Is it not your ways that are unfair? 26 When the righteous turn away from their righteousness and commit iniquity, they shall die for it; for the iniquity that they have committed they shall die. 27 Again, when the wicked turn away from the wickedness they have committed and do what is lawful and right, they shall save their life. 28 Because they considered and turned away from all the transgressions that they had committed, they shall surely live; they shall not die. 29 Yet the house of Israel says, “The way of the Lord is unfair.” O house of Israel, are my ways unfair? Is it not your ways that are unfair?
30 Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, all of you according to your ways, says the Lord God. Repent and turn from all your transgressions; otherwise iniquity will be your ruin. 31 Cast away from you all the transgressions that you have committed against me, and get yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! Why will you die, O house of Israel? 32 For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone, says the Lord God. Turn, then, and live.
Remember, O Lord, your compassion and love. (Ps. 25:6)
1 To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul.
2 O my God, in you I trust;
do not let me be put to shame;
do not let my enemies exult over me.
3 Do not let those who wait for you be put to shame;
let them be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous.
4 Make me to know your ways, O Lord;
teach me your paths.
5 Lead me in your truth, and teach me,
for you are the God of my salvation;
for you I wait all day long.
6 Be mindful of your mercy, O Lord, and of your steadfast love,
for they have been from of old.
7 Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
according to your steadfast love remember me,
for your goodness’ sake, O Lord!
8 Good and upright is the Lord;
therefore he instructs sinners in the way.
9 He leads the humble in what is right,
and teaches the humble his way.
As part of a call for harmony rather than self-seeking, Paul uses a very early Christian hymn that extols the
selflessness of Christ in his obedient death on the cross. Christ’s selfless perspective is to be the essential
perspective we share as the foundation for Christian accord.
2 1-4 If you’ve gotten anything at all out of following Christ, if his love has made any difference in your life, if being in a community of the Spirit means anything to you, if you have a heart, if you care— then do me a favor: Agree with each other, love each other, be deep-spirited friends. Don’t push your way to the front; don’t sweet-talk your way to the top. Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead. Don’t be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand.
5-8 Think of yourselves the way Christ Jesus thought of himself. He had equal status with God but didn’t think so much of himself that he had to cling to the advantages of that status no matter what. Not at all. When the time came, he set aside the privileges of deity and took on the status of a slave, became human! Having become human, he stayed human. It was an incredibly humbling process. He didn’t claim special privileges. Instead, he lived a selfless, obedient life and then died a selfless, obedient death—and the worst kind of death at that—a crucifixion.
9-11 Because of that obedience, God lifted him high and honored him far beyond anyone or anything, ever, so that all created beings in heaven and on earth—even those long ago dead and buried—will bow in worship before this Jesus Christ, and call out in praise that he is the Master of all, to the glorious honor of God the Father.
12-13 What I’m getting at, friends, is that you should simply keep on doing what you’ve done from the beginning. When I was living among you, you lived in responsive obedience. Now that I’m separated from you, keep it up. Better yet, redouble your efforts. Be energetic in your life of salvation, reverent and sensitive before God. That energy is God’s energy, an energy deep within you, God himself willing and working at what will give him the most pleasure.
This week’s Gospel text is from Matthew 21:23-32
After driving the moneychangers out of the temple (21:12), Jesus begins teaching there. His authority is
questioned by the religious leaders, who are supposed to be in charge of the temple.
23 When he entered the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came to him as he was teaching, and said, “By what authority are you doing these things, and who gave you this authority?” 24 Jesus said to them, “I will also ask you one question; if you tell me the answer, then I will also tell you by what authority I do these things. 25 Did the baptism of John come from heaven, or was it of human origin?” And they argued with one another, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will say to us, ‘Why then did you not believe him?’ 26 But if we say, ‘Of human origin,’ we are afraid of the crowd; for all regard John as a prophet.” 27 So they answered Jesus, “We do not know.” And he said to them, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I am doing these things.
28 “What do you think? A man had two sons; he went to the first and said, ‘Son, go and work in the vineyard today.’ 29 He answered, ‘I will not’; but later he changed his mind and went. 30 The father went to the second and said the same; and he answered, ‘I go, sir’; but he did not go. 31 Which of the two did the will of his father?” They said, “The first.” Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are going into the kingdom of God ahead of you. 32 For John came to you in the way of righteousness and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the prostitutes believed him; and even after you saw it, you did not change your minds and believe him.
Pastor Dave’s Sermon Snapshot: “Do What You’re Told”
In today’s Gospel lesson, Jesus confronts a group of religious leaders who question his authority, and in doing so reveals their hypocrisy. He also makes it clear that actions speak louder than words. Not only what we do (or say we will do) but WHY we do it matters, Jesus says. In the end, “outsiders” who accept God’s mercy will enter into God’s kingdom before the self-righteous who feel they do not need forgiveness.
The Hymn of the Day in our Traditional service is All Are Welcome
Prayers of the People – 10/1/17
Open to the gifts of the Holy Spirit, we pray for the church, the world, and all of God’s creation. Each petition will end, “Lord, in your mercy” to which the congregation responds, “Hear our prayer.” We observe a brief time of silence for preparation.
Lord of the Church, we pray for followers of your Son, Jesus Christ, here in this place and around the world. Unite us in one Spirit, striving with one mind to love you and love our neighbors in witness to our faith in you. Inspire us to be generous in all ways, and welcoming of all people, especially those whom others might consider outsiders and late-comers. Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.
Lord of all lands, we pray for all people everywhere in need today of peace and protection. We continue to remember the victims of hurricanes, in Texas and Florida and especially the Caribbean, in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands and all islands dealing with the devestaing aftermath of these powerful storms. We pray for those who are responding, that their effort may be efficient and effective. Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.
Lord of the hurting, grant grace and peace to all who worry, those who have been made to feel inferior, the lonely aged, and the disheartened young. Grant meaningful work to the unemployed. Guide the lost and wandering to safe harbors. Bless those dear to this congregation who have asked for public prayers: Anna Bero, Phyllis Hahn, Claire Huehnerhoff, Mary Mehlum, Iris Schiffer, Vernette Rae, Corinne Riemer and Marilyn Van Brero. Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.
Lord of infinite hope, we all who have recently entrusted loved ones into your eternal care, especially Mark, Emily, and the family of Cheryl Buettemeier whose Memorial Service was held here yesterday; Denise Fuentes, our bookkeeper, at the passing of her mother last week; and all who mourn the death of a loved one. Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.
Into your hands, gracious God, we commend all for whom we pray, trusting the power of Christ and the gifts of the Spirit.
The Communion song at our Traditional service is O Master, Let Me Walk With You
On the night in which he was betrayed, our Lord Jesus took bread, and gave thanks; broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying: Take and eat; this is my body, given for you. Do this for the remembrance of me. Again, after supper, he took the cup, gave thanks, and gave it for all to drink, saying: This cup is the new covenant in my blood, shed for you and for all people for the forgiveness of sin. Do this for the remembrance of me.
All are welcome to receive Christ’s Body and Blood in the Bread and Wine of the Eucharist.
And because there’s always something going on, the Announcements!
ADULT FAITH FORMATION – Today we continue a Reformation-themed series, guided by Martin Luther’s Small Catechism (a copy of which will be provided to those who attend). This morning we begin our look at the Apostles’ Creed, continuing next Sunday. Up next: The Lord’s Prayer (October 15) and the Sacraments and Lutheran Worship (October 22). Adult Faith Formation will be on break October 29, as we enjoy Reformation Sunday and Oktoberfest. We meet from 10:15 to 10:55 am, in the Library. Please join us as together we “grow in faith!”
CHILDREN’S FAITH FORMATION – We invite kids ages 4-10 to join us in the Youth Room at 10:15 am. Our program is designed for children to be able to participate whenever they’re here, so drop-ins are welcome.
PAGETURNERS BOOKCLUB TOMORROW – We resume our gatherings after our summer break, meeting at 3 p.m. at Hildegard Schmidt’s house, 55 151st Place NE, Bellevue. Our book this month is Ron Chernow’s Alexander Hamilton. Anyone is welcome – call Hildegard at 425-747-5249 for more information.
INTERFAITH COVENANT COMMITTEE WEDNESDAY – beginning with a brown bag lunch at noon at Temple B’nai Torah. Topics include planning for our shared Thanksgiving Eve community gathering.
YD CONFIRMATION PROGRAM STARTS WEDNESDAY – We’ll meet First Wednesdays from 5 to 6:30 pm now through May. This year’s focus is Martin Luther’s Small Catechism. October’s study is the 10 Commandments Part 1 – Vertical Relationships. Healthy (mostly) snacks and super fun (always) games will be provided!
WELCA BIBLE STUDY LEADERS MEET THURSDAY – Pastor Dave leads a study to help Circle Leaders prepare to lead their groups. In the Conference Room from 10 to 11:15 am.
CONGREGATIONS FOR THE HOMELESS FUNDRAISING LUNCHEON THURSDAY – It is not too late to join other supporters at the 8th Annual CFH Luncheon, 11 am to 1 pm, Bellevue Presbyterian Church. This year’s theme is “Homelessness to Housed – Transforming Lives.” Jon Fine, President and CEO of United Way of King County, is the keynote speaker. Luncheon and parking are complimentary, but please bring a giving spirit. The suggested minimum donation is $150, but all gifts are appreciated. If attending and wanting to be seated with fellow members, please list Cross of Christ as the Table Captain. To learn more, RSVP online, or make a donation, visit www.cfhomeless.org. Any questions please contact Nadine Bentsen at email@example.com.
NW WASHINGTON SYNOD WOMEN’S ORGANIZATION CONVENTION SATURDAY – 7:30 am to 3:30 pm, at Trinity Lutheran, Lynnwood. Rev. Heidi Fish, pastor of Celebration Lutheran, Anacortes, will lead a Bible study, “Dancing Through the Waters,” focusing on Miriam’s story and Exodus 15:20. For more information or to register, please visit www.lutheransnw.org/synod-women.
REFORMATION BANNER PANEL PROJECT – Stop by and see it in the Narthex, just before you enter the West Wing hallway. It’s beautiful! Thanks to all who donated fabric to this project. Thanks also to the artists, Wanda Magee and Sandra Volkman. We want to be able to acknowledge all who donated. If you did, please check the sheet behind the Information Desk to ensure your name is there and correct. If it is not, please let Pastor Dave know – this is the last week to do so.
LECTORS NEEDED! – Reading from God’s Word in worship is a central part of Lutheran worship. Hearing the lessons read by many different voices ads both variety and vitality to our services. Lately we’ve had lots of openings for lectors. Would you be willing to read on an upcoming Sunday? Please go to our website www.crossofchristbellevue.org and click on the “Volunteer” tab to sign up. Also, beginning this week, there is a “low tech” option – a signup sheet at the Information Desk. Thank you.
LUTHERANS RESPONDING TO VICTIMS OF HURRICANES – Lutheran Disaster Response and its affiliates are collaborating with community leaders, government officials, and other non-profit agencies to respond to the massive needs – both immediate and long-term – created by recent hurricanes impacting Texas, Louisiana, Florida, and Puerto Rico. Gifts to Lutheran Disaster Response, designated for “Hurricane Response – United States” will be used entirely for these disasters. To learn more please visit the ELCA website at www.elca.org.
THANK YOU FROM BUETTEMEIERS – to any and all who helped make the Memorial Service and Reception for Cheryl special on Saturday. Many thanks to Gale Hill and the Special Services Reception Team; Ben Fowler, Nick Abbott, Cantorei Choir and guests for the wonderful music leadership; Judy Giseburt and the church staff; Pastor Dave; those who lent the beautiful Glassybaby candleholders for the reception; and all the members of Cross of Christ who were able to attend or were with us in spirit and in prayer.
Our sending song in our Mosaic service is O Worship the King
By God’s grace, through faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, we are called to
Grow in Faith
Share the Gospel
Serve others, and
Thanks be to God!