FIRST SUNDAY IN LENT
February 21, 2021
We Can Give Everything to God because He’s Already Given Everything to Us
“By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises was in the act of offering up his only son, of whom it was said, ‘Through Isaac shall your offspring be named.’ He considered that God was able even to raise him from the dead, from which, figuratively speaking, he did receive him back” (Hebrews 11:17–19). The writer to the Hebrews makes such a beautiful statement about something that must have been literally gut-wrenching for Abraham. Losing a loved one is hard. Losing a child is incredibly hard. But being asked to sacrifice your one and only son? It seems unfathomable. Yet, this presents a poignant truth for us—when everything looks so wrong, God provides by keeping His promises for us and by being with us.
Use the scroll bar on the right side of the window below to read along with the service.
+ PREPARATION +
HYMN: O Lord, throughout These Forty Days
Pastor: In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit.
OPENING SENTENCES (Mark 14:38; 1 Peter 5:8; 1 Corinthians 10:12–13)
Pastor: Jesus said, “Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
People: Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.
Pastor: Therefore let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall. No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man.
People: 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.
CONFESSION AND ABSOLUTION (Romans 6:20, 22–23, adapted; Mark 1:15)
Pastor: God’s Word reminds us that when we were slaves of sin, we were free in regard to righteousness.
People: But now that we have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit we get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life.
Pastor: For the wages of sin is death,
People: but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Pastor: Let us confess our sins to God, who has brought us out of slavery and promises to lead us to the promised land of heaven.
A moment for silent confession.
Pastor: Heavenly Father, we know we are blessed when we remain steadfast under trial, yet we fall prey to the devil’s schemes and give in to temptation. We are lured and enticed by our own evil desires—desires that contradict your good and gracious will.
People: For Jesus’ sake, forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
Pastor: As Jesus began His ministry, He said, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.” As you have repented of your sins, believe these words as if Jesus was standing here speaking them to you: I forgive you all your sins in the name of the Father and of the X Son and of the Holy Spirit.
+ SERVICE OF THE WORD +
PSALM (spoken responsively) Psalm 25:1–10
1To you, O Lord,
I lift up my soul.
2O my God, in you I trust;
let me not be put to shame;
let not my enemies exult over me.
3Indeed, none who wait for you shall be put to shame;
they shall be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous.
4Make me to know your ways, O Lord;
teach me your paths.
5Lead me in your truth and teach me,
for you are the God of my salvation;
for you I wait all the day long.
6Remember your mercy, O Lord, and your steadfast love,
for they have been from of old.
7Remember not the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
according to your steadfast love remember me,
for the sake of your goodness, O Lord!
8Good and upright is the Lord;
therefore he instructs sinners in the way.
9He leads the humble in what is right,
and teaches the humble his way.
10All the paths of the Lord are steadfast love and faithfulness,
for those who keep his covenant and his testimonies.
Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be forever. Amen.
KYRIE (James 1:18; Psalm 102:1, adapted)
Pastor: Lord, have mercy.
People: Christ, have mercy.
Pastor: Lord, have mercy.
People: Of His own will He brought us forth by the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures.
Pastor: O Lord, hear our prayer.
People: And let our cry come to You!
SALUTATION and PRAYER OF THE DAY
Pastor: Let us pray.
You promised Abraham that his descendants would be as numerous as the stars in the sky, and then you asked him to sacrifice his only son. You provided a ram as a substitute sacrifice. Open our eyes to how You provide for us, especially in tough times when everything looks so wrong. Empower us to hold tightly to the promises that are “yes” for us through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.
OLD TESTAMENT READING Genesis 22:1–18
(God tested Abraham.)
1After these things God tested Abraham and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here am I.” 2He said, “Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.” 3So Abraham rose early in the morning, saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him, and his son Isaac. And he cut the wood for the burnt offering and arose and went to the place of which God had told him. 4On the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes and saw the place from afar. 5Then Abraham said to his young men, “Stay here with the donkey; I and the boy will go over there and worship and come again to you.” 6And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering and laid it on Isaac his son. And he took in his hand the fire and the knife. So they went both of them together. 7And Isaac said to his father Abraham, “My father!” And he said, “Here am I, my son.” He said, “Behold, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?” 8Abraham said, “God will provide for himself the lamb for a burnt offering, my son.” So they went both of them together.
9When they came to the place of which God had told him, Abraham built the altar there and laid the wood in order and bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood. 10Then Abraham reached out his hand and took the knife to slaughter his son. 11But the angel of the Lord called to him from heaven and said, “Abraham, Abraham!” And he said, “Here am I.” 12He said, “Do not lay your hand on the boy or do anything to him, for now I know that you fear God, seeing you have not withheld your son, your only son, from me.” 13And Abraham lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, behind him was a ram, caught in a thicket by his horns. And Abraham went and took the ram and offered it up as a burnt offering instead of his son. 14So Abraham called the name of that place, “The Lord will provide”; as it is said to this day, “On the mount of the Lord it shall be provided.”
15And the angel of the Lord called to Abraham a second time from heaven 16and said, “By myself I have sworn, declares the Lord, because you have done this and have not withheld your son, your only son, 17I will surely bless you, and I will surely multiply your offspring as the stars of heaven and as the sand that is on the seashore. And your offspring shall possess the gate of his enemies, 18and in your offspring shall all the nations of the earth be blessed, because you have obeyed my voice.”
Lector: This is the Word of the Lord.
People: Thanks be to God.
GRADUAL Hebrews 12:2
O come, let us fix our eyes on Jesus,
the founder and perfecter of our faith,
who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame,
and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.
EPISTLE James 1:12–18
(The path temptation treads)
12Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. 13Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. 14But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. 15Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.
16Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers. 17Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. 18Of his own will he brought us forth by the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.
Lector: This is the Word of the Lord.
People: Thanks be to God.
VERSE (spoken together) (Ephesians 6:11)
Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil.
HOLY GOSPEL Mark 1:9–15
(Jesus is baptized and sent to be tempted.)
Pastor: The Holy Gospel according to St. Mark, the first chapter.
People: Glory to You, O Lord.
9In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. 10And when he came up out of the water, immediately he saw the heavens opening and the Spirit descending on him like a dove. 11And a voice came from heaven, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.”
12The Spirit immediately drove him out into the wilderness. 13And he was in the wilderness forty days, being tempted by Satan. And he was with the wild animals, and the angels were ministering to him.
14Now after John was arrested, Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the gospel of God, 15and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.”
Pastor: This is the Gospel of the Lord.
People: Praise to You, O Christ.
HYMN OF THE DAY: O Christ, You Walked the Road
SERMON: We Can Give Everything to God because He’s Already Given Everything to Us
I believe in God, the Father Almighty,
maker of heaven and earth.
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.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy Christian Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life + everlasting. Amen.
PRAYER OF THE CHURCH
After each petition:
Pastor: … Lord, in Your mercy:
People: hear our prayer.
Pastor: … and the Holy Spirit, one God forever.
LORD’S PRAYER Matthew 6:9–13
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: Let us pray.
O Lord God, You led Your ancient people through the wilderness and brought them to the Promised Land. Guide the people of Your Church that following our Savior we may walk through the wilderness of this world toward the glory of the world to come; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.
BENEDICTION (Numbers 6:24–26)
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.
HYMN: Jesus, Lead Thou On
Creative Worship for the Lutheran Parish, Series B, Quarter 2.
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