THE EPIPHANY OF OUR LORD (observed)
January 9, 2022

+ PREPARATION +

OPENING HYMN: #395 – O Morning Star, How Fair and Bright                     

INVOCATION
Pastor:            In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit.
People:          Amen.

OPENING SENTENCES      Isaiah 60:1, 5–6; Matthew 2:2, 10–11
Pastor:            Arise, shine, for your light has come.
People:          We saw His star when it rose and have come to worship Him.

Pastor:            You shall see and be radiant.
People:          They rejoiced exceedingly with great joy.

Pastor:            They shall bring good news, the praises of the Lord.
People:          And they fell down and worshiped Him.

CONFESSION AND ABSOLUTION           Psalm 124:8; 130:3, adapt.; Ephesians 3:11–12
Pastor:            Our help is in the name of the Lord,
People:          who made heaven and earth.

Pastor:            If You, O Lord, kept a record of sins, O Lord, who could stand?
People:          But with You there is forgiveness; therefore You are feared.

Pastor:            Although God has graciously showered the light of His love on us, we have not responded in lives of total devotion. But because He has graciously promised to forgive, let us go to Him in the name of “Christ Jesus our Lord, in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through our faith in Him.”
People:          Gracious heavenly Father, we confess that we have let the distractions of this world turn our eyes from seeing the true Light. We have not loved You with our whole hearts. Forgive us and renew in us hearts to see, follow, and worship You alone.

Pastor:            In the mercy of almighty God, our heavenly Father sent His Son to take to His cross all our sins, and His Holy Spirit has graciously shined the light of faith in Christ into our hearts. I therefore forgive you all your sins in the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit.
People:          Amen.

+ WORD +

PSALM  Psalm 72:1-11; antiphon: v. 18 (spoken responsively by verse)
1Give the king your justice, O God,
and your righteousness to the royal son!
2May he judge your people with righteousness,
            and your poor with justice!
3Let the mountains bear prosperity for the people,
and the hills, in righteousness!
4May he defend the cause of the poor of the people,
            give deliverance to the children of the needy,
            and crush the oppressor!
5May they fear you while the sun endures,
and as long as the moon, throughout all generations!
6May he be like rain that falls on the mown grass,
            like showers that water the earth!
7In his days may the righteous flourish,
and peace abound, till the moon be no more!
8May he have dominion from sea to sea,
            and from the River to the ends of the earth!
9May desert tribes bow down before him
and his enemies lick the dust!
10May the kings of Tarshish and of the coastlands
            render him tribute;
            may the kings of Sheba and Seba bring gifts!
11May all kings fall down before him,
all nations serve him!

KYRIE
Pastor:            In peace, let us pray to the Lord.
People:          Lord, have mercy.

Pastor:            For peace shining down on us from above and for the salvation of all people, let us pray to the Lord.
People:          Lord, have mercy.

Pastor:            For peace so that the Church of God would more brightly shine the light of the Gospel in the nations of the world, let us pray to the Lord.
People:          Lord, have mercy.

Pastor:            For all who join us here to thank God for the unsearchable riches of Christ, let us pray to the Lord.
People:          Lord, have mercy.

Pastor:             Help, save, comfort, and defend us, gracious Lord.
People:          Amen.

SALUTATION and PRAYER OF THE DAY
Pastor:            The Lord be with you.
People:          And also with you.

Pastor:            Let us pray.
O God, You led the Magi to see in the star the news of Christ’s birth. We give thanks that You have enabled us to see Him as our Savior. Grant us strength of faith to follow where He leads and to worship Him with all that we are and have; through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.
People:          Amen.

OLD TESTAMENT READING         Isaiah 60:1–6
(The Lord promises to visit His people as light, attracting other nations to His glory.)
1Arise, shine, for your light has come,
and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you.
2For behold, darkness shall cover the earth,
and thick darkness the peoples;
but the Lord will arise upon you,
and his glory will be seen upon you.
3And nations shall come to your light,
and kings to the brightness of your rising.
4Lift up your eyes all around, and see;
they all gather together, they come to you;
your sons shall come from afar,
and your daughters shall be carried on the hip.
5Then you shall see and be radiant;
your heart shall thrill and exult,
because the abundance of the sea shall be turned to you,
the wealth of the nations shall come to you.
6A multitude of camels shall cover you,
the young camels of Midian and Ephah;
all those from Sheba shall come.
They shall bring gold and frankincense,
and shall bring good news, the praises of the Lord.

Lector:            This is the Word of the Lord.
People:          Thanks be to God.

GRADUAL     Psalm 117:1–2a; 96:8
Praise the Lord, all nations!
Extol him, all peoples!
For great is his steadfast love toward us,
and the faithfulness of the Lord endures forever.
Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name;
bring an offering, and come into his courts!

EPISTLE         Ephesians 3:1–12     
(Paul rejoices in his calling to preach to the Gentiles.)
1For this reason I, Paul, a prisoner for Christ Jesus on behalf of you Gentiles— 2assuming that you have heard of the stewardship of God’s grace that was given to me for you, 3how the mystery was made known to me by revelation, as I have written briefly. 4When you read this, you can perceive my insight into the mystery of Christ, 5which was not made known to the sons of men in other generations as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit. 6This mystery is that the Gentiles are fellow heirs, members of the same body, and partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel.
7Of this gospel I was made a minister according to the gift of God’s grace, which was given me by the working of his power. 8To me, though I am the very least of all the saints, this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, 9and to bring to light for everyone what is the plan of the mystery hidden for ages in God who created all things, 10so that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. 11This was according to the eternal purpose that he has realized in Christ Jesus our Lord, 12in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through our faith in him.

Lector:            This is the Word of the Lord.
People:          Thanks be to God.

VERSE            Matthew 2:2b (spoken together)
Alleluia. Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him. Alleluia.

HOLY GOSPEL          Matthew 2:1–12                   
(The Magi are examples for our lives of faith.)
Pastor:             The Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew, the second chapter.
People:          Glory to You, O Lord.

            1Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, 2saying, “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” 3When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; 4and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born. 5They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for so it is written by the prophet:
6“‘And you, O Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;
for from you shall come a ruler
who will shepherd my people Israel.’”
7Then Herod summoned the wise men secretly and ascertained from them what time the star had appeared. 8And he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go and search diligently for the child, and when you have found him, bring me word, that I too may come and worship him.” 9After listening to the king, they went on their way. And behold, the star that they had seen when it rose went before them until it came to rest over the place where the child was. 10When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy. 11And going into the house they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh. 12And being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way.

Pastor:             This is the Gospel of the Lord.
People:          Praise to You, O Christ.

HYMN OF THE DAY: #409 – Hail, O Source of Every Blessing 

SERMON: God’s Word: Disturbing Message or Comforting Promise?

NICENE CREED
I believe in one God, the Father Almighty,
maker of heaven and earth
and of all things visible and invisible.

And in one Lord Jesus Christ,
the only-begotten Son of God,
begotten of His Father before all worlds,
God of God, Light of Light,
very God of very God,
begotten, not made,
being of one substance with the Father,
by whom all things were made;
who for us men and for our salvation came down from heaven
and was incarnate by the Holy Spirit of the virgin Mary
and was made man;
and was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate.
He suffered and was buried.
And the third day He rose again according to the Scriptures
and ascended into heaven
and sits at the right hand of the Father.
And He will come again with glory to judge both the living and the dead, whose kingdom will have no end.


And I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the Lord and giver of life,
who proceeds from the Father and the Son,
who with the Father and the Son together is worshiped and glorified,
who spoke by the prophets.
And I believe in one holy Christian and apostolic Church,
I acknowledge one Baptism for the remission of sins,
and I look for the resurrection of the dead
and the life + of the world to come. Amen.

PRAYER OF THE CHURCH
After each petition:
Pastor:     … Lord in Your mercy:
People:  Hear our Prayer.
At conclusion:
Pastor:     …through Jesus Christ, our Lord.
People:  Amen.

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.

CLOSING PRAYER
Pastor:            Let us pray.
O God, by the leading of a star You made known Your only-begotten Son to the Gentiles. Lead us, who know You by faith, to enjoy in heaven the fullness of Your divine presence; through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.
People:          Amen.

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.
People:          Amen.

DISMISSAL
Pastor:            Go in peace as you serve the Lord!
People:          Thanks be to God.

CLOSING HYMN: #397 – As with Gladness Men of Old

Creative Worship for the Lutheran Parish, Series C, Quarter 1. Copyright © 2021 Concordia Publishing House. All rights reserved. Used by permission.