“God loves us all, both big and small,” a child’s verse declares. The sins of the world are covered. We are able to stand tall before God our righteous judge because in the person of Jesus “salvation has come to this house”—to our house today. In Christ Jesus God seeks us out to save us.
Serving this Week:
Communion: Betty B.
Reading: Dan O.
Usher: Dan O.
Communion Alter Care: Betty B.
Counter: Betty B.
Fellowship: April L.
Readings this week:
First Reading: Isaiah 1:10-18
Isaiah announces God’s displeasure with the offerings and sacrifices of a people who are without compassion. He urges them instead to do justice and defend the oppressed. Indeed, if they repent, the Lord promises, they will be made as clean as new-fallen snow.
10Hear the word of the Lord,
you rulers of Sodom!
Listen to the teaching of our God,
you people of Gomorrah!
11What to me is the multitude of your sacrifices?
says the Lord;
I have had enough of burnt offerings of rams
and the fat of fed beasts;
I do not delight in the blood of bulls,
or of lambs, or of goats.
12When you come to appear before me,
who asked this from your hand?
Trample my courts no more;
13bringing offerings is futile;
incense is an abomination to me.
New moon and sabbath and calling of convocation—
I cannot endure solemn assemblies with iniquity.
14Your new moons and your appointed festivals
my soul hates;
they have become a burden to me,
I am weary of bearing them.
15When you stretch out your hands,
I will hide my eyes from you;
even though you make many prayers,
I will not listen;
your hands are full of blood.
16Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean;
remove the evil of your doings
from before my eyes;
cease to do evil,
17learn to do good;
rescue the oppressed,
defend the orphan,
plead for the widow.
18Come now, let us argue it out,
says the Lord:
though your sins are like scarlet,
they shall be like snow;
though they are red like crimson,
they shall become like wool.
Psalm: Psalm 32:1-7
All the faithful will make their prayers to you in time of trouble. (Ps. 32:6)
1Happy are they whose transgressions | are forgiven,
and whose sin is | put away!
2Happy are they to whom the Lord im- | putes no guilt,
and in whose spirit there | is no guile!
3While I held my tongue, my bones with- | ered away,
because of my groaning | all day long.
4For your hand was heavy upon me | day and night;
my moisture was dried up as in the | heat of summer. R
5Then I acknowledged my sin to you, and did not con- | ceal my guilt.
I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord.” Then you forgave me the guilt | of my sin.
6Therefore all the faithful will make their prayers to you in | time of trouble;
when the great waters overflow, they | shall not reach them.
7You are my hiding-place; you preserve | me from trouble;
you surround me with shouts | of deliverance. R
Second Reading: 2 Thessalonians 1:1-4, 11-12
This letter of Paul begins with a typical salutation, blessing, and words of praise for what God is accomplishing among the recipients. By remaining faithful and growing spiritually during hardship, the Thessalonian Christians have become witnesses to the glory of God.
1Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy,
To the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ:
2Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
3We must always give thanks to God for you, brothers and sisters, as is right, because your faith is growing abundantly, and the love of every one of you for one another is increasing. 4Therefore we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God for your steadfastness and faith during all your persecutions and the afflictions that you are enduring.
11To this end we always pray for you, asking that our God will make you worthy of his call and will fulfill by his power every good resolve and work of faith, 12so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Gospel: Luke 19:1-10
Jesus encounters Zacchaeus, a rich man who is also a lost sinner. Moved by Jesus’ acceptance of him, Zacchaeus becomes a model of discipleship. In immediate response to being restored to God’s people, Zacchaeus ministers to the poor and seeks reconciliation with those whom he has wronged.
1[Jesus] entered Jericho and was passing through it.2A man was there named Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax collector and was rich. 3He was trying to see who Jesus was, but on account of the crowd he could not, because he was short in stature. 4So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore tree to see him, because he was going to pass that way. 5When Jesus came to the place, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, hurry and come down; for I must stay at your house today.” 6So he hurried down and was happy to welcome him. 7All who saw it began to grumble and said, “He has gone to be the guest of one who is a sinner.” 8Zacchaeus stood there and said to the Lord, “Look, half of my possessions, Lord, I will give to the poor; and if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I will pay back four times as much.” 9Then Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because he too is a son of Abraham. 10For the Son of Man came to seek out and to save the lost.”