Sixth Sunday of Easter
25 May 2014
THIS MORNING'S HYMN'S OF PRAISE:
119, Ps 66, 394, 128, 158(v 1, 4), 457.
FIRST BIBLE READING:
Acts 17: 22-31; 'Paul in Athens' (NIV)
Paul then stood up in the meeting of the Areopagus and said: 'People of Athens! I see that in every way you are very religious. For as I walked around and looked carefully at your objects of worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: TO AN UNKNOWN GOD. Now what you worship as something unknown I am going to proclaim to you.
'The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by hands. And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything, because he himself gives all people life and breath and everything else. From one man he made every nation of people, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that people would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us. "For in him we live and move and have our being". As some of your own poets have said, "We are his offspring".
'Therefore since we are God's offspring, we should not think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone - an image made by human design and skill. In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent.
For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to all people by raising him from the dead'.
SECOND BIBLE READING:
1 Peter 3: 13-22;
'Suffering for doing right' (NIV)
Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good? But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. 'Do not fear what they fear; do not be frightened'. But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behaviour in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.
It is better, if it is God's will, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil. For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive by the Spirit, through whom also he went and preached to the spirits in prison who disobeyed long ago when God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built. In it only a few people, eight in all, were saved through water, and this water symbolises baptism that now saves you also - not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a good conscience toward God. It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who has gone into heaven and is at God's right hand - with angels, authorities and powers in submission to him.
John 14: 15-21
'The promise of the Holy Spirit' (GNB)
Jesus said to his disciples:
'If you love me, you will obey my commandments. I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, who will stay with you forever. He is the Spirit, who reveals the truth about God. The world cannot receive him, because it cannot see him or know him. But you know him, because he remains with you and is in you.
'When I go, you will not be left all alone; I will come back to you. In a little while the world will see me no more, but you will see me; and because I live, you also will live. When that day comes, you will know that I am in the Father and that you are in me, just as I am in you.
'If you accept my commandments and obey them, you are the ones who love me. My Father will love those who love me; I too will love them and reveal myself to them'.
NOTES ON THE READINGS:
ACTS 17: 22-31:
While spending time in Athens, Paul had the opportunity to speak to the city's prestigious philosophical council, the Areopagus. Paul referred to an altar to an unknown god to introduce an explanation of the nature of the one transcendent true God. God can't be contained either by human buildings or artistic representations. He is the creator of all human beings and governs their lives and boundaries.
Coming from his hand of creation all people are answerable to his ultimate judgment, the truth of which is pledged by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.
1 PETER 3: 13-22:
Peter treats in this section the problems his readers will meet in persecution. While they would not necessarily deserve this suffering, it may well yet happen. However, there are always divine purposes of grace connected with persecution.
It affords believers the opportunity to defend their faith, thus making it known. Christ's suffering was according to the purposes of the Father and achieved a mighty result. Having patiently born his suffering, Christ was able to apply the triumph of his achievement by preaching to the spirits in prison. Christians have been linked to this triumph through the salvation which baptism gives and guarantees.
JOHN 14: 15-21:
When Jesus said, 'Keep my commandments' he was not referring just to a new set of rules, but saying that the disciples were to observe the love that permeates all the doing which flows from salvation. Both of these are a witness on his behalf to the world. The disciples will not be left on their own. The Holy Spirit will replace on a permanent basis the physical guiding presence of their beloved master.
Not only will the Spirit bestow the sense of certainty that Christ is with the Father, binding them to both, but also will move the disciples to express their love for the Lord in keeping his commandments.
Bible readings for Sunday 1st June:
Acts 1: 1-11, Ephesians 1: 15-23, Luke 24: 44-53.
1. This week in the Lord's Service - 25th - 1st June: Wednesday - Study on 'A Hearing Heart' continues
- 11.00 am at the church and 7.30 pm on Wednesday 4th June at the home of Phil and Dorothea Worpel, 235 Scenic Road, Highton.
Thursday - 2.30 pm - Worship service with Holy- Communion, followed by fellowship afternoon tea.
Friday - 9.30 am - Worship Team.
Saturday - 10.00 am - 11.00 am - 'Sing - along' time. 11.00 am to 12 noon - Choir practice.
Next Sunday - 9.30 am - Public Divine service - (Non- Holy Communion).
2. Open Day - G.L.C. - Sat. 31ST May:
Geelong Lutheran College are having an Open Day for prospective families between 10.00 am and 1.00 pm. on Saturday 31st May, 2014.
Presentations at 10.15 am, 11.00 am and 11.45 am.
Please see notice board near kitchen.
3. 175th Anniversary of Lutheran
schooling - Celebration Dinner :
As briefly mentioned last Sunday, 2014 marks the 175th anniversary of Lutheran schooling in Australia and 160 years since the first Lutheran
school in Grovedale. To celebrate this milestone, Geelong Lutheran College and St John's Lutheran School are planning a dinner commencing at 6.30
pm on Saturday June 21, 2014 at the Hopetoun Room, The Pier, Geelong. Tickets will be $55 per head for a 2 course meal and complimentary drink.
There is also going to be a Greater Geelong combined service at GLC on the Sunday morning (22nd June) at 9.30am.Steve Rudolph will dedicate
the new building to which all congregation members are invited. A morning tea will follow the service and the school will be open for viewing.
A worship service will also be held at 'Our Redeemer'.
4. RBC Ministries -'Our Daily Bread':
As previously, a number of free copies of June - August 'Our Daily Bread' devotional resource booklets are available from the front foyer to take
home. If members wish to subscribe to this booklet personally, how to 'sign up 'particulars are shown inside.
Coming up for your diary:
Parents please note: Sunday School is being held on 1st and 3rd Sunday of each month, unless publicised otherwise.
Tuesday 3rd June - 7.30 pm - Deacons.
Tuesday 10th June - 7.00 pm - Church Council.
Friday 13th June - 6.30 pm - YPQ&A.