Baptism of Our Lord
(First Sunday after Epiphany)
11 January 2015
THIS MORNING'S SONG'S OF PRAISE:
284, 55, 137, 239, 103.
FIRST BIBLE READING:
Genesis 1: 1-5 'In the beginning God creates light'
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.
Then God said, "Let there be light"; and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good; and God divided the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. So the evening and the morning were the first day.
SECOND BIBLE READING:
Acts 19: 1-7 'Paul baptises believers in Ephesus'
While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul took the road through the interior and arrived at Ephesus. There he found some disciples and asked them, "Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?"
They answered, "No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit."
So Paul asked, "Then what baptism did you receive?"
"John's baptism," they replied.
Paul said, "John's baptism was a baptism of repentance. He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus." On hearing this, they were baptised in the name of the Lord Jesus. When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied. There were about twelve men in all.
Mark 1: 4-11 'The baptism of Jesus'
And so John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. The whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem went out to him. Confessing their sins, they were baptised by him in the Jordan River.
John wore clothing made of camel's hair, with a leather belt around his waist, and he ate locusts and wild honey. And this was his message:
"After me comes the one more powerful than I, the straps of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie.
I baptise you with water, but he will baptise you with the Holy Spirit."
At that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptised by John in the Jordan. Just as Jesus was coming up out of the water, he saw heaven being torn open and the Spirit descending on him like a dove.
And a voice came from heaven: "You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased."
NOTES ON THE READINGS:
GENESIS 1: 1-5:
It is good for us to be reminded in the words of this reading that there is purpose in all of the creation, that it didn't just come about by blind chance. By his almighty word God has brought matter to be from nothing. He has ordered the universe out of chaos. Over against darkness he has brought light into being. Morning always follows evening. Our lives also make sense, despite the surrounding chaos and darkness.
ACTS 19: 1-7:
St Paul spent a fruitful two and a half years preaching and teaching in Ephesus. Early in this stay a remarkable incident occurred. He came across twelve 'disciples', believers in Christ, who had no knowledge of the Holy Spirit.
They had been baptised only with John the Baptist's preparatory baptism for repentance. After instruction, Paul baptised them in the name of Jesus. Together with the laying on of hands by Paul, they received the Holy Spirit in a very visible way. Congregations need constantly to instruct and equip members further where there are deficiencies in faith and life.
MARK 1: 4-11:
The first part of this selection deals with John (the Baptist) calling people to prepare for the long-expected Messiah. Hearts and lives are to be turned around completely in repentance. Baptism with water brought the cleansing of forgiveness. The second part of the selection describes the baptism of Jesus. He had no sin but took his place alongside sinners in this act. Immediately Jesus sees heavenly things; the witness of the Holy Spirit's presence for his earthly ministry becomes visible (the dove). The voice of the Father attests and approves Jesus' divine sonship.
Here is a clear revelation of the Trinity; yet the Triune God is always encountered through the Christ.
Bible readings for Sunday 18th January 2015:
1 Samuel 3: 1-20, 1 Corinthians 6: 12-20, John 1: 43-51
This week in the Lord's Service - 11th - 18th January:
1. Next Sunday - 9.30 am - Public Divine service - (With Holy- Communion).
2. Adelaide Hills Fire Appeal:
A flyer from the LCA National Office is now to hand in response to this week's fire devastation in the Adelaide Hills and how we as a Lutheran community may wish to financially support the victims and local
communities who suffered property and livestock losses by donating to the LCA Disaster and Welfare Fund. Although there were some injuries sustained,
It is understood there was no loss of human life for which we thank God.
The LCA D&WF is now receiving donations and anyone wishing to do so, should refer to the notice board near kitchen or take a flyer from the front foyer.
3. Re-cycled Christmas Cards:
A further reminder that if anyone has any Christmas cards no longer needed, these are being sought to re - cycle into puzzles for 'Operation Christmas Child'.
These might be kindly passed onto Peggy Werner.
4. Student Accommodation Needed!
As announced last Sunday. Natasha Leske, a 21 year old Christian studying medicine at Deakin University (Waurn Ponds) in 2015; is currently looking for somewhere to live; ideally in a share house or
boarding within walking distance to the Waurn Ponds campus. Natasha's home parish is St John's Lutheran Unley, Adelaide. Natasha plans to move to Geelong late January - (university begins 2nd February).
5. Church Duty Rosters - 2015:
For those members who serve in the various rostering and who do not have internet access, the upcoming church rosters from 25th January until 27th December, 2015, are now available from their respective church boxes to take home.
6. 'Grassroots' Training 2015:
Further reminder of a series of workshop training available , focusing on 'Spiritual Resilience' and 'Equipping for Leadership' to be held at St Paul's Lutheran Church, Box Hill in early March. For those interested, further information on how to register etc is available from the notice board.
Coming up for your diary:
Sunday 1st February - 'Festival of Thanksgiving'.
Friday 6th February - 9.30 am - Worship Team.
Tuesday 10th February - 7.00 pm - Church Council.
Sunday 15th February - Sunday school resumes.
Sunday 15th February - A.G.M. - (after worship).
Wednesday 18th February - 11.00 am Lenten mid - week worship service with Holy Communion, followed by fellowship morning tea. All welcome!!