4th August 2013

Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost
4 August 2013

101, 405, 357, 567.


Ecclesiastes 1: 2,12-14; 2: 18-23;

'Only in God does life have meaning'

It is useless, useless, said the Philosopher. Life is useless, all useless...
I, the Philosopher, have been king over Israel in Jerusalem. I determined that I would examine and study all the things that are done in this world. God has laid a miserable fate upon us. I have seen everything done in this world, and I tell you, it is all useless. It is like chasing the
Nothing that I had worked for and earned meant a thing to me, because I knew that I would have to leave it to my successor, and he might be wise, or he might be
foolish - who knows?
Yet he will own everything I have worked for, everything my wisdom has earned for me in this world. It is all useless. So I came to regret that I had worked so hard.
You work for something with all your wisdom,
knowledge, and skill, and then you have to leave it all to someone who hasn't had to work for it. It is useless, and it isn't right! You work and worry your way through life, and what do you have to show for it?
As long as you live, everything you do brings nothing but worry and heartache. Even at night your mind can't rest. It is all useless.


Colossians 3: 1-11
'The old life and the new'

You have been raised to life with Christ, so set your hearts on the things that are in heaven, where Christ sits on his throne at the right-hand side of God. Keep your minds fixed on things there, not on things here on earth. For you
have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
Your real life is Christ and when he appears, then you too
will appear with him and share his glory!
You must put to death, then, the earthly desires at work in you, such as sexual immorality, indecency, lust, evil passions, and greed (for greed is a form of idolatry).
Because of such things God's anger will come upon those who do not obey him.
At one time you yourselves used to live according to such desires, when your life was dominated by them.
But now you must get rid of all these things: anger, passion,
and hateful feelings. No insults or obscene talk must ever
come from your lips.
Do not lie to one another, for you have discarded the old nature with its habits and have put on the new nature. This is the new being which God, its Creator, is constantly renewing in his own image, in order to bring you to a full knowledge of himself.
As a result, there is no longer any distinction between
Gentiles and Jews, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarians, savages, slaves, and free people, but Christ is all, Christ is in all.


Luke 12: 13-21
'The parable of the rich fool'

A man in the crowd said to Jesus, 'Teacher, tell my brother to divide with me the property our father left us'.
Jesus answered him, 'My friend, who gave me the right to judge or to divide the property between you two?' And he went on to say to them all, 'Watch out and guard yourselves from every kind of greed; because a person's true life is not made up of the things he owns, no matter how rich he may be'.
Then Jesus told them this parable: 'There was once a rich man who had land which bore good crops. He began to think to himself, "I haven't anywhere to keep all my crops. What can I do? This is what I will do", he told himself; "I will pull down my barns and build bigger ones, where I will store the grain and all my other goods. Then I will say to myself, Lucky man! You have all the good things you need for many years.
Take life easy, eat, drink, and enjoy yourself!" But God said to him, "You fool! This very night you will have to give up your life; then who will get all these things you have kept for yourself?"'
And Jesus concluded, "This is how it is with those who pile up riches for themselves but are not rich in God's sight'.


ECCLESIASTES 1: 2,12-14; 2:18-23:
If what the world has to offer is the sum and substance, the be-all and end-all, of your existence, then all is futile, 'all is vanity.' Ecclesiastes, the writer of this book, seems terribly negative and defeatist.
Yet he is taking the ultimate destination of secularism (i.e. worldliness which possesses people) to show that anyone going down that path must finally finish up in nothingness.
Meaning and purpose for one's life can only be found in the context of knowing that everything is a gift from God and using it as such. Then one no longer works only for 'self' and what makes sense for 'self', but lives meaningfully with God.

Paul here challenges the Colossian Christians to become what in actual fact God in his grace has made them to be in Christ. 'You are', he says, 'raised with Christ, therefore let your thoughts and actions rise to the same level'. He tells them, though, that despite the heavenly life which is theirs, they are still living with the tensions of the fleshly life in the sinful world. If they have stripped off the clothing of the old sinful self, then they have put on Christ. That means putting to death those things that belong to the death God will inflict on the heathen world they have left. The sins that belong to the old self are not compatible with the clothing of righteousness they have put on in Christ. The importance of overcoming disturbing differences from social and gender distinctions fits well into this same categorisation.

LUKE 12: 13-21:
Other readings today have touched on the futility of allowing covetousness and greed to take control of one's life. The man who came to Jesus was not interested in the joy, peace and pardon which Jesus offered, but solely in his own financial predicament in an inheritance dispute. The fictitious story of the rich fool, which Jesus told as a parable, illustrates the false values of too many people. Riches are not wrong in themselves, but when one forgets the giver, one's stewardship responsibility, and the fact that riches cannot give life as God ordains it, one is left in futility and empty vanity at death. When faced with God's demanding judgment, true value lies in the treasures that are eternal. Why ignore them? They are, after all, God's own free gift.

Bible readings for Sunday 11th August:
Genesis 15: 1-6,
Hebrews 11: 1-3, 8-16,
Luke 12: 32-40

1. This week in the Lord's Service - 4th - 11th August:
This morning - after worship - Presentation of annual Safe Place Basic Awareness (Mandatory).
Wednesday - 11.00 am - Group Bible study sessions continue at the church.
Thursday - 1.30 pm - Ladies Fellowship Group.
Next Sunday - 9.30 am - Public Divine service.-(with Holy Communion).

2. 2012 European Travel s - DVD:
If anyone wishes to borrow a DVD of Pastor Lester and Deidre's 2012 European travels, please see Pastor Lester. Some free (standard or widescreen)
copies are still available from the front foyer.

3. 'Warrambui 'Internship 2014:
Find out more about the offer of internships to young people at Warrambui near Canberra, whose mission is to serve. Applications close 27th September, 2013
Please see notice board near kitchen for details.

4. 'Un-Finished Objects Camp' 2013:
Where: Araluen Lutheran Camp, Angelsea.
When: Friday 9th to Sunday 11th August.
Details of program, camping fees etc along with application form are available from notice board near kitchen.

5. 2013 Christian Life Week Camps:
The remaining two Christian Life Week Camps for young people 13 -18 years, theme "MeMe's"; are to be held at Tandara Camp, Hall's Gap; as follows:
Green: September 23rd - 27th,
Yellow: September 30th - October 4th.
More details are contained in the camper's and parent's letters along with registration forms are available from the front foyer. Please see notice board near kitchen.

6. Lutheran Media Ministry:
The 'Face to Face' radio and TV guide for August has been placed on the notice board near kitchen

Coming up for your diary:
Tuesday 13th August - 7.00 pm - Church Council.
Wednesday 14th August - 7.30 pm - Evening group Bible study sessions continue at the home of Clem and Gloria Schulze, 4 Elm Court, Waurn Ponds.
Friday 16th August - 9.30 am - Worship Team.
Sunday 18th August - 9.30 am - 'Bible Sunday'-
Guest: Kevin Fuller from the Gideon's. There will be a retiring offering that morning.
Tuesday 20th August - 12.30 pm - Kaffeestunde.