A digital version of this week’s worship bulletin and sermon.

Gathering

PRELUDE

CONGREGATIONAL WELCOME

Thanksgiving for Baptism

Gathering Song            “Let Streams of Living Justice”          red book # 710

GREETING

KYRIE                                                                            red book page 184 (set 8)

Canticle of Praise                                                        red book page 187 (set 8)

PRAYER of the DAY

Word

MICAH 6:1-8

PSALM 15

1 CORINTHIANS 1:18-31

MATTHEW 5:1-12

SERMON                                                                         Pastor Chris Halverson

Law Court

1.

Here ye, here ye!

The Court Case, entitled Micah 6:8: Lord God v. The People, is ready for jury selection.

You are all called to jury duty!

Yes, you, and you, and you!

And you, here, church building, roof made from solemn and just trees, walls of stone and cement foundations.

You, little hills and Washington Rock!

You deer family and Raritan River—you Atlantic Ocean and majestic continents.

All that has a voice, hear God’s case.

All that lives and moves and has its being, hear the accusation the LORD God has against the people, listen with great granite ears to the controversy o’ Earth!

 

  1. “O my people, what have I done to you? In what way have I wearied you? Answer me and I will be satisfied!

For the earth I enveloped with atmosphere, the water with hydrogen bonds and formed you all from carbon and other stuff! From the humus I made humans!

I rescued Noah and revealed myself to Abraham and kept faith with him when he traveled from Ur to Israel.

I brought you up from the land of Egypt, and redeemed you from the house of slavery; and I sent before you Moses, Aaron, and Miriam.

I made promise after promise to you.

I infused my prophets with hopes and dreams for your sake!

Mary brought you and I eye to eye, I came to you, Word made flesh.

When you are poor in spirit and mourning—I dwell with you.

When you are meek or hungry and thirsty for righteousness, I fill you!

When I see mercy, purity, peace, righteousness to the point of persecution and revilement—I enter into your life and reign in it for your sake!

In short, I have saved you at every turn and continue to!

And you seem not to care! You do not live like the Kingdom of Heaven is real.

 

  1. What then do you want from us then? Shall we grovel?

Should I scrape my face against the pavement? Sacrifice goats until they call me Billy the kid? Or even cows… send a herd to the slaughter for your sake? Pour oil on an altar until it looks like the Exxon-Valdez oil spill?

Or how about humans? Shall we offer the next generation, to make You happy?

That’s all rather impractical though… we’re modern right? We can do better, right?

What if I spent my whole life in service of You? Or built up an institution for Your sake? Or built grand cathedrals to the sky and in my soul for your sake, God?

What if I gathered every ounce of wit and will that I have and pointed it at the problem of finding You, would You then be satisfied?

What if I built a neon sign the size of Saturn that pointed to you?

What if I gathered power and influence around me, raised myself up by sheer willpower and guts, to the pinnacle of our society and made sure Your name was praised on every street corner and household? Would that be enough for You?

 

  1. Has he not told you O mortals, what is good; what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?

You are called to do justice—

That is, work in your self, and among your whole society, to make sure impartiality and fairness is for everyone, especially those who have been left out.

You are called to love kindness—

I know, it sounds weak, and doesn’t get much traction, treating people like you’d like to be treated, even if they don’t reciprocate, being the bigger person and building people up even when they are in tear down mode—but I promise is you it is your calling.

You are called to walk humbly with your God—

Because you know what? Nothing you can do, will do it, will make me love you.

I loved you when you acted the fool, when you were puny, a loser, and not a soul would look you in your eyes.

I just wish you’d show the same kind of courtesy to other people that I’ve shown you.

Notice the poor and mourning, the meek, those sincerely seeking righteousness… the persecuted and reviled, the peaceful, pure, and merciful

If you really want to find me… be among them… because that’s where I am, just as I was for you.

A+A

HYMN of the DAY                   “When the Poor Ones”                   red book # 725

APOSTLES CREED

PRAYERS of INTERCESSION

PEACE

Meal

OFFERING

OFFERTORY ANTHEM                         “God Will Hear Your Prayer”

GREAT THANKSGIVING

A MOMENT OF THANKFUL REFLECTION

LORD’S PRAYER

COMMUNION SONGS                       “Lamb of God”

Also, “Let There Be Peace On Earth”, red book # 728, red book # 720.

Sending

BLESSING

ANNOUNCEMENTS

SENDING SONG              “The Spirit Sends Us Forth to Serve”              red book # 551

DISMISSAL

POSTLUDE                  “Hymn Improvisation”                  by Tom Baker

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