4 Advent December 18

CONFESSION AND FORGIVENESS

Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel,

who alone does wondrous things.

Blessed be God’s name forever. Amen.

Beloved, now is the time to wake from sleep.

Let us confront our sins,

and confess them to the one who is merciful and just.

Silence is kept for reflection.

God of new beginnings,

we confess that we have not welcomed your holy reign.

We have strayed from your paths.

We prepare for war instead of peace.

We dishonor one another and your creation.

Purify us with your refining fire

and set us again on your way of love,

that we may bear fruit worthy of repentance,

and welcome your coming among us.

Amen.

People of God, a new thing is growing in our midst,

a tender branch, a living sign.

By water and the Spirit you are joined to this wonder.

You have put on Christ,

and your sins have been washed away.

Rejoice in the way of the Lord.

Amen.

PRAYER OF THE DAY

Let us pray: Stir up your power, Lord Christ, and come. With your abundant grace and might, free us from the sin that hinders our faith, that eagerly we may receive your promises, for you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.


LIGHTING OF THE FOURTH ADVENT CANDLE

CANDLE LIGHTING LITANY AND PRAYER

Jesus Christ is the light of the world. The light no darkness can overcome.

Blessed are you, O Lord our God, ruler of the universe.

In your Son, Emmanuel, you have shown us your light and saved us from the power of sin.

Bless us as we light the candles on this wreath. Increase our longing for your presence, that at the celebration of your Son's birth his Spirit might dwell anew in our midst, for he is our light and our salvation.

Blessed be God forever. Amen

ADVENT HYMN “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel” #257

THE FIRST LESSON: Malachi 3:1-4

Again the LORD spoke to Ahaz, saying, Ask a sign of the LORD your God; let it be deep as See, I am sending my messenger to prepare the way before me, and the Lord whom you seek will suddenly come to his temple. The messenger of the covenant in whom you delight—indeed, he is coming, says the LORD of hosts. But who can endure the day of his coming, and who can stand when he appears?

For he is like a refiner’s fire and like fullers’ soap; he will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver, and he will purify the descendants of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, until they present offerings to the LORD in righteousness. Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasing to the LORD as in the days of old and as in former years

Word of God, word of life. Thanks be to God.

THE GOSPEL FOR THE DAY: Luke 1:57-80

The holy gospel according to Saint Luke. Glory to you, O Lord.

Now the time came for Elizabeth to give birth, and she bore a son. Her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown his great mercy to her, and they rejoiced with her.

On the eighth day they came to circumcise the child, and they were going to name him Zechariah after his father. But his mother said, “No; he is to be called John.” They said to her, “None of your relatives has this name.” Then they began motioning to his father to find out what name he wanted to give him. He asked for a writing tablet and wrote, “His name is John.” And all of them were amazed. Immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue freed, and he began to speak, praising God. Fear came over all their neighbors, and all these things were talked about throughout the entire hill country of Judea. All who heard them pondered them and said, “What then will this child become?” For, indeed, the hand of the Lord was with him.

Zechariah’s Prophecy

Then his father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke this prophecy:

“Blessed be the Lord God of Israel,

for he has looked favorably on his people and redeemed them.

He has raised up a mighty savior for us

in the house of his servant David,

as he spoke through the mouth of his holy prophets from of old,

that we would be saved from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us.

Thus he has shown the mercy promised to our ancestors,

and has remembered his holy covenant,

the oath that he swore to our ancestor Abraham,

to grant us that we, being rescued from the hands of our enemies,

might serve him without fear, in holiness and righteousness

before him all our days.

And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High;

for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways,

to give knowledge of salvation to his people

by the forgiveness of their sins.

By the tender mercy of our God,

the dawn from on high will break upon us,

to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death,

to guide our feet into the way of peace.”

The child grew and became strong in spirit, and he was in the wilderness until the day he appeared publicly to Israel.

The gospel of the Lord. Praise to you, O Christ.


The sermon did not record properly today.

HYMN OF THE DAY Joy to the World #267

NICENE CREED

We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, maker of heaven and earth,

of all that is, seen and unseen.

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father,

God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one Being with the Father; through him all things were made.

For us and for our salvation

he came down from heaven,

was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the virgin Mary

and became truly human.

For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;

he suffered death and was buried.

On the third day he rose again

in accordance with the scriptures;

he ascended into heaven

and is seated at the right hand of the Father.

He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead,

and his kingdom will have no end.

We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,

who proceeds from the Father and the Son,*

who with the Father and the Son is worshiped and glorified,

who has spoken through the prophets.

We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic church.

We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.

We look for the resurrection of the dead,

and the life of the world to come. Amen.

PRAYERS OF INTERCESSION

THE SIGN OF PEACE IS SHARED

The peace of Christ be with you always. And also with you.

OFFERING AND OFFERING PRAYER

Let us pray. God of abundance, we bring before you the precious fruits of your creation, and with them our very lives. Teach us patience and hope as we care for all those in need until the coming of your Son, our Savior and Lord. Amen.

THE LORD'S PRAYER

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name,

thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread;

and forgive us our trespasses

as we forgive those who trespass against us;

and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory,

forever and ever. AMEN

BLESSING

SENDING SONG “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” #270

SENDING

Go in peace. Live the gospel. Thanks be to God.

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