ADVENT CONFESSION AND FORGIVENESS
In the name of the Father, and the + Son, and the Holy Spirit.
The Lord of Advent calls us to be watchful for his coming, keeping our lamps lighted, and our hearts clean. Therefore let us confess to the Lord.
Silence for reflection.
To you, O God,
we lift up our souls.
You know us through and through; we confess our sins to you.
Remember not our sins; remember us with your steadfast love.
Show us your ways; teach us your paths; and lead us in justice and truth,
for the sake of your goodness in Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.
God sent his Son, the Babe of Bethlehem, to show his infinite love and forgiveness for all. Your sins are forgiven in the name of + Jesus Christ who came and will come again. Amen
PRAYER OF THE DAY
Let us pray. Stir up your power, Lord Christ, and come. By your merciful protection awaken us to the threatening dangers of our sins, and keep us blameless until the coming of your new day, for you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
LIGHTING OF THE ADVENT CANDLE
Jesus Christ is the Light of the world,
The light no darkness can overcome.
Let your light scatter the darkness,
and shine on your people.
The Lord be with you.
And also with you.
Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
It is right to give our thanks and praise.
We praise you, O God, as we prepare for Christ’s advent.
As we light the candle on this wreath, kindle within us the fire of your Spirit,
that we may be light shining in the darkness.
Enlighten us with your grace, that we may welcome others as you have welcomed us.
Grant this through Christ our Lord, whose coming is certain and whose day draws near. Amen
THE FIRST LESSON: Jeremiah 33:14–16
The days are surely coming, says the LORD, when I will fulfill the promise I made to the house of Israel and the house of Judah. In those days and at that time I will cause a righteous Branch to spring up for David; and he shall execute justice and righteousness in the land. In those days Judah will be saved and Jerusalem will live in safety. And this is the name by which it will be called: "The LORD is our righteousness." Word of God, word of life. Thanks be to God.
To you, O LORD, I lift up my soul. My God, I put my trust in you;
let me not be put to shame, nor let my enemies triumph over me.
Let none who look to you be put to shame; rather let those be put to shame who are treacherous.
Show me your ways, O LORD, and teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; in you have I trusted all the day long.
Remember, O LORD, your compassion and love, for they are from everlasting.
Remember not the sins of my youth and my transgressions; remember me according to your steadfast love and for the sake of your goodness, O LORD.
You are gracious and upright, O LORD therefore you teach sinners in your way.
You lead the lowly in justice and teach the lowly your way.
All your paths, O LORD, are steadfast love and faithfulness to those who keep your
covenant and your testimonies.
THE SECOND LESSON: 1 Thessalonians 3:9–13
How can we thank God enough for you in return for all the joy that we feel before our God because of you? Night and day we pray most earnestly that we may see you face to face and restore whatever is lacking in your faith.
Now may our God and Father himself and our Lord Jesus direct our way to you. And may the Lord make you increase and abound in love for one another and for all, just as we abound in love for you. And may he so strengthen your hearts in holiness that you may be blameless before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his saints.
Word of God, word of life. Thanks be to God.
THE GOSPEL FOR THE DAY: Luke 21:25–36
The holy gospel according to Saint Luke. Glory to you, O Lord.
There will be signs in the sun, the moon, and the stars, and on the earth distress among nations confused by the roaring of the sea and the waves. People will faint from fear and foreboding of what is coming upon the world, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Then they will see 'the Son of Man coming in a cloud' with power and great glory. Now when these things begin to take place, stand up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near."
Then he told them a parable: "Look at the fig tree and all the trees; as soon as they sprout leaves you can see for yourselves and know that summer is already near. So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that the kingdom of God is near. Truly I tell you, this generation will not pass away until all things have taken place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. Be on guard so that your hearts are not weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and the worries of this life, and that day does not catch you unexpectedly, like a trap. For it will come upon all who live on the face of the whole earth. Be alert at all times, praying that you may have the strength to escape all these things that will take place, and to stand before the Son of Man."
The gospel of the Lord. Praise to you, O Christ.
SERMON “The Days Are Surely Coming” Pastor Phil Wold