Time in the Word
January 11-16, 2016
Preparation for Epiphany 2
Collect for the Baptism of our Lord – Father in heaven, at the Baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River You proclaimed Him Your beloved Son and anointed Him with the Holy Spirit. Make all who are baptized in His name faithful in their calling as Your children and inheritors with Him of everlasting life; through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, One God, now and forever. Amen
Collect for the likeness of Christ—O God, by the patient suffering of Your only-begotten Son; You have beaten down the pride of the old enemy. Now help us, we humbly pray, rightly to treasure in our hearts all that our Lord has of His goodness born for our sake that after His example we may bear with patience all that is adverse to us; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
A prayer for steadfast faith–Almighty God, our heavenly Father, of Your tender love towards us sinners You have given us Your Son that, believing in Him, we might have everlasting life. Continue to grant us Your Holy Spirit that we may remain steadfast in this faith to the end and come to life everlasting. .
A prayer for newness of life in Christ–Almighty God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness and put upon ourselves the armor of life, now in the time of this mortal life, in which Your Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility, that in the last day, when He shall come again in glory to judge both the living and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal.
A prayer for Home and Family–Visit, we implore You, O Lord, the homes in which Your people dwell, and keep far from them all harm and danger. Grant us to dwell together in peace under the protection of Your holy angels, and may Your blessing be with us forever; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
The Theme for Epiphany 2, “God’s Glory Manifested In Transforming Power,” can be seen in all three lessons for the week. In the Old Testament lesson God marries His people. God will transform Jerusalem from desolation to delight. In the Epistle lesson The Sprit transforms from “Jesus be cursed” to “Jesus is Lord!” Here the gifts of the Spirit will be outlined for us. In the Gospel lesson, the wedding at Cana, Christ transforms water into wine. Here He manifests His glory and His disciples put their faith in Him.
Collect for Epiphany 2 – Almighty and Everlasting God, who governs all things in heaven and on earth, mercifully hear the prayers of Your people and grant us Your peace through all our days; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God now and forever.
Monday, 11 January 2016—Psalm 36:5:9, Antiphon, Song of Solomon 2:4—The Lord brought me to the banqueting house, and His banner over me was love. See also Numbers 2:2 and Psalm 20:5 – The king’s love for his bride is displayed for all to see like a large military banner. So is the Father’s love for you. Great is His faithfulness.
Tuesday, 12 January 2016—Psalm 128; key verse, verse 5—May the Lord bless you from Zion all the days of your life; may you see the prosperity of Jerusalem. The blessedness of the godly man is the theme for this week’s psalm. It is another word for wisdom concerning hearth and home. The key verse is thought to be a Levitical or priestly benediction or a word of instruction to those assembled from their homes coming to worship at Jerusalem,
Wednesday, 13 January 2016—Isaiah 62:1-5–Isaiah uses the analogy of marriage to express the relationship of Judah to God. He marries His people, His land. It is not the first marriage for God. Like Hosea, He takes His people back again and again. He remarries His people to Himself. What does this say about God’s attitude toward His people? God loves His people “The Lord delights in you” (verse 4). God make His people new – they take, like a bride takes her husband’s name, His name: “You shall be called My delight is in her” (verse 4). God rejoices over His people, “So shall your God rejoice over you” (verse 5). God and His land make a happy couple.
Thursday, 14 January 2016—1 Corinthians12:1-11–Can we be different and yet one? The church has always been threatened with divisions. It happened in the 1st Century; it happens today in the 21st Century. To have peace and unity, must all church members agree and be alike? According to the text, the church is unique in that she can have unity with diversity. This unity is the same Spirit in all, but there is a variety of gifts from the one Spirit. As long as there is one good, sweet spirit in a congregation, it is a blessing for the church to have a diversity of gifts.
Friday, 15 January 2016–John 2:1-1–The custom is to prepare an invitation list for a wedding. The invitation signifies you are important to the one inviting you. It indicates further that you are wanted. The unknown couple in the Gospel put Jesus on their invitation list. And they could be glad they did! Jesus honors them with His presence. He met their needs of wine. He saved the reception from failure. Have you invited Jesus to come into your marriage, your work, your life?
For many, life is empty. Our lives may be as empty as the stone jars. When we come to Jesus, as Mary did, for help, Jesus not only fills us up to the brim, but gives us an excess. The six stone jars provided 120 – 180 gallons of wine! Note, too, the generosity of Jesus in feeding the 5,000 – twelve baskets were left over. Jesus is able not only to meet our needs, but to exceed them.
Just like the Nike commercial, Mary told the servants to do whatever Jesus told them to do. “Just do it!” She had learned to respect His words. If the servants had not obeyed, there would have been no wine out of water. A miracle will take place in our lives when we “do whatever He tells us.” To obey is a test of faith when the command seems illogical and ridiculous. The need was wine and Jesus commands getting water! He has other seemingly illogical demands: “Give and it shall be given you,” “He who loses his life shall find it.”
Saturday, 16 January 2016—Matthew 2:1-12; Ephesians 1:9; John 18:26-27; John 1:29 - Sunday’s hymn of the day is The Star Proclaims the King Is Here (399 LSB). This is yet another wonderful Epiphany hymn. Despite outward conditions, nothing will change concerning God’s dealings with His people. As the Wise Men were directed to find the infant Lord Jesus, so to this day the Lord will make His presence known to you as He comes through His means of grace. This is how He chooses to communicate to you – in tangible ways. Not in myth, not in the spectacular or the supernatural but through simple means. Wise men still seek Him. Look for Him in those places He has promised He will be found.
Prayers from Lutheran Service Book © 2006 and Lutheran Worship © 1980 Concordia Publishing House
Schnorr Von Carolsfeld woodcuts © WELS permission granted for personal and congregational use
Lectionary Preaching Workbook Series C – John Brokhoff © 1979 CSS Publishing, Lima, OH