Preparation for next week
Pentecost 8 – Proper 13
July 29-August 3, 2019
The theme for this coming week is “possessed by possessions”. In the Gospel lesson Jesus refuses to champion the cause of one who wants his inheritance and goes on to teach by a parable that in the pursuit of wealth one can lose one’s soul. In the Old Testament lesson, the theme of vanity is shown when a man works hard to accumulate wealth only to leave it to one who did not work for it. In the Epistle lesson Paul gives us a contrast between heavenly virtues and earthly vices which are to be shunned.
A Collect during Pentecost: O God, the Protector of all who trust in You, without whom nothing is strong and nothing is holy, increase and multiply Your mercy on us that with You as our Ruler and Guide we may so pass through things temporal that we lose not the things eternal; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, One God, now and forever.
Collect for Proper 13: O Lord, grant us wisdom to recognize the treasures You have stored up for us in heaven that we may never despair but always rejoice and be thankful for the riches of Your grace; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, One God now and forever.
For proper use of wealth: Almighty God, all that we possess is from Your loving hand. Give us grace that we may honor You with all we own, always remembering the account we must one day give to Jesus Christ our Lord.
For steadfast faith: Almighty God, our heavenly Father, because of Your tender love toward 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 the faith to the end and finally come to love everlasting; through Jesus Christ, our Lord.
Against the love of money: Almighty God, heavenly Father, You have called us to be Your children and heirs of Your gracious promises in Christ Jesus. Grant us Your Holy Spirit that we may forsake all covetous desires and the inordinate love of riches. Deliver us from the pursuit of passing things that we may seek the kingdom of Your Son and trust in His righteousness and so find blessedness and peace; through Jesus Christ, our Lord.
Monday, 29 July 2019—Psalm 49:7-8, 13-14a, 15; antiphon, Psalm 49:1-2 - God is the owner of the earth and all that is therein. In giving to God we merely return that which is His own. The vanity of life is explained in this psalm. Also this psalm teaches that death comes to all. This psalm is similar to Psalm 39. Psalm 49 is a meditation on life and death. A typical piece of wisdom on life’s inequalities. At the end of the line death waits for the materialist not even he can buy himself off. The “moral” of the psalm is similar to that of Jesus’ parable of the rich man found in Sunday’s gospel.
Generally speaking the psalmists have no clear concept of life after death and verse 15 is therefore often taken as a reference to premature death. But this undermines the reasoning, which requires ironing out of this life’s inequalities beyond the grave.
Tuesday, 30 July 2019—Psalm 100— Praise God. His mercy endures forever, and His faithfulness to all generations. “The Lord is God” and “The Lord is Good” Let the whole earth sing and be glad.
Wednesday, 31 July 2019—Ecclesiastes 1:2, 12-14, 2:18-26— The vanity of accumulating wealth and leaving it to one who did not work for it. To get property, financial security, and a sizable nest-egg, one usually must work hard and long for it, unless he inherited a fortune. To get ahead financially, a husband may work night and day, hold more than one job, and his wife may work, too.
The question must often come to these people’s minds: Is it worth the work? Are our material desires and standards too high? Are we missing out on the better things of life by giving all our time and effort to making money? Our lesson speaks to these questions.
Thursday, 01 August 2019—Colossians 3:1-11— A Christian seeks to acquire heavenly virtues and shuns earthly vices. Many live according to earthly values. Usual folks walk with heads down, seeing worldly things, and thinking negative thoughts.
A Christian lives with his feet planted in two worlds – in this world of materials and vices, and in a higher world of heavenly values where Christ is. Since Christ has ascended, we on earth look to Him for our values, goals, and ideals while on earth. Our lives are impoverished by preoccupation with worldly values leading us into negative thoughts and wicked actions. The wagon of life needs to be hitched to the star of Christ.
Friday, 2 August 2019—Luke 12:13-21— The parable of the rich fool. Jesus said, “A man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.” If it does not consist of material goods, of what does life consist? Most people feel that money is the key to real living. After winning the Irish Sweepstakes, a woman exclaimed, “Now I’m going to start living!” People need to know what makes life worthwhile.
Saturday, 3 August 2019 – Psalm 143:8 – The hymn of the week is “All Depends on Our Possessing” (LSB 732). This much loved hymn is best summed up in stanza three. Contemplate its impact in light of the readings for the week, “Many spend their lives in fretting over trifles and in getting things that have no solid ground. I shall strive to win a treasure that will bring me lasting pleasure and that now is seldom found.”
Prayers from Lutheran Service Book © 2006 Concordia Publishing House
Collect for Tenth Sunday after Pentecost from Lutheran Worship © 1980 Concordia Publishing House
LECTIONARY PREACHING WORKBOOK SERIES C John Brokhoff © 1979 CSS Publishing, Lima, OH