Your July 30, Lectionary Resources
We utilize at least 3 of the Scripture Readings in our Resources for each week. 1 for the Sermon Text, 1 for the Opening Prayer, and 1 for the Call to Worship. Published weekly.
Lectionary Readings — Ninth Sunday after Pentecost, July 30, 2023
Gen. 29:15-28; Psalm 105:1-11,45b; Rom. 8:26-39; Matt. 13:31-33,44-52.
Call to Worship (based on Psalm 105:1-11,45b)
L: Come, let us sing to the Lord, share the tales of His wondrous works, and glorify His holy name!
P: We rejoice and seek the Lord's strength. We remember His miracles, His wonders, and His righteous judgments.
L: Our God is sovereign; His judgments are throughout the whole earth! He remembers His everlasting covenant.
P: We are the descendants of Abraham, His chosen ones, and the children of Jacob whom He loves.
L: Let us recall the wonders He has performed, His marvels, and the judgments He has pronounced.
P: Yes, He is the Lord our God! His judgments reach the ends of the earth.
L: He has remembered His covenant forever, the promise He ordained for a thousand generations.
P: Let us observe His precepts, keep His laws, and walk in His ways. Praise the Lord!
Opening Prayer (based on Matthew 13:31-33,44-52)
Let's bow our heads in prayer.
O Lord, our God, the Master Storyteller, who reveals the secrets of Your kingdom through parables of everyday life, we gather here to seek Your wisdom and understanding. In the hustle and bustle of our lives, it's easy to miss the small beginnings, the hidden treasures, the fine pearls that you offer us in every moment.
Lord, You speak to us about a mustard seed, tiny yet able to grow into a sheltering tree. We confess that too often we want the grand and the immediate, overlooking the small and gradual. But You remind us, Lord, that in the small and gradual, in the patience and perseverance, Your kingdom grows. May we nurture the seeds of faith You have planted in us, and trust that, in Your time and in Your way, they will bear fruit.
You tell us of leaven hidden in the meal, permeating every part until it rises into nourishing bread. God, permeate our hearts, our thoughts, and our actions with Your love. Let us be agents of Your leaven in the world, transforming our surroundings with Your goodness.
You reveal to us the joy of the man who found hidden treasure in the field, and the merchant who found the pearl of great price. They both gave all they had to gain something far more valuable. God, give us discernment to recognize the priceless nature of Your kingdom, and the willingness to forsake all else for its sake.
As we gather today, open our ears to hear Your voice, our eyes to see Your presence, and our hearts to know Your love. Teach us, like the wise scribe, to bring out of our treasure what is new and what is old. Let us be Your disciples, living out Your kingdom here on earth.
We pray all this in the name of Jesus, our Teacher and our Treasure. Amen.
Sermon Outline (based on Romans 8:8:26-39)
Purpose: to assure believers of the invincible love of God for them, made evident through the intercession of the Holy Spirit, the predetermined purpose God has for their lives, and the victory that they have over trials and tribulations through Christ Jesus. In a world where fear and uncertainty can often rule our minds, this sermon seeks to instill confidence and peace in the hearts of the listeners, reminding them of their firm place in God's eternal plan and the unbeatable strength that comes from being loved by the Creator of the universe.
Title: Unshakeable Assurance (Romans 8:26-39)
I. The Holy Spirit's Intercession (Romans 8:26-27)
A. Our Weakness and the Spirit's Strength (Romans 8:26)
The reality of our weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9-10)
The Spirit's help in our weakness (John 14:16-17)
B. The Spirit's Intercession (Romans 8:26-27)
The Spirit intercedes with unspoken groans (Ephesians 6:18)
The Spirit intercedes according to God's will (1 John 5:14)
II. The Promise of God's Purpose (Romans 8:28-30)
A. All Things Work Together for Good (Romans 8:28)
Trusting God's purpose in our circumstances (Proverbs 3:5-6)
The goodness of God's purpose for those who love Him (Jeremiah 29:11)
B. Predestined, Called, Justified, and Glorified (Romans 8:29-30)
God's foreknowledge and predestination (Ephesians 1:4-5)
Called, justified, and glorified in Christ (2 Timothy 1:9)
III. The Assurance of God's Love (Romans 8:31-39)
A. If God is For Us (Romans 8:31-34)
God's powerful advocacy for us (1 John 2:1)
Christ's death, resurrection, and intercession for us (Hebrews 7:25)
B. The Inseparability of Christ's Love (Romans 8:35-39)
Trials and tribulations cannot separate us from God's love (John 16:33)
The encompassing love of Christ (Ephesians 3:17-19)
Closing Thoughts: Regardless of the challenges we face - tribulation, distress, persecution, famine, nakedness, peril, or sword, we are always triumphant in Christ. Our identity in Christ and His indefatigable love for us are the ultimate sources of our victory. Therefore, we must stand firm in this assurance, knowing that we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.
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