MALAGASY LUTHERAN CHURCH
Communion’s prayer, 8th Sunday after Trinity
Week from 23rd to 28th July 2018
„The true worshiper“
Introduction: The meaning of „true worshiper“ is multiple. In plain language, a true worshiper is a person who prays with a sincere and upright heart. This is also the case of those who pray with „a pure heart“, for they have gone through repentance and justification by God, like the tax collector who beat his breast and said: „God, have mercy on me, a sinner“ Lk 18:13. The „upright heart“ in God’s sight is that of the sinner who has been forgiven and who forgives, so that there is no distance in his relationship with God. Jesus said: „Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God“ Mt 5:8. In this sense, the prayer made with a pure heart will undoubtedly be directed to God, who will give ear and justify it. Therefore it will be source of blessing for its author, just as He declared: „so if you faithfully obey the commands I am giving you today – to love the Lord your God and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul – then I will send rain on your land in ist season , both autumn and spring rains, so that you may gather in your grain, new wine and oil. I will provide grass in the fields for your cattle, and you will eat and be satisfied“ Deu 11:13-15. Such is the expression of true prayer, which caused Jesus’s disciples to ask Him, saying: „Lord, teach us to pray“ Lk 11:1b. According to the Bible, the Word of truth, according to God’s instruction (Jn 17:17), the „true worshipers“ are those „without deceit or hypocrisy“. Those who do such things were rebuked by Jesus in these terms: „You belong to your father, the devil“ Jn 8:44. Therefore, they will have no part in the kingdom of God. For „what fellowship can light have this darkness? What harmony is there between Christ and Belial? What does a believer have in common with an unbeliever?“ 2 Cor 6:14b-15a. In evangelical terms, a „true worshiper“ is the one who prays with faith (Mt 21:22), which means that he is founded in the Word of God and relies on Him. Jesus said: „If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you“ Jn 15:7.
Monday 23: God is on the side of the true worshiper.
„I am with you to rescue and save you“ Jer 15:20d.
Reading 1: Rom 8:31-37; Reading 2: Jer 15:19-21; Preaching 1 (free choice); Preaching 2: Jer 15:20. Other references:
– „This is what the Lord says: ‚In the time of my favor I will answer you, and in the day of salvation I will help you“ Is 49:8.
– „For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their prayer, but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil“ 1 Pet 3:12.
Tuesday 24: The true worshiper overcomes falsehood.
“You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them” 1 Jn 4:4a.
Reading 1: Mt 7:15-21; Reading 2: 1 Jn 4:1-6; Preaching 1 (free choice); Preaching 2: 1 Jn 4:4. Other references:
– “The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God” 2 Cor 10:4-5.
– “For everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith” 1 Jn 5:4.
Wednesday 25: The true worship that God requires.
“God is Spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth” Jn 4:24.
Reading 1: Is 55:6-7; Reading 2: Jn 4:16-24; Preaching 1 (free choice); Preaching 2: Jn 4:23-24. Other references:
– “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart” Jer 29:13.
– “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled” Mt 5:6.
Thursday 26: God admnonishes the false worshippers.
“These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me” Mk 7:6.
Reading 1: Js 1:19-25; Reading 2: Mk 7:5-15; Preaching 1 (free choice); Preaching 2: Mk 7:6-7. Other references:
– “Woe to you, teachers of law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You shut the kingdom of heaven in men’s faces. You yourselves do not enter, nor will you let those enter who are trying to” Mt 23:13.
– “Then Peter said: ‘Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land? … When Ananias heard this, he fell down and died” Acts 5:3-5.
Friday 27: God gives ear to the repentant worshiper.
“Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin” Ps 51:2.
Reading 1: 1 Jn 1:5-10. Reading 2: Ps 51:1-6; Preaching 1 (free choice); Preaching 2: Ps 51:2. Other references:
– “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turned from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land” 2 Chr 7:14.
– “I will set you out and go back to my father and say to him; Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired men” Lk 15:18-19.
Saturday 28: God answers the prayer of faith.
“Go! It will be done just as you believed it would” Mt 8:13.
Reading 1: Rom 4:13-22; Reading 2: Mt 8:1-13; Preaching 1 (free choice); Preaching 2: Mt 8:13. Other references:
– “And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; … he will be forgiven” Jas 5:15.
– “If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer” Mt 21:22