Malagasy Lutheran Church Song & Gospel Fourth Sunday after Epiphany January 30 – February 5, 2022 « God Takes Cares of His People » *

The message: God especially shows His love by taking care of His people, all those who accept Him as their Lord and Savior and do His work (Jn 14:12a). They are so precious to Him that He really protects them, as it is written: « Whoever touches you touches the apple of his eye » Zech 2:8b (NIV). God truly cares for His people, and He has made a covenant with them that He will never forsake or forget them. So, even though His people were deeply immersed in sin and was separated from Him as a result, He worked out redemption through His Son, Jesus Christ, and said to them: « Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine » Isa 43:1b. In fact, Jesus has showed to all people without exception His heart which deeply loves them and has compassion for them, and which is ready to look after them, as it is written: « When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd » Mt 9:36. And this is all the more true for those who have received Him and believe in Him, and whom He has received and « taken to be His own » (1 Pet 2:9), those who have common life and cause with Him. He lets them know that He loves them and does not forsake or forget His people, especially when they face difficult times and days of adversity like the ones we are going through in our days. For the world is changing and deteriorating, alas, it is “distressing times” (2 Tim 3:1), and many people are staggering, tottering like shipwrecked, discouraged, and helpless. But here is the great assurance that God gives to all who believe in Him and still cling to Him: « Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever » Heb 13:8; it is an assurance that endures forever, an assurance that never deceives, for it is the assurance of the Living God. This message is an exhortation for us to appreciate and praise God, and glorify Him for caring for us. Blessed are those whose sustainer is God, for He will surely fulfill to them His infallible promise which He gives to His people: « I will never leave you nor forsake you – Jos 1:5 » Heb 13:5b (NIV).

Monday, 31st: God takes care of His people.

« Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine » Isa 43:1b,d.

Reading 1: Mt 6:24-34. Reading 2: Isa 43:1-3. Preaching 1 (free choice). Preaching 2: Isa 43:1.

Introduction: God has made a covenant with His people that He will be their God, and there is no other: « But Zion said, ‘The Lord has forsaken me, my Lord has forgotten me.’ Can a woman forget her nursing child, or show no compassion for the child of her womb? Even these may forget, yet I will not forget you. See, I have inscribed you on the palms of my hands; your walls are continually before me » Isa 49:14-16.

Tuesday, 01st: The Lord Jesus Christ protects the lives of His people.

« Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a dead calm » Mt 8:26b.

Reading 1: Ps 23:1-6. Reading 2: Mt 8:23-27. Preaching 1 (free choice). Preaching 2: Mt 8:25-26.

Introduction: When Jesus rebuked the wind and the sea, it was as if they had ears and became calm, even though the sea was so rough that the boat with Jesus and His disciples was about to sink. For it is written: « Indeed the Lord will vindicate his people, have compassion on his servants, when he sees that their power is gone […] » Deut 32:36. So, when the king Saul sought to slay Jonathan, the people of Israel defended him, saying: « As the Lord lives, not one hair of his head shall fall to the ground; for he has worked with God today » 1 Sam 14:45b.

Wednesday, 02nd: God’s servants tend His sheep.

« Tend the flock of God that is in your charge […] » 1 Pet 5:2a.

Reading 1: Jn 21:15-17. Reading 2: 1 Pet 5:1-4. Preaching 1 (free choice). Preaching 2: 1 Pet 5:2.

Introduction: The Lord has appointed trustworthy shepherds to tend His sheep, to protect them and provide them with food in due season. They receive special favor from the Lord, as Jesus said: « Blessed are those slaves whom the master finds alert when he comes; truly I tell you, he will fasten his belt and have them sit down to eat, and he will come and serve them. If he comes during the middle of the night, or near dawn, and finds them so, blessed are those slaves » Lk 12:37-38.

Thursday, 03rd: God’s people take care of one another.

« Love your neighbor as yourself – Lev. 19:18 » Rom 13:9b.

Reading 1: Jn 13:33-35. Reading 2: Rom 13:8-10. Preaching 1 (free choice). Preaching 2: Rom 13:8-9.

Introduction: No one can claim to be self-sufficient, but God made all people need one another, so that they may learn to love and care for one another. In this regard, here is the command of God’s word: « Bear one another’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. […] So let us not grow weary in doing what is right, for we will reap at harvest time, if we do not give up. So then, whenever we have an opportunity, let us work for the good of all, and especially for those of the family of faith » Gal 6:2,9-10.

Friday, 04th: Jesus Christ is the Good Shepherd.

« I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep » Jn 10:11.

Reading 1: Ezek 34:1-10. Reading 2: Jn 10:11-17. Preaching 1 (free choice). Preaching 2: Jn 10:11.

Introduction: Jesus sets the perfect example of a « good shepherd »,a shepherd who is faithful, wise, skillful, and most loving, who denies Himself in order to tend and save His sheep, as Paul puts it: « But I do not count my life of any value to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the good news of God’s grace » Acts 20:24. Saving the sheep is paying the price for their lives, just as Jesus was willing to suffer death to save many (Heb 5:8-9).

Saturday, 05th: God’s care for His people has no limit.

« Even when you turn gray I will carry you » Isa 46:4b.

Reading 1: Mt 28:16-20. Reading 2: Isa 46:3-4. Preaching 1 (free choice). Preaching 2: Isa 46:4.

Introduction: God’s care for His people is infinite. It is the very reflection of His love, as He said to His people Israel: « I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you » Jer 31:3. And this « caring love » was so fulfilled and manifested in Jesus that the Apostle John declared, as it is written: « Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end » Jn 13:1b.

This pericope is published in Malagasy, French, English and German, and can be found on the Site and Facebook “HiFi-english”. Listen to 24/7: teachings, songs, …   © Madanet     


Laisser un commentaire

Votre adresse e-mail ne sera pas publiée. Les champs obligatoires sont indiqués avec *