Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost — September 13, 2020


Today’s Theme for Worship: Discipleship means learning and following. Jesus didn’t come to set up a glorious earthly kingdom, but to give himself for the kingdom of God. Following Christ, we “take up our cross, and follow him.


Opening Hymn: 549  Around the Throne, a Glorious Band

1  Around the throne, a glorious band,

The saints in countless numbers stand,

Of ev’ry tongue, redeemed to God,

Arrayed in garments washed in blood.


2  Through tribulation great they came;

They bore the cross, despised the shame.

From all their labors now they rest

In God’s eternal glory blest.


3  They see their Savior face to face

And sing the triumphs of his grace.

Each day and night they sing his praise,

To him the loud thanksgiving raise:


4  Worthy the Lamb, for sinners slain,

Through endless years to live and reign;

You have redeemed us by your blood

And made us kings and priests to God.”


5  Oh, may we tread the sacred road

That saints and holy martyrs trod,

Wage to the end the glorious strife,

And win, like them, a crown of life.


Text: Rowland Hill, 1744-1833, abr., alt.



P: The grace of our Lord + Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you.

C: And also with you.


Confession of Sins

P: We have come into the presence of God, who created us to love and serve him as his dear children. But we have disobeyed him and deserve only his wrath and punishment. Therefore, let us confess our sins to him and plead for his mercy.

C: Merciful Father in heaven, I am altogether sinful from birth. In countless ways I have sinned against you and do not deserve to be called your child. But trusting in Jesus, my Savior, I pray: have mercy on me according to your unfailing love. Cleanse me from my sin, and take away my guilt.

P: God, our heavenly Father, has forgiven all your sins. By the perfect life and innocent death of our Lord Jesus Christ, he has removed your guilt forever. You are his own dear child. May God give you strength to live according to his will.

C: Amen.


P: In the peace of forgiveness, let us praise the Lord.


Oh Taste And See


Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good.

Bless-ed are they who take re-fuge in him.


Your Word, O Lord, is e-ter-nal;

it stands firm in the heav-ens.

Your faith-ful-ness con-tin-ues for-ev-er.


Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good.

Bless-ed are they who take re-fuge in him.



Prayer of the Day

P: Let us Pray.

O Lord Jesus Christ, preserve the congregation of believers with your never-failing mercy. Help us to avoid whatever is wicked and harmful, and guide us in the way that leads to our salvation; for you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  


First Lesson: Jeremiah 15:15-21

In his distress, Jeremiah questioned God. The LORD strengthened him so he could stand up to the troubles of his ministry.

15O Lord, you understand.

Remember me and care for me.

Take vengeance for me on those who persecute me.

You are slow to anger.

Do not take me away.

Keep in mind that for your sake I bear disgrace.

16Your words came to me, and I devoured them.

Your words became my joy,

the delight of my heart,

because I bear your name,

O Lord God of Armies.

17I did not sit with the band of partygoers,

nor did I celebrate with them.

I sat alone, because your hand was upon me.

You filled me with indignation.

18Why is my pain unending?

Why is my wound incurable, refusing to heal?

Will you be as deceptive as an intermittent stream to me,

like a source of water that a person can’t depend on?

19Therefore this is what the Lord says.

If you repent, I will take you back,

so that you may stand before me.

If what you say is worthwhile and not worthless,

you will be my spokesman.

They must turn to you,

but you must not turn to them.

20I will make you like a bronze wall to this people.

They will fight against you,

but they will not overcome you,

because I am with you to save you

and to rescue you, declares the Lord.

21I will rescue you from the hand of the wicked,

and I will deliver you from the grasp of the ruthless.


Psalm of the Day: Psalm 121 – Special Music – Special Music will sing the verses and the congregation will join in the refrain.

“I lift up my eyes to the hills.” 



I lift up my eyes to the mountains

Where does my help come from

My help comes from the Lord,

the Maker of heaven and earth


(Special Music)

He will not let your foot slip-

He who watches over you

will not slumber;

Indeed, he who watches over Israel

Will neither slumber nor sleep.



I lift up my eyes to the mountains

Where does my help come from

My help comes from the Lord,

the Maker of heaven and earth


(Special Music)

The Lord watches over you-

The Lord is your shade

at your right hand;

The sun will not harm you by day,

Nor the moon by night.



I lift up my eyes to the mountains

Where does my help come from

My help comes from the Lord,

the Maker of heaven and earth


(Special Music)

The Lord will keep you from all harm-

He will watch over your life;

The Lord will watch o'er

your coming and going

Both now and forevermore.



I lift up my eyes to the mountains

Where does my help come from

My help comes from the Lord,

the Maker of heaven and earth


Second Lesson: Romans 12:1-8

In this sinful world, differences are often the cause of troubles. It is not to be that way in the Church. Our differences complement each other as we make up “one body in Christ.”

Therefore I urge you, brothers, by the mercies of God, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice—holy and pleasing to God—which is your appropriate worship. 2Also, do not continue to conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, so that you test and approve what is the will of God—what is good, pleasing, and perfect.

3So by the grace given to me, I tell everyone among you not to think of yourself more highly than you ought, but think in a way that results in sound judgment, as God distributed a measure of faith to each of you. 4For we have many members in one body, and not all the members have the same function. 5In the same way, though we are many, we are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another.

6We have different gifts, according to the grace God has given us. If the gift is prophecy, do it in complete agreement with the faith. 7If it is serving, then serve. If it is teaching, then teach. 8If it is encouraging, then encourage. If it is contributing, be generous. If it is leadership, be diligent. If it is showing mercy, do it cheerfully.


Alleluia!  Alleluia!  Alleluia!

These words are written that we may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God.

Alleluia!  Alleluia!  Alleluia!


Gospel: Matthew 16-21-26

Peter didn’t want to hear Jesus predict his future suffering and death, so he began to scold Jesus for being so “negative.” Jesus in turn, scolded Peter, and then reminded his followers that true discipleship often means sacrifice.

21From that time, Jesus began to show his disciples that he had to go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders, chief priests, and experts in the law, and be killed, and on the third day be raised again.

22Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him, saying, “May you receive mercy, Lord! This will never happen to you.”

23But Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a snare to me because you are not thinking the things of God, but the things of men.”

24Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If anyone wants to follow me, let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me. 25In fact whoever wants to save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. 26After all, what will it benefit a person if he gains the whole world, but forfeits his soul? Or what can a person give in exchange for his soul?”
Praise be to you, O Christ!


Hymn of the Day: 465  Jesus, I My Cross Have Taken

1  Jesus, I my cross have taken, All to leave and follow you.

Destitute, despised, forsaken, You on earth once suffered, too.

Perish ev’ry fond ambition, All I’ve ever hoped or known;

Yet how rich is my condition! God and heav’n are still my own.


2  Let the world despise and leave me; They have left my Savior, too.

Human hearts and looks deceive me; You are not, like them, untrue.

And since you have smiled upon me, God of wisdom, love, and might,

Foes may hate and friends may shun me-Show your face, and all is bright.


3  Go, then, earthly fame and treasure! Come, disaster, scorn, and pain!

In your service pain is pleasure; With your favor loss is gain.

I have called you Abba, Father! You my all in all shall be.

Storms may howl, and clouds may gather; All must work for good to me.


4  Haste, my soul, from grace to glory, Armed by faith and winged by prayer.

All but heav’n is transitory; God’s own hand shall guide you there.

Soon shall end this earthly story; Swift shall pass the pilgrim days,

Hope soon change to heav’nly glory, Faith to sight and prayer to praise.


Text: Henry F. Lyte, 1793-1847, abr., alt.




Apostles’ Creed

I believe in God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended into hell. The third day he rose again from the dead. He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty. From there he will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Christian Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.


Offering Prayer


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Prayer of the Church


Lord’s Prayer

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name, thy Kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread;

and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen.


Hymn: 735 Speak O Lord


1 Speak, O Lord, as we come to you

To receive the food of your Holy Word.

Take your truth, plant it deep in us;

Shape and fashion us in your likeness

That the light of Christ might be seen today

In our acts of love and our deeds of faith.

Speak, O Lord, and fulfill in us

All your purposes for your glory.


2 Teach us, Lord, full obedience,

Holy reverence, true humility.

Test our thoughts and our attitudes

In the radiance of your purity.

Cause our faith to rise, cause our eyes to see

Your majestic love and authority.

Words of pow'r that can never fail,

Let their truth prevail over unbelief.


3 Speak, O Lord, and renew our minds;

Help us grasp the heights of your plans for us.

Truths unchanged from the dawn of time,

That will echo down through eternity.

And by grace we'll stand on your promises,

And by faith we'll walk as you walk with us.

Speak, O Lord, as your Church is built

And you fill the earth with your glory.

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Prayer and Blessing


P: O Lord God, our heavenly Father, pour out the Holy Spirit on your faithful people. Keep us strong in your grace and truth, protect and comfort us in all temptation, and bestow on us your saving peace, through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.



P: Almighty God, we thank you for teaching us the things you want us to believe and do. Help us by your Holy Spirit to keep your Word in pure hearts that we may be strengthened in faith, guided in holiness, and comforted in life and in death, through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.


C:  A-men.


P: Brothers and sisters, go in peace. Live in harmony with one another. Serve the Lord with gladness.

The Lord bless you and keep you.

The Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you.

The Lord look on you with favor and + give you peace.

C:  A-men, A-men, A-men



Closing Hymn: 566 We All Are One in Mission


1  I know my faith is founded On Jesus Christ, my God and Lord;

And this my faith confessing, Unmoved I stand upon his Word.

Man’s reason cannot fathom The truth of God profound;

Who trusts in worldly wisdom Relies on shifting ground.

God’s Word is all-sufficient, It makes divinely sure,

And, trusting in its wisdom, My faith shall rest secure.


2  Increase my faith, dear Savior, For Satan seeks by night and day

To rob me of this treasure And take my hope of bliss away.

But, Lord, with you beside me I shall be undismayed;

And led by your good Spirit, I shall be unafraid.

Abide with me, O Savior, A firmer faith bestow.

Then I shall bid defiance To ev’ry evil foe.


3  In faith, Lord, let me serve you; Though persecution, grief, and pain

Should seek to overwhelm me, Let me a steadfast trust retain.

And then at my departure, Lord, take me home to you,

And let me there inherit All you have promised me.

In life and death, Lord, keep me Until your heav’n I gain,

Where I by your great mercy The end of faith attain.


Text: Erdmann Neumeister, 1671-1756; tr. composite.