With Perseverance — This Week at ELC

Heb 12

We are not called by God independently and without aid. We are surrounded by a great number of people who have followed God before us, who have shown us the way. Even now, when we are called, God puts in our path the people we need in order to succeed in our calling.  It will not always be easy, but by God’s strength we may persevere.

Worship This Week with Holy Communion:

Saturday – 5:00 p.m. in the chapel

Sunday – 10:00 a.m. Combined worship

Devotions for this Week:

The Meaning of Faith   Hebrews 11:1-16; 12:1-2     Sept. 5-6, 2015

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. Hebrews 11:1

Many people have gone before us, showing us how to live by faith. Although the challenge is that faith must be in something we cannot see or cannot see just yet, we are not alone. We can rely on each other as we learn how to live by faith.

Read:

Sunday, Hebrews 11:1-16 (12:1-2), The Meaning of Faith

Monday, Hebrews 12:18-24, Warning against Rejecting God’s Grace

Tuesday, Hebrews 12:25-29, Warning against Rejecting God’s Grace

Wednesday, Hebrews 13:1-6, Service Well-Pleasing to God

Thursday, Hebrews 13:7-19, Service Well-Pleasing to God

Friday, Hebrews 13:20-21, Benediction

Saturday, Hebrews 13:22-25, Final Greetings

  • According to Hebrews, what is the meaning of faith?
  • Where does faith rank in the list of values held by you and/or your community? What values are held higher? What difference do you think this makes in the way you or your community behave?
  • Why is faith important? What would your life look like without faith?

Do: By acting on what we learn, we make God’s word come alive. Do the following activity this week.

Make a list of your top 10 values. Rank them according to importance. Reflect on how your life expresses your values.

Bless: May God strengthen your faith and give you peace. Amen

“The one who promises is faithful” — This week at ELC

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As we remember all that Jesus has done to bring us close, we are asked to think about how we respond in faith and life.

Worship this week:

Saturday – 5:00 p.m.  in the chapel

Sunday – 8:30 a.m. Traditional Worship

7:00 p.m. – Contemporary Worship on the church lawn!  (NOTE SPECIAL TIME AND PLACE!)

Earthly and Heavenly Sanctuaries       Hebrews 9:1-14   August 29-30, 2015

How much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, purify our conscience from dead works to worship the living God! Hebrews 9:14

In days of old, tents served as places of worship. There worshipers offered up animals’ blood as sacrifices for the purification of flesh. In God’s heavenly sanctuary, Jesus’ blood has been offered once for all, for the purification of the spirit.  Now in response we are encouraged to hold fast, meet together, love and serve!

Read: Read the following daily readings to deepen your understanding of Sunday’s text. After the reading, ask the follow-up questions.

Sunday, Hebrews 9:1-14, 10: 23-25   Earthly and Heavenly Sanctuaries

Monday, Hebrews 11:17-22, The Faith of Abraham

Tuesday, Hebrews 11:23-28, The Faith of Moses

Wednesday, Hebrews 11:29-40, The Faith of Others

Thursday, Hebrews 12:1-6, The Example of Jesus

Friday, Hebrews 12:7-13, The Example of Jesus

Saturday, Hebrews 12:14-17, Warnings against Rejecting God’s Grace

  • How did the people mentioned in these readings express their faith?
  • What do you think God’s heavenly sanctuary will be like? What do you want it to be like?
  • Where do you find sanctuary?

Do: By acting on what we learn, we make God’s word come alive. Do the following activity this week.

Take time to spend in your sanctuary this week. Spend the time in your sanctuary getting to know yourself or speaking with God.

Bless: Close your devotion with a blessing.

May God bless you in the earthly and heavenly sanctuaries. Amen.

“Grace to help in time of need” — This Week at ELC

hebrews 4 16No matter what we’ve done, endured or face around us and ahead of us, we are assured that Jesus stands ready to listen, intercede and forgive.  There is nothing we can face that he has not already faced for us and with us.  This gives us the amazing privilege to approach our days with confidence and faith in all situations.

Worship this week:

Saturday – 5:00 p.m.  in the chapel

Sunday – 8:30 a.m. Traditional Worship

10:00 a.m. Contemporary Worship

Devotions for this week:

Jesus the Great High Priest     Hebrews 4:14 – 5:10        August 22-23, 2015

For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who in every respect has been tested as we are, yet without sin. Hebrews 4:15

Jesus, the Great High Priest, was called by God to perform the duties of a high priest for all the world. These duties included blessing the people. Jesus is accessible and understands the human plight because he became human and lived through the temptations and trials of humanity.

Read – Sunday, Hebrews 4:14 – 5:10, Jesus the Great High Priest

Monday, Hebrews 9:15-22, Mediator of a New Covenant

Tuesday, Hebrews 9:23-28, Christ’s Sacrifice

Wednesday, Hebrews 10:1-18, Christ’s Sacrifice

Thursday, Hebrews 10:19-25, Call to Perseverance

Friday, Hebrews 10:26-31, Call to Perseverance

Saturday, Hebrews 10:32-39, Call to Perseverance

  • What does it mean that Jesus is the Great High Priest? What other images can you think of for Jesus that speak to you?
  • Where do you see Christianity persevere in your community? How does your expression of Christianity look the same as it did at the time of Jesus? How does it look different?
  • Do you think there is a limit to how much suffering people can endure? What is your limit?

Do: Consider how you have struggled to persevere as a Christian in your community. Have you struggled to share your faith with others? To live by the values your faith professes? To make sense of the differing faiths of others you are close to? Be intentional this week to work at perseverance in the area you struggle with the most.

Bless: May Jesus, the Great High Priest, bless you each and every day. Amen.

Since he himself was tested — This week at ELC

Hebrews 2 18

Each and every human life will at some point encounter hardship, testing, and suffering.  The scripture this week assures us that Jesus became one of us so that he knows what we feel, and can bring redemption and hope.

Worship with Holy Communion this week (with all services in the air-conditioned fellowship hall):

Saturday – 5:00 p.m.  (modified traditional worship)

Sunday – 8:30 a.m. Traditional Worship

10:00 a.m. Contemporary worship

Devotions for this week:

Praise for those being tested           Hebrews 2:10-18   August 16-17, 2015

Therefore he had to become like his brothers and sisters in every respect, so that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in the service of God, to make a sacrifice of atonement for the sins of the people.
Hebrews 2:17

Jesus became flesh and blood to atone for humanity’s sin. By doing so, Jesus freed all people from sin and death. Ultimately, sin and death do not prevail, and we are freed from suffering.

Read – Sunday, Hebrews 2:10-18, Praise for Those Being Tested

Monday, Hebrews 5:11-14, Warning against Falling Away

Tuesday, Hebrews 6:1-12, Peril of Falling Away

Wednesday, Hebrews 6:13-20, God’s Certain Promise

Thursday, Hebrews 7:1-10, The Priestly Order of Mechizedek

Friday, Hebrews 7:11-28, A Priest Like Melchizedek

Saturday, Hebrews 8:1-13, Mediator of a Better Covenant

  • How did Jesus’ testing make him better able to relate to humanity?
  • Why do you think there is suffering in the world?
  • Do you believe God tests people? How do you view suffering in your own life? How does suffering shape your life?

Do: By acting on what we learn, we make God’s word come alive. Do the following activity this week.

Check your local news, social media, or your congregation to find people who may be experiencing suffering due to illness, grief, loss, or some other reason. Determine their need, whether emotional support, financial support, a meal, or something else. Provide for that need.

Bless: May God deliver you from suffering today and every day. Amen.