Today's sermon is about how faith gives birth to love. Each of us can only believe for ourselves but motivated by love we can help people by bringing them to Jesus who gives faith.
Lutheran Service Book - hymnal
Divine Service Setting Three - page 184
THE CONFESSION AND ABSOLUTION
The Confession of Sins p. 184
THE SERVICE OF THE WORD
The Psalm 146
The Kyrie p. 186
The Gloria in Excelsis p. 187
The Salutation and Collect of the Day p. 189
The Old Testament p. 190
The Triple Alleluia
Glory Be To Thee, O Lord!
Praise Be To Thee, O Christ! p. 191
The Nicene Creed
The Hymn of the Day p. 192
The Offering p. 193
The Prayer of the Church
THE SERVICE OF THE SACRAMENT
The Preface p. 194
The Sanctus p. 195
The Lord’s Prayer p.196
The Word’s of Our Lord p. 197
The Pax Domini
The Agnus Dei p. 198
The Distribution of Christ’s Body and Blood
The Nunc Dimittis
The Thanksgiving p. 200
The Salutation and Benedicamus p.201
The Benediction p.202
September 3 & 4, 2017
Twelfth Sunday after Holy Trinity
Text: Isaiah 29; Romans 10; Mark 7:31 Jesus Heals a Deaf Man; Hymn 545 Word of God, Come Down on Earth
Grace and mercy to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
It is written for us this morning in Mark chapter 7 that “those who begged Jesus to lay hands on the deaf man who had a speech impediment said, ‘Jesus has done all things well. Jesus even makes the deaf hear and the mute speak.’” Thus far the text.
Let us pray: Gracious Father, open our ears by granting us Your Holy Spirit that we may believe in Jesus and speak plainly to our neighbors about Him; through the same Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
Jesus brings us together. Jesus gives us Himself week after week. Together we share in this abiding joy that Jesus is doing all things well, even among us.
This mornings Bible story is plain and clear and precious. It speaks of Jesus. And, since we have only one story to tell, let us look at this short text as a summary of the whole.
Then he returned from the region of Tyre and went through Sidon to the Sea of Galilee, in the region of the Decapolis.
32And they brought to him a man who was deaf and had a speech impediment, and they begged him to lay his hand on him.
A crowd brings a poor man to Jesus. The man is both deaf and has a speech impediment. The crowd brings the poor man to Jesus as if his deafness and speech impediment were their own.
In this one story, Jesus shows us both faith and love. Faith toward God. Love toward neighbor.
We hear that Jesus is kind and compassionate and helps those who come to Him. We hear the Word of God that shows us the mercy of God. This Word sinks into our hearts so that we depend on this mercy.
First comes the Word of God which creates this faith and trust in Jesus. It is the Good News of our Savior Jesus which is properly called the Gospel. Good News that is proclaimed for all to hear and believe.
The folks that brought the deaf man to Jesus heard that Jesus is kind and friendly and willing to help anyone in need. This is the beginning of their faith. They begin to trust Jesus to be who He says He is.
Second comes the faith in Christ which grows out of the Word. The Word first sets before us the mercy and goodness of God. Only then does Christ’s faith appear and grow and give us the desire to say Amen to more and more that is written. Faith in Jesus says yes to the Holy Writings in thought, word and deed.
Third, this Gospel describes what follows the Word of God and faith in Christ. What follows is works of love like this, the people go and care for the deaf man. They do this without the deaf man doing anything for others first. The faithful crowd is now doing what faithful Jesus had done to them by giving His healing Word without any merit or worthiness in us. This is Christian love.
Let me focus on this love born from faith for a moment. For those of you who have ever asked, ‘How can my faith in Jesus help other people?’ the answer is love. Christian love is not a sentimental emotion but an action. What is it that the people around you need? Christian love fills that need
Hurricane Harvey, give or pray….
33And taking him aside from the crowd privately, he put his fingers into his ears, and after spitting touched his tongue. 34And looking up to heaven, he sighed and said to him, “Ephphatha,” that is, “Be opened.” 35And his ears were opened, his tongue was released, and he spoke plainly. 36And Jesus charged them to tell no one. But the more he charged them, the more zealously they proclaimed it. 37And they were astonished beyond measure, saying, “He has done all things well. He even makes the deaf hear and the mute speak.”
John the Baptist recently beheaded. Also about 1 year before Christ’s crucifixion.
First faith, then love.
Father loved us. Jesus faithfully goes when the Father sends Him. Jesus loves us while we were yet sinners.
The crowd had opportunity to hear Jesus and believed Him.
The deaf man with a speech impediment did not hear Jesus.
The crowd loved the deaf man by bringing him to Jesus.
Jesus uses, basically, sign language. Tongue, ears, looks to heaven. Even Hollywood has people look up to the skies when a character is talking to God. Jesus shows that man that He is giving God’s healing of tongue and ears.
Stroke victims may hear but have no way to speak.
I knew a lady who had a stroke and could hear and speak but could not longer read.
I knew another lady who had a stroke and could not speak or swallow but could understand.
There are those born deaf and because of deafness never learned how to speak.
I heard an account of a baby born deaf but there was a special type of hearing aid that could help. The child did not want anything put into its ears. But when the child heard its mother’s voice for the first time. Joy!
Jesus is doing a miracle. Physical healing but also speaking faith into people that grows into love for others.
The crowd is acting upon faith in what they heard from Jesus and not their reason. In churches, even ours, a common place to see reason lifted above faith are in church meetings. Synod and district conventions. Voter Assemblies and Church Councils. One person urges faith and prayer. The crowd urges reason and finances. The reasonable crowd wins the debate.
We do this too.
Jesus keeps doing miracle among us. Jesus baptizes our babies and then our children hear their heavenly Father. Babies learn to talk to mom and dad because mom and dad first talk to each other and to their babies. Babies learn to talk to their heavenly Father because mom and dad talk to the same heavenly Father and therefore teach their babies by their behavior and their words.
You have been given faith therefore you act in love toward your children according to God’s Word. You can’t give anyone faith. You can only believe for yourself. But faith acts in love and you bring others to Jesus.
I know one person who said that it is good to dedicate babies to God because God’s Word is a blessing. I couldn’t help but add that they baptized their babies just without the water like God commanded. My addition wasn’t met with a smile but it was a gentle nudge toward the Word which my friend cherishes.
Faith and love work together. But let us continue to remain in the Word of God from which first comes faith and then comes love.
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.