Sermon for the Day of Pentecost May 23, 2021
Text: John 14:25-27 3 Year Series B 21:2262
Theme: Jesus Promises to Send Help and Guidance.
Imagine what it would be like to have Jesus as your pastor. No faults or weaknesses in Him! What would it have been like to hear Him? Perfect sermons all the time. What would it have been like to touch Him? Perfect calm in every situation. What would it have been like to see Him? Perfect assurance of loving care in His eyes. Wow! Wouldn’t that be something!
Realize that’s exactly what the 12 disciples had. Jesus told them, “Blessed are the eyes that see what you see! Indeed I tell you, many prophets and kings wanted to see the things you are seeing and to hear the things that you are hearing, yet did not” (Lk.10:23f).
Just like you might long to see and hear Jesus and wonder what it would be like to have Him teach you, so did many believers of old. There were the patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; men like Noah and Moses; prophets like Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Elijah; kings like David, Solomon, and Hezekiah. They longed to see and hear Him, too. They didn’t get the chance – not directly. But the 12 did. How great it must have been having Jesus as their pastor!
Then one day Jesus told them that He was leaving, going away. Astonishment and sorrow overwhelmed them. What would happen then? How would they get the guidance they desperately needed? But Jesus assured that his leaving was for their benefit (Jn.16:7).
Yet, He was not going to orphan them in a world of evil, injustice, sorrow, and pain. No! Jesus would leave; that was certain. But He promised to continue helping them by sending someone else to take His place. He said: “I have told you these things while staying with you. But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and remind you of everything I told you.”
The Spirit would come and take Jesus’ place as the disciples’ Guide. He would be what Jesus had been, and more. It holds true today. Jesus sends help and guidance through the Holy Spirit.
I. He teaches and reminds us of everything Jesus said and did. We need someone who can teach and remind us of everything that Jesus said and did because we are such limited people. On the one hand, there are things about God that we couldn’t know on our
own. On the other hand, we often forget the things we have learned.
I don’t know about you, but I surely have a problem with that. I’m so forgetful. I forget birthdays; names of people; I forget where I put my glasses; I forget what I walked into a room to get; I forget all kinds of things. As a child Dad used to tell me that I would even forget my head if it weren’t attached to my neck. I just forget things. Ask my family once; they’ll tell you it’s true.
Do you know what that’s like – to forget so many things? I know people get irritated with me about it. Maybe they think that I do it on purpose. I don’t, but I have to admit that I am not always paying close enough attention. At other times I’ve really tried to remember things, and I just don’t. It may be irritating to others, but it’s frustrating to me. It shows my limitations and can cause me such trouble.
Granted, not all people have such bad memories as I do, but it’s true that people are forgetful. Look how quickly people get the facts and details of events all mixed up, quite often because they don’t pay close enough attention.
In a similar way if the apostles were left to themselves, they also would have misrepresented many of the things that Jesus said and did. If they were left on their own, they would have gotten the facts and details of Jesus’ life and death mixed up. Their writings would have been filled with all sorts of contradictions, and we could not find any assurance, comfort, and certain hope in them.
But God wasn’t going to let that happen. Jesus wasn’t going to let them wander off on their own and mislead us in the process. He promised them, “The Holy Spirit will teach you all things and remind you of everything I told you.”
Thank goodness for that. It’s true that it was first for their benefit, since they were about to see things that they did not yet understand. This was the Savior looking out for them. But not only for them – He was looking out for we Christians today also. Jesus gave the 12 the Holy Spirit in a special way on Pentecost. That Spirit caused these men to remember exactly what Jesus had spoken and exactly what Jesus had done. Before this, they didn’t get it and often got things mixed up. But the words they spoke and wrote here (Bible) were given under complete inspiration and guidance of the Holy Spirit whom Jesus promised and sent them. That Holy Spirit reminded them and breathed into them word for word what Jesus said and did.
It was the job Jesus gave His divine Colleague to do. We might call it the Holy Spirit’s #1 job because if the 12 didn’t have the truth of God’s Word, we could not have faith and could not be saved, for “faith comes from hearing the message, and the message comes through the word of Christ” (Ro.10:17). We needed the true words of and about Christ. Since Jesus promised and gave His disciples the Spirit to teach and remind them of everything He said and did, we are sure that the Bible is an accurate record of the Savior’s saving words and works. It’s all true. You can believe it.
See, Jesus was not only looking out for them, He was looking out for us, too, so that we could be taught and reminded of everything Jesus said and did to save us. Thank the Holy Spirit for that! Thank Him for the accurate record of the Savior that we’ve got. It is the truth.
II. He comforts and gives us peace.
So it is that when the Bible reveals our sinfulness and need for a Savior, Jesus is speaking to us. When the Bible tells us that “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son,” Jesus is offering us His comfort. And when the Bible promises, “Son, daughter, your sins are forgiven. Go in peace,” Jesus is giving us the peace that He won for us within our souls. It’s all ours because Jesus promised to send us help and guidance by the Holy Spirit who would give us the comfort and peace Jesus won for us.
Just think of the hours of agony, sorrow, and fretting that the disciples could have avoided if they had not jumped to hasty conclusions about His leaving and instead had listened to Jesus’ promise of sending them the Holy Spirit. He is the One sent to comfort and give us peace.
Peace! Millions of hearts yearn for it. Peace in the Middle East, peace in our torn society in America, peace in families in turmoil. Millions of hearts yearn for it. And people think that they are going to get it by passing more laws and restrictions. That approach has never brought on-going peace in the past. Why would it be any different now? That’s the world’s solution for peace. Pass more laws. It may work for a while, but the peace which worldly people give affects only a few and then it is soon withdrawn again. War after war after war only proves that the world gives peace for a time and then takes it back again. It’s way doesn’t work.
But Jesus does not give peace as the world gives peace. Peace is only present when the cause of turmoil is met. That cause is sin. When sin is removed and its power broken in life, then we can have peace – peace between God and man, peace between man and man.
Only one thing brings it. That is release from sin and its horrifying results.
Only Christ can remove it and did at the cross. And then He sent us His Holy Spirit to believe it and comfort us with its truth. Where the peace which Christ won for us with God and which the Holy Spirit is sent to work in our hearts reigns, all the troubles and disquiet of this world cannot disturb it in us.
What’s that peace like? Maybe the closest comparison that we can find to describe such peace is in the unbroken tranquility that lies in the deepest caverns of the sea, far, far below the surface, down where the seashells lie, undisturbed by the billowing waves on the surface. The disturbances above never touch that which lies below. There all is perfectly calm. Nothing disturbs the tranquility.
That’s what you have in Christ, your Savior – peace with God through the surety of sins forgiven. And the Holy Spirit is the one sent to comfort and guide you into it. Though your outward life may be agitated by many a storm, the life that is yours in Christ deep within your heart is blessed with peace, knowing where you stand before God in the Savior. That peace passes all human understanding for it is divine. It is given by the Holy Spirit to you. God grant it to us all in faith; for Jesus’ sake. Amen.
Zion Lutheran Church of Springfield
(A member congregation of the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod)
4717 S Farm Rd 135 (Golden Avenue)
Church phone: 417.887.0886 Pastor’s cell phone: 417.693.3244
The Day of Pentecost May 23, 2021
“I will put my Spirit in you and you will live.” Ezekiel 37:14
F o r O u r V i s i t o r s
The family of Zion welcomes you as we worship the Lord today. We encourage children to worship with us. However, if you need to leave with your child, there is a nursery room to the right as you exit the sanctuary. The rest rooms are located in the hallway between the sanctuary and the fellowship hall. Visitors, please sign our guest book to the right, just outside the sanctuary. We’re glad that you are here and pray that through our worship the Lord grants you peace.
U p o n E n t e r i n g G o d’ s H o u s e
“LORD, give ear to my cry for mercy. My spirit grows faint inside me. I remember the days of long ago and consider what Your hands have done. Teach me the way that I should go. May Your good Spirit lead me on level ground” (Psalm 143).
W h a t T h i s S u n d a y i s A b o u t
Life through the Spirit. When the Holy Spirit came to the disciples on Pentecost, it was in fulfillment of Jesus’ promise to send another Counselor to guide them. He would remind the disciples of all that Jesus had already told them. With Him the disciples would be comforted in faith and strengthened in spirit.
Today the Holy Spirit works in the same way. He comes to comfort, counsel, guide, and help. He is the Friend Jesus promised. Without Him we would be dead to God. He makes us alive in faith, enabling us to enjoy the divine peace the Savior won for us.
To that end we pray: Holy Spirit, God and Lord, come to us this joyful day with Your sevenfold gift of grace. Rekindle in our hearts the holy fire of Your love that in a true and living faith we may tell abroad the glory of our Savior. In His name we pray. Amen
– T h e W o r d o f G o d f o r T o d a y –
The Old Testament Lesson: Ezekiel 37:1-14
Can dead and dried out bones live? No, unless the Lord’s creative power goes to work and makes them alive. God gave Ezekiel an object lesson of this truth in the Valley of the Dry Bones. When God’s Spirit enters, that which is dead can be made to live again.
The Epistle Lesson: Acts 2:1-21
Ten days after Jesus ascended into heaven, the Holy Spirit came upon the disciples in a special outpouring of grace. Filling them with His gifts, the Spirit enabled them to boldly go out to the people in Jerusalem, who had gathered for the Pentecost Festival, and proclaim the risen Christ.
The Gospel Lesson: John 14:25-27
On Maundy Thursday evening Jesus told His disciples that He was returning to the Father. He promised to send the Holy Spirit to comfort, guide, and teach them. With the Spirit by their side, there was no reason to fear for He would remind them of Jesus’ words and give them peace.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
The Organist: Jane Rips The Preacher: Pastor Edwin Lehmann
Points to Ponder: 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.
What Does This Mean?
I believe that I cannot by my own thinking or choosing believe in Jesus Christ, my Lord, or come to Him.
But the Holy Spirit has called me by the gospel, enlightened me with His gifts, sanctified and kept me in the true faith. In the same way He calls, gathers, enlightens, and sanctifies the whole Christian Church on earth and keeps it with Jesus Christ in the one true faith.
In this Christian Church He daily and fully forgives all sins to me and all believers.
On the Last Day He will raise me and all the dead and give eternal life to me and all believers in Christ. This is most certainly true.
— The Third Article and Explanation of the Apostles’ Creed
Outline of Our Worship
Lord, Hear Us
Opening Thoughts on the Service
Opening Hymn: #183
Today’s Order of Worship: Morning Praise: Hymnal pg.45
Lord, Feed Us
Psalm of the Day: #143 Hymnal pg.118
Duet: Come, Lord Fount of Ev’ry Blessing
Sermon Hymn: #182
Sermon Text: John 14:25-27 Jesus Promises to Send Help and Guidance
Lord, Accept Our Response
“We Praise You, O God”
Te Deum Laudamus: Hymnal pg.48
“Lord, Have Mercy”
Prayers, Lord’s Prayer & Prayer for Grace Hymnal pg. 50
Lord, Bless Us
The Benediction Hymnal pg. 51
Closing Hymn: #186
The Day of Pentecost – Series B
The Old Testament Lesson: Ezekiel 37:1-14 – The Valley of Dry Bones
1 The hand of the Lord was upon me. He brought me out by the Spirit of the Lord and set me down in the middle of a valley, which was full of bones. 2He had me pass through them and go all over among them. There were very many on the valley floor, and they were very dry. 3He said to me, “Son of man, can these dry bones live?” I answered, “Lord God, you know.” 4Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones and say to them, ‘Dry bones, hear the word of the Lord.’” 5This is what the Lord God says to these bones. I am about to make breath enter you so that you will live. 6I will attach tendons to you. I will put flesh back on you. I will cover you with skin and put breath in you, and you will live. Then you will know that I am the Lord. 7So I prophesied as I had been commanded, and as I was prophesying there was a noise, a rattling, as the bones came together, one bone connecting to another. 8As I watched, tendons were attached to them, then flesh grew over them, and skin covered them. But there was no breath in them. 9Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the wind. Prophesy, son of man, and say to the wind that this is what the Lord God says. From the four winds, come, O wind, and breathe into these slain so that they may live.” 10So I prophesied as he commanded me. Breath entered them, and they came back to life. They stood on their feet, a very, very large army. 11Then he said to me, “Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They are saying, ‘Our bones are dried up. Our hope is lost. We have been completely cut off.’ 12Therefore, prophesy and say to them that this is what the Lord God says. My people, I am going to open your graves and raise you up from your graves and bring you back to the soil of Israel. 13Then you will know that I am the Lord, when I open your graves and raise you up from your graves, O my people. 14I will put my Spirit in you, and you will live. I will settle you on your own land, and you will know that I, the Lord, have spoken, and I have done it, declares the Lord.”
Epistle Lesson: Acts 2:1-21 – The Holy Spirit Comes on Pentecost
1When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. 2Suddenly a sound like the rushing of a violent wind came from heaven, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3They saw divided tongues that were like fire resting on each one of them. 4They were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, since the Spirit was giving them the ability to speak fluently. 5Now there were godly Jewish men from every nation under heaven living in Jerusalem. 6When this sound was heard, a crowd came together and was confused, because each one heard them speaking in his own language. 7They were completely baffled and said to each other, “Look, are not all these men who are speaking Galileans? 8Then how is it that each of us hears them speaking in his own native language? 9Parthians, Medes, and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, and of Judea, Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt, and the parts of Libya around Cyrene; visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes; 11Cretans and Arabs—we hear them declaring in our own languages the wonderful works of God.” 12They were all amazed and perplexed. They kept saying to one another, “What does this mean?” 13But others mocked them and said, “They are full of new wine.” 14Then Peter stood up with the Eleven, raised his voice, and spoke loudly and clearly to them: “Men of Judea, and all you residents of Jerusalem, understand this, and listen closely to my words. 15These men are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only the third hour of the day. 16On the contrary, this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: 17This is what God says will happen in the last days: I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh. Your sons and your daughters will prophesy. Your young men will see visions. Your old men will dream dreams. 18Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy. 19I will show wonders in the sky above, and signs on the earth below, blood and fire and a rising cloud of smoke. 20The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord. 21And this will happen: Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
Gospel Lesson: John 15:25-27 – The Councilor Comes to Teach and Give Peace
25“I have told you these things while staying with you. 26But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and remind you of everything I told you. 27“Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, and do not let it be afraid.”
C a l e n d a r & A n n o u n c e m e n t s f o r Z i o n L u t h e r a n C h u r c h
Divine Worship Service
on line – Facebook
Fellowship & Brief Bible Study
Midweek Bible Class
Divine Worship Service
on line – Facebook
Fellowship & Brief Bible Study
Pentecost 1 – Holy Trinity
A Brief Bible Study on God’s Word for Today
There are many situations in life that seem impossible to deal with. People are drawn to despair and hopelessness. But our God is the God of the impossible. The day of Pentecost gave clear evidence of the power of the Holy Spirit to change things around. Just as dead bones became living, breathing beings in the Ezekiel reading, so people dead in sin become spiritually live through a message the Holy Spirit orchestrated and communicated through His people.
The Old Testament Lesson: Ezekiel 37:1-14 (answers are found on the back side)
- What was the condition of the bones and what in your life do they represent?
- What made these dead bones live? What does that mean for you?
Those We Remember In Our Prayers: Dea Windsor; Clyde Johnson; Dave Ballou; Greg Miller; Lou Schulz; Bill Buchanan; Norine Richardson; Barbara Long; Jodi Milam; William Moon; Patsy Mickelson; Lance Milam; Jodi Milam; Pastor Tim Buelow and Kathleen Huff in W. Virginia, both recovering from foot surgery; Pauline Jaeger, Randy’s mother, diagnosed with cancer, considering options for treatment; families recovering from Covid and other illnesses.
Book of Psalms The new WELS psalter, a forthcoming book edited by the WELS hymnal committee, is valuable not only for choirs or for Sunday worship. It’s also valuable for personal or family devotions. Two videos and Christian Worship: Psalter Preview feature six psalms from the new psalter. For more information visit christianworship.com/preview/psalms.
Copies of the Daily Devotions written by pastor this past week on Psalm 143 will be found in the narthex.
Soon No Face Mask Regulations Facemasks will no longer be required after this week, especially among those already vaccinated. If you feel more comfortable wearing a mask, you may do so. Masks, disposable gloves, and sanitizer are in the narthex and the fellowship hall for your use. Following this Sunday, we will return to passing the offering plate during the service, since it is a part of our custom of worship. If you have any questions or thoughts on all of this, please see Pastor.
June 6-8 – Family Campout for area WELS and ELS congregations at Heit’s Point
The Week in Review
Last Sunday’s Worship Attendance: 26; Bible Class: 11; Communed: 24; Offering: $1,179; Midweek Bible Class: 5.
Next Sunday’s Lessons:
Pentecost 1 The Holy Trinity: Isaiah 6:1-8; Romans 8:14-17; John 3:1-17 (Series B)
Pastor James Witt, retired, from St. Louis will be the guest preacher next Sunday.
Answers to Today’s Old Testament Lesson Brief Study:
- The bones were very dry. There was no life at all in them. The spirit among the people of God was one of hopelessness and despair. There seemed no chance to be released from captivity to return to their homeland. Sin leaves us dry too. (Eph 2:1-4) It makes us unable to do anything to return to God and the blessings He intended for us. It produces the feeling of being trapped and hopeless.
- The Holy Spirit does the impossible by bringing what was dead to life. He will restore the nation of Israel and bring it to its feet to return to their homeland. He also creates a new heart and renews a steadfast spirit within us (Ps 51). What seems impossible becomes reality in the promises of God, some that we experience fulfillment of now, others we look forward to.
This week I am praying for……