Lord, Thy Will Be Done by Us… That We Realize the Importance of Life.

by Pastor Edwin Lehmann on July 14, 2023 in ,

Sermon for the Sixth Sunday after Trinity July 16, 2023

Text: Ex.20:13; Mt.5:21f        Summer Sermon Series                      23:2394
Theme: LORD, THY WILL BE DONE BY US…That We Realize the Importance of Life.

Oh, this is a hard commandment to keep, harder than we first realize. Often, I have asked young people in a Bible class, “Have you ever murdered anyone?” Of course, the answer they give is, “Oh, no! I never killed anyone.” To which I respond, “Have you been angry, hateful, unkind, spoken harshly to someone, or turned away from someone in need when you could have helped him? If so, you have broken this commandment.” Indeed, I wonder if this commandment is transgressed the most after commandment #1. “You shall not kill/murder” is a hard commandment. We just don’t go deep enough into it to see all that is involved with it.
“Not to kill” means not with hand, heart, mouth, signs, gestures, or bad counsel. Jesus’ words are clear: “Anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment. Anyone who says to his brother, ‘Raca” is answerable to the Sanhedrin. Anyone who says, ‘You fool will be in danger of the fire of hell.”
Outside of God’s Word, the greatest treasure you and your neighbor has is life and body. God would secure it from all violence and assault. With this commandment He builds a wall around us and says, “You shall not kill.” In His great love, the Lord cares for us, providing us with protection. Life Is Important to Him.

I. What He teaches us about it.
Quite a while ago (1988), during the winter Olympics, a young man was highly expected to win gold medals in the speed-skating competition. In his best event, the 500-meter, heavily favored to win, he came out of the first turn and crashed onto the ice against the boards. Later in the 1,000-meter event, he skated a world-record pace. But about two-thirds of the way through the event, he caught a blade in a crack in the ice on a straight-a-way and tumbled into a heap. Years of discipline and hard work, training and hoping, went sprawling on the ice with him (Dan Jansen).
How devastating! He had failed to achieve the goal of his young life, a goal which under normal conditions he would easily achieve. Though devastated he handled his disappointment with grace and maturity. “What happened this week,” he said, “has put things in a different perspective, and I don’t feel as bad as I would have.”
What had happened was the death of his 27-year-old sister who died earlier on the day of his first race. Although the prospect of owning a medal was dear to his heart, she was much dearer. Her life was far more important than owning a lifeless piece of metal.
Outside of God’s Word, the most precious earthly gift that God has given each person is the gift of life itself. God throws a protective shield around it and says, “Hands off. This life is mine. I gave it and I alone have the right to end it, for “your times are in my hands” (Ps.31:15). “Am I not your Father, the Creator, who made and formed you.…I bring to life and I put to death” (Dt.32:6,39).
God is every life’s author. He is the only one with the almighty and gracious ability to produce it. He may use natural means; He may use extraordinary means. But only He sanctions it; He alone gives it. Therefore, He has the right to take it. The power of control lies in the hands of the one who brings it about.
If I plant a garden and my seeds take root and grow into productive plants, does my neighbor have the right to come into my yard and pull up the plants? No. The power of control lies in the hands of the one who brings it about. That’s what God teaches us about His gift of life in the Scriptures. Life is in His hands.
But this is where men wrongly assume that prerogative for themselves. They take matters of life into their hands and end it through suicide, murder, mercy killing, abortion, unjust wars, etc. Man, without divine consent, assumes the role of Creator and says to the one he kills, “Your times are in my hands, not God’s hands.”
Furthermore, God teaches that killing goes beyond the taking of physical life. It includes hurting or harming the body. It includes verbal abuse and unrighteous anger. “Anyone who is angry with his brother or says Raca will be subject to judgment.” Again, He says, “Anyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him” (1Jn.3:15)
It includes the abuse of one’s own body through gluttony, drunkenness, and drug abuse (Dt.21:20f; Pv.23:1f) or needlessly exposing ourselves to danger (Mt.4:7). All of these and more are murder in God’s eyes. God clearly teaches us this in the Bible.
So then, like a kind father who knows our weakness, that we cannot even control an emotion like road-rage, He steps in and commands: “You shall not kill, neither with your hand, heart, mouth, signs, or gestures – nor with bad counsel and advice.” It all soon escalates into worse things. To keep life is hard for sin is set to destroy it. The wages of sin is death, just as it was in the beginning.
No sooner had sin entered our world than death raised its ugly head. After the Fall not only were Adam and Eve subject to death, but in the very first chapter which follows the record of their first disobedience, we have the record of man’s first cold-blooded murder. Cain killed his brother Abel. We may scowl at Cain, but we conveniently forget that every person has a murderous heart (Mt.15).
There is more that could be said about unjust wars that are not of defense or God’s command; of carelessness or neglect that ends in fatal accidents; of maliciously hurting one’s feelings; of causing grief, worry, sorrow, distress, or embitterment in life. As a line of defense, He has drawn the 5th Commandment: “You shall not kill.”
Why does He teach us these things? Because Life Is Important. It is God’s time of grace for every person, the time He gives to seek and find Him in His Word, to receive His forgiving grace that flows only through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. As the Bible says, “God wants all to be saved and come to a knowledge of the truth.” His greatest pleasure is seeing the sinner obtaining new life in Christ during his time on earth, living one’s days to the glory of God, and finding life with God in eternity. To help as best we can in this is an obligation that we have towards others in the limited time given us. So, God commands, “You shall not murder.”

II. He teaches me to be my brother’s keeper.
After Cain slew his brother, God came to Cain and asked, “Where is Abel, your brother?” Cain replied, “How should I know? Am I my brother’s keeper?” Are we our brother’s keepers? God’s answer is clear: “Yes, you are your brother’s keeper. Therefore, you are to help and befriend him in every need. Be merciful, kind, and forgiving towards him.” Instead of asking the question, “Am I my brother’s keeper?” I ought to plead, “Lord, have mercy on me for I have too often failed to be my brother’s keeper.”
To that end God sent His Son into this world to be our Brother and to dwell among us. “He came to His own,” the Bible says. “But His own did not receive Him” (Jn.1:11). His own flesh, His own countrymen, His own creatures whom He made met their Brother with hatred from their venomous hearts and murdered Him on the cross. He died, not just because of their sin, but He died for sin, all sin, our sin too. His blood does not cry for vengeance against us.
Rather it calls for pardon before His heavenly Father:
Glory be to Jesus, Who in bitter pains
Poured for me the life-blood From His sacred veins!
Grace and life eternal In that blood I find;
Blest be His compassion, Infinitely kind.
Abel’s blood for vengeance Pleaded to the skies;
But the blood of Jesus For our pardon cries (CW-402; TLH-158).
“In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace” (Ep.1:7).
So, we look to the cross of Jesus with a repentant sigh for all the times we have transgressed this commandment. There we find forgiveness for all…and more.
I look at that cross again, and I see the example of a brothers’ keeper – our Keeper. On that cross died the one of whom Peter writes, “No guile was found in His mouth. When He was reviled, He reviled not. When He suffered, He did not threaten” (1Pt.2:22f).
He teaches me to be my brother’s keeper. Learn from Him for the life God gives us is important, lasting from time into eternity. “Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, even as God, for Christ’s sake, has forgiven you” (Ep.4:32). God grant it in our lives of faith for Jesus’ sake. Amen.

The Sixth Sunday after Trinity                   July 16, 2023

Welcome in our Savior’s name. We are glad to have you worshipping with us today as we seek strength through the Gospel to live the new life of righteousness that Christ has won for us.

With this Sunday, the historical lessons of the Church for the Trinity Season focus our attention on the life of the saved. It is not just a heavenly life that will come to us later in eternity, but it is a life in the present in which we enjoy a newness of life and a “better” righteousness that makes us “alive in Christ” through faith in Him each day. As Christians enjoy this new life in Him, their daily lives reflect His love for them in all that they do and say. May life in the present be regarded as a time of grace to grow in that life now.

In the sermon text we continue in our study of the Ten Commandments with the Fifth Commandment. The first four commandments point our thoughts to those who are over us, first God, and then fathers, mothers, and all God’s representatives here on earth whom God uses to guide and bless us in His ways. The next commandments refer to our neighbor, who is our equal, and how we are to relate in godly ways to him.

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A Better Righteousness and Its New Life in Christ

The Preparation

Opening Thoughts on the Service

The Entrance Hymn: “God Himself Is Present”                                                           #917

Order of Worship: Service: Setting Two with Holy Communion:                 pages 172-180

Prayer of the Day

The Ministry of the Word

(The Lessons for the Day are taken from the Historic Pericope Series of the Christian Church.)

The Responses following each lesson are on page 178.

Ruth 1:1-18 The beginning of the story of Ruth and Naomi in which God tests their faith through hardship in their lives. Both women lost their husbands in death. Throughout their trials, Ruth remained faithful to the true God and to her mother-in-law, Naomi.

Romans 6:3-11 In Baptism Christians are made alive in Christ Jesus to live a new life of faith in Him. United with Him in His resurrection, they are no longer slaves to sin or death, but their lives in the present are lived to His glory.

The Gospel Acclamation for God’s Love                                                            page 179

Matthew 5:20-26 Near the beginning of the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus speaks of the righteousness that surpasses that of the Pharisees’. It comes to us by Christ and through faith in Him. If affects the Christian’s attitude towards his brother in faith as he sees the commandments from a different, fuller perspective.

The Sermon Hymn: “God of Grace and God of Glory”                                               #770

The Sermon:   Lord, Thy Will Be Done by Us… That We Realize the Importance of Life.

                       Exodus 20:13

Our Response to the Word

The Confession of Faith: The Nicene Creed                                                  page 180


The Offering

The Lord Blesses Us

The Order of Holy Communion                                                               pages 182-187

(We invite our communicant members to the Lord’s Table, believing that in the bread and the wine, they receive the Savior’s true body and blood for forgiveness of sins. Since Holy Communion implies a oneness of faith, our practice is that of close communion. We therefore ask visitors to speak with the Pastor before communing.)

The Distribution

The Distribution Hymn: “Draw Near and Take the Body of the Lord”                         #661

Thanksgiving & Blessing                                            Beginning the middle of page 187

Closing Hymn: “Savior, Again to Thy Dear Name We Raise”                                      #931

Silent Prayer

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The Organist: Jane Rips                                       The Preacher: Pastor Edwin Lehmann

Point to Ponder: “When evil thoughts come into your mind, remember this: God has commanded me to fear Him and He bids me not to kill anyone, not to harm anyone. I must fear Him who is above and not do this for His sake. You must look upon the Fifth Commandment as a wall which God has built against my anger. You see how hard this commandment is. Though many transgress it, they still go on wanting to be pious, though their hearts, mouths, and eyes are full of poison. Therefore, see to it that you fear God….And then help your neighbor with hand, mouth, and heart for the sake of God who has commanded you to do this.                  — Martin Luther on The Fifth Commandment

The Sixth Sunday after TrinityHistoric Series

Old Testament Lesson: Ruth 1:1-18 – Naomi & Ruth Come to Bethlehem

1 During the days of the judges, a famine occurred in the land. So a man left Bethlehem in Judah to stay awhile in the territory of Moab—he, his wife, and his two sons. The man’s name was Elimelek, his wife’s name was Naomi, and the names of his two sons were Mahlon and Kilion. They were from the clan of Ephrath from Bethlehem in Judah. They entered the territory of Moab and remained there. But Elimelek, Naomi’s husband, died, so she was left with her two sons. They then married Moabite wives. The name of the first was Orpah, and the name of the second was Ruth. They lived there for about ten years. But Naomi’s sons, Mahlon and Kilion, also died. So the woman was left without her two children and without her husband.

Then Naomi set out with her daughters-in-law to return from the territory of Moab, because while she was in the territory of Moab, she had heard that the Lord had graciously visited his people by providing them with food. So she left the place where she had been, and her two daughters-in-law left with her. They set out on the road to return to the land of Judah.

But Naomi said to her two daughters-in-law, “Go back. Both of you return to your mother’s house. May the Lord show you kindness as you have shown kindness to the dead and to me. May the Lord grant that each of you finds security in the house of a husband.” Then she kissed them, and they wept loudly. 10 But they said to her, “No, we will return with you to your people.” 11 Then Naomi said, “Turn back, my daughters. Why should you go with me? Am I going to give birth to any more sons who could become your husbands? 12 Turn back, my daughters. Go! For I am too old to be married to another husband. Suppose I say, ‘I have hope, and I will be married to another husband tonight, and I will even give birth to sons.’ 13 Would you wait for them until they grow up? On the basis of that hope would you give up the chance to marry another husband? No, my daughters. It is much more bitter for me than for you, because the hand of the Lord has reached out against me.”

14 They once again wept loudly. Then Orpah kissed her mother-in-law, but Ruth would not let her go. 15 Naomi said, “Look, your sister-in-law has returned to her people and to her gods. Go back! Follow your sister-in-law.” 16 But Ruth said, “Do not urge me to abandon you or to turn back from following you. Because wherever you go, I will go, and wherever you make your home, I will make my home. Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God. 17 Wherever you die, I will die, and there I will be buried. May the Lord punish me severely and double it if anything but death separates me from you.”18 When Naomi saw that Ruth was determined to go with her, she stopped urging her.

Epistle Lesson: Romans 6:3-11 – Dead to Sin, Living for God.

Or do you not know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him by this baptism into his death, so that just as he was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too would also walk in a new life. For if we have been united with him in the likeness of his death, we will certainly also be united with him in the likeness of his resurrection.

We know that our old self was crucified with him, to make our sinful body powerless, so that we would not continue to serve sin. For the person who has died has been declared free from sin. And since we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. We know that since Christ has been raised from the dead, he will never die again. Death no longer has control over him. 10 For the death he died, he died to sin once and for all, but the life he lives, he lives to God. 11 In the same way also consider yourselves dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus.

Gospel Lesson: Matthew 5:20-26 – Jesus Addresses the Sin of Anger

20 Indeed I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and experts in the law, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.

21 “You have heard that it was said to people long ago, ‘You shall not murder, and whoever murders will be subject to judgment.’ 22 But I tell you that everyone who is angry with his brother without a cause will be subject to judgment, and whoever says to his brother, ‘Raca,’ will have to answer to the Sanhedrin. But whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of hell fire.

23 “So if you are about to offer your gift at the altar, and there you remember that your brother has something against you, 24 leave your gift there in front of the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother. Then come and offer your gift.

25 “If someone accuses you, reach an agreement with him quickly, while you are with him on the way. Otherwise, your accuser may bring you to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you will be thrown into prison. 26 Amen, I tell you: You will never get out until you have paid the last penny.

The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version® (EHV®) © 2019

The Fifth Commandment

Thou shalt not kill.

What does this mean?

We should fear and love God that we may not hurt nor harm our neighbor in his body,

but help and befriend him in every bodily need, in every need and danger of life and body.

(English text as published in the Concordia Triglotta, 1921)

How this commandment is transgressed.

        He who provokes his neighbor to anger;

He who says “Raca” to his neighbor, which implies all manner of anger and hatred;

He who says “Fatue,” “thou fool.” To this category belong all utterances directed against the neighbor which imply contumely (haughty, scornful insult), profane invective (violent, verbal attack), abuse, slander, the imputation of evil motives, the sitting in judgment upon others, ridicule, and the like;

He who criticizes the sins and infirmities of a neighbor instead of covering and excusing them;

He who does not forgive an enemy, nor pray for him, befriend, and help him;

Here are to be mentioned all sins of anger and hatred, such as murder, war, pillage, arson, strife, contention, envy, malicious joy at the suffering of others;

Furthermore, he transgresses this commandment who is averse to works of mercy, even though this spirit is manifested only against an enemy;

He who sets people by the ears and stirs up trouble;

He who creates discord among people;

He who does not seek to reconcile those who are estranged;

He who does not oppose and prevent passion and contention wherever possible.

How this commandment is fulfilled.

Patience, meekness, kindness, love of peace, and always and everywhere a sweet and gracious heart which is free from hatred, passion, and bitterness against any person whatever, not even enemies excepted.

All that is taught concerning patience, meekness, peace, and concord pertains to this commandment.

(Martin Luther on: A Treatise on the Law, Faith, and Prayer of 1520)

Calendar & Announcements for Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church

A member congregation of the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod

4717 S Farm Rd 135 (Golden Avenue), Springfield, MO 65810

Church phone: 417.887.0886                         www.zionluthchurch.com

Pastor’s cell phone: 417.693.3244                 email: revelehmann@gmail.com

You can also find us on Facebook



July 16


July 17


July 18


July 19


July 20


July 21


July 22

Next Sun.

July 23

9:00 am

Divine Worship Service

with Holy Communion online -Facebook

10:15 am

Fellowship & Bible Study

6th Sunday after Trinity

(Pentecost 7)

Confirmation Class recessed for summer




11 am Midweek Bible Class








9:00 am

Divine Worship Service

online – Facebook

10:15 am

Fellowship & Bible Study


7th Sunday after Trinity

(Pentecost 8)


A Brief Bible Study on God’s Word for Today

Our faithfulness as Christians is a response to the faithfulness God has shown toward us. His love for us when we were unlovable and his salvation for us when we were without hope are divine acts of faithfulness. These acts inspire us to thanks and praise and to live a life that follows His will for us.

The Old Testament Lesson: Ruth 1:1-18 (the answers are found on the back side)

  1. What was more important to Ruth than finding another husband who would take care of her?
  2. Where does this Moabite widow fit into God’s Salvation Plan?

Those We Remember In Our Prayers: Greg Miller; William & Laurie Moon; Pauline Jaeger; Kirsten Jaster (Laurie Moon’s sister); Greg Pierson (the Long’s son-in-law); Libya, Jodi Milam’s granddaughter; Barbara Long; Lois Wiese; Barbara Breidel; John, Elisha & Isaac Covey; Lucille Huston, after a fall in the nursing home.

Favorite Hymns Song Service July is a 5 Sunday month. Write down some of your favorite hymns and we will see how many we can sing on the 30th.

Lord, May Thy Will Be Done By Us Today we continue in our journey through the Ten Commandments with Commandment #5. Each Sunday we will review a commandment and Martin Luther’s Catechism explanation of it. We would encourage each member and friend to read through the sections of each commandment from the Catechism the week before it is the sermon text for the day. What a good review of your precious confirmation instruction that would be! If you don’t have a catechism, see Pastor for one.  Next Sunday we look at the Sixth Commandment.

Quarterly Meeting Postponed With the absence of some of our congregational officers and the lack of ministry or business needs that must be carried out at this time, we will postpone the quarterly meeting of the voters that normally meets on the 3rd Sunday in July. In lieu of the quarterly meeting, pastor will share with you after the service some of the things that will be coming before us in the months ahead, but for which we need no direction from the voting assembly at this point.

Upcoming Services and Events

Sunday, July 30 – Favorite Hymns Song Service

July 31-Aug.3 – WELS 54th Biennial Convention in Saginaw, MI (Pastor Lehmann is a delegate from our area)

The Week in Review

Last Sunday Worship: 24; Bible Class 17; Midweek Bible Class: 4; Offerings: $1,115.

Next Sunday’s Lessons:               

The 7th Sunday after Trinity: Isaiah 62:6-12; Romans 6:19-23; Mark 8:1-9 (Historic Pericope Series); Commandment 6

Answer to Today’s Old Testament Lesson Brief Study:

  1. Remaining with her mother-in-law, and more importantly the one true God. Ruth would not give up the comfort of God’s promises in order to find another husband in a heathen land to take care of her in this life.
  2. Her great-grandson was King David. As such, she stands in the line of the promised Savior—David’s Son yet David’s Lord.


This week I am praying for……


Pastor Edwin Lehmann

Preacher: Pastor Edwin Lehmann