The 2nd Sunday of End Time: Last Judgment November 7, 2021
Text: John 5:19-24 CW 3 Year Series B 21:2285
Theme: The One with (New) Life Is You.
It was a Sabbath Day, but that didn’t mean much to the sick man. He couldn’t walk with the crowds to the temple, couldn’t worship God when the sacrifices were offered, couldn’t stand to receive the blessing by the priest. A special day? For a man confined to a pallet because he cannot move, every day is the same.
For most people a bed is a place for dreams and pleasant rest. But for this man it was a prison. Thirty-eight years, two-thirds of a lifetime for most people in Jesus’ day, he had lain on a hard pallet, day and night. He could crawl a few feet if he had to, but it was slow and painful work. Mostly he lay there in despair.
Every day he laid by a pool in Jerusalem known as Bethesda. It means “House of Mercy/Grace.” Five porches surrounded it, crowded with the sick, the blind, the deaf, the crippled, and the dying. They lay there because every once-in-a-while it was said that an angel was sent to stir the waters. Whoever got into the waters first was healed of his infirmity. Many long hours the crippled man watched the waters. When they were stirred, he struggled to crawl there. But, to his dismay, someone always stepped in before him. Any hope of getting well had long vanished.
On this day an honored Guest strolled through the porches. It was the time of a Jewish feast (maybe Harvest or Booths,cf.4:35). Not many visitors came here. It wasn’t a pretty sight with the sick and crippled lying about. The Visitor went to the pallet of the paralyzed man. In compassion He looked down on the withered body and despairing face. “Do you want to be healed?” he asked. The crippled man answered, “Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am going, another steps down before me.” “Get up, take your bed, and walk!” the Stranger commanded. At His word the man felt new life, new strength surging through his body. In the excitement that followed, the Stranger slipped away. The healed man didn’t even know His name. He rose to his feet, picked up his pallet, and left.
The man with new life had not gone far when some of the Jewish leaders stopped him. They did not stop him in order to praise God that a man who had been sick so long was suddenly was filled with new life. No. Angrily they rebuked him, “Don’t you know it’s the Sabbath? It’s not lawful for you to be carrying anything. (according to the laws made by the Jewish leaders).
“The man who healed me told me to take up my bed and go.”
“Who is the man who told you that?” they asked. He could not tell them. He did not know the Stranger’s name. But you and I do.
Only Jesus can heal with a word. Only He gives a man new life by means of His word. When He speaks, His word is the power of God not just to heal a paralyzed man, but it is the power of God to salvation (Ro.1:16). As Jesus said here, “Anyone who hears my word and believes Him who sent me has eternal life.” HAS life! At the very hearing of His word and in the believing of it, life is given.
In both cases, whether it be the healing of an infirmity or the giving of eternal life, the word of Christ is full of efficacious power. That power is in the word itself for “the Word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and spirit, of joints and marrow” (Hb.4:12). “It does not return to God empty but accomplishes the purpose for which He sends it” (Is.55:11).
The Word itself has life-giving power. It’s that word that brought you to faith; not yourself. It’s that word that gives you new life; nothing else. Such power is never due to any goodness or ability on your part, the hearer. Just like this man could never bring about his own healing, so also no one can produce within himself faith that leads to the life that lasts forever. It’s all about the Word and its power. It alone heals; it alone draws you to new life in God.
Yet, that word never works irresistibly. Man can, if he wants to, exert his own will and resist all the trust-working power of the Word. Men can prevent it from working faith and leading to life in God. That’s what happened to the Jewish leaders here.
When they found out that it was Jesus who had healed the man on the Sabbath and commanded him to carry his bed, they spitefully turned on Jesus for ignoring their rules. Jesus said, “But God, who is my Father, works on the Sabbath, and so I work too.”
God works on the Sabbath because He is above the law. Indeed, the law comes from Him. So also, Jesus works for He too is above the law.
Oh! those words made them even angrier than the healing He had done because now Jesus claimed to be equal to God. He said, “The Son can do nothing on His own, but only what He sees the Father doing. Indeed, the Son does exactly what the Father does…. Just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so also the Son gives life to those He wishes….So that all should honor the Son just as they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him.”
Considering those words, it is impossible to understand how anybody can say that Christ never directly claimed to be the Son of God. There is perfect unity, perfect equality between the Father and the Son – Jesus. He could not make a more emphatic statement of His divinity or a more unmistakable demand for divine worship than this. Yet, there are those who claim to worship the Father, yet refuse to give the same honor to the Son. Such people honor neither. Here is a word with which you should warn the Jehovah’s Witness or the Mormon who comes knocking on your door, for if Judgment Day falls before they acknowledge and honor Jesus as true God and the only Savior, they will be lost in the Judgment
Speaking of the Judgment and new life, Jesus continued, “Amen, Amen, I tell you: Anyone who hears my word and believes Him who sent me has eternal life. He is not going to come into judgment but has crossed over from death to life.”
Jesus’ disciples needed to hear those words just as much as we need to hear those words because for them all hell would soon break loose over them as they went out to proclaim the Gospel. Satan, working through unbelieving men, like these Jews, was going to attack them unmercifully with trials of all kinds.
After Jesus’ went back to heaven, the devil hit them hard. James was imprisoned and beheaded; John was exiled to a remote island; Peter and Andrew were crucified; Nathanael was skinned alive; Thomas was speared to death; others were set on fire, ashes scattered in the wind. But even though their heads would be cut off or bodies burned, Jesus assured them they would live on because they were men who already enjoyed new life in Him by faith.
The verb tense is important. For believers this is not about a future day, this is about the present: “whoever believes has (as of that moment) eternal life. He is not going to come into judgment.”
Are you afraid of thoughts of Judgment Day? When you think of what the Bible tells us about it, it’s not hard to see why people are afraid and choose to hide their faces from it. Many think of Judgment Day with dread and terror – the darkness, the gloom, the distress, the fire, the brimstone, the weeping and wailing of souls in torment? “Look!” the prophet Malachi cried in the OT lesson, “The day is coming, burning like a blast furnace. Every evil doer will be stubble and the day will set them on fire.” Many are adversely affected by those images and stand in dread of the judgment.
But, dear friend, if you hold to Christ as your Savior, listen to what He says: “Anyone who hears my word and believes Him who sent me has eternal life. He is not going to come into judgment but has crossed over from death to life.” Through faith the man with life is you!
By faith in Christ we are not just sinners waiting to be judged. We are saints, washed clean in the blood of Christ who with His own blood paid the price for sin and endured the judgment for sin so that Paul writes, “There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Ro.8:1). By faith you already have eternal life.
You know, we often make the mistake of thinking that eternal life is something which God will give us at some distant future date. In other words, when my body ceases to function and I die this temporal death, then, through faith in Christ, I’ll have it. But the fact is when you come to faith in Christ, that day you have eternal life. “Crossing from death to life” is nothing less than conversion to faith, regeneration which the Holy Spirit works in hearts in the present. It’s a present reality, not just a future thing. Oh, it’s not the fullness of life that will be there in heaven at your Savior’s side, but the judgment for believers has already been completed, carried by Christ. And the verdict reads, “Alive eternally in Christ.” God wants you to know that the man with new life is you, right now.
What a difference that makes as you who hear Jesus’ words, believe, and go on with your life in the present. There may be difficulties and sad times that confront you. But the fear of death, and worse, the final judgment is taken away. The Lord Jesus, who enjoys perfect unity and equality with the Father did it and said it. What a promise from no lesser an authority than God Himself. He may give healing and new life to a crippled man by His word, but He gives eternal life already to those who hear His word and believe the Father who sent Him. The One with New Life Is You. God grant it to us 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
You can also find us on Facebook
The Second Sunday in End Time: Last Judgment November 7, 2021
“Look! The day is coming, burning like a blast furnace….But for you who fear my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing it its wings.” Malachi 4:1-2
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, You have been our dwelling place throughout all generations. You turn mortals back to dust. You sweep them away in the sleep of death. Teach us to number our days aright to gain a heart of wisdom.” (Psalm 90)
W h a t T h i s S u n d a y i s A b o u t
The Last Judgment. The readings today set in sharp contrast the attitudes that will exist towards the end of this world when our Lord returns in judgment upon the earth. The attitude of the unbeliever in talking of the judgment can only be denial or terror. But the attitude of the believer is formed by God’s Word.
As the Spirit works through the Word, He creates faith during the believer’s time on earth, shapes his confidence in the face of death, and gives peace in the judgment. For in Christ the believer knows the result: “Not guilty for Jesus’ sake!” is the happy verdict to all who trust in Him.
Therefore, we pray: Lord God almighty, so rule and govern our hearts and minds by Your Holy Spirit that we may always look forward to the end of this present evil age and to the day of Your righteous judgment. Keep us steadfast in true and living faith and present us at last holy and blameless before You; for Jesus’ sake. 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: Malachi 4:1-2
On Judgment Day what dread awaits those who despised God’s Word. All that they worshipped now will perish and be seen for the nothing it always was. But what joy is in store for those who love the Lord and approach Him in Christ. The Sun of Righteousness will warm them.
The Epistle Lesson: Hebrews 9:24-28
Christ is a greater High Priest than all the Old Testament priests. They had to offer sacrifices for sin often. He sacrificed Himself once to pay for all sin. Now He has entered heaven, awaiting the Last Day when he will receive those who believe in Him to Himself.
The Gospel Lesson: John 5:19-24
The Triune God is unified in essence and purpose. The works of the Father and the Son especially coincide with each other and make them worthy of equal honor. Fail to honor the Son, and one fails to honor the Father. Concerning the final judgment, the Father has left all things in the hands of the Son.
O u r P r a c t i c e o f H o l y C o m m u n i o n
Out of deep love for the truth of God’s Word and precious souls, we follow the practice of Close Communion in our congregation. This has been the practice of Christians for centuries and reflects the Bible’s teaching on unity of faith in the reception of the Supper (1 Cor.10:17). It does not judge a person’s heart but anticipates agreement in that which God says. Since we do not wish to put anyone in the position of declaring such agreement with us before study in the Word is possible, we ask that only those who are communicant members of this or another Wisconsin Synod or ELS congregation come to receive the Sacrament.
The Organist: Jane Rips The Preacher: Pastor Edwin Lehmann
Point to Ponder: “How can Judgment Day and dying be terrible to a believing heart? Who will harm the man when the great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, to whom the Day of Judgment belongs, is on his side and stands before him with all His glory, greatness, majesty, and might? None other will hold court on the Day of Judgment than He who gave Himself for us….But now, since He has given Himself for you, what can terrify you? Oh, here is great, sure security – Christ!”
Martin Luther on The Judge Is Our Savior
Outline of Our Worship
Opening Thoughts on the Service
Opening Hymn: #613
Order of Worship: The Common Service with Holy Communion: page 15-17
Prayer of the Day
The Ministry of the Word
Hymn Response: #382
The Gospel Responses: pg.18
The Nicene Creed pg.18
Sermon: John 5:19-24 The Man with New Life Is You!
Our Response to the Word
The Offertory & Offering: page 20
Prayers & The Lord’s Prayer
The Lord Blesses Us
Order of Holy Communion Hymnal pages 21-23
(Visitors: Please read the box on page 2 regarding Holy Communion)
Distribution Hymn: #304
Thanksgiving Prayer & Blessing Hymnal pages 24-25
Closing Hymn: #212 st.1-2
Second Sunday of End Time: Last Judgment – Series B
Old Testament: Malachi 4:1-2 – The Day of the Lord Is Coming
1Look! The day is coming, burning like a blast furnace. All the arrogant and every evildoer will be stubble. The day that is coming will set them on fire, says the Lord of Armies, a day that will not leave behind a root or branch for them. 2But for you who fear my name, the sun of righteousness will rise, and there will be healing in its wings.
Epistle Lesson: Hebrews 9:24-28 – One Perfect Sacrifice
24For Christ did not enter a handmade sanctuary, a representation of the true sanctuary. Instead, he entered into heaven itself, now to appear before God on our behalf. 25And he did not enter to offer himself many times, as the high priest enters the Most Holy Place year after year with blood that is not his own. 26Otherwise he would have needed to suffer many times since the creation of the world. But now he has appeared once and for all, at the climax of the ages, in order to take away sin by the sacrifice of himself. 27And, just as it is appointed for people to die only once and after this comes the judgment, 28so also Christ was offered only once to take away the sins of many, and he will appear a second time—without sin—to bring salvation to those who are eagerly waiting for him.
Gospel Lesson: John 5:19-24 – Honoring the Father and the Son
19Jesus answered them directly, “Amen, Amen, I tell you: The Son can do nothing on his own, but only what he sees the Father doing. Indeed, the Son does exactly what the Father does. 20For the Father loves the Son and shows him everything he is doing. And he will show him even greater works than these so that you will be amazed. 21For just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so also the Son gives life to those he wishes.
22“In fact, the Father judges no one, but has entrusted all judgment to the Son, 23so that all should honor the Son just as they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent him. 24Amen, Amen, I tell you: Anyone who hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He is not going to come into judgment but has crossed over from death to life.
The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version® (EHV®) copyright © 2019 The Wartburg Project.
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
with Holy Communion
Fellowship & Brief Bible Study
End Time 2:
Church Council Meeting
Midweek Bible Class
|Women’s Retreat at Heit’s Point, MO
Divine Worship Service
online – Facebook
Fellowship & Brief Bible Study
End Time 3:
A Brief Bible Study on God’s Word for Today
At the end of the world, Jesus will come back in glory to judge both the living and the dead. Those who believe in Him receive a verdict of “not-guilty”. Those who do not believe stand condemned to the eternal suffering of hell.
The Epistle Lesson: Hebrews 9:24-28 (answers are found on the back side)
- The Book of Hebrews demonstrates how Jesus is superior to every aspect of the Jewish religion. How is Jesus superior to the Old Testament priests and sacrifices?
- According to verse 27, what happens to a person when he or she dies?
Those We Remember In Our Prayers: Clyde Johnson; Greg Miller; Lou Schulz; Norine Richardson; Jodi Milam; William & Laurie Moon; Patsy Mickelson; Pauline Jaeger; Dave Ballou now in rehab at Quail Creek Nursing Home; Lois Wiese; Barbara Long; John Workentine, Schulz’s brother-in-law; Khendra Murdoch & Jason, her husband.
No Face Mask Regulations Facemasks are not required in a church setting in Springfield. If you feel more comfortable wearing a face mask, you may certainly do so. Masks, disposable gloves, and sanitizer are in the narthex and the fellowship hall for your use.
Do You Know what’s in the recently published Christian Worship Hymnal? There are vibrant hymns, old and new; liturgical settings that follow the historical pattern of worship; an array of more psalms; personal prayers; daily devotionals; there is even Luther’s Small Catechism. That itself is going back to a tradition that used to be included in Lutheran produced hymnals. Along with the Psalter book containing settings for all 150 psalms, the recently published Christian Worship Hymnal is rich in devotional materials for both the church and home. We invite you to examine copies in the fellowship hall or go online at https://www.christianworship.com
Friday-Sunday, November 12-14: LWMS sponsored Women’s Retreat at Heit’s Pt.
Sunday, November 21: Pre-Thanksgiving Potluck after the service
Thursday, November 25: Thanksgiving Day Worship at 10 am
The Week in Review
Last Sunday’s Worship Attendance: 25; Bible Class: 11; Midweek Bible Class: 3; Offerings: $1,544.
Next Sunday’s Lessons:
End Time 3 – Saints Triumphant: Daniel 12:1-3; Hebrews 10-11-18; John 5:25-29 (CW 3 Year Series B)
Answers to Today’s Epistle Lesson Brief Study:
- Jesus did not enter an earthly tabernacle (or temple), but rather heaven itself. He did not need to offer sacrifices over and over again like the priests of the Old Testament. The sacrifice Jesus offered on the cross paid for sin once and for all. No other sacrifice needs to be made.
- When a person dies, his body goes back to the ground and his soul goes before God to be judged.
This week I am praying for……