13th Sunday after Pentecost: 03 Sep – Matthew 16:21-27 ~ give up, take up, and follow

13th Sunday after Pentecost

+ In the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen!

Opening Prayer

O God, whose word burns like a fire within us, grant us a bold and faithful spirit, that in your strength we may be unafraid to speak your word and follow where you lead. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God for ever and ever.

“Let It Rise” – Praise & Harmony Singers


Reading: Matthew 16:21-27 (NLT)

From then on Jesus began to tell his disciples plainly that it was necessary for him to go to Jerusalem, and that he would suffer many terrible things at the hands of the elders, the leading priests, and the teachers of religious law. He would be killed, but on the third day he would be raised from the dead.

But Peter took him aside and began to reprimand him for saying such things. “Heaven forbid, Lord,” he said. “This will never happen to you!”

Jesus turned to Peter and said, “Get away from me, Satan! You are a dangerous trap to me. You are seeing things merely from a human point of view, not from God’s.”

Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross, and follow me. If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it. And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul? For the Son of Man will come with his angels in the glory of his Father and will judge all people according to their deeds.

Intercessory Prayer

Brothers and sisters in Christ, we pray to our God, who has always been our help.

+ For Christians who suffer persecution for their faith — that they may hold firm…. Lord, hear us.
+ For those who endure criticism for doing the right thing — that they may have the courage to persevere…. Lord, hear us.
+ For the grace to support our fellow pilgrims in their hardships — that we may become more aware of each other’s needs…. Lord, hear us.
+ For people suffering because of severe flooding along the Gulf Coast — that your people may come to their aid…. Lord, hear us.
+ For all who struggle with illness, of mind or body — that their way of the cross may bring them to glory…. Lord, hear us.
+ For church leaders taking on new responsibilites this year — that you may sustain them when they feel lonely or downhearted…. Lord, hear us.
+ For those who have died in Christ – that they may also share his victory and resurrection to eternal life…. Lord, hear us.

O Lord our God, your love is better than life: come to our help, we pray, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

“Take Up Your Cross” – The Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir


Concluding Prayer – Psalm 104:33-35 (NLT)

I will sing to the Lord as long as I live. I will praise my God to my last breath!

May all my thoughts be pleasing to him, for I rejoice in the Lord. Let all sinners vanish from the face of the earth; let the wicked disappear forever. Let all that I am praise the Lord.

Praise the Lord!

+ In the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen!

Categories: Life in Christ

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