22nd Sunday after Pentecost: 05 Nov – Matthew 23:1-12 ~ the greatest among you must be a servant

22nd Sunday after Pentecost

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

Opening Prayer

Sovereign God, we have no father but you, no teacher but Christ. Conform our lives to the faith we profess, preserve us from arrogance and pride, and teach us in Christ the greatness of humility and service. We pray 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.

“A Mighty Fortress Is Our God” – Parkway Worship Ministry


Reading: Matthew 23:1-12 (NLT)

Jesus Criticizes the Religious Leaders

Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, “The teachers of religious law and the Pharisees are the official interpreters of the law of Moses. So practice and obey whatever they tell you, but don’t follow their example. For they don’t practice what they teach. They crush people with unbearable religious demands and never lift a finger to ease the burden.

“Everything they do is for show. On their arms they wear extra wide prayer boxes with Scripture verses inside, and they wear robes with extra long tassels. And they love to sit at the head table at banquets and in the seats of honor in the synagogues. They love to receive respectful greetings as they walk in the marketplaces, and to be called ‘Rabbi.’

“Don’t let anyone call you ‘Rabbi,’ for you have only one teacher, and all of you are equal as brothers and sisters. And don’t address anyone here on earth as ‘Father,’ for only God in heaven is your Father. And don’t let anyone call you ‘Teacher,’ for you have only one teacher, the Messiah. The greatest among you must be a servant. But those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.

Intercessory Prayer

Merciful God God: You restore the crushed spirit of the humble and revive the courage of those with repentant hearts. Hear our prayers as we come before Your throne of grace –

+ For ministers of the Word and Sacraments — that they may practice what they preach….
+ For leaders of church and state — that they may be true servants….
+ For peace in the world — and an end to violence and terror….
+ For all who teach Your word — that they may share their knowledge with humility….
+ For those who mourn the loss of loved ones — that they may be comforted….
+ For those who are sick, in mind or body or spirit — that they may be healed….
+ For those who have died in Christ – that they may receive their just reward in heaven….

God of all goodness, You grant the desires of the humble: hear our prayers and grant them in accordance with Your perfect will, through Christ our Lord. Amen.

“Humble Thyself” – Acappella


Blessing – 1 Thessalonians 3:12-13 (NLT)

May the Lord make you increase and abound in love for one another and for all,… so that He may establish your hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his saints.

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