+ In the Name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Opening: (A Collect for Sabbath Rest – Saturday)
Almighty God, who after the creation of the world rested from all your works and set aside a day of rest for all your creatures: Grant that we, putting away all earthly anxieties, may be duly prepared to meet you in worship, and that our rest here upon earth may be a preparation for the eternal rest promised to your people in heaven; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Morning Reading: Matthew 4:12-25 (NLT)
The Ministry of Jesus Begins
When Jesus heard that John had been arrested, he left Judea and returned to Galilee. He went first to Nazareth, then left there and moved to Capernaum, beside the Sea of Galilee, in the region of Zebulun and Naphtali. This fulfilled what God said through the prophet Isaiah:
“In the land of Zebulun and of Naphtali, beside the sea, beyond the Jordan River,
in Galilee where so many Gentiles live, the people who sat in darkness have seen a great light. And for those who lived in the land where death casts its shadow, a light has shined.”
From then on Jesus began to preach, “Repent of your sins and turn to God, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near.”
The First Disciples
One day as Jesus was walking along the shore of the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers—Simon, also called Peter, and Andrew—throwing a net into the water, for they fished for a living. Jesus called out to them, “Come, follow me, and I will show you how to fish for people!” And they left their nets at once and followed him.
A little farther up the shore he saw two other brothers, James and John, sitting in a boat with their father, Zebedee, repairing their nets. And he called them to come, too. They immediately followed him, leaving the boat and their father behind.
Crowds Follow Jesus
Jesus traveled throughout the region of Galilee, teaching in the synagogues and announcing the Good News about the Kingdom. And he healed every kind of disease and illness. News about him spread as far as Syria, and people soon began bringing to him all who were sick. And whatever their sickness or disease, or if they were demon possessed or epileptic or paralyzed—he healed them all. Large crowds followed him wherever he went—people from Galilee, the Ten Towns, Jerusalem, from all over Judea, and from east of the Jordan River.
Jesus announces the Good News about the Kingdom.
Jesus traveled throughout the region of Galilee,
teaching in the synagogues and announcing the Good News about the Kingdom.
And he healed every kind of disease and illness.
– Matthew 4:23 –
As an itinerant preacher, Jesus engaged in three primary activities: teaching His disciples, preaching good news to the multitudes, and healing the sick.
His ministry began with the Jewish people of northern Galilee: teaching in synagogues, preaching about the messianic Kingdom, and healing diseased people. Jesus’ miracles dealt with “incurable” afflictions and attracted a large following. Jesus’ message of Good News was God’s pledge to end the grief and deal with the suffering of our fallen, sin-filled world.
Questions for consideration:
- Jesus’ began his ministry with a call to repentance. Does that resonate with you? Is there sin in your life that you need to reject and turn instead to God for help and redirection? Please explain.
- Jesus invited people to leave what they were doing and follow him; and they did. Have you heard Jesus’ call to follow him? What had to be left behind? How did you respond? Please explain.
- Jesus healed the sick and suffering. Have you, or someone you know, been healed by Jesus? Do you need healing now? Please explain.
Morning Prayer: Prayer for Thy Kingdom Come
God of our salvation, hope of all the ends of the earth, we pray: Your kingdom come.
- That the world may know Jesus Christ as the Prince of Peace, we pray: Your kingdom come.
- That all who are estranged and without hope may be brought near in the blood of Christ, we pray: Your kingdom come.
- That we may be one in serving and proclaiming the gospel, we pray: Your kingdom come.
- That we may be bold to speak Your word while You stretch out Your healing hand to save, we pray: Your kingdom come.
- That we may be generous in giving, faithful in serving, bold in proclaiming, we pray: Your kingdom come.
- That we may welcome and support all whom You call to faith, we pray: Your kingdom come.
- That all who serve the gospel may be kept in safety while Your word accomplishes its purpose, we pray: Your kingdom come.
- That all who suffer for the gospel may know the comfort and glory of Christ, we pray: Your kingdom come.
- That the day may come when every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, we pray: Your kingdom come.
Almighty God, by Your Holy Spirit You have made us one with Your saints in heaven and on earth: grant that in our earthly pilgrimage we may ever be supported by this fellowship of love and prayer, and know ourselves surrounded by their witness to Your power and mercy; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
“Thy Kingdom Come” – Reba Rambo, Dony McGuire
Every path you walk, My feet have been there long before you
Every tear you cry, My eyes have already known
I’ve reached the highest hill, I see you struggling up the mountain
My voice can be your guide, will you trust Me with your life
Lord, Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done I pray
Forgive me when I fall, forgive me when I fail
Lord I do believe, but help my unbelief
‘Til heaven and earth unite, It’s not my will but Thine
I know every way you can be tempted to stop trying
The world was offered Me, if I misused My power
I’ve reached a higher goal, I became Lord of all creation
You can live in paradise, if you’ll trust Me with your life
Lord, it gets so dark I just can’t see the right way
My word will be a lamp unto your feet
Lord, I get so tired I just can’t keep on traveling
My joy will be your strength, you can do all things
May the peace of the Lord Christ go with you, wherever He may send you. May He guide you through the wilderness, and protect you through the storm. May He bring you home rejoicing at the wonders He has shown you. May He bring you home rejoicing once again into our doors.
+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen
Categories: Life in Christ