Easter | 2nd Sunday 24 Apr 2022: Acts 5:27-32; Ps 111; Rev 1:9-19; John 20:19-31 ~ The blessings of blind faith.

Easter | 2nd Sunday 24 Apr 2022

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

Opening:

Almighty and everlasting God, who in the Paschal mystery
established the new covenant of reconciliation: Grant that all
who have been reborn into the fellowship of Christ’s Body
may show forth in their lives what they profess by their faith;
through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you
and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Jesus told [Thomas],
“You believe because you have seen me.
Blessed are those who believe without seeing me.”

(John 20:29)

__________

Thine Be The GloryPark Church

__________

Acts Reading: Acts 5:27-32 (NLT)

5:27 Then they brought the apostles before the high council, where the high priest confronted them. “We gave you strict orders never again to teach in this man’s name!” he said. “Instead, you have filled all Jerusalem with your teaching about him, and you want to make us responsible for his death!”

But Peter and the apostles replied, “We must obey God rather than any human authority. The God of our ancestors raised Jesus from the dead after you killed him by hanging him on a cross. Then God put him in the place of honor at his right hand as Prince and Savior. He did this so the people of Israel would repent of their sins and be forgiven. We are witnesses of these things and so is the Holy Spirit, who is given by God to those who obey him.”

__________

Psalms: Psalm 111/112 – IQEDEM – Psalm 111/112
(turn on cc translation)

__________

NT Reading: Revelation 1:9-19 (NLT)

Vision of the Son of Man

1:9 I, John, am your brother and your partner in suffering and in God’s Kingdom and in the patient endurance to which Jesus calls us. I was exiled to the island of Patmos for preaching the word of God and for my testimony about Jesus. It was the Lord’s Day, and I was worshiping in the Spirit. Suddenly, I heard behind me a loud voice like a trumpet blast. It said, “Write in a book everything you see, and send it to the seven churches in the cities of Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.”

When I turned to see who was speaking to me, I saw seven gold lampstands. And standing in the middle of the lampstands was someone like the Son of Man. He was wearing a long robe with a gold sash across his chest. His head and his hair were white like wool, as white as snow. And his eyes were like flames of fire. His feet were like polished bronze refined in a furnace, and his voice thundered like mighty ocean waves. He held seven stars in his right hand, and a sharp two-edged sword came from his mouth. And his face was like the sun in all its brilliance.

When I saw him, I fell at his feet as if I were dead. But he laid his right hand on me and said, “Don’t be afraid! I am the First and the Last. I am the living one. I died, but look—I am alive forever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and the grave.

“Write down what you have seen—both the things that are now happening and the things that will happen.

__________

Revelation SongKari Jobe

__________

Gospel Reading: John 20:19-31 (NLT)

Jesus Appears to His Disciples

20:19 That Sunday evening the disciples were meeting behind locked doors because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Suddenly, Jesus was standing there among them! “Peace be with you,” he said. As he spoke, he showed them the wounds in his hands and his side. They were filled with joy when they saw the Lord! Again he said, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.” Then he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive anyone’s sins, they are forgiven. If you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”

Jesus Appears to Thomas

20:24 One of the twelve disciples, Thomas (nicknamed the Twin), was not with the others when Jesus came. They told him, “We have seen the Lord!”

But he replied, “I won’t believe it unless I see the nail wounds in his hands, put my fingers into them, and place my hand into the wound in his side.”

Eight days later the disciples were together again, and this time Thomas was with them. The doors were locked; but suddenly, as before, Jesus was standing among them. “Peace be with you,” he said. Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and look at my hands. Put your hand into the wound in my side. Don’t be faithless any longer. Believe!”

“My Lord and my God!” Thomas exclaimed.

Then Jesus told him, “You believe because you have seen me. Blessed are those who believe without seeing me.”

Purpose of the Book

20:30 The disciples saw Jesus do many other miraculous signs in addition to the ones recorded in this book. But these are written so that you may continue to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing in him you will have life by the power of his name.

__________

THE BLESSING in Hebrew! HA BRACHA הברכה ~ Jerusalem, Israel | Joshua Aaron

__________

Prayer: Faithand Worship | John Birch 

It is only right,
with all the powers of our heart and mind,
to praise You Father
and Your Only-begotten Son,
Our Lord Jesus Christ:
Dear Father, by Your wondrous
condescension of loving-kindness toward us,
Your servants, You gave up Your Son.
Dear Jesus You paid the debt of Adam
for us to the Eternal Father by
Your Blood poured
fourth in loving-kindness.
You cleared away the darkness of sin
By Your magnificent and radiant Resurrection.
You broke the bonds of death
and rose from the grave as a Conqueror.
You reconciled heaven and earth.
Our life had no hope of eternal happiness
before You redeemed us.
Your Resurrection has washed away our sins,
restored our innocence and brought us joy.
How inestimable is the tenderness
of Your love!

Saint Gregory the Great’s Easter Prayer

Closing: Faithand Worship | John Birch 

May the peace of God enfold us,
The love of God uphold us,
The wisdom of God control us.

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

The Second Sunday of Easter, 19 April 2020 – John 20:19-31, 1 Peter 1:3-9, Psalm 111 ~ “Blessed are those who believe without seeing me.”

The Second Sunday of Easter, 19 April 2020

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

Opening:

Almighty and everlasting God, through the Passion, Death and Resurrection of Jesus, Christ, you established the new covenant of reconciliation: Grant that all who have been reborn into the fellowship of Christ’s Body may practice in their lives what they profess by faith; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

__________

Above All – Michael W. Smith

__________

A Reading from the Gospels: John 20:19-31 (NLT)

Jesus Appears to His Disciples

That Sunday evening the disciples were meeting behind locked doors because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Suddenly, Jesus was standing there among them! “Peace be with you,” he said. As he spoke, he showed them the wounds in his hands and his side. They were filled with joy when they saw the Lord! Again he said, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.” Then he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive anyone’s sins, they are forgiven. If you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”

Jesus Appears to Thomas

One of the twelve disciples, Thomas (nicknamed the Twin), was not with the others when Jesus came. They told him, “We have seen the Lord!”

But he replied, “I won’t believe it unless I see the nail wounds in his hands, put my fingers into them, and place my hand into the wound in his side.”

Eight days later the disciples were together again, and this time Thomas was with them. The doors were locked; but suddenly, as before, Jesus was standing among them. “Peace be with you,” he said. Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and look at my hands. Put your hand into the wound in my side. Don’t be faithless any longer. Believe!”

“My Lord and my God!” Thomas exclaimed.

Then Jesus told him, “You believe because you have seen me. Blessed are those who believe without seeing me.”

Purpose of the Book

The disciples saw Jesus do many other miraculous signs in addition to the ones recorded in this book. But these are written so that you may continue to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing in him you will have life by the power of his name.
__________

A Reading from the Book of Acts: Acts 2:14, 22-32 (NLT)

Peter Preaches to the Crowd

Then Peter stepped forward with the eleven other apostles and shouted to the crowd, “Listen carefully, all of you, fellow Jews and residents of Jerusalem! Make no mistake about this.
_____

“People of Israel, listen! God publicly endorsed Jesus the Nazarene by doing powerful miracles, wonders, and signs through him, as you well know. But God knew what would happen, and his prearranged plan was carried out when Jesus was betrayed. With the help of lawless Gentiles, you nailed him to a cross and killed him. But God released him from the horrors of death and raised him back to life, for death could not keep him in its grip. King David said this about him:

‘I see that the Lord is always with me. I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me.
No wonder my heart is glad, and my tongue shouts his praises! My body rests in hope.
For you will not leave my soul among the dead or allow your Holy One to rot in the grave.
You have shown me the way of life, and you will fill me with the joy of your presence.’

“Dear brothers, think about this! You can be sure that the patriarch David wasn’t referring to himself, for he died and was buried, and his tomb is still here among us. But he was a prophet, and he knew God had promised with an oath that one of David’s own descendants would sit on his throne. David was looking into the future and speaking of the Messiah’s resurrection. He was saying that God would not leave him among the dead or allow his body to rot in the grave.

“God raised Jesus from the dead, and we are all witnesses of this.”
_________

Tehillim: Psalm 111– Tav Mem Bet

__________

Prayers of Intercession:

Almighty and everlasting God: we thank you and praise you with all our hearts!

+ For all who love you remember your Son’s death for the forgiveness of their sins….

+ For all who love you remember your Son’s resurrection for their empowerment….

+ For all who live in you remember their transformation by your Word and Spirit….

Almighty and everlasting God: everything you do is glorious and majestic, and your power to bring justice will never end.

+ For the honor of your name, show your kindness, justice and mercy to all who are affected by this pandemic….

+ For the honor of your name, provide the essential supplies needed to all who are affected by this pandemic….

+ For the honor of your name, pour out your Spirit and show the nations of the world your mighty power….

+ For the honor of your name, give wisdom and good sense to all who are entrusted with leadership….

Almighty and everlasting God: your ways are true and right and fair – you are trustworthy and faithful. Renew us in faith and joy-filled expectation, through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever. Amen.
__________

A Reading from the Epistles: 1 Peter 1:3-9 (NLT)

The Hope of Eternal Life

All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is by his great mercy that we have been born again, because God raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Now we live with great expectation, and we have a priceless inheritance—an inheritance that is kept in heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay. And through your faith, God is protecting you by his power until you receive this salvation, which is ready to be revealed on the last day for all to see.

So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you must endure many trials for a little while. These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.

You love him even though you have never seen him. Though you do not see him now, you trust him; and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible joy. The reward for trusting him will be the salvation of your souls.
_________

Grace Of The Lord Jesus Christ – Simon Khorolskiy & Brothers

___________

Closing: 1 Peter 3:8-9 (NLT)

You love him even though you have never seen him. Though you do not see him now, you trust him; and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible joy. The reward for trusting him will be the salvation of your souls.

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

2nd Sunday of Easter, 28 April 2019: Revelation 1:9-19, John 20:19-31 ~ believing in him you will have life

The Second Sunday of Easter

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

Opening Prayer:

Almighty and everlasting God, who in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ established the new covenant of reconciliation: Grant that we who have been reborn into the fellowship of Christ’s Body may demonstrate in our lives what we profess by our faith; through Jesus Christ our Lord; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
__________

“Revelation Song” – Kari Jobe

__________

A Reading from the Letters: Revelation 1:9-19 (NLT)

Vision of the Son of Man

I, John, am your brother and your partner in suffering and in God’s Kingdom and in the patient endurance to which Jesus calls us. I was exiled to the island of Patmos for preaching the word of God and for my testimony about Jesus. It was the Lord’s Day, and I was worshiping in the Spirit. Suddenly, I heard behind me a loud voice like a trumpet blast. It said, “Write in a book everything you see, and send it to the seven churches in the cities of Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.”

When I turned to see who was speaking to me, I saw seven gold lampstands. And standing in the middle of the lampstands was someone like the Son of Man. He was wearing a long robe with a gold sash across his chest. His head and his hair were white like wool, as white as snow. And his eyes were like flames of fire. His feet were like polished bronze refined in a furnace, and his voice thundered like mighty ocean waves. He held seven stars in his right hand, and a sharp two-edged sword came from his mouth. And his face was like the sun in all its brilliance.

When I saw him, I fell at his feet as if I were dead. But he laid his right hand on me and said, “Don’t be afraid! I am the First and the Last. I am the living one. I died, but look—I am alive forever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and the grave.

“Write down what you have seen—both the things that are now happening and the things that will happen….”
__________

A Reading from the Gospels: John 20:19-31 (NLT)

Jesus Appears to His Disciples

That Sunday evening the disciples were meeting behind locked doors because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Suddenly, Jesus was standing there among them! “Peace be with you,” he said. As he spoke, he showed them the wounds in his hands and his side. They were filled with joy when they saw the Lord! Again he said, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.” Then he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive anyone’s sins, they are forgiven. If you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”

Jesus Appears to Thomas

One of the twelve disciples, Thomas (nicknamed the Twin), was not with the others when Jesus came. They told him, “We have seen the Lord!”

But he replied, “I won’t believe it unless I see the nail wounds in his hands, put my fingers into them, and place my hand into the wound in his side.”

Eight days later the disciples were together again, and this time Thomas was with them. The doors were locked; but suddenly, as before, Jesus was standing among them. “Peace be with you,” he said. Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and look at my hands. Put your hand into the wound in my side. Don’t be faithless any longer. Believe!”

“My Lord and my God!” Thomas exclaimed.

Then Jesus told him, “You believe because you have seen me. Blessed are those who believe without seeing me.”

Purpose of the Book

The disciples saw Jesus do many other miraculous signs in addition to the ones recorded in this book. But these are written so that you may continue to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing in him you will have life by the power of his name.
__________

Intercession:

God our strength and our life: You give hope to the hopeless and help to the helpless, through the resurrection of your Son, Jesus Christ. Hear us as we pray –

+ That your people may grow in unity of faith, hope, and love….
+ That leaders of your people may rely on you for wisdom and sound judgement….
+ That all believers may have life to the full, through the power of Jesus….
+ That doubters may be persuaded by the strong faith of believers….
+ That any divisions among us may be overcome….
+ That those in need may experience friendship and practical care….
+ That believers suffering persecution may be protected and delivered from evil….

God our strength, the resurrection of Jesus renews our hope: hear our prayers and help us, we ask, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
__________

“Not Afraid” – Jesus Culture

__________

Benediction: Revelation 1:5-6

To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood and made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.

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

Friday Morning: 08 Mar 2019 – John 20:24-21:14 ~ the blessing of believing without seeing

Friday Morning

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

Opening (Collect for Purity)

Almighty God: to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hid; cleanse the thoughts of my heart through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, that I may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy name, through Christ my Lord. Amen.
__________

Morning Reading – John 20:24-21:14 (NLT)

Jesus Appears to Thomas

One of the twelve disciples, Thomas (nicknamed the Twin), was not with the others when Jesus came. They told him, “We have seen the Lord!”

But he replied, “I won’t believe it unless I see the nail wounds in his hands, put my fingers into them, and place my hand into the wound in his side.”

Eight days later the disciples were together again, and this time Thomas was with them. The doors were locked; but suddenly, as before, Jesus was standing among them. “Peace be with you,” he said. Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and look at my hands. Put your hand into the wound in my side. Don’t be faithless any longer. Believe!”

“My Lord and my God!” Thomas exclaimed.

Then Jesus told him, “You believe because you have seen me. Blessed are those who believe without seeing me.”

Purpose of the Book

The disciples saw Jesus do many other miraculous signs in addition to the ones recorded in this book. But these are written so that you may continue to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing in him you will have life by the power of his name.

Epilogue: Jesus Appears to Seven Disciples

Later, Jesus appeared again to the disciples beside the Sea of Galilee. This is how it happened. Several of the disciples were there—Simon Peter, Thomas (nicknamed the Twin), Nathanael from Cana in Galilee, the sons of Zebedee, and two other disciples.

Simon Peter said, “I’m going fishing.”

“We’ll come, too,” they all said. So they went out in the boat, but they caught nothing all night.

At dawn Jesus was standing on the beach, but the disciples couldn’t see who he was. He called out, “Fellows, have you caught any fish?”

“No,” they replied.

Then he said, “Throw out your net on the right-hand side of the boat, and you’ll get some!” So they did, and they couldn’t haul in the net because there were so many fish in it.

Then the disciple Jesus loved said to Peter, “It’s the Lord!” When Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put on his tunic (for he had stripped for work), jumped into the water, and headed to shore. The others stayed with the boat and pulled the loaded net to the shore, for they were only about a hundred yards from shore. When they got there, they found breakfast waiting for them—fish cooking over a charcoal fire, and some bread.

“Bring some of the fish you’ve just caught,” Jesus said. So Simon Peter went aboard and dragged the net to the shore. There were 153 large fish, and yet the net hadn’t torn.

“Now come and have some breakfast!” Jesus said. None of the disciples dared to ask him, “Who are you?” They knew it was the Lord. Then Jesus served them the bread and the fish. This was the third time Jesus had appeared to his disciples since he had been raised from the dead.
__________

Morning Reflection:

Why have we been reading through John’s Gospel? What’s his purpose in writing? And what’s our purpose in reading?

These are written so that you may continue to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing in him you will have life by the power of his name. – John 20:30-31

John’s purpose is that we may “continue to believe,”  and with that end in mind he recorded many of the miraculous signs wrought by Jesus. Let’s review a few of them:

+ Signs declaring his Divinity – e.g. “Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, before Abraham was even born, I am!” (distinguishing himself from prophets and apostles). John 8:58

+ Signs of impressive majesty – e.g. “This miraculous sign at Cana in Galilee was the first time Jesus revealed his glory.” (turning water into wine) John 2:11

+ Signs showing compassion– e.g. “Where have you put him?” he asked them. They told him, “Lord, come and see.” Then Jesus wept. The people who were standing nearby said, “See how much he loved him!” (the raising of Lazarus) John 11:34-36

+ Signs illustrating an important truth – e.g. Jesus made a whip from some ropes and chased [the merchants and money changers] out of the Temple. (his holiness, death and resurrection) – John 2:14-16; 2:21-22

+ Signs showing the necessity of faith – e.g. Jesus told him, “Go back home. Your son will live!” And the man believed what Jesus said and started home. (healing the government official’s son) John 4:46-54

+ Signs symbolizing something higher – e.g. Then [Jesus] said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and look at my hands. Put your hand into the wound in my side. Don’t be faithless any longer. Believe!” (his resurrection as proof of our resurrection) John 20:27

Questions for consideration:

  • What’s your purpose for reading John’s Gospel? For information, or transformation, or both? Please explain.
  • What have your learned from reading John’s Gospel? Please explain.
  • What has changed in your life from reading John’s Gospel? Please explain.

Then Jesus told Thomas, “You believe because you have seen me. Blessed are those who believe without seeing me.” John 20:29

  • Has your life been blessed by believing in Jesus? If so, how? Please explain.

__________

Morning Prayer:

Heavenly Father: Thank you for sending us your Son, Jesus Christ, that we might live full, satisfying lives now and forever. And thank you for sending us your Spirit to lead us into all truth. Strengthen us in faith, hope and love – whether or not we see miraculous signs in our lifetime. For we confess, with Thomas, that Jesus is our Lord and our God! All to the glory of your Name. Amen.
__________

“I Believe in You” – Nathaniel Bassey

__________

Closing:

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

2nd Sunday of Easter – 08 Apr – John 20:19-31 ~ sent with the Good News of life

The Second Sunday of Easter

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

Opening Prayer

God of life, source of all faith, through the waters of baptism you have raised us up in Jesus and given us life that endures. Day by day refine our faith, that we who have not seen the Christ may truly confess him as our Lord and God and share the blessedness of those who believe. Grant this through Jesus Christ, the resurrection and the life, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God for ever and ever. Amen.
__________

“Come Behold The Wondrous Mystery” – Matt Papa


__________

Gospel Reading: John 20:19-31 (NLT)

That Sunday evening the disciples were meeting behind locked doors because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Suddenly, Jesus was standing there among them! “Peace be with you,” he said. As he spoke, he showed them the wounds in his hands and his side. They were filled with joy when they saw the Lord! Again he said, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.” Then he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive anyone’s sins, they are forgiven. If you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”

One of the twelve disciples, Thomas (nicknamed the Twin), was not with the others when Jesus came. They told him, “We have seen the Lord!”

But he replied, “I won’t believe it unless I see the nail wounds in his hands, put my fingers into them, and place my hand into the wound in his side.”

Eight days later the disciples were together again, and this time Thomas was with them. The doors were locked; but suddenly, as before, Jesus was standing among them. “Peace be with you,” he said. Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and look at my hands. Put your hand into the wound in my side. Don’t be faithless any longer. Believe!”

“My Lord and my God!” Thomas exclaimed.

Then Jesus told him, “You believe because you have seen me. Blessed are those who believe without seeing me.”

The disciples saw Jesus do many other miraculous signs in addition to the ones recorded in this book. But these are written so that you may continue to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing in him you will have life by the power of his name.
__________

Prayers of Intercession:

God of endless love, we give you our thanks and present our petitions before your throne of grace –

+ That believers everywhere may set aside our differences and be one in you…. Lord, hear us.
+ That church leaders everywhere may lead the way in unity, grace and peace…. Lord, hear us.
+ That believers everywhere may live full lives through the power of Jesus…. Lord, hear us.
+ That those who doubt may be convinced by the love and unity of believers…. Lord, hear us.
+ That all divisions within and without our faith communities may be overcome…. Lord, hear us.
+ That those who are destitute may experience our friendship and practical care…. Lord, hear us.
+ That those who have died in Christ may share his glorious victory over death…. Lord, hear us.

God our strength, the resurrection of Jesus renews our hope: consider our petitions and help us, we ask through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
__________

“I Will Rise” -Chris Tomlin


__________

Blessing

May the God who has redeemed you and made you adopted children through the resurrection of his only Son bless you and fill you with joy; and may he lead you to your home in heaven.
__________

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