Time in the Word

A Study of Pentecost 17

Theme for the Week:  God's Forgiveness

Exodus 32:7-14 - God forgives through a mediator

1 Timothy 1:12-17 - God through Christ shows mercy to repentant sinners

Luke 15:1-10 - God rejoices when sinners repent

Psalm for the week: Psalm 51:1-17

Hymn for the week: My Hope is Built On Nothing Less

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Monday, September 24, 2001

Forgiveness is the theme running through the lessons for the coming week. God's attitude toward sinners is shown in Jesus' association with sinners in His joy when sinners repent. If God did not forgive sinners would be destroyed by God's wrath. In the Old Testament lesson Moses intercedes for his people who are guilty of idolatry and convinces God not to wipe out His people. This means that God forgives and accepts them as His own people. Paul the Epistle lesson tells of the mercy of forgiveness he received by his faith in Christ even though he called himself the chief among sinners.

Tuesday September 25, 2001    Exodus 32:7-14

Moses succeeds in persuading God not to destroy the Israelites for their sin. We do not get right with God on our own efforts or prayers. We dl not buy God's mercy by repenting and saying we are sorry. In the case of the Israelites there is no indication they repented or begged for mercy. They did not cry, "O my sin, my sin!" It was Moses' intercession that turned away God's wrath. He was their mediator. Christians see a greater than Moses who intercedes for them. We are forgiven for Jesus' sake. This should lead us to the cross of Christ for refuge and help.

Wednesday September 26, 2001    1 Timothy 1:12-17

Paul witnesses to God's mercy in forgiving him as chief of sinners.  Here is a statement that everyone should accept. It sums up the whole mission and nature of Christ. We usually avoid general statements because investigation often shows that there are exceptions. Here there are no exceptions. This statement is most certainly true and should be accepted as the truth.

Thursday, September 27, 2001    Luke 15:1-10

The parable of the lost sheep and coin. Twice the Gospel for this week tells us of the joy in heaven when a sinner repents. The angels sing each time a sinner repents. Evangelism is the happy time of the church because it is an echo of what goes on in heaven. Oh, what joy there is when even one sinner turns from his sin to repent. 

Friday, September 28, 2001   Psalm 51:1-17

This Psalm was written after the prophet Nathan came to David and confronted him when David had committed adultery with Bathsheba. David turned the Lord in repentance and was forgiven his sin. We are called to come humbly before our Lord, confessing our sin to receive forgiveness and the hope of reconciliation.

Saturday, September 29, 2001  - 1 Timothy 1:1

In opening his letter to Timothy Paul speaks of the hope that we have in Christ. Our hope is based upon Christ and His perfect righteousness. Upon this righteousness we receive forgiveness and mercy. Come to Christ often, for in Him there is forgiveness and life eternal.

The Prayer for Pentecost 17 O God, without whose blessing we are not able to please You, mercifully grant that Your Holy Spirit may in all things direct and govern our hearts; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and rules with You and the Holy Spirit, One God, now and forever. Amen.

Sources:

Lutheran Worship Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis, MO. 1982 p. 139

Lectionary Preaching Workbook Series B John R. Brokhoff C.S.S. Publishing Co. Lima, OH. 1979 p.193