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Thomas F. Fischer, M.Div., M.S.A., Editor


Thirteenth Sunday After Pentecost
Series B

Option #1: "Life's Menu"
Selected Bible Verses
Rev. Wayne Dobratz, B.S., M.Div.

I. WHAT TO REJECT

A. Spiritual junk food--"simple," as in Prov 9:4 (poorly fed)

B. That which leads to a loss of self control--Eph 5:17-18; the word methusko, i.e., "to be drunk," gives the English word "methane"--a gas that can kill

C. Drinking songs as opposed to spiritual songs--Eph 5:19-20

II. WHAT TO SELECT

A. Spiritual food that leads to understanding--Prov 9:4-6

B. Spiritually filling food--moved or motivated by the Spirit, Eph 5:18

C. The living bread which comes down from heaven, John 6:51-58

As God fed his people in the desert with manna, so the rabbis were expecting the Messiah to perform similar wonders; see below. While Jesus fed thousands twice (Matt 16:9-10), His primary mission was providing spiritual food, as He tells us in John 6:51-58, the Gospel appointed for this day.

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia: Spiritual food: nourishment for the soul, referring specifically (1 Cor 10:3) to the manna by which the children of Israel were miraculously fed... Hence, (1) Christ Himself as the food of the soul: "I am the bread of life" (Jn 6:48-58); (2) anything that nourishes the spiritual life: (a) obedience to the will of God: "My meat is to do the will of him that sent me" (Jn 4:32-34); (b) the truths of God in the Scriptures: "Word of righteousness" = "strong meat" (Heb 5:12-14); "word of God" (Mt 4:4); (c) the things of the Spirit (1 Cor 3:1-2; compare 1 Cor 2).

Matthew Henry’s Commentary on the New Testament: Christ, having thus spoken of himself as the bread of life, and of faith as the work of God, comes more particularly to show what of himself is this bread, namely, his flesh, and that to believe is to eat of that, vv51-58, where he still uses the metaphor of food. Observe here the preparation of this food: The bread that I will give is my flesh (v51), the flesh of the Son of man and his blood, v53. His flesh is meat indeed, and his blood is drink indeed, v55. Observe also the participation of this food: We must eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood (v53); and again (v54), Whoso eateth my flesh and drinketh my blood; and the same words (vv56-57), he that eateth me. This is certainly a parable or figurative discourse, wherein the actings of the soul upon things spiritual and divine are represented by bodily actions...

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Children's Message: John 6:51-58

Some of you live out in the country. I remember the cats that stayed outside. It was always fun to see where the mother cat had hidden her kittens. If you watched closely enough, you would see her carry the kittens by the nape of the neck to a new hiding place. The mother cat wanted to raise her kittens in a safe place.

You’ve probably seen a mother cat give her kittens their supper. Well, the way the mother cat feeds her kittens is the way that Jesus feeds us in His Word. Peter wrote in his first letter: Like newborn babies, crave the pure milk of the Word, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good. (1 Peter 2:2)

Now listen carefully: of all the kittens I ever saw grow up, none of them ate only once and then grew up to be big and strong. Mother cat had to feed the kittens for a few months before they were grow strong enough to eat other food. In today’s Gospel, Jesus tells us that we eat what he has to feed us by believing in him. He said: Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him. Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me. We grow in our faith as Jesus feeds us, gives us of himself in his Word. If you don’t eat what he has to give, you stop growing. He says that we must have him inside of us if we wish to have eternal life.

When the mother cat no longer needs to feed her kittens, some of her will always be with her children, no matter how far away they roam. Like the mother cat, Jesus is always there to feed you. Just never think that you will ever stop needing the food he gives you. Be fed by him and be strong in your faith. The food supply will never run out, and in heaven he will feed us forever. Now that’s something to look forward to!

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Option #2: "Wisdom Personified!"
Ephesians 5:15-20
Rev. Kelly Bedard, B.A., M.Div.
 
Point: In Christ alone are we truly wise.
 
Problem: Yet often we tend to succumb to the temptation to drfit toward unwise living--e.g., time-wise, thought-wise, draught-wise, praise-wise.
 
Promise: Because God willed Jesus to die and thus obtain forgiveness for us, the Spirit empowers us to wise and thankful living that in turn makes others wise and thankful.
 
1. Paul isn’t telling us to make the most of every moment, even though that is good advice. He tells us to seize opportunity for the glory of Jesus. It isn’t to make the most of time, but to make the most of the time [for God]. (David Guzik) 
 
2. ...why it is important to walk wisely. Jesus spoke of a time when many false prophets will rise up and deceive many. And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold (Matthew 24:11-12). Surely we are in those times, because the days are evil. (David Guzik)
 
3.The ancient Greek grammar for be filled also indicates two other important things. First, the verb is passive, so this is not a manufactured experience. Second, it is imperative, so this is not an optional experience. (David Guzik)
 
4. Luther maintains that the will of God is "When God breaks and hinders every evil counsel and will which would not let us hallow the name of God nor let His kingdom come, such as the will of the devil, the world, and our flesh; but strengthens and keeps us steadfast in His Word and in faith unto our end. This is His gracious and good will." (Small Catechism) 

 

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This page was revised on: Monday, November 13, 2006 01:00:34 PM