Welcome to Living Savior Lutheran Church
Living Savior church is now having regular worship services at 9:00a.m. every Sunday. We will be practicing social distancing. Masks are required. Communion will be given at the end of the service. Offering plates will not be passed, but will be located at the entrance and at the exit. For those of you who are not comfortable with this arrangement, we also are offering a parking lot service at the same time. tune in to 105.7. We are now sharing the service on facebook live also.
Our Wednesday night Lenten Services are at 6:30p.m.
Scriptures & Message for The Second Sunday in Lent–February 28th, 2021
First Reading – Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16
When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the LORD appeared to him and said, “I am God Almighty; walk before Me faithfully and be blameless. Then I will make My covenant between Me and you and will greatly increase your numbers.” Abram fell facedown, and God said to him, “As for Me, this is My covenant with you: You will be the father of many nations. No longer will you be called Abram; your name will be Abraham, for I have made you a father of many nations. I will make you very fruitful; I will make nations of you, and kings will come from you. I will establish my covenant as an everlasting covenant between Me and you and your descendants after you for the generations to come, to be your God and the God of your descendants after you.
God also said to Abraham, “As for Sarai your wife, you are no longer to call her Sarai; her name will be Sarah. I will bless her and will surely give you a son by her. I will bless her so that she will be the mother of nations; kings of peoples will come from her.”
Second Reading – Romans 5:1-11
Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, Who has been given to us.
You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates Hs own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Since we have now been justified by His blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through Him! For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to Him through the death of His Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through His life! Not only is this so, but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.
Gospel – Mark 8:27-38
Jesus and his disciples went on to the villages around Caesarea Philippi. On the way He asked them, “Who do people say I am?”
They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, one of the prophets.”
“But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”
Peter answered, “You are the Messiah.”
Jesus warned them not to tell anyone about Him.
He then began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that He must be killed and after three days rise again. He spoke plainly about this, and Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him.
But when Jesus turned and looked at His disciples, He rebuked Peter. “Get behind Me, Satan!” He said. “You do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns.”
Then He called the crowd to Him along with His disciples and said: “Whoever wants to be My disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow Me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for Me and for the gospel will save it. What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul? If anyone is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when He comes in His Father’s glory with the holy angels.”
What’ll You Have?
A woman went into a restaurant and ordered the breakfast special, “I want my pancakes well done,” she said. “You need to cook them all the way through and golden brown on both sides. Use the light syrup because the regular syrup is too sweet. Make the bacon crisp and thin, not oily or soggy and put it on a separate plate. The eggs must be over-easy, not broken or runny.”
“And would you like butter or margarine?” asked the waitress.
The woman answered, “Oh, it doesn’t matter; I’m not that picky.”
Have you ever noticed that’s there’s really only two kinds of restaurants in the world? There are those places which offer an all you can eat buffet.
Then there are those restaurants a waiter or waitress comes over and asks, “What’ll you have?”
In fancier restaurants they’re more polite but it’s all the same question, “What’ll you have?”
In today’s Scripture lesson we’re given a menu of sorts. We’re given a menu and then we’re to make a choice. Let’s look at the passage.
Today as we examine the menu of answers and choices about Jesus, we need to have open eyes as we make that choice. And we need to examine the passage through three questions:
- Who Am I?
Remember the old game, “Who Am I” or twenty questions, where you had to guess identity of a historical or fictional person based on the “yes” or “no” answers to questions you asked. There used to be a couple of TV game shows like that. “To Tell The Truth” where three people would enter and all solemnly say, “My name is Joe Schmoe.” Then the host reads about his/her life. Then the questions would begin and at the end, the panel would have to guess.
Today’s passage has always reminded me of those game shows. As they are traveling from village to village proclaiming the Good News and healing those in need, one day Jesus stops, turns to the disciples and asks, “WHO AM I?” Actually he says: “Who do people say that I am?”
You remember the answers. It sounded like a menu of choices.
Scripture doesn’t say who spoke first. It doesn’t really matter but I think it was probably Simon the Zealot, he said: “Well, some of them say your John the Baptist reborn and carrying on his ministry.”
That’s when Thaddaeus popped up and said, “Others say you’re Elijah, the one who is supposed to tell us when the Messiah is coming.”
And then Judas Iscariot said, “Still others think you’re just one of the prophets.”
Then it got silent. It was a nervous silence because each of them had their own understanding of who Jesus was buried deep in their hearts and minds.
Just when the silence was getting painfully uncomfortable, Jesus asked another question. “But who do you say that I am?”
The question jumped in and pummeled their nervousness unmercifully. That was when brash, bold Peter stepped out on faith again. Like walking on the water with Jesus, he spoke out and said, “You are the Messiah.”
The question is still pertinent today because people are still asking that very same question about Jesus. “Who do people say that I am?” “WHO AM I?”
- Who Is He?
It’s a question we have to answer as well. It’s fine and dandy to list the menu of options but at some point we have to answer the question for ourselves: “But who do you say that I am?” Or “WHO IS HE.” And how we answer will determine our relationship with God and how we live our lives.
If we say he’s John the Baptist returned then we can write him off as some weirdly dressed kook.
If we say he is just one of the prophets, then his words do have SOME authority because we know that prophets are from God.
If we say he is Elijah, well then there is some very real authority in his message.
So you see, the choice is ours but it affects everything we do. That’s why Jesus asked: “But who do you say that I am?” And why we ask ourselves: “WHO IS HE.”
When we answer the question “WHO IS HE” like Peter it determines who we are.
III. Who Are You?
And that leads right into the final point. WHO ARE YOU? Who WE say Jesus is makes a difference in our lives and in our actions.
A funeral home in one city placed a larger than life nativity scene on their front lawn each Christmas. The scene is complete with sheep, goats, and three huge camels. Several years ago a young father and his two daughters stopped at the funeral home to take a closer look at the figures. The father talked about the animals as they walked around looking at the figures. Finally, one of his daughters asked, “Who is that baby, Daddy?”
Her father replied, “Oh, that’s Jesus.”
His daughters continued to stare into the manger at the face of the baby. “Who is Jesus, Daddy?” The father struggled with that question, never really able to answer the question. They loaded back up and headed for home. During the next few days he struggled over and over with that question, “Who is Jesus, Daddy?”
The following Sunday he insisted that everyone attend church, they were going to find out about this Jesus. After the service they made an appointment with the pastor. He went to their home and shared with them the story and belief about Jesus as Savior and Lord.
As a result of that meeting in their home, both parents and children started attending Sunday School. Later they joined the church and became one of the strongest and most joyful families in the church It all started with something as simple as a manger scene in front of a funeral home, and a child’s question.
How we answer that question makes all the difference in the world and in our lives.
I read a story about a waitress who couldn’t get a smile out of one of her customers for love nor money. The old woman was dour, depressed and dejected all through dinner. And the food really wasn’t all that bad. As the lady paid her bill and was leaving, the waitress said, “Have a nice day!” And the woman responded, “I’m sorry, but I’ve made other plans!”
What are your plans? How will you answer the questions raised by Jesus? Today and every day, you’re given the menu and asked to make a choice. How you answer is extremely important.
“So, What’ll You Have?”
we will try to keep you updated as we go along during this time of Covid 19.