The Sunday of Christ, the Stronger One (03/15)

Within the liturgy for each Lord’s day, we receive the Word of God through uniquely appointed readings, psalms, hymns, and prayers. This week we will pray the Divine Service Setting Three (audio of this liturgy). The following guide will help you to prepare to hear and sing the Propers, i.e. the varied texts and hymns for this week.

JESUS OVERCOMES THE STRONG MAN

Jeremiah was charged with speaking evil when he spoke the Word of the Lord (Jer. 26:1–15). So also, Jesus is accused of doing evil when in fact He is doing good. He casts out a demon from a mute man so that he is able to speak (Luke 11:14–28). But some said Jesus did this by the power of Beelzebub, Satan. Like Pharaoh of old, their hearts were hard (Ex. 8:16–24). They did not recognize the finger of God, the power of the Holy Spirit at work in and through Jesus. Jesus is the Stronger Man who overcomes the strong man. He takes the devil’s armor of sin and death and destroys it from the inside out by the holy cross. He exorcizes and frees us by water and the Word. We were once darkness, but now we are light in Christ the Lord (Eph. 5:1–9). As children of light, our tongues are loosed to give thanks to Him who saved us. In a world where demons roam we confess, “My eyes are ever toward the Lord, for He shall pluck my feet out of the net.” (Introit)

Collect of the Day: O God, whose glory it is always to have mercy, be gracious to all who have gone astray from Your ways and bring them again with penitent hearts and steadfast faith to embrace and hold fast the unchangeable truth of Your Word; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

Readings:

Introit: Ps. 25:1-2, 17-18, 20; antiphon: Ps. 25:15-16
Gradual: Ps. 9:19, 3
Old Testament: Ex. 8:16-24 or Jer. 26:1-15
Psalm 136:1-16 (antiphon: v. 26) or Psalm 4 (antiphon: v. 8)
Epistle: Eph. 5:1-9
Tract: Ps. 123:1-3a
Gospel: Luke 11:14-28

Hymns:

614 As surely as I live, God said St. Luke

659 Lord of our life and God of our salvation Iste confessor

594 God’s own child, I gladly say it Bachofen Hymn Study

533 Jesus has come and brings pleasure eternal Jesus ist kommen, Grund ewiger Freude