“Striking the Servant” Sermon for October 1, 2017





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Published on Oct 2, 2017

Rev. Charles Svendsen
Scripture: Exodus 17:1-7; Philippians 2:1-13

Pastor Charles' Warmup:
This Sunday, October 1, is World Communion Sunday. Christians around the globe are celebrating together this sacred Lord's
Supper. On this 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time the lectionary takes us to two extraordinary texts: Exodus 17:1-7 and Philippians 2:1-13. In the Exodus lesson the children of Israel find themselves in the wilderness complaining to Moses about the scarcity of water. Moses believed that his life was so threatened that he went to God for help. "What shall I do with these people? They are almost ready to stone me." Like an old Western film cliffhanger, we'll hear the rest of the story on Sunday. The Philippians lesson takes us to the picture of Christ Jesus as the servant who, as the hymn writer Charles Wesley wrote, "emptied himself of all but love." We will be reminded that our example of servanthood is that of our Lord. So we look forward to breaking together the bread of life and drinking together the cup of salvation. And we do so with believers in every land. Come to worship at 9:30 am (traditional) and at 11:15 am (contemporary). See you in church.

Charles Svendsen
Interim Pastor

Exodus 17:1-7
From the wilderness of Sin the whole congregation of the Israelites journeyed by stages, as the Lord commanded. They camped at Rephidim, but there was no water for the people to drink. The people quarreled with Moses, and said, “Give us water to drink.” Moses said to them, “Why do you quarrel with me? Why do you test the Lord?” But the people thirsted there for water; and the people complained against Moses and said, “Why did you bring us out of Egypt, to kill us and our children and livestock with thirst?” So Moses cried out to the Lord, “What shall I do with this people? They are almost ready to stone me.” The Lord said to Moses, “Go on ahead of the people, and take some of the elders of Israel with you; take in your hand the staff with which you struck the Nile, and go. I will be standing there in front of you on the rock at Horeb. Strike the rock, and water will come out of it, so that the people may drink.” Moses did so, in the sight of the elders of Israel. He called the place Massah and Meribah, because the Israelites quarreled and tested the Lord, saying, “Is the Lord among us or not?”

Philippians 2:1-13
If then there is any encouragement in Christ, any consolation from love, any sharing in the Spirit, any compassion and sympathy, make my joy complete: be of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility regard others as better than yourselves. Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others. Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited, but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness. And being found in human form, he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death— even death on a cross. Therefore God also highly exalted him and gave him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Therefore, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed me, not only in my presence, but much more now in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you, enabling you both to will and to work for his good pleasure.

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