Sunday of the Fulfilment

 

Watchword for the Sunday of Fulfilment is from Luke 12:35: Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning…

God’s holy Word from the prophet Isaiah 65:17-19.23-25 “Behold, I will create new heavens and a new earth. The former things will not be remembered, nor will they come to mind. But be glad and rejoice forever in what I will create, for I will create Jerusalem to be a delight and its people a joy. I will rejoice over Jerusalem and take delight in my people; the sound of weeping and of crying will be heard in it no more. They will not toil in vain or bear children doomed to misfortune; for they will be a people blessed by the LORD, they and their descendants with them…  Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear.  The wolf and the lamb will feed together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox, but dust will be the serpent’s food. They will neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain,” says the LORD.

The epistle from Revelation 21:1-7  Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea.  I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”  He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life. He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be my son.”

The holy Gospel according to the evangelist St. Matthew 25:1-13  “At that time the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish and five were wise.  The foolish ones took their lamps but did not take any oil with them. The wise, however, took oil in jars along with their lamps. The bridegroom was a long time in coming, and they all became drowsy and fell asleep.  “At midnight the cry rang out: ‘Here’s the bridegroom! Come out to meet him!’ “Then all the virgins woke up and trimmed their lamps. The foolish ones said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil; our lamps are going out.’  “‘No,’ they replied, ‘there may not be enough for both us and you. Instead, go to those who sell oil and buy some for yourselves.’  “But while they were on their way to buy the oil, the bridegroom arrived. The virgins who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet. And the door was shut.  “Later the others also came. ‘Sir! Sir!’ they said. ‘Open the door for us!’  “But he replied, ‘I tell you the truth, I don’t know you.’  “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know the day or the hour.”

Prayer of the Church for the Sunday of the Fulfilment

O Almighty God, merciful Father, in this present life of sin and suffering, Your holy Church longs for the return of Christ and for the fulfillment of all things in Him. Give us grace to make a good confession, to stand firm in the faith, and to be ever watchful for His coming in power and glory.

Bestow strength and steadfastness on the pastors, evangelists, teachers and missionaries of Your Church, that in these gray and latter days Your little flock, O Lord, may not be abandoned, but nurtured and built up in You so that we may declare the praises of Him who has called us out of darkness into His marvelous light.

O King of glory, Lord of hosts, in humility Your only-begotten Son stood before governors and kings and was accused unjustly for our sake. Defend the cause of the weak and those who have no voice in our society, particularly the unborn, the poor, and the homeless. Give the government of our nation and our leaders the fortitude to strive for fairness and justice in our land.

O God, with all creation we look in eager expectation for our final redemption, the revelation of Your Son, and the joys of Your heavenly kingdom. Until that time, look in mercy on all who live under the cross. Give patience and hope to the hopeless. Give healing and help to the sick in body, mind, or spirit. Draw near to the dying, hold them in the arms of Your love, and defend them against the final assaults of the evil one. Comfort those who mourn  with the hope of the resurrection of the body to eternal life. Give us faith to see in our crosses that You work all things for our good and that nothing in this world can separate us from Your love that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Gracious Father, in the Supper of Your Son You give us a foretaste of the feast of heaven. May all who approach Your Table this day be worthy and well prepared. Give us the food of our Lord’s body and blood, that we may be sustained on our journey through this troubled life until the veil of this present age is lifted and we see You face to face.

We give You most hearty thanks, O Lord, for all the mercies You have shown Your saints on their pilgrimage in this life and who now enjoy the splendor of Your glory. Keep us faithful to the end that one day we may with them come to the fullness of Your heavenly kingdom; where You, O Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, live and reign ever one God, world without end. Amen.

 

About Wilhelm Weber jr

Rector of the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Tshwane
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