Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost

Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost

Created, saved and gifted by god, we seek, serve and share Jesus Christ.

Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost
October 3, 2021 – 10:30 am

Good Shepherd Lutheran Church
901 East Stroop Road
Kettering, OH 45429-4688
(937) 298-0136


Today’s gospel combines a saying that makes many of us uncomfortable with a story we find comforting. Jesus’ saying on divorce is another of his rejections of human legislation in favor of the original intent of God’s law. Jesus’ rebuke of the disciples who are fending off the children should challenge us as well. What does it mean to receive the kingdom of God as a child does?
Softening Hearts
At first, the two episodes in today’s gospel may seem disjointed: a challenging, even unsettling passage about divorce is followed by a much-loved image of Jesus telling his disciples to let little children come to him. Yet in both passages, Jesus puts rules and conventions aside to challenge his followers’ hearts to greater openness and vulnerability.
When legal experts attempt to reduce the challenges of divorce to legal minutiae, Jesus re- frames their questions in the context of our created need for human relationship. In a broken world, opening our hearts to others can bring some of our deepest pain, but if we don’t take that risk, we can lose out on the human love and companionship for which God created us. These verses should never be used to judge those who have gone through the heartache of divorce, but rather as a caution for all of us against letting the pain of relationships harden our hearts to the care we were created to both give and receive.
Similarly, in the second passage, Jesus praises the openness of children’s hearts to God’s kingdom when the disciples attempt to shoo them away. As adults, we have accumulated a lot of knowledge about how the world works. Yet this confidence in what we know can also harden our hearts against perceiving a God who moves in mysterious ways and challenges our fixed ideas of how things are. Once again, Jesus calls us to risk our hearts with humility and openness to being taught the ways of God’s kingdom by those we thought needed us to teach them.
Through the rhythms of worship and the cadence of liturgy, in the vibrations of music and the gifts of bread and wine, we invite one another to relax our hearts, drop our defenses, and leave behind what we thought we knew. Here, the Spirit of God comes to open our hearts, to heal our pain, and to draw us ever more deeply into relationship with God and one another.



The Holy Spirit calls us together as the people of God.



All may make the sign of the cross, the sign marked at baptism, as the presiding minister begins.

Blessed be the holy Trinity, one God, whose teaching is life, whose presence is sure, and whose love is endless.

Let us confess our sins to the one who welcomes us with an open heart.

Silence is kept for reflection.

God our comforter:
like lost sheep, we have gone astray. We gaze upon abundance and see scarcity. We turn our faces away from injustice and oppression. We exploit the earth with our apathy and greed. Free us from our sin, gracious God. Listen when we call out to you for help. Lead us by your love to love our neighbors as ourselves. Amen.

All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. By the gift of grace in Christ Jesus, God makes you righteous. Receive with glad hearts the forgiveness of all your sins.

GATHERING HYMN – “Let the Whole Creation Cry”

Let the whole creation cry,
“Glory to the Lord on high!”
Heav’n and earth, awake and sing,
“Praise to our almighty king!”
Praise God, angel hosts above,
ever bright and fair in love;
sun and moon, lift up your voice;
night and stars, in God rejoice.

Servants striving for the Lord,
prophets burning with the word,
those to whom the arts belong
add their voices to the song.
Pow’rs of knowledge and of law,
to the glorious circle draw;
all who work and all who wait,
sing, “The Lord is good and great!”

Men and women, young and old,
raise the anthem loud and bold,
and let children’s happy hearts
in this worship take their parts;
from the north to southern pole
let the mighty chorus roll:
“Holy, Holy, Holy One;
glory be to God alone!”


The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all.
And also with you.


Kyrie eleison, Lord, have mercy.
Christe eleison, Christ have mercy.
Kyrie eleison, Lord have mercy.


Glory to you, God, for yours is the earth;
yours is the promise, the blessing, the birth.
Ours the rejoicing for Word given frame;
ours the thanksgiving to your holy name.
Ours be the telling of deeds greatly done;
yours be the glory, O God, yours alone.

Glory to you, God, for yours is the earth;
yours the hosannas, the dying, rebirth.
Ours the rejoicing for nature reclaimed;
ours the thanksgiving to your holy name.
Ours be the telling of deeds greatly done;
yours be the glory, O God, yours alone.

Glory to you, God, for yours is the earth;
yours the annointing, the radiant worth.
Ours the rejoicing for spirits aflame;
ours the thanksgiving to your holy name.
Ours be the telling of deeds greatly done;
yours be the glory, O God, yours alone.


Sovereign God,
you have created us to live in loving community with one another. Form us for life that is faithful and steadfast, and teach us to trust like little children, that we may reflect the image of your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. Amen.


God speaks to us in scripture reading, preaching, and song.

FIRST READING Genesis 2:18-24

Genesis 2 stresses that people are not meant to live in isolation but in relationship. Out of love for humanity, God creates them male and female, to provide companionship for each other and to become with each other “one flesh.” The Hebrew words used here are ish (man) and ishshah (woman).

A reading from the book of Genesis.
The LORD God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper as his partner.” So out of the ground the LORD God formed every animal of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them; and whatever the man called every living creature, that was its name. The man gave names to all cattle, and to the birds of the air, and to every animal of the field; but for the man there was not found a helper as his partner. So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and he slept; then he took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh. And the rib that the LORD God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man. Then the man said,
“This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; this one shall be called Woman, for out of Man this one was taken.”
Therefore a man leaves his father and his mother and clings to his wife, and they become one flesh.

Word of God, word of life.
Thanks be to God.

SECOND READING Hebrews 1:1-4; 2:5-12

Quoting from the psalms, this passage from Hebrews emphasizes that Jesus, the one through whom God created everything and who sits at God’s right hand, is also the one who experienced human suffering and death in order to blaze the path of salvation for us.

A reading from the book of Hebrews.
Long ago God spoke to our ancestors in many and various ways by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by a Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, through whom he also created the worlds. He is the reflection of God’s glory and the exact imprint of God’s very being, and he sustains all things by his powerful word. When he had made purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs.
Now God did not subject the coming world, about which we are speaking, to angels. But someone has testified somewhere,
“What are human beings that you are mindful of them, or mortals, that you care for them? You have made them for a little while lower than the angels; you have crowned them with glory and honor, subjecting all things under their feet.”
Now in subjecting all things to them, God left nothing outside their control. As it is, we do not yet see everything in subjection to them, but we do see Jesus, who for a little while was made lower than the angels, now crowned with glory and honor because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone. It was fitting that God, for whom and through whom all things exist, in bringing many children to glory, should make the pioneer of their salvation perfect through sufferings. For the one who sanctifies and those who are sanctified all have one Father. For this reason Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters, saying,
“I will proclaim your name to my brothers and sisters, in the midst of the congregation I will praise you.”

Word of God, word of life.
Thanks be to God.


Alleluia, Alleluia, alleluia.
Lord, to whom shall we go?
You have the words of eternal life.
Alleluia, Alleluia, alleluia.

GOSPEL Mark 10:2-16

Jesus announced and enacted in history the new reality of God’s surprising activity. These two stories demonstrate this new reality: Women and children are accepted and valued, not dismissed as inferior to adult men.

The holy gospel according to Mark.
Glory to you, O Lord.

Some Pharisees came, and to test [Jesus] they asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?” He answered them, “What did Moses command you?” They said, “Moses allowed a man to write a certificate of dismissal and to divorce her.” But Jesus said to them, “Because of your hardness of heart he wrote this commandment for you. But from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female.’ ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”
Then in the house the disciples asked him again about this matter. He said to them, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her; and if she divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery.”
People were bringing little children to him in order that he might touch them; and the disciples spoke sternly to them. But when Jesus saw this, he was indignant and said to them, “Let the little children come to me; do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs. Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it.” And he took them up in his arms, laid his hands on them, and blessed them.

The gospel of the Lord.
Praise to you, O Christ.


MESSAGE – Pr. Jamie Vannoy

HYMN OF THE DAY – “How Majestic Is Your Name” (W&P 66)

O Lord, our Lord, how majestic Is your name in all the earth!
O Lord, our Lord, how majestic Is your name in all the earth!

O Lord, we praise your name.
O Lord, we magnify your name,
Prince of Peace, mighty God,
O Lord God Almighty.


I believe in God, the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit,
born of the virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended into hell.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
he is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and he will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen.


Made children and heirs of God’s promise, we pray for the church, the world, and all in need.

A brief silence.
Each intercession concludes:

Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.

Receive these prayers, O God, and those in our hearts known only to you; through Jesus Christ our Lord.


God feeds us with the presence of Jesus Christ.


The Lord be with you.
And also with you.
Lift up your hearts.
We lift them to the Lord.
Let us give thanks to the Lord, our God.
It is right to give our thanks and praise.

It is indeed right, our duty and our joy, the we should at all times and in all places give thanks and praise to you, almighty an merciful God, through our Savior Jesus Christ; who on this day overcame death and the grave, and by his glorious resurrection opened to us the way of everlasting life. And so, with all the choirs of angels, with the church on earth and the hosts of heaven, we praise your name and join their unending hymn:

Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of pow’r and God of might, heaven and earth are full of your glory. Hosanna in the highest. Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna, hosanna in the highest. Hosanna, hosanna in the highest.


Blessed are you, O God of the universe. Your mercy is everlasting, and your faithfulness endures from age to age.

All creation sings your praise. Sun, moon, and stars reflect your glory. Mountains, lakes, and forests declare your wonders.

With Sarah and Abraham we go out in faith, trusting your promise.
With Miriam and Moses we celebrate our deliverance from bondage.
With Naomi and Ruth we bind ourselves together in covenant love.
With Jonathan and David we delight in the gift of deep and abiding friendship. With Mary and Elizabeth we welcome your presence in the birth of Jesus,
the Holy One.
With Lazarus, Martha, and Mary we give thanks for the blessings of family.
With disciples and followers we marvel at the reign of God come near.
With saints through the ages we ponder the mystery of Christ’s dying and rising.

In the night in which he was betrayed, our Lord Jesus took bread, and gave thanks; broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying: Take and eat; this is my body, given for you. Do this for the remembrance of me.

Again, after supper, he took the cup, gave thanks, and gave it for all to drink, saying: This cup is the new covenant in my blood, shed for you and for all people for the forgiveness of sin. Do this for the remembrance of me.

With hearts full of memories and hopes, we break this bread and share this cup, remembering the death and resurrection of Christ, and his promise to be with us always as we proclaim the mystery of faith.
Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again.

O Divine Lover, you are the breath within us. You are our heart’s desire. You are our priceless treasure. You are the garden of paradise.

Come down, O Love divine. Come among us, O passionate Fire. Come within us, O Spirit of unity.
Come, Holy Spirit.
Come, Holy Spirit.

Bless us, O Lord, and these your gifts, which we are about to receive from your bounty. Bless our table and the feast we share. Bless us with gladness of heart.
Come, Holy Spirit.
Come, Holy Spirit.

At this table make us your body. Form us to be people of justice and peace. Fill us with gratitude and generosity that we may bear the fruit of love in word and deed.
Come, Holy Spirit.
Come, Holy Spirit.

Praise to you, Author of creation.
Praise to you, O Beloved One.
Praise to you, O Giver of all good things.
Praise to you, blessed and holy Trinity,
one God, now and forever.


Gathered into one by the Holy Spirit, let us pray as Jesus taught us.
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into tempta- tion, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever. Amen.


All who hunger and thirst, come. The table is ready.


Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world; have mercy on us.
Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world; have mercy on us.
Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world; grant us peace, grant us peace.

COMMUNION HYMN – “Bind Us Together”

Bind us together, Lord,
Bind us together with cords
That cannot be broken.
Bind us together, Lord,
Bind us together, Lord;
Bind us together in love.

There is only one God;
There is only one King;
There is only one body;
That is why we can sing.

Bind us together, Lord,
Bind us together with cords
That cannot be broken.
Bind us together, Lord,
Bind us together, Lord;
Bind us together in love.

You are the family of God;
You are the promise divine;
You are God’s chosen desire;
You are the glorious new wine.

Bind us together, Lord,
Bind us together with cords
That cannot be broken.
Bind us together, Lord,
Bind us together, Lord;
Bind us together in love.


The body of Christ, given for you.
The blood of Christ, shed for you.

Each person may respond: Amen.


The body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ strengthen your and keep you always in his grace.


Lord of life, in the gift of your body and blood you turn the crumbs of our faith into a feast of salvation. Send us forth into the world with shouts of joy, bearing witness to the abundance of your love in Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.


God blesses us and sends us in mission to the world.


People of God, you are Christ’s body, bringing new life to a suffering world. The holy Trinity, one God, bless you now and forever.

SENDING HYMN – “How Great Is Our God”

The splendor of the King, clothed in majesty;
Let all the earth rejoice, all the earth rejoice.
He wraps himself in light, and darkness tries to hide,
And trembles at his voice, and trembles at his voice.

How great is our God!
Sing with me: How great is our God!
And all will see how great, how great is our God!

And age to age he stands, and time is in his hands;
Beginning and the End, Beginning and the End.
The Godhead, three in one: Father, Spirit, Son,
The Lion and the Lamb, the Lion and the Lamb.

How great is our God!
Sing with me: How great is our God!
And all will see how great, how great is our God!

Name above all names, worthy of all praise.
My heart will sing: How great is our God!
Name above all names, worthy of all praise.
My heart will sing: How great is our God!

How great is our God!
Sing with me: How great is our God!
And all will see how great, how great is our God!
How great is our God!
Sing with me: How great is our God!
And all will see how great, how great is our God!


Go in peace. The living Word dwells in you.
Created, saved and gifted by God, we seek, serve and share Jesus Christ.
Hallelujah, thanks be to God!


W + 2” = Worship Plus Two
Make a commitment to not only worship each week but also try to find a way to serve in the congregation and seek out a way to serve our community.


Upcoming Commemorations

Francis of Assisi, renewer of the church, died 1226
Monday, October 4, 2021

Born into the family of a wealthy merchant, Francis gave up his inheritance to serve poor people. He formed the Order of Friars Minor (called Franciscans), who took on poverty and the task of preaching “using words if necessary.” Francis had a spirit of gratitude for all of God’s creation.

Theodor Fliedner, renewer of society, died 1864
Monday, October 4, 2021

Fliedner helped to bring about a revival of the ministry of deaconesses among Lutherans. He was influenced in this by Moravian deaconesses he had met. The motherhouse he founded in Kaiserswerth, Germany, inspired many around the world to take up this ministry.

William Tyndale, translator, martyr, died 1536
Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Tyndale was ordained a priest in England, and wished to translate the Bible into English. He was opposed in this by King Henry VIII, causing him to flee to Germany. He completed the New Testament in 1525, but before he could finish the Old Testament, he was tried for heresy and burned at the stake.

Henry Melchior Muhlenberg, pastor in North America, died 1787
Thursday, October 7, 2021

Divided Lutherans in America asked leaders in Europe to send someone who could take charge and unite their work. Muhlenberg was sent, and was effective in organizing the American Lutherans. Among other accomplishments, his liturgical principles became the basis for the Common Service of 1888.

From Sundays and Seasons.com. Copyright 2014 Augsburg Fortress. All rights reserved. Reprinted by permission under Augsburg Fortress Liturgies Annual License #22920.

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Curches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Eblast 10/3