Sunday 12 March, 2017 – Second Sunday in Lent, Year A

Here are the resources you need for this Sunday. Please feel free to choose what is suitable for your congregation’s needs. You will notice that the orders of service are available in different formats: choose the “pdf” format if you want something that is ready to print and photocopy, the “doc” or “rtf” format if you wish to change the formatting yourself or the “ppt” format if you use PowerPoint.

Altar colour: Violet

Bible readings:
FIRST READING Genesis 12:1-4a The call of Abraham
PSALM Psalm 121 *For musical settings of this Psalm, please see the song suggestions below*
SECOND READING Romans 4:1-5, 13-17 Abraham our father, justified by faith
GOSPEL John 3:1-17 God so loved the world that he gave his only Son

NEW! Notes on the readings:

GENESIS 12:1-4a: Abraham lived around 2000 BC. He had settled in Haran, but God called him to go to a far country which he did not know. Not only that, but he would thereby need to break off relationships with his kindred people. He was promised, though childless, that he would be the ancestor of a great nation, that God would bless him and others through him and that all the families of the earth would be blessed through him. What an amazing faith Abraham displayed, simply to trust God’s word and promise and to go.

ROMANS 4:1-5;13-17: In the previous chapter Paul told the Roman Christians that salvation is given as a free gift by God. It is not given in answer to a person’s obedience to the commands of God’s law the way Jewish teachers maintained. It is given solely by God’s grace through faith in God’s promises in the gospel of Christ. In this section Paul quotes Genesis 15:6 to illustrate to the Romans that there is no contradiction between this teaching and God’s dealings in the Old Testament. Abram lived before the commands of the law were given. He was justified (acquitted of sin) before God by faith. God counted that to him as righteousness. Therefore all who believe, regardless of whether Jew of Gentile, can have the same blessing through Christ, simply through faith.

JOHN 3:1-17: The words of our Lord himself in this reading authenticate the previous two readings. Baptism bestows new life through the power of the Spirit. One is born again. No one can attain spiritual life through one’s own human efforts, no matter how devoted or sincere. ‘That which is born of the flesh is flesh.’ The New Testament word ‘flesh’ includes the meaning of the ‘sinful nature’ inborn since the fall into sin. That is why new birth by the Spirit’s washing is ‘being born from above’, which confers the kingdom of God. Our Lord made it even clearer in verse 16. It is God’s love which not only sent his Son into the world and gave him into death, but also rescues from everlasting death and bestows everlasting life on whoever simply believes this promise of the Son.

Lay-readers please note: the linked sermons have not been edited for general use. As part of your preparations, keep in mind that they have been written for specific people in a specific context, and for this reason the issues they address or the examples they use may not be entirely suitable for people in your congregation. If you feel this is the case, you may need to make minor adjustments or find another sermon.
Based on gospel reading:  Pr Vince GerhardyPr David Christian; Pr Heath Pukallus ; NEW Pr Heath Pukallus; NEW edited for lay reading sermon – john 3 1-17 – year a – lent 2
Based on second reading: edited for lay reading sermon – romans 4 16-17 – year a – lent 2

Opening sentences:
Just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up,
that whoever believes in him may have eternal life. 
(John 3:14 NRSV)


Orders of service:
Lent 2  Sunday Word and Prayer ( pdf / doc / ppt )
Service of the Word (pdf / rtf/ ppt)
Morning Praise (pdf/ rtf/ ppt)
Service without communion (pdf / doc /ppt )
Service orders with holy communion
Service with communion (page 6) (pdf / doc / ppt
Alternative form A (page 58) (pdf / doc/ ppt)
Sing the Feast (Chataway) (pdf / doc/ ppt)
Simplified Spoken (pdf / doc/ ppt)
Service with Five Songs of Faith (pdf / rtf/ ppt)

Prayer of the Day (Collect): Choose one of the following
O God,
since you know that by ourselves
we have no strength:
Keep us both outwardly and inwardly,
that we may be defended from all adversities
that may happen to the body,
and from all evil thoughts
that may assault and hurt the soul;
through your Son,
Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.

OR, modernised traditional
Lord God,
you know that by ourselves we have no strength.
Defend us from all calamities
that may happen to the body,
and cleanse us from all evil thoughts
that may attack the soul.
We ask this through your Son,
Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.

OR, new (revised alternative)
(Let us pray that we deny ourselves and trust in Christ. [silence])
Merciful God,
we thank you for sending your Son
to suffer and give his life for all people.
Teach us, who have been born again,
to forget ourselves
and rely only on Christ our Saviour.
For he lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.

Verse  (to be used after the second reading):
Use either the Verse given in the order of service or the following verse.
God so loved the world that he gave his only Son,
so that everyone who believes in him may not perish
but may have eternal life.  (John 3:16 NRSV)

Prayer after the gospel:
This is the gospel of the Lord.
Praise to you, O Christ.
Thank you, Lord Jesus,
for coming into the world as Saviour.
May we believe in you and be born again.


Offering prayer:
Thank you, loving God,
for sending your Son as our Saviour.
Help us to trust in him
and follow wherever you lead us,
serving you and our fellow human beings
with all that we have.


Prayer of the Church/ General Prayer: Prayer of the church – Lent 2A

Resources for services with Holy Communion
It is indeed right and good,
Lord God, holy Father,
that we should at all times and in all places
give thanks to you,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
He has taken on himself our sin,
so that we might die to sin
and live to righteousness.
And so, with angels and archangels,
and with all the company of heaven,
we adore and praise your glorious name:

Every time we eat this bread and drink from this cup
we proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.
(Thanks be to God.)
Come, everything is ready.

Let us pray.
Heavenly Father, as you did not spare your own Son,
but gave him up to die on the cross for us all:
Grant that we who have received
his body and blood in the sacrament
may live in him and he in us,
so that, as your children,
we may walk in your ways
and serve you all the days of our life;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.

OR use the third prayer of the day (as listed above) at this point. It may be modified as follows.

Merciful God,
we thank you for sending your Son
to suffer and give his life for us
and to make us your people.
Teach us,
who have received his body and blood
in this holy meal,
to forget ourselves
and rely only on Christ our Saviour.
For he lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.


This seasonal blessing is used together with (ie before) the usual blessing in the order of service.

(May) Christ our crucified Saviour draw you to himself,
so that you may find in him the assurance of sins forgiven
and the gift of eternal life; . . .


Go in peace. God has loved you so much that he has given his only Son.
Thanks be to God.  OR  In the name of Christ. Amen.

Visual images: His Word in Pictures

Song/Hymn suggestions: * =  Modernised version available (please click here to go to the Modernised hymns page) ;G3, G4 . . . =  Guitar chords available in the Music Package 3, 4 . . .; GS =  Guitar chords in the Supplement to LH
First reading: Genesis 12:1-4a
180    Wake, arise, wake, arise G4
349    Jesus, I my cross have taken G3
407    If thou but suffer God to guide thee* (vv 1,7) G6
456    The God of Abraham praise G9
480    A pilgrim and a stranger* G6
854    Be still, my soul
862    As we step from the edge of morning GS
87    Walkin’ down the road
101    Jesus, please watch over us
114    The promised land
246    Thy word is a lamp
384    If we will trust in God to guide us (vv 1,4)
403    God of Abraham (vv 1,10,17)
413    Will you come and follow me
123    Be still, my soul: the Lord is on your side
125    The God of Abraham praise
554    If we will trust in God to guide us (vv 1,4)

Second reading: Romans 4:1-5, 13-17
321    Faith is a living power from heaven* G5
324    Salvation unto us has come* G5
332    Thy works, not mine, O Christ* G8
456    The God of Abraham praise G9
851    Amazing grace GS
114    The promised land
130    I am covered over
131    Amazing grace
144    No longer strangers
345    Nothing but the blood
125    The God of Abraham praise
129    Amazing grace (how sweet the sound)
195    Salvation now to us has come

Gospel: John 3:1-17
116    Come, Holy Spirit, heavenly dove*
127    Come, Holy Spirit, come* G4
130    O enter, Lord, Thy temple* (vv 1,2)
138    The Lord my God be praised
154    Amazing love that rent the heavens asunder* G4
164    Love divine, all loves excelling G3
271    The gospel shows the Father’s grace G5
276    Dearest Jesus, we are here* G5 (baptism – infant)
279    He that believes and is baptized* G5 (baptism – general)
322    Dear Christians, one and all rejoice*
441    With joyful hearts your praises bring* G3
783    Christ is the world’s light G6
791    O love, how deep, how broad, how high G5
793    To God be the glory GS
826    Father welcomes GS
835    Bread of heaven, on you we feed G5 (holy communion)
852    God loved the world so that He gave G5
863    Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine GS
881    O Lord my God, when I in awesome wonder G7
4    Father welcomes
24    God’s love
28    I’m happy
105   Spirit of God
126    The light of Christ
129    Everyone
237    John 3:16
316    From the air and from the light
320   I was there to hear your borning cry
349    There is a redeemer
417    Water and the Spirit
421    Born forever
451    Saviour of the world
469    Wind is moving
500   Our lives for you
522   New life
118    We give immortal praise
147    To God be the glory
155    O Lord my God, when I in awesome wonder
194    O love how deep, how broad, how high
196    Dear Christians, one and all rejoice
213    Father, whose everlasting love
217    Love divine, all loves excelling
241    So God loved the people of the world
246    Christ is the world’s light
479    They that believe and are baptised (baptism – general)
480    Dearest Jesus, we are here (baptism – infant)
491    Father welcomes
494    In water we grow
513    Bread of heaven, on you we feed (holy communion)
676    A spendthrift lover is the Lord

Psalm 121
TIS 76, I to the hills will lift my eyes, and 77, Lifting my eyes up to the hills, are paraphrases of Psalm 121. Songs ATO 407 and LHS 868 are also based on this psalm.
Music Resources Vol. 3– Psalm settings: Psalm 121 p208 , Psalm 121 p209

Here are some new and modernised hymns suitable for Lent.

Lord, your suffering love to us (Words: Stephen Pietsch; tune: LH 590, TIS 561 Monk’s Gate)

Lord, your suffering love to us
has won salvation.
Let our hearts forgiven thus
gain inspiration
our debtors to forgive;
in unity to live,
walking the path of peace,
patiently bearing.

Cleanse our hearts of bitterness.
Heal all division.
Teach your church to live in peace;
true to our mission.
Jesus, you bore the cross
and suffered death for us!
Pardoned and pardoning,
we live by mercy.

Freedom to the heart you bring,
freedom for living.
From our opened hearts shall spring
your sweet forgiving.
Under your cross we stand
together, hand in hand.
One through your suffering!
One in your glory!

Now is the healing time decreed (Evening office hymn for Lent from before 12th century, translated TA Lacey, modernised by David Schütz; suggested tune: LH 74, Wenn wir in höchsten Nöten)

Now is the healing time decreed
for sins of heart, of word or deed,
when we in humble fear record
the wrong that we have done the Lord;

who, always merciful and good,
has borne so long our wayward mood,
nor cut us off unsparingly
in our so great iniquity.

Therefore with fasting and with prayer,
our secret sorrow we declare;
with all good striving seek his face,
and lowly-hearted plead for grace.

Cleanse us, O Lord, from every stain,
help us the joy of praise to gain,
till with the angels linked in love
joyful we tread your courts above.

Father and Son and Spirit blessed,
to you is all our prayer addressed,
to you, in threefold name adored,
from age to age, the only Lord.

O kind Creator, bow your ear (Ascribed to St Gregory the Great, 5th cent., translated by TA Lacey, modernised by David Schütz; suggested tune: LH 65 Das walt Gott Vater)

O kind Creator, bow your ear
to mark the cry, to know the tear
before your throne of mercy spent
in this, the holy fast of Lent.

Our hearts are open, Lord, to you:
you know the sin and wrong we do;
pour out on all who seek your face
the fullness of your pardoning grace.

Our sins are many, this we know;
spare us, good Lord, your mercy show;
and for the honour of your name,
from power of death, your people claim.

Give us the self-control that springs
from discipline of outward things,
that as we keep the inward fast
our hearts may seek the things that last.

We pray you, holy Trinity,
one God, unchanging Unity,
that we from this our abstinence
may reap the fruits of penitence.

Forty days and forty nights (Words, George Hunt Smyttan (1822-70), alt. by David Schütz; tune: Heinlein, TIS 591 or Vienna, LHS 207, TIS 440). Note: A shorter version of this hymn may be found in Together in Song 591.

Forty days and forty nights
you were fasting in the wild;
forty days and forty nights
strong, yet tempted all the while.

Beating sun throughout the day,
freezing cold when light had fled,
prowling beasts around your way,
stones your pillow, earth your bed.

Now we know, Lord, that you share
our temptation and our pain.
Teach us how to strive in prayer,
fighting greed for earthly gain.

Then when sin and evil press
on our hearts so weak and frail,
Victor in the wilderness,
help us not to stray or fail.

Send us those angelic powers
such as ministered to you.
So shall grace and peace be ours
as you show us what to do.

Keep, O keep us, Saviour dear,
ever, always, by your side,
so with you may we appear
at the heav’nly Eastertide.

Dear Lord and Father of mankind (Words, John Greenleaf Whittier (1807-92), alt. by David Schütz; tune: Repton TIS 598).
Note: A less modernised version of this hymn may be found in Together in Song 598.

Dear Father, Lord of humankind,
forgive our foolish ways;
reclothe us in our rightful mind,
in purer lives, your service find,
in deeper rev’rence, praise,
in deeper rev’rence, praise.

In simple trust, like those who heard
beside the Syrian sea,
the gracious calling of the Lord,
let us, like them, obey his word,
‘Rise up, and follow me.’
‘Rise up, and follow me.’

In Sabbath rest by Galilee,
with hills so calm above,
there Jesus shared on bended knee
the silence of eternity,
interpreted by love!
interpreted by love!

Rain down on us your quietness,
till all our strivings cease;
take from our minds the strain and stress,
and let our ordered lives confess
the beauty of your peace,
the beauty of your peace.

Breathe through the heat of our desire,
refresh our weary heart;
let sense be dumb, let flesh retire;
speak through the earthquake, wind and fire,
O still small voice of calm!
O still small voice of calm!

Note that Luther’s Dear Christians, one and all rejoice has seven verses in LH ( no 322) and five verses in modernised form in TIS (no 196). A modern version of all ten verses may be found in ‘Modernised Lutheran Hymnal hymns’ (no 322); this tells more completely the salvation history, and may be split into two hymns, verses 1-5 and 6-10.

The Lutheran Hymnal with Supplement has seasonal sections for Lent and the Passion. Since this is not so with the ‘All Together’ songbooks, a list of songs which could be considered for use in Lent is given here. Note: These songs focus on the themes of repentance and discipleship that characterise Lent. For songs that concentrate on the Passion, see the document ‘Holy Week’, under ‘All Together songs suitable for Holy Week’, in this folder.

6    O Father, my Father
10    In the house of God
34    Seek ye first
84    I want Jesus to walk with me
93    Pass my love around
95    Prayer of St Francis
114    The promised land (Come, my brother)
137    I heard the voice of Jesus
145    What wondrous love is this
156    He set us free
168    Hear our prayer
175    The greatest commandment
177    Love one another
180    A time for building bridges
185    Jesus, Son of God and man
190    The way is low
191    The servant song
197    When I needed a neighbour
235    In your hand, my Saviour
261    The Servant King
265    Take us now, we are yours
274    In Jesus’ name (When I call you)
276    Into your death we go
286    Sorrowing song
292    Because we bear your name
300    Practise love
308    We are called to follow Jesus
310    Yesu, Yesu, fill us with your love
322    Lord, where have we left you
327    Sorry
329    This kingdom
331    Turn to me with all your heart
332    We are sorry
348    Sing hey for the carpenter
354    Change my heart, O God
357    Give us hearts to know you, Lord
372    Teach me your way
373    Bound by love
384    If we will trust in God to guide us
397    Before I take the body of the Lord (These I lay down)
401    Follow me
413    The Summons (Will you come and follow me)
436    Amen, amen, it shall be so!
482    His love within the world
491    You call me to love
495    Come and follow me
506    Oh, let’s get up to love and serve
536    If you were a king (Palm Sunday)
538    They went to the garden
571    On that final night (communion)
600    Jesus the bright morning star
622    Out of this world
626    Together through the valley
630   You would not
635    How deep the Father’s love for us
659    Remember now my children
668    As you have loved

25    As pants the hart for cooling streams
26    Just as a lost and thirsty deer
31    Have mercy on us, living Lord
32    Have mercy on me, God, in your kindness
81    Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord
131    Father of heaven, whose love profound
201    King of glory, King of peace
206    With joy we meditate the grace
252    When he was baptised in Jordan
407    Breathe on me, breath of God
463    May this Lenten discipline
546    Lord Jesus, think on me
549    God be in my head
576    O for a closer walk with God
577    Come, let us too the Lord our God
580    Lead us, heavenly Father, lead us
591    Forty days and forty nights
633    Lord, we are blind; the world of sight
684    Love will be our Lenten calling

While the LCA does not necessarily endorse the content of these websites, you may find them helpful in your worship planning.
Small Church Music: You can download mp3 and midi files of popular hymn tunes from this site.
Together to Celebrate:lectionary based song and hymn suggestions from a variety of sources.
Singing from the Lectionary:has song and hymn suggestions based on the RCL from other hymnals.
Song Select: you can search for more contemporary songs by theme. If your congregation has a paid subscription you can also download sheet music.
Hymns Without Words: mp3 downloads of hymn tunes.
Song and Hymn Index. Contains all the indexes of the LHS and AT books in one Excel file. Download the file (zip file) here.
Metrical Psalms by Dale Schoening : Psalms set to well known hymn tunes.
Keyboard Accompaniments for Together in Song – CDs are available for purchase through ACR. CD 1 & 2 ; CD 3 & 4.

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