Sunday 2 April, 2017 – Fifth 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 Ezekiel 37:1-14 Vision of the valley of dry bones
PSALM Psalm 130 *For musical settings of this Psalm, please see the song suggestions below*
SECOND READING Romans 8:6-11 The Spirit of God lives in you
GOSPEL John 11:1-45 The raising of Lazarus- Jesus’ last sign

Notes on the readings:
EZEKIEL 37:1-14: Ezekiel was a prophet to the people of Israel in exile in Babylon. They were as devoid of political hope and possibility for national restoration as the field of dead bones of the slain shown him by the Lord. God directed Ezekiel to breathe life into the people in exile with the promises of his word. The comparison is reminiscent of God breathing into the nostrils of the first man to make him a living creature. The change to a picture of future opened graves gives promise that in the future the nation will be returned to its ‘own soil’, namely in Jerusalem and Israel. They will know thereby that the Lord has spoken.

ROMANS 8:6-11: Christ has met the complete requirement of God’s law which God had rightly demanded of all people. Believers in Christ have in this way been set free from the law of sin and death. Therefore no believing Christian can set his or her mind on the things of the ‘flesh’, ie sinful pleasures and evil which belong to the old sinful nature. Those things militate destructively against the Spirit’s indwelling. Even though a Christian is still afflicted bodily by sin, yet the life of the Spirit imparts life, just as the Spirit raised Jesus from the dead.

JOHN 11:1-45: The high point in this miracle of raising Lazarus from the dead is the revelation of Jesus as Son of God and the Messiah. The proof of this brought to a head the fanatical opposition of the religious leaders which resulted not long afterwards in his arrest, trial and execution in Jerusalem. While his full humanity is prominently evident in his emotional response to the grief of Mary, Martha and their friends, his divinity is manifested above all other considerations. He is seen to have foreknowledge of Lazarus’s death and what he would do to glorify God. Jesus teaches clearly that there is everlasting life through believing in him. He proves this by raising a body already into the stage of decomposition.


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 psalm:  Pr Stephen Pietsch ; NEW edited for lay reading sermon – psalm 130 – year a – lent 5
Based on first reading: edited for lay reading sermon – ezekiel 37 1-3 – year a – lent 5
Based on the gospel: Pr Vince Gerhardy

Opening sentences:
The Lord says: I am going to open your graves,
and bring you up from your graves, O my people.
And you shall know that I am the Lord when I open your graves,
and bring you up from your graves, O my people.
(Ezek 37:12,13 NRSV alt)

The Lord says: I will put my Spirit in you and you will live.
Then you will know that I the Lord have spoken,
and I have done it. 
(Ezek 37:14 NIV alt)

If the Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from death, lives in you,
then he who raised Christ from death
will also give life to your mortal bodies
by the presence of his Spirit in you.  (Rom 8:11 TEV)

Orders of service:
Lent 5  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
Almighty God,
look mercifully on your family,
that by your great goodness
they may be governed and preserved forever
in body and 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
Almighty God,
look in mercy on your family.
By your great goodness,
guide and protect us forever
in body and 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, alternative
(Let us pray that by faith in Christ we may share in his victory. [silence])
Most merciful God,
you saved humankind
by the death and resurrection of your Son, Jesus Christ.
Strengthen our faith in him who suffered on the cross,
so that we may triumph in the power of his victory.
For he lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.

OR, new
(Let us pray that we remain united with Christ. [silence])
Jesus our Saviour,
thank you for coming to give us life
through your suffering and death.
Keep us following you
wherever you lead us,
because we know that you have promised
to take us home to God.
For you live and reign
with the Father 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.
Jesus said, ‘I am the resurrection and the life.
Whoever believes in me will never die.’  (John 11:25,26 NIV alt)


Prayer after the gospel:
This is the gospel of the Lord.
Praise to you, O Christ.
Lord Jesus, the resurrection and the life,
thank you for overcoming death.
May we believe in you and live forever.


Offering prayer:
Thank you, eternal God,
for giving us new life.
Help us to live according to your Spirit,
and willingly serve you
and our fellow human beings,
with all that we are and all that we have.


Prayer of the Church/ General Prayer: Prayer of the church – Lent 5A

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.

Most merciful God,
you saved humankind
by the death and resurrection of your Son, Jesus Christ.
Through this sacrament,
strengthen our faith in him who suffered on the cross,
so that we may triumph in the power of his victory.
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, who raised Christ from death, will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit.
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: Ezekiel 37:1-14

128    O Spirit of life, O Spirit of God* G5
129    Breathe on me, breath of God G5
227    O Spirit of the living God G5
229    Revive Thy work, O Lord* G5
860    When this earth was created GS
1    Lord of our days
99    Pentecost prayer
142    O Mary, don’t you weep (Resurrection version)
202    We’re gonna move when the Spirit says move
218    Spirit, Spirit of gentleness
251    God sends us his Spirit
416     We will rise up
502    Patiently waiting for you
401    O Spirit of life, O Spirit of God
405    O Spirit of the living God
407    Breathe on me, breath of God
409    O breath of life, come sweeping through us

Second reading: Romans 8:6-11

119    Come down, O Love divine G9
122    O Holy Ghost, Thou gift divine* G5
133    O Holy Ghost, Thy people bless
141    Father of heaven, whose love profound G5
774    Holy Spirit, ever dwelling G6
798    Eternal ruler of the ceaseless round G6
251    God sends us his Spirit
264    Spirit of God, you’re with me
131    Father of heaven, whose love profound
398    Come down, O Love divine
410    Holy Spirit, ever dwelling
412    God sends us his Spirit to befriend and help us

Gospel: John 11:1-45

175    Thou art the way* G6
176    We come, O Christ, to Thee G9
327    Jesus, Thy blood and righteousness* (alt tune 276, G5)
838    I am the Bread of life GS
142    O Mary, don’t you weep (Resurrection version)
167    I am the bread of life
225    Why do you love me?
236    Jesus the Christ said
490    When human voices cannot sing
226    Thou art the way; by thee alone
239    Jesus the Lord said
535    I am the Bread of life
637    Lord of the living, in your name assembled
682    When human voices cannot sing

The following is a metrical paraphrase by David Schütz , which may be sung to the tune of Kingsfold (‘I heard the voice of Jesus say’, LH 306, TIS 585, AT 137). If reproducing this version, please put ‘Words (c) David Schütz’ at the beginning or the end of the psalm.

Out of the depths, I cry to you,
Lord, hear my tearful prayer!
If you should mark iniquity,
O Lord God, who could stand?
But you forgive the sorry soul,
so all may fear your name.
I wait for you, for you I long,
and in your word I hope.

I wait for him far more than those
who wait for dawn to come.
O Isra-el, hope in the Lord!
with him is steadfast love.
He has great power to redeem,
and he alone can save
his people from their deadly sin
and raise them from the grave.

Music Resources Vol. 3– Psalm settings: Psalm 130 p225 , Psalm 130 p226

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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