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Welcome Home!

Welcome Home!

Easter Sunrise Service For The Resurrection Of Our Lord

Rev. Gregory Mech | April 1, 2018 | Sunday Service | 6:30 am | Immanuel Lutheran Church – Joplin, MO

Easter Sunday Sunrise – Welcome Home!

As We Gather

Our overall theme for this Lenten Season has been “Return from Exile: A Lenten Journey.” Every journey has a unique beginning and ending, and this journey has proven to be unique as well. Today, Easter Day, that journey is completed. From the Mountain of Transfiguration to the empty tomb, we have come a long way. We have journeyed through gardens, looked upon trees, explored mountains, traveled through the wilderness, and crossed rivers. We have eaten meals and descended into pits, but now we have arrived at the end of our journey—the fulfillment of our journey. However, while the empty tomb points us to our final destination, that destination does not end at the tomb. Although the tomb is empty, and it is not now and will never be our home. Heaven is our home because Christ has risen and ascended, and where He is, there also we shall be! Heaven is our home where we gather around the throne of the Lamb in His kingdom.

HYMN “The Day of Resurrection” (LSB 478)

P In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

C Amen.

OPENING SENTENCES Ps. 118:19–24

P Open to me the gates of righteousness,

C that I may enter through them and give thanks to the Lord.

P This is the gate of the Lord;

C the righteous shall enter through it.

P I thank You that You have answered me

C and have become my salvation.

P The stone that the builders rejected

C has become the cornerstone.

P This is the Lord’s doing;

C it is marvelous in our eyes.

P This is the day that the Lord has made;

C let us rejoice and be glad in it.

EASTER RESPONSE

P Christ is risen!

C He is risen indeed! Alleluia!

CONFESSION AND ABSOLUTION

P Brothers and sisters, the tomb was empty, but Christ was alive. The Father had accepted the Son’s sacrifice on our behalf. Let us therefore draw near with true hearts and confess our sins to God our Father, asking Him in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to grant us forgiveness.

P Our help is in the name of the Lord,

C who made heaven and earth.

P I said, I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,

C and You forgave the iniquity of my sin.

Silence for reflection on God’s Word and for self-examination.

P O almighty God, merciful Father,

C we confess that in our journey from exile in sin to Your gracious presence, there have been many times we did not expect You to be listening. Like the women at our Savior’s tomb, our faith often did not include Your surprising answers. And when we have heard news better than we could understand, we have failed to give You the credit and share it with the people around us. In our fallen condition, we have not loved You above all else nor our neighbors as ourselves. Forgive us for small faith, private words, and tentative actions. For the sake of Your Son, our risen Lord Jesus Christ, turn us around and strengthen us to walk in Your ways to the glory of Your holy name, now and into eternity.

P Throughout history God made more promises than His people expected or deserved, and in Jesus He kept them all. In our place He lived obediently and died innocently, and on this day rose triumphant from the grave, signaling the Father’s acceptance of His payment for all our sins. He is with us today and will one day welcome us into our eternal home in His presence. As a called and ordained servant of Christ, and by His authority, I therefore forgive you all your sins in the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit.

C Amen.

ENTRANCE HYMN “Jesus Christ Is Risen Today” (LSB 457)

KYRIE (spoken)

A In peace let us pray to the Lord.

C Lord, have mercy and welcome us home rejoicing.

A For the peace from above and for our salvation let us pray to the Lord.

C Lord, have mercy and welcome us home rejoicing.

A For the peace of the whole world, for the well-being of the Church of God and for the unity of all let us pray to the Lord.

C Lord, have mercy and welcome us home rejoicing.

A For this holy house and for all who offer here their worship and praise let us pray to the Lord.

C Lord, have mercy and welcome us home rejoicing.

A Help, save, comfort, and defend us, gracious Lord.

C Amen.

HYMN OF PRAISE “Alleluia, Alleluia! Hearts to Heaven” (LSB 477)

SALUTATION

P The Lord be with you.

C And also with you.

PRAYERS OF THE DAY

P Let us pray. Almighty God the Father, on this day Your only-begotten Son, Jesus Christ, rose from death, leaving the tomb empty for all to see.

C Grant that we may view it by faith as a sign pointing beyond, to our eternal home with angels and archangels, prophets and apostles in Your glorious presence;

P through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

C Amen.

P Let us pray. Almighty God the Father, through Your only-begotten Son, Jesus Christ, You have overcome death and opened the gate of everlasting life to us.

C Grant that we, who celebrate with joy the day of our Lord’s resurrection, may be raised from the death of sin by Your life-giving Spirit;

P through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

C Amen.

OLD TESTAMENT READING Isaiah 25:6–9 (When we shall see God face-to-face)

L Isaiah foresees the “welcome home” awaiting us, where we shall see God face-to-face. The Old Testament Reading for the Resurrection of Our Lord is from the twenty-fifth chapter of Isaiah.

L On this mountain the Lord of hosts will make for all peoples

Men: a feast of rich food, a feast of well-aged wine,

Women: of rich food full of marrow, of aged wine well refined.

L And He will swallow up on this mountain

Men: the covering that is cast over all peoples,

Women: the veil that is spread over all nations.

L He will swallow up death forever;

Men: and the Lord God will wipe away tears from all faces,

Women: and the reproach of His people He will take away from all the earth,

All: for the Lord has spoken.

L It will be said on that day,

Men: “Behold, this is our God; we have waited for Him, that He might save us.

Women: This is the Lord; we have waited for Him;

All: let us be glad and rejoice in His salvation.”

L This is the Word of the Lord.

C Thanks be to God.

PSALM and HYMN  Psalm 16 and “Christ the Lord Is Risen Today” (LSB 469)

P David prophetically asserted that God would not let His Holy One see corruption, but lead the path to life. Christ’s resurrection fulfills the prophecy.

P Preserve me, O God, for in You I take refuge.

I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord;

I have no good apart from You.”

As for the saints in the land, they are the excellent ones,

in whom is all my delight.

C (sung) “Christ the Lord is ris’n today!” Saints on earth and angels say;

Raise your joys and triumphs high; Sing, ye heav’ns, and earth, reply.

Love’s redeeming work is done, Fought the fight, the battle won;

Lo! Our Sun’s eclipse is o’er; Lo! He sets in blood no more.

P The sorrows of those who run after another god shall multiply;

their drink offerings of blood I will not pour out

or take their names on my lips.

The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup; You hold my lot.

The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;

indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.

I bless the Lord who gives me counsel;

in the night also my heart instructs me.

C (sung) Vain the stone, the watch, the seal; Christ hath burst the gates of hell.

Death in vain forbids His rise; Christ has opened paradise.

Lives again our glorious King! Where, O death, is now thy sting?

Once He died our souls to save; Where thy victory, O grave?

P I have set the Lord always before me;

because He is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.

Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices;

my flesh also dwells secure.

For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol,

or let Your Holy One see corruption.

You make known to me the path of life;

in Your presence there is fullness of joy;

at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

C (sung) Soar we now where Christ has led; Foll’wing our exalted Head.

Made like Him, like Him we rise; Ours the cross, the grave, the skies.

Hail the Lord of earth and heav’n! Praise to Thee by both be giv’n!

Thee we greet triumphant now: Hail, the resurrection, Thou!

EPISTLE 1 Corinthians 15:1–11 (Christ appeared even to Saul/Paul)

L Paul reminds the Church in Corinth and us that our Savior is with us still. The Epistle is from the fifteen chapter of First Corinthians.

L Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain.

For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received:

Left side: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures,

Right side: that He was buried,

Left side: that He was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures,

Right side: and that He appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve.

Left side: Then He appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep.

Right side: Then He appeared to James, then to all the apostles.

L Last of all, as to one untimely born, He appeared also to me. For I am the least of the apostles, unworthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me. Whether then it was I or they, so we preach and so you believed.

L This is the Word of the Lord.

C Thanks be to God.

HOLY GOSPEL Mark 16:1–8

L The Holy Gospel according to St. Mark, the sixteenth chapter.

C Glory to You, O Lord.

When the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of James and Salome bought spices, so that they might go and anoint Him. And very early on the first day of the week, when the sun had risen, they went to the tomb.

And they were saying to one another, “Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance of the tomb?” And looking up, they saw that the stone had been rolled back—it was very large. And entering the tomb, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, dressed in a white robe, and they were alarmed. And he said to them, “Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has risen; He is not here. See the place where they laid Him. But go, tell His disciples and Peter that He is going before you to Galilee. There you will see Him, just as He told you.” And they went out and fled from the tomb, for trembling and astonishment had seized them, and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid.

L This is the Gospel of the Lord.

C Praise to You, O Christ.

EASTER RESPONSE

L Christ is risen!

C He is risen indeed! Alleluia!

HYMN OF THE DAY  “I’m But a Stranger Here” (LSB 748)

SERMON “Welcome Home!”

APOSTLES’ CREED

PRAYER OF THE CHURCH

Each petition concludes with “let us pray to the Lord.”

The congregation responds, “Risen Lord, have mercy.”

PEACE OF THE LORD

P The peace of our risen Lord be with you always.

C And also with you.

We share Christ’s peace with one another, saying, “Peace be with you.”

OFFERING

OFFERTORY “Praise God, from Whom All Blessings Flow” (LSB 805)

LORD”S PRAYER

BENEDICTION

P Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, equip you with everything good that you may do His will, working in us that which is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Heb. 13:20–21

C Amen.

EASTER RESPONSE

P Christ is risen!

C He is risen indeed! Alleluia!

HYMN “Alleluia! Jesus Is Risen” (LSB 474)

Acknowledgments

Copyright © 2017 Concordia Publishing House. All rights reserved. Used by permission. Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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