Return From False Witness | Lent Midweek 3 | March 10, 2021

Return From False Witness | Lent Midweek 3 | March 10, 2021

Worship Service for Midweek of Lent 3

Rev. Gregory Mech | March 10, 2021 | Midweek of Lent 3 | Lenten Worship Service | Immanuel Lutheran Church – Joplin, Missouri | 7:00 pm

Still Wearing Face Masks, Some Classes and On-Campus Activities Have Returned | In-Person Services and Holy Communion are back! Limited Seating. Learn more.

Lent 2021 has begun. Join us for our 7:00 Wednesday Midweek Services leading up to Holy Week and Easter. Return To The Lord!

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Special thanks to all who helped to make this broadcast possible today:
Rev. Gregory Mech, DCE Jason Glaskey, organist Betty Lingenfelter,
the COVID Committee and Board of Elders.

lenten wednesdays. 7:00 worship online or in person. return to the lord. Immanuel Lutheran Church LCMS. Joplin Missouri.
Join us each Wednesday of Lent 2021 — Return To The Lord

One of the most straightforward sayings in the Book of Proverbs states, “A faithful witness does not lie, but a false witness breathes out lies” (Proverbs 14:5). A word of false witness can direct a series of actions in a deviant and destructive path. We find that negative action happening in the Passion account of our Lord, where we see Jesus standing before Caiaphas with a series of false witnesses seeking to defame the holy, innocent Lamb of God with untruths and lies. False witness can be a deadly weapon. Whenever we ask, as did the psalmist, “O Lord, open my lips” (Psalm 51:15), may what we then express always be true witness set in speech that declares the praises of God.

March 10, 2021 — Midweek of Lent 3


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

OPENING SENTENCES Joel 2:13; Psalm 86:6-7

Return to the Lord, your God, for He is gracious and merciful,
slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love, and repents of evil.

Give ear, O Lord, to my prayer;
listen to my plea for grace.

In the day of my trouble I call upon You,
for You answer me.


Let us make our confession to our God, seeking His grace and forgiveness. Together we sing stanzas 1–3 of the hymn “Lord, to You I Make Confession.”

HYMN “Lord, to You I Make Confession” 608: 1-3

Lord, to You I make confession:
I have sinned and gone astray, 
I have multiplied transgression,
Chosen for myself my way.
Led by You to see my errors,
Lord, I tremble at Your terrors.

Yet, though conscience’ voice appall me,
Father, I will seek Your face;
Though Your child I dare not call me,
Yet receive me in Your grace. 
Do not for my sins forsake me;
Let Your wrath not overtake me.

For Your Son has suffered for me,
Given Himself to rescue me,
Died to save me and restore me,
Reconciled and set me free.
Jesus’ cross alone can vanquish
These dark fears and sooth this anguish.

The almighty and merciful Lord grant you pardon, forgiveness, and remission of all your sins.


The Lord be with you.
And also with you.

Let us pray. Let Your blessing be upon us, heavenly Father, as we pass through these holy days in which we remember the sufferings and death of our Lord; and grant that as true and faithful witnesses we follow Him in willing obedience, learn His gracious humility, and be filled with His love; through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who loved us and gave Himself for us.

FIRST READING Leviticus 24:13–16

A reading from Leviticus, the twenty-fourth chapter.

Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Bring out of the camp the one who cursed, and let all who heard him lay their hands on his head, and let all the congregation stone him. And speak to the people of Israel, saying, Whoever curses his God shall bear his sin. Whoever blasphemes the name of the Lord shall surely be put to death. All the congregation shall stone him. The sojourner as well as the native, when he blasphemes the Name, shall be put to death.”

This is the Word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

PSALM 27:11–14

Teach me Your way, O Lord,
and lead me on a level path because of my enemies.

Give me not up to the will of my adversaries;
for false witnesses have risen against me, and they breathe out violence.

I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the Lord
in the land of the living!

Wait for the Lord;
be strong, and let your heart take courage;
wait for the Lord!

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be forever. Amen.

SECOND READING Acts 22:12-16

A reading from Acts, the twenty-second chapter.

And one Ananias, a devout man according to the law, well spoken of by all the Jews who lived there, came to me, and standing by me said to me, “Brother Saul, receive your sight.” And at that very hour I received my sight and saw him. And he said, “The God of our fathers appointed you to know His will, to see the Righteous One and to hear a voice from His mouth; for you will be a witness for Him to everyone of what you have seen and heard. And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on His name.”

This is the Word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

HOLY GOSPEL Matthew 26:57–68

The Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew, the twenty-sixth chapter.
Glory to You, O Lord.

Then those who had seized Jesus led Him to Caiaphas the high priest, where the scribes and the elders had gathered. And Peter was following Him at a distance, as far as the courtyard of the high priest, and going inside he sat with the guards to see the end. Now the chief priests and the whole council were seeking false testimony against Jesus that they might put Him to death, but they found none, though many false witnesses came forward. At last two came forward and said, “This man said, ‘I am able to destroy the temple of God, and to rebuild it in three days.’” And the high priest stood up and said, “Have You no answer to make? What is it that these men testify against You?” But Jesus remained silent. And the high priest said to Him, “I adjure You by the living God, tell us if You are the Christ, the Son of God.” Jesus said to him, “You have said so. But I tell you, from now on you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power and coming on the clouds of heaven.” Then the high priest tore his robes and said, “He has uttered blasphemy. What further witnesses do we need? You have now heard His blasphemy. What is your judgment?” They answered, “He deserves death.” Then they spit in His face and struck Him. And some slapped Him, saying, “Prophesy to us, You Christ! Who is it that struck You?”

This is the Gospel of the Lord.
Praise to You, O Christ.

SERMON HYMN “Christ, the Life of All the Living” 420: 1,2,5

Christ, the life of all the living,
Christ, the death of death, our foe,
Who, Thyself for me once giving
To the darkest depths of woe,
Through Thy suffering, death, and merit
I eternal life inherit.
Thousand, thousand thanks shall be,
Dearest Jesus, unto Thee.

Thou, ah! Thou hast taken on Thee
Bonds and stripes, a cruel rod;
Pain and scorn were heaped upon Thee,
O, Thou sinless Son of God!
Thus didst Thou my soul deliver
From the bonds of sin forever.
Thousand, thousand thanks shall be,
Dearest Jesus, unto Thee.

Thou hast suffered men to bruise Thee,
That from pain I might be free;
Falsely did Thy foes accuse Thee:
Thence I gain security;
Comfortless Thy soul did languish
Me to comfort in my anguish.
Thousand, thousand thanks shall be,
Dearest Jesus, unto Thee.


SERMON RESPONSE “Grant Peace, We Pray, in Mercy, Lord” 778

Grant peace, we pray, in mercy, Lord;
Peace in our time, O send us!
For there is none on earth but You,
None other to defend us.
You only, Lord, can fight for us. Amen.


O Lord,
have mercy.
O Christ,
have mercy.
O Lord,
have mercy.

O Christ,
hear us.

God the Father in heaven,
have mercy.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world,
have mercy.
God the Holy Spirit,
have mercy.

Be gracious to us.
Spare us, good Lord.
Be gracious to us.
Help us, good Lord.

From all sin, from all error, from all evil;
From the crafts and assaults of the devil; from sudden and evil death;
From pestilence and famine; from war and bloodshed; from sedition and from rebellion;
From lightning and tempest; from all calamity by fire and water; and from everlasting death:
Good Lord, deliver us.

By the mystery of Your holy incarnation; by Your holy nativity;
By Your Baptism, fasting, and temptation; by Your agony and bloody sweat; by Your cross and passion; by Your precious death and burial;
By Your glorious resurrection and ascension; and by the coming of the Holy Spirit, the Comforter:
Help us, good Lord.

In all time of our tribulation; in all time of our prosperity; in the hour of death; and in the Day of Judgment:
Help us, good Lord.

We poor sinners implore You
to hear us, O Lord.

To rule and govern Your holy Christian Church; to preserve all pastors and ministers of Your Church in the true knowledge and understanding of Your wholesome Word and to sustain them in holy living;
To put an end to all schisms and causes of offense; to bring into the way of truth all who have erred and are deceived;
To beat down Satan under our feet; to send faithful laborers into Your harvest; and to accompany Your Word with Your grace and Spirit:
We implore You to hear us, good Lord.

To raise those who fall and to strengthen those who stand; and to comfort and help the weakhearted and the distressed:
We implore You to hear us, good Lord.

To give to all peoples concord and peace; to preserve our land from discord and strife; to give our country Your protection in every time of need;
To direct and defend our [president/queen/king] and all in authority; to bless and protect our magistrates and all our people;
To watch over and help all who are in danger, necessity, and tribulation; to protect and guide all who travel;
To grant all women with child, and all mothers with infant children, increasing happiness in their blessings; to defend all orphans and widows and provide for them;
To strengthen and keep all sick persons and young children; to free those in bondage; and to have mercy on us all:
We implore You to hear us, good Lord.

To forgive our enemies, persecutors, and slanderers and to turn their hearts; to give and preserve for our use the kindly fruits of the earth; and graciously to hear our prayers:
We implore You to hear us, good Lord.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God,
we implore You to hear us.

Christ, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world,
have mercy.
Christ, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world,
have mercy.
Christ, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world,
grant us Your peace.

O Christ,
hear us.

O Lord,
have mercy.
O Christ,
have mercy.
O Lord,
have mercy. Amen.


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 temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen.


Let us pray.
I thank You, my heavenly Father, through Jesus Christ, Your dear Son, that You have graciously kept me this day; and I pray that You would forgive me all my sins where I have done wrong, and graciously keep me this night. For into Your hands I commend myself, my body and soul, and all things. Let Your holy angel be with me, that the evil foe may have no power over me. Amen.


The blessing of almighty God, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit be and remain with you always.


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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