Preparing for Worship – The Last Sunday of the Church Year – 11/24/2019

This Week’s Scripture Lessons

Psalm: Psalm 149
Old Testament: Isaiah 65:17-25
Gospel: Matthew 25:1-13
Epistle: 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11

Explanation of the Week

“The day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night” (1 Thess 5:1-11). The arrival of the bridegroom will be sudden and unexpected. Therefore you are to be watchful and ready like the five wise virgins. “For you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming” (Matt 25:1-13). The lamps are the Word of Christ. The oil in the lamps is the Holy Spirit, who works through the Word to create and sustain the flame of faith in Christ. The foolish are those who do not give proper attention to the working of the Holy Spirit in baptism, preaching, and the supper, and so their faith does not endure. The wise, however, are those who diligently attend to these gifts of the Spirit, and who therefore have an abundance of oil. The flame of faith endures to the end. By God’s grace they are received into the eternal wedding feast of the Lamb in His kingdom, the new heavens and the new earth created by the Lord for the joy of His people (Is 65:17-25).

From the Pastor’s Study

As we approach the end of the Christian Church Calendar this week, our focus shifts to the end of this age. Christ was inaugurated as King of the Jews by the Romans on Good Friday and Christ’s kingdom will be consummated and visible to all the nations when he returns again.

What will that day be like?

There is a strong curiosity amongst Christians concerning the end times. This curiosity is not limited to Christians, however, Christians have certain knowledge when it comes to the events surrounding the end.

One thing we know is that we don’t know when it will be here. There are indicators to look for, the birth pangs of the end and signs of the end that Jesus mentions in Matthew 24. However, these do not necessarily say, “The time is this hour,” in as much as it they say, “The end is certain.”

I have always been interested in what Paul wrote concerning the end in 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11, which is our sermon text this Sunday. Talking about when Christ will return, Paul says, “The day of the Lord will come just like a thief in the night.” When you place that next to the manner in which Christ will come from Matthew 24:31, “And he will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call…” it ends up sounding pretty awesome.

The question when we think about these type of things ultimately comes down to, “So what?” This is a part of what Paul is addressing in 1 Thessalonians. I look forward to meditating upon this Word with you this week.


The best part about this Sunday, musically, is that we will be hearing the Sunday School Choir sing following the congregational prayer.

However, this Sunday, we’ll also be singing two of my favorite hymns: Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence and Lift Up Your Heads, Ye Mighty Gates. Take a listen to them on the Spotify playlist below.

We’ll also be singing The Lion and the Lamb, Come People of the Risen King, and All Hail King Jesus.

May Christ Bless you this week as you seek His face in His Word.