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Perfect Christmas

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Luke 2:1-20 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world.(This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.)And everyone went to their own town to register. So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David.He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born,and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them. And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified.10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good ne…

The spoilers are spoiled!

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John 1:1-14 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him everything was made, and without him not one thing was made that has been made. In him was life, and the life was the light of mankind. The light is shining in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. There was a man, sent from God, whose name was John. He came as an eyewitness to testify about the light so that everyone would believe through him. He was not the light, but he came to testify about the light. The real light that shines on everyone was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to what was his own, yet his own people did not accept him. 12 But to all who did receive him, to those who believe in his name, he gave the right to become children of God. 13 They were born, not of blood, or of the desire of the flesh, or of a husb…

From Heaven Above to Earth I Come

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There is a great deal of excitement this morning. Today is a bit different as we are celebrating the Eve of Christ’s birth in the morning. The children are excited to speak their memorized Bible verses and hymns. Parents are excited to see their children in the front of church sharing the Savior’s story. The children are excited because they think that after worship this morning, they’ll have more time to open and then play with their presents. Families are excited that they’ll be able to have more time to go to Grandpa and Grandma’s house this afternoon. You are excited to be able to come back to church this evening to sing all different Christmas hymns and hear a different Christmas message in our candlelight service. However, in the past, you probably weren’t all that excited to sing Martin Luther’s Christmas hymn, “From Heaven Above to Earth I Come.” My goodness, it has fifteen stanzas! That’s a good eight minutes for just one song! And yet, when you paid attention to the words of L…

Who are you?

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John 1:6-8, 19-28 6There was a man, sent from God, whose name was John. 7He came as an eyewitness to testify about the light so that everyone would believe through him. 8He was not the light, but he came to testify about the light. 19This is the testimony John gave when the Jews from Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to ask him, “Who are you?” 20He confessed and did not deny. He confessed, “I am not the Christ.” 21And they asked him, “Who are you then? Are you Elijah?” He said, “I am not.” “Are you the Prophet?” “No,” he answered. 22Then they asked him, “Who are you? Tell us so we can give an answer to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?” 23He said, “I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way of the Lord,’ just as Isaiah the prophet said.” 24They had been sent from the Pharisees. 25So they asked John, “Why then do you baptize, if you are not the Christ, or Elijah, or the Prophet?” 26“I baptize with water,” John answered. “Among you stand…

Are you REALLY ready for Christmas?

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Mark 1: 1-8The Second Sunday in Advent – (Year B 2017) Epiphany Lutheran Church, Racine WI                                                                                      Rev. Kevin Hundley

So, have you been asked THE Question? At this time of year, conversations usually turn to THE Question, “So, are you ready for Christmas?” That’s code for “how well have you checked off the Christmas TO Do list?”
Some call this the season of giving. But really, it’s the season of DOING. Have you put up lights? Have you decorated a tree? Have you done the shopping, the cooking, the baking the Christmas card making? The clock is ticking you know. Two weeks and then the big event is here. So, are you READY?
If we aren’t careful, this time of year can fill us with anxiety and guilt instead of peace and hope. And if that’s the case Christian, you are missing the purpose of Advent. Advent is a time when we prepare for Jesus coming. So, for a few moments this morning relax. Put aside the to-do list. Beca…

Worship Helps for Advent 3

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Art: The Preaching of St. John the Baptist Artist: Francesco Bacchiacca
Worship Theme: Most people don’t want the Savior who promised to come. Do you?  The Third Sunday of Advent is called Gaudete, a Latin word that means “rejoice.” The rose candle is lit to emphasize this theme of joy. It is a glimmer of gladness in an otherwise more solemn season. 
Prayer of the Day: Hear our prayers, Lord Jesus Christ, and come with the good news of your mighty deliverance.  Drive the darkness from our hearts and fill us with your light; for you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.
Old Testament: Malachi 4:1-6 Look! The day is coming, burning like a blast furnace. All the arrogant and every evildoer will be stubble. The day that is coming will set them on fire, says the Lord of Armies, a day which will not leave behind a root or branch for them. 2But for you who fear my name, the sun of righteousness will rise, and there will be healing in its wings. You will go …