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your love never fails, and you can turn the shadow of death into daybreak.
Help us to receive your word with believing hearts, so that, confident in your promises,
we may have hope and be lifted out of sorrow into the joy and peace of your presence;
through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.
31 When Moses had finished speaking all these words to all Israel, 2 he said to them: “I am now one hundred twenty years old. I am no longer able to get about, and the Lord has told me, ‘You shall not cross over this Jordan.’ 3 The Lord your God himself will cross over before you. He will destroy these nations before you, and you shall dispossess them. Joshua also will cross over before you, as the Lord promised. 4 The Lord will do to them as he did to Sihon and Og, the kings of the Amorites, and to their land, when he destroyed them. 5 The Lord will give them over to you and you shall deal with them in full accord with the command that I have given to you. 6 Be strong and bold; have no fear or dread of them, because it is the Lord your God who goes with you; he will not fail you or forsake you.”
7 Then Moses summoned Joshua and said to him in the sight of all Israel: “Be strong and bold, for you are the one who will go with this people into the land that the Lord has sworn to their ancestors to give them; and you will put them in possession of it. 8 It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.”
9 Then Moses wrote down this law, and gave it to the priests, the sons of Levi, who carried the ark of the covenant of the Lord, and to all the elders of Israel. 10 Moses commanded them: “Every seventh year, in the scheduled year of remission, during the festival of booths, 11 when all Israel comes to appear before the Lord your God at the place that he will choose, you shall read this law before all Israel in their hearing. 12 Assemble the people—men, women, and children, as well as the aliens residing in your towns—so that they may hear and learn to fear the Lord your God and to observe diligently all the words of this law, 13 and so that their children, who have not known it, may hear and learn to fear the Lord your God, as long as you live in the land that you are crossing over the Jordan to possess.”
1 The Lord is king, he is robed in majesty;
the Lord is robed, he is girded with strength.
He has established the world; it shall never be moved;
2 your throne is established from of old;
you are from everlasting.
3 The floods have lifted up, O Lord,
the floods have lifted up their voice;
the floods lift up their roaring.
4 More majestic than the thunders of mighty waters,
more majestic than the waves of the sea,
majestic on high is the Lord!
5 Your decrees are very sure;
holiness befits your house,
O Lord, forevermore.
Gospel Reading:Mark 10:46-52
46 They came to Jericho. As he and his disciples and a large crowd were leaving Jericho, Bartimaeus son of Timaeus, a blind beggar, was sitting by the roadside. 47 When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”
48 Many sternly ordered him to be quiet, but he cried out even more loudly,
“Son of David, have mercy on me!”
49 Jesus stood still and said, “Call him here.” And they called the blind man, saying to him,
“Take heart; get up, he is calling you.”
50 So throwing off his cloak, he sprang up and came to Jesus. 51 Then Jesus said to him, “What do you want me to do for you?”
The blind man said to him, “My teacher, let me see again.”
52 Jesus said to him, “Go; your faith has made you well.”
Immediately he regained his sight and followed him on the way.
Reflecting on Hope
Bartimaeus was a person who knew firsthand the awesome power of Jesus after he was brought from a life of blindness to sight. I imagine him, then, being an optimistic visionary in the days after Jesus death, bringing abundant joy to all, borne out of the knowledge of his own despair turned to joy.
In this era of Coronavirus, who has been a has been a person who has brought you joy or hopeful vision for the future?
Write down your answers, and – if you’d like – share them with others. If you’re willing to share your responses during worship on Wednesday evening, that would be great.
Be our light in the darkness,
O God, and in your great mercy defend us from all perils and dangers;
for the love of your only Son, our Savior Jesus Christ.