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Third Sunday of Easter

April 18, 2021

Confession and Forgiveness

Blessed be the holy Trinity,  one God,
who forgives all our sin,
whose mercy endures forever.
God of all mercy and consolation, come to the help of your people, turning us from our sin to live for you alone. Give us the power of your Holy Spirit that we may confess our sin, receive your forgiveness, and grow into the fullness of Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.
Gracious God,
have mercy on us. We confess that we have turned from you and given ourselves into the power of sin. We are truly sorry and humbly repent. In your compassion forgive us our sins, known and unknown, things we have done and things we have failed to do. Turn us again to you, and uphold us by your Spirit, so that we may live and serve you in newness of life through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.
God, who is rich in mercy, loved us even when we were dead in sin, and made us alive together with Christ. By grace you have been saved. In the name of  Jesus Christ, your sins are forgiven. Almighty God strengthen you with power through the Holy Spirit, that Christ may live in your hearts through faith.

Prayer of the Day

Holy and righteous God,
you are the author of life,
and you adopt us to be your children.
Fill us with your words of life,
that we may live as witnesses to the resurrection of your Son,
Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.

Acts 4:32-35

32Now the whole group of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one claimed private ownership of any possessions, but everything they owned was held in common. 33With great power the apostles gave their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all. 34There was not a needy person among them, for as many owned lands or houses sold them, and brought the proceeds of what was sold. 35They laid it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need.

Psalm 4

 1Answer me when I call, O God, defender of my cause;
  you set me free when I was in distress; have mercy on me and hear my prayer.
 2“You mortals, how long will you dishonor my glory;
  how long will you love illusions and seek after lies?”
 3Know that the Lord does wonders for the faithful;
  the Lord will hear me when I call.
 4Tremble, then, and do not sin;
  speak to your heart in silence upon your bed.
 5Offer the appointed sacrifices,
  and put your trust in the Lord.
 6Many are saying, “Who will show us any good?”
  Let the light of your face shine upon us, O Lord.
 7You have put gladness in my heart,
  more than when grain and wine abound.
 8In peace, I will lie down and sleep;
  for you alone, O Lord, make me rest secure.

1 John 3:1-7

1See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and that is what we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know God. 2Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed. What we do know is this: when it is revealed, we will be like God, for we will see God as God is. 3And all who have this hope in God purify themselves, just as the Son is pure.
  4Everyone who commits sin is guilty of lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. 5You know that Christ was revealed to take away sins, and in him there is no sin. 6No one who abides in the Son sins; no one who sins has either seen or known the Son. 7Little children, let no one deceive you. Everyone who does what is right is righteous, just as Christ is righteous.

Gospel Reading: Luke 24:36b-48

36bJesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” 37They were startled and terrified, and thought that they were seeing a ghost. 38He said to them, “Why are you frightened, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? 39Look at my hands and my feet; see that it is I myself. Touch me and see; for a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.” 40And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. 41While in their joy they were disbelieving and still wondering, he said to them, ‘Have you anything here to eat?’ 42They gave him a piece of broiled fish, 43and he took it and ate in their presence.
  44Then Jesus said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you—that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled.” 45Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, 46and said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day, 47and that repentance and forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. 48You are witnesses of these things.”

Prayers of Intercession

Alive in the risen Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit, we bring our prayers before God who promises to hear us and answer in steadfast love.

Hover your cursor over each prayer as you’re ready.

Living God, in the midst of Easter joy we are still filled with questions and wondering.

Open our hearts and minds as we encounter the scriptures, so that the church embodies repentance and forgiveness in the name of Jesus to all nations.

Hear us, O God.
Your mercy is great.

Creating God, like a master artist you have fashioned the universe out of your love and delight.

Heal your creation where it is in need of restoration. Provide all the inhabitants of earth a peaceful and sustainable home.

Hear us, O God.
Your mercy is great.

God of all, the nations hunger and thirst for your righteousness.

Many call on you for guidance and strength. Answer their hopes with the peace of Christ and give your lovingkindness to national, state, and local leaders of people.

Hear us, O God.
Your mercy is great.

Healing God, you hear the cries of those in need and answer them in their distress.

Grant to those who are sick and suffering your compassion and nurse them back to health and wholeness. Be close to the hearts of the lonely.

Hear us, O God.
Your mercy is great.

Loving Parent, you have given us such love that we should be called the children of God.

Reveal yourself to us so that we in this community of faith will become more and more like you in our mutual love and bold witness.

Hear us, O God.
Your mercy is great.

God of all times and ages, those who have died in you now see you as you are.

We thank you for their lives among us. Assure us of the peace you have promised, that we may join them in everlasting life. Hear us,

Hear us, O God.
Your mercy is great.

In the hope of new life in Christ, we raise our prayers to you, trusting in your never-ending goodness and mercy; through Jesus Christ our Lord.


Offering Prayer

God of love,
you call us beloved children and welcome us to your table.
Receive our lives and the gifts we offer.
Abide with us and send us in service to a suffering world;
for the sake of your beloved Child, Jesus Christ.




May our glorious God grant you a spirit of wisdom
to know and to love the risen Lord Jesus.
The God of life,
Father, ☩ Son, and Holy Spirit,
bless you now and forever.

Liturgy text and NRSV Bible Readings From Sundays and Copyright 2021 Augsburg Fortress. All rights reserved. Reprinted by permission under Augsburg Fortress Liturgies Annual License #SAS103558
Heart of the Community, Original source:
King David, Peter Paul Rubens, 1577-1640. 
Come Unto Me, Little Children, Johnson, William H., 1901-1970. Original source:
Jesus Welcomes All, Unidentified Sudanese artist. Original source: – photographer identified as Amy the Nurse.
from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN.