Like a Tree

Like a Tree

Sermon……………………………………………………Psalm 1:1-3

“Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly,
Nor stands in the path of sinners,
Nor sits in the seat of the scornful;
But his delight is in the law of the LORD, 

And in His law he meditates day and night.

He shall be like a tree
Planted by the rivers of water,
That brings forth its fruit in its season,
Whose leaf also shall not wither,
And whatever he does shall prosper.”

“Like a Tree”

Listen to the sermon:

Psalm 1:1 Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, delight is in the law of the LORD

Fifth Sunday After Epiphany

Sunday, February 9, 2014 (9:00 a.m.)

Song by Choir – “I Am Your Servant, O Lord” (Soloist: Matt Thurow)

 (Director: Cathy Augustin; Accompanist: Ryan Augustin)

Opening  TLH 359 : Christ, Whose Glory Fills the Sky Hymnary.org link

The Invocation and Confessional Prayer

The Scripture Reading – John 15: 1-8

The life, health, vitality and productivity of every tree and plant is dependent on its root system and the nutrition it receives and shares. It is no different with our life, health and productivity as spiritual branches totally dependent on Jesus.

The Apostles Creed (Page 12 in Hymnal)

The “Te Deum” (We Praise You, O God”) – Hymnal, Pages 35-37

Sermon……………………………………………………Psalm 1:1-3

“Like a Tree”

Thoughts based on Psalm 1:1-3

“Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly,
Nor stands in the path of sinners,
Nor sits in the seat of the scornful;
But his delight is in the law of the LORD,

And in His law he meditates day and night.

He shall be like a tree
Planted by the rivers of water,
That brings forth its fruit in its season,
Whose leaf also shall not wither,
And whatever he does shall prosper.”

Psalm 1 says that just as a good gardener cares for a precious, green tree,
So the Lord would protect and bless me, His dear, redeemed child!

He would protect me from:

The foolish advice of the “worldly wise”
Walking in “the counsel of the ungodly”

Destructive associations with those who willfully transgress God’s will
Standing in “the path of sinners”

The embrace of those who despise and disparage my Savior, Jesus
Sitting in “the seat of the scornful”

How?

By feeding me spiritually with His Word, so that my heart’s delight
“is in the law of the LORD, and in His law (His Word) I meditate “day and night.”

“Come now, and let us reason together,”
Says the LORD,
“Though your sins are like scarlet,
They shall be white as snow;
Though they are red like crimson,
They shall be as wool.”

[Isaiah 1:18]

“Your Word is a lamp unto my feet
And a light unto my path.”

[Psalm 119:105]

Lord, help me to:

Read        Your Word daily

Hear        Your Word regularly

Carry      Your Word always in my mind and heart

Treasure                                my church, where I gather with others to hear Your Word taught in truth and purity

Share                                     Your Word with others as You give me opportunity

TLH 414 (v 1-3): The Man is Ever Blest Hymnary.org link

1. The man is ever blest Who shuns the sinners’ ways,
Among their counsels never stands, Nor takes the scorners’ place.

2. But makes the Law of God His study and delight
Amid the labors of the day And watches of the night.

3. He like a tree shall thrive, With waters near the root;
Fresh as the leaf his name shall live, His works are heavenly fruit.

In what ways am I blessed
when my delight is in God’s Word?

Am I blessed with:

  • Permanence? – Absolutely!

“He shall be like a tree planted

I’m not a wild tree with an uncertain future, but a tree chosen, planted, cultivated and completely secure in the Day of Judgment:

“Every plant which my heavenly Father has not planted will be uprooted.” [Matthew 15:13]

  • My Postion? – Highly favored!

“…by the rivers of water”

I drink daily from the life-giving rivers of pardon and peace through Christ, Who died and rose again for me!

  • Am I Productive? – Very!

“bringing forth fruit in its season”

As I delight in and am taught by God’s Word, I naturally bring forth fruits in my life, such as:

Patience in times of suffering

Faith in the day of trial

Holy joy in times of prosperity

“He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit, for without Me you can do nothing.” [John 15:5]

TLH 411 (v 4-6): From Eternity, O God Hymnary.org link

4. Oh, create a heart in me That in Thee, my God, believeth
And o’er the iniquity Of my sins most truly grieveth.
When dark hours of woe betide me, In the wounds of Jesus hide me.

5. As a branch upon a vine In my blessed Lord implant me;
Ever of my Head divine To remain a member grant me.
Oh, let Him, my Lord and Savior, Be my Life and Love forever!

6. Faith and hope and charity Graciously, O Father, give me;
Be my Guardian constantly That the devil may not grieve me;
Grant me humbleness and gladness, Peace and patience in my sadness.

  • What about Prosperity? – Guaranteed!

“Whose leaf also shall not wither, and whatever he does shall prosper.”

God truly prospers me in every way imaginable!

It is not material or outward prosperity, however, which I as a Christian most desire and value.

It is my soul’s prosperity for which I long, and which I am freely granted by the Spirit through the Gospel!

How Blest Am I, How Good Thou Art!

Prayer:

C: Dear Heavenly Father, keep me strong in my faith and in a loving relationship with You through the Word of Life. Help me to always appreciate my favored, permanent position as one of Your trees “planted by the rivers of water.” Help me to bring to others the good news of salvation and peace with God through the Lord Jesus Christ. Send me Your Holy Spirit and bless me with every good and perfect gift. I bless Your Holy name. Amen.

TLH 436 : The Lord's My Shepherd Hymnary.org link

1. The Lord’s my Shepherd, I’ll not want; He makes me down to lie
In pastures green; He leadeth me The quiet waters by.

2. My soul He doth restore again And me to walk doth make
Within the paths of righteousness, E’en for His own name’s sake.

3. Yea, tho’ I walk in death’s dark vale, Yet will I fear no ill;
For Thou art with me, and Thy rod And staff me comfort still.

4. My table Thou hast furnished In presence of my foes;
My head Thou dost with oil anoint, And my cup overflows.

5. Goodness and mercy, all my life, Shall surely follow me;
And in God’s house forevermore My dwelling place shall be.

Our Stewardship “Fruits” Produced By And For Jesus

Our Prayer And The Lord’s Prayer

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.

Benediction ♫ Amen

Closing TLH 343 (V 1, 3 & 6): How Lovely Shines the Morning Star Hymnary.org link

1. How lovely shines the Morning Star! The nations see and hail afar
The light in Judah shining. Thou David’s Son of Jacob’s race,
My Bridegroom and my King of Grace, For Thee my heart is pining.
Lowly, Holy, Great and glorious, Thou victorious
Prince of graces, Filling all the heavenly places.

3. Now richly to my waiting heart, O Thou, my God, deign to impart
The grace of love undying. In Thy blest body let me be,
E’en as the branch is in the tree, Thy life my life supplying.
Sighing, Crying. For the savor Of Thy favor;
Resting never, Till I rest in Thee forever.

6. Lift up the voice and strike the string. Let all glad sounds of music ring
In God’s high praises blended. Christ will be with me all the way,
Today, tomorrow, every day, Till traveling days be ended.
Sing out, Ring out Triumph glorious, O victorious,
Chosen nation; Praise the God of your salvation.

Silent Prayer and Announcements