Sunday, March 25, 2007

Fourth Sunday in Lent

The Lord provided bread from heaven for His people in the wilderness. (Ex 16:2-21) Now He who is Himself the Living Bread from heaven miraculously provides bread for the 5000. (Jn 6:1-15) This takes place near the time of the Passover, after a great multitude followed Jesus across the Sea, when He went up on a mountain. Thus we see that Jesus is our new and greater Moses, who releases us from the bondage of Mt. Sinai and makes us free children of the promise. (Gal 4:21-31) Five loaves become twelve baskets, that is, the five books of Moses find their goal and fulfillment in Christ, whose people continue steadfastly in the doctrine and fellowship of the twelve apostles, and in the breaking and receiving of the Bread of Life, which is the body of Christ together with His precious blood, and in the prayers. (Acts 2:41-47) So it is that God's people "shall neither hunger nor thirst." (Is 49:8-13) For He abundantly provides for them in both body and soul

* Psalm 132:8-18 (ESV)
* Exodus 16:2-21 (ESV)
* Acts 2:41-47 (ESV)
* St. Luke 11:14-28 (ESV)

Hymn of the Day
* LSB 743 "Jesus, Priceless Treasure"

Other Hymns
* LSB 423 "Jesus, Refuge of the Weary"
* LSB 642 "O Living Bread from Heaven"
* LSB 622 "Lord Jesus Christ You Have Prepared"
* LSB 420 "Christ, the Life of All the Living"

A Book of Concord Reading for Laetare
God Provides
Our Lord provides His people with all that they need to support this body and life. From the Large Catechism on the Fourth Petition of the Lord's Prayer:
80] But this petition is especially directed also against our chief enemy, the devil. For all his thought and desire is to deprive us of all that we have from God, or to hinder it; and he is not satisfied to obstruct and destroy spiritual government in leading souls astray by his lies and bringing them under his power, but he also prevents and hinders the stability of all government and honorable, peaceable relations on earth. There he causes so much contention, murder, sedition, and war, also lightning and hail to destroy grain and cattle, to poison the air, etc. 81] In short, he is sorry that any one has a morsel of bread from God and eats it in peace; and if it were in his power, and our prayer (next to God) did not prevent him, we would not keep a straw in the field, a farthing in the house, yea, not even our life for an hour, especially those who have the Word of God and would like to be Christians.
82] Behold, thus God wishes to indicate to us how He cares for us in all our need, and faithfully provides also for our temporal support. 83] And although He abundantly grants and preserves these things even to the wicked and knaves, yet He wishes that we pray for them, in order that we may recognize that we receive them from His hand, and may feel His paternal goodness toward us therein. For when He withdraws His hand, nothing can prosper nor be maintained in the end, as, indeed, we daily see and experience. 84] How much trouble there is now in the world only on account of bad coin, yea, on account of daily oppression and raising of prices in common trade, bargaining and labor on the part of those who wantonly oppress the poor and deprive them of their daily bread! This we must suffer indeed; but let them take care that they do not lose the common intercession, and beware lest this petition in the Lord's Prayer be against them.
All Book of Concord quotations are taken from the Triglotta, copyright 1921 by CPH. It is in public domain.

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