Sixth Sunday after Pentecost

SERMON TEXT:  Galatians 5:1, 13-25

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not allow anyone to put the yoke of slavery on you again. After all, brothers, you were called to freedom. Only do not use your freedom as a starting point for your sinful flesh. Rather, serve one another through love. In fact, the whole law is summed up in this one statement: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” But if you keep on biting and devouring one another, watch out that you are not consumed by one another. What I am saying is this: Walk by the spirit, and you will not carry out what the sinful flesh desires. For the sinful flesh desires what is contrary to the spirit, and the spirit what is contrary to the sinful flesh. In fact, these two continually oppose one another, so that you do not continue to do these things you want to do. But if you are led by the spirit, you are not under the control of the law. Now the works of the sinful flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity, complete lack of restraint, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, discord, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, orgies, and things similar to these. I warn you, just as I also warned you before, that those who continue to do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the spirit, let us also walk in step with it.

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Bible Readings

FIRST LESSON:  1 Kings 19:14-21

He said, “I have been very zealous for the LORD, the God of Armies, but the people of Israel have abandoned your covenant. They have torn down your altars and killed your prophets with the sword. I alone am left, and they are seeking to take my life.”
Then the LORD said to him, “Go back the way you came and go to the Wilderness of Damascus. When you get there, you are to anoint Hazael as king over Aram. You will also anoint Jehu son of Nimshi as king over Israel and Elisha son of Shaphat from Abel Meholah as prophet in your place. Whoever escapes the sword of Hazael, Jehu will kill, and whoever escapes the sword of Jehu, Elisha will kill. But I have preserved in Israel seven thousand whose knees have not bent to Baal and whose lips have not kissed him.”
So Elijah went from there and found Elisha son of Shaphat. Elisha was doing the plowing with twelve teams of oxen in front of him, and he himself was driving the twelfth team. Elijah crossed over to him and threw his cloak over him. Then Elisha left the oxen and ran after Elijah. He said, “Let me kiss my father and my mother good-bye! Then I will follow you.”
Then Elijah said, “Go back! For what have I done to you?”
So Elisha turned back from following him. Then he took the team of oxen and slaughtered them. Using the equipment from the oxen as fuel, he cooked the meat and gave it to the people, and they ate. Then he got up, followed Elijah, and served him.

SECOND LESSON:  Galatians 5:1, 13-25

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VERSE OF THE DAY:  Luke 9:23

If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.

GOSPEL: Luke 9:51-62

When the days were approaching for him to be taken up, Jesus was determined to go to Jerusalem. He sent messengers ahead of him. They went and entered a Samaritan village to make preparations for him. But the people did not welcome him, because he was determined to go to Jerusalem. When his disciples James and John saw this, they said, “Lord, do you want us to call down fire from heaven to consume them?” But he turned and rebuked them. “You don’t know what kind of spirit is influencing you. For the Son of Man did not come to destroy people’s souls, but to save them.” Then they went to another village. As they went on the way, a man said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.” He said to another man, “Follow me!” But he said, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.” Jesus told him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” Another man also said, “I will follow you, Lord, but first let me say good-bye to those at my home.” Jesus told him, “No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.”