The First Sunday After Epiphany

  1. Pouring out the kindness and love of God
  2. Renewing us for eternal life
SERMON TEXT:  Titus 3:4-7

But when the kindness and love of God our Savior toward mankind appeared, he saved us—not by righteous works that we did ourselves, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and the renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs in keeping with the hope of eternal life.

Bible Readings

FIRST LESSON:  1 Samuel 16:1-13

The LORD said to Samuel, “How long will you mourn for Saul, since I have rejected him as king over Israel? Fill your horn with oil and go. I am sending you to Jesse of Bethlehem, for I see a king for myself among his sons.” Samuel said, “How can I go? If Saul hears about it, he will kill me.” The LORD said, “Take a heifer with you and say, ‘I have come to sacrifice to the LORD.’ Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will let you know what you are to do. You are to anoint for me the person that I point out to you.” So Samuel did what the LORD had told him to do and went to Bethlehem. Trembling with fear, the elders of the city came to meet him. They said, “Do you come in peace?” He said, “Yes, in peace. I have come to sacrifice to the LORD. Consecrate yourselves, and come with me to the sacrifice.” He consecrated Jesse and his sons and invited them to the sacrifice. When they had come, he looked at Eliab and said, “Certainly this is the LORD’s anointed.” But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at how tall he is, because I have rejected him. For the LORD does not look at things the way man does. For man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.” Then Jesse called Abinadab and had him pass in front of Samuel. But Samuel said, “The LORD has not chosen this one either.” Then Jesse had Shammah pass by. But Samuel said, “The LORD has not chosen this one either.” Jesse had seven of his sons pass before Samuel. Samuel said to Jesse, “The LORD has not chosen any of these.” Samuel said to Jesse, “Is that all of the young men?” Jesse said, “There still is the youngest, but he is tending the sheep.” Samuel said to Jesse, “Send for him, for we cannot sit down to eat until he comes.” He sent for him and brought him in. David had red hair and striking eyes, and was good-looking. The LORD said, “Get up! Anoint him, because this is the one.” So Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the presence of his brothers. The Spirit of the LORD rushed on David with power from that day forward. After that Samuel set out and returned to Ramah.

SECOND LESSON:  Titus 3:4-7

See Sermon Text

VERSE OF THE DAY:  Luke 3:22b

You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased

GOSPEL: Luke 3:15-17, 21-22

The people were waiting expectantly and were all wondering in their hearts if John could be the Christ. John answered them all, “I baptize you with water. But someone mightier than I is coming. I am not worthy to untie the strap of his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing shovel is in his hand, and he will thoroughly clean out his threshing floor. He will gather the wheat into his barn, but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.” When all the people were being baptized, Jesus was baptized too. While he was praying, heaven was opened, and the Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love. I am well pleased with you.”