Worship Companion – September 5 2021

We’ve wrapped up our summer sermon series “We the Church.” Where does the time go? Yet we are called to keep walking in lock-step with Jesus every day, so let’s carry on into a new adventure! For us, that going to include a short series in September called the “September Survey.” 

Wikimedia Commons

We’re going to be surveying the landscape of the Scriptures, in the Gospels, the Psalms, the history of the Old Testament and the Letters of the New Testament. This week, we begin with a look at “Freedom,” specifically, the freedom Christ has brought us, in unexpected and surprising ways. 
Anchor Texts:
New Testament: Acts 7:24-37
Old Testament: Isaiah 35:4-7
Preparation for Worship:
Most Holy God, we bow down in reverence to you. We humbly acknowledge you to be the Lord of all creation, and our personal master. In You we find our rest, and we confess our need to rest from our labours, both good and ill. We confess we have done this week things which we ought not to have done, and we lay the moments of disobedience at your feet and humble ask for forgiveness. Heal us, and heal our families, and indeed our whole land, for you are the Great Physician, and you do all things well. This we pray, through Jesus Christ. Amen.
Jesus desired to find a quiet place in Mark 7:24 – why does he need this time, and what does this tell you about the life of following Jesus?
Was what Jesus said to the Syrophoenician woman offensive or not? Why do you think so?
Our theme this Sunday is Freedom, in what ways did Jesus set the deaf/mute man free (think physical, social, and spiritual)?
The Theme in Song:
In these two anchor passages for this week we are reminded that our God is the one who has done and will do “Great Things,” which this song reminds us of so well.

The Theme in Art:
In these two pieces of art from ca. 1500 and 1400 respectively, there are several differences in the portrayal of Jesus and the Syrophoenician woman. In the first, it is a single depiction of Jesu turning back toward the woman who begs for the life of her daughter. In the second, (a illumination, or image from an old Latin text of the Bible) a slightly bolder approach is taking, as the artist, Limbourg, dares to paint Jesus in the act of turning away in the more prominent panel, with a smaller, secondary image of the turn-of-compassion to the woman that the story ends with. Why do you think the second author chose to include two scenes, and why make the “rejection” the larger one?
Title: The Canaanite Woman asks for healing for her daughter
[Click for larger image view]

Title: The Canaanite Woman asks for healing for her daughter Date: ca. 1500 Artist: Juan, de Flandes, approximately 1465-1519

Title: The Canaanite Woman asks for healing for her daughter
[Click for smaller image view]

Limbourg, Herman de, approximately 1385-approximately

The Theme for Kids:
Some of you may have heard my rant about how good the movie “the Gospel of John” by the Lumo project was. Well they have also released a “Gospel of Mark” which is equally excellent. This short clip is or everyone, kids included. It depicts the beauty and the strangeness of this particular healing so well. Mark 7 is indeed, in many ways, a very strange chapter!


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