The Eighth Sunday   After the Festival of the Holy Trinity

The Tenth Sunday of the Pentecost Season

August 07, 2022

(For the Biblical support for what follows, refer to

For those interested in studying what the Scriptures teach about Baptism” found later in this worship flyer)

The Doctrine of Baptism and its Significance for all of us

            Baptism, without a doubt, is one of Christianity’s most precious “gifts” from God.  It possess extraordinary power and provides blessings that go beyond what we see in the ceremony/activity of Baptism.   It is a “Means of Grace” by which God the Holy Spirit, in His mercy, applies the benefits of the redemptive work of Christ to the person being baptized.  

            As we continue our summer/fall 2022 worship and sermon series on Paul’s letter to the Galatians, this morning Paul speaks about the assurance and heavenly inheritance we have through the Sacrament of Baptism.   Along with the Lord’s Supper, and the written Word of God, Baptism assures us, through Jesus’ sinless life, sacrificial death, and glorious resurrection, that curse of our sins has been removed (eternal death in hell); our sins have been fully, freely forgiven; and eternal salvation in heaven is ours through faith in Christ, our Savior.  Consequently there is absolutely NOTHING further that God requires (from us) for our salvation – other than that we believe in what Christ, our Savior, accomplished to save us.

            Getting back to Baptism, in particular,….in many church bodies, Baptism is viewed as an “ordinance” – something God has commanded us to perform, and which the obedient Christian wants to do.   In most of those churches, Baptism is only (and, unfortunately, incorrectly) offered only to individuals who have reached an “age of accountability” (or responsibility; a teaching, incidentally, which is found nowhere in Scripture)  – when the person recognizes his/her sin and is able to publicly declare both the willingness to repent of sin and the desire to be baptized as a sign of commitment/faithfulness to Christ.  In these churches, the “activity” of the individual being baptized is considered the chief part of Baptism.   God’s activity is seen in the furnishing of the ordinance/command that the individual is satisfying.

            Along with the Lord’s Supper, in our church body we refer to Baptism not only as a “Means of Grace” (a means by which God establishes and strengthens/maintains saving faith in Christ), but also as a “Sacrament.”  The term Sacrament comes from the Latin language and is used in many church bodies to describe various special rites, ceremonies and symbols.   (The specific term “Sacrament” is not found anywhere in Scripture, but the concept is definitely there.)   In our church, we recognize two “Sacraments:”   Baptism and the Lord’s Supper.   By definition, a Sacrament is: 1) a sacred activity instituted by Christ;   2) through which God offers, gives and seals the forgiveness of sins, new life in Christ (faith) and eternal salvation;   and 3) manifest in an earthly element (in Baptism, water; in the Lord’s Supper, bread and win) which is connected to God’s Word.

            We believe (and Scripture teaches) that when the Sacrament of Baptism is employed the person being baptized plays – by far – the smaller of the two roles (God fulfilling the much larger and more important role).   From the recipient’s side the activity of baptism seems to be very brief and simple.   The individual is presented for baptism.   Water (in any manner – whether by sprinkling, pouring or immersing…..the amount/volume doesn’t matter)  is applied.    Most importantly, God’s Word (specifically, from Matthew 28:19, “I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”) has to be spoken, since it is the power of God in His Word that makes Baptism “efficacious”  (effective, spiritually beneficial to the individual).    And that’s it – as far as what the person being baptized does, and what we see and hear.  

            But just like the “tip” of an iceberg – the only part of the iceberg a person sees above water – is small compared to the substance of that iceberg which is unseen, beneath the surface of the water…..even so in the activity of baptism, the recipient’s role is like the “tip” of the iceberg:   noticeable, but small;   while the role the Lord plays is like the “substance’ of the iceberg – unseen beneath the surface, but massive by comparison to the “tip.”

            That “greater by far role” in Baptism – which the Lord graciously and powerfully fills – includes His conveying to us the following blessings/benefits;   (not in any priority)   First, His full and free forgiveness of all our sins – and the assurance that the curse of sin (eternal death in hell) has been satisfied through the death of Christ for us, as well as that eternal salvation is ours through faith in Christ (Acts 22:19….part of today’s Sermon text;   Acts 2:38-39;   and Mark 16:15-16).     Second, in Baptism God miraculously establishes faith in the hearts of infants and children presented for baptism (and yes, little children, even infants can believe – see Jesus’ testimony about this Matthew 18:1-10, esp v6 and Luke 18:15-17; also Matthew 28:19 and II Timothy 3:15), so that they are saved (Mark 16:15-16 and I Peter 3:21).    Third, He strengthens faith in those (typically adults) who already have been brought by the Holy Spirit to faith in Him (see Romans 6, today’s Epistle Lesson).     Next, God covers us with Christ’s righteousness, makes us members of His family of believers and empowers us to live godly lives for Him (Galatians 3:26-27; John 3:5,6; Titus 3:4-7).   

            Those blessings and benefits are certainly significant, aren’t they?   And God’s Word tells us they are available and freely given to every one of us!

            An honest, fair and faithful study of Scripture leads us to a clear, correct conclusion:   God has instituted Baptism not merely as an ordinance/law for some (adults and teens, generally) to fulfill, but as a Means of Grace by which He graciously works to establish and sustain faith….and Christian faithfulness in us, through His Baptismal assurance that – for Jesus’ sake – He has guaranteed us all (adults and children – even infants) pardon from our sins, peace with Him, and the promise of everlasting life in Paradise/heaven.

Some Insights into Today’s Scripture Lessons

            In today’s Gospel Lesson we find Jesus receiving the Holy Spirit’s anointing at His baptism.  That anointing – as well as the Father’s affirmation – both formally and publicly designating (or inaugurating) Him as the One Who was to take mankind’s place under God’s wrath as the Messiah, our righteous, sin-Substitute and Deliverer.  Beginning here, with His baptism, Jesus’ redemptive work is set in motion…..redemptive work that will extend through a three year public ministry and which will culminate ultimately in His crucifixion and resurrection for our salvation.   In requesting Baptism Jesus was serving as both our Substitute in righteousness (fulfilling God’s will for us….and God does want us to be baptized – adults and children, including infants!)  and our Substitute under God’s wrath (in His baptism, Jesus demonstrates that He is willing to not only identify with us sinners, but to be our Sin-Substitute…..something He would demonstrate even more fully on the Cross).

            This morning’s First Lesson is Luke’s God-inspired account of the Ethiopian Eunuch encountering the Evangelist Philip on the former’s journey home from time spent worshiping in Jerusalem.   A “Jew” by faith, the Eunuch initially didn’t believe in Christ as the Promised Messiah/Savior.   But as he rode along and tried to read from the book of Isaiah, he came to what we know as chapter 53 with its wonderful prophecy of the Suffering Servant – a prophecy he was unable to understand, until……    Until God sent him Philip to the Eunuch to teach him about Christ – which is precisely what Philip faithfully and thoroughly did.   Philip’s instruction in the Scriptures must have included a lesson on baptism and its necessity, since the Eunuch – once he saw some water nearby – asked Philip to baptize him….which Philip did.   Notice here the process that led to the Eunuch’s baptism….the same process we employ when preparing to baptize adults.   First Philip instructed him in God’s Word.   Faith in Christ was fostered and strengthened in his heart by the Holy Spirit.   That, in turn, led to an earnest desire on the Eunuch’s part (rather than being compelled to obey an ordinance/commandment) to be baptized.

            This morning’s Epistle Lesson speaks about the benefits of baptism for us by comparing Christian Baptism to two events in Christ’s life:  His death and His resurrection.   As Christ died and rose, so through Baptism, our old sinful nature is put to death and the new man (the believer) rises to lead a life that is God-pleasing.    Please also note that this portion of Scripture is quoted by Luther in the Fourth part of his lesson in the Small Catechism on baptism (the Catechism’s section on Baptism is included at the end of today’s bulletin).

            Under the theme, “God’s Gifts in Baptism….for Adults AND Children,” during our Children’s Lesson we’ll talk about our church’s baptismal font in the front of church (just to the right of the pulpit) and what happens there.   As we do, we’ll consider two verses from Peter’s Pentecost sermon in Acts 2 where the Apostle speaks to an audience that is mostly made up of adults, but which includes some children in it (just as our worshiping congregation today is made up mostly of adults, but has a number of youth…even babies….in it as well).   He urges everyone to repent (the term is used in its “broad” sense – “to believe”) and be baptized for the forgiveness of their sins…..a promise that was extended not only to the adults assembled before him, but to their children also.  Even so today, when we offer baptism, we certainly want any adults who have not been baptized to learn about Christ from God’s Word and be baptized [if you or your child(ren) haven’t been baptized, please speak with our pastor!], but we also offer baptism to children….including infants….for Baptism’s blessings and benefits are to be applied to everyone.

            Finally, as we noted earlier, today’s Sermon, is a continuation of our summer sermon/service series on Paul’s letter to the Galatians.  False teachers have infiltrated the Galatian churches, suggesting that the Gospel Paul had taught them was not enough….that, while faith in Christ was important for salvation, so were good works – and, in particular, obedience to the Old Testament Jewish religious laws.   That OT Law had a purpose, says Paul.  It was to serve as a chaperon/supervisor, pointing out peoples’ sin and its damnable effects, until the Savior came to free us from its control and threats.   Now that Christ has come we are all God’s children through faith in the Savior, having been baptized into both His death for our sins and His righteousness applied to us.  It’s Christ’s works that save us…..not our efforts, sincerity, obedience – or anything but Jesus ALONE.

For those interested in what the Scriptures teach about Baptism, especially Infant Baptism

            First, there’s a book Northwestern Publishing (NPH) produced called “Baptized into God’s Family.”   It’s in our church library.   It provides a good treatment of infant baptism.

            Second, two tracts were produced years ago but are still very good on the subject of infant baptism.    The first  is called “Why Baptize Children.”   A second tract is titled “You Owe it to Your Child.”    Both should be helpful.    Pastor can provide you with copies of them you.

            Third…..In  “Shepherd Under Christ” (a practical, pastoral theology book used at our seminary) pages 65-79 speak about the practice of infant baptism.  You can also ask the Pastor for a copy of those pages for your added personal study.

            In addition, you can look in the current NPH catechism from pages 305 to 325.   Plus, you can consult the “Book of Concord.”   There, in the Large Catechism, Martin Luther speaks extensively about infant baptism in the section on Baptism.    Another book you can use is called “A Summary of Christian Doctrine” by E.W.A. Koehler.  (It’s also in our church library.) On pages 202 through 212 the doctrine of baptism is thoroughly discussed.

            Fourth…..what follows are groupings of passages, under various headings, that touch the matter of baptizing infants (and/or adults), beginning with those parts of Scripture which address “original/inherited sin.”   This list is not the most comprehensive, but should “cover the bases” for you.  

            In most churches the need for infant baptism is not clearly seen (and is even denied)  because it is incorrectly presumed that infants and small children are not actually sinners.  Such churches additionally assume that children are not held “accountable” for their sins until an undefined time when they reach an age of “discernment” or “accountability.” It’s only at this point in their lives, so these churches teach, that youth are finally supposed to consciously understand their sin and their need for a Savior, plus personally desire that Savior for themselves.   Unfortunately this is a teaching that is built too much on the use of human reason, while avoiding what Scripture actually teaches and then distorting other passages of God’s Word in an effort to make them say things they don’t.   Simply put, the position they generally take on baptism (and other teachings, too) is that “it’s got to make ‘sense’ before I’ll believe it, and — to me — it doesn’t make sense that babies can believe.”   In addition, they teach that baptism cannot be administered unless and until the recipient “personally and publicly desires” to be baptized……a desire that a little child/infant cannot verbally express.

BABIES/CHILDREN ARE SINNERS….just as much as adults

Romans 6:23 (do babies die?   sure they do, even in the womb.    If Adam and Eve had NOT sinned, death would not have entered the world.   Death is an evidence of sin’s existence.    Babies die, because babies are sinners………by the way, if someone says “Well Jesus died and He wasn’t a sinner,”   You can respond by saying, “Yes, you’re right, He wasn’t a sinner, and yet He chose to become responsible for our sins and die for them.   (Isaiah 53:6 and  II Corinthians 5:19-21)

Psalm 51:5  (David, under inspiration…..and these are GOD’S words!….acknowledges that he was not only sinful “at birth,” he was a sinner from the time when he was conceived.   …..And don’t let anyone tell you that the “act” of conception [i.e., intercourse] is sinful, since the Lord gives the gift of sexual intimacy to married people, and so, in and of itself, it is not sinful; indeed, He blessed it in Eden — only the abuse of it is sinful!)

Romans 3:23-24  (the “all” includes everyone…, woman, child, adults, infants too)

Romans 5:12-21 (“all men” …..again is a reference to everyone, regardless of age…..the Greek word (anthropos……we get our word “anthropology” from it) refers to “mankind”/”humankind” NOT to males)

John 3:5,6 …..all people, including babies, need to be “born again”…… the statement “of water and the spirit” is a clear reference to baptism [Titus 3:5,6]……notice two other things here.   First the preposition “of” and then the conjunction “and.”   In the Greek there is only one preposition, upon which both words “water” and “spirit” depend.    The conjunction “and” ties together the two words “water” and “spirit” ….the sense here is that being born again of water and the spirit is one action/activity that occurs at the same time.  [Some churches incorrectly claim that Jesus is saying here that a man is first born of water (physical birth…’s “water” breaking) and then later on is born of the spirit (at the time of his/her conversion);   the original language Greek doesn’t really allow for that understanding.]


Matthew 28:19 (babies are certainly part of “all nations”…..after all, “When does a baby become a citizen of this country?”    Answer # 1…..”Surely at the time the child is born!”   [for example, many “aliens” come to this country to have their children born here;   at which point the children automatically are considered US citizens.]    Answer #2…..Even before they’re born   [consider this:   someone attacks a pregnant woman, who loses the unborn child in the attack, though mom survives.    What criminal charges are filed?   Among others, the charge of “manslaughter” because a PERSON has lost his/her life.   …….By the way, isn’t it almost schizophrenic that our country affords protection to a pre-born child as a person, yet at the same time calls the child/person a “fetus” and nonhuman so that it can be aborted? !!!!!])

Galatians 3:26,27  (all people need to become “sons” [children] of God……that, again, includes children/infants)

Acts 2:38-39 (“the promise…for you and your children” is the promise of forgiveness, a forgiveness which is clearly connected to “baptism”…….This is a good passage from which to point out that churches that don’t baptize children are clearly in violation of God’s Word)


…..(The “Means of Grace” [Baptism, the Lord’s Supper, and the Word of God] are the instruments through which the Holy Spirit establishes and strengthens faith in a person.   Our “conversion” [coming to faith] is all the Spirit’s doing.    He enables anyone…babies included….to believe.)

Ephesians 5:25,26 (it “cleanses” us of our sin;   and everyone is a sinner – remember Romans 3:23: “ALL have sinned”)

I Peter 3:21 b (the waters of the flood, upon which Noah and his family were saved as they rode in the ark are symbolic of the water in baptism which — when connected to the Word of God through which the Holy Spirit works — truly “saves” the recipient.   God’s gift of eternal salvation, therefore, is a MAJOR part of baptism.)

Titus 3:5,6  (the “washing of regeneration” is an obvious reference to “baptism”;     Notice here that the Holy Spirit is significantly involved in this washing, since through it He “renews” [another way of saying “born again”] us by imparting faith into a person’s heart….in the case of an infant/child…..or strengthening existing faith… the case of an adult)

Mark 16:16  (salvation, again, is connected to the act of baptism…….the fact that “whoever believes” is recorded before “and is baptized” does not mandate, as many reformed teachers suggest, that a person cannot be baptized unless/until that individual publicly declares his/her faith.    Ask this question…..”to whom is Mark writing?”   The answer?    “To adults.”   And, as with most of the incidents in the NT when the act of baptism is described, the majority of people being baptized — or in some cases, the individual being baptized — will be adults/an adult.    After all, even in our churches today, the majority of members are adults.)

Acts 22:16    (Baptism “washes away sin”.  This cleansing/forgiving part of baptism is a proof that Baptism is a Means of Grace [NOT the only means, but one of the Holy Spirit’s means for working and sustaining faith]  along with the spoken/read Word and the Lord’s Supper.  It serves as a means by which God conveys His forgiveness and the gift of faith to people)

Acts 2:38  (We referred to this earlier.  The two points of this passage to consider now are:  1) baptism conveys God’s forgiveness to the recipient;  and 2)  through baptism the gift of the Holy Spirit is given….and through the Holy Spirit’s activity faith is begun and is sustained/strengthened.)


 (not necessarily “to immerse”)

Mark 7:3,4……throughout this text the word “wash” is used.   In the Greek language the word which is primarily used for “wash” is “baptizein”  (some say “baptizo”).   In either case, it is the word that is often translated “baptize.”     Pay special attention to the NIV’s (and other translations’) footnote, which refers to “dining couches” being washed.    Those couches would be similar to one a psychiatrist might stereotypically use in his office, upon which the patient is supposed to rest while in counseling.     People in the days when Jesus walked on earth actually ate at formal dinners from similar devices.    The simple point we want to make is this:    Do you immerse a “couch,” or do you apply water to it when you wash/clean it?   You apply water.   In a similar way, when we wash our cars we surely don’t immerse them!     And when reformed teachers say that in the accounts of Jesus baptism in Mark (1:10) and Matthew (3:16), where it says Jesus “came up out of the water” ….that that must mean He was “under the water” first before He came “up” and then went “out” of the water.  That’s an erroneous conclusion.  Remember that Jesus was with John in the VERY SHALLOW Jordan River.    Besides, when you go into a river from dry land, what direction do you always have to go?   Down….because the water is running through some kind of a depression below dry ground.   Going down into the water (from which you later go “up”) doesn’t demand that you go completely “under” the water.   Many a fly fisherman goes down into the water to fish without ever going “under” the water.    Then, when it’s time to leave the water you go from the lower point/depression “up” and finally “out of the water” and onto dry land.    The New Testament Greek words used in those two accounts easily “allow” this understanding.   What’s described here, then, is movement from one place to another, and nothing more than that.)

Pre-Service Prayer

Lord, open now, my heart to hear      And through Your Word to me, draw near;

Let me Your Word e’er pure retain,    Let me Your child and heir remain.

Your Word does deeply move the heart,       Your Word does perfect health impart,

Your Word my soul with joy does bless,        Your Word brings peace and happiness.  Amen.

The portions of God’s Word used in this worship flyer have been taken from The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version    Copyright 2019,    The Wartburg Project, Inc.   All rights reserved.   Used with permission Music and lyrics, as needed, are used with permission via #A712831

            The Order of Holy Communion



Silent Prayer                                                                                                                             Pre-service music

The Introduction and Welcome to Worship   


We Praise Our God

The Invocation

Pastor               We begin this service in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.               Amen.

Opening Hymn                                                                 Hymn 250  “From All That Dwells Below The Skies”


1 From all that dwell below the skies   Let the Creator’s praise arise.

Alleluia! Alleluia!  

Let the Redeemer’s name be sung   Through ev’ry land, by ev’ry tongue.

Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!


2 Eternal are your mercies, Lord;   Eternal is your glorious Word.

Alleluia! Alleluia!

Your praise shall sound from shore to shore   Till suns shall rise and set no more.

Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!


After which the Pastor will invite the Congregation to rise as

We Make Confession Of Our Sins To God


Pastor  God, our Heavenly Father, invites us to come into His presence and to worship Him with humble and penitent hearts.  Therefore, let us now turn to Him, acknowledging our sinfulness and seeking His forgiveness for all our sins.

Congregation   Holy and merciful Father,   I confess that I am by nature sinful   and that I have disobeyed You in my thoughts, words, and actions;    I have done what is evil in Your sight   and have failed to do what is

good.    For this I know that I deserve Your punishment, both now and for eternity.     But I am truly sorry for all my sins    and trusting in the perfect life     and innocent death of my Savior, Jesus Christ,     I plead:    God have mercy on me, a sinner.


(Sung)   Lord have mercy on us;   Christ have mercy on us;   Lord, have mercy on us.


Pastor  Our gracious Lord and Master has shown us His mercy:   He has given His one and only Son to save us from all our sins.    And now, having humbly and sincerely confessed your sins before Almighty God, be strengthened in

your faith, mindful that our Lord is not willing that anyone should perish eternally, but that everyone should come to repentance, turning from their evil ways and receiving from Him everlasting life.    God has commanded His ministers to declare His forgiveness of sins to all who are penitent.   Therefore, addressing you as a called servant of Christ,  and according to His command and under His authority,   I forgive you all your sins in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.     May the peace of God rest upon all of you.    Amen.



Glory be to God on high  and on earth peace good will to men.

We praise You, we bless You, we worship You.  We glorify You, we give thanks to You for Your great glory.

O Lord God heavenly King, God the Father almighty.   O Lord, the only begotten Son, Jesus Christ,

O Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father,   You take away the sin of the world.   Have mercy on us.

You take away the sin of the world.   Receive our prayer.

You sit at the right hand of God the Father.      Have mercy on us.

For You only are holy.   You only are the Lord.

You only, O Christ, with the Holy Spirit.   Are most high in the glory of God the Father.   Amen

Our Prayer for This Morning 

Almighty and eternal God   +    direct our actions that we may always please You.   +   Open our eyes by the power of the Holy Spirit   +  that we may see and confess Your Son,  Jesus Christ, +  as truly God and truly Man, + and as the one and only Redeemer from sin for the entire world.    + As we reflect today upon the day of our Baptism,   +   help us to appreciate the significance of that event for each of us  +   since, through Baptism, You gifted us with faith,    forgiveness,   and membership in Your family of believers.   +   Through Your Spirit working in Your Word    +   empower us to live godly lives for You here on earth      as we look forward to the day when we will live eternally with You in heaven.   +   We ask all this in the name of Jesus Christ, +   Your Son, our Lord, +   Who – along with You and the Holy Spirit      live and reign as the one, true God,   + now and forever.  +   Amen.


after which the Congregation may be seated


We Hear God’s Word

The First Lesson                                                                                                                               Acts 8:26-40


26 Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, “Get up and go south to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” (This is an isolated area.) 27 So he got up and went. And there was a man, an Ethiopian eunuch, a court official of Candace, Queen of the Ethiopians, who was in charge of all her treasury. He had come to Jerusalem to worship. 28 He was on his way home, sitting in his chariot and reading the prophet Isaiah.

29 The Spirit told Philip, “Go over there and stay close to that chariot.” 30 Philip ran up to it and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet.

Philip asked, “Do you understand what you are reading?”

31 The man replied, “How can I unless someone explains it to me?” And he invited Philip to come up and sit with him.

32 Now the passage of Scripture the eunuch was reading was this:

He was led like a sheep to the slaughter, and as a lamb before its shearer is silent,

so He does not open His mouth. 33 In His humiliation justice was denied Him.

Who will talk about His generation?   For His life is taken from the earth.

34 The eunuch said to Philip, “I ask you, Who is the prophet talking about—himself or someone else?” 35 Then Philip began to speak. Starting with that very passage of Scripture, he told him the good news about Jesus. 36 As they were traveling along the road, they came to some water, and the eunuch said, “Look, here is water. What is there to prevent me from being baptized?”

38 He ordered the chariot to stop. Then both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water, and Philip baptized him. 39 When they stepped up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord carried Philip away. The eunuch did not see him anymore, but went on his way rejoicing.

40 Philip, however, found himself at Azotus. And as he went from place to place, he preached the gospel in all the towns until he came to Caesarea.

The Epistle Lesson                                                                                                                       Romans 6:1-14

What shall we say then? Shall we keep on sinning so that grace may increase? 2 Absolutely not! We died to sin. How can we go on living in it any longer? 3 Or do you not know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? 4 We were therefore buried with him by this baptism into His death, so that just as He was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too would also walk in a new life.   5 For if we have been united with Him in the likeness of His death, we will certainly also be united with Him in the likeness of His resurrection.

6 We know that our old self was crucified with Him, to make our sinful body powerless, so that we would not continue to serve sin. 7 For the person who has died has been declared free from sin. 8 And since we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with Him. 9 We know that since Christ has been raised from the dead, He will never die again. Death no longer has control over Him. 10 For the death He died, He died to sin once and for all, but the life He lives, He lives to God. 11 In the same way also consider yourselves dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus.

12 Therefore, do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its desires. 13 Do not offer the members of your body to sin as tools of unrighteousness. Instead, offer yourselves to God as those who are alive from the dead, and offer the members of your body to God as tools of righteousness. 14 Indeed, sin will not continue to control you, because you are not under law but under grace.

                        following which the Congregation will rise, out of respect for Jesus for

Today’s Gospel Lesson                                                                                                             Matthew 3:13-17

13 Then Jesus came from Galilee to be baptized by John at the Jordan. 14 But John tried to stop Him, saying, “I need to be baptized by You, and yet You come to me?”

15 But Jesus answered him, “Let it be so now, because it is proper for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then John let Him. 16 After Jesus was baptized, He immediately went up out of the water. Suddenly, the heavens were opened for Him! He saw the Spirit of God, descending like a dove and landing on Him, 17 and a voice out of the heavens said, “This is My Son, Whom I love. I am well pleased with Him.”

The Nicene Creed

I believe in One God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth,  and of all things visible and invisible.  And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, begotten of His Father before all worlds, God of God,  Light of Light.  Very God of Very God.  Begotten, not made.  Being of one substance with the Father, By Whom all things were made;  Who for us men and for our salvation, came down from heaven   And was incarnate by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary   And was made man;  And was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate.  He suffered and was buried;  And the third day He rose again according to the Scriptures;  And ascended into heaven,  And sitteth on the right hand of the Father;   And He shall come again with glory, to judge both the quick and the dead;  Whose Kingdom shall have no end.   And I believe in the Holy Ghost,  The Lord and Giver of Life,  Who proceedeth from the Father and the Son,  Who with the Father and the Son together is worshiped and glorified,  Who spake by the Prophets.  And I believe one holy Christian and Apostolic Church.  I acknowledge one Baptism for the remission of sins,  And I look for the resurrection of the dead,  And the life of the world to come.  Amen.


after which the Congregation will be seated for


The Children’s Lesson                                                                                                                      Acts 2:38-39


38 Peter answered them, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far away, as many as the Lord our God will call.”

Baptism’s Gifts…For Adults AND Children


Sermon Hymn                                                                    Hymn 294   “Baptized Into Your Name Most Holy”

1 Baptized into your name most holy,     O Father, Son, and Holy Ghost,

I claim a place, though weak and lowly,        Among your saints, your chosen host,

Buried with Christ and dead to sin.    Your Spirit now shall live within.

2 My loving Father, there you took me      To be henceforth your child and heir.

My faithful Savior, there you let me         The fruit of all your sorrows share.

O Holy Spirit, comfort me    When threat’ning clouds around I see.


3 My faithful God, you fail me never;          Your promise surely will endure.

Oh, cast me not away forever         If words and deeds become impure.

Have mercy when I come defiled;         Forgive, lift up, restore your child.


4 All that I am and love most dearly –       Receive it all, O Lord, from me.

Let me confess my faith sincerely             And help me your own child to be!

Let nothing that I am or own         Serve any will but yours alone.

The Pre-Sermon Salutation

Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus Christ, our Lord!   May the words of my mouth and the meditation of our hearts be pleasing in your sight, O Lord, our Rock and our Redeemer.  Amen.

The Sermon Text                                                                                                                      Galatians 3:24-29

24 So the law was our chaperone until Christ, so that we might be justified by faith. 25 But now that this faith has come, we are no longer under a chaperone.  2 In fact, you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. 27 Indeed, as many of you as were baptized into Christ have been clothed with Christ. 28 There is not Jew or Greek, slave or free, male or female, for you are all one and the same in Christ Jesus. 29 And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants and heirs according to the promise.

WHO Are You Wearing?

after the Sermon, the Congregation will REMAIN SEATED for

The Post-Sermon Blessing

May our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and God our Father, Who loved us and by His grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, now encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word.  Amen.

We Offer Our Gifts to the Lord

Our Offerings of Love to our Lord

Offerings will be received this morning through offering plates passed among those who have gathered here for worship.

   However, for those viewing this service online,  we offer you the following suggestions for providing God with Your thank-offerings through our ministry:     

1) You can mail a check (no cash) to the church address:   (415 N. 6th Place, Lowell, AR 72745)

2) You can donate on our website:


the Congregation will please rise as the offerings are brought to the altar

We Offer Our Prayers to the Lord

Today’s Prayers

Included in our Prayers today:

Intercessory Prayers for

Bill Krizsan, who is contending with bladder cancer;   and for

Tim Pfortmiller, who is in Mercy Hospital;   plus

A Prayer of Thanksgiving on behalf of

Harriet and John Johnson, who will be celebrating their wedding anniversary tomorrow (August 8);   and for

Cynthia and Duane Pansegrau, whose wedding anniversary is this coming Wednesday (August 10)

The Lord’s       Our Father, Who art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy name;   Thy kingdom come;   Thy will be done on earth as it is in

Prayer                          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.

We Celebrate the Lord’s Supper

Pastor                        The Lord be with you.

Congregation                           (Sung)       And also with You

Pastor                       Lift up your hearts.


Congregation                           (Sung)       We lift them up unto the Lord

Pastor                       Let us give thanks unto the Lord, our God.


Congregation                                                   (Sung)              It is good and right so to do.

Pastor           It is truly good and right that we should at all times and in all places give thanks to You, O Lord, holy Father, almighty,  everlasting God, through Jesus Christ our Lord, and we praise You especially for the

glorious resurrection of Your Son, the true Passover Lamb, Who by His sacrifice took away the sins of the world and by His resurrection restored everlasting life to all who believe in Him.  Therefore with angels and archangel, and all the company of heaven, we praise Your holy name and join their glorious song:

(Sung)                                                                                                                                      Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of heavenly hosts.                                    

                                    Heaven and earth are full of Your glory

                                    Hosanna, Hosanna, Hosanna in the highest.

                                    Blessed is He, Blessed is He, Blessed is He

                                    Who comes in the name of the Lord.

                                    Hosanna, Hosanna, Hosanna in the highest.

Consecration of the Elements

Pastor          The peace of the Lord be with you always.

Congregation – (Sung)              Amen.



O Christ, Lamb of God, You take away the sin of the world;

Have mercy on us.

O Christ, Lamb of God, You take away the sin of the world;

Have mercy on us.

O Christ, Lamb of God, You take away the sin of the world;

Grant us peace.   Amen.

The Exhortation Regarding the Lord’s Supper    (Pastor)


                                                                                       (Please read the following if you have not spoken with

                                                                                                 our Pastor about taking communion.  Thank you.)


     We ask that only “Confirmed, Communicant” members of this congregation, or of one of our Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod congregations come forward to receive the Lord’s Supper at this time.                     

     We believe, according to Scripture, that only those who are “one,” that is, in complete doctrinal agreement, united in a common public confession of faith, are to commune together at the same altar (see I Corinthians 10:17 and I Corinthians 1:10).

     To be “in communion” means to share and to hold in common.   By eating and drinking at our Lord’s Table, we are not only sharing in, with, and under the bread and wine, Jesus’ very body and blood…we are also publicly declaring that we hold in common a specific confession of faith.  In other words, as a result of having comprehensively studied the Scriptures together all of our communicants have agreed to accept and proclaim the same Biblical doctrines and practices.

     Through membership in a particular church body (for us, that church body is the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod), each person makes a public statement that he/she is in full agreement with the teachings and practices of that body.  Because not every church body or Lutheran Synod teaches and practices the same things, we in the WELS

want to be honest in our recognition of the doctrinal differences that, here on earth, separate us from other church bodies.   Please bear in mind that we are not, in any way, judging the legitimacy of your Christian faith.  Still, we ask that  if you have not (upon study of the Word with us) declared yourself to be in full doctrinal agreement with us, you would respectfully not join us in the Lord’s Supper this morning.  

     It is our prayer that our Scripture-based practice of “Close Communion” will encourage anyone among us today who is not presently in full fellowship with us to seriously examine the teachings and practices of his/her church in order to determine if those teachings and practices are really in full agreement with God’s Word. 

     And if you are guest among us today, we want you to know that it is our earnest desire that you might become familiar with the Biblical doctrines our congregation confesses, in order that you might one day join with us at the Lord’s altar in this public expression of full unity of doctrine and practice.  Until then, please know that we are most grateful for your participation as a fellow Christian in this worship service, and that we appreciate your understanding and respect of our Communion practice. 


The Distribution of the Sacrament

The Distribution Hymn                                                             Hymn 310   “I Come, O Savior, To Your Table“


  1. I come, O Savior, to Your Table, For weak and weary is my soul;

You, Bread of Life, alone are able   To satisfy and make me whole:


REFRAIN:         Lord, may Your body and Your blood            Be for my soul the highest good!


  1. Oh, grant that I in manner worYour May now trust solely in Your Word

And, conscious of the sins before me,    Look only unto Thee, O Lord!

  1. Unworthy though I am, O Savior, Because I have a sinful hearr,

Yet You Your lamb wilt banish never    Nor will Your faithfulness depart


  1. Oh, let me loathe all sin forever As death and poison to my soul

That I through wilful sinning never     May see Your Judgment take its toll!


  1. Your heart is filled with fervent yearning That sinners may salvation see

Who, Lord, to You in  faith are turning;          So let me too come, trustingly.


  1. Weary am I and heavy laden, With sin my soul is sore oppressed;

Receive me graciously, and gladden         My heart  for I am now Your guest.


  1. You here will find a heart most lowly That feels unworthy in Your sight

That duly weeps o’er sin, yet solely        Your merit pleads, as it is right.


  1. By faith I call Your holy Table The testament of Your deep love;

For by Your gift I now am able        To know the heart of God above.


  1. What higher gift can we inherit? It is faith’s bond and solid base;

It is the strength of heart and spirit,       The covenant of hope and grace.


  1. This feast is manna, wealth abounding Unto the poor, to weak ones power,

To angels joy, to hell confounding,        And life for us in death’s dark hour.


  1. Your body, given for me, O Savior, Your blood which You for me did shed,

These are my life and strength forever,      By them my hungry soul is fed.


  1. With You, Lord, I am now united; I live in You and You in me.

No sorrow fills my soul, delighted            It finds its peace in Calvary.


  1. Who can condemn me now? For surely The Lord is near, who justifies.

No hell I fear, and thus securely,       With Jesus I to heaven rise.


  1. Though death may threaten with disaster, It cannot rob me of my cheer;

For He who is of death the Master        With aid and comfort e’er is near.


  1. My heart has now become Your dwelling, O blessed Holy Trinity.

With angels I, Your praises telling,       Shall live in joy eternally.



After the Sacrament is celebrated, the pastor will invite the Congregation to rise

We Leave With The Lord’s Blessing

The Closing Prayer

The Closing Blessing

The LORD bless you and keep you.

The LORD make His face to shine upon you and be gracious unto you.

The LORD look with favor upon you, and give you His peace.   Amen.

The Closing Hymn                                                                     Hymn 323 “Almighty Father, Bless The Word”

1 Almighty Father, bless the word  Which through your grace we now have heard.

Oh, may the precious seed take root,   Spring up, and bear abundant fruit.


2 We praise you for the means of grace   As homeward now our steps we trace.

Grant, Lord, that we who worshiped here   May all at last in heav’n appear.


Post-service music,

Silent Prayer


Last Week at Grace                                                                             Worship Attendance: 81    Online views: 20

No Bible Class (Voters’ Meeting)

Tuesday Bible Study: 11    Budgetary Offerings: $ 1729    Online: $110

Memorial for Dan Beck: $100

Birthdays and Anniversaries this week 

August 08 – Tim Huebner;      August 08 – Harriet & John Johnson;

August 10 – Cynthia & Duane Pansegrau;     August 12 – Joseph Benedict;

August 13 – Dianne Pfortmiller

This Coming Week at Grace Lutheran Church

Today       Morning Worship, with the Lord’s Supper,  9:30 a.m.    

                 Fellowship: 10:45 a.m.

                 Bible Class and Sunday School, 11:05 a.m.

Tuesday   Bible Class,   10:30-11:30 am    

Sunday     Morning Worship, 9:30 a.m.          

                 Fellowship, 10:40 am          Sunday School/Bible Class 11 a.m.

Serving Us Next Sunday (8-13)                                                                  Ushers: James Boatright;   Jim Winnat

Elders:   Vic Walker, Tim Pfortmiller

Altar Guild: Christine Quinlan, Linda Winnat

Fellowship:    Ella Quinlan