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Godspeed, Pastor Amy

News | July 10, 2017

Amy Diller came two years ago as part of the pastoral residency program. She offered us her care, sense of humor, and insightful perspectives on faith. After farewell weekend on July 15-16, she will remain in the Quad Cities to be pastor at Together in Christ Parish, the newly combined parishes of St. James and All Saints churches. Her significant other lives here, too.

If you’d like to donate to a gift for Amy, please write a check to St. Paul clearly marked for “Resident Gift.” You’re also invited to send individual cards or notes to the church, or drop a written expression in the basket on farewell weekend, July 15-16.

Here are a few words from St. Paul people about Amy and her work:

St. Paul’s Residency Program is unique. It affords newly ordained pastors the opportunity to enter into a rigorous learning experience.  When Pastor Amy arrived two years ago, she found  herself immersed in a church with thousands of members; in a church which offers four services each weekend; in a church which is blessed with multiple groups and programs; and finally in a church with extremely gifted pastors and staff.

I commend Amy for her courage and resilience as she has faithfully served St. Paul. As a member of her Residency Team, I sought to offer feedback in a caring, helpful and sensitive way.  Pastor Amy has always received my comments with maturity, a willingness to really hear me, and a desire to grow in ministry.

God has blessed Pastor Amy with a multitude of gifts, including but not limited to, self-confidence, intelligence, kindness, creativity, a keen sense of humor, and an openness of heart. I have spiritually grown as a result of her sermons. I have benefited from her kindness and pastoral care.

Although I am sad to see Amy leave, I am elated for the many people she will serve throughout her ministry.

-Pam Bulat

Your time with us has passed much too quickly and we will be sad to see you leave. We will miss your friendly and professional demeanor. I suspect that you have learned much while here but conversely we have learned much from you in how we view and practice our faith. Your recent forum on sermons was not only enlightening but provided insight into how a good sermon relates to the gospel as well as how it applies to our daily lives. In addition, your Sunday morning adult Bible studies have provided additional insight into biblical history and how conditions /circumstances at the time apply equally today.  All of these and more will help guide us in our faith journey.

As you move onward with the next phases of your career, we not only wish you well but know that other congregations will gain so much with your leadership.

– James Weiss

One of our first fond memories of Pastor Amy came on a frigid fall morning in September at West Lake. Our church Primetime group was having a breakfast smorgasbord in a windy picnic area overlooking the beauty of the lake. Great food, great fellowship; but potentially an ideal Saturday morning to “sleep in” for a young resident pastor in her first few weeks at St. Paul. Instead of “sleeping in” Amy joined our group at the lake that morning. She ate with us, chatted freely and made a great first impression on everyone that attended.

It has always been fun to join Pastor Amy for her adult education session. One series that she conducted early in her time with us, was a food ministry series that she “teamed up” with Tammy Hermanson to lead. We were all curious, because we knew about her previous life as a chef. It is still easy to remember how much fun those sessions were, largely because Pastor Amy was such a fun leader.

Finally, at a most personal level, I recently received a beautiful unexpected pastoral care call from Amy. I had just returned home after being hospitalized for a successful but complex cardiac procedure. Her cheerful voice, her prayers for us, and her perfectly timed “follow up” really impacted us.

Your tons of friends here at St. Paul will be cheering you on and praying you through your exciting transition.

-Craig Hellyer

 

NEW RESIDENTS ARRIVE IN MID-AUGUST
With unanimous affirmation, the congregation of St. Paul voted in April to call Kelsey Fitting-Snyder and Joshua Kestner to serve as pastors in our congregation through the Pastoral Residency Program, starting in mid-August. St. Paul’s Pastoral Residency Program is a two-year program for gifted new pastors. It’s designed to sharpen vocational identity and shape wise pastoral practices and habits in the context of a healthy congregation and supportive multi-staff setting. St. Paul is privileged to be the only ELCA congregation to host a residency program for first-call pastors.

One comment on “Godspeed, Pastor Amy”

  • Jerry and Teresa Zinn

    July 14, 2017 at 1:31 pm

    Thanks Amy for your kindness and thoughtfulness. Your new congregation is very fortunate. Shine on!!! God bless,
    Jerry and Teresa

Leave a Comment

Isaiah 56:1-8

1Thus says the LORD,

“Preserve justice and do righteousness,

For My salvation is about to come

And My righteousness to be revealed.

2“How blessed is the man who does this,

And the son of man who takes hold of it;

Who keeps from profaning the sabbath,

And keeps his hand from doing any evil.”

3Let not the foreigner who has joined himself to the LORD say,

“The LORD will surely separate me from His people.”

Nor let the eunuch say, “Behold, I am a dry tree.”

4For thus says the LORD,

“To the eunuchs who keep My sabbaths,

And choose what pleases Me,

And hold fast My covenant,

5To them I will give in My house and within My walls a memorial,

And a name better than that of sons and daughters;

I will give them an everlasting name which will not be cut off.

6“Also the foreigners who join themselves to the LORD,

To minister to Him, and to love the name of the LORD,

To be His servants, every one who keeps from profaning the sabbath

And holds fast My covenant;

7Even those I will bring to My holy mountain

And make them joyful in My house of prayer.

Their burnt offerings and their sacrifices will be acceptable on My altar;

For My house will be called a house of prayer for all the peoples.”

8The Lord GOD, who gathers the dispersed of Israel, declares,

“Yet others I will gather to them, to those already gathered.”

Psalm 67

1God be gracious to us and bless us,

And cause His face to shine upon us—

Selah.

2That Your way may be known on the earth,

Your salvation among all nations.

3Let the peoples praise You, O God;

Let all the peoples praise You.

4Let the nations be glad and sing for joy;

For You will judge the peoples with uprightness

And guide the nations on the earth.

Selah.

5Let the peoples praise You, O God;

Let all the peoples praise You.

6The earth has yielded its produce;

God, our God, blesses us.

7God blesses us,

That all the ends of the earth may fear Him.

Romans 11:1-21

Israel Is Not Cast Away

1I say then, God has not rejected His people, has He? May it never be! For I too am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin.2God has not rejected His people whom He foreknew. Or do you not know what the Scripture says in the passage about Elijah, how he pleads with God against Israel?3“Lord, THEY HAVE KILLED YOUR PROPHETS, THEY HAVE TORN DOWN YOUR ALTARS, AND I ALONE AM LEFT, AND THEY ARE SEEKING MY LIFE.”4But what is the divine response to him? “I HAVE KEPT for Myself SEVEN THOUSAND MEN WHO HAVE NOT BOWED THE KNEE TO BAAL.”5In the same way then, there has also come to be at the present time a remnant according to God’s gracious choice.6But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works, otherwise grace is no longer grace.

7What then? What Israel is seeking, it has not obtained, but those who were chosen obtained it, and the rest were hardened;8just as it is written,

“GOD GAVE THEM A SPIRIT OF STUPOR,

EYES TO SEE NOT AND EARS TO HEAR NOT,

DOWN TO THIS VERY DAY.”

9And David says,

“LET THEIR TABLE BECOME A SNARE AND A TRAP,

AND A STUMBLING BLOCK AND A RETRIBUTION TO THEM.

10“LET THEIR EYES BE DARKENED TO SEE NOT,

AND BEND THEIR BACKS FOREVER.”

11I say then, they did not stumble so as to fall, did they? May it never be! But by their transgression salvation has come to the Gentiles, to make them jealous.12Now if their transgression is riches for the world and their failure is riches for the Gentiles, how much more will their fulfillment be!13But I am speaking to you who are Gentiles. Inasmuch then as I am an apostle of Gentiles, I magnify my ministry,14if somehow I might move to jealousy my fellow countrymen and save some of them.15For if their rejection is the reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance be but life from the dead?16If the first piece of dough is holy, the lump is also; and if the root is holy, the branches are too.

17But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, being a wild olive, were grafted in among them and became partaker with them of the rich root of the olive tree,18do not be arrogant toward the branches; but if you are arrogant, remember that it is not you who supports the root, but the root supports you.19You will say then, “Branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in.”20Quite right, they were broken off for their unbelief, but you stand by your faith. Do not be conceited, but fear;21for if God did not spare the natural branches, He will not spare you, either.

Matthew 15:10-28

10After Jesus called the crowd to Him, He said to them, “Hear and understand.11It is not what enters into the mouth that defiles the man, but what proceeds out of the mouth, this defiles the man.”

12Then the disciples *came and *said to Him, “Do You know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this statement?”13But He answered and said, “Every plant which My heavenly Father did not plant shall be uprooted.14“Let them alone; they are blind guides of the blind. And if a blind man guides a blind man, both will fall into a pit.”

The Heart of Man

15Peter said to Him, “Explain the parable to us.”16Jesus said, “Are you still lacking in understanding also?17“Do you not understand that everything that goes into the mouth passes into the stomach, and is eliminated?18“But the things that proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and those defile the man.19“For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, slanders.20“These are the things which defile the man; but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile the man.”

The Syrophoenician Woman

21Jesus went away from there, and withdrew into the district of Tyre and Sidon.22And a Canaanite woman from that region came out and began to cry out, saying, “Have mercy on me, Lord, Son of David; my daughter is cruelly demon-possessed.”23But He did not answer her a word. And His disciples came and implored Him, saying, “Send her away, because she keeps shouting at us.”24But He answered and said, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”25But she came and began to bow down before Him, saying, “Lord, help me!”26And He answered and said, “It is not good to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs.”27But she said, “Yes, Lord; but even the dogs feed on the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table.”28Then Jesus said to her, “O woman, your faith is great; it shall be done for you as you wish.” And her daughter was healed at once.

Healing Crowds

Isaiah 51:1-6

1“Listen to me, you who pursue righteousness,

Who seek the LORD:

Look to the rock from which you were hewn

And to the quarry from which you were dug.

2“Look to Abraham your father

And to Sarah who gave birth to you in pain;

When hewas but one I called him,

Then I blessed him and multiplied him.”

3Indeed, the LORD will comfort Zion;

He will comfort all her waste places.

And her wilderness He will make like Eden,

And her desert like the garden of the LORD;

Joy and gladness will be found in her,

Thanksgiving and sound of a melody.

4“Pay attention to Me, O My people,

And give ear to Me, O My nation;

For a law will go forth from Me,

And I will set My justice for a light of the peoples.

5“My righteousness is near, My salvation has gone forth,

And My arms will judge the peoples;

The coastlands will wait for Me,

And for My arm they will wait expectantly.

6“Lift up your eyes to the sky,

Then look to the earth beneath;

For the sky will vanish like smoke,

And the earth will wear out like a garment

And its inhabitants will die in like manner;

But My salvation will be forever,

And My righteousness will not wane.

Psalm 138

1I will give You thanks with all my heart;

I will sing praises to You before the gods.

2I will bow down toward Your holy temple

And give thanks to Your name for Your lovingkindness and Your truth;

For You have magnified Your word according to all Your name.

3On the day I called, You answered me;

You made me bold with strength in my soul.

4All the kings of the earth will give thanks to You, O LORD,

When they have heard the words of Your mouth.

5And they will sing of the ways of the LORD,

For great is the glory of the LORD.

6For though the LORD is exalted,

Yet He regards the lowly,

But the haughty He knows from afar.

7Though I walk in the midst of trouble, You will revive me;

You will stretch forth Your hand against the wrath of my enemies,

And Your right hand will save me.

8The LORD will accomplish what concerns me;

Your lovingkindness, O LORD, is everlasting;

Do not forsake the works of Your hands.

Romans 12:1-8

Dedicated Service

1Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.2And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.

3For through the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has allotted to each a measure of faith.4For just as we have many members in one body and all the members do not have the same function,5so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.6Since we have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, each of us is to exercise them accordingly: if prophecy, according to the proportion of his faith;7if service, in his serving; or he who teaches, in his teaching;8or he who exhorts, in his exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.

Matthew 16:13-20

13Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, He was asking His disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?”14And they said, “Some say John the Baptist; and others, Elijah; but still others, Jeremiah, or one of the prophets.”15He *said to them, “But who do you say that I am?”16Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”17And Jesus said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Barjona, because flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but My Father who is in heaven.18“I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.19“I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven.”20Then He warned the disciples that they should tell no one that He was the Christ.

Jesus Foretells His Death

Jeremiah 15:15-21

15You who know, O LORD,

Remember me, take notice of me,

And take vengeance for me on my persecutors.

Do not, in view of Your patience, take me away;

Know that for Your sake I endure reproach.

16Your words were found and I ate them,

And Your words became for me a joy and the delight of my heart;

For I have been called by Your name,

O LORD God of hosts.

17I did not sit in the circle of merrymakers,

Nor did I exult.

Because of Your hand upon me I sat alone,

For You filled me with indignation.

18Why has my pain been perpetual

And my wound incurable, refusing to be healed?

Will You indeed be to me like a deceptive stream

With water that is unreliable?

19Therefore, thus says the LORD,

“If you return, then I will restore you—

Before Me you will stand;

And if you extract the precious from the worthless,

You will become My spokesman.

They for their part may turn to you,

But as for you, you must not turn to them.

20“Then I will make you to this people

A fortified wall of bronze;

And though they fight against you,

They will not prevail over you;

For I am with you to save you

And deliver you,” declares the LORD.

21“So I will deliver you from the hand of the wicked,

And I will redeem you from the grasp of the violent.”

Psalm 26:1-8

1Vindicate me, O LORD, for I have walked in my integrity,

And I have trusted in the LORD without wavering.

2Examine me, O LORD, and try me;

Test my mind and my heart.

3For Your lovingkindness is before my eyes,

And I have walked in Your truth.

4I do not sit with deceitful men,

Nor will I go with pretenders.

5I hate the assembly of evildoers,

And I will not sit with the wicked.

6I shall wash my hands in innocence,

And I will go about Your altar, O LORD,

7That I may proclaim with the voice of thanksgiving

And declare all Your wonders.

8O LORD, I love the habitation of Your house

And the place where Your glory dwells.

Romans 12:9-21

9Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil; cling to what is good.10Be devoted to one another in brotherly love; give preference to one another in honor;11not lagging behind in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord;12rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, devoted to prayer,13contributing to the needs of the saints, practicing hospitality.

14Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.15Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep.16Be of the same mind toward one another; do not be haughty in mind, but associate with the lowly. Do not be wise in your own estimation.17Never pay back evil for evil to anyone. Respect what is right in the sight of all men.18If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men.19Never take your own revenge, beloved, but leave room for the wrath of God, for it is written, “VENGEANCE IS MINE, I WILL REPAY,” says the Lord.20“BUT IF YOUR ENEMY IS HUNGRY, FEED HIM, ANDIF HE IS THIRSTY, GIVE HIM A DRINK; FOR IN SO DOING YOUWILL HEAP BURNING COALS ON HIS HEAD.”21Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Matthew 16:21-28

21From that time Jesus began to show His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised up on the third day.22Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, “God forbid it, Lord! This shall never happen to You.”23But He turned and said to Peter, “Get behind Me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to Me; for you are not setting your mind on God’s interests, but man’s.”

Discipleship Is Costly

24Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me.25“For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.26“For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?27“For the Son of Man is going to come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and WILL THENREPAY EVERY MAN ACCORDING TO HISDEEDS.

28“Truly I say to you, there are some of those who are standing here who will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in His kingdom.”

Ezekiel 33:7-11

7“Now as for you, son of man, I have appointed you a watchman for the house of Israel; so you will hear a message from My mouth and give them warning from Me.8“When I say to the wicked, ‘O wicked man, you will surely die,’ and you do not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity, but his blood I will require from your hand.9“But if you on your part warn a wicked man to turn from his way and he does not turn from his way, he will die in his iniquity, but you have delivered your life.

10“Now as for you, son of man, say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus you have spoken, saying, “Surely our transgressions and our sins are upon us, and we are rotting away in them; how then can we survive?”’11“Say to them, ‘As I live!’ declares the Lord GOD, ‘I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn from his way and live. Turn back, turn back from your evil ways! Why then will you die, O house of Israel?’

Psalm 119:33-40

33Teach me, O LORD, the way of Your statutes,

And I shall observe it to the end.

34Give me understanding, that I may observe Your law

And keep it with all my heart.

35Make me walk in the path of Your commandments,

For I delight in it.

36Incline my heart to Your testimonies

And not to dishonest gain.

37Turn away my eyes from looking at vanity,

And revive me in Your ways.

38Establish Your word to Your servant,

As that which produces reverence for You.

39Turn away my reproach which I dread,

For Your ordinances are good.

40Behold, I long for Your precepts;

Revive me through Your righteousness.

Vav.

Romans 13:8-14

8Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law.9For this, “YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT ADULTERY, YOUSHALL NOT MURDER, YOU SHALL NOT STEAL, YOU SHALL NOTCOVET,” and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, “YOU SHALL LOVE YOURNEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.”10Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.

11Do this, knowing the time, that it is already the hour for you to awaken from sleep; for now salvation is nearer to us than when we believed.12The night is almost gone, and the day is near. Therefore let us lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.13Let us behave properly as in the day, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual promiscuity and sensuality, not in strife and jealousy.14But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts.

Matthew 18:15-20

15“If your brother sins, go and show him his fault in private; if he listens to you, you have won your brother.16“But if he does not listen to you, take one or two more with you, so that BY THE MOUTH OF TWO ORTHREE WITNESSES EVERYFACT MAY BE CONFIRMED.17“If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.18“Truly I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven.

19“Again I say to you, that if two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask, it shall be done for them by My Father who is in heaven.20“For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst.”

Forgiveness

Genesis 50:15-21

15When Joseph’s brothers saw that their father was dead, they said, “What if Joseph bears a grudge against us and pays us back in full for all the wrong which we did to him!”16So they sent a message to Joseph, saying, “Your father charged before he died, saying,17‘Thus you shall say to Joseph, “Please forgive, I beg you, the transgression of your brothers and their sin, for they did you wrong.”’ And now, please forgive the transgression of the servants of the God of your father.” And Joseph wept when they spoke to him.18Then his brothers also came and fell down before him and said, “Behold, we are your servants.”19But Joseph said to them, “Do not be afraid, for am I in God’s place?20“As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive.21“So therefore, do not be afraid; I will provide for you and your little ones.” So he comforted them and spoke kindly to them.

Death of Joseph

Psalm 103:1-13

1Bless the LORD, O my soul,

And all that is within me, bless His holy name.

2Bless the LORD, O my soul,

And forget none of His benefits;

3Who pardons all your iniquities,

Who heals all your diseases;

4Who redeems your life from the pit,

Who crowns you with lovingkindness and compassion;

5Who satisfies your years with good things,

So that your youth is renewed like the eagle.

6The LORD performs righteous deeds

And judgments for all who are oppressed.

7He made known His ways to Moses,

His acts to the sons of Israel.

8The LORD is compassionate and gracious,

Slow to anger and abounding in lovingkindness.

9He will not always strive with us,

Nor will He keep His anger forever.

10He has not dealt with us according to our sins,

Nor rewarded us according to our iniquities.

11For as high as the heavens are above the earth,

So great is His lovingkindness toward those who fear Him.

12As far as the east is from the west,

So far has He removed our transgressions from us.

13Just as a father has compassion on his children,

So the LORD has compassion on those who fear Him.

Romans 14:1-12

Principles of Conscience

1Now accept the one who is weak in faith, but not for the purpose of passing judgment on his opinions.2One person has faith that he may eat all things, but he who is weak eats vegetables only.3The one who eats is not to regard with contempt the one who does not eat, and the one who does not eat is not to judge the one who eats, for God has accepted him.4Who are you to judge the servant of another? To his own master he stands or falls; and he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand.

5One person regards one day above another, another regards every day alike. Each person must be fully convinced in his own mind.6He who observes the day, observes it for the Lord, and he who eats, does so for the Lord, for he gives thanks to God; and he who eats not, for the Lord he does not eat, and gives thanks to God.7For not one of us lives for himself, and not one dies for himself;8for if we live, we live for the Lord, or if we die, we die for the Lord; therefore whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s.9For to this end Christ died and lived again, that He might be Lord both of the dead and of the living.

10But you, why do you judge your brother? Or you again, why do you regard your brother with contempt? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God.11For it is written,

“AS I LIVE, SAYS THE LORD, EVERYKNEE SHALL BOW TO ME,

AND EVERY TONGUE SHALLGIVE PRAISE TO GOD.”

12So then each one of us will give an account of himself to God.

Matthew 18:21-35

21Then Peter came and said to Him, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to seven times?”22Jesus *said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.

23“For this reason the kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who wished to settle accounts with his slaves.24“When he had begun to settle them, one who owed him ten thousand talents was brought to him.25“But since he did not have the means to repay, his lord commanded him to be sold, along with his wife and children and all that he had, and repayment to be made.26“So the slave fell to the ground and prostrated himself before him, saying, ‘Have patience with me and I will repay you everything.’27“And the lord of that slave felt compassion and released him and forgave him the debt.28“But that slave went out and found one of his fellow slaves who owed him a hundred denarii; and he seized him and began to choke him, saying, ‘Pay back what you owe.’29“So his fellow slave fell to the ground and began to plead with him, saying, ‘Have patience with me and I will repay you.’30“But he was unwilling and went and threw him in prison until he should pay back what was owed.31“So when his fellow slaves saw what had happened, they were deeply grieved and came and reported to their lord all that had happened.32“Then summoning him, his lord *said to him, ‘You wicked slave, I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me.33‘Should you not also have had mercy on your fellow slave, in the same way that I had mercy on you?’34“And his lord, moved with anger, handed him over to the torturers until he should repay all that was owed him.35“My heavenly Father will also do the same to you, if each of you does not forgive his brother from your heart.”

Jonah 3:10-4:11

10When God saw their deeds, that they turned from their wicked way, then God relented concerning the calamity which He had declared He would bring upon them. And He did not do it.

Jonah’s Displeasure Rebuked

1But it greatly displeased Jonah and he became angry.2He prayed to the LORD and said, “Please LORD, was not this what I said while I was still in my own country? Therefore in order to forestall this I fled to Tarshish, for I knew that You are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, and one who relents concerning calamity.3“Therefore now, O LORD, please take my life from me, for death is better to me than life.”4The LORD said, “Do you have good reason to be angry?”

5Then Jonah went out from the city and sat east of it. There he made a shelter for himself and sat under it in the shade until he could see what would happen in the city.6So the LORD God appointed a plant and it grew up over Jonah to be a shade over his head to deliver him from his discomfort. And Jonah was extremely happy about the plant.7But God appointed a worm when dawn came the next day and it attacked the plant and it withered.8When the sun came up God appointed a scorching east wind, and the sun beat down on Jonah’s head so that he became faint and begged with all his soul to die, saying, “Death is better to me than life.”

9Then God said to Jonah, “Do you have good reason to be angry about the plant?” And he said, “I have good reason to be angry, even to death.”10Then the LORD said, “You had compassion on the plant for which you did not work and which you did not cause to grow, which came up overnight and perished overnight.11“Should I not have compassion on Nineveh, the great city in which there are more than 120,000 persons who do not know the difference between their right and left hand, as well as many animals?”

Psalm 145:1-8

1I will extol You, my God, O King,

And I will bless Your name forever and ever.

2Every day I will bless You,

And I will praise Your name forever and ever.

3Great is the LORD, and highly to be praised,

And His greatness is unsearchable.

4One generation shall praise Your works to another,

And shall declare Your mighty acts.

5On the glorious splendor of Your majesty

And on Your wonderful works, I will meditate.

6Men shall speak of the power of Your awesome acts,

And I will tell of Your greatness.

7They shall eagerly utter the memory of Your abundant goodness

And will shout joyfully of Your righteousness.

8The LORD is gracious and merciful;

Slow to anger and great in lovingkindness.

Philippians 1:21-30

To Live Is Christ

21For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.22But if I am to live on in the flesh, this will mean fruitful labor for me; and I do not know which to choose.23But I am hard-pressed from both directions, having the desire to depart and be with Christ, for that is very much better;24yet to remain on in the flesh is more necessary for your sake.25Convinced of this, I know that I will remain and continue with you all for your progress and joy in the faith,26so that your proud confidence in me may abound in Christ Jesus through my coming to you again.

27Only conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or remain absent, I will hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;28in no way alarmed by your opponents—which is a sign of destruction for them, but of salvation for you, and that too, from God.29For to you it has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake,30experiencing the same conflict which you saw in me, and now hear to be in me.

Matthew 20:1-16

Laborers in the Vineyard

1“For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire laborers for his vineyard.2“When he had agreed with the laborers for a denarius for the day, he sent them into his vineyard.3“And he went out about the third hour and saw others standing idle in the market place;4and to those he said, ‘You also go into the vineyard, and whatever is right I will give you.’ And so they went.5“Again he went out about the sixth and the ninth hour, and did the same thing.6“And about the eleventh hour he went out and found others standing around; and he *said to them, ‘Why have you been standing here idle all day long?’7“They *said to him, ‘Because no one hired us.’ He *said to them, ‘You go into the vineyard too.’

8“When evening came, the owner of the vineyard *said to his foreman, ‘Call the laborers and pay them their wages, beginning with the last group to the first.’9“When those hired about the eleventh hour came, each one received a denarius.10“When those hired first came, they thought that they would receive more; but each of them also received a denarius.11“When they received it, they grumbled at the landowner,12saying, ‘These last men have worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden and the scorching heat of the day.’13“But he answered and said to one of them, ‘Friend, I am doing you no wrong; did you not agree with me for a denarius?14‘Take what is yours and go, but I wish to give to this last man the same as to you.15‘Is it not lawful for me to do what I wish with what is my own? Or is your eye envious because I am generous?’16“So the last shall be first, and the first last.”

Death, Resurrection Foretold

Ezekiel 18:1-32

God Deals Justly with Individuals

1Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying,2“What do you mean by using this proverb concerning the land of Israel, saying,

‘The fathers eat the sour grapes,

But the children’s teeth are set on edge’?

3“As I live,” declares the Lord GOD, “you are surely not going to use this proverb in Israel anymore.4“Behold, all souls are Mine; the soul of the father as well as the soul of the son is Mine. The soul who sins will die.

5“But if a man is righteous and practices justice and righteousness,6and does not eat at the mountain shrines or lift up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, or defile his neighbor’s wife or approach a woman during her menstrual period—7if a man does not oppress anyone, but restores to the debtor his pledge, does not commit robbery, but gives his bread to the hungry and covers the naked with clothing,8if he does not lend money on interest or take increase, if he keeps his hand from iniquity and executes true justice between man and man,9if he walks in My statutes and My ordinances so as to deal faithfully—he is righteous and will surely live,” declares the Lord GOD.

10“Then he may have a violent son who sheds blood and who does any of these things to a brother11(though he himself did not do any of these things), that is, he even eats at the mountain shrines, and defiles his neighbor’s wife,12oppresses the poor and needy, commits robbery, does not restore a pledge, but lifts up his eyes to the idols and commits abomination,13he lends money on interest and takes increase; will he live? He will not live! He has committed all these abominations, he will surely be put to death; his blood will be on his own head.

14“Now behold, he has a son who has observed all his father’s sins which he committed, and observing does not do likewise.15“He does not eat at the mountain shrines or lift up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, or defile his neighbor’s wife,16or oppress anyone, or retain a pledge, or commit robbery, but he gives his bread to the hungry and covers the naked with clothing,17he keeps his hand from the poor, does not take interest or increase, but executes My ordinances, and walks in My statutes; he will not die for his father’s iniquity, he will surely live.18“As for his father, because he practiced extortion, robbed his brother and did what was not good among his people, behold, he will die for his iniquity.

19“Yet you say, ‘Why should the son not bear the punishment for the father’s iniquity?’ When the son has practiced justice and righteousness and has observed all My statutes and done them, he shall surely live.20“The person who sins will die. The son will not bear the punishment for the father’s iniquity, nor will the father bear the punishment for the son’s iniquity; the righteousness of the righteous will be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked will be upon himself.

21“But if the wicked man turns from all his sins which he has committed and observes all My statutes and practices justice and righteousness, he shall surely live; he shall not die.22“All his transgressions which he has committed will not be remembered against him; because of his righteousness which he has practiced, he will live.23“Do I have any pleasure in the death of the wicked,” declares the Lord GOD, “rather than that he should turn from his ways and live?

24“But when a righteous man turns away from his righteousness, commits iniquity and does according to all the abominations that a wicked man does, will he live? All his righteous deeds which he has done will not be remembered for his treachery which he has committed and his sin which he has committed; for them he will die.25“Yet you say, ‘The way of the Lord is not right.’ Hear now, O house of Israel! Is My way not right? Is it not your ways that are not right?26“When a righteous man turns away from his righteousness, commits iniquity and dies because of it, for his iniquity which he has committed he will die.27“Again, when a wicked man turns away from his wickedness which he has committed and practices justice and righteousness, he will save his life.28“Because he considered and turned away from all his transgressions which he had committed, he shall surely live; he shall not die.29“But the house of Israel says, ‘The way of the Lord is not right.’ Are My ways not right, O house of Israel? Is it not your ways that are not right?

30“Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, each according to his conduct,” declares the Lord GOD. “Repent and turn away from all your transgressions, so that iniquity may not become a stumbling block to you.31“Cast away from you all your transgressions which you have committed and make yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! For why will you die, O house of Israel?32“For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone who dies,” declares the Lord GOD. “Therefore, repent and live.”

Psalm 25:1-9

1To You, O LORD, I lift up my soul.

2O my God, in You I trust,

Do not let me be ashamed;

Do not let my enemies exult over me.

3Indeed, none of those who wait for You will be ashamed;

Those who deal treacherously without cause will be ashamed.

4Make me know Your ways, O LORD;

Teach me Your paths.

5Lead me in Your truth and teach me,

For You are the God of my salvation;

For You I wait all the day.

6Remember, O LORD, Your compassion and Your lovingkindnesses,

For they have been from of old.

7Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions;

According to Your lovingkindness remember me,

For Your goodness’ sake, O LORD.

8Good and upright is the LORD;

Therefore He instructs sinners in the way.

9He leads the humble in justice,

And He teaches the humble His way.

Philippians 2:1-13

Be Like Christ

1Therefore if there is any encouragement in Christ, if there is any consolation of love, if there is any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and compassion,2make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose.3Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves;4do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.5Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus,6who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped,7but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men.8Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.9For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name,10so that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth,11and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

12So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling;13for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.

Matthew 21:23-32

23When He entered the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came to Him while He was teaching, and said, “By what authority are You doing these things, and who gave You this authority?”24Jesus said to them, “I will also ask you one thing, which if you tell Me, I will also tell you by what authority I do these things.25“The baptism of John was from what source, from heaven or from men?” And they began reasoning among themselves, saying, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ He will say to us, ‘Then why did you not believe him?’26“But if we say, ‘From men,’ we fear the people; for they all regard John as a prophet.”27And answering Jesus, they said, “We do not know.” He also said to them, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things.

Parable of Two Sons

28“But what do you think? A man had two sons, and he came to the first and said, ‘Son, go work today in the vineyard.’29“And he answered, ‘I will not’; but afterward he regretted it and went.30“The man came to the second and said the same thing; and he answered, ‘I will, sir’; but he did not go.31“Which of the two did the will of his father?” They *said, “The first.” Jesus *said to them, “Truly I say to you that the tax collectors and prostitutes will get into the kingdom of God before you.32“For John came to you in the way of righteousness and you did not believe him; but the tax collectors and prostitutes did believe him; and you, seeing this, did not even feel remorse afterward so as to believe him.

Parable of the Landowner