The Season of Easter
Christian Worship: A Lutheran Hymnal (1993)
The Resurrection of Our Lord (Easter Dawn)
A miktam by David.
1Guard me, O God, for I take refuge in you.
2I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord.
I have no good apart from you.”
3The holy ones who are in the land are glorious.
All my delight is in them.
4Those who chase after another god will increase their sorrows.
I will not pour out their drink offerings of blood.
I will not take up their names on my lips.
5Lord, you are the cup that has been given to me.
You have secured an allotment for me.
6The property lines chosen for me fall in pleasant places.
Yes, a delightful inheritance is mine.
7I will bless the Lord, who guides me.
Even at night my heart instructs me.
8I have set the Lord always before me.
Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.
9Therefore my heart is glad,
and my whole being rejoices.
Even my flesh will dwell securely
10because you will not abandon my life to the grave.
You will not let your favored one see decay.
11You have made known to me the path of life,
fullness of joy in your presence,
pleasures at your right hand forever.
1 Corinthians 15:12-20
12Now if it is preached that Christ has been raised from the dead, how is it that some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? 13If there is no resurrection of the dead, not even Christ has been raised. 14And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is pointless, and your faith is pointless too. 15Then we are even guilty of giving false testimony about God, because we testified about God that he raised Christ, whom he did not raise, if it were true that the dead are not raised. 16For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised. 17And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. 18Then it also follows that those who fell asleep in Christ perished. 19If our hope in Christ applies only to this life, we are the most pitiful people of all.
20But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.
Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb. She saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb. 2So she left and ran to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved. “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb,” she told them, “and we don’t know where they put him!”
3So Peter and the other disciple went out, heading for the tomb. 4The two were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and got to the tomb first. 5Bending over, he saw the linen cloths lying there, yet he did not go in.
6Then Simon Peter, who was following him, arrived and went into the tomb. He saw the linen cloths lying there. 7The cloth that had been on Jesus’ head was not lying with the linen cloths, but was folded up in a separate place by itself. 8Then the other disciple, who arrived at the tomb first, also entered. He saw and believed.
The Resurrection of Our Lord (Easter Day)
23Oh how I wish that my words were written down.
Oh how I wish that they were inscribed in bronze,
24that they would be engraved in rock forever
with an iron tool and letters filled with lead.
25As for me, I know that my Redeemer lives,
and that at the end of time he will stand over the dust.
26Then, even after my skin has been destroyed,
nevertheless, in my own flesh I will see God.
27I myself will see him.
My own eyes will see him, and not as a stranger.
1 Corinthians 5:6-8
6Your boasting is not good. Do you not know that a little yeast leavens the whole batch of dough? 7Purge out the old yeast so that you may be a new batch, just as you are unleavened. For our Passover lamb has been sacrificed, namely, Christ! 8So let us keep celebrating the festival, not with old yeast, not with the yeast of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.
When the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so they could go and anoint Jesus. 2Very early on the first day of the week, at sunrise, they went to the tomb. 3They were saying to each other, “Who will roll the stone away from the entrance to the tomb for us?” 4When they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away.
5As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed. 6He said to them, “Do not be alarmed. You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. 7But go, tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.’”
8They went out and hurried away from the tomb, trembling and perplexed. They said nothing to anyone, because they were afraid.
The Second Sunday of Easter
After these events the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision. He said, “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward.”
2Abram said, “Lord God what can you give me, since I remain childless, and the one who will inherit my estate is Eliezer of Damascus?” 3Abram also said, “Look, you have given me no offspring, so a servant born in my house will be my heir.”
4Just then, the word of the Lord came to him. God said, “This man will not be your heir, but instead one who will come out of your own body will be your heir.” 5The Lord then brought him outside and said, “Now look toward the sky and count the stars, if you are able to count them.” He said to Abram, “This is what your descendants will be like.” 6Abram believed in the Lord, and the Lord credited it to him as righteousness.
1 John 5:4-10
4…because everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world: our faith. 5Who is the one who overcomes the world? Only the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.
6This is the one who came by water and blood: Jesus Christ. He did not come by the water alone but by the water and by the blood. The Spirit is the one who testifies, because the Spirit is the truth. 7In fact, there are three that testify: 8the Spirit, the water, and the blood, and these three are one.
9If we accept the testimony of people, God’s testimony is even greater, because it is the testimony that God gave about his Son. 10The one who believes in the Son of God has this testimony in him, but the one who does not believe has made God out to be a liar, because he has not believed in the testimony that God gave about his Son.
19On the evening of that first day of the week, the disciples were together behind locked doors because of their fear of the Jews. Jesus came, stood among them, and said to them, “Peace be with you!” 20After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. So the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord.
21Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you! Just as the Father has sent me, I am also sending you.” 22After saying this, he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23Whenever you forgive people’s sins, they are forgiven. Whenever you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”
24But Thomas, one of the Twelve, the one called the Twin, was not with them when Jesus came. 25So the other disciples kept telling him, “We have seen the Lord!”
But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands, and put my finger into the mark of the nails, and put my hand into his side, I will never believe.”
26After eight days, his disciples were inside again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them. “Peace be with you,” he said. 27Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and look at my hands. Take your hand and put it into my side. Do not continue to doubt, but believe.”
28Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!”
29Jesus said to him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”
30Jesus, in the presence of his disciples, did many other miraculous signs that are not written in this book. 31But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.
The Third Sunday of Easter
18I said, “My endurance has vanished, along with my hope from the Lord.”
19Remember my affliction and my homeless wandering, the wormwood and bitterness.
20My soul always remembers, and it has sunk within me.
21Nevertheless, I keep this in my heart. This is the reason I have hope:
22By the mercies of the Lord we are not consumed, for his compassions do not fail.
23They are new every morning. Great is your faithfulness.
24My soul says, “The Lord is my portion. Therefore, I will hope in him.”
25The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him.
26It is good to hope quietly for the salvation of the Lord.
1 Peter 2:11-20
11Dear friends, I urge you, as aliens and temporary residents in the world, to abstain from the desires of the sinful flesh, which war against your soul. 12Live an honorable life among the Gentiles so that even though they slander you as evildoers, when they observe your noble deeds, they may glorify God on the day he visits us.
13Submit to every human authority because of the Lord, whether to the king as the supreme authority 14or to governors as those who have been sent by him to punish those who do what is wrong and to praise those who do what is right. 15For this is God’s will: that you silence the ignorance of foolish people by doing good. 16Do this as free people, and do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but use it as servants of God. 17Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.
18Slaves, submit to your masters with total respect, not only to those who are good and kind but also to those who are harsh. 19For this is favorable: if a person endures sorrows while suffering unjustly because he is conscious of God. 20For what credit is it to you if you receive a beating for sinning and patiently endure it? But if you suffer for doing good and endure it, this is favorable with God.
16“In a little while you are not going to see me anymore, and again in a little while you will see me, because I am going away to the Father.”
17Therefore some of his disciples asked one another, “What does he mean when he tells us, ‘In a little while you are not going to see me, and again in a little while you will see me,’ and ‘Because I am going away to the Father’?” 18So they kept asking, “What does he mean by ‘a little while’? We don’t understand what he’s saying.”
19Jesus knew that they wanted to ask him about this, so he said to them, “Are you trying to determine with one another what I meant by saying, ‘In a little while you are not going to see me, and again in a little while you will see me’? 20Amen, Amen, I tell you: You will weep and wail, but the world will rejoice. You will become sorrowful, but your sorrow will turn to joy. 21A woman giving birth has pain, because her time has come. But when she has delivered the child, she no longer remembers the anguish, because of her joy that a person has been born into the world.
22“So you also have sorrow now. But I will see you again. Your heart will rejoice, and no one will take your joy away from you. 23In that day you will not ask me anything.”
The Fourth Sunday of Easter
11For this is what the Lord God says. Here I am. I myself will seek the welfare of my flock and carefully search for them. 12As a shepherd searches for his flock when his sheep that were with him have been scattered, so I will search for my flock and rescue them from all the places where they were scattered on a day of clouds and thick darkness. 13I will bring them out from the peoples and gather them from the countries and bring them to their own soil. I will shepherd them on the mountains of Israel, in the valleys, and in all the settlements of the land. 14I will lead them into good pasture, and their grazing land will be on the high mountains of Israel. There they will lie down in good grazing land, and they will pasture on rich pasture on the mountains of Israel. 15I myself will shepherd my flock. I myself will let them lie down, declares the Lord God. 16I will seek the lost. I will bring back the strays. I will bind up the injured. I will strengthen the weak. I will destroy the fat and the strong, and I will shepherd them with justice.
1 Peter 2:21-25
21Indeed, you were called to do this, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example so that you would follow in his steps. 22He did not commit a sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth. 23When he was insulted, he did not insult in return. When he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly. 24He himself carried our sins in his body on the tree so that we would be dead to sins and alive to righteousness. By his wounds you were healed. 25For you were like sheep going astray, but you are now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.
11“I am the Good Shepherd. The Good Shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12The hired man, who is not a shepherd, does not own the sheep. He sees the wolf coming, leaves the sheep, and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the sheep and scatters them. 13Because he works for money, he does not care about the sheep.
14“I am the Good Shepherd. I know my sheep and my sheep know me 15(just as the Father knows me and I know the Father). And I lay down my life for the sheep. 16I also have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. Then there will be one flock and one shepherd.”
The Fifth Sunday of Easter
1 Chronicles 16:23-34
23Sing to the Lord, all the earth.
Proclaim the good news of his salvation from day to day.
24Declare his glory among the nations,
his wonderful acts among all the peoples,
25for great is the Lord and greatly to be praised.
He is to be feared above all gods.
26For all the gods of the peoples are not gods at all.
But the Lord made the heavens.
27Honor and majesty are before him.
Strength and joy are in his place.
28Ascribe to the Lord, you families of the peoples.
Ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.
29Ascribe to the Lord the glory of his name.
Bring an offering and come before him.
Worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness.
30Tremble before him, all the earth.
Surely the world stands firm.
It shall never be overthrown.
31The heavens will be glad.
The earth will rejoice.
They will say among the nations, “The Lord reigns.”
32The sea and everything that fills it will roar.
The fields and everything in them will celebrate.
33The trees of the forest will sing for joy before the Lord,
for he is coming to judge the earth.
34Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good,
for his mercy endures forever.
16Do not be deceived, my dear brothers. 17Every good act of giving and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the lights, who does not change or shift like a shadow. 18Just as he planned, he gave us birth by the word of truth so that we would be a kind of firstfruits of his creations.
19Remember this, my dear brothers: Let everyone be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry. 20Certainly, a man’s anger does not bring about what is right before God. 21So after getting rid of all moral filthiness and overflowing wickedness, receive with humility the word planted in you. It is able to save your souls.
5“But now I am going away to him who sent me, and not one of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ 6Yet because I have told you these things, sorrow has filled your heart. 7Nevertheless, I am telling you the truth: It is good for you that I go away. For if I do not go away, the Counselor will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. 8When he comes, he will convict the world about sin, about righteousness, and about judgment: 9about sin, because they do not believe in me; 10about righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will no longer see me; 11about judgment, because the ruler of this world has been condemned.
12“I still have many things to tell you, but you cannot bear them now. 13But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. For he will not speak on his own, but whatever he hears he will speak. He will also declare to you what is to come. 14He will glorify me, because he will take from what is mine and declare it to you. 15Everything the Father has is mine. This is why I said that he takes from what is mine and will declare it to you.”
The Sixth Sunday of Easter
11For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to give you peace, not disaster, plans to give you hope and a future. 12Then you will call on me and come to pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13When you seek me, you will find me, when you will seek me with all your heart. 14I will let you find me, declares the Lord, and I will bring you back from your exile. I will gather you from all the nations and from all the places where I have sent you as exiles, declares the Lord. I will bring you back to the place from which I sent you into exile.
22Be people who do what the word says, not people who only hear it. Such people are deceiving themselves. 23In fact, if anyone hears the word and does not do what it says, he is like a man who carefully looks at his own natural face in a mirror. 24Indeed, he carefully looks at himself; then, he goes away and immediately forgets what he looked like. 25But the one who looks carefully into the perfect law, the law of freedom, and continues to do so—since he does not hear and forget but actually does what it says—that person will be blessed in what he does.
26If anyone considers himself to be religious but deceives his own heart because he does not bridle his tongue, this person’s religion is worthless. 27Religion that is pure and undefiled in the sight of God the Father is this: to take care of orphans and widows in their affliction and to keep oneself unstained by the world.
“Amen, Amen, I tell you: Whatever you ask the Father in my name, he will give you. 24Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask, and you will receive, so that your joy may be made complete.
25“I have told you these things using figurative language. A time is coming when I will no longer speak to you using figurative language, but I will tell you plainly about the Father. 26In that day you will ask in my name, and I am not telling you that I will make requests of the Father on your behalf. 27For the Father himself loves you, because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God. 28I came from the Father and have come into the world. Now I am going to leave the world and go to the Father.”
29“Yes!” his disciples said. “Now you are speaking plainly and not using figurative language. 30Now we know that you know everything and do not need to have anyone ask you anything. For this reason we believe that you came from God.”
The Ascension of Our Lord
2 Kings 2:1-11
When the Lord was about to take Elijah up to heaven in a whirlwind, Elijah was traveling with Elisha from Gilgal. 2Elijah said to Elisha, “Stay here, for the Lord has sent me to Bethel.”
But Elisha said, “As surely as the Lord lives and as your soul lives, I will not leave you.” So they went down to Bethel.
3The sons of the prophets who were in Bethel came out to Elisha and said to him, “Do you know that today the Lord is taking your master away from you?”
Then he said, “Yes, I know. Be quiet.”
4Then Elijah said to him, “Elisha, stay here because the Lord has sent me to Jericho.”
But he said, “As surely as the Lord lives and as your soul lives, I will not leave you.” So they went to Jericho.
5Then the sons of the prophets who were in Jericho approached Elisha and said to him, “Do you know that today the Lord is taking your master away from you?”
He said, “Yes, I know. Be quiet.”
6Then Elijah said to him, “Stay here because the Lord has sent me to the Jordan.”
But he said, “As surely as the Lord lives and as your soul lives, I will not leave you.” So the two of them went on.
7Then fifty men from the sons of the prophets came and stood and watched them from a distance, while the two of them were standing at the Jordan. 8Elijah took his cloak, folded it together, and struck the water. The water divided to the right and to the left. Then the two of them crossed on dry land.
9When they had crossed, Elijah said to Elisha, “Ask me for whatever I can do for you before I am taken from you.”
Then Elisha said, “Let there be a double portion of your spirit on me.”
10He said, “You have asked for a difficult thing. If you see me being taken from you, it will surely be yours. But if not, then it will not.”
11While they were walking and talking, suddenly a chariot of fire and horses of fire came and separated them. So Elijah went up to heaven in a whirlwind.
I wrote my first book, Theophilus, about everything Jesus began doing and teaching 2until the day he was taken up, after he had given instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles he had chosen. 3After he had suffered, he presented himself alive to the apostles with many convincing proofs. He appeared to them over a period of forty days and told them things about the kingdom of God.
4Once, when he was eating with them, he commanded them, “Do not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for what the Father promised, which you heard from me. 5For John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
6So when they were together with him, they asked, “Lord, is this the time when you are going to restore the kingdom to Israel?”
7He said to them, “It is not for you to know the times or seasons that the Father has set by his own authority. 8But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
9After he said these things, he was taken up while they were watching, and a cloud took him out of their sight. 10They were looking intently into the sky as he went away. Suddenly, two men in white clothes stood beside them. 11They said, “Men of Galilee, why are you standing here looking up into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven.”
36As they were talking about these things, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.”
37But they were terrified and frightened and thought they were looking at a ghost.
38He said to them, “Why are you troubled? Why do doubts arise in your hearts? 39Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself. Touch me and see, because a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.” 40When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. 41While they still did not believe it (because of their joy), and while they were still wondering, he said to them, “Do you have anything here to eat?”
42They gave him a piece of broiled fish and some honeycomb. 43He took it and ate in front of them. 44He said to them, “These are my words, which I spoke to you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets, and the Psalms.”
45Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures. 46He said to them, “This is what is written and so it must be: The Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 47and repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. 48You are witnesses of these things. 49Look, I am sending you what my Father promised. But stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high.”
50He led them out as far as the vicinity of Bethany. He lifted up his hands and blessed them. 51And while he was blessing them, he parted from them and was taken up into heaven. 52So they worshipped him and returned to Jerusalem with great joy. 53They were continually in the temple courts, praising and blessing God. Amen.
The Seventh Sunday of Easter
24I will take you from among the nations. I will gather you from all the lands, and I will bring you to your own soil. 25I will sprinkle purifying water on you, and you will be clean. I will cleanse you from all your impurity and from all your filthy idols.
26Then I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit inside you. I will remove the heart of stone from your body and give you a heart of flesh. 27I will put my Spirit within you and will cause you to walk in my statutes, and you will carefully observe my ordinances. 28Then you will live in the land I gave your fathers. You will be my people, and I will be your God.
1 Peter 4:7-11
7The end of all things is near. So have sound judgment and be self-controlled for the sake of your prayers. 8Above all, love each other constantly, because love covers a multitude of sins. 9Be hospitable to one another without complaining.
10Serve one another, each according to the gift he has received, as good stewards of the many forms of God’s grace. 11If anyone speaks, let him do it as one speaking the messages of God. If anyone serves, let him do it as one serving with the strength God supplies so that God may be glorified in every way through Jesus Christ. To him belong the glory and the power forever and ever. Amen.
26“When the Counselor comes, whom I will send to you from the Father—the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father—he will testify about me. 27And you also are going to testify, because you have been with me from the beginning.”
16:1“I have told you these things so that you will not fall away. 2They will put you out of the synagogues. In fact, a time is coming when anyone who murders you will think he is offering a service to God. 3They will do these things because they have not known the Father or me. 4But I have told you these things so that when their time comes, you may remember that I told them to you. I did not tell you these things from the beginning, because I was with you.”
The Coming of the Holy Spirit: The Day of Pentecost
28After this, I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh.
Your sons and your daughters will prophesy.
Your old men will dream dreams.
Your young men will see visions.
29Even on the servants, both male and female,
I will pour out my Spirit in those days.
30I will show warning signs in the heavens and on the earth:
blood and fire and pillars of smoke.
31The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood,
before the coming of the great and terrifying day of the Lord.
32And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.
So on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there will be deliverance,
as the Lord has promised, among the survivors whom the Lord calls.
When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. 2Suddenly a sound like the rushing of a violent wind came from heaven, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3They saw divided tongues that were like fire resting on each one of them. 4They were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, since the Spirit was giving them the ability to speak fluently.
5Now there were godly Jewish men from every nation under heaven living in Jerusalem. 6When this sound was heard, a crowd came together and was confused, because each one heard them speaking in his own language. 7They were completely baffled and said to each other, “Look, are not all these men who are speaking Galileans? 8Then how is it that each of us hears them speaking in his own native language? 9Parthians, Medes, and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, and of Judea, Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt, and the parts of Libya around Cyrene; visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes; 11Cretans and Arabs—we hear them declaring in our own languages the wonderful works of God.” 12They were all amazed and perplexed. They kept saying to one another, “What does this mean?” 13But others mocked them and said, “They are full of new wine.”
23Jesus answered him, “If anyone loves me, he will hold on to my word. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. 24The one who does not love me does not hold on to my words. The word that you are hearing is not mine, but it is from the Father who sent me.
25“I have told you these things while staying with you. 26But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and remind you of everything I told you.
27“Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, and do not let it be afraid. 28You heard me tell you, ‘I am going away and I am coming to you.’ If you loved me, you would be glad that I am going to the Father, because the Father is greater than I.
29“I have told you now before it happens so that, when it does happen, you may believe. 30I will not speak with you much longer, because the ruler of this world is coming. He has no power over me. 31But I want the world to know that I love the Father and that I am doing exactly what the Father has instructed me.
“Get up. Let’s leave this place.”