Sunday, October 2, 2022

363. Proper 15 (Series A)

The lessons for this Sunday of the LSB 3-year lectionary (anywhere between Aug. 14 and 20) are Isaiah 56:1 and 6-8, Romans 11:1-2a and 13-15 and 28-32, and Matthew 15:21-28. Yeesh, they like to pick and choose, these lectionary pickers and choosers! The tune is the French tune JE CHANTERAI, SEIGNEUR, which the American Lutheran Hymnal (1930) paired with the rather Calvinistic hymn, "My heart delights, O Lord, upon Thy works to ponder." It's about time it was put to a more evangelical use, ne c'est pas? Excuse me for reading in a bit of Matthew 22 as I was writing this hymn, but I felt it complemented the idea that Matthew 15 applies to us both as Gentiles who benefit from Israel's rejection of Christ and as "establishment believers" who may, God forbid, begin to despise the grace to which we are accustomed.

O Israël, would that You joined yourself unto Christ,
Who came unto His own and by you was reviled;
And so, by your rejection, Jesus was sacrificed,
Yea, all mankind is reconciled.

Would that in you was found her faith, whose prayer persisted,
Demanding mercy of the Lord of Israël,
And she a Canaanite, unfit to be assisted!
Yet Christ's rebuke she answered well.

Thank God, the dogs that gather at the Master's table
Are not denied the scraps His children throw aside!
From stones to raise up Abram's heirs You, Lord, are able,
Yet for all nations will provide.

Forbid, O Christ, that we despise the host You gather
From highways, hedges, far-off lands and foreign tribes,
The poor and maimed and lame and blind, unto Your Father,
And to the joys Your word describes!

Let us not count ourselves above such humble strangers,
Who share alike Your sacraments, Your house of prayer;
But join them, sheltered in Your love through all life's dangers
Till in Your risen life we share.

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