March 24th, 2019

Oculi (Lent 3)

Explanation of the Week

Jeremiah was charged with speaking evil when he spoke the word of the Lord. (Jer 26:1-15) So also, Jesus is accused of doing evil when in fact He is doing good. He casts out a demon from a mute man so that he is able to speak. (Lk 11:14-28) But some said Jesus did this by the power of Beelzebub, Satan. Like Pharaoh of old, their hearts were hard. (Ex 8:16-24) They did not recognize the finger of God, the power of the Holy Spirit at work in and through Jesus. Jesus is the Stronger Man who overcomes the strong man. He takes the devil's armor of sin and death and destroys it from the inside out by the holy cross. He exorcizes and frees us by water and the Word. We were once darkness, but now we are light in Christ the Lord. (Eph 5:1-9) As children of light our tongues are loosed to give thanks to Him who saved us. In a world where demons roam we confess, "My eyes are ever toward the Lord, for He shall pluck my feet out of the net." (Introit)


My eyes are ever | toward the LORD,*
     for He shall pluck my feet out | of the net.
Turn Yourself to me, and have mer- | cy on me,*
     for I am desolate and af- | flicted. (Psalm 25:15-16)

To You, O LORD, I lift | up my soul.*
     O my God, I trust in You; let me not | be ashamed;
the troubles of my heart | have enlarged;*
     bring me out of | my distresses!
Look on my affliction | and my pain,*
     and forgive | all my sins.
Keep my soul, and de- | liver me;*
     let me not be ashamed, for I put my | trust in You. (Psalm 25:1-2, 17-18, 20)

Collect (LSB)

O God, whose glory it is always to have mercy, be gracious to all who have gone astray from Your ways and bring them again with penitent hearts and steadfast faith to embrace and hold fast the unchangeable truth of Your Word; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

Collect (TLH)

We beseech Thee, Almighty God, look upon the hearty desires of Thy humble servants and stretch forth the right hand of Thy majesty to be our defense against all our enemies; through Jesus Christ, Thy Son, our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. Amen.

Collecta Latina

Quaesumus omnipotens Deus, vota humilium respice, atque ad defensionem nostram, et dexteram tuae majestatis extende. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum filium tuum, qui tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus sancti Deus. Per omnia secula seculorum, Amen.

Old Testament (LSB): Exodus 8:16-24

The Plague of flies

 16Then the LORD said to Moses, "Say to Aaron, 'Stretch out your staff and strike the dust of the earth, that it may become [a]gnats through all the land of Egypt.'"

 17They did so; and Aaron stretched out his hand with his staff, and struck the dust of the earth, and there were gnats on man and beast. All the dust of the earth became (A)gnats through all the land of Egypt.

 18The magicians tried with their secret arts to bring forth gnats, but (B)they could not; so there were gnats on man and beast.

 19Then the magicians said to Pharaoh, "(C)This is the finger of God." But Pharaoh's heart was hardened, and he did not listen to them, as the LORD had said.

 20Now the LORD said to Moses, "(D)Rise early in the morning and present yourself before Pharaoh, as (E)he comes out to the water, and say to him, 'Thus says the LORD, "(F)Let My people go, that they may serve Me.

 21"For if you do not let My people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies on you and on your servants and on your people and into your houses; and the houses of the Egyptians will be full of swarms of flies, and also the ground on which they dwell.

 22"(G)But on that day I will set apart the land of Goshen, where My people are living, so that no swarms of flies will be there, in order that you may know that (H)I, the LORD, am in the midst of the land.

 23"I will [b]put a division between My people and your people. Tomorrow this sign will occur."'"

 24Then the LORD did so. And there came great swarms of flies into the house of Pharaoh and the houses of his servants and the land was (I)laid waste because of the swarms of flies in all the land of Egypt.

Footnotes:Exodus 8:16 Or lice Exodus 8:23 Lit set a ransom
Cross references:Exodus 8:17 : Ps 105:31 Exodus 8:18 : Ex 7:11, 12; 8:7; 9:11 Exodus 8:19 : Ex 7:5; 10:7; Ps 8:3; Luke 11:20 Exodus 8:20 : Ex 7:15; 9:13 Exodus 8:20 : Ex 2:5; 7:15 Exodus 8:20 : Ex 3:18; 4:23; 5:1, 3; 8:1 Exodus 8:22 : Ex 9:4, 6, 24; 10:23; 11:7 Exodus 8:22 : Ex 9:29; 19:5; 20:11 Exodus 8:24 : Ps 78:45; 105:31

Old Testament: 2 Sam. 22:1-7

David's Psalm of Deliverance

 1(A)And David spoke (B)the words of this song to the LORD in the day that the LORD delivered him from the hand of all his enemies and from the hand of Saul.

 2He said,
         "(C)The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer;
    3(D)My God, my rock, in whom I take refuge,
         My (E)shield and (F)the horn of my salvation, my stronghold and (G)my refuge;
         My savior, You save me from violence.
    4"I call upon the LORD, (H)who is worthy to be praised,
         And I am saved from my enemies.
    5"For (I)the waves of death encompassed me;
         (J)The torrents of destruction overwhelmed me;
    6(K)The cords of Sheol surrounded me;
         The snares of death confronted me.
    7"(L)In my distress I called upon the LORD,
         Yes, I cried to my God;
         And from His temple He heard my voice,
         And my cry for help came into His ears.

Cross references:2 Samuel 22:1 : Ps 18:2-50 2 Samuel 22:1 : Ex 15:1; Deut 31:30 2 Samuel 22:2 : 1 Sam 23:25; 24:2; Ps 31:3; 71:3 2 Samuel 22:3 : Deut 32:4, 37; 1 Sam 2:2 2 Samuel 22:3 : Gen 15:1; Deut 33:29 2 Samuel 22:3 : Luke 1:69 2 Samuel 22:3 : Ps 9:9 2 Samuel 22:4 : Ps 48:1; 96:4 2 Samuel 22:5 : Ps 93:4; Jon 2:3 2 Samuel 22:5 : Ps 69:14, 15 2 Samuel 22:6 : Ps 116:3 2 Samuel 22:7 : Ps 116:4; 120:1


Arise, O LORD, do not let | man prevail;*
     let the nations be judged | in Your sight.
When my ene- | mies turn back,*
     they shall fall and perish at Your | presence. (Psalm 9:19, 3)

Epistle: Eph. 5:1-9

Be Imitators of God

 1(A)Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children;

 2and (B)walk in love, just as Christ also (C)loved [a]you and (D)gave Himself up for us, an (E)offering and a sacrifice to God as a (F)fragrant aroma.

 3But (G)immorality or any impurity or greed must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints;

 4and there must be no (H)filthiness and silly talk, or coarse jesting, which (I)are not fitting, but rather (J)giving of thanks.

 5For this you know with certainty, that (K)no immoral or impure person or covetous man, who is an idolater, has an inheritance in the kingdom (L)of Christ and God.

 6(M)Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things (N)the wrath of God comes upon (O)the sons of disobedience.

 7Therefore do not be (P)partakers with them;

 8for (Q)you were formerly (R)darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as (S)children of Light

 9(for (T)the fruit of the Light consists in all (U)goodness and righteousness and truth),

Footnotes:Ephesians 5:2 One early ms reads us
Cross references:Ephesians 5:1 : Matt 5:48; Luke 6:36; Eph 4:32 Ephesians 5:2 : Rom 14:15; Col 3:14 Ephesians 5:2 : John 13:34; Rom 8:37 Ephesians 5:2 : John 6:51; Rom 4:25; Gal 2:20; Eph 5:25 Ephesians 5:2 : Heb 7:27; 9:14; 10:10, 12 Ephesians 5:2 : Ex 29:18, 25; 2 Cor 2:14 Ephesians 5:3 : Col 3:5 Ephesians 5:4 : Matt 12:34; Eph 4:29; Col 3:8 Ephesians 5:4 : Rom 1:28 Ephesians 5:4 : Eph 5:20 Ephesians 5:5 : 1 Cor 6:9; Col 3:5 Ephesians 5:5 : Col 1:13 Ephesians 5:6 : Col 2:8 Ephesians 5:6 : Rom 1:18; Col 3:6 Ephesians 5:6 : Eph 2:2 Ephesians 5:7 : Eph 3:6 Ephesians 5:8 : Eph 2:2 Ephesians 5:8 : Acts 26:18; Col 1:12 Ephesians 5:8 : John 12:36; Rom 13:12 Ephesians 5:9 : Gal 5:22 Ephesians 5:9 : Rom 15:14


Unto You I lift | up my eyes,*
     O You who dwell in the | heavens.
Behold, as the eyes of | servants*
     look to the hand of their | masters.
So our eyes look to the | LORD our God,*
     until He has mer- | cy on us.
Have mercy on | us, O LORD,*
     Have mercy | on us! (Psalm 123:1–3)

Gospel: Luke 11:14-28

Pharisees' Blasphemy

 14(A)And He was casting out a demon, and it was mute; when the demon had gone out, the mute man spoke; and the crowds were amazed.

 15But some of them said, "He casts out demons (B)by (C)Beelzebul, the ruler of the demons."

 16Others, to test Him, (D)were demanding of Him a sign from heaven.

 17(E)But He knew their thoughts and said to them, "Any kingdom divided against itself is laid waste; and a house divided against itself falls.

 18"If (F)Satan also is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand? For you say that I cast out demons by (G)Beelzebul.

 19"And if I by (H)Beelzebul cast out demons, by whom do your sons cast them out? So they will be your judges.

 20"But if I cast out demons by the (I)finger of God, then (J)the kingdom of God has come upon you.

 21"When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own house, his possessions are undisturbed.

 22"But when someone stronger than he attacks him and overpowers him, he takes away from him all his armor on which he had relied and distributes his plunder.

 23"(K)He who is not with Me is against Me; and he who does not gather with Me, scatters.

 24"(L)When the unclean spirit goes out of a man, it passes through waterless places seeking rest, and not finding any, it says, 'I will return to my house from which I came.'

 25"And when it comes, it finds it swept and put in order.

 26"Then it goes and takes along seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they go in and live there; and the last state of that man becomes worse than the first."

 27While Jesus was saying these things, one of the women in the crowd raised her voice and said to Him, "(M)Blessed is the womb that bore You and the breasts at which You nursed."

 28But He said, "On the contrary, blessed are (N)those who hear the word of God and observe it."

Cross references:Luke 11:14 : Matt 12:22, 24; Matt 9:32-34 Luke 11:15 : Matt 9:34 Luke 11:15 : Matt 10:25 Luke 11:16 : Matt 12:38; 16:1; Mark 8:11 Luke 11:17 : Matt 12:25-29; Mark 3:23-27 Luke 11:18 : Matt 4:10 Luke 11:18 : Matt 10:25 Luke 11:19 : Matt 10:25 Luke 11:20 : Ex 8:19 Luke 11:20 : Matt 3:2 Luke 11:23 : Matt 12:30; Mark 9:40 Luke 11:24 : Matt 12:43-45 Luke 11:27 : Luke 23:29 Luke 11:28 : Luke 8:21


The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart; Sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb: Moreover by them Your servant is warned. (Psalm 19)

Matins Psalm(s): Ps. 43

Prayer for Deliverance.

    1(A)Vindicate me, O God, and (B)plead my case against an ungodly nation;
         O deliver me from (C)the deceitful and unjust man!
    2For You are the (D)God of my strength; why have You (E)rejected me?
         Why do I go (F)mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?
    3O send out Your (G)light and Your truth, let them lead me;
         Let them bring me to Your (H)holy hill
         And to Your (I)dwelling places.
    4Then I will go to (J)the altar of God,
         To God my exceeding (K)joy;
         And upon the (L)lyre I shall praise You, O God, my God.
    5(M)Why are you in despair, O my soul?
         And why are you disturbed within me?
         Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him,
         The help of my countenance and my God.

Cross references:Psalm 43:1 : Ps 26:1; 35:24 Psalm 43:1 : 1 Sam 24:15; Ps 35:1 Psalm 43:1 : Ps 5:6; 38:12 Psalm 43:2 : Ps 18:1; 28:7; 31:4 Psalm 43:2 : Ps 44:9; 88:14 Psalm 43:2 : Ps 42:9 Psalm 43:3 : Ps 36:9 Psalm 43:3 : Ps 2:6; 3:4; 42:4; 46:4 Psalm 43:3 : Ps 84:1 Psalm 43:4 : Ps 26:6 Psalm 43:4 : Ps 21:6 Psalm 43:4 : Ps 33:2; 49:4; 57:8; 71:22 Psalm 43:5 : Ps 42:5, 11

First Reading: Gen. 27:30-45; 28:10-20

The Stolen Blessing

 30Now it came about, as soon as Isaac had finished blessing Jacob, and Jacob had hardly gone out from the presence of Isaac his father, that Esau his brother came in from his hunting.

 31Then he also made savory food, and brought it to his father; and he said to his father, "(A)Let my father arise and eat of his son's game, that (B)you may bless me."

 32Isaac his father said to him, "(C)Who are you?" And he said, "I am your son, (D)your firstborn, Esau."

 33Then Isaac trembled violently, and said, "(E)Who was he then that hunted game and brought it to me, so that I ate of all of it before you came, and blessed him? (F)Yes, and he shall be blessed."

 34When Esau heard the words of his father, (G)he cried out with an exceedingly great and bitter cry, and said to his father, "Bless me, even me also, O my father!"

 35And he said, "(H)Your brother came deceitfully and has taken away your blessing."

 36Then he said, "Is he not rightly named (I)Jacob, for he has supplanted me these two times? He took away my birthright, and behold, now he has taken away my blessing." And he said, "Have you not reserved a blessing for me?"

 37But Isaac replied to Esau, "Behold, I have made him (J)your master, and all his relatives I have given to him as servants; and with grain and new wine I have sustained him. Now as for you then, what can I do, my son?"

 38Esau said to his father, "Do you have only one blessing, my father? Bless me, even me also, O my father." So Esau lifted his voice and (K)wept.

 39Then (L)Isaac his father answered and said to him,
         "Behold, (M)away from the fertility of the earth shall be your dwelling,
         And away from the dew of heaven from above.
    40"By your sword you shall live,
         And your brother (N)you shall serve;
         But it shall come about (O)when you become restless,
         That you will break his yoke from your neck."

 41So Esau (P)bore a grudge against Jacob because of the blessing with which his father had blessed him; and Esau said to himself, "(Q)The days of mourning for my father are near; then I will kill my brother Jacob."

 42Now when the words of her elder son Esau were reported to Rebekah, she sent and called her younger son Jacob, and said to him, "Behold your brother Esau is consoling himself concerning you by planning to kill you.

 43"Now therefore, my son, (R)obey my voice, and arise, flee to (S)Haran, to my brother (T)Laban!

 44"Stay with him (U)a few days, until your brother's fury subsides,

 45until your brother's anger against you subsides and he forgets (V)what you did to him. Then I will send and get you from there. Why should I be bereaved of you both in one day?"

Cross references:Genesis 27:31 : Gen 27:19 Genesis 27:31 : Gen 27:4 Genesis 27:32 : Gen 27:18 Genesis 27:32 : Gen 25:33, 34 Genesis 27:33 : Gen 27:35 Genesis 27:33 : Gen 25:23; 28:3, 4; Num 23:20 Genesis 27:34 : Heb 12:17 Genesis 27:35 : Gen 27:19 Genesis 27:36 : Gen 25:26, 32-34 Genesis 27:37 : Gen 27:28, 29 Genesis 27:38 : Heb 12:17 Genesis 27:39 : Heb 11:20 Genesis 27:39 : Gen 27:28; Deut 33:13, 28 Genesis 27:40 : Gen 25:23; 27:29 Genesis 27:40 : 2 Kin 8:20-22 Genesis 27:41 : Gen 32:3-11; 37:4, 8 Genesis 27:41 : Gen 50:2-4, 10 Genesis 27:43 : Gen 27:8, 13 Genesis 27:43 : Gen 11:31 Genesis 27:43 : Gen 24:29 Genesis 27:44 : Gen 31:41 Genesis 27:45 : Gen 27:12, 19, 35

Vespers Psalm(s): Ps. 86

A Psalm of Supplication and Trust.

A Prayer of David.

    1(A)Incline Your ear, O LORD, and answer me;
         For I am (B)afflicted and needy.
    2(C)Preserve my soul, for I am a (D)godly man;
         O You my God, save Your servant who (E)trusts in You.
    3Be (F)gracious to me, O Lord,
         For (G)to You I cry all day long.
    4Make glad the soul of Your servant,
         For to You, O Lord, (H)I lift up my soul.
    5For You, Lord, are (I)good, and (J)ready to forgive,
         And (K)abundant in lovingkindness to all who call upon You.
    6(L)Give ear, O LORD, to my prayer;
         And give heed to the voice of my supplications!
    7In (M)the day of my trouble I shall call upon You,
         For (N)You will answer me.
    8There is (O)no one like You among the gods, O Lord,
         Nor are there any works (P)like Yours.
    9(Q)All nations whom You have made shall come and worship before You, O Lord,
         And they shall glorify Your name.
    10For You are (R)great and (S)do wondrous deeds;
         You alone (T)are God.
    11(U)Teach me Your way, O LORD;
         I will walk in Your truth;
         (V)Unite my heart to fear Your name.
    12I will (W)give thanks to You, O Lord my God, with all my heart,
         And will glorify Your name forever.
    13For Your lovingkindness toward me is great,
         And You have (X)delivered my soul from the depths of Sheol.
    14O God, arrogant men have (Y)risen up against me,
         And a band of violent men have sought my life,
         And they have not set You before them.
    15But You, O Lord, are a God (Z)merciful and gracious,
         Slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness and truth.
    16(AA)Turn to me, and be gracious to me;
         Oh (AB)grant Your strength to Your servant,
         And save the (AC)son of Your handmaid.
    17(AD)Show me a sign for good,
         That those who hate me may (AE)see it and be ashamed,
         Because You, O LORD, (AF)have helped me and comforted me.

Cross references:Psalm 86:1 : Ps 17:6; 31:2; 71:2 Psalm 86:1 : Ps 40:17; 70:5 Psalm 86:2 : Ps 25:20 Psalm 86:2 : Ps 4:3; 50:5 Psalm 86:2 : Ps 25:2; 31:14; 56:4 Psalm 86:3 : Ps 4:1; 57:1 Psalm 86:3 : Ps 25:5; 88:9 Psalm 86:4 : Ps 25:1; 143:8 Psalm 86:5 : Ps 25:8 Psalm 86:5 : Ps 130:4 Psalm 86:5 : Ex 34:6; Neh 9:17; Ps 103:8; 145:8; Joel 2:13; Jon 4:2 Psalm 86:6 : Ps 55:1 Psalm 86:7 : Ps 50:15; 77:2 Psalm 86:7 : Ps 17:6 Psalm 86:8 : Ex 15:11; 2 Sam 7:22; 1 Kin 8:23; Ps 89:6; Jer 10:6 Psalm 86:8 : Deut 3:24 Psalm 86:9 : Ps 22:27; 66:4; Is 66:23; Rev 15:4 Psalm 86:10 : Ps 77:13 Psalm 86:10 : Ex 15:11; Ps 72:18; 77:14; 136:4 Psalm 86:10 : Deut 6:4; 32:39; Ps 83:18; Is 37:16; 44:6, 8; Mark 12:29; 1 Cor 8:4 Psalm 86:11 : Ps 25:5 Psalm 86:11 : Jer 32:39 Psalm 86:12 : Ps 111:1 Psalm 86:13 : Ps 30:3 Psalm 86:14 : Ps 54:3 Psalm 86:15 : Ps 86:5 Psalm 86:16 : Ps 25:16 Psalm 86:16 : Ps 68:35 Psalm 86:16 : Ps 116:16 Psalm 86:17 : Judg 6:17; Ps 119:122 Psalm 86:17 : Ps 112:10 Psalm 86:17 : Ps 118:13

Second Reading: Mk. 9:1-13

The Transfiguration
 1And Jesus was saying to them, "(A)Truly I say to you, there are some of those who are standing here who will not taste death until they see the kingdom of God after it has come with power."

 2(B)Six days later, Jesus took with Him (C)Peter and James and John, and brought them up on a high mountain by themselves. And He was transfigured before them;

 3and (D)His garments became radiant and exceedingly white, as no launderer on earth can whiten them.

 4Elijah appeared to them along with Moses; and they were talking with Jesus.

 5Peter said to Jesus, "(E)Rabbi, it is good for us to be here; (F)let us make three tabernacles, one for You, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah."

 6For he did not know what to answer; for they became terrified.

 7Then a cloud formed, overshadowing them, and (G)a voice came out of the cloud, "(H)This is My beloved Son, listen to Him!"

 8All at once they looked around and saw no one with them anymore, except Jesus alone.

 9(I)As they were coming down from the mountain, He (J)gave them orders not to relate to anyone what they had seen, until the Son of Man rose from the dead.

 10They seized upon that statement, discussing with one another what rising from the dead meant.

 11They asked Him, saying, "Why is it that the scribes say that (K)Elijah must come first?"

 12And He said to them, "Elijah does first come and restore all things. And yet how is it written of (L)the Son of Man that (M)He will suffer many things and be treated with contempt?

 13"But I say to you that Elijah has indeed come, and they did to him whatever they wished, just as it is written of him."

Cross references:Mark 9:1 : Matt 16:28; Mark 13:26; Luke 9:27 Mark 9:2 : Matt 17:1-8; Luke 9:28-36 Mark 9:2 : Mark 5:37 Mark 9:3 : Matt 28:3 Mark 9:5 : Matt 23:7 Mark 9:5 : Matt 17:4; Luke 9:33 Mark 9:7 : 2 Pet 1:17 Mark 9:7 : Matt 3:17; Mark 1:11; Luke 3:22 Mark 9:9 : Matt 17:9-13 Mark 9:9 : Matt 8:4; Mark 5:43; 7:36; 8:30 Mark 9:11 : Mal 4:5; Matt 11:14 Mark 9:12 : Mark 9:31 Mark 9:12 : Matt 16:21; 26:24


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