“This Here Flesh” Sermon Series

All errors are my own. For a WORD version of this document (for formatting ease, email me at Katyandtheword at gmail subject line: This Here Flesh) —Topical prayers may be added

This Summer Series is deeply indebted to the Work of Cole Arthur Riley whose liturgy I have been following for many years. Her book “This Here Flesh” discusses embodied liturgy as a life practice through writing, wondering and breathing in and out who God is in your life and I highly recommend buying or borrowing or listening to the book as soon as possible.

Introduction (Can be used as Letter or Foundation for One)

If you use this series you must credit Cole Arthur Riley’s authorship and Book, as it is foundational for all of the work you see here. Please credit Cole Arthur Riley “This Here Flesh” and Pastor Katy Stenta for liturgy. Additionally, if you want to support her patreon which can be done from as little as $5 a month, that link is available here.

Week 1: Body (Ch 5) & Dignity (Ch. 1) Notes

Topical Prayer: Embodied

Genesis 1: 27-28 God creates humans
Hebrews 2:5-9, 14 Humans little less than angels
Mark 6: 34-44 Feeding 5,000

Call to Worship (breath prayer)
I am embodied. (breathe in)
I am created by God. (breathe out)

Invitation to Confession; Come let us present our full selves to God.

Prayer of Confession: I confess God that some days Jesus Christ’s very humanity escapes me. I do not picture him with scraped knees or grubby nose. I do not see him tripping and falling on his face in front of his disciples. Sometimes I want just a radiant, perfect Messiah. And yet, you sent us a Christ who affirmed our dignity. Jesus got to know us, teaching us, healing our bodies, eating with us and feeding us in oh so many ways. Help us to affirm our own humanity and dignity we pray. (Silent Confession) Amen

Affirmation of Forgiveness: As we live and breathe, the Holy Spirit is present and forgives, know the Good News: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven.

Prayer of the Day/Dedication (adapted from Cole Arthur Riley p. 14): God though some say that do be emotional is to be weak. Who says weakness can’t be beautiful? Let us Go in dignity to lie down and feel. I have nothing to prove. and to know that weakness is still embodied dignity. Amen.

Creative Idea; Take a Moment to Notice Your Body, Do you feel Embodied?

Week 2: Place (Ch 2) & Belonging (Ch 6) Notes
Genesis 28:1-5 Jacob promised a home
Matthew 13:31-32 Kingdom of Heaven a Nest
John 14:1-4 Kingdom of Heaven a House Big Enough
Luke 19:1-10 Jesus Makes a Place of Belonging at Zeccheus’s House

Topical Prayer: Belonging

Call to Worship* (Breath Prayer from Cole Arthur Riley’s @blackliturgies )
I am trying (breathe in)
I am here (breathe out)

Invitation to Confession: Come let us confess ourselves to God.

Prayer of Confession: Jesus, we confess that although you say that there is enough room, and you will be there and that we know the way to our Father’s House—we don’t believe it. It all seems just too big a metaphor to be true. Like the disciples we are full of questions. How exactly will it work? We feel like Jacob, like we have to trick our way into the blessing, or like the blessing itself is a trick. Help us when we feel like we are not worthy or like we do not belong. Fill us with love we pray. (Silent Confession) Amen.

Prayer of Confession: God we confess that we do not want everyone to belong. We grumble, like those who did not like Zeccheus. We would rather judge. Or perhaps we are just shy. Make us a place of radical invitation and hospitality and love we pray. Teach us how to be a place of belonging, just like your kingdom is bound to be. (Silent Confession) Amen.

Assurance of Pardon: God is love, we belong, so we know the truth: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven. Amen.

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: Let us go forth proclaiming the Good News is making a home and God wants to invite everyone, let us go into the world confident that we can share God’s love to others. Amen.

Creative Moment: Draw/Write Your Place, the Place you belong, feel the most at home, if you don’t have one, can you imagine such a place? If you can’t, its ok to sit with that discomfort

Week 3: Wonder Ch 3 & Calling Ch 4 Notes

Wonder and Calling Topical Prayer

Matthew 5: Beatitudes
Matthew 18:1-5: Kingdom of Heaven Enter as a Child
1 Samuel 3: Calling of Samuel
1 Timothy 4:11-16: Youth and Devotion
Psalm 19: World Proclaims God’s Wonder

Call to Worship (Breath prayer)
God, you are Wondrous (breathe in)
God, I am your child (breathe out)

Call to Confession: Come, let us be ourselves with God.

Prayer of Confession: God, we confess that we forget. We forget that we are fiercely and wondrously made. We forget that uniquely gifted. We confess that we hide in our busyness or our expertise or our perfection and forget to just be. Help us to be what we are called to be. Beautiful children of God. Beloved and Called exactly as we are. (Silent Confession) Amen

Assurance of Pardon: Christ heals all wounds. Come let us comfort ourselves with the good news: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven.

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: God, let us give permission to stand in wonder with you. Let us notice something beautiful today we pray. Amen.

Creative Moment* (from the book): Find 5 minutes today to do nothing and wonder about things. Preferably outside. Pick a flower or a cloud or a blade of grass or a favorite piece of music or doodle. You don’t have to focus on it the whole time, use it as a muse or inspiration instead of a focal point.

Week 4: Fear

Week 4: Fear Ch. 7 Notes
Psalm 23:1-4a: Shadow of Death
Psalm 91  El Shaddei (rest on El Shaddei v. 1) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Shaddai Mountains can mean places to worship and breasts can mean abundance of food so God of Many Mounds is a really rich image of God here. 
Psalm 22: My God, My God Why Have You Forsaken Me
Proverbs 9:10: Fear of God is the beginning of Wisdom
Deuteronomy 10:12-22: Fear the Lord, Love God, Love the Foreigner

Call to Worship (Breath prayer)
God, I am afraid (breathe in) 
But, You are still God (breathe out)

Invitation to Confession: It is time to open our fears to God.

Prayer of Confession: God we confess that we do not want to show fear. Fear means weakness or vulnerability. It means that we admit that we are flawed, mortal and will someday die. It is admitting that we are not God, and only you are. But is it not safe to show fear to you God? Perhaps this is what the phrase “fear of God” means. It means you are my safe sanctuary. Show me that sanctuary space, especially, when we cannot find that space in other places, I pray. (Silent Confession). Amen.

Assurance of Pardon: God knows us, God loves us, God forgives us. Let us assure one another of this truth: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven. Amen. 

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: God you say fear not, the implication being, because you are with us. Hold our hand, because we are afraid. But hold our hand, so we might walk into the word anyway we pray. Amen. 

Prayer of the Day/Dedication*: God, Protect the part of you that still winces at pain. Refuse to become too familiar with the tragedy. Our souls were made to stir. Stir us, Spirit. Amen.

Creative Moment: What are you the most afraid of? Can you call someone you trust about that fear? Can you take that fear to God? Can you even just take the first step of admitting that fear to yourself? Can you whisper it to yourself in the sunlight? Why is it so hard to confess a fear do you think?

Week 5: Rest Ch 12 Notes
Psalm 23:4b-6: Make me Rest
Psalm 121: I Lift My Eyes to the Hills
Acts 9:36-42: Dorcas/Tabitha Resurrected Did She want to Get Up?
Luke 8: 22-25: Jesus quiets the storm
Genesis 2:1-3: God’s first act with humankind is rest

Call to Worship (Breath Prayer)
God be with me (Breathe in)
God give me sabbath (Breathe out)

Call to Worship* (Breath Prayer)
We’ve done enough. (breathe in)
There is room for our rest. (breathe out)

Call to Confession: Come let us lay our confessions at the feet of Jesus.

Confession: God, we confess that we do not rest easily with you. We feel lazy or lonely. Sometimes we feel like rest is a waste of time, or like our bodies are not worth it, or like we can rest, but maybe not with you God. And we confess, that though your yoke is supposed to be easy Jesus, sometimes we manufacture reasons to make it hard. Help us God. Be the Lord of Sabbath to us Jesus. Refresh Holy Spirit. (Silent Confession). Amen.

Assurance of Pardon: We do not have to earn forgiveness, it is given as soon as we ask, so let us rejoice as we give one another the good news: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven. Amen.

Prayer of the day/Dedication. Jesus says come to me all those who are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. May we always find our rest in Jesus Christ. Amen.

Creative Moment: Find 15 extra Minutes to Rest this Week. Rest can mean being still, reading a book, taking a walk. Try to figure out what rest means for you (Its ok if that is tricky).

Week 6: Rage Ch 9 Notes
Mark 11:12-17 Cursing of Fig Tree & Flipping Tables
Psalm 13 How Long O Lord
Matthew 16: 21-23 Get Behind Me Satan
Psalm 8, Psalm 58: Break the Teeth of the Wicked, Imprecatory Prayer
Luke 1: 46-55 Magnificat

Call to Worship* (Breath Prayer)
How long. God? (breathe in)
I’m tired of hoping (breathe out)

Invitation to Confession: Confess, Rage, God can take your anger

Prayer of Confession: God I am angry. I confess that I cannot even comprehend all the injustice at the world, and yet it makes me want to throw things and scream and shake my fist. It makes me wonder. Why do we not go around and curse fig trees. Why does the church not celebrate flipping tables Sunday? I am so angry, sometimes that it wearies me, What should I do with this anger God? Help me to know please. (Silent Confession) Amen. 

Assurance of Pardon: Christ is for us, Nothing can separate us from the love of Christ, Know the truth of God’s love: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: Jesus Christ, we rage and we hope, we hope and we rage. Let us not lose our emotions, but keep our energy and somehow still keep our eye on you we pray. Amen. 

Creative Moment: Let out a Scream in a field, or read this article about it, or Look at Edvard Munch’s Scream Painting or read one of the Psalms above to yourself very dramatically! Call a Senator about something that you want to be changed and angry (but not shouting, be polite to the workers) or write a letter about something that needs to change ASAP: https://www.senate.gov/senators/senators-contact.htm

Week 7: Repair Ch 11 & Joy Ch. 13 Notes
Ezra 3:10-13: Joy and Sorrow of Repair Mixed
John 20:19-31: Disability & Thomas Resources
John 9:1-41: Man Born Blind Prayer Resource Here
Philippians 4:1-9 Joy and Love beyond understanding

Call to Worship* (Breath Prayer)
I make peace with myself (breathe in)
I know who I am (breathe out)

Call to Worship* (Breath Prayer)
God restore my expectations. (Breathe in)
I want more for us than expectations (Breathe out)

Invitation: Join the Holy Spirit, who inspires us to confess today

Prayer of Confession: Holy Spirit, come and inspire us today. Too often we think repair is all about seeing the cracks and the holes. We forget that repair work can be joyful and beautiful and awe-inspiring. Do you find scars beautiful Jesus? We confess that we do not. We confess, we do not even like confession! Be with us, inspire us, laugh with us, repair with us we pray. Amen.

Assurance of Pardon: Jesus says the word, and all is forgiven, and look it is so—let us say the joyful news: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven. 

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: God you give us the task to repair things not out of duty, but joy. Inspire in us that joy that is found in being made in any kind of health, and help us to separate that from perfectionism we pray. Amen.

Creative Moment: Do a Puzzle, Or Make a Collage.

Week 8: Memory Ch 14 Notes

Communion Recommended

Luke 24: 13-35 Story of Emmaus
Genesis 16:7-13 Hagar the God who Sees
1 Samuel 7:7-12: Samuel Erects Stones of help
Deuteronomy 6:4-9 Teach and Write so you remember

“It is queer and beautiful that some of us belong to a God who tells us to consume his body and blood in remembrance. What do the body and blood have to do with a memory” p. 67

Call to Worship (Breath Prayer) 
Do this in remembrance of Me (breathe in)
We Let us Re-Member You (breathe out)

Call to Worship (Breath Prayer)
We are Christ’s Body (breathe in)
We are Christ’s Blood (breathe out)

Call to Worship* (Breath Prayer)
This Body is good (breathe in)
I won’t abandon it (breathe out)

Invitation to Confession: Remember, you belong here, so you are allowed to give it all to God, come let us confess together.

Prayer of Confession: God we confess that we view memory making as a right of conquest or a competition, instead of opportunity to hear the stories that bind us together. Forgive us, Remember us to each other instead, we pray. Amen. 

Assurance of Pardon: God has taught us the good news, and continues to teach us how to forgive one another, so it is with joy we are able to practice what only Jesus can do so easily. Let us proclaim it: It Jesus Christ we are forgiven.

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: Let us go into the world remembering God, and listening for where God’s story might already be in the world. Amen. 

Communion Prayer: It is truly right to give our thanks and praise to you God, because you re-member your body for us. Making each one of us a living breathing piece artifact of your kin(g)dom. Breathing us into the embodied earth. Reminding us that Christ was a savior who put sweat equity into teaching, who put his very spit into teaching and indeed healing. Reminding us that We are attach our memories to things because we are an emobodied existence. How much more, does God remind us to take care of ourselves when he says this is my body broken for you, take and nourish yourselves with it. This is my blood spilled for a new covenant of hope and forgiveness, whenever you eat and drink it, you have a remembrance embodied until I come again. So we pray down your promised Holy Spirit onto these simply elements, to bless them, to make them holy and complete a meal as we need for our bodies and souls so that we might taste the kingdom on our tongues and be in communion with you and the saints as we pursue the world we need. Bless these as elements of your work we pray. Amen. 

Creative Moment: Find an important artifact and Spend a moment with it. Or take a moment to find one: a rock, a feather, a leaf, write a letter. Think about what makes an artifact and why. Make an artifact to commit to yourself that you are an embodied beloved of God’s and that you are going to touch it everyday this week to remind yourself of that. Put it in your car or office or bathroom so you remember to do it.

Week 9: Justice Ch. 10 & Liberation ch. 15 (no notes, because you probably should just reread this chapter) Notes

Week 9: Justice Ch. 10 & Liberation Ch 15
Amos 5:23-24 No false ceremonies, Justice 
Habakkuk 1:1-4 Come make justice
Matthew 11:28-30 My Yoke is Light
Exodus 10: 17-21 Justice for the widow and alien
Psalm 103:1-6 justice and freedom
Psalm 145:5-9 Justice 

More Justice passages: https://justiceco.org/resources/gods-heart-of-justice/scriptures-on-justice-mercy-oppression-and-freedom/

Call to Worship (Breath Prayer)
God wants justice (breathe in)
We get free together (breathe out)

Call to Worship (Breath Prayer)
Justice will roll like waters (breathe in)
Righteous like an everflowing stream (breathe out)

Call to Confession: We are being called to Justice, so confess yourself, because we all want to get there, together. 

Prayer of Confession: God we confess that we confuse freedom with justice. We think that it is just that we are free, and do not understand that true liberation will only come with complete justice for all of our siblings. Open our hearts and minds and spirits to hear from those who are on the margins: the poor, the marginalized, the voiceless, the voteless, the different, those who are not of our race, gender, sexuality.  Give us ears to hear, and melt our hearts so that we can all have grace towards one another we pray. And forgive us in the meantime. Amen.

Assurance of Pardon: Hear the good news, Jesus was all about forgiveness, Jesus forgave people from all walks of life, even unto the cross. All they had to do was ask. So we can stand and assure one another, as a community, of the good news; In Jesus Christ we are forgiven. 

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: Let us go into the world seeking justice that flows down like water and righteousness and liberation becomes like an ever-flowing stream. Amen.

Creative Moment: If identify as a White/CisPerson Follow someone on Social Media who is very different from you: a different gender, race or religious belief . Just listen, don’t comment. Digest. Think about what they say–maybe share their thoughts with comments such as “yes” or “Listen to this” or “Something to consider” be a Magnifier like Mary.

If you are Queer or a POC: Have you checked out The Nap Ministry of late or your accountability partner for relaxation (therapist/spouse/best friend)? Have you followed some of Tricia’s amazing advice of recent? Gentle reminder to check in with that if you haven’t. https://thenapministry.wordpress.com or @TheNapMinistry

*Cole Arthur Riley’s Writing, Instagram Account here

If you would like to support Cole Arthur Riley she has a venmo account available here her venmo is @colenae–she has a patreon available for only $5/$10/etc a month here. You can give one time for a year for $54! If you would like to support my writing I am funding my way through a Phd in Creative Writing in Theology here, but encourage you to support Cole Arthur Riley with venmo, book orders, etc. 1st.

If you want a word doc version of everything for easier formatting (ie copy and paste) please email me at Katyandtheword at gmail and I will send it to just title the email “This Here Flesh” you can do it before the series is finished and I will save it to send to you upon completion. Obviously you are free to use part/all of the series to fit your context; I hope I am keeping in the integrity of Cole’s work.


Cole Arthur Riley, This Here Flesh: Spirituality, Liberation, and the Stories That Make Us (New York: Convergent, 2022)

Available For Purchase Here

*Denotes Prayers directly written by Cole Arthur Riley from her Instagram site here

Praying for Summer

Praise you God, because from you all blessings flow

And some kind of summer beckons.

Different from the endless summer of last year, where we were all so lonely we could spit.

Different from the fall where promises of vaccines were hazy and masks were packed into book bags with lunches

and we held our breath.

Now after giving up all of my free time to digitally school my eldest, and truck my other two back and forth to school.

Now after a year of basically nothing but school (and thank God eventually church), no clubs, no friends, no activities.

After a winter of depression

And a spring of exhaustion

And a Post-Pandemic, which, maybe, sort a, might be starting,

but sure as anything hasn’t really become a reality yet….

–For India and Brazil, Lord hear our prayers–

A year of mostly rewardless schooling has ended, and we are finally able to send our students and teachers back with our thanks.

And Now…

Summer beckons, and God I hope you guide us through.

I hope you help us to wind our way through this time of huge transition

Because we have not yet begun to feel the aftershocks of all that is different in our lives.

And I keep hearing hints

Of mourning those we have lost and adjusting to what life is now

Of mass retirements, and considered quittings,

Of reprioritizations and reorganization.

And so, I’m praying that I can string together some pieces of summer

with ice cream

and sunshine

and water fights.

Just enough pieces of summer, to feed my soul.

Until I figure how the hell we are going to do the next good thing.

Give us summer we pray.


Please feel free to adapt/share/use with credit to Pastor Katy Stenta

Week 4 Psalm 23

The Message Psalm 23

Laughing Bird (Australian) Psalm 23 

The Lord is my Grandma

Call to Worship:

God is Good

All the Time

All the Time

God is Good

Let us praise, our God

Let us praise our God who is always Good.

Prayer of Confession: God, I know sometimes that goodness and mercy are chasing me because I’m distracted, or too hurried. I know too that it is hard to feel goodness and mercy when I am overwhelmed or in survival mode. Help me. Help me to see and understanding and feel the goodness and mercy that are already in my life. Teach me ways to cultivate these: with rest, nourishment and a practice of living out of abundance instead of scarcity. Teach me to be a Psalm 23 sheep I pray. (Silent Confession) Amen.

Assurance of Pardon: God loves you, you are forgiven. Let us tell one another this truth: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven.

1st Scripture Reading  Isaiah 40:9b-11

2nd Scripture Reading                                    Psalm 23:6

Prayer of Dedication: Thank you for chasing me God. As I go into the world, remind me to stop for a couple of minutes, so that I can feel your goodness and mercy wash over me. Remind me I pray. Amen.

Hymns: Amazing Grace, Savior Like a Shepherd Lead Us, Jesus Loves Me, If I but Trust in God to Guide Thee, Lord of Our Growing Years, Here I am Lord, God of the Sparrow, As a Deer Longs for the Stream, My Soul in Silence Waits for God, Any Psalm 23, Morning has Broken, Breathe on Me Breath of God

Psalm 23 Series

Feel free to use/adapt with credit to Pastor Katy Stenta

Psalm 23 Week 2 Psalm 23:4

The Message Psalm 23

Laughing Bird (Australian) Psalm 23 

The Lord is my Grandma

Call to Worship (Isaiah 40)

Have you not known, Have you not heard?

God is with us

When we need comfort, God will comfort us

Come, let us abide with God.

Prayer of Confession: (unison) God I confess, I am scared. Especially when evil surrounds me, even though I know your rod and staff are supporting me, I am afraid. I do not know whether to speak up or stay quiet in the midst of evil. I am uncertain at times if I should be standing firm or running away. And sometimes I find death to be very scary. Support me as I wrestle with these very real fears, I pray your Holy Shepherding Name. (Silent Confession) Amen

Assurance of Pardon: Hear the good news, God’s love is from everlasting to everlasting, ever available to support us even when our steps falter. Let us proclaim the good news: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven.

1st Scripture Reading  Isaiah 40:1-2, 21-24

2nd Scripture Reading                                     Psalm 23:4

Prayer of Dedication: God help me to remember that you walk with us in the shadow of the valley of death, for you have been there before and know what it entails. When I am afraid, remind me that you do not fear evil. Help us to be brave and comforted as we walk in the world today and everyday, we pray. Amen.

Hymns: It is Well with My Soul, Jesus Walked This Lonesome Valley, O Love How Deep How Broad How High, What Wondrous Love Is This, I love the Lord Who Heard My Cry

Psalm 23 Series

Feel free to use/adapt with credit to Pastor Katy Stenta

Psalm 23 Week 1

The Message Psalm 23

Laughing Bird (Australian) Psalm 23

The Lord is my Grandma

Call to Worship (based on Psalm 95:6-7)

Come, let us worship and bow down

Let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!

For he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture  

We are the sheep of God’s hand, come Let us Praise God!

Prayer of Confession: (unison) God I confess that sometimes I do not want to be a sheep. Sometimes it is hard for me to take direction, and I do not know if it is unwillingness, or ignorance or simply weariness that stands in my way. And yet you walk beside me, to comfort and protect me. Help me to accept you as my shepherd I pray. Amen (Silent Confession) Amen

Assurance of Pardon: Hear the good news, God promises to restore us, know the truth in your hearts: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven.

1st Scripture Reading Isaiah 40:29-31

2nd Scripture Reading                                     Psalm 23:1-3

Prayer of Dedication: God you know we entered here thirsty. Send the Holy Spirit out with us, to shepherd us, comfort us, and to quench us. Send us into the world refreshed by your Word and Holy Spirit we pray. Amen. 

Hymns: Create in me a Clean Heart, There is a a Balm in Gilead, Spirit of the Living God, Any version of Psalm 23

Psalm 23 Series

Feel free to use/adapt with credit to Pastor Katy Stenta

Summer Hebrews Series #5: Hebrews 11:1-16 [12:1-2; Matthew 8:5-10] for Narrative Lectionary (August 11, 2019?)

This week’s NL resources are a bit more “down-and-dirty” and less elaborated than usual. Vacation and one Sunday off due to heat (our two sanctuary window air conditioners were not going to be up to the 105 heat index that Sunday, especially with our older folks) means we are out of rhythm on our own use of the NL, but I am striving to keep these resources up-to-date for those using them.

We will not be providing resources for any of the three-week mini-series listed for NL for the tail end of the summer. Instead, we will move right into the Genesis cycle. The first set of these should be posted by mid-August.

Prayer of Confession from Hebrews 12:1-2                                                                      https://re-worship.blogspot.com/2017/01/prayer-of-confession-walking-with-god.html

Call to worship from Hebrews 11-12                                                                                          https://re-worship.blogspot.com/2013/07/call-to-worship-hebrews-11-12.html

Prayer of petition from Hebrews 11                                                                                                https://re-worship.blogspot.com/2013/07/prayer-hebrews-11.html

How to pray the Scriptures; prayer based on Hebrews 11:1 https://howtopraythescriptures.com/faith/how-to-pray-hebrews-11-1/

Service based on Hebrews 11:1-12:2 from Calvin Worship Symposium https://worship.calvin.edu/resources/resource-library/surrounded-by-a-great-cloud-of-witnesses

An order of worship around Hebrews 11: “With Every Good Thing Series – The Wonder of the Nature of Faith: David, Jesus and Hebrews 11” Also Calvin Worship Symposium https://worship.calvin.edu/resources/resource-library/with-every-good-thing-series-the-wonder-of-the-nature-of-faith-david-jesus-and-hebrews-11/

My own original liturgical pieces will be posted here when I get that far: https://1drv.ms/w/s!AuB3z496aTHTgaojI6BKhg7nNHbmlA


Hebrews 11:1 https://www.preachingtoday.com/illustrations/1998/july/4466.html

Hebrews 12:1 https://www.preachingtoday.com/illustrations/1998/april/2946.html



Having faith in God even when we can’t see him http://sermons-for-children.com/childrens-sermon-hebrews-11-1/

Trust as the theme of the children’s sermon https://www.ministrymatters.com/all/entry/4045/worship-for-kids-august-7-2016

Using the book The Little Prince to illustrate faith as an invisible thing that shapes our lives  http://worshipingwithchildren.blogspot.com/2013/07/year-c-proper-14-19th-sunday-in.html

The storybook of Faith the Cow tells of the faith-filled founding of Heifer International http://storypath.upsem.edu/lectionary-links-sunday-august-11-2013/

Object lesson using things that work in ways we cannot see/understand as a metaphor for faith https://sermons4kids.com/understand.html


Hebrews 11 https://www.google.com/search?q=images+hebrews+11&tbm=isch&source=univ&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwiLtZfxmOzjAhWBT98KHXwNAmcQsAR6BAgJEAE&biw=1805&bih=862

Hebrews 12 https://www.google.com/search?q=images+hebrews+12&tbm=isch&source=univ&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwiq49LrnuzjAhWCtVkKHYk7DWEQsAR6BAgJEAE&biw=1802&bih=797&dpr=0.75

HYMNS  https://hymnary.org/search?qu=HEbrews+11



Narrative Lectionary commentary on this passage-the power of the Word to evoke faith. https://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=4084

NL Podcast on this passage; apparently addresses the whole book/series…?http://www.workingpreacher.org/narrative_podcast.aspx?podcast_id=1160

The role of those who went before/all saints                                                      http://day1.org/5231-a_guiding_voice

Pulpit Fiction: Seeing and Living the Faith from Working Preacher http://www.workingpreacher.org/craft.aspx?m=4377&post=1587


Sermon by Rev. Anrew Ladwehr from the time of Watergate -Faith: The Unseen Power http://collections.carli.illinois.edu/cdm/ref/collection/uni_sermons/id/4973

Faith Amid the Fog http://collections.carli.illinois.edu/cdm/ref/collection/uni_sermons/id/4973

Audio of Bishop Robert Barron’s sermon from 2003: The “Leap” of Faith                https://www.wordonfire.org/resources/homily/walking-the-path-of-faith/635/    


Hebrews 11:1-3, 8-16 is in the RCL for Proper 14C/Ordinary 19C; see http://www.textweek.com/epistlesrevelation/hebrews11.htm for

Hebrews 11:29-12:2 is in the RCL for Proper 5C/Ordinary 20C and Holy Week Monday        https://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=1748

Working Preacher (RCL) Hebrews 11’s 2 statements about faith: https://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=2943

Working Preacher (RCL) Hebrews 11’s “honors list”                                                              https://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=2943

Summer Hebrews Series #4: Hebrews 9:1-14 [Matthew 12:1-6] for Narrative Lectionary (August 4, 2019?)


Featured image: https://wallpaper4god.com/en/background_hebrews-914/

Images of the Holy of Holies: https://www.google.com/search?q=free+images+holy+of+holies&tbm=isch&source=univ&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwiS-9jAp9rjAhXyhOAKHQH7AHMQsAR6BAgJEAE&biw=1821&bih=876

Images for Hebrews 9:1-14 https://www.google.com/search?biw=1821&bih=810&tbm=isch&sa=1&ei=3f8-XeGNEoyZ_QasxoiIBg&q=free+images+Hebrews+9%3A1-14&oq=free+images+Hebrews+9%3A1-14&gs_l=img.3…145936.146802..147479…0.0..0.101.427.4j1……0….1..gws-wiz-img.naJeXiW05Po&ved=0ahUKEwih8LndqNrjAhWMTN8KHSwjAmEQ4dUDCAY&uact=5

Images of opening the door https://www.google.com/search?q=images+bible+opening+the+door&tbm=isch&source=univ&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjH-rahqtrjAhWHWc0KHS8TCFQQsAR6BAgHEAE&biw=1821&bih=810   For a commentary using this image, see https://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=2514 (NOTE: The 2015 commentary has the same content.)

17th Century etching of the Tabernacle: http://pitts.emory.edu/dia/image_details.cfm?ID=121232&referrer=preachingandworship.org

My husband notes that the ark described here matches the one in Raiders of the Lost Ark… Synopsis of the movie at (page 39) of https://books.google.com/books?id=rGYEAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA39&lpg=PA39&dq=ark+of+the+covenant+boys+life&source=bl&ots=_7lDOWclm7&sig=ACfU3U3fX1oxMikrjtLjSkKp9E9hvQUxsw&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwj-s8vpu9rjAhXYLc0KHfW1AGwQ6AEwGnoECAkQAQ#v=onepage&q=ark&f=false


Offering Prayer: God of all power and grace: we have often been overwhelmed by the indifference of the world and have let it discourage us from the work of disciple making and world transforming to which you’ve called us. Remind us once more of the victory of Christ and the victory available to us. As we give our tithes and offerings, may we do so with the confidence of victors, knowing that in your love, grace, and compassion, you will have the last word. We pray this in the name of your Son, who bore our sins and who defeated our death. Amen. (Hebrews 9:11-14, 24-28) https://www.umcdiscipleship.org/resources/offertory-prayers-and-invitation-for-november-2018

Prayer Reflection: Who Could Love Us More?  (Very short, but the spacing seems crucial and is lost when I copy it here, so please go to website.) https://re-worship.blogspot.com/2012/10/prayer-reflection-hebrews-9-11-15.html

Original liturgical resources will be posted here when I get this far; I am behind since my church did not have services on 7/21 due to excessive heat. I hope to have these posted by Tuesday evening, 7/30. https://1drv.ms/w/s!AuB3z496aTHTgal1aLu-13ffpsmjdg

CHILDREN’S SERMON IDEAS. Note: This author of this resource usually advises shielding children from sacrificial images… http://worshipingwithchildren.blogspot.com/2015/10/year-b-proper-26-31st-sunday-in.html



EXEGETICAL RESOURCES (beginning with those most likely to yield themes for preaching)

Podcast intro to the Hebrews series from NL: http://download.luthersem.edu/media/working_preacher/narrative/185WPNarrative.mp3(NOTE: The 2015 podcast is the same.)

Preaching-oriented exposition of the structure of Hebrews 9 from Southwestern Baptist Seminary: http://preachingsource.com/sermon-structure/hebrews-9-1-14/

(Lots of potential themes in the discussion questions) Hebrews 9:1-14 Inductive Bible study with teaching points, cross-references and discussion questions from Moody Bible Institute grad who is serving in mission overseas. https://studyhebrews.com/hebrews9-1-14.html

Commentary on Hebrews 9:1-14 entitled “God’s Remedy for Guilt.” Uses biblical study tools from a substitutionary atonement perspective. Incl. discussion questions. https://bible.org/seriespage/lesson-25-god%E2%80%99s-remedy-guilt-hebrews-91-14

Bible study on Hebrews 9:1-14 focusing on OT background from folks from Fuller/Grace Communion International (formerly Worldwide Church of God). http://www.trinitystudycenter.com/hebrews/hebrews_9-1-14.php

Hebrews 9:1-14 (and beyond) Verse-by-verse word study and cross-reference from US Conference of Catholic Bishops http://www.usccb.org/bible/hebrews/9

Hebrews 9:1-14 sermons from a variety of preachers/denominations. Looks like summaries are available for free and you can also get a free trial. https://www.sermoncentral.com/sermons/sermons-about-hebrews-9-1-14/?keyword=Hebrews+9%3A1-14&rewrittenUrlType=scripture&searchPhrase=Hebrews%209%3A1-14&searchPhrase=Hebrews%209%3A1-14

Hebrews 9:1-14 sermon from Reformed Perspectives Magazine (free online weekly publication).  Uses Westminster Confession and Westminster Shorter and Larger Catechisms as its doctrinal standards. https://thirdmill.org/magazine/article.asp/link/https:%5E%5Ethirdmill.org%5Earticles%5Esco_lindsay%5Esco_lindsay.Heb9_1_14.html/at/Hebrews 9:1-14

Hebrews 9:1-14 sermon that focuses on bridging the gap between the culture/religion of the book of Hebrews and Christians today from widely published Bethlehem Baptist Seminary chancellor entitled “Purified to Serve the Living God.” https://www.desiringgod.org/messages/purified-to-serve-the-living-god

Commentary on Hebrews 9:11-14 deals with the pitfalls of the “Jesus is better” part of this passage. https://preachingandworship.org/api/lc/9415bb95879cb8f738940c8858a23b745d3f11ef8ff24

A Catholic take on Hebrews 9:11-14 and other blood sacrifice passages http://liturgy.slu.edu/BodyBloodB060318/theword_indepth.html

Other articles delving into the theme of atonement/sacrifice can be found at https://preachingandworship.org/search/Hebrews+9%3A1-14?pqid=2840196&page=2


Audio of 1973 Princeton Seminary sermon on Leviticus 16 and Hebrews 9 on the Yom Kippur practice of praying for the sins of the nation. http://commons.ptsem.edu/id/02074 For more on Yom Kippur and Atonement, see https://globalworship.tumblr.com/post/165885975740/yom-kippur-atonement

Video of 40 minute sermon from N. Boston Great Rock Church, a Calvary Chapel community, which is a non-denominational church movement focused on the inerrancy of the Bible and the expository teaching. Has roots in the Jesus movement. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SV9dBxK8jdA

Video of 36 minutes sermon from Pioneer Baptist Church entitled “A Clean Conscience.” https://sermons.faithlife.com/sermons/359815-a-clean-conscience-(hebrews-9:1-14)

Video of 45 minute teaching from on Hebrews 9:1-14 by Michael Rood (“A Rood Awakening/Shabbat Night Live”) from a Hebrew/Torah perspective. Entitled “The Last Will and Testament of the Earthly Temple.” (NOTE: Didn’t vet the whole video; this TV show teaching seemed interesting, but their overall doctrine includes a focus on 7th day Sabbath and calendar issues.) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XccN8UQRqlY

Commentary on Hebrews 9:11-14 (RCL for Proper 26B/Ordinary 31B/Pentecost 24-11/4/18) that includes consideration of v. 1-10; focuses on the Ark and on Jesus as the fulfilment/perfection. https://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=453

Resources for RCL (Hebrews 9:11-14)  http://www.textweek.com/epistlesrevelation/hebrews9a.htm




































Image above: https://www.gbcdecatur.org/sermons/BeyondVeilArk.html#powerpoint

Summer Hebrews Series #1-Hebrews 1:1-4 and John 1:1-5 (7/12/19?)

Featured image:  https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&source=images&cd=&ved=2ahUKEwiX8bqd6J3jAhXFZc0KHS7nCd0QjRx6BAgBEAU&url=http%3A%2F%2Frippleeffectdisciplines.com%2F5-7-15-god-actually-communicates-with-humans-hebrews-11-4%2F&psig=AOvVaw3UkhkTpk5YQrsx7Plp3ma9&ust=1562417316242334

Note: We are planning a “Christmas in July” for 7/28. In fact, Hebrews and John 1 are together in the RCL for Christmas; see resources below–and the incarnational themes for Hebrews could lead to a twinning of Christmas/Advent themes and Hebrews throughout this series.

INTRODUCTION  to Hebrews summer Narrative Lectionary series: https://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=4080

From the RCL, which also includes verses from chapter 2 in its pericope, this commentary answers the question “Why preach a series on Hebrews” and talks incarnation.  Also gives two illustrations, one from Kierkegaard and the other from The Man Which Mistook His Wife for a Hat and Other Clinical Tales. https://cep.calvinseminary.edu/sermon-starters/proper-22b/?type=lectionary_epistle

Book of Hebrews resources: http://www.textweek.com/epistlesrevelation/hebrews.htm



Opening prayer of adoration: https://re-worship.blogspot.com/2012/09/opening-prayer-hebrews-1-1-4.html

1:1-4 and 2:5-12 for two readers                                                                                                            https://re-worship.blogspot.com/2012/09/readers-theatre-hebrews-1-1-4-2-5-12.html

Original prayers:

Opening Prayer   by  Rev. Dr. Barb Hedges-Goettl; please give credit if using/adapting.

God, you have spoken, and you continue to speak, to your people.

Reveal Christ Jesus to us this day as your Son and heir.

In him, reveal to us your glory and your very self,

that we may be purified and sustained by him,

sharing in his life and light. In his name,

the name above all others, we pray, Amen.

CALL TO WORSHIP (from Hebrews 1 and John 1 The Message)                                                by Barb Hedges-Goettl; please give credit if using/adapting.

One: The Word came first.

Many: The Word was with God and the Word was God.

By his Son, God created the world in the beginning.

Everything was created through the Word.

Nothing—not one thing!—came into being without him

and it will all belong to the Son at the end.

The Son perfectly mirrors God.

He is stamped with God’s nature.

He holds everything together by what he says,

His Life is the Light to live by.                                                                                      

The Life-Light blazes out of the darkness

and the darkness cannot put it out.

ALL: THANKS BE TO GOD.              

RITE OF CONFESSION  by Barb Hedges-Goettl; please give credit if using/adapting.

*Call to Confession:

God sent Jesus to light our way, but at times we stumble about cursing the darkness instead of using the light that God provides, and so we seek God’s forgiveness.

*Prayer of Confession                                                                                        Reader O God, you give us glimpses of your light,                                                               but sometimes, instead of following you, we stumble around on our own.                        We accept poor imitations of your light.                                                                     We try to catch your light and hold it,                                                                      so that we do not have to always look to you.                                                                         You speak the words that give and sustain life,                                                                             but we listen to the noise around us instead.

Forgive us. Give us eyes to see and ears to listen. (Silent Confession)

*Assurance of Pardon (from Psalm 40, The Message)                                Pastor Barb                                                     When Jesus had cleansed us from our sins, he sat down in the place of honor              at the right hand of the majestic God in heaven. And so we give thanks and praise                 to God for the Good News:   In Jesus Christ, we are forgiven.



1:1-2  https://www.heartlight.org/powerpoint/905.html


OTHER IMAGES for bulletins/powerpoints




For preaching series on Hebrews: http://worshipingwithchildren.blogspot.com/2012/09/year-b-proper-22-27th-sunday-in.html

Remaining Faithful to Jesus: “The Neglected Gift” https://sermons4kids.com/neglected_gift.html

God’s proud parent speech https://www.episcopalchurch.org/sermons-that-work

CRAFT PROJECT/Sunday School:   By His Own Mighty Word He Holds the Universe Together http://www.sundayschoollessons.com/pent17kart.htm



Hymnary search at  https://hymnary.org/search?qu=Hebrews+1%3A1-4





The Lutheran Hymnal

Hebrews 1:06  Hark! Ten Thousand Harps and Voices.


At Digital Hymnal (midi files, guitar chords, karaoke files, projection text):

Memorizing scripture through song: Hebrews 1:1-3                  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5dWMHYUtmbI

Presbyterian Hymnal (1990)

331.1+3 Thanks to God Whose Word Was Written
255.4-6 Now Praise the Lord
327 O Word of God Incarnate
330 Deep in the Shadows of the Past
222.7 Psalm 103
319.2 Spirit
309 Of the Father’s Love Begotten
4 Creator of the Stars of Night
74 Jesus on the Mountain Peak
75 O Wondrous Sight, O Vision Fair
83 O Love, How Deep, How Broad, How High
133 All Glory Be to God on High
137.2 We All Believe in One True God
346.1 Christ, You Are the Fullness
474 O Splendor of God’s Glory Bright
10.4 On Jordan’s Bank the Baptist’s Cry
31.2 Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
36.2 In the Bleak Midwinter
41.2 O Come, All Ye Faithful
49.2 Once in Royal David’s City
52.2 Sheep Fast Asleep
54.3 From Heaven Above
55.5 That Boy-Child of Mary
57.4 The Snow Lay on the Ground
60.3 Silent Night, Holy Night
74.4 Jesus on the Mountain Peak
75.3 O Wondrous Sight, O Vision Fair
139.2 Come, Thou Almighty King
148.1 At the Name of Jesus
412.5 Eternal God, Whose Power Upholds
454 Blessed Jesus, at Your Word
485 To God Be the Glory
512.1 Living Word of God Eternal
41 O Come, All Ye Faithful
42 O Come, All Ye Faithful
141 A Hymn of Glory Let Us Sing
142 All Hail the Power of Jesus’ Name!
143 All Hail the Power of Jesus’ Name!
150 Come, Christians, Join to Sing
153 He Is King of Kings                                                                                                                      306 Fairest Lord Jesus
477 Ye Servants of God, Your Master Proclaim
566 Glory to God in the Highest (Gloria in Excelsis)
575.6 Glory to God in the Highest (Gloria in Excelsis)
133.3 All Glory Be to God on High
203.1 God of Mercy, God of Grace
263 Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise
412.5 Eternal God, Whose Power Upholds
474 O Splendor of God’s Glory Bright
519.4 Thee We Adore, O Hidden Savior, Thee
548.1+2 O Radiant Light, O Sun Divine
549.1 O Gladsome Light
550.1 O Light Whose Splendor Thrills
110.1 Christ Jesus Lay in Death’s Strong Bands
147 Blessing and Honor
151 Crown Him with Many Crowns
155 Rejoice, the Lord Is King
308.4 O Sing a Song of Bethlehem
466.3 O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing
154.3 Lord, Enthroned in Heavenly Splendor
341.1 Blessed Assurance, Jesus Is Mine!
492.1 Baptized in Water
133.2 All Glory Be to God on High
194.2 Peoples, Clap Your Hands!
148.3 At the Name of Jesus

4.3 Creator of the Stars of Night
19.4 To a Maid Engaged to Joseph
142.1 All Hail the Power of Jesus’ Name!
143.1 All Hail the Power of Jesus’ Name!
147.2 Blessing and Honor
148 At the Name of Jesus
260.2 A Mighty Fortress is Our God
310.2 Jesus, the Very Thought of Thee
311.2 We Meet You, O Christ
346.3 Christ, You Are the Fullness
371R Lift High the Cross
395.3 Have Mercy, Lord, on Me (Take Pity, Lord)
442.2 The Church’s One Foundation
466.2+4 O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing
477.1 Ye Servants of God, Your Master Proclaim
498.3 Child of Blessing, Child of Promise
500.3 Become to Us the Living Bread
504.1 Draw Us in the Spirit’s Tether
515.3 Now to Your Table Spread
539.1 Savior, Again to Thy Dear Name We Raise
548.2 O Radiant Light, O Sun DivineEXEGESIS

Christological questions from the passage: https://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=486

Brief overview of Hebrews & our passage; also includes John 1  http://montreal.anglican.org/comments/archive/zxmascm.shtml                                                 This same author also publishes his leftover, more technical word-study type notes Again still yet includes John 1. See http://montreal.anglican.org/comments/archive/zxmascl.shtml

Commentary from the passage’s use for RCL at Christmas focuses on  “What’s His Name,” allowing readers to listen in on God’s announcement of the name of his Son,  http://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=1479                                 At Christmas, the RCL also includes John 1:1-14, for that commentary see http://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=1523

Another commentary from the Christmas context; this one addresses the wisdom underpinnings of the passage, Jesus as Logos/logic,  and even mentions John 1! Also addresses Jesus as the anointed king. http://wwwstaff.murdoch.edu.au/~loader/BEpChristmasDay2.htm

This passage is also in the RCL for 22B (October, 2018), This Working Preacher commentary takes up the challenges of the NRSV’s inclusive language translation, which loses the concept of “Son of Man,” thus truncating some of the meaning of Hebrews’ discussion of incarnation. http://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=2276

This one addresses the concept of Jesus as trailblazer using Harriet Tubman as an example. Also touches on the problem of the NRSV’s lack of the phrase “Son of Man.”http://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=422

From the RCL context, this commentary introduces the book of Hebrews as well as discussing 1:1-4 (and 2:5-12). For chapter 1, it focuses on the word given the prophets, Christ as the Word, and the nature of the Son. http://wwwstaff.murdoch.edu.au/~loader/BEpPentecost19.html

Exhortation against lack of commitment; addresses 1;1-4 but continues through 2:12. http://www.crivoice.org/biblestudy/bbheb2.html

Hebrews as providing hope/the big picture (Christmas context) https://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=3517

Incarnation plus pre-existence and exaltation (Heb. 1:1-12 in Christmas context) https://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id

Christmas Reflection: Alone with the Stars                                         https://www.theologyofwork.org/the-high-calling/christmas-reflection-alone-stars


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