Lessons                                                                       Bread of Life                                                     19 September 2020

Isaiah 55:6–9

6“Seek the Lord while he may be found;

call upon him while he is near;

7let the wicked forsake his way,

and the unrighteous man his thoughts;

let him return to the Lord, that he may have compassion on him,

and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.

8For my thoughts are not your thoughts,

neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.

9For as the heavens are higher than the earth,

so are my ways higher than your ways

and my thoughts than your thoughts.”


Psalm 27:1-9

1The Lord is my light and my salvation;

          whom | shall I fear?*

The Lord is the stronghold of my life;

          of whom shall I | be afraid?

2When evildoers assail me

          to eat | up my flesh,*

my adversaries and foes,

          it is they who stum- | ble and fall.

3Though an army encamp against me,

          my heart | shall not fear;*

though war arise against me,

          yet I will be | confident.

4One thing have I asked of the Lord,

          that will I seek | after:*

that I may dwell in the house of the Lord

          all the days of my life,

          to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord

          and to inquire in his | temple.

5For he will hide me in his shelter

          in the day of | trouble;*

he will conceal me under the cover of his tent;

          he will lift me high up- | on a rock.

6And now my head shall be lifted up

          above my enemies all around me,

          and I will offer in his tent

          sacrifices with | shouts of joy;*

I will sing and make melody | to the Lord.

7Hear, O Lord, when I | cry aloud;*

          be gracious to me and | answer me!

8You have said, | “Seek my face.”*

My heart says to you,

          “Your face, Lord, | do I seek.”

          9Hide not your face from me.

Turn not your servant away in | anger,*

          O you who have been my help.

Cast me not off; forsake me not,

          O God of my sal- | vation!

Philippians 1:12–14, 19–30

          12I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel, 13so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard and to all the rest that my imprisonment is for Christ. 14And most of the brothers, having become confident in the Lord by my imprisonment, are much more bold to speak the word without fear. . . .

          19for I know that through your prayers and the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ this will turn out for my deliverance, 20as it is my eager expectation and hope that I will not be at all ashamed, but that with full courage now as always Christ will be honored in my body, whether by life or by death. 21For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. 22If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me. Yet which I shall choose I cannot tell. 23I am hard pressed between the two. My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better. 24But to remain in the flesh is more necessary on your account. 25Convinced of this, I know that I will remain and continue with you all, for your progress and joy in the faith, 26so that in me you may have ample cause to glory in Christ Jesus, because of my coming to you again.

          27Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, 28and not frightened in anything by your opponents. This is a clear sign to them of their destruction, but of your salvation, and that from God. 29For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake, 30engaged in the same conflict that you saw I had and now hear that I still have.

Matthew 20:1–16

          1[Jesus said:] “The kingdom of heaven is like a master of a house who went out early in the morning to hire laborers for his vineyard. 2After agreeing with the laborers for a denarius a day, he sent them into his vineyard. 3And going out about the third hour he saw others standing idle in the marketplace, 4and to them he said, ‘You go into the vineyard too, and whatever is right I will give you.’ 5So they went. Going out again about the sixth hour and the ninth hour, he did the same. 6And about the eleventh hour he went out and found others standing. And he said to them, ‘Why do you stand here idle all day?’ 7They said to him, ‘Because no one has hired us.’ He said to them, ‘You go into the vineyard too.’ 8And when evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his foreman, ‘Call the laborers and pay them their wages, beginning with the last, up to the first.’ 9And when those hired about the eleventh hour came, each of them received a denarius. 10Now when those hired first came, they thought they would receive more, but each of them also received a denarius. 11And on receiving it they grumbled at the master of the house, 12saying, ‘These last worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the day and the scorching heat.’ 13But he replied to one of them, ‘Friend, I am doing you no wrong. Did you not agree with me for a denarius? 14Take what belongs to you and go. I choose to give to this last worker as I give to you. 15Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or do you begrudge my generosity?’ 16So the last will be first, and the first last.”