Last Sunday of the Church Year 2018November25

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"Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour."

Hymn of the day:

Wake, Awake, for Night is Flying is as specific to the Last Sunday of the Church Year as is any hymn to any particular Sunday.  Along with How Lovely Shines the Morning Star it is written by the Lutheran Pastor Phillip Nicolai (1599). These hymns are lovingly referred to as the King and Queen of the Chorales, with Wachet auf (Wake, Awake…) being the King. You will hear it in various arrangements associated with the Christian wedding.

Beyond its clear confession of Christ’s return, it entails some beautiful hidden gems.  Each stanza is written in the shape of a chalice, alluding to the Christ and the host of heaven who join us in the Lord’s Supper. The German original contains three initials at the beginning of each stanza: 1 – W, 2 – Z, and 3 – G. These correspond to the title (Graf zu Waldeck, Count of Waldeck) of Count Wilhelm Ernst a student of Nicolai’s who died a year before. The hymn’s specific occasion for writing was a horrible plague that claimed thousands with as many as 30 people being buried daily. Their committals were said to be in view of Nicolai from his office window. Thus it serves as a comfort to the dying and their families, causing it to be appropriately not just at weddings but also funerals.

It is based primarily on Matthew 25; the parable of the wise and foolish virgins.  Earlier translations both in TLH and LW missed the reference to the Lord’s Supper in stanza two (Das Abendmahl).  LSB has rightly restored it.  The hymn makes the text seen to its hearers and leads one from the beckoning of the Word of God to the Supper to full participation with Christ and all the saints in heaven.   (Pastor Adrian Sherrill for Logia Online)

November verses to remember:

November 4 – Romans 1:16 – “I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone who believes.”

November 11 – Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.”

November 18 – Psalm 118:24 “This is the day that the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.”

November 25 – John 14:6 – “I AM the way, the truth, and the life.  No man comes to the Father but by Me.”

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