Hear, O My People!
A. The decree of the LORD
1. Celebrate the life of God and his people (0-5a)
0 For the director of music. According to <gittith.> Of Asaph.
1 Sing for joy to God our strength; shout aloud to the God of Jacob!
2 Begin the music, strike the tambourine, play the melodious harp and lyre.
3 Sound the ram’s horn at the New Moon, and when the moon is full, on the day of our Feast;
4 this is a decree for Israel, an ordinance of the God of Jacob.
5 He established it as a statute for Joseph when he went out against Egypt,
2. Listen to the LORD’s prophecy and live accordingly (5b-14)
where we heard a language we did not understand.
6 He says, “I removed the burden from their shoulders; their hands were set free from the basket.
7 In your distress you called and I rescued you, I answered you out of a thundercloud; I tested you at the waters of Meribah. <Selah>
8 “Hear, O my people, and I will warn you– if you would but listen to me, O Israel!
9 You shall have no foreign god among you; you shall not bow down to an alien god.
10 I am the LORD your God, who brought you up out of Egypt. Open wide your mouth and I will fill it.
11 “But my people would not listen to me; Israel would not submit to me.
12 So I gave them over to their stubborn hearts to follow their own devices.
13 “If my people would but listen to me, if Israel would follow my ways,
14 how quickly would I subdue their enemies and turn my hand against their foes!
B. The joy of living in the presence of the LORD (15, 16)
53 Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. 56 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in them. 57 Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me. …63 The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you—they are full of the Spirit and life.
None of us can know Jesus or believe in him without the help of the Holy Spirit. Because of our sinful nature, we easily lose sight of the fact that Jesus loves us and we fail to love each other. Through the work of the Holy Spirit, let us remember once again that Jesus died for us. We have been gathered together to remember Jesus’ death on our behalf, to encourage each other, and to share this good news with the world. As we are changed by the Holy Spirit and grow through our relationships with one another, let us strive to become a unique part of the Body of Christ.
1. What have you been taught about the church? What is the church to you?
2. How does the Holy Spirit help us grow?