Friday after Easter 7

Psalmody
9The Ephraimites, armed | with the bow,*
         turned back on the day of | battle.

10They did not keep God’s | covenant,*
         but refused to walk according | to his law.

11They for- | got his works*
         and the wonders that he had | shown them.

12In the sight of their fathers he performed | wonders*
         in the land of Egypt,
in the | fields of Zoan.

13He divided the sea and let them | pass through it,*
         and made the waters stand | like a heap.

14In the daytime he led them | with a cloud,*
         and all the night with a | fiery light.

15He split rocks in the | wilderness*
         and gave them drink abundantly
as | from the deep.

16He made streams come out | of the rock*
         and caused waters to flow
down like | rivers.
         —Psalm 78:9–16

Additional Psalm: Psalm 110

Old Testament Reading:
Numbers 20:1–21
The Death of Miriam

1And the people of Israel, the whole congregation, came into the wilderness of Zin in the first month, and the people stayed in Kadesh. And Miriam died there and was buried there.

The Waters of Meribah

2Now there was no water for the congre-gation. And they assembled themselves together against Moses and against Aaron. 3And the people quarreled with Moses and said, “Would that we had perished when our brothers perished before the LORD! 4Why have you brought the assembly of the LORD into this wilderness, that we should die here, both we and our cattle? 5And why have you made us come up out of Egypt to bring us to this evil place? It is no place for grain or figs or vines or pomegranates, and there is no water to drink.” 6Then Moses and Aaron went from the presence of the assembly to the entrance of the tent of meeting and fell on their faces. And the glory of the LORD appeared to them, 7and the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 8“Take the staff, and assemble the congregation, you and Aaron your brother, and tell the rock before their eyes to yield its water. So you shall bring water out of the rock for them and give drink to the congregation and their cattle.” 9And Moses took the staff from before the LORD, as he commanded him.

Moses Strikes the Rock

10Then Moses and Aaron gathered the assembly together before the rock, and he said to them, “Hear now, you rebels: shall we bring water for you out of this rock?” 11And Moses lifted up his hand and struck the rock with his staff twice, and water came out abundantly, and the congregation drank, and their livestock. 12And the LORD said to Moses and Aaron, “Because you did not believe in me, to uphold me as holy in the eyes of the people of Israel, therefore you shall not bring this assembly into the land that I have given them.” 13These are the waters of Meribah, where the people of Israel quarreled with the LORD, and through them he showed himself holy.

Edom Refuses Passage

14Moses sent messengers from Kadesh to the king of Edom: “Thus says your brother Israel: You know all the hardship that we have met: 15how our fathers went down to Egypt, and we lived in Egypt a long time. And the Egyptians dealt harshly with us and our fathers. 16And when we cried to the LORD, he heard our voice and sent an angel and brought us out of Egypt. And here we are in Kadesh, a city on the edge of your territory. 17Please let us pass through your land. We will not pass through field or vineyard, or drink water from a well. We will go along the King’s Highway. We will not turn aside to the right hand or to the left until we have passed through your territory.” 18But Edom said to him, “You shall not pass through, lest I come out with the sword against you.” 19And the people of Israel said to him, “We will go up by the highway, and if we drink of your water, I and my livestock, then I will pay for it. Let me only pass through on foot, nothing more.” 20But he said, “You shall not pass through.” And Edom came out against them with a large army and with a strong force. 21Thus Edom refused to give Israel passage through his territory, so Israel turned away from him.

New Testament Reading: Luke 20:19–44
Paying Taxes to Caesar

19The scribes and the chief priests sought to lay hands on [Jesus] at that very hour, for they perceived that he had told this parable against them, but they feared the people. 20So they watched him and sent spies, who pretended to be sincere, that they might catch him in something he said, so as to deliver him up to the authority and jurisdiction of the governor. 21So they asked him, “Teacher, we know that you speak and teach rightly, and show no partiality, but truly teach the way of God. 22Is it lawful for us to give tribute to Caesar, or not?” 23But he perceived their craftiness, and said to them, 24“Show me a denarius. Whose likeness and inscription does it have?” They said, “Caesar’s.” 25He said to them, “Then render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” 26And they were not able in the presence of the people to catch him in what he said, but marveling at his answer they became silent.

Sadducees Ask About the Resurrection

27There came to him some Sadducees, those who deny that there is a resurrection, 28and they asked him a question, saying, “Teacher, Moses wrote for us that if a man’s brother dies, having a wife but no children, the man must take the widow and raise up offspring for his brother. 29Now there were seven brothers. The first took a wife, and died without children. 30And the second 31and the third took her, and likewise all seven left no children and died. 32Afterward the woman also died. 33In the resurrection, therefore, whose wife will the woman be? For the seven had her as wife.”

34And Jesus said to them, “The sons of this age marry and are given in marriage, 35but those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage, 36for they cannot die anymore, because they are equal to angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection. 37But that the dead are raised, even Moses showed, in the passage about the bush, where he calls the Lord the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob. 38Now he is not God of the dead, but of the living, for all live to him.” 39Then some of the scribes answered, “Teacher, you have spoken well.” 40For they no longer dared to ask him any question.

Whose Son Is the Christ?

41But he said to them, “How can they say that the Christ is David’s son? 42For David himself says in the Book of Psalms,

“‘The Lord said to my Lord,

Sit at my right hand,
         43until I make your enemies your footstool.’

44David thus calls him Lord, so how is he his son?”

Writing
There are some who have no hope that the resurrection can take place. They look upon dry bones and distrust that these bones can be clothed with flesh and grow again into life. Those who do not have faith in the resurrection from obedience should certainly have it from reason. For what does nature imitate daily if not our own resurrection? For through daily revolutions the temporal light itself seems to die, when the shades of night come upon it and that which was seen is drawn away, and daily it seems to rise again when the light that was taken away from the eyes with the repression of the night is restored. For through the cycles of the seasons we perceive that the trees lose the greenness of their leaves and cease from the production of fruits. And behold, suddenly, from a drying log, as it were, a kind of resurrection happens for we see leaves break forth, fruit grow large, and the whole tree become clothed with quickened beauty. But behold, I grant the resurrection, yet I seek the effect of the resurrection. For I believe that I shall rise again but I wish to hear of what nature I shall be. For I must know whether perhaps I shall rise in something else, subtle or ephemeral, or in the body in which I remain. But if I shall rise in an ephemeral body, then I shall not be the one who rises. For how is it true resurrection if the flesh cannot be true? Therefore, clear reasoning suggests that, if the flesh will not be true, without doubt the resurrection will not be true. So also, our Redeemer showed His hands and side to the disciples who doubted His resurrection He offered them His bones and flesh to handle, saying: “Handle and see: for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as you see me to have.”
         —Hugh of St. Victor

Hymnody
Christ sits at God’s right hand,
         His saving work complete,
To reign till ev’ry foe will lie
         Beneath His feet—
All that the Father planned,
         The Son sought to fulfill,
When first He said, “Lord, here am I
         To do Your will.”
         —Christ Sits at God’s Right Hand (LSB 564:1)

Prayer of the Day
Living God, Your almighty power is made known chiefly in showing mercy and pity. Grant us the fullness of Your grace to lay hold of Your promises and live forever in Your presence; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. (C85)

Suggested Reading from
the Book of Concord
Solid Declaration of the Formula
of Concord XI 45–52

By Rev. Michael Mayer

Lutheran Pastor of two small Lutheran Churches in rural SW Ontario.