As We Gather 

Flocks of sheep can number in the hundreds or even thousands. An annual trek from winter quarters to summer pastures and back again at a location in rural Idaho consistently draws hundreds of spectators to a location where the sheep must cross a major highway to reach their destination. Keeping track of two or three thousand sheep on the move is quite a task! Jesus, our Good Shepherd, knows how to care for not just thousands but millions of His sheeplike people. The prophet Isaiah says of the Lord God that He “will tend His flock like a shepherd” (40:11). Assured that we are part of His flock through faith in Christ, we travel through life following the guidance of our caring Shepherd!

Family Room & Children Activity Bags- Children Activity Bags- We value children in our worship services. If needed, there is a family room available for families with children. The family room has a diaper changing table, a closed-circuit TV to watch the worship service, toys and books for children. The family room is located across from the kitchen in the long hallway, the first door on the right, just past the bathrooms. There are “King’s Kids” bags with activities for children to help them worship. They are near the usher’s station on a small rack. Please return the bag to the rack after the service.

Holy Communion- The Scripture teaches the Lord’s Supper is a precious gift of God in which Christ gives us His true body and blood (in a miraculous way), together with the bread and wine, for the forgiveness of our sins and the strengthening of our faith. Because the Bible teaches that this Sacrament may also be spiritually harmful if misused the LCMS ordinarily communes only those who have been instructed in the teachings of our church and who have confessed their faith in these teachings. Please speak to Pastor Ralph before the service if you have a question about this. For those who prefer a non-alcoholic alternative, there is grape juice at the center of each tray. Those not receiving the Sacrament, including children, are invited to come to the altar, cross their arms over their chest, and receive a special blessing.

Clinging to the Word  Conquers “…there is no other way or counsel on earth to get rid of all kinds of temptations than this: that a man cast all his cares upon God, take Him at His Word of grace, hold fast to it and not it be taken from him in any way. Whoever does this can be satisfied, whether he prospers or fails, lives or dies. And in the end he can also stand and must succeed against all devils, the world and evil. This is the way, I feel, to magnify the dear Word and to credit it with much greater power than the power of all angels and men. And this is the way Paul magnifies it in Romans 1: 16. The Gospel, he says, “is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth.” What Luther Says #4745

Fourth Sunday of Easter

April 21, 2024


Opening Hymn                        Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing           LSB 686

Invocation, Confession and Absolution     (John 12:26; Ephesians 4:15; Psalm 25:1–3, 5, 10; 106:48)

P:   We gather in the name and at the invitation of our great and gracious triune God;

C:   In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

P: Jesus said: “If anyone serves Me, he must follow Me; and where I am, there will My servant be also. If anyone serves Me, the Father will honor him.”

C: Speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into Him who is the head, into Christ.

P: To You, O Lord, I lift up my soul. O my God, in You I trust.

C: Indeed, none who wait for You shall be put to shame.

P: Lead me in Your truth and teach me, for You are the God of my salvation.

C: All the paths of the Lord are steadfast love and faithfulness, for those who keep His covenant and His testimonies.

P: Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, from everlasting to everlasting!

C: And let all the people say, “Amen!” Praise the Lord!

P: Let us confess our sins to God, our Father.

C: O Lord God Almighty, we confess that we are sinful human beings by nature and by deed. We have not put You first at all times. We have not kept our thoughts, words, and deeds pure and honorable. We have sinned in ways we know and in ways we do not even recognize. We have not honored those in authority and have not without reservation encouraged them. We have not completely put the best construction on all things and on all people. Have mercy on us, O Lord. Forgive us all our sins, and finally by Your grace, bring us to everlasting life. Amen.

P: The almighty and merciful Lord grant us pardon, forgiveness, and remission of all our sins. As a called and ordained servant of Christ and by His authority, I forgive you all your sins in the name of the Father and of the ✠ Son and of the Holy Spirit.

C:   Amen. 

Hymn of Proclamation           The Lord’s My Shepherd, I’ll Not Want           LSB 710

Prayer of the Day

All:   Risen and ascended Lord, You are the Good Shepherd. You lay down Your life for the sheep; they are Yours. Empower Your church to reach every sheep that belongs to You and to give witness until You have brought all Your sheep into one fold; for You live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

First Reading   (Peter and John are brought before the Jerusalem Council.)     Acts 4:1–13

The priests and the captain of the temple guard and the Sadducees came up to Peter and John while they were speaking to the people. 2 They were greatly disturbed because the apostles were teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection of the dead. 3 They seized Peter and John, and because it was evening, they put them in jail until the next day. 4 But many who heard the message believed, and the number of men grew to about five thousand. 5 The next day the rulers, elders and teachers of the law met in Jerusalem. 6 Annas the high priest was there, and so were Caiaphas, John, Alexander and the other men of the high priest’s family. 7 They had Peter and John brought before them and began to question them: “By what power or what name did you do this?” 8 Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them: “Rulers and elders of the people! 9 If we are being called to account today for an act of kindness shown to a cripple and are asked how he was healed, 10 then know this, you and all the people of Israel: It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed. 11 He is “ ‘the stone you builders rejected, which has become the capstone.’12 Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.” 13 When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus. 

NT  Lesson  (Followers of Christ are called to love in deed and in truth.)    1 John 3:16–24

This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers. 17 If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? 18 Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth. 19 This then is how we know that we belong to the truth, and how we set our hearts at rest in his presence 20 whenever our hearts condemn us. For God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything. 21 Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God 22 and receive from him anything we ask, because we obey his commands and do what pleases him. 

23 And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us. 24 Those who obey his commands live in him, and he in them. And this is how we know that he lives in us: We know it by the Spirit he gave us.

Gospel Lesson                 (One of the many “I am” claims of Jesus)             John 10:11–18

“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12 The hired hand is not the shepherd who owns the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. 13 The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep. 14 “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— 15 just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep. 16 I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. 17 The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life—only to take it up again. 18 No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.”

Message Song                                  Lead On Good Shepherd 

Well, I’ve been turned ’round      But I’ve never been lost

Seen the water get troubled      But we walked across

When my knees were shaking      You held my hand

Turning my problems     To a promised land

      Chorus                  Lead on, Good Shepherd    I’ll follow all my days

There ain’t nothing sweeter      Than to watch You make a way

You’ve walked me through the valley     But You never steered me wrong

So lead on good shepherd      Lead on

Seen some mighty deep canyons      That You brought me through

Seen some mighty big mountains      That just up and moved

Glory, glory hallelujah      Yeah, that’s my song

              Walking with my Father      Into the great unknown      Chorus

                Bridge:      Step by step, day by day     Lead me on, Lord I pray 

     Road gets dark, walk by faith      Lead on, good shepherd.        Repeat then Chorus

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Message                                             Jesus, Our Good Shepherd

  1. Loves by ___________________________ His life for the sheep.
  1. Loves by leading His sheep to _____________________________     and _____________________________            .
  1. Love by leading us to ___________________     in which all _____________________        have ceased!


The First Article

P: As our Good Shepherd leads us, even so our heavenly Father hears the prayers of His people. Assured of His fatherly care, let us speak together the words of the Apostles’ Creed regarding the First Person of the Holy Trinity.

C: I believe in God, the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth.

P: What does this mean?

C: I believe that God has made me and all creatures; that He has given me my body and soul, eyes, ears, and all my members, my reason and all my senses, and still takes care of them.  He also gives me clothing and shoes, food and drink, house and home, wife and children, land, animals, and all I have. He richly and daily provides me with all that I need to support this body and life. He defends me against all danger and guards and protects me from all evil. All this He does only out of fatherly, divine goodness and mercy, without any merit or worthiness in me. For all this it is my duty to thank and praise, serve and obey Him. This is most certainly true.


Offertory                       God Loved the World So That He Gave           LSB 571  vs 1, 6

Prayers of the Church  

 After each petition:

 P:  Lord, in your mercy,

 C:  hear our prayer.

The Lord’s Prayer

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name, Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven; give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen.

The Lord’s Supper

Preface                                                                       page 160 in the hymnal

P:  The Lord be with you.

C:  And also with you.

P:   Lift up your hearts.

C:  We lift them to the Lord.

P:   Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

C:   It is right to give Him thanks and praise.

P:   It is truly good, right, and salutary …. And ever more praising You and singing:

Sanctus — Holy, Holy, Holy                                         page 161 in the hymnal

C:  Holy, holy, holy Lord God of pow’r and might: Heaven and earth are full of Your glory. Hosanna. Hosanna. Hosanna in the highest.  Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest.

The Words of Institution    (Jesus Institutes the Lord’s Supper)

Pax DominiThe Peace of the Lord                                               page 163 in the hymnal

P:   The peace of the Lord be with you always.C:   ♪ Amen.

Agnus Dei – Lamb of God                                                              page 163 in the hymnal

C:  Lamb of God, You take away the sin of the world; have mercy on us.

         Lamb of God, You take away the sin of the world; have mercy on us.

         Lamb of God, You take away the sin of the world; grant us peace.

Distribution of Communion

Distribution Hymn                           Great Is Thy Faithfulness                         LSB 809

Post Communion Canticle                                                               page 164 in the hymnal

C:  Thank the Lord and sing His praise; tell ev’ryone what He has done.  Let all who seek the Lord rejoice and proudly bear His name.  He recalls His promises and leads His people forth in joy with shouts of thanksgiving. Alleluia, alleluia

Post Communion Thanksgiving

AllGracious and eternal God, we thank You for having fed us with the body and blood of our Lord Jesus. Grant that the bread of life and blood of Christ that has been shared and received in this blessed Meal be for us that life-giving food that sustains us on our earthly journeys as we serve You all our days; through the same Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen.


P:   Go out into the world in peace, have courage, hold to what is good, return no person evil for evil, strengthen the fainthearted, support the weak, help the suffering, honor all people, love and serve the Lord, rejoicing in the power of the Holy Spirit. The almighty God—the Father, the ✠ Son, and the Holy Spirit—bless you.

C:   Amen.Sending Hymn                             O Jesus, King Most Wonderful                         LSB 554



P:   Go in peace as you serve our living Lord.

C:   Thanks be to God.