July 18, 2021

The Power of Touch – Eighth Sunday after Pentecost

Passage: Mark 1:40-45

Welcome and Call to worship 

 

Hymns: 

-  “Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing”

-  “Immortal Invisible God Only Wise”

 

Prayer of Adoration and Confession and the Lord's Prayer   

 

Hymn:  “It’s so Sweet to Trust in Jesus”

 

Scripture Readings: Mark 1:40-45

 

Sermon:  The Power of Touch

 

Hymn:  “I need Thee Every Hour”

 

Announcements 

 

Prayers of Thanksgiving and Intercession  

 

Hymn:  “And Can it Be”

 

Commissioning and Benediction: 

-   “Go Now in Peace”

 

 

Announcements:

Next Sunday, July 25th, we will worship with Presbyterians in the Synod of Québec and Eastern Ontario using the Synod online worship service.  

 

St. Paul’s Winchester Session will meet on Thursday July 22 at 6:30 pm. in St. Paul’s. 

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Sermon Outline 

God’s Healing Touch 

Mark 1:40 – 45 

 

One of the results of the three years Korean war which ended in 1953, was a large number of orphans, ages 0 to 2. The orphanages were jam-packed and there was no possibility for the workers to adequately care for all of the children.

The death rate for children in orphan’s homes was extremely high.

Quite by accident, some staff members of one of the orphanages discovered a way to lower the death rate among the children. They found out that those infants whom they touched for even a short period of time every day, had a higher survival rate. They discovered the human need for touch.

 

In our Gospel story we see how Jesus made an incredible difference in a man’s life. Jesus ministered to this man in need, and still doing the same today.

 

Leprosy is a common term applied to a variety of symptoms.

 

The symptoms generally appear three to five years after a person is infected with the bacteria that cause the disease. The symptoms include:

  • Severe Muscle pain.
  • Skin hardness and dryness.
  • Loss of fingers and toes.
  • Eye problems which lead to blindness.
  • Joint pain.

 

For the Hebrews this was a serious illness. According to the Law, people who have this illness are unclean. As a consequence, unfit to worship God.

 

Because of this people infected with leprosy were isolated from the rest of the community. Social pain added to their physical pain.

 

But Jesus did not treat people based on their appearance or status. He stretched out his hand and touched him, and said to him, “Be made clean!”. Immediately the leprosy left him, and he was made clean.

 

We too, many times we appreciate and desire touch in our lives. The Gospel today invites us to follow the example of the leper and ask Jesus to touch our lives and heal us. Jesus will never say no to our request.

 

Open your heart to God. Speak with him, share with God your need to be healed, whether spiritually or physically, allow His love to touch your life wherever that healing touch is needed.

 

Jesus invites us to come to Him now, trust that He will touch your life in ways that you have never experienced before.

 

Just trust him. Amen.