Bible Study: The Divine Service: The Service of the Sacrament- The Preface

February 21, 2016


The Service of the Sacrament The Preface and Proper Preface

  •   How does everything that has taken place so far in the service compare to what will come?

  •   I mentioned last week that ancient church had a practice relating to the unbaptized in their midst. How did that confess what they believed about the Holy Communion?

  •   What is the congregation’s posture now, and for how long will it remain?

1. The Preface

  1. What does this word mean?

    1. A foreword, or introduction

    2. Prefacing the Holy Communion

  2. What are the parts?

    1. The salutation (remember our previous discussion?)

    2. The prefatory sentences (preface and proper preface)

    3. The Sanctus

  3. The Salutation

i. What is the meaning of the Salutation at this point in the service?

  1. The mutual prayer of pastor and people

  2. Asking for devotion and attention focused on the sacrament to


d. The Prefatory Sentences

i. What are they?
1. What is their significance?

  1. “Lift up your hearts”

    1. It gives direction to our devotion

    2. We think of nothing earthly but only the physical, saving presence of God in our midst

  2. “Let us give thanks unto the Lord our God”

    1. With hearts lifted up, we do nothing but give thanks

      and praise to God

    2. What does “meet and right” mean?

1. Fitting and good

2. The Proper Preface
a. What is the nature of this prayer? (What kind of prayer is it?)

i. It’s a prayer of thanksgiving

  1. For Christ giving of His body and blood in the sacrament

  2. For other things according to the season of the church year

    1. Why is this important?

    2. It brings the theme of the day/season into unity with the gifts of the

      Holy Communion, and allows us to see how gifts expounded in our

      specific texts are given here in the flesh

b. What is the conclusion of the Preface?

  1. What does this teach us about the praise we offer God now?

  2. About the communion we have with God now?

3. The Sanctus
a. What does “sanctus” mean?

i. Holy
ii. Essentially the same word as “saint”

b. HowdoesisconnectwiththePreface?
i. It is the conclusion and climax of our prayer of thanksgiving

c. What are the two divisions of the hymn?

  1. The Words of angels

    1. From Isaiah 6

    2. Sung by Seraphim before the throne of God

  2. The words of the people

    1. From Matt 18. (quoted from Psalm 118)

    2. Sung by the people at the triumphal entry

    3. “Hosanna” means “Save, I pray”

  3. How does this fulfill, “Heaven and earth are full of thy glory”?

    1. The praise from heaven in the angel’s words

    2. The praise from earth, in the people’s words

  4. How does this fulfill, “In all times and in all places”?

1. Again, heaven and earth, round the world constantly sing the

praises of God
Closing Prayer: Prayer before communing (Inside cover of hymnal)

*Notes taken from An Explanation of the Common Service, and The Lutheran Liturgy 

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