Liturgy Lesson: October 13, 2019
Call to Worship: Psalm 98
Prayer of invocation
Choral Introit: I Will Praise You, O Lord (CPC Kids Choir)
Hymn of Adoration: Praise to the Lord, the Almighty (#53)
Confession: Psalm 51:1-12
Assurance of Pardon: Titus 3:3-6
Hymn of Assurance: Yet Not I, But Through Christ in Me
Reading of the Word: Luke 12:49-59
Sermon: Rev. Eric Irwin
Tithes & Offerings
Supper: Living Waters; Come, Ye Sinners, Poor and Wretched
Closing Hymn: There is a Hope
Hey kids! For this week’s lessons, I’ve prepared a pop quiz. Don’t worry, it’s simple multiple choice and will not affect your grade. Good luck.
1. Christian worship should feel like…
a. A concert hall
b. A lecture hall
c. A banquet hall
2. The role of a musician in church is…
a. A Celebrity
b. An Artist
c. A Servant
3. The most important thing about hymns/songs for worship is…
a. The truth of the words
b. The beauty of the music
4. Music in church should encourage…
5. The main attraction in church services should be…
a. The music
b. The sermon
(Answer key at end of lesson. HINT: It’s the same letter for all 5 questions!)
Words and Music by Kristyn Getty and Ed Cash
“Are you thirsty? Are you empty?
Come and drink these living waters
Love, forgiveness, vast and boundless
Christ, He is our living waters.”
Scientists and space explorers share a mantra. Those who study this planet and search for life on others know that “water is the source of all life.” Water is a theme that bookends the entire story of the Bible, In the beginning of creation the spirit of God was “hovering over the waters” (Gen. 1:2), and at the end of all time we have a river of life that flows from the city of God and brings healing to the nations (Rev. 22:1-2). Water is also one of the central metaphors used to describe the Christian journey. The Israelites’ salvation from slavery came from “passing through the waters,” and in the wilderness they were sustained by “water from the rock.” In the New Testament, sinners are baptized with water as a symbol of new life, and Jesus offers water that quenches all thirst. Indeed, the water he gives becomes “a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” How awesome to consider that the living waters are found streaming from the roots of a blood-stained tree on a lonely hill, called “the place of the Skull.” This is a miraculous place where life flows from death, and a grave holds an eternal spring.
This wonderful new hymn celebrates all these truths and distills them into delightfully short and simple phrases, which are set to an up-tempo, folksy tune. This is a clear, clean, and refreshing song, designed to go down easy. Gulp! Aaaaaah!
Yet Not I, But Through Christ in Me
Words and Music by Jonny Robinson, Michael Farren, and Rich Thompson, 2018
“I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” (Gal. 2:20)
This hymn comes to us from City Alight ministries down in Australia. It has, perhaps, the most grammatically complex title I’ve come across in some time. John Gilmore, a music pastor in Colorado Springs tells a great story that helps clarify both the title and the content for us:
“Not long ago I let my barely three-year-old son drive the car. None of the other drivers on the road seemed to find it odd. No one seemed concerned. Most smiled and laughed along as my little boy veered around corners with reckless abandon. With his dad riding shotgun and filming the entire journey that little boy got a taste for the good, “grown-up” life he so yearns for. That day he got to be a “big boy” and drive the car all by himself.
Caveat: although he handled the wheel, I handled the accelerator. Although it was a legitimate engine-powered car it was only half the size. It was a one-way road with a track to fix the car in the lane and there were a bevy of personnel on hand to chaperone a steady flow of underage drivers in their quest to prove themselves behind the wheel. Thank-you Disneyland for providing a dream-come-true for this little boy.
My son drove the car by himself, yet not on his own, but through Dad at his side. He doesn’t fully understand that. All he knows is the joy, the freedom, and the accomplishment. Something completely out of reach became a reality. He took a gas-sputtering machine on a cruise through town. Pure bliss.
How often do we take for granted or forget, or get distracted from the reality that every blessing that is ours is not born of us, but is instead a gift? We can’t reach the pedal but still the car heaves forward. We’d be off the course in a moment if not for the guides. We’d be outside the park looking in longingly if not for the price paid for admission.
As the Scriptures remind us again and again, true joy, righteousness, freedom, peace, hope – true life! – are ours, yet not from us. We have been “crucified with Christ” and yet we live. And this life with all its blessing is ours not because we earned it but because it was earned for us. The power that arises out of weakness? It is not ours but Christ in us. The rejoicing amidst the sorrow? It is not from us but from Christ who provides it. That light leading us through the darkness? It does not emanate from us – it goes before us. If we should we possess hope in the face of death it is only because Christ has accomplished on the cross what no man could accomplish. The debt that was ours is paid by Him, fully and finally. Sin is defeated and the race will be completed. We will cross the finish line and shout ‘I did it! Yet, not I but through Christ in me!'”
* Answers: C for all of them!