Preparation for Worship for the Lord’s Day, April 23, 2017

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Worthy are you, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they existed and were created.” This is the song of the twenty-four elders in Revelation 4:11. It underscores an important biblical theme, that, of the reasons God is to be glorified among his creatures is that is He the sovereign Creator of all that is. On the heels of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, this truth points forward to the new heavens and new earth, when God unites heaven and earth and dwells with His creatures that he has Redeemed through the death and resurrection of the first-begotten from the dead, our Lord Jesus. But for us as we live day by day in this fallen world, we ought to still glorify and praise God simply because there is something rather than nothing. We ought to ascribe to him honor and power in the wonder and goodness of all that has created (though that creation is now marred by the fall and the curse). In our own existence as sentient creatures, we ought especially to return to our Creator the glory due His Name. And as those who are redeemed by the blood of Christ, who have been reconciled to this Creator, it is only right that we worship him with our whole heart and soul and mind.

In the prayer service, we’ll visit Psalm 119 again. To begin the service, we’ll return to the Psalm we’re learning this month, “With All My Heart My Thanks I’ll Bring” (Red 182).

My sermon for this Lord’s Day will be from Exodus 5:22-6:9. Coming out of some of the lowest points of Israel’s troubles in Egypt, the people grew weary. They began to doubt the Word of God. They turned to Pharaoh for help. They complained to Moses. That’s where we left the people last time, in a dire situation of woe and difficulty that drove them away from the Lord. In our passage, we will look at Moses’s appeal to the Lord, and the Lord’s response. In it, we learn the importance of prayer and the necessity of waiting on God’s perfect, sovereign timing. Even more importantly, we see clearly again the great character of the LORD. It will likely take us a couple weeks to get through this passage, but its lessons are important. We learn much about the kind of God we serve and what he is doing when he saves men, something we have experienced through the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Worship Service

Call to Worship: Revelation 4:11

Hymn [Insert] Praise, My Soul, the King of Heaven

Congregational Reading: Psalm 62:1-8

Doxology: Doxology, Red 283

Hymn 266 [Red] Through Every Age, Eternal God

Hymn 315 [Red] O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing The fifth verse of this beloved hymn by Charles Wesley makes me think of the Hebrew people’s dark situation in Egypt. Wesley writes, “He speaks, and listening to His voice, new life the dead receive, the mournful, broken hearts rejoice, the humble poor believe. When the people of Israel despair, and Moses cries out his frustrations in prayer (see Exod 5!), what does our God do? He speaks. He reveals his timetable for salvation. He reiterates his promise. He shows to Moses and the people his purposes in all this: to make himself known. That is, our God wants to glorify himself. And so it is today. For hopeless sinners who have found this world and its promises empty, there is no greater word than to hear what God says in his inspired Word. When God speaks, new life comes to the dead. James 1:18, Of his own will he brought us forth by the word of truth… And when we hear his Word, the mournful, broken hearts rejoice, the humble poor believe. Unfortunately, when God spoke in Gen 6, though it was a great word, the people would not listen (cf. 6:9). May we not be so stubborn. May we hear God when he speaks, and may we rejoice and may we believe.

Prayer

Offering

Scripture Reading: Exodus 9:1-12 & John 5:19-29

Hymn 291 [Blue] Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah

Sermon: Now You Shall See, Part 1 from Exodus 5:22-6:9

Hymn 290 [Blue] Be Still, My Soul

Prayer

Benediction

We will have our Quarterly Business Meeting after the fellowship meal.