We are those who rejoice in the Lord our Savior, and tomorrow it our delightful duty to lift our voices together in praise to our God in the name of our Lord Jesus. Though we be sinners, we are freely invited and called to worship our God because he is a God who forgives, and he has forgiven even our sins so that we can enter the holiest with our sacrifices of praise. It is this forgiveness that we will joyfully consider in both the sermon and the Lord’s Table.
In the prayer service, we will consider one final time Luke’s setting of the Lord’s Prayer, this time with the petition, “And lead us not into temptation.” We will also use our prayer service tomorrow to begin learning our new hymn for August, “Let Christian Faith and Hope Dispel,” the Scottish Psalter’s paraphrase of Romans 8:31-39. This hymn is found on page 360 in the Red hymnal.
For the Worship service the sermon considers the forgiveness offered by love from 1 Cor 13:5. The service centers on that message and our Communion in that forgiveness that we observe in the Lord’s Table. Here is the service order:
- Call to Worship: Psalm 136:1
- Hymn 296 [Red] Behold the Glories of the Lamb
- Congregational Reading: Psalm 86:1-7
- Doxology: Diademata, Red 293
- Scripture Reading: 1 Samuel 23:15-29 & 1 John 4:13-21
- Hymn 315 [Red] O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing
- Sermon: Unresentful Love from 1 Corinthians 13:5
- Hymn 265 [Red] Stricken, Smitten, and Afflicted
- The Lord’s Table
- Hymn 261 [Red] Let Thy Blood in Mercy Poured “Let Thy Blood in Mercy Poured” is a Greek hymn translated by John Brownlie. The tune is an old German tune (to which the sublime hymn “Jesus Lives and So Shall I” is also set). I chose this hymn because it speaks of Christ’s love, forgiveness, and even alludes the elements of the Table. For the latter, the hymn opens, “Let thy blood in mercy poured, Let Thy gracious body broken, Be to me, O gracious Lord, Of Thy boundless love the token.” As to the former–the forgiving of love of God–the last verse says, “Wilt Thou own the gift I bring? All my penitence I give Thee; Thou art my exalted King, Of Thy matchless love forgive me.” This is a powerful expression of God’s free forgiveness to us. We have nothing to offer God for forgiveness. There is no merit we bring to the table to secure eternal redemption. All we do is confess our sin and in repentance turn to him. When we do this, we see him who is “our exalted King” forgiving us out of “matchless love.” In order to find merit, we declare our absolute absence of merit and desperate need of grace. The grace and merit is all found in Christ. Praise be to God for the free gospel of our salvation.
In Sunday School, I will be teaching on Siloquy 2 by Elihu in chapters 32-37 of Job.