We claim to worship the true God. As striking as this claim is in a post-Christian pseudo-tolerant world, it is well founded. After all, the Lord Jesus Christ, in whose name we gather for worship, is risen from the dead, living at his Father’s right hand in heaven, interceding for us. So on that point the claim to worship the true God is warranted. But to claim to worship God is not without world-changing significance. To make the claim to worship the true God is to make the claim that God is God, that he is above all, that his word is better than our ideas, and that he is to obeyed. This obedience is put to the test in this age of idolatry, sin, and rebellion. Our call to worship this Sunday, Hab 2:20, teaches us that as worshippers of the living God, we must submit to the living God, even when that is difficult: But the Lord is in his holy temple; let all the earth keep silence before him. Too many people want to come to God with their mouths open, speaking. They want to speak to God and bring him into submission to them. To worship the true and living Yahweh, and to come into his presence, demands of us that we close our lips in humble submission and reverence before him. This Sunday, as we worship, we will definitely open our mouths and break the silence. But even as we do so, our demeanor in worship should be marked by quiet submission to him and his will. This spirit of silence will characterize us by God’s grace, and, indeed, we will see it when the Word is opened and we hear from our God.
In the prayer service, we will look one final time at the prayers of Jesus in the Gospel of Luke. Fittingly, we will look at Luke’s account of the resurrected Christ praying from Luke 24.
The message this Sunday will look at 1 Corinthians 14:33b-35 and Paul’s instructions for women in the church. This is a highly controversial passage, but I hope to preach it plainly, clearly, and convincingly. Despite the interpretative debates over this passage, it still bears much wealth and profit for us in faithful Christian practice. Above all, we must be ready to spirit of submission to Christ’s commands. This is the service order for Sunday, January 17, 2016:
Call to Worship: Habakkuk 2:20
Hymn 327 [Red] The Church’s One Foundation Even Baptists believe in a holy, catholic church. The word “catholic,” of course, means “universal. The belief in the universal church is not universal among Baptists (no pun intended), but the great majority of Baptists have confessed it. In the passage this morning, Paul opens the paragraph in v. 33a, “As in all the churches of the saints.” This is one of the reasons Paul gives for women to be silent in the church. In other words, as we saw in 1 Cor 11:16, Paul argues that if they are the only confessing Christians to practice something, there is ground for concern. Churches are not islands. We have a mutual accountability and fellowship with other believers, and we ought to honor that, not simply in word, but in deed as well. This hymn touches on that the reality of our catholic faith in the second verse: “Elect from every nation, but one over all the earth; her charter of salvation, one Lord, one faith, one birth; one holy Name she blesses, partakes one holy food, and to one hope she presses, with every grace endued.” The church is bigger than us and Jesus. It includes all true believers over the whole earth.
Congregational Reading: Psalm 6:1-10
Doxology: Doxology, Red 437
Hymn 358 [Red] Jesus, Lover of My Soul
Hymn 54 [Blue] For the Beauty of the Earth
Scripture Reading: Job 13 & Mark 1:21-45
Hymn 268 [Blue] How Firm a Foundation
Sermon: Catholic Silence from 1 Corinthians 14:33b-35
Hymn 342 [Red] Be Thou My Vision
After the fellowship meal, we will have our Annual Business Meeting.