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The world is today as superstitious and idolatrous ever. The world is filled with naturalistic “spiritual” people who are content to make up their religion according to their own fluctuating fancy. But we have received a revealed religion. As we gather for worship this Lord’s Day, Paul’s confession in 1 Cor 8:6 will be the text that calls us to forsake all idols and worship the true and living God in truth: yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist. Paul’s confession is a reworking of Deut 6:4, Hear, O Israel, the LORD our God, the LORD is one. In using this foundational Biblical text to declare the believers’ adherence to the Father and the Son, Paul brings the Father and the Son together into a deep, intimate relationship. He speaks of the Father, who is God, just as the Son is God. Of course, the Father is Lord also, just as the Son is both Lord and God. As we study the revelation of the Lord Yahweh at the burning bush on Mount Horeb to Moses, what is important for us in 1 Cor 8:6 is that Paul clearly identifies Jesus Christ as Yahweh himself. As Ciampa and Rosner observe, “Paul thus simultaneously reaffirms strict Jewish monotheism and the highest possible Christology imaginable.” [The First Letter to the Corinthians, PNTC (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2010), 383.] As we will see this morning, when we confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father, we are saying that Jesus of Nazareth is none other than Yahweh Incarnate.
In the prayer service, we’ll look at another verse from Psalm 119. We’ll begin the service reviewing a hymn we learned a few months ago, “How Sad Our State.”
The sermon this Sunday will draw several lessons from the name Yahweh for our understanding and growth in the knowledge of God. This sacred name is more than a simple label; we see a window into who God is and how we should respond to him in faith. God comes to Moses and calls himself the I AM WHO I AM, and by this he reveals much more than a mere name, but a whole theology of who he is. We will be giving ourselves to both comprehend and respond rightly to the self-revelation to Moses.
Call to Worship: 1 Corinthians 8:6
Hymn 328 [Red] The God of Abraham Praise This is one of the great hymns. It was originally written as a Jewish hymn in the 14th century by Daniel ben Judah. Thomas Olivers (1725-1799) (who also composed the hymn tune HELMSEY to which we sing, “Lo! He Comes with Clouds Descending”), after hearing the hymn at a London Synagogue, took ben Judah’s words and transformed them into a distinctively Christian hymn. Because Olivers was a colleague of the Wesleys, the hymn became widely known through the Methodists. Each stanza is filled with rhobust, stout doctrines of the Triune God, all poetically fit together and articulate the truth that the God of the Old Testament is worshipped through Jesus Christ. Since we are looking at Exod 3:14-15 this Sunday, the numerous references to YHWH in the hymn makes it especially fitting. In verse 1, we sing of “Jehovah, Great I am” and the “sacred Name, forever blessed.” Verse 7 refers to the “LORD [Yahweh] our Righteousness.” The 9th verse speaks of God’s people who praise God, “and sing, in songs which never end, the wondrous Name.” Verse 10’s last two lines also refer to the Tetragrammaton: “Who was, and is, the same, and evermore shall be, Jehovah—Father—Great I Am! We worship Thee!”
Congregational Reading: Psalm 55:1-3, 16-17, 22
Doxology: Gloria Patri, Red 436
Hymn [Insert] Glory Be to God the Father
Hymn 121 [Red] It’s Good to Thank the Lord
Scripture Reading: Exodus 4:18-31 & John 1:43-2:12
Hymn 124 [Red] God of Vengeance, O Jehovah
Sermon: Biblical Lessons from the Sacred Name from Exodus 3:10-15
Hymn 4 [Blue] Praise Ye the Triune God!
In Sunday School, I will teach again on the Conservative Christian Declaration. This time we look at articles 9 & 13.