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Christians, of all people, ought to care about the truth. In fact, truth is necessary for worship. This is what Jesus said in John 4:24: God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth. These important words of Christ to the woman at the well help us understand why we are so concerned, as we gather as a church each week, that all our worship conform to the Word of God. Our worship, if anything, must be true. We should not only be committed to the truth, but we should love the truth. It is upon hearing and believing the truth of God in the gospel of Jesus Christ that we were saved. The world is filled with many lies; as we gather together this Lord’s Day, our church will be a place for truth, as we magnify the God of Truth, the Son who is the Truth, and the Spirit of Truth.
In the prayer service, I will select for the lesson another passage from the beautiful 119th Psalm. We’ll begin the service by singing again the hymn we’re learning this month, “Thou Hidden Source of Calm Repose” (Red 376).
The sermon this Sunday is the ninth on the Ten Commandments. So we will consider these well-known words: You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. The sermon is headed where you are probably expecting it to. As I hinted above, the 9th commandment is very concerned about truth. And yet there is more here, as the Law itself makes clear. So as you prepare to come and hear God’s Truth about the 9th Commandment this Lord’s Day, I recommend that you consider, not only our own catechism on the 9th commandment, but the explanation defined by the Orthodox Catechism (a Baptist catechism from the 17th century based on the famous Heidelberg Catechism):
What does the ninth commandment require?
That I bear no false witness against any man, neither falsify any man’s words, nor backbit, nor reproach any man, nor condemn any rashly or unheard. I must avoid and shun with all carefulness all kinds of lies and deceits, as the proper works of the Devil, or I will stir up against me the most grievous wrath of God. In judgments and other affairs, I must follow the truth, and freely and constantly profess the matter as it indeed is, as well as defend and increase, as much as in me lies, the good name and estimation of others.
As the ninth commandment has much to do with protecting the truth, the hymns and congregational reading of this Sunday’s worship will much rejoice in the truth found in Jesus Christ.
Call to Worship: John 4:23-24
Hymn 273 [Gray] Credo
Congregational Reading: Psalm 43
Doxology: Doxology, Red 437
Hymn 286 [Red] And Can it Be that I Should Gain?
Hymn 139 [Red] All People That on Earth Do Dwell
Scripture Reading: Exodus 39:22-43 & Revelation 10
Hymn 287 [Gray] Jesus, Thou Joy of Loving Hearts This is a very old hymn, originally penned in Latin by Bernard of Clairvaux in the 12th century. It is a hymn most suitable for Communion, but it works this Sunday as well. The words of the second verse kept returning to me as I began preparing this week’s service last week: Thy truth unchanged hath ever stood; Thou savest those that on Thee call; to them that seek Thee Thou art good, to them that find Thee, all in all. Once again, it is that beautifully stated sentiment that ought to make us people who both love and speak the truth, and it alone.
Sermon: Sins against the Truth from Exodus 20:16
Hymn 240 [Gray] O Word of God Incarnate
In Sunday School, I will being our new series on Spiritual Growth. I will begin with a discussion of the gospel and salvation, the necessary prerequisite to bona-fide spiritual growth.