Liturgical Guide for Sunday, December 13th @ HCBCDS

Logo-FinalWorship is the lifeblood of the church. It’s the very reason for our existence, to glorify God the Father in the Son through the power of the Holy Spirit. Singing on Sunday mornings in a worship gathering is just one small part of that, but it’s an important and vital part. We are commanded to sing together, and this weekly post is designed to help you prepare to do that.

The apostle Paul instructed the Ephesian church to not be like the pagans in their misguided worship but to “be filled with the Spirit.” How do we do that? He tells us that as well.

“Be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Ephesians 5:18-20 (NIV)

When we gather for corporate worship we are to encourage one another by singing. Singing together, according to Paul is the means by which we are filled with the Spirit of God. The following is a brief summary of how we do that each week. 

CALL TO WORSHIP (Revelation)

Christian worship is the rhythm of revelation and response. God reveals himself to us and we respond in worship. The revelation of God in the Scriptures is what fuels and informs our worship. So, we begin our services with liturgical elements (i.e. Scripture readings, songs, responsive readings, etc.) that reveal something about the character of God and who he is for us in Christ Jesus.

This week, since the Christmas season is fully upon us we begin with a song that tells the story of God’s declaration of love for his people, namely the birth of Jesus the Messiah.

This is a new version of the classic hymn written by Chris Tomlin which adds a chorus that answers the question of, “What are the angels singing that we are supposed to hear.”

Song: Midnight Clear (Love Song) by Chris Tomlin

Lyrics:

It came upon the midnight clear
That glorious song of old
From angels bending near the earth
To touch their harps of gold
Peace on the earth, goodwill to men
From heaven’s all gracious King
The world in solemn stillness lay
To hear the angels sing

Still through the cloven skies they come
With peaceful wings unfurled
And still their heavenly music floats
Through all the weary world
And man at war with man hears not
The love song which they bring
O hush the noise and cease the strife
And hear the angels sing

Glory to God in the highest
Glory to God evermore
Good news, great joy for all
Melody breaks through the silence
Christ, the Savior is born!
Jesus, the love song of God!

And this next song seems a perfect follow up to the last, as a bold declaration of who Jesus is in truth and power.

Song: Glory In The Highest by Chris Tomlin

Lyrics: 

You are the first, You go before
You are the last, Lord, You’re the encore
Your name’s in lights for all to see
The starry host declare Your glory

Glory in the highest
Glory in the highest
Glory in the highest

Apart from You there is no god
Light of the world, The Bright and Morning Star
Your name will shine for all to see
You are the one, You are my glory

And no one else could ever compare, To You, Lord
All the earth together declares …
Glory in the highest … to You, Lord

All the earth will sing Your praise
The moon and stars, the sun and rain
Every nation will proclaim
That You are God and You will reign

Glory, glory hallelujah
Glory, glory to You, Lord
Glory, glory hallelujah, Hallelujah

CORPORATE PRAYER Confession of Sins

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9 (ESV)

Confession of sins and assurance of our pardon in Christ through the gospel are essential to Christian worship. On the one hand, if we revel in the glories of the good news that God is for us in the death of his Son without acknowledgment of sin our gospel is weak, nothing more than moral-therapeutic deism. On the other hand, if we know the holiness of God and if our hearts droop under the weight of our own sinfulness without knowing the free grace of God that brings salvation to sinners we miss the point of the cross altogether. It is because we are sinners that Christ came to redeem, and it is because we acknowledge our guilt in repentance that we by faith obtain the promise of forgiveness in Christ. Without both confession of sin and rejoicing in assurance of pardon our worship of God is incomplete.

Assurance of Pardon

Sometimes the hardest thing for us to believe is that if we are in Christ then God no longer punishes or demands payment for our sins. The reality is, however that when God the Father looks at one of his broken, sinful and often rebellious children he sees them, not in wrath and anger but in mercy and grace; God sees us as he sees his perfect Son, who died, was buried, and raised the third day for our redemption.

If our faith and hope is in Christ alone then our sins are forgiven and we are free from sin and all its penalties. Let us always hope in the mercy of God that is for us through the death and resurrection of our Savior King, Jesus, by whom we who were once his enemies have been made friends.

Song: O Come, O Come Emmanuel by Matt Maher

Lyrics:

O come, O come, Emmanuel
And ransom captive Israel
That mourns in lonely exile here
Until the Son of God appear

Rejoice, rejoice
Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel

O come, Thou wisdom from on high
Who orderest all things mightily
To us the path of knowledge show
And teach us in her ways to go

Rejoice, rejoice
Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel
Shall come to thee, O Israel

Rejoice, again, I say, rejoice
For unto us is born the Savior of the world
Take heart, oh weary soul, take heart
For help is on its way
And Holy is His name

Rejoice, rejoice
Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel

Holy is His name
Holy is His name

GOSPEL INSTRUCTION (Proclamation)

Message: Jason McNutt (Exodus)

Pastoral Prayer & Communion Instruction

“On the night he was betrayed Jesus took bread, and broke it, and said, “This is my body which is broken for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way also he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, in remembrance of me.”

1 Corinthians 11:23-26 (ESV)

As Jesus instructed we observe the ordinance of communion every time we gather. There is not a clearer picture of the gospel than the bread and wine of the Lord’s supper. We believe that this communion is not only a mere memorial, a remembrance of what Jesus did for us at the cross, but that, in the context of the gathering of the saints communion is a type of spiritual nourishment whereby we feast upon the goodness and mercy of our Lord in the Spirit, as we remember that he died on our behalf.

Communion Song: Death Has Lost Its Sting by Sojourn Community Church

Lyrics:

My God, how many are my fears
How fast my foes increase
Conspiring my eternal death
They break my fleeting peace

The lying tempter would persuade
My heart to doubt Your aid
And all my swelling sins appear
Much greater than Your grace

Arise, Oh Lord, fulfill your grace
While I Your glory sing;
My God has broke the serpentʼs teeth
And death has lost his sting

But You – my Glory and my Strength –
Will on my tempter tread
Will silence all my threatening guilt
And raise my drooping head.

And though the hosts of death and hell
All armed against me stand
No more will terrors shake my soul;
Secure within Your hand.

ADORATION, PRAISE, THANKSGIVING (Response)

Offering (Worship Through Generosity)

“Do not be arrogant or put your hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but put your hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. Do good, be rich in good deeds, and be generous and willing to share. In this way you will lay up treasure for yourselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that you may take hold of the life that is truly life.”

1 Timothy 6:17-19 (NIV-paraphrased)

Jesus said, “Where your treasure is there your heart will be also” (Matt. 6:21). Taking Jesus at his word and knowing that God desires our hearts above all else we give. We practice generosity in every area of our lives (including our finances), not because we are working to earn favor with God, but because Jesus has earned God’s favor for us by freely giving his life for ours. So, we seek to worship God with our time, our talents, and our money.

Tithes & offerings can also be given through our online community called The City.

Song of Response: Victory by Hillsong Worship

Lyrics:

Born into the hands of sin
Crippled by the shame within
Broken heart and restless soul
Lost out on the open road

Beaten on that bloody day
On His back a world of pain
Clinging to that cursed tree
Jesus bled and died for me

Victory Victory
Conquered death, Set me free
Victory Victory, Jesus alive in me

Three days on the stone gives way
Ain’t nothing but an empty grave
Gather all the sinners ’round
Tell them what great love we’ve found

Lead me to the water deep
In the gracious current I’ll sink
I will rise dead to my sin
Christ in me and I in him

CLOSING (Challenge and Commission)

Gospel Charge: Go live “Life Between Sundays”

Our vision is that every man, woman and child in Dripping Springs has the chance to experience the life-transforming power of Jesus. 

We believe this can be accomplished as we build a community of people that are integrating the life transforming power of Jesus into everyday life. We call this Life Between Sundays. We fulfill this purpose by intentional living and taking the gospel with us everywhere we go. Faith is not an event or duty we fulfill on Sunday mornings but the character and lifestyle we exhibit everyday in all circumstances. Monday is just as important as Sunday.

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