January 15, 2017
This is a weekly blog post with one purpose: to help those coming to Park’s Sunday gathering engage with the teaching and liturgy in a more meaningful way. We use this space to share in advance our Sunday’s liturgy: the scripture we’ll be studying, the songs we’ll be singing, and the prayers we’ll be praying together. We also share a handful of thoughts each week to help you use these things to prepare for the service.
This Sunday at Park, we’re in week 17 of The Book of Acts: You Will Be My Witnesses. Here are a couple things you can do to prepare for this week’s service:
1. Read through our text, Acts 8:26–40.
An angel of the Lord instructs Philip to head south from Jerusalem on the road to Gaza. He does as told and meets an Ethiopian eunuch, sitting in his chariot on the way to Jerusalem, reading Isaiah and struggling to understand who this Suffering Servant must be. Philip tells him about Jesus, and the man immediately believes and desires to be baptized, so it happens. As they come up from the water, Philip is carried away by the Spirit and the Eunuch goes “on his way rejoicing.”
This passage teaches us that the Holy Spirit empowers us to share good news that brings great joy to people—people who need it. As you prepare this week, consider who the people are in your life that need to hear good news and receive joy. Look back through the text; how does the Holy Spirit empower you to do this work?
When Philip meets the eunuch, he’s reading from Isaiah 53. In your preparation this week, consider making use of these Isaiah 53 entries by The Verses Project. Simply put, The Verses Project provides musical and visual art to help people memorize and meditate on scripture. We think this is a great resource for personal and corporate devotion!
2. Read, pray and sing through the service.
CALL TO WORSHIP: Psalm 98:1–3
Before The Throne of God (Charitie Lees Bancroft, arr. Modern Post)
Be Thou My Vision (Author Unkown, arr. Ascend The Hill)
CONFESSION OF SIN: From The Worship Sourcebook
God of grace,
you have given us Jesus,
the light of the world,
but we choose darkness
and cling to things that hide the brightness of your love.
Immersed in ourselves, we have not risen to new life.
Baptize us with your Spirit,
that, forgiven and renewed,
we may preach your Word to the nations
and tell of your glory shining in the face of Jesus Christ,
our Lord and our light forever.
Christ Or Else I Die (William Hammond, arr. Red Mountain Church)
Jesus Paid It All (Elvina Hall, Kristian Stanfill)
ASSURANCE OF PARDON: 1 John 1:5–7
SERMON & COMMUNION
How Marvelous (I Stand Amazed) (Charles H. Gabriel)
All I Have Is Christ (Jordan Kauflin)
BENEDICTION & SENDING