July 5, 2020
It’s Christ in the Psalms week four. We’ll be in Psalm 104. In this ongoing series, we’ve gone psalm-by-psalm through about ten psalms per year, dating back to Psalm 1 eight years ago.
Our artwork for Psalm 104 is black and white photography by John Forney. See the piece and read about the art and artist here. To learn more about the weekly Christ in the Psalms artwork pieces and see them all (they go back as far as Psalm 41!), click here.
Here’s how you can prepare for this Sunday, July 5.
1. Read our text, Psalm 104.
Bless the Lord, O my soul! O Lord my God, you are very great! You are clothed with splendor and majesty, covering Yourself with light as with a garment, stretching out the heavens like a tent. He lays the beams of His chambers on the waters; He makes the clouds His chariot; He rides on the wings of the wind; He makes His messengers winds, His ministers a flaming fire. He set the earth on its foundations, so that it should never be moved. You covered it with the deep as with a garment; the waters stood above the mountains. At your rebuke they fled; at the sound of Your thunder they took to flight. The mountains rose, the valleys sank down to the place that You appointed for them. You set a boundary that they may not pass, so that they might not again cover the earth. You make springs gush forth in the valleys; they flow between the hills; they give drink to every beast of the field; the wild donkeys quench their thirst. Beside them the birds of the heavens dwell; they sing among the branches. From Your lofty abode You water the mountains; the earth is satisfied with the fruit of Your work. You cause the grass to grow for the livestock and plants for man to cultivate, that he may bring forth food from the earth and wine to gladden the heart of man, oil to make his face shine and bread to strengthen man’s heart. The trees of the Lord are watered abundantly, the cedars of Lebanon that He planted. In them the birds build their nests; the stork has her home in the fir trees. The high mountains are for the wild goats; the rocks are a refuge for the rock badgers. He made the moon to mark the seasons; the sun knows its time for setting. You make darkness, and it is night, when all the beasts of the forest creep about. The young lions roar for their prey, seeking their food from God. When the sun rises, they steal away and lie down in their dens. Man goes out to his work and to his labor until the evening. O Lord, how manifold are Your works! In wisdom have You made them all; the earth is full of Your creatures. Here is the sea, great and wide, which teems with creatures innumerable, living things both small and great. There go the ships, and Leviathan, which You formed to play in it. These all look to You, to give them their food in due season. When Yu give it to them, they gather it up; when You open your hand, they are filled with good things. When you hide Your face, they are dismayed; when You take away their breath, they die and return to their dust. When You send forth Your Spirit, they are created, and You renew the face of the ground. May the glory of the Lord endure forever; may the Lord rejoice in His works, who looks on the earth and it trembles, who touches the mountains and they smoke! I will sing to the Lord as long as I live; I will sing praise to my God while I have being. May my meditation be pleasing to Him, for I rejoice in the Lord. Let sinners be consumed from the earth, and let the wicked be no more! Bless the Lord, O my soul! Praise the Lord!
2. Read, pray, and sing through the service:
Don’t use Spotify? Click the song title below to see song on YouTube.
CALL TO WORSHIP: Psalm 104:31–34:
May the glory of the Lord endure forever; may the Lord rejoice in His works, who looks on the earth and it trembles, who touches the mountains and they smoke! I will sing to the Lord as long as I live; I will sing praise to my God while I have being. May my meditation be pleasing to Him, for I rejoice in the Lord.
Praise To The Lord (Joyful, Joyful) (Bryn Haworth, Joachim Neander, Catherine Winkworth arr. Shane & Shane)
CONFESSION OF SIN: by Joe Seremane:
You asked for my hands, that You might use them for Your purpose. I gave them for a moment then withdrew them, for the work was hard. You asked for my mouth to speak out against injustice. I gave You a whisper that I might not be accused. You asked for my eyes to see the pain of poverty. I closed them, for I did not want to see. You asked for my life, that You might work through me. I gave a small part, that I might not get too involved. Lord, forgive my calculated efforts to serve You— only when it is convenient for me to do so, only in those places where it is safe to do so, and only with those who make it easy to do so. Father, forgive me, renew me, send me out as a usable instrument, that I might take seriously the meaning of Your cross. Amen.
ASSURANCE OF PARDON: Zephaniah 3:17
The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness; He will quiet you by His love; He will exult over you with loud singing.
PASSING THE PEACE
(Click to Read)
When we’ve met as a large group on Sundays, we’ve always had a time of greeting one another after singing. Many churches call this time “passing the peace.” In some church traditions, one person will say to another, “The peace of Christ be with you” to which the other person responds, “And also with you.”
While potentially unfamiliar for some, we felt that “passing the peace” during greeting times at home could be a powerful act in this age marked by very little external peace. In Isaiah 9, Jesus is described as the Prince of Peace. He wants His kingdom to be marked by this very peace! We want to “pass” to one another this peace that only Jesus can give, especially at a time like this.
It might feel a bit cheesy, but we encourage you to actually pray the peace of God over each other during our times. We encourage you to look into each other’s eyes as you say, “The peace of Christ be with you!” and have others respond with, “And also with you.” Be open-hearted to Jesus, asking Him to fill you with His peace.