Sunday, November 25, 2018

Christ the King Sunday

Today is both the end and climax of the Christian year.
Today we indulge ourselves in a holy nonsense which is in fact the most beautiful truth:
we celebrate the festival of Christ the King.
He had no troops and built no palace, yet his rule is now boundless.
He had no throne and wore no crown, yet as a king he is on his own.

Organ PreludeMy Lorde of Essex, His Pavan (Barnaby)

Words of Welcome and Announcements John Strawbridge

* Choral Introit – The Lord Is In His Holy Temple (arr. Donald Moore)

The Lord is in His holy temple; let all the earth keep silence before Him. Amen.

* Call to Worship

L: This is a new day filled with fresh possibilities.
P: We gather to participate in the new things God is doing.
L: Old ways and tired routines are left behind.
P: Our God comes to us in unexpected ways and refreshes all who join the adventure.
L: Those who claim sophistication and power may miss the movement of the eternal.
P: All who give up their pretenses will find unusual opportunities.
L: Let us together explore the wonders of God.
P: Create in us clean hearts, O God, and renew our spirits. Amen!

* Opening HymnAll Hail the Power of Jesus’ Name (vs.1, 4, 5 & 6) UMH 155

1. All hail the power of Jesus’ name! Let angels prostrate fall, let angels prostrate fall; bring forth the royal diadem, and crown him, crown him, crown him, crown him, and crown him Lord of all.

4. Let every kindred, every tribe on this terrestrial ball, on this terrestrial ball, to him all majesty ascribe, and crown him, crown him, crown him, crown him, and crown him Lord of all.

5. Crown him, ye martyrs of your God, who from his altar call, who from his altar call; extol the Stem of Jesse’s Rod, and crown him, crown him, crown him, crown him, and crown him Lord of all.

6. O that with yonder sacred throng we at his feet may fall, we at this feet may fall! We’ll join the everlasting song, and crown him, crown him, crown him, crown him, and crown him Lord of all.

Prayer of Invocation (All)
Let our worship, loving God, reach up as tall as the humility of our King, and bend down as deep as his glory. Keep us hushed in a stable, grateful among sinners, overawed as our feet are washed, adoring beneath a cross, and jubilant outside a empty tomb. With his Spirit endowing us, may we serve you boldly, effectively and merrily. To the glory of your name, and the extension of his kingdom. Amen!

Sharing Joys and Concerns

Pastoral Prayer

Lord’s Prayer

Children’s Moment

AnthemPraise The Lord, O Jerusalem (Thanksgiving Anthem, J.H. Maunder)

Praise the Lord, O Jerusalem; praise thy God, O Zion, for He hath made fast the bars of thy gates and blessed thy children within thee. The Lord is gracious and full of compassion, slow to anger and of great goodness. The Lord is good to all, and His tender mercies are over all His works. All Thy works praise Thee, O Lord, and Thy saints give thanks to Thee. The valleys stand so thick with corn that they laugh & sing. Praise the Lord, O Jerusalem; praise thy God, O Zion.

A Reading from the Epistle – Revelations 1:4-8                                                           Mike Rouse, Liturgist

John to the seven churches that are in Asia:

Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth.

To him who loves us and freed us from our sins by his blood, and made us to be a kingdom, priests serving his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.

Look! He is coming with the clouds;
every eye will see him,
even those who pierced him;
and on his account all the tribes of the earth will wail.

So it is to be. Amen.

“I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.

Prayer of Confession Mike Rouse, Liturgist

L: Gracious God, as we think today about Jesus as Christ the King, we confess that we hesitate over his rule in our hearts as king because that suggests turning our understanding of power and authority upside down. We are ashamed to admit that we like a bit of prestige and it even feels good on occasion to lord it over another person. We do it in meetings, at work, in our families and even here – in church.
P: Forgive us, O God, and help us to hear anew Jesus’ words that whoever wants to be first must be last of all and servant of all.
L: We confess our failure to grasp that your reign, O God, is found whenever domination is overcome, whenever justice is experienced, and whenever people are released from prejudice and exploitation.
P: Forgive us, O God, any involvement in the pursuit of power which exploits or demeans others.
L: We confess our lack of commitment in seeking to transform systems which leave people powerless. Too often we prefer to leave the difficult tasks to others so that we can get on with our own safe agendas.
P: Forgive us, O God, when we forget that doing your will is our greatest priority.
A time of silence to reflect on these words
L: Remind us, O God, that the power of the Holy Spirit enables us to witness to the values of your kingdom in and through all we do and say and that thankfully this power far exceeds any apathy or fear on our part.
P: Renew us with your Spirit, O God, so that our lives testify to the truth of your kingdom In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.

Assurance of Forgiveness Mike Rouse, Liturgist

L: The good news is this: our sins are forgiven through “Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us and freed us from our sins … him be glory and dominion forever and ever.” Rev 1:5,6
P: Hallelujah! Amen!

* Hymn of PreparationRejoice the Lord is King UMH 715

1. Rejoice, the Lord is King! Your Lord and King adore; mortals, give thanks and sing, and triumph evermore. Lift up your heart, lift up your voice; rejoice; again I say, rejoice.

2. Jesus the Savior reigns, the God of truth and love; when he had purged our stains, he took his seat above. Lift up your heart, lift up your voice; rejoice, again I say, rejoice.

3. His kingdom cannot fail; he rules o’er earth and heaven; the keys of earth and hell are to our Jesus given. Lift up your heart, lift up your voice; rejoice, again I say, rejoice.

4. Rejoice in glorious hope! Jesus the Judge shall come, and take his servants up to their eternal home. We soon shall hear th’archangel’s voice; the trump of God shall sound, rejoice!

A Reading from the Gospel – John 18:33-37
Then Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” Jesus answered, “Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?” Pilate replied, “I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?” Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.” Pilate asked him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”

Sermon – “Jesus as Royalty”                                                                                                     Rev. Debbie Scott

The Offering of Gifts & Tithes

Offertory – Gracious Lord, Hear Our Plea (Balakirev)

Gracious Lord, hear our plea;
O make us ever more like Thee.
As Thou has lived, so may we live
In love and meek humility.,
That living, we may follow Thee
And dying we may dwell with Thee.
Thy love is great, Thy mercy true;
Thy Word is life, Thy pardon sure.
Gracious Lord, hear our plea;
O make us ever more like Thee.

* Presentation of OfferingPraise God, from Whom All Blessings Flow UMH 95

Praise God, from whom all blessings flow; praise him, all creatures here below;
praise him above, yet heavenly host; praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Amen.

Offering Prayer (All)

Eternal God, with cheerful voices and thankful hearts, we offer to you these gifts and our lives. May Christ the King rule in our hearts so that we are powerful witnesses to the truth of your kingdom of love, justice and peace. This we pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.

* Closing HymnCrown Him with Many Crowns UMH 327

1. Crown him with many crowns, the Lamb upon his throne. Hark! how the heavenly anthem drowns all music but its own. Awake, my soul, and sing of him who died for thee, and hail him as thy matchless King through all eternity.

2. Crown him the Lord of life, who triumphed o’er the grave, and rose victorious in the strife for those he came to save. His glories now we sing, who died, and rose on high, who died, eternal life to bring, and lives that death may die.

3. Crown him the Lord of peace, whose power a scepter sways from pole to pole, that wars may cease, and all be prayer and praise. His reign shall know no end, and round his pierced feet fair flowers of paradise extend their fragrance ever sweet.

4. Crown him the Lord of love; behold his hands and side, those wounds, yet visible above, in beauty glorified. All hail, Redeemer, hail! For thou hast died for me; thy praise and glory shall not fail throughout eternity.

* Benediction

Let us go forth to serve God’s children in weakness,
so others might find the strength to live.
Let us go forth as powerless as Jesus,
to empower others with hope.
Let us go forth with our arms full of the Spirit’s peace,
so the world might be healed of all its brokenness.

* Choral ResponseShalom Chaverim (trad. Jewish)

Farewell, my friends. May peace be with you.

* Ringing of the Bicentennial Bell

* Organ PostludeFinale in C (Moore)

Categories Uncategorized | Tags: | Posted on November 21, 2018

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