All of Christ for All of Life
Grace Alone, Faith Alone, Christ Alone

Guide for the Preparation for Worship on 5 August 2018

5 August 2018

Call to Worship: Psalm 105:1-3

Opening Hymn: 216 “Praise to the LORD, the Almighty”

Confession of Sin

Almighty and most merciful Father; We have erred and strayed from Your ways like lost sheep. We have followed too much the devices and desires of our own hearts. We have offended against Your holy laws. We have left undone those things which we ought to have done. And we have done those things which we ought not to have done; and there is no health in us. But You, O Lord, have mercy upon us, miserable offenders. Spare those, O God, who confess their faults. Restore those who are penitent; According to Your promises declared to mankind in Christ Jesus our Lord. And grant, O most merciful Father; For His sake; That we may hereby live a godly, righteous, and sober life; To the glory of Your holy name. Amen.

Assurance of Pardon: Psalm 86:12-15

Hymn of Preparation:  243 “How Firm a Foundation”

Old Covenant Reading: Psalm 51:1-19

New Covenant Reading: Romans 3:1-8

Sermon: Let God be True

Hymn of Response: Psalm 51C

Confession of Faith: Heidelberg Catechism Q/A #1

Doxology (Hymn 732)

Closing Hymn: 205 “Bread of the World in Mercy Broken”

REMINDER: The Hymns for AM Worship are from the new Trinity Psalter-Hymnal. Why not read them over and familiarize yourself with them before morning worship this Sunday?

PM Worship

OT: 2 Samuel 17:1-29

NT: Matthew 6:25-34

The Plan of God in the Plans of Men

Shorter Catechism Q/A #51

Q. 51. What is forbidden in the second commandment?
A. The second commandment forbiddeth the worshiping of God by images, or any other way not appointed in his word.

Suggested Preparations

Monday (7/30) Read and discuss Romans 3:1-8. R.C. Sproul writes:

There is no greater advantage for anyone than to be within earshot of the Word of God. I have mentioned that I was reared in a liberal church. The minister did not believe in the resurrection of Jesus. He denied the miracles of the New Testament, and his sermons exhibited that skepticism. However, part of the liturgy in that church every Sunday was the reading of the text of the Bible. Everything that went before the reading of the Bible and everything that went after it was distortion and heresy. Still, in spite of the minister – not because of him – I was sitting under the Word of God. That was the advantage to me. When I became a Christian, it was through the testimony of the Word of God. In preparation for my call to conversion, the Word of God was at work in my life.

God has chosen the foolishness of preaching as his method of saving his people, and he has invested his power in the Word. The power is not in the preacher. The power is not in the program. The power is not in the liturgy. The power is in the Word because it is attended by the Holy Spirit. The Word can cut through our minds and hardened hearts; it can pierce our souls and bring us to Christ. There is much advantage where the Word of God is preached, just as there was advantage to the Israelites in possessing the oracles of God.

Read or sing Hymn 216 “Praise to the LORD, the Almighty” Prayer: Please pray for the troubled nation of North Korea and also that world leaders would be able to find a way forward towards a peaceful, prosperous, and free future.

Tuesday (7/31) Read and discuss Romans 2:25-29. Paul is primarily addressing the Jewish Christians in Rome and he is talking about the Spirit wrought faith of their Gentile brothers and sisters in Christ. And He is saying: The very people you are looking down upon are those whom God Himself is praising. And you are praising your fellow Jews according to the flesh – who are outwardly Jewish – but who do not possess the circumcision of the heart. Even though these men and women – unless they repent – stand under the condemnation of God. Such things ought not to be. Indeed, I am calling you to repent – to turn from your condemning attitudes toward your Gentile brothers and sisters and to embrace them for what they truly are – new Creations in Jesus Christ – and joint heirs with you of the Kingdom of God. This is the goal which Paul has been driving towards. The genuine unity that believers already have in Jesus Christ is to be manifested in our deep love for one another and for a sense of wonder that God has done this astonishing work – not only for us – but for all our brothers and sisters as well. The reality of being brought into God’s family must, therefore, transcend and relativize all of our other ethnic, cultural, and socio-economic connections. Read or Sing Hymn 243 “How Firm a Foundation” Prayer: Ask the LORD to send visitors to our congregation who would be blessed by uniting with our church family and whose gifts would be used to build up the body.

Wednesday (8/1) Read and discuss Psalm 51:1-19. Allen P. Ross writes:

We, like the psalmist, can and must have complete cleansing before we can fully and freely serve God in any capacity. Our eternal destiny may not be in doubt when we sin, and neither was David’s because he appealed to that covenant relationship, but our fellowship and service will be. God will not tolerate unconfessed sin, but will discipline for it. And if we harbor unconfessed sin in our lives, we cannot teach sinners about forgiveness, we cannot praise God, we cannot come to his table, and we will not have the joy that we knew when we were walking with the LORD. We may still try to do these things without finding forgiveness, but it will be hypocrisy, and therefore not accepted or blessed by God.

Prayer: Please lift up the Session of our church as it meets this evening.

Thursday (8/2) Read and discuss Matthew 6:25-34. Grant Osborne writes:

Matthew does not intend a totally passive approach to life. It is trust in the provision of God rather than an absence of working to meet our needs. It is trust in God to guide us and provide for us, not a lazy Christianity, that is in view. The emphasis is on the anxiety that a lack of dependence on God produces. Moreover, this promise that God will give “all these things” to us is no guarantee that hard times will never befall us. Rather, it means that in the hard times God will be guiding our steps and making sure that “in all things God works for the good of those who love Him” (Romans 8:28).

When John said “Do not let your hearts be troubled” (John 14:1), he did not mean a troubled heart was a sin, for Jesus himself had a troubled heart (John 11:33); 12:27; 13:21). Rather, he meant that real trust in God will enable us to overcome such anxiety (14:2). The troubled heart will only become a sin when it is allowed to dominate our lives, so that possessions become our god and constant anxiety is the result.

Read or sing Psalm 51C Prayer: Ask the LORD to grant you a tender heart that would be quick to fully repent of sins as soon as you are convicted over them.

Friday (8/3) Read and discuss 2 Samuel 17:1-29.  Andrew Steinmann writes:

Since Ahithophel had proposed a strategy to defeat David, which Absalom had not requested, he had Hushai summoned. He asked whether Ahithophel’s scheme ought to be implemented. Husai’s reply contains masterfully worded rhetoric designed to seduce the vainglorious Absalom into rejecting Ahithophel’s advice. Hushai focused on what Absalom and Israel knew and would do. Instead of letting Ahithophel claim the victory, Absalom would be credited with the triumph because of his personal presence. Hushai used four similes compared to Ahithophel’s one. … He avoided directly criticizing Ahithophel’s untested leadership of an attack force on the battlefield, opting instead to emphasize the combat experience of David and his troops. David’s utter defeat was envisioned with catastrophic hyperbole. In short, Hushai successfully counteracted Ahithophel’s advice first by fooling Absalom with his ruse of loyalty in 16:16-19 and then by his persuasive speech as a tested veteran of combat. He appealed to his and Absalom’s shared knowledge of the enemy’s character.

Read or sing Hymn 205 “Bread of the World in Mercy Broken” Prayer: Ask that the LORD would help you to overcome those areas in your life where you find it difficult to trust Him.

Saturday (8/4) Read and discuss Romans 3:1-8. Doug Moo writes:

The Jewish tendency to think that the covenant made them secure from all threat of judgment has parallels in the Christian church. I happen to believe that the genuine Christian does have security, that is, if we have truly come to know Christ, we can be absolutely certain that we will appear before him in glory.

But belief in “eternal security,” as we sometimes call it, is open to abuse. (1) Some people may think that they are secure when they are not because they have never truly come to faith. They have “walked up the aisle,” raised their hand at an invitation, or been baptized – but they have never truly submitted to Christ as Lord. Such people are not “secure” in Christ. We need to help them understand what real conversion is and challenge each professed believer to make sure that his or her profession matches the spiritual reality. (2) But even genuine Christians can err in this matter. God’s Word does, I believe, promise that he will infallibly bring to eternal glory those who are truly his. But that Word also makes clear that our eternal glory is contingent on a life of obedience. To be sure, some theologians try to minimize or even dismiss that latter idea. But too many texts (e.g. 8:12-13) make this point quite clear. Bringing together in one neat package God’s promise to keep us secure with the need for us to be obedient in order to enjoy that promise is not easy.

Theologians have spent much time debating over just how to do it. But our point here is a relatively simple one: Believers should not so presume on their “security” that they fail to make every effort to bring their lives into obedience to Christ. It is precisely for this reason that many contemporary theologians and preachers prefer the slogan “perseverance of the saints” to “eternal security.” For the former contains the reminder that the saints need to persevere if they expect to attain glory.

Prayer: Please lift up tomorrow’s morning and evening worship services.