Click the links in each description to find the song list and links to videos of that Sunday’s songs. Each heading will take you to that date’s sermon.
This Sunday we exalt the wisdom, power, and authority of Jesus Christ as we read of his testing in the temple. The Jewish scribes and chief priests had sent out spies to trap Jesus with deceitful questions, and then to deliver him up to the Roman government. Yet in his divine wisdom Jesus silenced those who sought to condemn him, and the questioners themselves received the greater condemnation as Jesus publicly warned his disciples of the scribes’ malicious and deceptive nature. By contrast, we glorify the firm and true foundation of Christ our life and resurrection. Although we “render unto Caesar” that which bears the image of Caesar, Christ calls us to give to God our whole selves which bear his divine image.
As we gather this week, we follow the narrative of Luke as Jesus enters Jerusalem. Although the temple was intended to be a house of prayer for all nations, it had been overtaken by merchants. Jesus drove out the sellers, and began to teach daily in the temple. Upon having his authority questioned by the Jewish leaders, Jesus wisely discerned their intentions and caught them in their own question. In reflecting upon Jesus’ authority in his cleansing of the temple, we consider how this narrative applies to the Church and by grace seek Christ’s cleansing in the temple of our bodies.
In this Sunday’s service, we reflect on Jesus‘ entrance into Jerusalem. As he drew near, he sent his disciples ahead to bring him an untrained colt, which he would ride into the city. Jesus’ lordship was proclaimed when the colt was untied, and his authority validated when he rode upon this untamed animal. In triumphal procession, Jesus’ disciples praised God as he rode toward the city. Appalled, the Pharisees told Jesus to rebuke his disciples; yet he answered that even the stones would cry out if his disciples were silent.
Jesus’ face was set to enter Jerusalem even though he knew he would be rejected and crucified there -yet he wept not over himself, but over Jerusalem, for the destruction they would face because of their rejection.
This week we’ll focus on an event that energized the Apostles and the early church: The Unveiling of Christ. We’ll see its emphasis, and then how it prepares us to endure suffering and hard trials. We’ll see how the quest for comfort gets in the way of what God has for us to focus on, to be inspired by, to overcome trials with, to prepare us for glory that will result in a deep overflowing joy.
This Sunday we are challenged by the parable of the ten minas. As he was approaching Jerusalem, Jesus told a parable to his disciples about a nobleman who went to a far country to receive a kingdom. Upon leaving, the nobleman divided up ten minas among his servants to invest until his promised return. Many citizens rejected the nobleman as king, yet he received his kingdom and returned to see how his servants had invested what he had given them. Those who had invested and received a return were granted even more, yet the ones who had failed to invest their master’s wealth had it taken away from them. Further, those who rejected the authority of the king were gathered up and destroyed.
All of our gifts and wealth -both spiritual and physical- have been granted to us by Jesus our Lord and king. We are to faithfully invest Jesus’ wealth in anticipation of his glorious return, despite those who reject his authority and kingship.
In this week’s service, we delight in the power and saving love of our Lord. Jesus passed through Jericho after his encounter with the blind beggar and sought out a chief tax collector named Zacchaeus, who had climbed into a tree in order to catch sight of Jesus. Calling him by name, Jesus invited himself to be a guest at Zacchaeus’ house that day. The crowd grumbled over the infamous reputation of the man Jesus had sought out -yet even as they grumbled, Zacchaeus gave up his wealth and received salvation from the one who came to seek and save the lost.
As we sing this Sunday, we reflect on the glory of God in the cross of Christ. Jesus demonstrated his full knowledge of God’s gracious plan by predicting his death. He proves God’s love for us by his complete willingness to face torment and crucifixion, with a full knowledge of what was to come. Despite all Jesus’ predictions, his disciples were blinded to what was to come. Yet soon after, a blind beggar had faith in Jesus as the Son of David, the Messiah who would fulfill God’s promises and bring redemption to humanity. As the blind man’s faith in Jesus gave him sight, he glorified God and led others to praise God as well.
Jesus’ difficult teaching in this passage brings us to face the completeness of God’s claim on our lives. While the context of Jesus’ other teaching clearly indicates he is not instructing hateful action, the comparative priority of our love for him vs our other relationships, responsibilities, and resources could be perceived as hatred. A great beauty of God’s total claim, however, is that as we surrender totally to him we love those around us most completely.
Christ demonstrates, and calls us to, humility and mercy. May we respond to him knowing that He is the source of these traits, and the loving, redeeming creator to whom we owe all.
As we dedicate children this week we remember that we are God’s children, born of the spirit through faith in Christ – He who paid for us with his death on the cross, rose to life and calls us to him for eternity.
We celebrate Jesus’ love for us as we see him resolutely heading toward Jerusalem, his death, and through it his resurrection and conquering of death. He is our great hope, the Great King and all will bow to him when he comes to rule.
Experiencing the Grace of God; Jesus Came to Save Sinners; The Gospel Transforms Lives; We should thank Jesus that he saves sinners like us. We’ll be tracking these main ideas from 1 Timothy 1:12-17 in our singing this Sunday. Click the links to find the sermon notes, song videos, and song list.
As Jesus teaches us to avoid hypocrisy (all will come to light), to fear the God who loves us, and faithfully hold Him up before others, we turn our singing toward the power of Christ that will lead us in obedience to His teaching. We pray that His will be done in us and on earth. We honor him as King and Creator, having all authority in our lives, and we claim Him as our God in whom we will trust, who alone is able to keep us in the palm of His hand.
Set list is here. Check out the songs linked above.
1 Peter 3:1-7 begins both sections, to wives and husbands, with the word, “Likewise.” Like what? Chapter 2 reveals…be subject to authority, live free – but as servants, honor everyone, fear God, love others, endure suffering to which you are called. Then we see the parallel teaching to husbands and wives that they are to follow with one another. Our songs will track 3 complimentary ideas:
1. Our model for this relationship, how Christ has loved us.
2. In fearing God, we can endure in suffering and “fear nothing frightening” (vs 6). In this portion we will introduce a new song, He Will Hold Me Fast.
3. We are “fellow heirs of the grace of life” (vs 7).
This week we return to the greatness of God as we see Jesus’ calling the focus of worship to himself, “Blessed rather are those who hear [my words] and obey. …Someone greater than Solomon, …greater than Jonah is here.”
See the set or check out the song, Our God.
Our song list this week reflects the coming of Christ’s kingdom in power, overthrowing the kingdom of Satan. Jesus is stronger than Satan, and when His spirit dwells in us we have the Great King as our protector.