Each week, we aim to prepare our hearts before the Lord in anticipation of our worship gathering. Therefore, we'll post the Scriptures, Big Idea, Songs, and other reflections that will help us enter into worship together - with one heart, one voice, and one mind - in full accord (Philippians 2:2). Here are some simple ways to prepare your heart...
- READ through the text that will be preached on Sunday. Take a few moments or more to familiarize yourself with it, study, or meditate on it.
- SING, LISTEN, OR READ through the songs that we'll be singing together. Meditate on the truth and substance they instill. Consider the ways of your own heart as you do. This is also a good opportunity to become familiar with new songs in advance of our time together.
- PRAY and ask the Lord to open your heart to Him and to draw you into thoughtful worship as you reflect on who He is, what He's done for us in Jesus, who we are, and what He's called us to do.
Romans 8:18-25; 1 Peter 1:1-25
Sunday, Nov. 22: We will be saved from the Presence of Sin (Future tense).
Background: We have been saved from the PENALTY of sin because of Jesus’ life and death (past tense), we are being saved from the POWER of sin because of Jesus’ resurrection and ascension. (present tense), and we will be saved from the PRESENCE of sin because of Jesus’ return. (future tense).
SUNDAY'S BIG IDEA:
The right Hope gives our lives the right focus.
We'll center ourselves on the reality that, because of Jesus, a day is coming (hope) where the effect and consequences of sin will be removed from existence entirely. There won't be a trace of brokenness, shame, poverty, death, or anything else that wars against the good that God has for those who love Him. Not only will we be made perfect, but all of the created world will be remade and will function in perfect unity and health.
AN EXAMPLE OF MASSIVE HOPE IN 2 MINS
C.S. Lewis: If you read history you will find that the Christians who did most for the present world were precisely those who thought most of the next. It is since Christians have largely ceased to think of the other world that they have become so ineffective in this.
Cornelius Plantinga: The coming of the kingdom of God represents a final state of cosmic redemption, in which God and God’s creatures dwell together in harmony and righteousness. It represents shalom – universal flourishing, wholeness, and delight... On the one hand, we need to avoid triumphalism, the prideful view that we Christians will fully succeed in transforming all or much of culture... On the other hand, we need to avoid the despairing tendency to write the world off and to remove ourselves to an island of like-minded Christians. The world, after all, belongs to God and is in the process of being redeemed by God... Christians have been invited to live beyond triumphalism and despair, spending ourselves for a cause we firmly believe will win in the end. In a vision lovely enough to break a person’s heart, John shows us that heaven comes to us and renews this world.
Charles Spurgeon: Kill hope in a man, and you have killed the man's best self.
Here's a new (to us) song we'll sing together this Sunday. Enjoy, and endeavor to enter into worship as you do.
COME THOU FOUNT OF EVERY BLESSING