October 17, 2021 - Home Worship Service

October 17, 2021

Call to worship: Psalm 104:1-9, 24, 35c

L: Bless the LORD, O my soul. O LORD my God, You are very great. You are clothed with honor and majesty, wrapped in light as with a garment. You stretch out the heavens like a tent, You set the beams of Your chambers on the waters, You make the clouds Your chariot, You ride on the wings of the wind,

You make the winds Your messengers, fire and flame Your ministers.

P: You set the earth on its foundations, so that it shall never be shaken.

You cover it with the deep as with a garment; the waters stood above the mountains.

L: At Your rebuke they flee; at the sound of Your thunder they take to flight.

They rose up to the mountains, ran down to the valleys to the place that You appointed for them.

P: You set a boundary that they may not pass, so that they might not again cover the earth.

O LORD, how manifold are Your works! In wisdom You have made them all; the earth is full of Your creatures.

ALL: Praise the LORD!

Hymn The Church in the Wildwood

1    There’s a church in the valley by the wildwood, No lovelier spot in the dale;

      No place is so dear to my childhood As the little brown church in the vale. 

Chorus:  Come to the church in the wildwood, Oh, come to the church in the vale;

No place is so dear to my childhood As the little brown church in the vale. 

2    Oh, come to the church in the wildwood, To the trees where the wild flowers bloom;

      Where the parting hymn will be chanted, We will weep by the side of the tomb.

3    How sweet on a clear Sunday morning, To list to the clear ringing bell;

      Its tones so sweetly are calling, Oh, come to the church in the vale.

4    From the church in the valley by the wildwood, When day fades away into night,

      I would fain from this spot of my childhood Wing my way to the mansions of light. 

Morning prayer

Lord, You have shown us countless times that You are here for us, yet we are slow to trust. We turn to worldly providers and hope things will work out. We resort to vices and devices to numb our pain, but the pain still exists. Help us, O God, to place all of hope, dreams, fears, plans, and doubts in Your capable hands. Amen.  (Discipleship Ministries)

Children’s message: Scripture: Job 38:1-7

Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind: “Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge? Gird up your loins like a man, I will question you, and you shall declare to Me.

“Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell Me, if you have understanding. Who determined its measurements—surely you know! Or who stretched the line upon it? On what were its bases sunk, or who laid its cornerstone when the morning stars sang together and all the heavenly beings shouted for joy?

Let me tell you a little bit about Job. Job loved God and he was a wealthy man. There is a wrong assumption made about the relationship between God and wealth. People believed and continue to believe, wrongly, that if you were wealthy, you had gained God’s favor. Put simply, God loved you more. What you have is a reflection of how God feels about you. If you were wealthy and blessed, God loved you and on the flip side, if you were poor or not a valued part of society, God did not like you, maybe the sentiment would be so strong as to say hate. The implication being there was something wrong with you if you weren’t blessed or had bad things happen to you.

Anyway, God and Satan were having a discussion and Job was brought up. God says, see how he loves Me and Satan replies, well if he weren’t wealthy and blessed, Job would desert God. Well long story short, Job loses everything – property, family, livestock and wealth, and stays true to God. But Job does have some questions for God and we are seeing God’s response in the verses we heard today. Yet, it does ask us or should cause us to ask a few questions ourselves. What do we expect when we come into the presence of God? Are we ready for a mighty encounter? One that changes the way we see the world and see God. The book of Job is proof that God is not as tame as we have made God out to be.

Let us pray:

Holy God, ready us to see Your movement among us. You are the Almighty God of the universe and we need to be shaken out of our comfort of making You to be too small. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Prayers of Intercession:  Thank You, Father, for the opportunity to intercede for the ones most dear to us, and for those on the hearts of others.  Thank You Jesus, for teaching us this prayer: Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.  For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever.  Amen. 

Offering Spotlight:  Missions designates money to the Orangeville Manor, a home for a number of military veterans.    

Offertory prayer:  God of great blessing, but even greater lessons, remind us again who gives life and who receives it. Sometimes, like Job, we need to have our questioning answered with a lesson – we need to learn that we are not the ones in charge in the universe. The gifts we bring this morning are not a down payment toward future favor, but a token of a debt we will never be able to repay. May we gain wisdom in the giving, and may these gifts be blessed for Your glory, not ours. In Christ, we pray. Amen. (Discipleship Ministries)

Preparation Hymn: #421 Make Me a Captive

1    Make me a captive, Lord, and them I shall be free. 

      Force me to render up my sword, and I shall conqueror be.

I sink in life’s alarms when by myself I stand;

imprison me within Thine arms, and strong shall be my hand.

2    My heart is weak and poor until it master find;

      it has not spring of action sure, it varies with the wind.

It cannot freely move till Thou hast wrought its chain;

enslave it with Thy matchless love, and deathless it shall reign.

3    My power is faint and low till I have learned to serve,

      it lacks the needed fire to glow, it lacks the breeze to nerve.

It cannot drive the world until itself be driven;

its flag can only be unfurled when Thou shalt breathe from heaven. 

4    My will is not my own till Thou hast made it Thine;

      if it would reach a monarch’s throne, it must its crown resign.

It only stands unbent amid the clashing strife,

when on Thy bosom it has leant, and found in Thee its life. 

Message scripture: Mark 10:35-45

James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came forward to Him and said to Him, “Teacher, we want You to do for us whatever we ask of You.” And He said to them, “What is it you want Me to do for you?” And they said to Him, “Grant us to sit, one at Your right hand and one at Your left, in Your glory.” But Jesus said to them, “You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, or be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?” They replied, “We are able.” Then Jesus said to them, “The cup that I drink you will drink; and with the baptism with which I am baptized, you will be baptized; but to sit at My right hand or at My left is not Mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared.”

When the ten heard this, they began to be angry with James and John. So Jesus called them and said to them, “You know that among the Gentiles those whom they recognize as their rulers lord it over them, and their great ones are tyrants over them. But it is not so among you; but whoever wishes to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you must be slave of all. For the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”

Message:  The Lessons of the 10th Chapter of Mark

The 10th chapter of Mark is heavy stuff, yet it affects us all. These are Jesus’ teachings on love, money, and power, and honestly, I have never seen anything good come from the three of those together. They are what I could call the trifecta of what can go wrong with us when we are too much of the world, we look to have the “rewards” of the world.

Now, that may sound harsh and it is harsh, the harsh reality of who we can become when we quit focusing on the kingdom goals of Jesus. We look for love to fulfill us, our wealth to sustain us, and power to quell those who would oppose us.

And, at the very heart of James and John’s request is power and prestige.

Let’s look at James and John’s relationship with Jesus, up to this point. They were called together to come follow Jesus. Some scholars allude to a familiar relationship, that is they might have been cousins to Jesus. They were fishermen with Peter. They are rough around the edges and tend to blurt things out, before they think them through. Much like the request they made of Jesus.

That request was to be put at Jesus' right and left hand, to be placed in places of honor and power. What they don’t understand is the kingdom is not about the power they are hoping for. In much the same way as Judas the Zealot – they were hoping for an earthly kingdom.

These two men would have grown up with the stories and the mythologies of the Maccabees. The great Jewish revolt. It is from the stories of regaining the Temple from Syrian and Greek forces, who had in 167 BCE dedicated the Temple in Jerusalem to Zeus, they would base their futures with Jesus on. The Maccabees reclaimed the Temple in 165 BCE and rededicated it to God. This is where the Festival of Hanukkah originates. They were looking for Jesus to make an earthly kingdom, of which they wanted to be an important part, but that wasn’t God’s plan in the coming of Jesus. Jesus is pointing to a kingdom, they cannot comprehend, yet.

We have two kingdoms clashing in this moment, the earthly kingdom James and John are looking for and the Kingdom of God that Jesus is ushering in. And we stand at the same moment today and only one will prevail. The only question is, which one will you choose?

Jesus tells us the way of His kingdom is to be a servant to it and the kingdom is made up of people, not ideals. There is no earthly glory in it, only persecution and humiliation – reversing what the world prizes and uplifting those in the most need of help in this world. Learning to not see ourselves as center, but in service to the center, who is God. There will be things we need to unlearn, beliefs we will need to let go of, allegiances and alliances, all to be of use to the kingdom.

The only one who can choose for you, is you. Is it the earthly kingdom, where love, wealth and power rule over people or the Kingdom of God where love, abundance and the power of the Holy Spirit abound.

Let us pray: Holy God, You place before us the decision to follow Jesus and usher in the Kingdom here or work against and deny it. We know You will reign with or without us, yet stir our hearts to be present in the building of Your kingdom here. Convict us of where we have gone wrong, where we have placed our love and thirst for power ahead of our love for and of You. Right our wrongs, bring us into servant thinking, not that we may be used up, but that by our devotion others are lifted up and reap the benefits of Your Kingdom. In Jesus’ victorious name. Amen.

Closing Hymn Go Now in Peace

Go now in peace.  Never be afraid. God will go with you each hour of ev’ry day.

Go now in faith, steadfast strong and true.  Know He will guide you in all you do.

Go now in love and show you believe.  Reach out to others so all the world can see.

God will be there watching from above.

Go now in peace, in faith, and in love. 

Benediction:  Go into this week with the blessings of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

 

 

 

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