Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Gospel Activities | The Lord's Supper: Beholding Beauty and Offering Repentance + March 3, 2018

How beautiful is the Lord's Supper? Is it worth giving a second look? Another taste?

When Emmaus City gathers together for a Sabbath service of worship, one of the primary ways Jesus told us to remember Him and His sacrifice for us was through joining together in His name at the Communion table. It's the meal Jesus joined with His disciples in eating and drinking before His crucifixion (Matthew 26:26-29; Mark 14:22-25). It's the meal the early Church joined together in the "breaking of bread" to partake in (Luke 24:35, Acts 2:42). It's the meal Paul passed along to new local churches in His missionary journeys as this was an important way for the family of God to declare Jesus' death until He comes again (1 Corinthians 11:23-26).

In fact, it's the meal that encompasses the entire Story of God. I love how Peter Leithart puts it in his book, Blessed are the Hungry: 

What happens in holy Communion? ... We, as children of Adam, are offered the trees of the garden; as sons of Abraham, we celebrate a victory feast in the King of Salem’s Valley; as holy ones, we receive holy food; as the true Israel, we feed on the land of milk and honey; as exiles returned to Zion, we eat again and drink wine on the lees; we who are many are made one loaf, and commune with the body and blood of Christ; we are the bride celebrating the marriage supper of the Lamb, and we are also the bride undergoing the test of jealousy; at the Lord’s table we commit ourselves to shun the table of demons. The Lord’s Supper is the world in miniature ... It is not confined to the first day, for its power fills seven. Though the table stands at the center, its effects stretch out to the four corners of the earth.

If it's all of the above and more, how do we turn to the Jesus and the beauty of His presence and offering for us, who sets such a table for us every week that extends into every day of our week?

Old Testament Scripture Reading | Psalm 25:8-18
New Testament Sermon Text | Matthew 26:26-28; Luke 15:11-32

Lord's Prayer | Praying for Jesus' Kingdom Impact in Us and in Worcester

Eucharist | Thanking God for Communion with Christ and His Church

Lenten Corporate Prayer of Confession and Assurance
Isaiah 6:5-8Daniel 9:4-19Nehemiah 1:5-10Luke 23:34

Call: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit:

Wash our minds (touch your forehead)
of all the wrong/hurtful thoughts
that don't honor You or put You first.

Wash our eyes of things we've seen (touch your eyes)
or have caused others to see that don’t please You.

Wash our ears of lies (touch your ears),
cruel and wrong things we've heard
or that others have heard from us.

Wash our mouths (touch bottom lip)
from unkind words we have said,
lies we have spoken, and our grumbling
and complaining that lacks gratitude for You
and for those You have given us to love.

Wash our hearts (touch heart)
from selfish feelings and thoughts,
and desires that are not pleasing to You.

Wash our hands from the ways
(shake and hold them out palms up to dry)
we have used them to selfishly take
for ourselves or cause harm.

Silent Personal Reflection and Confession

Thank You, God, for giving us Jesus
who lived a clean life for us.

Response: Thank You for making us clean in Christ,
and help us live lives in Him that submit to His Word and Spirit
in our hearts and throughout all our body parts.

Jesus I Come
By William Sleeper, minister of Summer St. Congregational Church, Worcester, MA
1887 A.D.

Out of my bondage, sorrow and night,
Jesus, I come, Jesus, I come;
Into Thy freedom, gladness, and light,
Jesus, I come to Thee;
Out of my sickness, into Thy health,
Out of my wanting and into Thy wealth,
Out of my sin and into Thyself,
Jesus, I come to Thee.

Out of my shameful failure and loss,
Jesus, I come, Jesus, I come;
Into the glorious gain of Thy cross,
Jesus, I come to Thee;
Out of earth’s sorrows, into Thy balm,
Out of life’s storms and into Thy calm,
Out of distress into jubilant psalm,
Jesus, I come to Thee.

Out of unrest and arrogant pride,
Jesus, I come, Jesus, I come;
Into Thy blessed will to abide,
Jesus, I come to Thee;
Out of myself to dwell in Thy love,
Out of despair, into raptures above,
Upward for aye on wings like a dove,
Jesus, I come to Thee.

Heal Us
By William Cowper
1779 A.D.

Heal us, Emmanuel, here we are.
We long to feel Thy touch.
Deep wounded souls to Thee we fly.
O Savior hear our cry!

Our faith is feeble, we confess.
We faintly trust Thy word.
But will You pity us the less?
Be that far from You, LORD!

Remember him who once applied
With trembling for relief.
“Lord, I believe,” with tears he cried
“O help my unbelief!" 


She, too, who touched You in the press
And healing virtue stole
Was answered, “Daughter, go in peace
Thy faith has made thee whole.” 


Like her, with hopes and fears we come
To touch You if we may.
O send us not despairing home,
Send none unhealed away.


Augustus M. Toplady
1776 A.D.

Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
Let me hide myself in Thee;
Let the water and the blood,
From Thy riven side which flowed,
Be of sin the double cure,
Save me from its guilt and power.

Not the labor of my hands
Can fulfill Thy law’s demands;
Could my zeal no respite know,
Could my tears forever flow,
All could never sin erase,
Thou must save, and save by grace.

Nothing in my hands I bring,
Simply to Thy cross I cling;
Naked, come to Thee for dress,
Helpless, look to Thee for grace:
Foul, I to the fountain fly,
Wash me, Savior, or I die.

White As Snow

By Jon Foreman
2008 A.D.

Have mercy on me, oh God,
According to Your unfailing love;
According to Your great compassion,
Blot out my transgressions.

Would You create in me a clean heart,
Oh God?
Restore in me the joy of Your salvation.


The sacrifices of our God
Are a broken and contrite heart.
Against You and You alone have I sinned.
(Repeat + Chorus)

Wash me white as snow
And I will be made whole!
Wash me white as snow
And I will be made whole!
Wash me white as snow
And I will be made whole!
Wash me white as snow.

Lord, I Need You
By Chris Tomlin
2011 A.D.

Lord, I come, I confess,
Bowing here I find my rest.
Without You I fall apart.
You're the One that guides my heart.

Lord, I need You, oh, I need You,
Every hour I need You;
My one defense,
My righteousness,
Oh God, how I need You!

Where sin runs deep,
Your grace is more.
Where grace is found is
Where You are.
And where You are,
Lord, I am free,
Holiness is Christ in me!

Teach my song to rise to You.
When temptation comes my way,
And when I cannot stand, I'll fall on You.
Jesus, You're my hope and stay.

Heidelberg Catechism Q&A 76
1563 A.D.

Q. What does it mean
to eat the crucified body of Christ
and to drink His shed blood?

A. First, to accept with a believing heart
all the suffering and the death of Christ,
and so receive
forgiveness of sins and life eternal.
Second, to be united more and more to
His sacred body through the Holy Spirit,
who lives both in Christ and in us.
Therefore, although Christ is in heaven
and we are on earth,
yet we are flesh of His flesh
and bone of His bones,
and we forever live and are governed
by one Spirit,
as the members of our body are
by one soul.

John 6:35, 40, 50-54, 55, 56;
1 Corinthians 12:13; Acts 1:9-11, 3:21;
1 Corinthians 11:26; Colossians 3:1;
1 Corinthians 6:15, 17; Ephesians 5:29, 30;
1 John 4:13; John 6:56-58, 15:1-6;
Ephesians 4:15, 16; 1 John 3:24

Based on Matt. 4:1-11, Mark 1:9-15, Luke 4:1-13

Go now, and live in the death and life of your baptism,
even when you are led into wild and hard places.
With repentance and trust, give yourselves to God,
and with fasting and prayer,
strengthen yourselves against the ways of the tempter.
And may God our Father enfold you in tender and lasting love.
May Christ be beside you in times of struggle.
And may the Spirit guide you back to His way whenever you stray.
Go in peace to love and serve the Lord, His people, and His creation.

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