September 24, 2017
Before We Worship
Psalm 103 is full of comforting assurance. And the reason it is so full of comforting assurance is because Psalm 103 is so full of the LORD. Ps 103 has very little to say about the circumstances or the people that structure many other psalms. Instead David focuses on the various ways the LORD blesses.
The LORD blesses in many ways. He “works righteousness and justice for al who are oppressed.” David as the king was not often in the position to suffer injustice or face oppression. However, it is the glory of the king to be mindful of those who suffer injustice and are oppressed. David’s care for such people is reflective of his understanding of the LORD, who is “merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.”
Indeed, Ps 103 is a sustained celebration of God’s mercies. “He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities.” Justice demands that punishment fit the crime. But God tempers his justice with mercy, and we do not reap what we sow. And how vast is his love! For “as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgression from us.” The expression “east from the west” conveys the idea of an infinite distance that spans between the reality of our sin and the farthest distance the LORD has flung any remembrance of our sins. “As a father shows compassion to his children, so the LORD shows compassion to those who fear him.” Why so? “For he knows our frame; he remembers that we are dust.”
The LORD’s mercy is as vast as it is deep as it is enduring. “But the steadfast love of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear him, and his righteousness to children’s children.” His mercy is not ephemeral, but endures generation after generation.
Our worship becomes man-centered when it is built around our needs and comforts. Ironically, when man looms large over the horizon of worship, then there can be no real or lasting comfort. But David’s worship, with its determined focus on the LORD’s person and works, actually provides the deepest level of assurance and, even, transformation. Come, then, and worship your LORD. Bless his name. For blessings flow to those who bless the name of the LORD.
Call to Worship
Psalm 103 (reading responsively from TH p. 821)
5 “Psalm 103 (O My Soul With All Thy Powers) — bulletin p. 10.
Trinity Hymnal #731 “Doxology”
Prayer of Invocation
The Reading and Exposition of the Law
James 5:19–20 (p. 1013)
Prayer of Confession
The Proclamation of the Gospel
“There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call—one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.” (Ephesians 4:4–6 ESV)
Trinity Hymnal #551 “How Blest Is He Whose Trespass”
Confession of Faith — The Apostles’ Creed
I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth.
I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, and born of the virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried; he descended into hell. The third day he rose again from the dead. He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of God the Father Almighty. From there he will come to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.
Presentation of Gifts and Offering
The Proclamation of God’s Word
Luke 14:34–35 (p. 874)
Is There a Way Back?
Rev. Ken Han
The Sacrament of The Lord’s Supper
We participate in the Lord’s Supper weekly. We welcome to the Lord’s Table all baptized believers who have sincere faith in Jesus Christ, and regularly worship in a Reformed or evangelical church.
The Lord’s Supper is a sign and a seal of the new covenant blessings. When we participate in the Lord’s Supper with faith, it strengthens our bond with our covenant Lord, Jesus Christ. Thus we participate properly when we come to our Savior with faith and repentance as we renew our resolve to forsake sin and live for his glory.
The Lord’s Supper also renews our bonds with God’s covenant community, the body of believers in the local church. As we receive the Lord’s Supper, we renew our pledge to give ourselves away in loving service.
During the distribution of the bread we will sing Trinity Hymnal #371 “O Lord of Hosts, How Lovely” stanzas 1–2, and stanzas 3–4 during the distribution of the cup.
Trinity Hymnal #707 “Jesus, I My Cross Have Taken”
Family Devotion for the Week
The Shorter Catechism lesson of the week is posted here: Q. 26..
We have some new resources for you at the information table, including several new CCEF mini books, as well as other edifying books. Be sure to check them out!
Upcoming Events and Notices
Every Lord’s Day 10:15 AM: Please join us for Hymnsing, a time of preparing our hearts for worship in praise, and for learning new hymns for worship.
September 24: The Children’s Bible First Catechism lessons will meet (Qs. 55–56). The adult catechism class will resume following the conclusion of the “A Survey of Church History: 100–600” study series.
September 21 (Ligtenberg home): We continue our Sunday study series, “A Survey of Church History: 100–600.” Each study will consist in watching a short video lesson taught by W. Robert Godfrey, with a discussion to follow. If you would like to host a meeting (need TV and DVD player), please let pastor Ken know. We will meet for a light potluck lunch before the study. Also: Oct. 1, Oct. 22, Nov. 5, and Nov. 19.
October 29 (Lord’s Day 6 PM): This year marks the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther posting the 95 Theses, thus beginning the Protestant Reformation. Please join us at the Ligtenberg home as we celebrate with a lesson, food, and fellowship.
(Nursery meets in the Conference Room)
September 24: Kelly Rogers