November 11, 2018
Before We Worship
Our reflection this week focuses on the Apostles’ Creed’s “I believe in Jesus Christ…crucified, died, and was buried”. The apostle Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 2:2, “For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.” This is notable for a several different reasons. The Corinthians believers had come to understand spiritual maturity as leaving behind the “basic” and “simple” things like Christ’s crucifixion in order to move on to more “advanced” spiritual things. For them that “advanced spirituality” meant refined rhetoric, some vague and nebulous talk about wisdom, and the show of power. It’s funny how their idea of deep spirituality coincided so exactly with the cultural norm of the first century Greco-Roman society. There is in every age an enormous desire to have the kind of Christianity that just happens to look exactly like whatever the culture of the moment finds sophisticated and attractive.
Paul’s idea of deep spirituality, however, was different. He writes in (1 Corinthians 1:22–24, “For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.” The very thing that the first century Greco-Roman society considered weak and foolish, the preaching of Christ crucified, was actually the wisdom and the power of God. The very things the Corinthian believers deemed were too basic and were ready to move on from, the preaching of Christ who was crucified, died, and was buried, were actually the deep things of God. Man always thinks he is wiser than God. But there is no greater fool than he who tries to correct God.
Each worship service and every sermon reveal what we think is truly deep wisdom and actually powerful. Many churches across various theological spectrum believe today there is deeper wisdom than Christ crucified. So both their worship service and the sermons preached are not centrally about Christ’s suffering and death. The silent assumption and conviction driving behind these things is that God’s people need something other than the cross of Christ for wisdom and power for life.
We protest. And we must reform both our worship and the preaching of God’s word according to the word of God. Not because it is right to do so in some abstract and theological sense. But because our lives have consequence and we need wisdom and power. And the only place to find them is the cross of Jesus Christ. God’s word says so (1 Corinthians 1:22–24). And we have no interest in correcting God. So we protest. And we have “decided to know nothing…except Jesus Christ and him crucified.” These are the deep things that will teach us wisdom and give us power.
Call to Worship
‡ 1 Corinthians 1:18–25 (p. 952)
‡ Trinity Hymnal #455 “And Can It Be That I Should Gain”
‡ Trinity Hymnal #731 “Doxology”
Prayer of Invocation
The Reading and Exposition of the Law
Exodus 20:17 (p. 61)
The Heidelberg Catechism (1563) — Lord’s Day 44
Prayer of Confession
The Proclamation of the Gospel
“By this we shall know that we are of the truth and reassure our heart before him; for whenever our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and he knows everything.” (1 John 3:19–20 ESV)
8 “This Is Not My Place of Resting”
Presentation of Gifts and Offering
The Proclamation of God’s Word
Luke 17:7–10 (p. 876)
Christian’s Honorable Service
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 #622 “I Waited for the Lord Most High” stanzas 1–3, and stanzas 4–6 during the distribution of the cup.
Trinity Hymnal #654 “O Jesus, I Have Promised”
Family Devotion for the Week
The Shorter Catechism lesson of the week is posted here: Qs. 43–44.
Upcoming Events and Notices
Please note that the Daylight Saving Time ends this Sunday. Don't forget to fall back 1 hour!"
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.
Join us for “12 for 18” as we read 12 great books in the year 2018. For November we will read Jared Wilson’s “The Imperfect Disciple: Grace for People Who Can’t Get Their Act Together.”
November 11 (Lord’s Day): Please join us for fellowship potluck lunch.
November 25 (Lord’s Day): Please join us as we discuss Jared Wilson’s “The Imperfect Disciple: Grace for People Who Can’t Get Their Act Together”.
(Nursery meets in the Conference Room)
November 11: Michelle Kay
November 18: Yoori Han