March 25, 2018
Before We Worship
Every family gathering is predictable in some ways. There are the old and familiar stories that get told yet again. There are also the same rituals and traditions that are repeated. The stories and traditions tie the family together and gives it its unique identity. The same is true of God’s family. The stories that we repeat, and the traditions that we practice, bind us together and define us.
The story that binds us together is the story of our Savior. In particular, as we head into the Passion Week, leading to Good Friday, and then to Easter, we repeat the story of the Son of God “conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried”. The incarnation, the holy life, and the suffering obedience of our Lord was to bring us peace. Zechariah 9 gives us the well-known prophecy of the Messiah entering Jesus riding on the foal of a donkey. What is the significance of this? Note that book of Zechariah is dominated by its earlier visions for the four horses and their riders that bring God’s judgment upon the earth. In contrast, the Messiah comes riding on the foal of a donkey. The point? No one ever rides into a war on a donkey! The prophecy thus points to the end of warfare, the coming of the Prince of Peace, who comes to his people not with wrath, but with gentleness and joy of victory. Indeed, when men crucified Jesus on the cross, they waged their war against God. But Jesus will emerge victorious after his suffering and death in the power of his resurrection. And when Jesus wins his victory, there will be, and indeed there is, peace for us. Thus Jesus no longer comes to us, his people, with wrath, but gently and peacefully.
But do not for one moment forget what Revelation tells us about Jesus. One day he will once again return, not on the foal of a donkey, but mounted on white horse, to wage war against his enemies. We may not let the peace of Christ lead us to careless or even rebellious life. We would do well, then, to hear our Lord’s prayers on the night he was betrayed. In John 17:1–2 Jesus prayed, “Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son that the Son may glorify you, since you have given him authority over all flesh, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him.” The ultimate aim of Jesus’ cross is not our salvation per se, but his glory. Our desires must rise higher than our own safety, and our aspiration must rise higher than our entrance to heaven. Jesus must receive glory, both now and in the future, both in our life and death.
Are you living for Jesus’ glory? May we all say, “Amen.”
Call to Worship
Zechariah 9:9–13 (p. 831)
Trinity Hymnal #9 “All You That Fear Jehovah’s Name”
Trinity Hymnal #731 “Doxology”
Prayer of Invocation
The Reading and Exposition of the Law
John 17:1–2 (p. 903)
Prayer of Confession
The Proclamation of the Gospel
“And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.” (John 17:3 ESV)
Trinity Hymnal #79 “My God, My God, O Why Have You Forsaken Me?”
The Heidelberg Catechism (1563) — Lord’s Day 13
Presentation of Gifts and Offering
The Proclamation of God’s Word
Luke 19:1–10 (p. 878)
They Met at the Tree
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 #426 “Till He Come”! stanzas 1–2, and stanzas 3–4 during the distribution of the cup.
Trinity Hymnal #387 “Now May He Who from the Dead”
Family Devotion for the Week
The Shorter Catechism lesson of the week is posted here: Q. 35.
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.
Join us for “12 for 18” as we read 12 great books in the year 2018. For April we are reading “Mere Christianity” by C. S. Lewis. And for May, “Martin Luther: A Spiritual Biography” by Herman Selderhuis. Please let Janny Ligtenberg know if you would like to order a copy of the book.
March 25 (Lord’s Day): The Session requests all communicant members to attend our annual congregational meeting for the purpose of adopting a new budget for the fiscal year 2018–19.
March 30 (Good Friday 7:30 PM): Join us for Good Friday meditations at the Ligtenberg home at 1411 Margarita Glen, Fallbrook CA 92028.
April 15: The children’s catechism lesson (Qs. 86–87) and the Shorter Catechism lesson (Q. 36) will meet after the worship service.
(Nursery meets in the Conference Room)
March 25: Michelle Kay
April 1: Yoori Han