March 11, 2018
Daylight Saving Time begins this Sunday. Please remember to adjust your clock one hour forward!
Before We Worship
Faith not only looks forward to the future enjoyment of its hopes, but makes it possible for us to enjoy it at the present before the fullness of its hope arrives. Consider how Psalm 122, a song of ascent, describes the pilgrimage of the traveling saint. “I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the LORD!” Our feet have been standing within your gates, O Jerusalem!” The pilgrim’s hope is to reach Jerusalem. Indeed, his journey has only just begun. But his feet already stand in the holy city Jerusalem. Even as faith propelled his every step forward, also by that same faith he was already standing, as it were, in the holy city. It is this aspect of faith that is expressed in Hebrews 11:1, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” Hebrews 12:22 also works as the counterpart to Psalm 122. “But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to innumerable angels in festal gathering”. By faith we have already arrived at our desired haven. We have gathered, already, in God’s holy city.
Our pilgrim life is one of already/not-yet. We already stand within the holy city. But our pilgrimage is not yet complete. We already enjoy our hope’s desire. But we have not yet come into a full enjoyment of our festal gathering. These are not contradictory or even nonsensical statements. Both aspects of already/not-yet are very important. If we have an “over-realized eschatology” (i.e. our view of the Christian life is heavily imbalanced in favor of the “already”), then we are bound to be surprised by the sufferings of life, and worse, look without compassion on those that are suffering, as though their suffering is caused by their lack of faith. In many ways, people that lack compassion and the followers of the so-called prosperity gospel are cut from the same cloth.
On the other hand, we might have “under-realized eschatology” (i.e. our thoughts are overwhelmed by what is still lacking in our lives). We are bound, then, to think only of the cross of life, but not the crown. Christian life will seem only a pilgrimage, but never a feast.
But our pilgrim life is both already/not-yet. We laugh. But we also cry. We carry the cross and live a life of self-denial. But we are also seated with Christ in his glory where no wants and needs are denied. What has your pilgrim life been like? Would you say you are overwhelmingly a person who lives in the “already”? Then your worship is a call to remember the “not-yet,” to bow before the suffering Lord and look upon his cross. Or would you say that you are overwhelmingly a person of “not-yet”? Then your coming to worship is a call to be comforted by the Lord who has overcome, who sit glorious over death, suffering, and tears.
Indeed, here is the good news for you. No matter whether you are a person or “already” or “not-yet,” Jesus is exactly who you need. And Jesus will be exactly who you need him to be.
Call to Worship
Psalm 122 (reading responsively from TH p. 831)
25 “On Jordan’s Stormy Banks I Stand”
Trinity Hymnal #731 “Doxology”
Prayer of Invocation
The Reading and Exposition of the Law
1 Timothy 5:1–2 (p. 992)
Prayer of Confession
The Proclamation of the Gospel
“For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.” (1 John 5:4 ESV)
6 “The Lord Will Provide”
The Heidelberg Catechism (1563) — Lord’s Day 11
Presentation of Gifts and Offering
The Proclamation of God’s Word
Galatians 5:1–15 (p. 974)
Freedom in Christ
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 #647 “How Sweet the Name of Jesus Sounds” stanzas 1–3, and stanzas 4–6 during the distribution of the cup.
Trinity Hymnal #520 “Jesus, Thy Blood and Righteousness”
Family Devotion for the Week
The Shorter Catechism lesson of the week is posted here: Q. 34.
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 March we are reading “Liturgy of the Ordinary” by Tish Harrison Warren.
March 11: Please join us for our monthly fellowship meal.
March 11: The Session will meet after the fellowship meal.
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.
(Nursery meets in the Conference Room)
March 4: Yoori Han
March 11: Kelly Rogers