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Christ Church Sunday Morning Service (8:30 am & 10:30 am)

December 11, 2016 @ 8:30 am - 12:30 pm

Announcements & Meditation



– Call to Worship –



+ Adoration
Minister: The Lord is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth. He will fulfill the desire of those who are in awe of Him.
Congregation: He will hear their cry and save them.



Joel 3:10,11
Minister: Lift up your hearts!
Congregation: We lift them up to the Lord!



+ Prayer



+ Hymn

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– Confession –







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Confession of sin
Congregation is invited to kneel if able
Joel 2:12,13



+ Assurance of Pardon
Isaiah 30:26
Minister: Your sins are forgiven through Christ.

Congregation: Thanks be to God!



+ Confession of Faith: Apostles Creed
Minister: Christian, what do you believe?
Congregation: I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, his only begotten Son, our Lord.  He was conceived by the Holy Ghost, and born of the virgin, Mary.  He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried.  He descended into Hades.  On the third day He rose again from the dead, ascended into Heaven, and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence He will come to judge the living and the dead.  I believe in the Holy Ghost, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.



+ Responsive Reading: Heidelberg Catechism: Question 66
Minister:  What are the Sacraments?
Congregation: They are visible, holy signs and seals instituted by God in order that by their use he may the more fully disclose and seal to us the promise of the gospel, namely, that because of the one sacrifice of Christ accomplished on the cross he graciously grants us the forgiveness of sins and eternal life.


+ Hymn
Magnificat…………………………………………..416-19 (SM 14.1)


– Consecration –



+ Scripture Reading
Isaiah 12:1-6; 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24
Reader: The Word of the Lord.
Congregation: Thanks be to God!



Admission of New Members
First Service: Steve and Kelli Harmon and family



First Service: Luke Harmon and Aliza Harmon
Congregational Charge: Little child, for you Jesus Christ came to this earth, struggled and suffered; for your sake He crossed Gethsemane and went through the darkness of Calvary; for your sake He cried: ‘It is finished’; for your sake He died and for your sake He overcame death; indeed for your sake, little child, and you—still— know nothing of it. And thus the word of the apostle is confirmed: ‘We love God, for He loved us first.’
(Taken from an old French Reformed Baptism Rite)



Profession of Faith Baptisms
First Service: Cole Harmon and June Harmon
Congregational Charge: Our brother and sister, for you Jesus Christ came to this earth, struggled and suffered; for your sake He crossed Gethsemane and went through the darkness of Calvary; for your sake He cried: ‘It is finished’; for your sake He died and for your sake He overcame death; indeed for your sake, our brother and sister, and this is what you have heard and believed. And thus the word of the apostle is confirmed: ‘We love God, for He loved us first.




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Congregational Prayer
Opening: Joel 2:27
Thanksgiving: Joel 2:26
Petitions: Joel 2:32



+ Hymn

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First & Second Service: Advent Running Over: Advent III


We have been considering Advent as a time of anticipatory celebration. It is a time of joy, longing, joy, yearning, joy, and preparation. It should not be a time in which you afflict your souls. We do not intend to mark Advent as a penitential season. A penitential season should follow sin, not anticipate deliverance from sin.

But if we emphasize this fact too much, you might start becoming penitential about that. Advent is positive preparation for a positive season. This is a season of joy. So what are we getting ready for? We say no only to prepare for the yes. What is that yes? How do we get ready for that yes? The answer is found in what it means to give.

The Text:
“Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again” (Luke 6:38).

Summary of the Text:
If you look at the verse just prior to this one, you see the grand principle, negatively stated. Don’t judge and you won’t be judged (Luke 6:37). But this street is a two-way street, and the culmination of the principle is found in the giving. Give and it will be given to you. How will it be given to you? The answer is that it will be given to you in great abundance. Men will pour into your chest, meaning that they will fill up your arms. It will be a good measure, pressed down and shaken together, but overflowing anyway. You will be holding the blessing, and standing in the excess.

We are therefore to give in order to receive. We are to give a lot in order to receive a lot. But we are not trying to game the system, figuring out the right time to leave the casino with all our swag. We want to give in order to receive in order that we might be able to give again. The reason we should want to receive is so that we might be able to continue to fund a life of generosity. We give in order to get in order to be able to give again.

God Is an Ultimate Giver:
As dearly loved children, we are to be imitators of God. The God we are to imitate is a giving and generous God. We can see this glorious truth in one of the most famous verses of Scripture. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).

When God urges us to give, He does so in a way that says we should go big or go home. When we give outlandishly, we should be doing it in imitation of Him. When the infinite God gave the sin-darkened world a present, He did it by giving us the present of Himself. God so loved the world that He gave us Himself.

There was no possible gift that could be greater than that. How could God have given more? If He had given us ten thousand mines filled with gold, He could have given us more than that. If God had given us ten galaxies, He could have given us more than that. If He had given us charge of all the seraphim and cherubim, He could have given us more than that. But instead He gave us Himself.

The World is Made of Seed:
If an outlandish gift is given instead of giving yourself, the more extreme it is the more foolish it is. And if a tiny gift is given as a token that represents giving yourself away, then it is received as a universal kind of generosity. This is what was behind the Lord’s praising of the widow who gave away her two small coins. “And a poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, which make a penny” (Mark 12:42, ESV). Jesus said that she gave all that she had, all her living (v. 44). This means she was giving her life away. This means that the poorest of the poor can still imitate God. Imitate Him in the percentages, not in the amounts.

When God gave Himself away, what did God receive back again? He received the cosmos back as His inheritance. Jesus received the nations as a gift because He had given Himself away as a gift. The pattern that God wants us to follow is a pattern that He Himself followed.

The world is made of seed. We can give anything away, and if we give it away in the right frame of mind and heart, what we have given is seed. Anything—time, jewelry, electronics, toys, equipment, tools, conversation, or furniture—is seed.

“But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully” (2 Cor. 9:6).

So Then, a Brief Theology of Christmas Presents:
So you are doing your shopping during Advent. You are thinking about the presents you are getting for others, and that should fill your mind . . . at least more than the presents you are hoping to get.

  • You are to give in imitation. You are an imitative giver. Your gifts are derivative.
  • Your gifts are to represent you, not replace you. Those things which do represent you are to be given away.
  • In order to give properly, you must be eager to receive back again.
  • You give in order to take your rightful place in the process, seedtime and harvest, looking toward the return that is 30, 60, or 100 fold.
  • Do not sneer at the material things surrounding Christmas. Consumer goods are simply instruments for loving other people.

As John Bunyan put it in The Pilgrim’s Progress once:  “a man there was, though some did count him mad, the more he cast away the more he had.”



Ending with The Lord’s Prayer………………………411 (SM 21.1)

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+ Rejoice, All Ye Believers……………..bulletin pg. 6


– Communion –



The Bread
How Lovely Shines  vs. 1-3……………………..220-21

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The Wine
How Lovely Shines  vs. 4-7………………………220-23 (CY 4.1)



– Commissioning –


The congregation may raise hands
Savior of the Nations Come, v.s 6…………………….225
Praise to God the Father sing,
Praise to God the Son, our King,
Praise to God the Spirit be
Ever and eternally.



Charge & Benediction
Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, And to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, to God our Savior, Who alone is wise, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever. Amen. Jude 1:25


December 11, 2016
8:30 am - 12:30 pm
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Christ Church
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