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Worship Service for December 17, 2023


Welcome


Call to Worship

Shout joyfully to the LORD, all the earth; Break forth in song, rejoice, and sing praises.

Psalm 98:4


Hymn # 208 O Come, All Ye Faithful

1 O come, all ye faithful, joyful and triumphant, O come ye, O come ye to Bethlehem; come and behold him born the King of angels;

Refrain: O come, let us adore him, O come, let us adore him, O come, let us adore him, Christ the Lord.


2 God of God, Light of Light; lo, he abhors not the Virgin's womb; very God, begotten, not created; [Refrain]


3 Sing, choirs of angels, sing in exultation, sing, all ye citizens of heav'n above; glory to God in the highest; [Refrain]


4 Yea, Lord, we greet thee, born this happy morning: Jesus, to thee be all glory giv'n; Word of the Father, late in flesh appearing; [Refrain]


Call To Confession


Our Lord Jesus says, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ And also, ‘Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.’


"If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us... If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.” Let us, therefore, confess ours sins to the Lord, saying together:

1 John 1:8 (NKJV)


Confession of Sins


Almighty and Gracious Father, we confess to you that we have sinned by not loving you with our whole heart and by not loving our neighbor as ourselves. Our faith is weak, and we easily give in to doubt. Forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness in thought, word and deed. For we ask this in the name of your Son, who is our sure Redeemer and our Savior. Amen.


Word of Assurance


Brothers and Sisters in Jesus, our Gracious Heavenly Father has forgiven us our sins according to His word that "He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins."

Colossians 1:13–14


Doxology # 731


Praise God from whom all blessings flow;

praise him, all creatures here below;

praise him above, ye heav'nly host;

praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Amen.


Scripture Lesson: Isaiah 61:1-11

“The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me, Because the LORD has anointed Me To preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives, And the opening of the prison to those who are bound; 2 To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, And the day of vengeance of our God; To comfort all who mourn, 3 To console those who mourn in Zion, To give them beauty for ashes, The oil of joy for mourning, The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; That they may be called trees of righteousness, The planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified.”

4 And they shall rebuild the old ruins, They shall raise up the former desolations, And they shall repair the ruined cities, The desolations of many generations. 5 Strangers shall stand and feed your flocks, And the sons of the foreigner Shall be your plowmen and your vinedressers. 6 But you shall be named the priests of the LORD, They shall call you the servants of our God. You shall eat the riches of the Gentiles, And in their glory you shall boast. 7 Instead of your shame you shall have double honor, And instead of confusion they shall rejoice in their portion. Therefore in their land they shall possess double; Everlasting joy shall be theirs.

8 “For I, the LORD, love justice; I hate robbery for burnt offering; I will direct their work in truth, And will make with them an everlasting covenant. 9 Their descendants shall be known among the Gentiles, And their offspring among the people.

All who see them shall acknowledge them, That they are the posterity whom the LORD has blessed.”

10 I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, My soul shall be joyful in my God; For He has clothed me with the garments of salvation, He has covered me with the robe of righteousness, As a bridegroom decks himself with ornaments, And as a bride adorns herself with her jewels. 11 For as the earth brings forth its bud, As the garden causes the things that are sown in it to spring forth, So the Lord GOD will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations.

Sermon


Hymn # 217 All My Heart This Night Rejoices vs. 1, 4-7

1 All my heart this night rejoices as I hear far and near sweetest angel voices. "Christ is born," their choirs are singing till the air ev'rywhere now with joy is ringing.


4 He becomes the Lamb that taketh sin away and for aye full atonement maketh. For our life his own he tenders; and our race, by his grace, meet for glory renders.


5 Hark! a voice from yonder manger, soft and sweet, doth entreat: "Flee from woe and danger. Brethren, from all ills that grieve you, you are freed; all you need I will surely give you."


6 Come, then, banish all your sadness, one and all, great and small; come with songs of gladness. Love him who with love is glowing; hail the star, near and far light and joy bestowing.


7 Dearest Lord, thee will I cherish. Though my breath fail in death, yet I shall not perish, but with thee abide forever there on high, in that joy which can vanish never.

Prayer of the Church with the Lord’s Prayer


Let us pray together as Jesus taught us:


“Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power and the glory forever. Amen.”


Hymn # 195 Joy to the World! The Lord Is Come

1 Joy to the world! The Lord is come: let earth receive her King; let every heart prepare him room, and heav'n and nature sing, and heav'n and nature sing, and heav'n, and heav'n and nature sing.


2 Joy to the earth! The Savior reigns: let men their songs employ; while fields and floods, rocks, hills, and plains repeat the sounding joy, repeat the sounding joy, repeat, repeat the sounding joy.


3 No more let sins and sorrows grow, nor thorns infest the ground; he comes to make his blessings flow far as the curse is found, far as the curse is found, far as, far as the curse is found.


4 He rules the world with truth and grace, and makes the nations prove the glories of his righteousness and wonders of his love, and wonders of his love, and wonders, wonders of his love.


Benediction



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