Call to Worship
Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles!
Laud Him, all you peoples!
For His merciful kindness is great toward us,
And the truth of the Lord endures forever.
Praise the Lord!
Psalm 117:1–2 (NKJV)
Hymn # 7 From All That Dwell below the Skies
1 From all that dwell below the skies let the Creator’s praise arise; let the Redeemer’s name be sung through every land, by every tongue.
2 In every land begin the song; to every land the strains belong. In cheerful sound all voices raise and fill the world with joyful praise.
3 Eternal are your mercies, Lord; eternal truth attends your word. Your praise shall sound from shore to shore till suns rise and set no more.
Call To Confession
And God spoke all these words, saying:
2 “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
3 You shall have no other gods before Me.
4 You shall not make for yourself a carved image...5 you shall not bow down to them nor serve them.
7 You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain.
8 Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.
12 Honor your father and your mother.
13 You shall not murder.
14 You shall not commit adultery.
15 You shall not steal.
16 You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
17 You shall not desire...anything that is your neighbor’s.
I acknowledged my sin to You,
And my iniquity I have not hidden.
I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,”
And You forgave the iniquity of my sin.
For this cause everyone who is godly shall pray to You
In a time when You may be found.
Psalm 32:5–6 (NKJV)
Confession of Sins
Let us, therefore, confess our sin, saying together:
“Have mercy upon me, O God, according to Your lovingkindness; according to the multitude of Your tender mercies, blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgressions, and my sin is always before me... Hide Your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities” through Jesus your Son. Amen.
Word of Assurance
For as the heavens are high above the earth,
So great is His mercy toward those who fear Him;
As far as the east is from the west,
So far has He removed our transgressions from us.
As a father pities his children,
So the Lord pities those who fear Him.
Psalm 103:11–13 (NKJV):
Song of Renewal
Gracious God my heart renew,
Make my spirit right and true;
Cast me not away from thee,
Let thy Spirit dwell in me;
Thy salvation's joy impart.
Steadfast make my willing heart.
#486, stanza 5 (Ps 51:10-11)
Scripture Lessons: Matthew 2:1–18 (NKJV)
1 Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem,
2 saying, “Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the East and have come to worship Him.”
3 When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him. 4 And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born. 5 So they said to him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for thus it is written by the prophet: 6 ‘But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are not the least among the rulers of Judah; for out of you shall come a Ruler who will shepherd My people Israel.’ ” 7 Then Herod, when he had secretly called the wise men, determined from them what time the star appeared. 8 And he sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and search carefully for the young Child, and when you have found Him, bring back word to me, that I may come and worship Him also.”
9 When they heard the king, they departed; and behold, the star which they had seen in the East went before them, till it came and stood over where the young Child was. 10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceedingly great joy. 11 And when they had come into the house, they saw the young Child with Mary His mother, and fell down and worshiped Him. And when they had opened their treasures, they presented gifts to Him: gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
12 Then, being divinely warned in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed for their own country another way. 13 Now when they had departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream, saying, “Arise, take the young Child and His mother, flee to Egypt, and stay there until I bring you word; for Herod will seek the young Child to destroy Him.” 14 When he arose, he took the young Child and His mother by night and departed for Egypt, 15 and was there until the death of Herod, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord through the prophet, saying, “Out of Egypt I called My Son.”
16 Then Herod, when he saw that he was deceived by the wise men, was exceedingly angry; and he sent forth and put to death all the male children who were in Bethlehem and in all its districts, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had determined from the wise men. 17 Then was fulfilled what was spoken by Jeremiah the prophet, saying:
18 “A voice was heard in Ramah,
Lamentation, weeping, and great mourning,
Rachel weeping for her children,
Refusing to be comforted,
Because they are no more.”
Hymn # We Three Kings of Orient Are (insert)
1 We three kings of Orient are; bearing gifts we traverse afar, field and fountain, moor and mountain, following yonder star.
Refrain: O star of wonder, star of night, star with royal beauty bright, westward leading, still proceeding, guide us to thy perfect light!
2 Born a King on Bethlehem's plain, gold I bring to crown him again, King forever, ceasing never, over us all to reign. [Refrain]
3 Frankincense to offer have I; incense owns a deity nigh; prayer and praising, gladly raising, worshiping God Most High. [Refrain]
4 Myrrh is mine; its bitter perfume breathes a life of gathering gloom; sorrowing, sighing, bleeding, dying, sealed in the stone-cold tomb. [Refrain]
5 Glorious now behold him arise; King and God and Sacrifice: Alleluia, Alleluia! sounds through the earth and skies. [Refrain]
Prayer of the Church and the Lord’s Prayer
“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 # 34 The God of Abraham Praise (1-3)
1 The God of Abraham praise, who reigns enthroned above, Ancient of everlasting days and God of love. Jehovah! Great I AM! by earth and heav'n confessed; I bow and bless the sacred name, forever blest.
2 The God of Abraham praise, at whose supreme command from earth I rise, and seek the joys at his right hand. I all on earth forsake, its wisdom, fame, and pow'r, and him my only portion make, my shield and tow'r
3 He by himself hath sworn, I on his oath depend; I shall, on eagles' wings upborne, to heav'n ascend, I shall behold his face, I shall his pow'r adore, and sing the wonders of his grace forevermore.
Hymn # 34 The God of Abraham Praise (4-6)
4 The goodly land I see, with peace and plenty blest, a land of sacred liberty and endless rest. There milk and honey flow, and oil and wine abound, and trees of life forever grow, with mercy crowned.
5 There dwells the Lord our King, the Lord our Righteousness, triumphant o'er the world and sin, the Prince of Peace. On Zion's sacred height his kingdom he maintains, and glorious with his saints in light forever reigns.
6 The whole triumphant host gives thanks to God on high; "Hail, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost!" they ever cry. Hail Abraham's God and mine! I join the heav'nly lays; all might and majesty are thine, and endless praise.