This order of service is duplicated from the January 13 post. We moved the prepared order to this Lord’s Day because the pastor was ill that week. Special thanks to Mark Buhr for filling in with little advance warning.
The apostle Paul explains to the Corinthians why he continued to speak the message of Christ boldly despite the suffering he endured. His strong faith laid the foundation for his preaching—a faith that was confident that this life is not all there is. He believed that Christ would raise him from death and bring him into His presence, along with all who believed his message. Therefore, Paul’s ministry was for their benefit. And yet, their faith was not the ultimate goal; it all served to magnify the glory of God.
We might summarize Paul’s explanation this way: he spoke boldly by God’s grace and for his glory.
PREPARATION FOR WORSHIP
Call to Worship Revelation 5:9-13
Notes: This marvelous hymn summons us to give praise to God for his grace that saves us and sustains us. “Praise with us the God of grace!”
Worship through Giving
Hymn Insert Doxology
Hymn 73 Holy Savior, We Adore Thee
Notes: Praise to the glory of Jesus Christ flows throughout this hymn. It connects Jesus’ redeemed servants with the suffering Savior: “Should we not with joy expect it / Here like Thee our Lord to be?” It also anticipates the day when our labor gives way to endless praise in the presence of Christ. “Come. Lord Jesus, quickly come.”
Scripture Reading John 17:1-26
Notes: On the night before Jesus died, he prayed for himself (17:1-5), his disciples (17:6-19), and all of us who would believe the disciples’ message (17:20-26). The beginning of this prayer lays the foundational thought that undergirds everything: all is for his glory. The prayer revealed that our work would be difficult, but God will sustain his servants. The encouraging conclusion of this mission is that one day we will be with Jesus and behold his glory.
Hymn 158 Jesus Lives and So Shall I
Notes: Paul gave himself fully to the Lord’s mission with full confidence that this life is not all there is. Knowledge that “Jesus lives and so shall I” fuels and sustains our work for Christ, even when days are difficult.
Message: By His Grace and for His Glory
2 Corinthians 4:13-15
Pastor Steven Thomas
Hymn 643 For All the Saints
Notes: This majestic hymn anticipates the conclusion of our mission. It expresses our desire to stand unified with the saints of God (such as Paul) who have engaged in the gospel mission throughout the centuries. It pulls together themes of the sermon text: our work of publicly confessing the name of Jesus, our inadequacy to engage in the “fierce strife,” the strength we receive from the One whom we serve, and the outcome of it all: a “countless host” one day singing alleluia to Father, Son, and Holy Ghost!
Prayer Response John Miles
Benediction John Miles