The sermon text for this Lord’s Day is Luke 15:1-10. Jesus tells two parables to an audience made up of society’s moral outcasts (tax-collectors and sinners). The two parables combine to tell a single story: Jesus’ effort to save even a single lost one (sheep or coin) and the joy that takes place in heaven when a single lost one is found.
The hymns selected for the service echo the shepherd theme of the first parable: His work to seek and save the lost sheep.
PREPARATION FOR WORSHIP
Call to Worship: Psalm 25:4-7
Hymn 243: Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing
Note: With this hymn, we call upon God (the source of every blessing) to enable us to worship as we ought. The composer, Baptist pastor Robert Robinson, wove themes from the sermon text into the lyrics:
Jesus sought me when a stranger,
Wand’ring from the fold of God;
He, to rescue me from danger,
Interposed His precious blood.
Hymn Psalm 23b
Note: This is a beloved and comforting psalm set to music. The composer included a stanza (3) that connects the Shepherd theme of Jesus’ parable in Luke 15:3-7.
Scripture Reading: John 10:1-18
Note: Jesus’ parable (Luke 15:3-7) compares him with a shepherd who seeks a lost sheep. In John 10, Jesus uses the same shepherd metaphor but amplified it to explain that he delivered his lost sheep by laying down his life.
Hymn 335 And Can It Be?
Note: This powerful hymn presents a full-orbed description of Christ’s saving work. It proceeds through his incarnation, humble death, and ongoing intercession. It rejoices in his gift of regeneration and security. The opening verse introduces such great salvation with an expression of amazed wonder: “And can it be . . . Amazing love!”
Message: Joy in Heaven
Text: Luke 15:1-10
Hymn 503: Savior, Like a Shepherd Lead Us
Note: We respond to the message by expressing our utter dependence of Christ, our Shepherd. In the third verse, we identify with Jesus’ audience identified in Luke 15:1 as “tax-collectors and sinner.”
Thou hast promised to receive us,
Poor and sinful tho’ we be;
Thou hast mercy to relieve us,
Grace to cleanse, and pow’r to free.
Prayer Response: Jon Lont
Benediction: John Miles