Order of Service, May 26, 2024

Introduction

Protect the gospel by strengthening the church. That is a summary of the point of Paul’s first letter to Timothy. The third chapter contains a list of qualifications churches should look for in their leaders. Choosing the right men helps strengthen the church—the wrong men will weaken it. We will explore this list over the next few Sundays.

This is the weekend of Memorial Day, a time when our thoughts turn to the sacrifices many have made in the service of our country. The apostle Paul frequently used elements of military service as metaphors for Christian service. Therefore, the service will include hymns that call us to full devotion in service to our Lord using military metaphors.

PREPARATION FOR WORSHIP

Prelude      

Call to Worship:       Ephesians 6:11-13

Invocation

PROCLAMATION

Hymn (Insert)       I Love The Church

Note: God guards and feeds his flock through the ministry of “under-shepherds” (1 Peter 5:1-3) Paul charged his protégé, Timothy, to teach the churches in Ephesus to appoint the right kind of men to this office. The church is the guardian of the truth (1 Timothy 3:15). Pastors must lead the flock to protect the truth by loving Christ and his church.  

Worship through Giving

Hymn 585     Am I a Soldier of the Cross?

Note: Isaac Watts, calls us to consider this question: “Am I a soldier of the cross, a follower of the Lamb?” The work of standing for gospel truth does not belong to church leaders alone. It is Christian duty. Each of us must respond to Watts’ question, “Increase my courage, Lord; I’ll bear the toil, endure the pain, Supported by Thy word.”

Scripture Reading      Second Timothy 2:1-19

Note: Paul challenged Timothy to pass the truth on to faithful men who could pass it on to others after them. This responsibility applies primarily to those who serve as pastors, but every Christian bears responsibility for this work. Notice how Paul compares the work to serving our “commanding officer” (2:3-4).

Pastoral Prayer

Hymn 589      Soldiers of Christ, Arise

Note: This classic hymn states the Christian’s duty. Echoing Ephesians 6:10-20, Charles Wesley’s famous hymn calls us to put on the panoply (full armor) that God provides, to stand firm, and to yield no ground in this spiritual conflict. We, too, must stand for truth and “win the well-fought day.”

Message: Leadership in the Church: The Right Kind of Pastor, Part 1
Text: First Timothy 3:1-7
Pastor Steven Thomas

RESPONSE

Hymn 560       Take My Life and Let It Be

Notes: We respond with a lyric prayer of consecration. The entire hymn helps us meditate on all aspects of life that the Christian is called to devote to God’s use and glory.

Prayer Response:      Col. Steve Eubank (retired)

Benediction:      John Miles