- Set a time to worship. I recommend keeping 10am on Sundays, but whatever it is, put it on your calendar. Don't just wing it or go by how you feel, because you probably won't get around to it.
- Men, God gives you the job of leading. Go ahead and set a time, make sure you're ready, and lead the worship. Wives and kids, God gives you the job of supporting his leadership. This is something new and requires patience and definitely NOT complaining.
- It's up to you how formal you are. I recommend following an order of service, but you could also listen to the sermons and/or music while driving or eating. Something's better than nothing.
- "Wherever two or three gather in my name, there I am with them."
Intro: Welcome everyone. It's time to worship God, so let's put aside planning and worrying and whatever might distract us, and spend the next few minutes focused on the Lord.
(There is no need to cross yourself here unless you feel comfortable with it and want to.)
Leader: "We worship in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, Amen."
CONFESSION AND ABSOLUTION
Leader: "God is holy, and we are unholy. God is pure and we are impure. God is good and we are so often evil. Let us take a moment to silently confess our sins to God... Father, we confess that we have feared, loved, and trusted other things more than you (pause for silence).... we have not loved each other as we should (pause for silence)...we have done what is evil, and failed to do what is good (pause for silence)... forgive us for Jesus' sake."
Leader: "Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. Your sins are forgiven. You are at peace with God. Amen."
PRAYER FOR BLESSING ON WORSHIP
Leader: "Be with us now as we gather in your name. Bless us through the hearing of your word. Give us hearts that are eager to believe what you promise and obey what you command, through Jesus Christ, our Lord, Amen."
Today we will continue reading the history of Jesus' passion, combining all four gospel account. I removed the responsive readings because it will probably not work for most. I recommend reading this in three parts and pausing to listen to the devotional material after each section, interspersing readings as shown below. But you can do it however you want. Here is a link to the entire passion history if you missed previous weeks and would like to read it at home.
As soon as it was day, the council of the elders of the people met together, both chief priests and experts in the law. They brought Jesus into their Sanhedrin and said, “If you are the Christ, tell us.”
But he said to them, “If I tell you, you will not believe, and if I ask you, you will not answer me or release me. But from now on, the Son of Man will be seated at the right hand of the power of God.”
They all said, “Are you then the Son of God?”
He said to them, “I am what you are saying.”
Then they said, “Why do we need any more testimony? For we ourselves have heard it from his own mouth!” Then the chief priests with the elders and experts in the law, together with the whole Sanhedrin, reached a decision. They bound Jesus, led him away, and handed him over to Pontius Pilate, the governor.
Then when Judas, who had betrayed him, saw that Jesus was condemned, he felt remorse. He brought back the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders and said, “I have sinned by betraying innocent blood.” But they said, “What is that to us? That’s your problem.”
He threw the pieces of silver into the temple and left. Then he went out and hanged himself. The chief priests took the pieces of silver and said, “It is not lawful to put these into the treasury, since it is blood money.” They reached a decision to buy the potter’s field with the money, as a burial place for foreigners. So that field has been called The Field of Blood to this day. Then what was spoken through Jeremiah the prophet was fulfilled:
They took the thirty pieces of silver, the price the sons of Israel had set for him, and they gave them for the potter’s field, just as the Lord commanded me.
IF YOU ARE COMFORTABLE, YOU CAN SIMPLY DISCUSS THIS READING YOURSELVES!
OTHERWISE, LISTEN TO MEDITATION BELOW BY CLICKING "DOWNLOAD FILE" OR PERHAPS JUST "PLAY". IF IT TAKES YOU TO ANOTHER PAGE, JUST CLICK "BACK" WHEN YOU ARE DONE.
THEN SING/LISTEN TO THE FOLLOWING HYMN.
Early in the morning, the Jews led Jesus from Caiaphas to the Praetorium. They did not enter the Praetorium themselves, so that they would not become ceremonially unclean. (They wanted to be able to eat the Passover meal.) So Pilate went out to them and said, “What charge do you bring against this man?”
They answered him, “If this man were not a criminal, we would not have handed him over to you.”
Pilate told them, “Take him yourselves and judge him according to your law.”
The Jews said, “It’s not legal for us to put anyone to death.” This happened so that the statement Jesus had spoken indicating what kind of death he was going to die would be fulfilled.
They began to accuse him, saying, “We found this fellow misleading our nation, forbidding the payment of taxes to Caesar, and saying that he himself is Christ, a king.”
Pilate asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?”
“It is as you say,” Jesus replied.
The chief priests accused him of many things. When he was accused by the chief priests and elders, he answered nothing.
Pilate questioned him again, “Are you not going to answer anything? See how many charges they are bringing against you!”
But Jesus still did not answer anything, so Pilate was amazed.
Pilate went back into the Praetorium and summoned Jesus. He asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?”
Jesus answered, “Are you saying this on your own, or did others tell you about me?”
Pilate answered, “Am I a Jew? Your own people and chief priests handed you over to me. What have you done?”
Jesus replied, “My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would fight so that I would not be handed over to the Jews. But now my kingdom is not from here.”
“You are a king then?” Pilate asked.
Jesus answered, “I am, as you say, a king. For this reason I was born, and for this reason I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”
“What is truth?” Pilate said to him.
After he said this, he went out again to the Jews and told them, “I find no basis for a charge against him.”
NOW FOR THE SECOND MEDITATION AND HYMN
But they kept insisting, “He stirs up the people, teaching all through Judea, beginning from Galilee all the way here.”
When Pilate heard this, he asked if the man was a Galilean. When he learned that he was under Herod’s jurisdiction, he sent him to Herod, who was also in Jerusalem during those days.
When Herod saw Jesus, he was very glad. For a long time he had wanted to see him, because he had heard many things about him. He hoped to see some miracle performed by him. He questioned him with many words, but Jesus gave him no answer. The chief priests and the experts in the law stood there, vehemently accusing him. Herod, along with his soldiers, treated him with contempt and ridiculed him. Dressing him in bright clothing, Herod sent Jesus back to Pilate. Herod and Pilate became friends with each other on that day. Before this they had been enemies of each other.
NOW LISTEN TO THE THIRD MEDITATION
I personally love this song version of the Apostles Creed (click here).
Or you can recite the words. For fun, try to do it from memory. If you need help, click here.
At this time you may write a check and mail it church, as described on this page, which also tells you how to set up online giving.
Also, if you'd like to offer your time, there is still plenty of raking and other outdoor work to do at the church. Contact Jake Laete to get specific instructions, or start with areas closest to the building.
Connection Cards Substitute
Instead of a connection card, leave an encouraging comment at the bottom of this page! Point out something that helped you, or just let everyone know you are praying for them.
Take a moment to ask for prayer requests.
- Remember to include prayers of thanks and prayers asking for things, both for you and for others.
- Remember to ask for spiritual blessings as well as physical blessings.
- It is fine to have a short prayer.
- Bring these thanks and requests to God in your own way, then close
- Leader: "We also pray that you would be with Anna Barton's sister Lois, who is in ICU with the coronavirus in the Seattle area, and with her other sister Tessi, who is having car trouble. Bless our church family, our nation, and the whole world as it deals with the outbreak. Bless our leaders as the national, state, and local levels. Give them wisdom to know what is right and strength to carry it out. And now hear us as we pray the Lord's prayer."
- Say the Lord's Prayer
Leader: May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with us all, now and always. Amen.