Getting Ready for Sunday August 16th at The Crossing

Prepare

Worship on a Sunday starts before Sunday morning. That’s true not just for the band and the pastor and tech crew but for all of us. When you prepare ahead of time, you are getting yourself in the right frame of mind and heart. It gives you a chance to read the Bible passage in advance, see the song list, and get yourself ready. You can see some of the rationale here.

Keith Simon continues our sermon series, “Life According to the Psalms,” with a sermon entitled “Are You Embarrassed of God?” from Psalm 109. The Scripture reads,

1 My God, whom I praise,
do not remain silent,
2 for people who are wicked and deceitful
have opened their mouths against me;
they have spoken against me with lying tongues.
3 With words of hatred they surround me;
they attack me without cause.
4 In return for my friendship they accuse me,
but I am a man of prayer.
5 They repay me evil for good,
and hatred for my friendship.

6 Appoint someone evil to oppose my enemy;
let an accuser stand at his right hand.
7 When he is tried, let him be found guilty,
and may his prayers condemn him.
8 May his days be few;
may another take his place of leadership.
9 May his children be fatherless
and his wife a widow.
10 May his children be wandering beggars;
may they be driven from their ruined homes.
11 May a creditor seize all he has;
may strangers plunder the fruits of his labor.
12 May no one extend kindness to him
or take pity on his fatherless children.
13 May his descendants be cut off,
their names blotted out from the next generation.
14 May the iniquity of his fathers be remembered before the Lord;
may the sin of his mother never be blotted out.
15 May their sins always remain before the Lord,
that he may blot out their name from the earth.

16 For he never thought of doing a kindness,
but hounded to death the poor
and the needy and the brokenhearted.
17 He loved to pronounce a curse—
may it come back on him.
He found no pleasure in blessing—
may it be far from him.
18 He wore cursing as his garment;
it entered into his body like water,
into his bones like oil.
19 May it be like a cloak wrapped about him,
like a belt tied forever around him.
20 May this be the Lord’s payment to my accusers,
to those who speak evil of me.

21 But you, Sovereign Lord,
help me for your name’s sake;
out of the goodness of your love, deliver me.
22 For I am poor and needy,
and my heart is wounded within me.
23 I fade away like an evening shadow;
I am shaken off like a locust.
24 My knees give way from fasting;
my body is thin and gaunt.
25 I am an object of scorn to my accusers;
when they see me, they shake their heads.

26 Help me, Lord my God;
save me according to your unfailing love.
27 Let them know that it is your hand,
that you, Lord, have done it.
28 While they curse, may you bless;
may those who attack me be put to shame,
but may your servant rejoice.
29 May my accusers be clothed with disgrace
and wrapped in shame as in a cloak.

30 With my mouth I will greatly extol the Lord;
in the great throng of worshipers I will praise him.
31 For he stands at the right hand of the needy,
to save their lives from those who would condemn them.

This is a hard prayer. How do we pray for God to make someone’s children wandering beggars? Can we pray that? Jesus taught us to forgive and love our enemies. How in the world does Psalm 109 fit with that? These are not easy questions. Join us on Sunday for how we should understand and apply this challenging psalm.

We will take communion together this Sunday. God gives us communion to feed our faith, to help us trust in Christ’s death on our behalf. That means we have to reflect on why Christ died for us. We have to look again at ourselves and recognize our sin and ask God for forgiveness. A great way to get ready for communion, therefore, is to take some time this weekend to ask God to show you if there’s any sin in your life that you’re not seeing. Ask him for forgiveness. And if there are things you need to put right, in keeping with repentance, take the time this weekend to do it before Sunday morning (e.g., Matt 5:23–24).

Here’s our song list for this Sunday (with links to lyrics and music)

See the Conqueror Mounts in Triumph [lyrics and listen] – words by Christopher Wordsworth; music by Christine Cover, David A. Cover, Rhett Johnson, Andrew Luley, Ryan Ponder, and Greg Wiele

Holy (Jesus You Are) [lyrics and listen]– Jason Ingram, Matt Redman, and Jonas Myrin

It’s You [lyrics; listen] – Asher Seevinck and David Wilton

Jesus Paid it All [lyrics; listen] – Elvina M. Hall; arranged by King’s Kaleidoscope

In Christ Alone [lyrics and listen] – Stuart Townend and Keith Getty; arranged by King’s Kaleidoscope

A Mighty Fortress is Our God [lyrics and listen] – words Martin Luther; translated by Frederic Hedge; music by Christine Cover and Greg Wiele

Before the Throne of God Above [lyrics and listen] – words by Charitie Lee Bancroft; music by Vikki Cook

See you on Sunday!

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