Getting Ready for Sunday Jan. 25th 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.

Dave Cover this week continues our series in 1 Corinthians with a sermon entitled, “When Should You Sacrifice Your Freedom?” from 1 Corinthians 8. The Scripture reads,

1 Now about food sacrificed to idols: We know that “We all possess knowledge.” But knowledge puffs up while love builds up. 2 Those who think they know something do not yet know as they ought to know. 3 But whoever loves God is known by God.

4 So then, about eating food sacrificed to idols: We know that “An idol is nothing at all in the world” and that “There is no God but one.” 5 For even if there are so-called gods, whether in heaven or on earth (as indeed there are many “gods” and many “lords”), 6 yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom all things came and for whom we live; and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things came and through whom we live.

7 But not everyone possesses this knowledge. Some people are still so accustomed to idols that when they eat sacrificial food they think of it as having been sacrificed to a god, and since their conscience is weak, it is defiled. 8 But food does not bring us near to God; we are no worse if we do not eat, and no better if we do.

9 Be careful, however, that the exercise of your rights does not become a stumbling block to the weak. 10 For if someone with a weak conscience sees you, with all your knowledge, eating in an idol’s temple, won’t that person be emboldened to eat what is sacrificed to idols? 11 So this weak brother or sister, for whom Christ died, is destroyed by your knowledge. 12 When you sin against them in this way and wound their weak conscience, you sin against Christ. 13 Therefore, if what I eat causes my brother or sister to fall into sin, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause them to fall.

Freedom is just about one of our culture’s most deeply held values. It conjures up images of patriots boldly defying an oppresive English king. But it also is thoroughly contemporary: “live and let live” as Keith pointed out last week. I have the right to make decisions for my life, what’s best, and what I should do and shouldn’t.

So the sermon title brings us up short, “Sacrifice my freedom?” What in the world could be so important that I give up my freedom? Christ died to set us free (Gal 5:1). How could it be a good thing not to live freely? Join us on Sunday as we reflect on what our priorities should be in how we live not just for ourselves but for others.

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

How Great is Our God [lyrics and listen] – Chris Tomlin, Jesse Reeves, Ed Cash

He Holds All Things [lyrics and listen] – David A. Cover, Patrick Miller, Christine Cover, Andrew Camp, Andrew Luley, and Scott Johnson

I’m Yours [lyrics; listen] – Asher Seevinck and Dave Wilton

O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing [lyrics] – words by Charles Wesley; music by Carl G. Gläser; arrangement and additional lyrics by David Crowder and Jack Parker

Prayer of St. Francis [lyrics and listen] – words by Francis of Assisi; music by David A. Cover and Christine Cover

See you on Sunday!

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