Getting Ready for Sunday May 18th at The Crossing

On Fridays we post a guide for how to prepare for the upcoming Sunday service. It gives you a chance to read the Bible passage ahead of time, see the song list, and get your mind and heart ready. You can see some of the rationale here.

Keith Simon continues our series in Exodus this week from Exodus 21:1–11 with a sermon entitled, “A Biblical Case for Pierced Ears” (I don’t think it has any reference to me personally). The Scripture reads,

1 “These are the laws you are to set before them:
2 “If you buy a Hebrew servant, he is to serve you for six years. But in the seventh year, he shall go free, without paying anything. 3 If he comes alone, he is to go free alone; but if he has a wife when he comes, she is to go with him. 4 If his master gives him a wife and she bears him sons or daughters, the woman and her children shall belong to her master, and only the man shall go free.
5 “But if the servant declares, ‘I love my master and my wife and children and do not want to go free,’ 6 then his master must take him before the judges. He shall take him to the door or the doorpost and pierce his ear with an awl. Then he will be his servant for life.
7 “If a man sells his daughter as a servant, she is not to go free as male servants do. 8 If she does not please the master who has selected her for himself, he must let her be redeemed. He has no right to sell her to foreigners, because he has broken faith with her. 9 If he selects her for his son, he must grant her the rights of a daughter.10 If he marries another woman, he must not deprive the first one of her food, clothing and marital rights. 11 If he does not provide her with these three things, she is to go free, without any payment of money.

Clearly the Book of Exodus has shifted. This is not the rousing story of God parting the Red Sea to free his people from the tyrannical Pharaoh. This is not the terse yet rich 10 Commandments that summarize what God requires of his people. This is the very specific, and seemingly irrelevant now, set of instructions on how to own other Israelites as slaves. What in the world could this have to do with us? And why would the Bible apparently endorse the institution of slavery? Yet actually understood in the big picture of the Bible, this passage does speak to us today. Join us on Sunday as Keith unpacks these verses for us in Columbia, USA in the 21st century.

We will introduce a new song on Sunday, “My One Comfort,” by Dustin Kensrue. We’ve been singing other songs by him recently, including “It Is Finished,” “Rejoice,” and “Suffering Servant”. “My One Comfort” is drawn from the first question of the Heidelberg Catechism, which asks, “What is my one comfort in life and death?” The answer is, “That I am not my own, but belong—body and soul, in life and death—to my faithful Savior, Jesus Christ.” This song is a stirring call to joy and encouragement that Jesus alone is our hope.

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

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

O Help My Unbelief [lyrics; listen] – words by Isaac Watts; music by Justin Smith

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

A Place for You [listen] – Christine Cover, Chris Binkley, Andrew Camp, Jake Wandel, Molly Cover, and David Cover

My One Comfort [lyrics; listen] – Dustin Kensrue

Amazing Grace [lyrics; listen] – John Newton; arranged by Page CXVI

See you on Sunday!

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