Celebration of Joy
for the Community.
Modern Song Focus on Contemporary Church Artists
performing hymns of traditional foundation.
Everyone is Welcome!
Faith, Hope, Love, Joy in our pursuit of Advent preparation for the birth of our Savior Christ. Today’s focus is Joy.
In today’s Gospel reading, Matthew tells us that it is the Lord that appeared to Joseph in a dream to inform him that her child is conceived of the Holy Spirit, and he should not fear taking her as his wife. He goes on to describe the important details of their new arrival. The child will fulfill Biblical prophecy. Joseph awoke and took Mary as his wife.
In our Old Testament reading today, the prophet Isaiah tells us the story of the interaction with trusting Ahaz. A young woman will bear a son and name Him Immanuel, or God with Us! Trust in God! Isaiah foretells that Ahaz will see two fearful kings deserted. Unfortunately for Ahaz, he failed to embrace the proclamation, sought alliances instead of the seed the Lord wanted planted, and his kingdom as he knew it became one of the fallen to Assyria. The Lord did not forget His people. He brought them the prophecy fulfilled, The Lord is with You!
In Psalm 80, David orchestrates our emotional Christmas Birth of the Savior prophecy fulfillment. David is crying out for Salvation. So much time passing, so many sinful behaviors engaged, yet David trusts in the forgiving and promise fulfilling Lord. We have much to learn from this example today.
Apostle Paul’s Letter to the Romans draws a straight line from prophecy to the Savior, Son of God, descended from David. Paul tells the Romans and us that we are the Lords beloved, called by Him to be saints, blessing us with grace and peace. Joyful, Joyful our response to this proclamation!
O come, O come, Emmanuel, and ransom captive Israel
John Mason Neale (1851).
Old Testament: Isaiah 7:10-16.
Psalm: Psalm 80:1-7; Psalm 80:17-19.
New Testament: Romans 1:1-7.
Gospel: Matthew 1:18-25.
O God of Elizabeth and Mary, you visited your servants with news of the world’s redemption in the coming of the Savior.
Make our hearts leap with joy, and fill our mouths with songs of praise, that we may announce glad tidings of peace, and welcome the Christ in our midst. Amen.
Brothers and sisters, as we joyfully await the glorious coming of the Christ, let us pray for the needs of the church, our community, and the world.
Prayers of the People;
God of promise, you have given us a sign of your love through the gift of Jesus Christ, our Savior, who was promised from ages past. We believe as Joseph did the message of your presence whispered by an angel,
and offer our prayers for your world, confident of your care and mercy for all creation. Amen.
I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth. And in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord; who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary; suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and buried; He descended into hell; the third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and sits on the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from there He shall come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit; the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints; the forgiveness of sins; the resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting. Amen. (Book of Concord).
Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name, Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen. (Book of Concord). (Matthew 6:9-13).
Liturgy of the Eucharist
Handshake of Peace
The Apostle John proclaims, If we confess our sins He who is faithful and just will forgive our sins, and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9.
Most merciful God, we confess that we are by nature sinful and unclean. We have sinned against You in thought, word and deed, by what we have done and by what we have left undone. We have not loved You with our whole heart. We have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. For the sake of Your Son, Jesus Christ, have mercy on us. Forgive us, renew us, and lead us so that we may delight in Your will and walk in Your ways to the glory of Your holy name. Amen.
Do You Hear What I Hear
Institution of the Lord’s Supper
Now as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and after blessing it broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, “Take, eat; this is my body.” He took a cup, and when he had given thanks he gave it to them, saying, “Drink of it, all of you, for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. – Matthew 26:26-28 (ESV).
Shepherd of Israel, may Jesus, Emmanuel and son of Mary, be more than just a dream in our hearts. With the apostles, prophets, and saints, save us, restore us, and lead us in the way of grace and peace, that we may bear your promise into the world. Amen.
The Lord bless you and keep you; The Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; The Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace. Numbers 6:24-26.
The Service has ended. Go in Peace.
Thanks be to God.