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The Character Of Jesus Revealed On The Cross (via Fleming Rutledge)

Fleming Rutledge on Jesus’ remaining completely in character while on the cross.
And what a character it is.

Jesus waging a battle on the cross. The whole business of the two thrives dramatises the intensity of his struggle to absorb into himself the malice of those who were reviling him, while at the same time turning his attention toward the one who was looking for a work of redemption. Jesus, in his death as in his life, was entirely directed to the ultimate welfare of others. His entire ministry was directed outward from himself. The kinds of things that preoccupy you and me apparently did not enter his mind. Things like, how am I doing, did I get enough praise today, does that person appreciate me, is that other person over there getting ahead of me, am I slipping behind, am I letting people walk over me – these kinds of things had no hold on him. He was so utterly secure in himself that he was free for others in a way we can scarcely imagine. Therefore, it is exactly in character for him even in the midst of his agony to be mindful of the criminal hanging nearby. Such a thing appears to have been in his nature.

Fleming Rutledge, The Seven Last Words From The Cross, Eerdmans, 2005, p. 75.


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I’ve Seen Too Much by Andrew Peterson

I’ve Seen Too Much, a track from Resurrection Letters Vol. 1 by Andrew Peterson.
The lives of the disciples only make sense in the light of the resurrection.

“I’ve seen so much that cannot be explained
And I realize it’s a mystery of faith
But my friend was dead and He walked out of the grave
And I knew the world would never be the same”


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Whate’er My God Ordains Is Right – Sunday Songs

Whate’er My God Ordains Is Right is Matt Merker’s (with help from Keith Getty) retuning of words originally written by Samuel Rodigast, translated by Catherine Winkworth.

Whate’er my God ordains is right,
His holy will abideth;
I will be still whate’er He does,
And follow where He guideth.
He is my God, though dark my road;
He holds me that I shall not fall;
And so to Him I leave it all,
And so to Him I leave it all.

Whate’er my God ordains is right,
He never will deceive me;
He leads me by the proper path,
I know He will not leave me.
I take, content, what He has sent;
His hand can turn my griefs away;
And patiently I wait His day,
And patiently I wait His day.

Whate’er my God ordains is right,
Though now this cup in drinking
May bitter seem to my faint heart,
I take it all, unshrinking.
My God is true, each morn anew
Sweet comfort yet shall fill my heart;
And pain and sorrow shall depart,
And pain and sorrow shall depart.

Whate’er my God ordains is right,
Here shall my stand be taken;
Though sorrow, need, or death be mine,
Yet I am not forsaken.
My Father’s care is round me there;
He holds me that I shall not fall;
And so to Him I leave it all,
And so to Him I leave it all.


Words: Samuel Rodigast (1675), tr. Catherine Winkworth (1829-1878)
Music: Matt Merker & Keith Getty
© 2018 Getty Music Publishing / Matthew Merker Music (BMI),
Admin. by Musicservices.org.


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Heidelberg Catechism – Lord’s Day 17

Heidelberg Catechism – Lord’s Day 17

45.
Q. What benefit do we receive from “the resurrection” of Christ?
A. First, by his resurrection he has overcome death that he might make us share in the righteousness which he has obtained for us through his death. Second, we too are now raised by his power to a new life. Third, the resurrection of Christ is a sure pledge to us of our blessed resurrection.


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The One Place On Earth No One Should Be Surprised To Find Sinners (via Jared Wilson)

Jared Wilson writes against the niceties that compel Christians (who should no better) to maintain appearances of being okay.
If there’s one place on earth everyone should feel free not to be okay, it’s the church:

I know the reasons we don’t live transparently with each other. We’re afraid. We’re embarrassed. We don’t want to be a burden. We don’t want to be judged!
And I know the reasons others don’t live transparently with us. They’re afraid. They’re embarrassed. We treat them like burdens. We judge them.
And what all of this amounts to is a distrust in God himself. I know people are mean, I know people are judgmental, I know people act weird and get messy and cause problems and are really inefficient for the ways we normally like to do church—but if we believe in the gospel, we don’t have a choice any longer to live in the dark.
How about we stop being shocked to find sinners among the “pious” and start shocking the fearful with grace?

source


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The Idol Factory (preparing for MGPC 29/4/18)

Song: Good And Gracious King
Welcome:
Call to Worship
Song: How Great Is Our God
Prayer Of Confession
Song: My Hope Is Built On Nothing Less
Affirming our Faith: Westminster Shorter Catechism Q26
Song: Now To The King Of Heaven
Bible Reading: 1 Timothy 2:1-15 – Instructions regarding public worship.
Bible Memorisation: James 5:13
Song: We Sing The Praise Of Him Who Died
Bible Reading: 1 Kings 12:25-13:10
Sermon: The Idol Factory
Song: The Church’s One Foundation
Announcements:
Pastoral Prayer:
Closing Blessing
Song: This Is Amazing Grace


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The Communal Action Of Creeds (via Winn Collier)

Winn Collier’s fictional pastor Jonas McAnn writes of the reasons for his inclusion of creeds in weekly worship:

First, it’s important to remember that we don’t just say the creeds – we pray them. The creeds end with Amen. When we pray, we converse with the Holy Trinity, the God of the universe. When we pray these lines from the creeds, we’re not only reciting doctrine, We’re putting ourselves into the right posture again, returning to the place of healing and wholeness, as creature before our Maker. In these prayerful creeds, we acknowledge that we are finite and that only God knows the contours of our desperate hearts and fickle minds. Only God knows our deepest truths.
Second, the creeds do not merely catalog theological facts. They narrate a story, recounting for us God’s actions on our behalf. The creeds assure us that God, in Jesus, has created us and rescued us and that the Spirit guides us even now. We are not alone. Not ever.
Third, the creeds (like every act of prayer) are, by their very nature, communal acts. I side with the Orthodox Christians who say we believe rather than I believe, but no matter the verbiage the creeds’ very existence affirms the essential truth that faith must be something we discern together and strive to sustain together.

Love Big, Be Well. Winn Collier, Eerdmans 2017, pp. 110-111.