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Epiphany | The Cruciform Church in Culture (January 31, 2021)

Please participate in the following liturgy, reading aloud all the parts in bold italics.

Welcome & Invitation

Call to Worship

Come, let us bow before the holy One.
Come, let us confess God’s might.
Come, let us feel God’s mercy.
Come, let us live in God’s light.
As God’s people, we lift our voices in praise.
Glory to you, gracious and loving God!

Bend your knees,
Bow your heads,
The Lord, great and merciful, is coming!
The Lord, great and merciful, is here!
Open your hearts to God.
Open your arms to God’s embrace.
For the Messiah calls you by name
and claims you as his own.
O Jesus, we exalt you.

Come and behold him, isn’t he fascinating?
Come and behold him, get lost in his majesty.
Come and behold him, isn’t he captivating?
We’ll keep on singing for all of eternity.


O To Be Found

There is no place here on the earth
Away from Your presence, Lord
You know when I rise
You know when I fall
You see my ways

Before a word is yet on my tongue
You say You know it well
And with Your own hands
Have authored my days
Unto Your will

O to be found by You
And to be made Your own
All that I am longs to be held
Safe in Your hands

With all my heart I’m seeking Your face
You are my one desire
Oh how I long to find
And be found by You

The height of the morning, the dead of the night
These are the same to You
Wherever I am
Lord You are there
Before and behind

Just as the water covers the sea
Your Spirit covers me
As high as the heavens
As low as the pit
You are with me still

Wherever I go
Your love and mercy follow me

Prayers of the People

The Lord be with you.
And also with you.
Let us pray together as God’s people:

Living God,
day by day you sustain the weary with your word,
day by day you gently encourage us to place our trust in you.
Awaken us to the suffering of those around us;
save us from hiding in denials or taunts that deepen the hurt;
give us grace to share one another’s burdens in humble service.

Offer a spontaneous prayer for the global Church
(pray in your own home or unmute your microphone and pray aloud all to hear)

You hear us calling,
You hear us calling, O Creator.
Creator of the universe,
you made the world in beauty,
and restore all things in glory.

We pray that, wherever your image is still disfigured
by poverty, sickness, selfishness, war and greed,
the new creation in Jesus Christ may appear in justice, love, and peace,
to the glory of your name.

Offer a spontaneous prayer for our nation and its leaders
(pray in your own home or unmute your microphone and pray aloud all to hear)

O God, make speed to save us.
O Lord, make haste to help us.

We lift up our prayers for the community of friends in this gathering,
Our families, friends, and all whose lives are closely linked with ours –
Jesus, we ask you:
for protection, for healing, for unity, for justice, for hope.

Offer a spontaneous prayer for the community around us
(pray in your own home or unmute your microphone and pray aloud all to hear)

You hear us calling,
You hear us calling, O Creator.
We hold up in your great light those in the darkness of deep pain,
those who suffer, all who are sick,
and the many who are worn down.

Jesus, we ask you:
for fresh strength,
for your nearness,
for Life today,
for Life to come.

Offer a spontaneous prayer for those who are suffering and in need
(pray in your own home or unmute your microphone and pray aloud all to hear)

Lord in Your mercy,
Hear our Prayer.

Scripture: 1 Corinthians 8:1-13

“Now concerning food sacrificed to idols: we know that ‘all of us possess knowledge.’ Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up. Anyone who claims to know something does not yet have the necessary knowledge; but anyone who loves God is known by him.

Hence, as to the eating of food offered to idols, we know that ‘no idol in the world really exists’, and that ‘there is no God but one.’ Indeed, even though there may be so-called gods in heaven or on earth—as in fact there are many gods and many lords— yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist.

It is not everyone, however, who has this knowledge. Since some have become so accustomed to idols until now, they still think of the food they eat as food offered to an idol; and their conscience, being weak, is defiled. ‘Food will not bring us close to God.’ We are no worse off if we do not eat, and no better off if we do.

But take care that this liberty of yours does not somehow become a stumbling-block to the weak. For if others see you, who possess knowledge, eating in the temple of an idol, might they not, since their conscience is weak, be encouraged to the point of eating food sacrificed to idols? So by your knowledge those weak believers for whom Christ died are destroyed. But when you thus sin against members of your family, and wound their conscience when it is weak, you sin against Christ. Therefore, if food is a cause of their falling, I will never eat meat, so that I may not cause one of them to fall.”

The Word of the Lord
Thanks be to God

Epiphany: Rights, Responsibilities & the Cruciform Church in Culture

Confession & Assurance

Most merciful God, we confess that 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.
We are truly sorry and we humbly repent.
For the sake of Your Son Jesus Christ,
have mercy on us and forgive us;
that we may delight in Your will,
and walk in Your ways, to the glory of Your Name.

Silent confession (space to confess our sins and wait in God’s presence).

Almighty God have mercy on you,
forgive you all your sins through our Lord Jesus Christ,
strengthen you in all goodness,
and by the power of the Holy Spirit keep you in eternal life.

The Great Thanksgiving

Now let’s draw near in the presence of our Savior.

The Lord be with you!
And also with you.

Lift up your hearts!
We lift them up to the Lord.

Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
It is right to give our thanks and praise.

And so this day, we join with Saints and Angels
in the chorus of praise that rings through eternity,
lifting our voices to bless you we say:

Holy, Holy, Holy
Lord God Almighty
heaven and earth are full of Your glory,
Glory to you, O Lord most high.

Eucharist & Sacrament of Desire

On the night he was betrayed, took bread,
and when he had given thanks he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying,
“This is my body given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.”

In the same way he took the cup saying,
“This cup is the new covenant sealed in my blood, poured out for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins. Do this as often as you drink it in remembrance of me.”

Now, Lord, we pray that in your mercy and goodness, in the power of your Holy Spirit, you would sanctify this bread and wine to be for us the sacrament of the body and blood of Your Son.

Is the Father with us?
He is.
Is Christ among us?
He is.
Is the Spirit here?
He is.

This is our God.
Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

We are his people.
We are redeemed.

Therefore by taking this bread & drinking this cup,
we proclaim the mystery of our faith:

Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again.

These are the gifts of God for the People of God. Take them in remembrance that Christ died for you, And feed on him in your hearts by faith, with thanksgiving.

Alternatively, for those who are not receiving communion, the Sacrament of Desire may be prayed.

Sacrament of Desire

Now, in union, O Lord with the faithful at every altar of Your Church,
I present to You my soul and body
with the earnest prayer that I will remain united to you.
And since I cannot now receive You sacramentally,
I pray that you would come to me spiritually.
I unite myself to you, and embrace you with my soul’s affection.
Let nothing separate me from you,
that I may live and die in Your love.

We Will Feast in the House of Zion

We will feast in the house of Zion
We will sing with our hearts restored
He has done great things, we will say together
We will feast and weep no more

We will not be burned by the fire
He is the Lord, our God
We are not consumed by the flood
Upheld, protected, gathered up

In the dark of night, before the dawn
My soul, be not afraid
For the promised morning, oh, how long?
Oh, God of Jacob, be my strength

Every vow we’ve broken and betrayed
You are the Faithful one
And from the garden to the grave
Bind us together, bring shalom

2021 Parish Plans: High School Ministry & Neighborhood Groups

The Cross of Christ

All our problems,
We send to the cross of Christ!
All our difficulties,
We send to the cross of Christ!
All the devil’s works,
We send to the cross of Christ!
And all our hopes,
We set on the Risen Christ!

Blessing & Sending

Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

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