Bulletin 5.16.21

Philippians 2:9-11 "For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the Name which is above every name, so that at the Name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."

A Reflection Before the Service

  • Enemy-occupied territory—that is what this world is. Christianity is the story of how the rightful king has landed, you might say landed in disguise, and is calling us all to take part in a great campaign of sabotage. When you go to church you are really listening--in to the secret wireless from our friends: that is why the enemy is so anxious to prevent us from going. He does it by playing on our conceit and laziness and intellectual snobbery. I know someone will ask me, ‘Do you really mean, at this time of day, to re-introduce our old friend the devil-—hoofs and horns and all?’ Well, what the time of day has to do with it I do not know. And I am not particular about the hoofs and horns. But in other respects my answer is ‘Yes, I do. I do not claim to know anything about his personal appearance. If anybody really wants to know him better I would say to that person. ‘Don’t worry. If you really want to, you will. Whether you’ll like it when you do is another question.’

     

    – C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity (1952; Harper Collins: 2001) 45-46.

     

     

    As long as we’re placing our hope in the Christian’s ability to be kind, rather than the Christ’s sacrificial kindness toward those who deserve anything but, we’re lost.

     

    There is a stark mismatch between our near-infinite ability to talk about kindness (or

    whatever moral value we cherish at the moment) and our ability to actually embody it. The

    starting point for human charity, come to find out, isn’t being sufficiently lectured about it,

    but the receipt of charity when you’re least disposed to expect it.

     

    Which is a long-winded way of saying, I’m grateful that God’s grace is more than a position or a posture. It’s a person.

    – David Zahl, “The Doctrine of Grace vs. The Disposition of Grace: the way you hold a position is oftentimes just as important as the position you hold” (MBird.com; 3.23.21)

     

The Call To Worship

  • Isaiah 45.22-23; Philippians 2.8-11

     

    Turn to Me, and be saved, all the ends of the earth; for I am God, and there is no other. I have sworn by Myself, the word has gone forth from My mouth in righteousness and will not turn back, that to Me every knee will bow, every tongue will swear allegiance.

     

    Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the Name which is above every name, so that at the Name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

     

    (Prayer)

     

  • Enemy-occupied territory—that is what this world is. Christianity is the story of how the rightful king has landed, you might say landed in disguise, and is calling us all to take part in a great campaign of sabotage. When you go to church you are really listening--in to the secret wireless from our friends: that is why the enemy is so anxious to prevent us from going. He does it by playing on our conceit and laziness and intellectual snobbery. I know someone will ask me, ‘Do you really mean, at this time of day, to re-introduce our old friend the devil-—hoofs and horns and all?’ Well, what the time of day has to do with it I do not know. And I am not particular about the hoofs and horns. But in other respects my answer is ‘Yes, I do. I do not claim to know anything about his personal appearance. If anybody really wants to know him better I would say to that person. ‘Don’t worry. If you really want to, you will. Whether you’ll like it when you do is another question.’

     

    – C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity (1952; Harper Collins: 2001) 45-46.

     

     

    As long as we’re placing our hope in the Christian’s ability to be kind, rather than the Christ’s sacrificial kindness toward those who deserve anything but, we’re lost.

     

    There is a stark mismatch between our near-infinite ability to talk about kindness (or

    whatever moral value we cherish at the moment) and our ability to actually embody it. The

    starting point for human charity, come to find out, isn’t being sufficiently lectured about it,

    but the receipt of charity when you’re least disposed to expect it.

     

    Which is a long-winded way of saying, I’m grateful that God’s grace is more than a position or a posture. It’s a person.

    – David Zahl, “The Doctrine of Grace vs. The Disposition of Grace: the way you hold a position is oftentimes just as important as the position you hold” (MBird.com; 3.23.21)

     

  • Isaiah 45.22-23; Philippians 2.8-11

     

    Turn to Me, and be saved, all the ends of the earth; for I am God, and there is no other. I have sworn by Myself, the word has gone forth from My mouth in righteousness and will not turn back, that to Me every knee will bow, every tongue will swear allegiance.

     

    Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the Name which is above every name, so that at the Name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

     

    (Prayer)

     

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