SUNDAY 7 MARCH 2021
3rd Sunday of Lent
Call to worship
We have come to worship God. Have we come ready to grow? We have!
Have we come willing to change? We have!
Are we prepared to put our faith into action, to worship God in all we do? We are!
A gathering prayer
Holy God, as we meet today, we ask that you renew our love for you. Open our eyes to see fresh things, open our ears to hear with more clarity, open our minds to recognise new ideas - that we may be willing to grow and change and to become more like your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Prayer of adoration
Father God, we adore you for your patience with your wayward children; for bearing with us when our understanding is skewed and our behaviour wrong. Jesus, we adore you for being with us always, your humanity entwined with ours; for showing us the way in your life and through the Word. Holy Spirit, we adore you for working through us despite our failings; for living in us and enabling us with a strength greater than our own. Father, Son and Holy Spirit, you are wisdom in our world; you flow through creation and consciousness. Our attempts to house you in bricks and mortar are foolish. Come to us as we gather to honour you, and lift the stones form our hearts, so that we may be your Church in word and deed. Amen.
Prayer of confession
Lord, we remember the depth of your love for us, and we repent of our half-hearted discipleship.
We have been called to deny ourselves: forgive us for putting self-interest before the interests of your kingdom; forgive us that Christ’s Lordship in our hearts has been challenged by our ambition, our appetites, our desires and our needs; forgive us for the times when self-interest hindered our care for others. Amen.
Assurance of forgiveness
It’s hard, O Lord, when the message hits home; when we see, in the sins of our forebears, our own; when getting real has toppled our self-styled crowns and the weight of guilt drags us down. But you, dear Lord, always forgive, when in the Holy Spirit we choose to live. And so, we lift our heads bare and humbled, casting aside thinking that was dark and jumbled. In your forgiveness we find light to walk again in the path that is right. Amen.
Exodus 20:1-17. Marcina
Then God spoke all these words:
2 I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery; 3you shall have no other gods before* me.
4 You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. 5You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, punishing children for the iniquity of parents, to the third and the fourth generation of those who reject me, 6but showing steadfast love to the thousandth generation* of those who love me and keep my commandments.
7 You shall not make wrongful use of the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not acquit anyone who misuses his name.
8 Remember the sabbath day, and keep it holy. 9For six days you shall labour and do all your work. 10But the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God; you shall not do any work—you, your son or your daughter, your male or female slave, your livestock, or the alien resident in your towns. 11For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but rested the seventh day; therefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day and consecrated it.
12 Honour your father and your mother, so that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.
13 You shall not murder.*
14 You shall not commit adultery.
15 You shall not steal.
16 You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour.
17 You shall not covet your neighbour’s house; you shall not covet your neighbour’s wife, or male or female slave, or ox, or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbour.
1 Corinthians 1: 18 - 25. Tiana
Christ Is God’s Power and Wisdom
18 The teaching about the cross seems foolish to those who are lost. But to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 19 It is written in the Scriptures:
“I will cause the wise men to lose their wisdom.
I will make the wise men unable to understand.”
20 Where is the wise person? Where is the educated person? Where is the philosopher of our times? God has made the wisdom of the world foolish. 21 The world did not know God through its own wisdom. So God chose to use the message that sounds foolish to save those who believe it. 22 The Jews ask for miracles as proofs. The Greeks want wisdom. 23 But we preach Christ on the cross. This is a big problem to the Jews. And it seems foolish to the non-Jews. 24 But Christ is the power of God and the wisdom of God to those people God has called—Jews and Greeks. 25 Even the foolishness of God is wiser than men. Even the weakness of God is stronger than men.
John 2:13 - 22. Kate
Jesus in the Temple
13 Not long before the Jewish festival of Passover, Jesus went to Jerusalem. 14 There he found people selling cattle, sheep, and doves in the temple. He also saw moneychangers sitting at their tables. 15 So he took some rope and made a whip. Then he chased everyone out of the temple, together with their sheep and cattle. He turned over the tables of the moneychangers and scattered their coins.
16 Jesus said to the people who had been selling doves, “Get those doves out of here! Don’t make my Father’s house a marketplace.”
17 The disciples then remembered that the Scriptures say, “My love for your house burns in me like a fire.”
18 The Jewish leaders asked Jesus, “What miracle will you work to show us why you have done this?”
19 “Destroy this temple,” Jesus answered, “and in three days I will build it again!”
20 The leaders replied, “It took forty-six years to build this temple. What makes you think you can rebuild it in three days?”
21 But Jesus was talking about his body as a temple. 22 And when he was raised from death, his disciples remembered what he had told them. Then they believed the Scriptures and the words of Jesus.
Prayers of Intercession
Concluding with the Lord’s prayer
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil. For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours now and for ever. Amen.
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1 Let all the world in ev'ry corner sing,
"My God and King!"
The heav'ns are not too high,
God's praise may thither fly;
the earth is not too low,
God's praises there may grow.
Let all the world in ev'ry corner sing,
"My God and King!"
2 Let all the world in ev'ry corner sing,
"My God and King!"
The church with psalms must shout:
no door can keep them out.
But, more than all, the heart
must bear the longest part.
Let all the world in ev'ery corner sing,
"My God and King!"
- CHURCH ROAD
- E17 6AR