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Sunday Service Recap: March 2, 2014

March 2, 2014

Redeemer Church

Champaign-Urbana, IL

Call to Worship: Praise the Lord Who Reigns Above written by Charles Wesley, performed by Leigh Nash.

This is a great call to worship song.  It is simple and doxological.  It focuses our hearts and minds on the nature and character of God at the beginning of the service and leads naturally into our time of confession.


Congregational Confession of Sin

Reading: Love for God, Pure or False

When we have a spiritual love for God, we do not first see what He can do for us and then see that He is lovely; instead, we first see that God is lovely, and then we see how much He loves us. Our hearts are entirely won by the sight of Christ’s glorious excellence. Our love’s root is in God Himself, and self-love has a hand in our love only secondarily. In contrast, false love begins with the self, and any appreciation of God’s nature is secondary, dependent on the satisfaction of self-interest. When we truly love God, however, this love is the deepest foundation of our lives; all of our other concerns are built on it, and self-love acts only as a servant to our heart’s most basic love. Selfish people, on the other hand, always have themselves at the deepest level of their being, and they try to build on God as the superstructure that rests on this foundation. Even their acknowledgment of God’s glory depends on their private interest.

—Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758), taken from Religious Affections

Song: Blessed Redeemer written by Fanny Crosby

We have sung this new song for the past several weeks as our call to worship as a way of introducing it and allowing people to become more familiar with it.  Today, after hearing from Edwards about what it means to see that God is lovely I thought it would be good to sing Blessed Redeemer as a way of focusing our minds on the person of Christ and the redemption that we have in him.  This is a way of singing the gospel to one another after our time of confession.

SongPsalm 145 written by Dustin Kensrue

Again, continuing to teach a fairly new song to the congregation and highlighting the mercy and compassion of God.  In hindsight, this song probably would have worked better if sung after the Edwards reading.  But either way it’s a powerful song that is worthy of repeating.


Scripture Reading: Psalm 2

Missional Prayer: Kutai people of Indonesia

Song: The Wonderful Cross written by Isaac Watts, Chris Tomlin, J. D. Walt, Jesse Reeves, Lowell Mason

This is a familiar updated hymn.  It’s one of the great new/traditional songs that I believe will be around for many more years.  It’s a great blend of solid doctrinal truth with a chorus meant to exalt the work of Christ and the atonement his death accomplished for us.  But what I particularly love about this song is the way it forces us to consider the paradox of the Christian life.  Christ bids us come and die to our old selves and in that death we find our true life.  Christ says that those who want to follow him must take up their cross.  Deitrich Bonhoeffer said that “when Christ calls a man, he bids him come, and die.”  That’s a profound thought and something that we need to be reminded of time and again.

Song: My Jesus, I Love Thee written by William Featherston

Sermon by Chet Daniels: Ephesians 5:1-2 Purity in Imitation

  1. God’s love for life
  2. Our life for love.

Lord’s Supper

Song: In Christ Alone written by Keith Getty and Stuart Townend

There are very few songs that are as fitting as In Christ Alone after observing the Lord’s Supper.  Singing the gospel story together as a church is a glorious experience when we have just proclaimed the Lord’s death to one another.


Benediction: 1 John 4:7-12


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