01/09/2019: “A” – ADORE, ACT
Psalm 46:10 “Calm down and know that I am God”
Luke 11:1 “Lord teach us to pray”
P = Practice Prayer, Presence of God, Praise, Peace
R = Reflect, Review, Repent, Rejoice
A = Ask, Abide, Accept … Adore, Act[i]
Y = ….
To PRAY is to come into God’s presence, to pray is to change, to be transformed and made new!
Call to Worship[ii]: Psalm 8
1 O Lord, our Lord, your majestic name fills the earth!
Your glory is higher than the heavens.
2 You have taught children and infants
to tell of your strength,
silencing your enemies
and all who oppose you.
3 When I look at the night sky and see the work of your fingers—
the moon and the stars you set in place—
4 what are mere mortals that you should think about them,
human beings that you should care for them?
5 Yet you made them only a little lower than God
and crowned them with glory and honour.
6 You gave them charge of everything you made,
putting all things under their authority—
7 the flocks and the herds
and all the wild animals,
8 the birds in the sky, the fish in the sea,
and everything that swims the ocean currents.
9 O Lord, our Lord, your majestic name fills the earth!
OT Reading: Isaiah 6:1-8
Isaiah’s Cleansing and Call
1 It was in the year King Uzziah died that I saw the Lord. He was sitting on a lofty throne, and the train of his robe filled the Temple. 2 Attending him were mighty seraphim, each having six wings. With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they flew. 3 They were calling out to each other,
“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of Heaven’s Armies!
The whole earth is filled with his glory!”
4 Their voices shook the Temple to its foundations, and the entire building was filled with smoke.
5 Then I said, “It’s all over! I am doomed, for I am a sinful man. I have filthy lips, and I live among a people with filthy lips. Yet I have seen the King, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.”
6 Then one of the seraphim flew to me with a burning coal he had taken from the altar with a pair of tongs. 7 He touched my lips with it and said, “See, this coal has touched your lips. Now your guilt is removed, and your sins are forgiven.”
8 Then I heard the Lord asking, “Whom should I send as a messenger to this people? Who will go for us?”
I said, “Here I am. Send me.”
- How does Isaiah respond to the vision of God and the “heavenly Kingdom”? ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- Why does he react in this way? ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- Is there any one aspect of the imagery Isaiah speaks about- that jumps out at you? ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- Have you ever had a deep encounter with God? What happened? If not, then how do you think you might react if you were to have a deep encounter with God? ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- What do you think is the appropriate behaviour (protocol) to use when in God’s presence? ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- Why did Isaiah respond with “Here I am. Send me.”? ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
NT Reading: Romans 8:1-17
Life in the Spirit
1 So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus. 2 And because you belong to him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death. 3 The law of Moses was unable to save us because of the weakness of our sinful nature. So God did what the law could not do. He sent his own Son in a body like the bodies we sinners have. And in that body God declared an end to sin’s control over us by giving his Son as a sacrifice for our sins. 4 He did this so that the just requirement of the law would be fully satisfied for us, who no longer follow our sinful nature but instead follow the Spirit.
5 Those who are dominated by the sinful nature think about sinful things, but those who are controlled by the Holy Spirit think about things that please the Spirit. 6 So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace. 7 For the sinful nature is always hostile to God. It never did obey God’s laws, and it never will. 8 That’s why those who are still under the control of their sinful nature can never please God.
9 But you are not controlled by your sinful nature. You are controlled by the Spirit if you have the Spirit of God living in you. (And remember that those who do not have the Spirit of Christ living in them do not belong to him at all.) 10 And Christ lives within you, so even though your body will die because of sin, the Spirit gives you life because you have been made right with God. 11 The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you. And just as God raised Christ Jesus from the dead, he will give life to your mortal bodies by this same Spirit living within you.
12 Therefore, dear brothers and sisters, you have no obligation to do what your sinful nature urges you to do. 13 For if you live by its dictates, you will die. But if through the power of the Spirit you put to death the deeds of your sinful nature, you will live. 14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God.
15 So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, “Abba, Father.” 16 For his Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God’s children. 17 And since we are his children, we are his heirs. In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God’s glory. But if we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering.
- The Apostle Paul presents a very different picture to us about “the presence of God” compared to that of Isaiah. According to Paul where is God’s presence to be found? ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- How do you feel thinking about God’s presence in this way? ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
- Think carefully about the different images of God given this week – Isaiah shows God as all powerful, majestic and in authority (omnipotent); Paul shows God as intimately, lovingly, present within us (immanent). How can we keep both these images in place in our faith? ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
“Make the robe that is worn with the ephod from a single piece of blue cloth, 32 with an opening for Aaron’s head in the middle of it. Reinforce the opening with a woven collar so it will not tear. 33 Make pomegranates out of blue, purple, and scarlet yarn, and attach them to the hem of the robe, with gold bells between them. 34 The gold bells and pomegranates are to alternate all around the hem. 35 Aaron will wear this robe whenever he ministers before the Lord, and the bells will tinkle as he goes in and out of the Lord’s presence in the Holy Place. If he wears it, he will not die”.
15 The high and lofty one who lives in eternity,
the Holy One, says this:
“I live in the high and holy place
with those whose spirits are contrite and humble.
I restore the crushed spirit of the humble
and revive the courage of those with repentant hearts.
God bless you in the week ahead,
[i] Alan Brehm: http://thewakingdreamer.blogspot.com/2012/06/majestic-and-merciful-isa.html
[ii] New Living Translation (NLT) Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
iii Doug Bratt: https://cep.calvinseminary.edu/sermon-starters/trinity-sunday-b-2/?type=old_testament_lectionary
iv John Holbert: http://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=328