Call to Worship
Receive God’s gracious call to worship.
Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles! Laud Him, all you peoples! For His merciful kindness is great toward us, And the truth of the Lord endures forever. Praise the Lord! (Psalm 117:1–2)
Offer this praise to God:
Glorious Lord God; our faith is fully assured of Your being, and our heart rejoices in Your infinite love,
Blessed was the day when first we knew our God. We mourn and lament with deep penitence, that we should have lived so, long strangers to our best friend, to Him in whose hand our breath is, and whose are all our ways.
It is of Your grace that we were ever brought to know You. Had we been left to ourselves we should have wandered on, and have remained in darkness till this day; but blessed be Your name,
O You God of all grace, You have revealed Yourself to us, You have brought Your life to our death, and made us alive in You; You have brought Your light to our blindness, and made us to behold You; and now You are not only the greatest source of joy to our spirit, but You are all our joy — we have none apart from You.
Whatever of comfort we find in the creature, we know it is but fickle; and while it is there, it comes from You, for all these things are empty, and vain, and void without You. Whom have we in heaven but You, and there is none upon earth that we desire beside You!
And Lord, we bless You for ever teaching us the way of faith; for enabling us to cast our guilty souls upon the Divine propitiation, made in Christ Jesus; for peace, like a river, has streamed into our spirit ever since.
We bless You for the power to trust You with everything else, for time as well as for eternity. We are sure we never live except as we live by faith; that all else is but death, and the counterfeit of life.
Lord God, You have written death before our eyes on all the creature; You have made us see the vanity of the most substantial things on earth. Behold we walk as in a vain show, and we disquiet ourselves in vain. All things are but shadows; but You, You are the eternal all. Casting our anchor upon You we are steadfast, and fixed, and safe; but all things else are quicksands. We cannot, dare not, find comfort, nor make a hope of them.
You, Lord, are all our expectation, all our salvation, and all our delight; and … we would cry, “Only my soul waits upon God, for my expectation is from Him.”
Hear God’s perfect requirements.
Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honour giving preference to one another; not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. Be of the same mind toward one another. Do not set your mind on high things, but associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own opinion. Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. Therefore “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; If he is thirsty, give him a drink; For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. (Romans 12:9–21)
Confession of Sin
Confess and repent of sins before God.
Now this day, be pleased, in infinite mercy by Christ Jesus, to visit us. Give us first a sense of perfect pardon. May there be nothing between any child of Yours and Yourself, great Father, that could mar the perfection of communion.
May we know that You have forgiven us for Jesus Christ’s sake. And as for anything in us that would grieve Your Spirit, take it away at once, and then let Your Spirit bear witness with our spirit that we are the children of God.
Oh now give us the spirit of adoption. If indeed we be Yours, by Your Fatherly love to us, we do beseech You breathe into every child of Yours a sense of love, a sense of Your near presence.
And then Lord, will You deal with us according to Your wisdom and prudence. Take out of us every evil and false way: anything wherein we have deceived ourselves do remove. Anything which looks like growth in grace, which is mere puffing up … do take away; anything which we prize, which is but counterfeit,
do utterly destroy and oh, bring us of Your great love to know Christ in truth, that what we know we may know, and not think we know.
And oh that there might be a deep reality about our Christian experience, and knowledge; that the truth of God may be incarnate in the truth which lives in us.
Assurance of Pardon
Hear the promise of grace:
Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28–30)
Offer this praise to God:
Bless the Lord, all His works, In all places of His dominion. Bless the Lord, O my soul! (Psalm 103:22)
Testify what you believe of Christian truth:
Thus the Father is God,
the Son is God,
the Holy Spirit is God.
Yet there are not three gods;
there is but one God.
Thus the Father is Lord,
the Son is Lord,
the Holy Spirit is Lord.
Yet there are not three lords;
there is but one Lord.
Just as Christian truth compels us
to confess each person individually
as both God and Lord,
so catholic religion forbids us
to say that there are three gods or lords.
The Father was neither made nor created nor begotten from anyone.
The Son was neither made nor created;
he was begotten from the Father alone.
The Holy Spirit was neither made nor created nor begotten;
he proceeds from the Father and the Son.
Accordingly there is one Father, not three fathers;
there is one Son, not three sons;
there is one Holy Spirit, not three holy spirits.
Nothing in this trinity is before or after,
nothing is greater or smaller;
in their entirety the three persons
are coeternal and coequal with each other.
So in everything, as was said earlier,
we must worship their trinity in their unity
and their unity in their trinity.
Anyone then who desires to be saved should think thus about the trinity.
(Athanasian Creed – part 2)
Learn from Spurgeon’s catechism.
71. What are the outward means whereby the Holy Spirit communicates to us the benefits of redemption?
A. The outward and ordinary means whereby the Holy Spirit communicates to us the benefits of Christ’s redemption, are the Word, by which souls are begotten to spiritual life; Baptism, the Lord’s Supper, Prayer, and Meditation, by all which believers are further edified in their most holy faith (Act 2:41-42; Jam 1:18).
72. How is the Word made effectual to salvation?
A. The Spirit of God makes the reading, but especially the preaching of the Word, an effectual means of convicting and converting sinners, (Psa 19:7) and of building them up in holiness and comfort (1Th 1:6), through faith to salvation (Rom 1:16).
73. How is the Word to be read and heard that it may become effectual to salvation?
A. That the Word may become effectual to salvation, we must attend to it with diligence (Pro 8:34), preparation (1Pe 2:1-2), and prayer (Ps 119:18), receive it with faith (Hbr 4:2), and love (2Th 2:10), lay it up into our hearts (Psa 119:11), and practise it in our lives (Jam 1:25).
Prayer for Illumination
Ask for spiritual understanding before reading God’s Word:
Many of us need comfort; our heart is cast down within us. There are many of Your saints in whose soul deep calls unto deep at the noise of Your waterspouts.
Command Your loving kindness, and let Your song be with us at this moment. Up from the shades may we ascend into the eternal light.
Oh that the sun of Your love might shine full on our brows, till our faces shall be bright like the face of Moses?
Oh that we might have such fellowship with God this morning, that we might defy Satan, defy unbelief, defy the flesh, defy the world, with a holy joy which comes not of the creature, and which the creature cannot mar — a “joy unspeakable and full of glory,” a drink out of the eternal fountains which well up from the deep which lies under, in the immutable and everlasting love and decree of God.
Read Scripture with dependence and a desire to obey.
Day 28: Romans 8:18-30 (Future Glory and Hope)
Prayer of Intercession
Make your requests with thanksgiving, and pray this prayer.
Now we do, with all our hearts, pray You to gather in the rest of Your family who, as yet, are far off from You.
O mighty grace, seek out the prodigal! O mighty love, receive the prodigals when they come back! O mighty grace change their hearts and make them to love the great Father.
We do pray for all who are out of the way; for such … as remain unsaved. Lord, let them not die in their sins. Have mercy upon some that have had a godly training, but remain ungodly. Oh condemn them not, we pray You, with such a mass of guilt upon them; but save them yet. Lord, have great mercy upon such as are ignorant of Christ, and therefore sin, but know not what they do. Let them become trophies of Your wondrous love. Gather them in; oh, gather them in today.
Blessed be the Lord, the Holy Ghost, who has not suffered the word to fall to the ground, but who has added to the church daily of such as shall be saved. Lord, continue this great favour. Stir up our dear brethren and sisters to continual prayer for a blessing. May the fire on this altar never go out; but as we have enjoyed, these many years, an unexampled prosperity, oh that we might continue to enjoy it still, unworthy though we be. Still, Lord, help us in every holy word and work.
Give to the church more and more the spirit of evangelization, and may many young men in the church, that are now sitting still and quiet, be moved to preach even in the streets, the unsearchable riches of Christ. Lord, renew the zeal of the church towards the Sunday school. May there be more coming forward to give themselves to the training of the young for Christ. Oh say to many a Peter, “Feed My lambs.”
Revive the church of God in every place, we beseech You.
Let the kingdom of Jesus Christ spread in all countries. Let Your kingdom come, great God, and let it come speedily. It does not trouble us to think that Christ shall come; it is indeed our joy. Make no tarrying, oh our Lord! But meanwhile make us watchful, earnest, active; and may we be as good servants, whose loins are girt, and whose lamps are trimmed. May we wait for the Master till He comes. Now give a blessing this … we come back to that prayer of ours — a blessing to each one. Bless me, even me also, O my Father! ‘The prayer is offered in the name of Jesus Christ the Mediator.
Close with the blessing of God.
The Lord who made heaven and earth Bless you from Zion! (Psalm 134:3)