This Week’s Theme
Death in Adam, Life in Jesus
One of the most important truths in the New Testament is the relationship between Jesus of Nazareth and Adam. Two chapters in the New Testament focus on their relationship: Romans 5 and 1 Corinthians 15. In the work of Jesus Christ, who is referred to as the Last Adam, his life, obedience, and work results in reconciliation with God and justification and righteousness for all who cling to him in faith. The actions of the first human being, Adam, resulted in sin, alienation, and ultimately death. Paul proclaims that sin came into the world through the first Adam, and death through sin, spreading to all humankind because all sinned (vv. 12-13). Death ruled over humankind from Adam to Moses, even those who didn’t transgress in the same way Adam did; Paul says that Adam “was a type of the one who was to come” (v. 14).
The free gift differs however from the transgression. Many died through one man’s trespass; death reigned and condemnation was given because of Adam’s sin. “And the free gift is not like the result of that one man’s sin. For the judgment following one trespass brought condemnation, but the free gift following many trespasses brought justification” (v. 16). As Adam’s trespass lead to the condemnation of all of humankind, so the one act of righteousness by Jesus Christ leads to justification and life for all humankind (v.18). Where does the Mosaic Law fit in? It was added so that the trespass might increase (vv. 15-19). Where sin was seen as truly sinful, “grace abounded all the more” (v. 19).
As sin has reigned through Adam in death, so now grace reigns through righteousness, leading to eternal life in Christ Jesus, our Lord (v. 20-21). The Gospel declares Jesus the Victor, the one whose righteousness cancelled Adam’s sin-debt caused by disobedience, and opens the door for grace to rule for all peoples. Now, through Christ, all can have grace reign through righteousness, leading to eternal life.
Preparing Our Hearts
Invocation: Our Prayer of Acclamation
Thank you Father, for the amazing representation that Jesus has made for humankind before you. Where Adam failed, leading to sin, alienation, and death, Jesus your Son was victorious, leading to righteousness, reconciliation, and life. We identify with him. Reproduce his life in us, for your glory’s sake, amen.
Call to Worship
Blessed are you, O God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. And blessed is your Kingdom, both now and forever, Amen.
Praising Our God
Te Deum Laudamus
You are God: we praise you; you are the Lord; we acclaim you; you are the eternal Father: All creation worships you. To you all angels, all the powers of heaven, Cherubim and Seraphim, sing in endless praise: Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might, heaven and earth are full of your glory.
The glorious company of apostles praise you. The noble fellowship of prophets praise you. The white-robed army of martyrs praise you. Throughout the world the holy Church acclaims you; Father, of majesty unbounded, your true and only Son, worthy of all worship, and the Holy Spirit, advocate and guide.
You, Christ, are the king of glory, the eternal Son of the Father. When you became man to set us free you did not shun the Virgin’s womb. You overcame the sting of death and opened the kingdom of heaven to all believers. You are seated at God’s right hand in glory. We believe that you will come and be our judge. Come then, Lord, and help your people, bought with the price of your own blood, and bring us with your saints to glory everlasting.
Praise and Thanksgiving (songs and prayers)
Glory be to the Father,
And to the Son and to the Holy Spirit:
As it was in the beginning,
Is now, and ever shall be,
World without end. Amen, amen.
Listening to His Voice
Chronological Reading for the Day
Thursday: 1 Thess. 1-5
Lectionary Readings for the Day
Reflection: Silence and/or Journaling
Responding in Faith
The Apostles’ Creed
I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth; and in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried; he descended into hell; the third day he arose again from the dead; he ascended into heaven and sits on the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic* church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.
*In the Apostles’ and Nicene Creeds, the term catholic refers to the Church’s universality, through all ages and times, of all languages and peoples. It refers to no particular tradition or denominational expression (e.g., as in Roman Catholic).
Prayers of Confession
Let us now confess our sins to God and receive mercy and grace to help in our time of need.
Assurance of Pardon
Having faithfully confessed and renounced your sin, Christ also has been faithful to forgive your sins and to purify you from all unrighteousness. It is certain, that there is One who has spoken to the Father in your defense, Jesus Christ, the Righteous One who is the atoning sacrifice for our sins and for the sins of the whole world. His grace and peace are with you now. Amen.
Petitions and Supplications, Ending with The Lord’s Prayer
Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.
~ Matthew 6.9-13 (KJV)
Doxology (and/or closing song)
Praise God from whom all blessings flow;
Praise Him all creatures here below;
Praise Him above ye heavenly host;
Praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost. Amen.
Departing to Serve
Lord Jesus, through Adam’s trespass all people were condemned, but through your righteousness, all can be justified and be granted the gift of life. Our desire is to be one with you by faith, to be “in Christ,” and to never lose sight of what you have done for us all. We cling to you in faith, counting on your life and righteousness to strengthen us as we go. You are Lord. In your name we pray, amen.
Affirmation for the Day
God made him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, that we might in him become the righteousness of God (cf. 2 Cor. 5.21).
Pray without Ceasing – Flash Prayer for the Day
For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous (Rom. 5.19).
Let God Arise! Seasonal Focus
Contend for the Faith Once Delivered to the Saints