Wednesday, April 8, 2020: Wednesday of Holy Week

This Week’s Theme
The Lord God Helps Me
Isaiah 50.4-9a

As our Lord journeyed to the Cross, the prophetic testimony speaks of his utter humility and openness to his Father. According to the prophet Isaiah, the Lord GOD gave to our Lord Jesus the tongue of those who are taught, that he might know how to sustain with a word the one who is weary. Morning by morning the Father awakened our Lord, giving him the ear to hear as those who are taught. The Lord GOD opened his ear, and our Lord was neither rebellious, nor did he turn backward. Our Lord would give his back to those who struck it, and his cheeks to those who pulled out his beard, but in all the disgrace and spitting, our Lord would neither hide nor shrink back. He resolved to obey his Father, whatever the cost, and was convinced he would not be put to shame.

In a final affirmation of truth and courage, the Messiah summarizes his source of strength. “Behold, the Lord God helps me; who will declare me guilty? Behold, all of them will wear out like a garment; the moth will eat them up.” Yes, in all things, even in the midst of unjust betrayal, cynical rejection, and brutal chastisement, the Messiah affirms that God will remain his hope and blessing. He will trust in the Lord God to be his help.

In all things during our Lord’s passion before his death, the Father comforted and ministered to his Son. Jesus was never alone during his sufferings during his passion. In the same way, the Lord God will be our help as we move forward in obedience to God’s will, wherever it may lead.

Preparing Our Hearts
Invocation: Our Prayer of Acclamation

God of our Lord Jesus Christ, who proved to be the help of our Savior during all of his passion and trials, have mercy on us. Enable us to remember the sufferings of our Savior, how he relied on you and never faltered, how he clung to your Word, and opened his ear and heart to you. You never forsook him, and he clung to you, till the very end. Grant us his strength to persevere, to stand, and to trust. Form his character in us, for Jesus’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)

Gloria Patri

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

Wednesday: Pss. 35-38

Chronological Holy Week Readings

Wednesday of Holy Week: Matt. 26.1-16; Mark 14.1-2, 10-11; Luke 22.1-6

Lectionary Readings

Psalm: Ps. 70

OT: Isa. 50.4-9a

Gospel: John 13.21-32

NT: Heb. 12.1-3

(Click here for all readings)

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, who ever clung tightly to the word and truth of the Father, thank you so much for your amazing strength, for your ability to stand for his righteousness, and for the love that caused you to pay the ultimate price for all of us. We have turned our backs on you countless times, and yet, still, you remain faithful to us, as you did this week so many years ago. Make us like you; forgive us, heal us, cleanse us, and renew us, so that your name may be glorified through us. For your sake, we pray, amen.

Affirmation for the Day
I will persevere for it is the LORD God who helps me during my times of trial.

Pray without Ceasing – Flash Prayer for the Day
I will lift up my eyes to the LORD, for my help comes from the LORD who made heaven and earth. He is my Source and my Supply.

For Your Weekly Journey

Let God Arise! Seasonal Focus
If I Be Lifted Up, John 12.20-36

Book Reading
Barrett, None Greater

Special Church Year Services
Maundy Thursday: Thursday, April 9, 2020
Good Friday: Friday, April 10, 2020
Holy Saturday: Saturday, April 11, 2020