Liturgy for Home Worship: Palm Sunday (4/5/2020)
During the coronavirus outbreak, our church has decided to forego its usual corporate gathering and to worship as individuals, families, and in small groups. This liturgy is designed to help us maintain unity in our worship—even while we’re separated. To learn more about why we’re worshipping in this way, what a liturgy is, and how it works, click here. The liturgy is available for you to look at any time, but the sermon won’t be available until Sunday, 4/5/20 at 10 AM CST.
The King Approaches
Heavenly Father, we gather now with our brothers and sisters, not in body but in spirit. We thank you that our King has triumphantly entered into this world and taken up His position of honor and authority. Although we live now in a time of suffering and confusion, we trust that He has not abdicated His throne. May our worship this morning bring Him glory, and may your presence bring us everything we need to live as children of light in a world of darkness. Amen.
Call to Worship: Psalm 95:1–7 (ESV)
95 Oh come, let us sing to the Lord;
let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation!
2 Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving;
let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!
3 For the Lord is a great God,
and a great King above all gods.
4 In his hand are the depths of the earth;
the heights of the mountains are his also.
5 The sea is his, for he made it,
and his hands formed the dry land.
6 Oh come, let us worship and bow down;
let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!
7 For he is our God,
and we are the people of his pasture,
and the sheep of his hand.
Reading: Huldrych Zwingli, “Pestlied” or Plague Song (“Hilf, Herr Gott, hilf in dieser Not”)
Huldrych Zwingli was a Protestant Reformer and pastor in Zurich. When the bubonic plague struck his city, Zwingli faithfully ministered to the sick and dying among his flock. Eventually, he contracted the disease himself. Though he nearly died, he recovered and, among other writings, penned the following poem (translated and adapted).
Help me, O Lord,
My strength and rock;
Lo, at the door
I hear death’s knock.
Uplift shine arm,
Once pierced for me,
That conquered death.
And set me free.
Yet, if thy voice,
In life’s midday.
Recalls my soul,
Then I obey.
In faith and hope
Earth I resign.
Secure of heaven.
For I am Thine.
My pains increase;
Haste to console;
For fear and woe
Seize body and soul.
Death is at hand.
My senses fail.
My tongue is dumb;
Now, Christ, prevail.
Lo! Satan strains
To snatch his prey;
I feel his grasp;
Must I give way?
He harms me not,
I fear no loss,
For here I lie
Beneath thy cross.
My God! My Lord!
Healed by the hand.
Upon the earth
Once more I stand.
Let sin no more
Rule over me;
My mouth shall sing
Alone to thee.
Though now delayed,
My hour will come.
In deeper gloom.
But, let it come;
With joy I’ll rise,
And bear my yoke
Straight to the skies.
Source: “Plague Lit”
Song: “A Mighty Fortress is Our God”
Old Testament Reading: 1 Kings 1:28–40 (ESV)
28 Then King David answered, “Call Bathsheba to me.” So she came into the king’s presence and stood before the king. 29 And the king swore, saying, “As the Lord lives, who has redeemed my soul out of every adversity, 30 as I swore to you by the Lord, the God of Israel, saying, ‘Solomon your son shall reign after me, and he shall sit on my throne in my place,’ even so will I do this day.” 31 Then Bathsheba bowed with her face to the ground and paid homage to the king and said, “May my lord King David live forever!”
32 King David said, “Call to me Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada.” So they came before the king. 33 And the king said to them, “Take with you the servants of your lord and have Solomon my son ride on my own mule, and bring him down to Gihon. 34 And let Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet there anoint him king over Israel. Then blow the trumpet and say, ‘Long live King Solomon!’ 35 You shall then come up after him, and he shall come and sit on my throne, for he shall be king in my place. And I have appointed him to be ruler over Israel and over Judah.” 36 And Benaiah the son of Jehoiada answered the king, “Amen! May the Lord, the God of my lord the king, say so. 37 As the Lord has been with my lord the king, even so may he be with Solomon, and make his throne greater than the throne of my lord King David.”
38 So Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and the Cherethites and the Pelethites went down and had Solomon ride on King David’s mule and brought him to Gihon. 39 There Zadok the priest took the horn of oil from the tent and anointed Solomon. Then they blew the trumpet, and all the people said, “Long live King Solomon!” 40 And all the people went up after him, playing on pipes, and rejoicing with great joy, so that the earth was split by their noise.
During this time, it’s more important than ever that we continue to embody our trust in the Lord’s provision through faithful, sacrificial giving. Please visit http://evcl.org/give/ and make your offering as a family as an intentional act of faith. Although online giving is preferred during this time, you may also write and mail your checks to:
Village Church of Lincolnshire
201 Riverwoods Rd
Lake Forest, IL 60045
Read: Mark 12:41–44 (ESV)
41 And he sat down opposite the treasury and watched the people putting money into the offering box. Many rich people put in large sums. 42 And a poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, which make a penny. 43 And he called his disciples to him and said to them, “Truly, I say to you, this poor widow has put in more than all those who are contributing to the offering box. 44 For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty has put in everything she had, all she had to live on.”
Song: “It Is Well With My Soul”
You don’t have to sing along. Just listen and meditate on the peace God invites us to enjoy even in a season like this one.
Encourage your family or group to say each “Lord, hear our prayer” with you. You’ll find this standard form of liturgical response in sources like the Book of Common Prayer—a staple of Protestant worship since the Reformation.
Father, we thank you for the kindness you have shown us in Christ. We come before your throne with boldness, knowing that you have welcomed us into your presence for the sake of your beloved Son. We ask now that you would hear us as we lift our voices to you.
- For those across the world who have been afflicted by this virus, Lord, hear our prayer.
- For the governments you have appointed to oversee these things, Lord, hear our prayer.
- For the healthcare workers who are burdened with the care of the sick, Lord, hear our prayer.
- For the churches you’ve placed on the front lines of this pandemic, Lord, hear our prayer.
- For the missionaries across the globe who are seeking to minister in the midst of this, Lord, hear our prayer.
- For our own church in this time of disruption, Lord, hear our prayer.
- For the leaders you’ve called to shepherd this flock, Lord, hear our prayer.
- For the most vulnerable among us, Lord, hear our prayer.
- For the neighbors around us, Lord, hear our prayer.
- For the slowing of the virus’ spread, Lord, hear our prayer.
- For our ability to testify to the peace we know in You, Lord, hear our prayer.
- For eyes to see and hands to serve our brothers, sisters, and neighbors, Lord, hear our prayer.
- For the resources to show generosity to our friends and neighbors, Lord, hear our prayer.
- For the students and families at Trinity who are suffering from economic hardship, Lord, hear our prayer.
- For our dear sisters Connie and Jan, Lord, hear our prayer.
- For the words we are about to hear and the work of your Spirit upon our hearts and minds, Lord, hear our prayer.
If you’re gathered in a group, this is a great time to pray together for specific needs and concerns that touch the folks in the room. You can either spend a few minutes sharing requests and then praying, or you can launch straight into a few minutes of group prayer.
Dialogue Sermon: “The King Approaches”
Pastors Kenny Silva and Casey Dwyer
Not available until 4/5/2020 at 10 AM CST.
Link: “The King Approaches”
“Almighty God, whose most dear Son went not up to joy but first he suffered pain,
and entered not into glory before he was crucified:
Mercifully grant that we, walking in the way of the cross,
may find it none other than the way of life and peace;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.”
From the Book of Common Prayer (2007)
Benediction: Hebrews 13:20–21 (ESV)
20 Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, 21 equip you with everything good that you may do his will, working in us that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.
If you did not get a chance to do so earlier in the service, we encourage you to visit http://evcl.org/give to make your weekly offering. To learn more about why giving is so important to our faith during this season, see this letter from Pastor Kenny. For detailed instructions on how to give online, click here.