December 5, 2021 · 10:30am
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Invited In

Call to Worship+
Psalm 103:1–13
+Please stand as you are able.
Nursery Information

Leader: Bless the Lord, O my soul,
All: and all that is within me,
bless his holy name!
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits,
who forgives all your iniquity,
who heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from the pit,
who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,
who satisfies you with good
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

The Lord works righteousness
and justice for all who are oppressed.
He made known his ways to Moses,
his acts to the people of Israel.
The Lord is merciful and gracious,
slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
He will not always chide,
nor will he keep his anger forever.
He does not deal with us according to our sins,
nor repay us according to our iniquities.
For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;
as far as the east is from the west,
so far does he remove our transgressions from us.
As a father shows compassion to his children,
so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him. (ESV)

Hymn No. 203+
Hark! the Herald Angels Sing
Sheet Music

Hark! the herald angels sing,
“Glory to the newborn King;
peace on earth, and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled!”
Joyful, all ye nations, rise,
join the triumph of the skies;
with th’angelic host proclaim,
“Christ is born in Bethlehem!”
Hark! the herald angels sing,
“Glory to the newborn King.”


Christ, by highest heav’n adored,
Christ, the everlasting Lord!
Late in time behold him come,
Offspring of the Virgin’s womb.
Veiled in flesh the Godhead see;
hail th’incarnate Deity,
pleased as man with men to dwell,
Jesus, our Emmanuel.
Hark! the herald angels sing,
“Glory to the newborn King.”


Hail, the heav’n-born Prince of Peace!
Hail the Sun of Righteousness!
Light and life to all he brings,
ris’n with healing in his wings.
Mild he lays his glory by,
born that man no more may die,
born to raise the sons of earth,
born to give them second birth.
Hark! the herald angels sing,
“Glory to the newborn King.”

Text: Charles Wesley (1739, 1753), alt.
Music: Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy (1840)
arr. William H. Cummings (1856)
Public Domain.


Invocation+

Coming Clean

Call to Confession
Matthew 16:13–18

Confession of Sin

Father, you promise a kingdom that will prevail, a gospel that will overpower the gates of hell. We confess that when we look around and see a world that is still broken, full of temptation, danger, despair, we struggle to believe your promises. Even when we believe, we are certain that no one else will. We think the world is too hardened, too bitter, too distracted, too frivolous. That God would become man, that a man would die for his enemies, that forgiveness could be free and yet cost everything—these things are too odd, too fantastic, too wonderful, too incredible to believe. Cynicism and skepticism stand at the gates of hell, and we are afraid to approach. Forgive us for our unbelief. Remind us of the power of the gospel, the gospel that broke our hard hearts, the gospel that freed us from ourselves, the gospel that opened our eyes and drew us to your Son. Thank you for Jesus, who died even for our persistent, stubborn unbelief. Breathe your Spirit on us, Father. Renew us and embolden us to move out in weakness, to show and tell Jesus to our dying world. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Made New

Assurance of Grace
1 Peter 1:22–25

Hymn No. 194
O Come, O Come, Emmanuel
Sheet Music

O come, O come, Emmanuel,
and ransom captive Israel,
that mourns in lonely exile here,
until the Son of God appear.
Rejoice! Rejoice!
Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.


O come, O come, thou Lord of might,
who to thy tribes, on Sinai’s height,
in ancient times didst give the law
in cloud and majesty and awe.
Rejoice! Rejoice!
Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.


O come, thou Rod of Jesse, free
thine own from Satan’s tyranny;
from depths of hell thy people save,
and give them vict’ry o’er the grave.
Rejoice! Rejoice!
Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.


O come, thou Dayspring from on high,
and cheer us by thy drawing nigh;
disperse the gloomy clouds of night,
and death’s dark shadows put to flight.
Rejoice! Rejoice!
Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.


O come, thou Key of David, come
and open wide our heav’nly home;
make safe the way that leads on high,
and close the path to misery.
Rejoice! Rejoice!
Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.

Text: Latin antiphons (12th cent.), Latin hymn (1710)
Tr. by John Mason Neale (1851), alt. 1961
Music: Plainsong (13th cent.), arr. Thomas Helmore (1856)
Public Domain.


Confession of Faith+
Apostles’ Creed

I believe in God the Father Almighty,
Maker of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ,
his only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
and born of the virgin Mary.
He suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended into hell.
The third day he rose again from the dead.
He ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand of God the Father Almighty.
From there he will come to judge the living 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.


Drawn Near

Scripture Reading
Numbers 21:4–9; Ezekiel 36:22–32

Prayer for the Church

Hymn No. 201+
O Little Town of Bethlehem
Sheet Music
Parents may escort children ages 0–4 to the nursery at this time.

O little town of Bethlehem,
how still we see thee lie;
above thy deep and dreamless sleep
the silent stars go by:
yet in thy dark streets shineth
the everlasting Light;
the hopes and fears of all the years
are met in thee tonight.

For Christ is born of Mary;
and gathered all above,
while mortals sleep, the angels keep
their watch of wond’ring love.
O morning stars, together
proclaim the holy birth!
And praises sing to God the King,
and peace to men on earth.

How silently, how silently,
the wondrous gift is giv’n!
So God imparts to human hearts
the blessings of his heav’n.
No ear may hear his coming,
but in this world of sin,
where meek souls will receive him still,
the dear Christ enters in.

O holy child of Bethlehem,
descend to us, we pray;
cast out our sin and enter in;
be born in us today.
We hear the Christmas angels
the great glad tidings tell;
O come to us, abide with us,
our Lord Emmanuel.

Text: Phillips Brooks (1868) · Music: Lewis H. Redner (1868)
Public Domain.


Scripture Reading
John 2:23–3:15

Sermon
You Must Be Born From Above

  • • The Inadequacy of Natural Reason
  • • The Necessity of Spiritual Birth
  • • The Sufficiency of the Incarnate Savior


  • Hymn+
    We Will Feast in the House of Zion

    We will feast in the house of Zion;
    we will sing with our hearts restored;
    “He has done great things,”
    we will say together;
    we will feast and weep no more.


    We will not be burned by the fire;
    He is the Lord our God;
    we are not consumed by the flood—
    upheld, protected, gathered up.
    We will feast in the house of Zion;
    we will sing with our hearts restored;
    “He has done great things,”
    we will say together;
    we will feast and weep no more.


    In the dark of night before the dawn,
    my soul, be not afraid,
    for the promised morning—oh, how long?
    O God of Jacob, be my strength.
    We will feast in the house of Zion;
    we will sing with our hearts restored;
    “He has done great things,”
    we will say together;
    we will feast and weep no more.


    Every vow, we’ve broken and betrayed.
    You are the faithful one,
    and, from the garden to the grave,
    bind us together; bring shalom.
    We will feast in the house of Zion;
    we will sing with our hearts restored;
    “He has done great things,”
    we will say together;
    we will feast and weep no more.


    Text and Music: Sandra McCracken and Joshua Moore
    Copyright © 2015 Drink Your Tea (ASCAP)/Joshmooreownsthis Music (ASCAP).
    Used by permission. All rights reserved.


    Communion

    What is the Lord’s Supper?
    The Lord’s Supper is a sacrament, in which, by giving and receiving bread and wine, according to Christ’s appointment, His death is showed forth; and the worthy receivers are, not after a physical and bodily manner, but by faith, made partakers of His body and blood, with all His benefits, to their spiritual nourishment, and growth in grace.

    What is required for the worthy receiving of the Lord’s Supper?
    It is required of those who would worthily partake of the Lord’s Supper, that they examine themselves about their knowledge to discern the Lord’s body, about their faith to feed upon him, about their repentance, love, and new obedience; so they do not, by coming in an unworthy manner, eat and drink judgment to themselves.

    from The Westminster Shorter Catechism


    Offering
    Give Online

    Doxology+
    Sheet Music

    Praise God from whom all blessings flow;
    Praise him, all creatures here below;
    Praise him above, ye heav’nly host:
    Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Amen.

    Text: Thomas Ken (1709)
    Music: Louis Bourgeois’ Genevan Psalter (1551)
    Trinity Hymnal No. 731 · Public Domain.



    Sent Out

    Commission & Benediction+

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    Nursery: Children of all ages are welcome throughout the service. For children ages 0–4, a staffed nursery in the hallway west of the sanctuary will be available beginning before the sermon until the end of the service.

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    All Souls is a part of the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA), a Christian, Reformed denomination with historic and theological roots in the Protestant Reformation.


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