Week 31: June 25 - July 1, 2017

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Thursday, June 29th, 2017

  • 1 This Week's Theme
  • 2 Preparing Our Hearts
  • 3 Praising Our God
  • 4 Listening to His Voice
  • 5 Responding in Faith
  • 6 Departing to Serve
  • 7 For Your Weekly Journey
  • Awe-filled: Queen of Sheba

    2 Chronicles 9.1-12

    The queen of Sheba, possibly from the land of the Sabeans in southwest Arabia (Ezek. 23.42; Joel 3.8), heard of the fame of Solomon and came to Jerusalem to test him “with hard questions.” In her caravan of camels she brought an extraordinary cache of spices, gold, and precious stones. When she arrived, she expressed to him all that was on her mind, and Solomon answered all her questions. Solomon was able to uncover all the things that she questioned him about, and when she had seen his wisdom, the house that he had built, the food at his tables, the seating of his officials, his servants, their clothing and all that he offered to the Lord in the temple, she was overwhelmed, literally “breathless.”

    In her report to the king, she said that she had heard of his wisdom in her own lands, but that not even half of his great­ness had been told to her! She said, “Indeed, happy must be your wives and servants, who continually stand before you and hear your wisdom.” She finished her report to him in saying, “Blessed be the LORD your God, who has delighted in you and set you on his throne as king for the LORD your God! Because your God loved Israel and would establish them forever, he has made you king over them, that you may execute justice and righteousness” (2 Chron. 9.8). She then gave the king 120 talents of gold and a “very great quantity” of spices and precious stones, with the editorial comment “there were no spices such as those that the queen of Sheba gave to King Solomon” (v. 9). King Solomon gave to the queen of Sheba all that she desired, whatever she asked, and she returned to her own land with her servants.

    The queen of Sheba (“queen of the South” cf. Matt. 12.42) is commended in Scripture for her perception and humility at seeing the work and wonders of God in the wisdom of Solomon. Her humility, perceptiveness, and openness to the excellence of the Lord in Solomon’s life and court is affirmed by our Lord in Matthew: “The queen of the South will rise up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and behold, something greater than Solomon is here” (Matt. 12.42). Her ability to recognize God’s greatness in Solomon, and her discerning, awe-filled spirit, is acknowledged by Christ, and should be pursued by us.

  • Invocation: Our Prayer of Acclamation

    Father, grant unto us the discerning perception of the queen of Sheba, who was overwhelmed when she saw your blessing and abundance in Solomon, your servant. Make us humble, receptive, and clear about your work, wherever we behold it. In Christ’s name, amen.

    Call to Worship  

    Blessed are you, O God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. And blessed is your Kingdom, both now and forever, Amen.

  • 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. 

  • Chronological Reading for the Day

    Thursday: Isa. 58-62

    Lectionary Readings

    Psalm:Ps. 86.1-10, 16-17

    OT:Gen. 21.8-21

    Gospel: Matt. 10.24-39

    NT:Rom. 6.1b-11

    (Click here for all readings)

  • 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.

  • Benediction  
    Lord Jesus, you said that the queen of the South would rise up against the unperceptive generation who encountered your work and did not respond, for she came from the ends of the earth to behold Solomon’s wisdom, and yet you were greater than Solomon. Open our eyes to see you as you are, to have the eyes and heart of the queen, and so to recognize your hand and wonders, wherever we find them. In your name we pray, amen.

    Affirmation from the Psalms
    Long may he live; may gold of Sheba be given to him! May prayer be made for him continually, and blessings invoked for him all the day! [16] May there be abundance of grain in the land; on the tops of the mountains may it wave; may its fruit be like Lebanon; and may people blossom in the cities like the grass of the field! [17] May his name endure forever, his fame continue as long as the sun! May people be blessed in him, all nations call him blessed! [18] Blessed be the LORD, the God of Israel, who alone does wondrous things. [19] Blessed be his glorious name forever; may the whole earth be filled with his glory! Amen and Amen!

    ~ Psalm 72.15-19

    Pray without Ceasing - Flash Prayer for the Day
    Open my eyes to see all the wondrous things that you have done.

  • Let God Arise! Seasonal Focus

    Standing in Awe of God

    2 Chronicles 9.1-12

    Book Reading

    Cunningham and Hamilton, Why Not Women