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GATHERING BEFORE GOD
July 5, 2015
Sixth Sunday After Pentecost

PRELUDE  

GREETING AND PREPARATION

Leader: The Lord be with you.
People: And also with you.

CALL TO WORSHIP

Leader: It is good to praise the Lord and make music to your name, O Most High,
People: proclaiming your love in the morning and your faithfulness at night.

Leader: Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord; let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.
People: Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song.

— Psalm 92:1-2 and 95:1-2, NIV 

PRAYER OF INVOCATION


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PRAISE TO THE LORD (PRAISE HIM)

Praise to the Lord, The Almighty, the King of creation!
O my soul, praise Him, For He is thy health and salvation!
All ye who hear, Now to His temple draw near;
Praise Him in glad adoration.

CHORUS
Praise Him, Praise Him, Praise Him
Praise Him, Praise Him, Praise Him

Praise to the Lord, Who doth prosper thy work and defend thee;
Surely His goodness and mercy here daily attend thee.
Ponder anew what the Almighty can do,
If with His love He befriend thee.  

CHORUS
   
Praise to the Lord, O let all that is in me adore Him!
All that hath life and breath, come now with praises before Him.
Let the Amen sound from His people again,
Gladly for aye we adore Him.

CHORUS

Praise to the Lord, The Almighty, the King of creation!
O my soul, praise Him, For He is thy health and salvation!
All ye who hear, Now to His temple draw near;
Praise Him in glad adoration.

CHORUS X 2


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ALL CREATURES OF OUR GOD & KING

All creatures of our God and King
Lift up your voice and with us sing
O praise Him, Alleluia!
Thou burning sun with golden beam
thou silver moon with softer gleam
O praise Him, O praise Him
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

Thou rushing wind that art so strong
ye clouds that sail in Heav’n along
O praise Him, Alleluia!
Thou rising moon, in praise rejoice
ye lights of evening, find a voice
O praise Him, O praise Him
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

Let all things their Creator bless
and worship Him in humbleness
O praise Him, Alleluia!
Praise, praise the Father, praise the Son
and praise the Spirit, three in One
O praise Him, O praise Him
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!


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HOW DEEP THE FATHER’S LOVE FOR US

How deep the Father’s love for us
How vast beyond all measure
That He should give His only Son
And make a wretch His treasure.
How great the pain of searing loss,
The Father turns His face away.
As wounds which mar the Chosen One
Bring many sons to glory.

Behold the Man upon the cross
My sin upon His shoulders
Ashamed I hear my mocking voice
Call out among the scoffers.
It was my sin that held Him there
Until it was accomplished.
His dying breath has brought me life
I know that it is finished.

I will not boast in anything
No gifts, no power, no wisdom.
But I will boast in Jesus Christ,
His death and resurrection.
Why should I gain from His reward?
I cannot give an answer.
But this I know with all my heart,
His wounds have paid my ransom.


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CALL TO CONFESSION 

Leader: We know that nothing is able to separate us from the love of God in Jesus Christ. Let us in freedom confess the wrong we have done.

— Based on Romans 8:39

PRAYER OF CONFESSION

People: O Lord our God, you have searched us and known us.

You know not only what we say, but also what we think. You know how quickly our thoughts rise to praise ourselves because we are well-off or good-looking or healthy or smart, boasting of your gifts as if they were our accomplishments. You know how slowly our thoughts sink to accuse ourselves even when we have turned our backs on you, fascinating ourselves with other gods whose voice we follow while ignoring your own.

O God, forgive, correct, and heal us through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

SILENT CONFESSION 

WORDS OF PARDON

Leader: Come now, let us argue it out, says the Lord: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be like snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool. 

— Isaiah 1:18, NRSV

SONG OF RESPONSE - KYRIE ELEISON

Lord have mercy, Christ have mercy, Lord have mercy on us. 
Lord have mercy, Christ have mercy, Lord have mercy on us. 
REPEAT

PASSING THE PEACE


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THE WORD OF GOD

SCRIPTURE READING

Psalm 146

Praise the Lord!
Praise the Lord, O my soul! 2I will praise the Lord as long as I live; I will sing praises to my God all my life long. 3Do not put your trust in princes, in mortals, in whom there is no help. 4When their breath departs, they return to the earth; on that very day their plans perish.

5Happy are those whose help is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the Lord their God, 6who made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them; who keeps faith forever; 7who executes justice for the oppressed; who gives food to the hungry.

The Lord sets the prisoners free; 8the Lord opens the eyes of the blind. The Lord lifts up those who are bowed down; the Lord loves the righteous. 9The Lord watches over the strangers; he upholds the orphan and the widow, but the way of the wicked he brings to ruin.

10The Lord will reign forever, your God, O Zion, for all generations. Praise the Lord!

Minister: This is the word of the Lord.
People: Thanks be to God!

PRAYER FOR ILLUMINATION
Sermon Series: Reversed Thunder: Learning to Pray from the Psalms
Sermon Title: Praise
Speaker: Vito Baldini


REFLECTIONS

Praises as a title is not statically accurate but it is accurate all the same. It is accurate because it accurately describers the end, the finished product. All prayer, pursued fare enough, becomes praise. Any prayer, no matter how desperate its origin, no matter how angry and fearful the experiences it traverses, ends up in praise. It does not always get there quickly or easily - the trip can take a lifetime - but the end is praise. “Praises”, in fact, is the only accurate title for our prayer book, for it is the goal that shapes the journey: “The end is where we start from. 

- Eugene H. Peterson “Answering God The Psalm As Tools for Prayer”


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NICENE CREED

Minister: Let us say what we believe.

People: We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen. 

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one Being with the Father. Through him all things were made. For us and for our salvation he came down from
 heaven, was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary and became truly human. 

For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried. On the third day he rose again in accordance with the Scriptures; he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end. 

We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father [and the Son], who with the Father and the Son is worshiped and glorified, who has spoken through the prophets. We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church. We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins. We look for the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come. Amen. 


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 THE LORD’S TABLE

THE GREAT THANKSGIVING  

The Lord be with you. 
And also with you.

Lift up your hearts now!  
We lift them to the Lord. 

Let us give thanks to the Lord our saving God.
It is right and good, always and everywhere.
To give thanks, to the Lord. 

Minister: With joy we praise you, gracious God, for you have created heaven and earth, made us in your image, and kept covenant with us—even when we fell into sin. We give you thanks for Jesus Christ, our Lord, who by his glorious resurrection overcame the power of sin and gave us new life. Therefore we join our voices with all the saints and angels and the whole creation to proclaim the glory of your name, saying:

Holy, holy, holy, God of power and might.
The whole earth is full of Your glory,
hosanna in the highest! 
Holy, holy, holy, God of power and might.
The whole earth is full of Your glory,
hosanna in the highest! 

Minister: By your power you raised Jesus from death to life. Through his victory over the grave we are set free from the bonds of sin and the fear of death to share the glorious freedom of the children of God. In his rising to life you promise eternal life to all who believe in him. We praise you that as we break bread in faith, we shall know the risen Christ among us.


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Your death, O Christ, we proclaim.
Your rising celebrate!
Your coming Lord we await, to make all things new.
(REPEAT)

Minister: Gracious God, pour out your Holy Spirit upon us, that the bread we break and the cup we bless may be the communion of the body and blood of Christ. By your Spirit make us one with Christ, that we may be one with all who share this feast, united in ministry in every place. As this bread is Christ’s body for us, send us out to be the body of Christ in the world.

Praise to the Father,
praise to the Son, 
praise to the Spirit, 
Our God the Three in One.  

WORDS OF INSTITUTION

Minister: Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us.         
People: Therefore, let us keep the feast. 

HOLY COMMUNION        

Minister: The gifts of God for the people of God.     

Gluten-free communion wafers are available at the welcome table in the front lobby of the church. Please pick one up prior to coming forward to take communion. 

Holy Communion, also called the Lord’s Supper or the Eucharist, is the family meal of Christians. We invite all committed followers of Jesus Christ to partake of this sacrament: those who are baptized members of a congregation that proclaims the Gospel, who are at peace with God and their neighbor, and who seek strength to live more faithfully for Christ.


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PRAYERS FOR REFLECTION

If you are not a Christian, or if you are not prepared to share in this meal, we encourage you to spend this time in prayer. We hope that this time is helpful to you as you consider your relationship with Jesus Christ and with his people, the church. If you are unable to receive Communion, we invite you to meditate on one of the following prayers: 

PRAYER FOR THOSE SEARCHING FOR TRUTH: Lord Jesus, you claim to be the way, the truth, and the life. Grant that I might be undaunted by the cost of following you as I consider the reasons for doing so. If what you claim is true, please guide me, teach me, and open to me the reality of who you are. Give me an understanding of you that is coherent, convincing, and that leads to the life that you promise. Amen.

PRAYER OF BELIEF: Lord Jesus, I admit that I am weaker and more sinful than I ever before believed, but through you I am more loved and accepted than I ever dared hope. I thank you for paying my debt, bearing my punishment on the cross, and offering forgiveness and new life. Knowing that you have been raised from the dead, I turn from my sins and receive you as Savior and Lord. Amen.

PRAYER OF COMMITMENT: Lord Jesus, you have called us to follow you in baptism and in a life of committed discipleship in your church. Grant that I may take the necessary steps to be one with your people, and live in the fullness of your Spirit. Amen.


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JUST AS I AM

Just as I am without one plea
But that Thy blood was shed for me
And that Thou bidd'st me come to Thee
Oh Lamb of God, I come. I come.

Just as I am, and waiting not
to rid my soul of one dark blot,
to Thee, whose blood can cleanse each spot,
Oh Lamb of God, I come. I come.

Just as I am, though tossed about
with many a conflict many a doubt,
fightings and fears within, without,
Oh Lamb of God, I come. I come.

Just as I am, poor, wretched, blind;
sight, riches, healing of the mind,
yeah, all I need, in Thee to find,
Oh Lamb of God, I come. I come.

Just as I am, Thou wilt receive,
wilt welcome pardon, cleanse relieve;
because Thy promise I believe,
Oh Lamb of God, I come. I come.

Just as I am, Thy love unknown
has broken ev'ry barrier down;
now, to be Thine, yea, thine alone,
Oh Lamb of God, I come. I come.


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COMMUNION PRAYER
    
People: Lord, you have put gladness in our hearts; you have satisfied our hunger with good things. In giving all, you have not withheld from us your own dear Son. How can we withhold anything from you, our Lord and our God? Renew us day by day with the gift of your Spirit, that we may give ourselves completely to your service and walk with joy in the footsteps of Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

THE LORD’S PRAYER

Minister: Let us pray as our Lord Jesus has taught us:     
People: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us. Save us from the time of trial, and deliver us from evil. For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours, now and forever. Amen.


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SENDING INTO GOD’S WORLD

OFFERING 

DOXOLOGY

Praise God, from Whom all blessings flow
Praise Him, All creatures here be - low
Praise Him Above, Ye Heavenly Host
Praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost

Amen, Amen,
Amen, Amen.


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BENEDICTION

Minister: The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face to shine upon you, and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace.  

— Numbers 6:24-26, NIV

People: Amen.

DISMISSAL

Minister: Let us go forth in the name of Christ.
People: Thanks be to God!


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NEW HERE?
Welcome, and thanks for joining us! We'd love for you to fill out one of our welcome cards (available at the welcome tables and online), so that we can help you better connect at Liberti.

EMMANUEL HOMELESS MINISTRY
Twice a month, we partner with the congregation of First Baptist Church to serve a meal to our homeless neighbors, and to provide a safe and comfortable space for them here in our building. This summer and fall, Emmanuel will take place at St. Mark’s Church (1625 Locust St.) while our kitchen and dining hall are under construction. This transition means that we need volunteers now more than ever! This is a great way to serve one of our city’s deepest needs, and is also a good way to meet new people and get connected at Liberti. If you are interested in learning more about Emmanuel, please email emmanuelministryliberti@gmail.com.

PRAYER REQUESTS
This week, please pray alongside us for…
 
Our Church — For our continued ministry throughout the summer, that many people would be able to grow closer to Christ through our community.
Our City — For the men and women who work hard to develop and sustain our infrastructure.
Our World — For our brothers and sisters in Christ in Charleston, as they continue to mourn, that they would know peace and unity in their suffering.

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