_Call to Worship
This is the day that the Lord has made:
let us rejoice and be glad in it.
Alleluia! The Lord is risen indeed!
Praise with music
Click here to hear the Saint Andrew the Great Choir singing Thine is the Glory.
Psalm 16: 1-3, 9-11
1 Protect me, O God, for in you I take refuge.
2 I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord;
I have no good apart from you.”
3 As for the holy ones in the land, they are the noble,
in whom is all my delight.
9 Therefore my heart is glad, and my soul rejoices;
my body also rests secure.
10 For you do not give me up to Sheol,
or let your faithful one see the Pit.
11 You show me the path of life.
In your presence there is fullness of joy;
in your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
Gospel Reading: Acts 1: 1-14
1 In the first book, Theophilus, I wrote about all that Jesus did and taught from the beginning 2 until the day when he was taken up to heaven, after giving instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen. 3 After his suffering he presented himself alive to them by many convincing proofs, appearing to them during forty days and speaking about the kingdom of God. 4 While staying with them, he ordered them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait there for the promise of the Father. “This,” he said, “is what you have heard from me; 5 for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
6 So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, is this the time when you will restore the kingdom to Israel?” 7 He replied, “It is not for you to know the times or periods that the Father has set by his own authority. 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” 9 When he had said this, as they were watching, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. 10 While he was going and they were gazing up toward heaven, suddenly two men in white robes stood by them. 11 They said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up toward heaven? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.”
12 Then they returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a sabbath day’s journey away. 13 When they had entered the city, they went to the room upstairs where they were staying, Peter, and John, and James, and Andrew, Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew, James son of Alphaeus, and Simon the Zealot, and Judas son of James. 14 All these were constantly devoting themselves to prayer, together with certain women, including Mary the mother of Jesus, as well as his brothers.
Music and Offering
During this time, or after our prayers, you may make an offering to John Knox by going to our homepage and scrolling to the bottom where you will see a link to online giving. When you give this way, consider giving a little extra to defray the cost of this service. If you prefer, you may mail you offerings to the church directly. Even though we are far apart, the church's expenses remain the same. We give out of pure gratitude for what God has done. Listen to the offertory music by clicking here: Ain’t No Grave
Prayers of the People*
We pray for the church, the world, and all those in need.
(A brief silence)
The first resurrection witnesses were inspired by what they experienced, even though they didn’t fully understand the direction their ministry would take. Give us their zeal for spreading the message of your merciful kingdom. God of Life, hear our prayer.
As a cloud obscured Jesus when he was being taken back to heaven, so we often feel confused by a lack of clarity in how to approach the issues of our day. Give us your guidance when the way forward seems uncertain. God of Life, hear our prayer.
In your presence there is healing, even for that which we didn’t know was making us unwell. Remove all the barriers which stand between ourselves, you and others, and make us one again. Grant healing to those we know need it, especially those who are being affected with the coronavirus— the patients, the families, the health care workers, and everyone else whose health and safety are in danger. God of Life, hear our prayer.
We thank you, O Lord, that you hear our prayers even before we speak them, or know what we want to say. Accept all these things for the sake of our risen Savior, Jesus Christ, amen.
And now with confidence as the children of God, let us pray as Jesus taught his disciples: Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors. Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, now and forever. Amen.
Benediction: The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you, and bring you peace. Amen.
Next week: Acts 3: 1-10 Peter Heals in Jerusalem
Thine is the Glory, by the Saint Andrew the Great Choir.
Ain’t No Grave, by Cageless Birds feat. Molly Skaggs.
Today’s prayers are from
—Book of Common Worship, Presbyterian Church (USA), Westminster John Knox Press, Louisville, Kentucky, 2018.
—Clergy Stuff Worship Resources, Bloomington, Minnesota, 2016-2019.
Rev. Becky Downs, Pastor