April 17, 2022 - Preparing for the Lord's DayApril 14, 2022 Preparing for the Lord's Day
Preparing for the Lord's Day
Kingdoms In Conflict
It is difficult to imagine a more hopeless situation than that of our Christian brothers and sisters in Ukraine today. Valery Zadorozhnyy is a pastor and a New Testament lecturer at the Evangelical Reformed seminary in Kyiv. In an article for Table Talk magazine, he wrote of the reality of life for Ukrainian pastors in the midst of war. He writes,
…we understand very well that we need a miracle because of the prevailing enemy. Russia still has a lot of resources and Putin still has a lot of soldiers to throw to their deaths. And he has nuclear weapons. Our hope is only in God, and we need a miracle to withstand the threat we face and to prevent our destruction.
Reports out of Ukraine speak of churches that have been riddled with gunfire and shrapnel. Churches that have been hit by artillery fire. And churches that have been destroyed. We are grateful that this Easter we can gather unincumbered by health restrictions, but we are also saddened by the reality that many of our Christian brothers and sisters must gather in fear amidst rubble and destruction if they are able to gather at all.
What is their hope in the midst of such hopelessness? He concludes his letter-writing with the hope that they have,
We believe we’ll come out as victors. We know that evil is defeated by the cross and the resurrection of our Lord. We know that whatever our enemies do to us, we will be resurrected because God has united us with Christ. Therefore, we celebrate the victory of our Lord.
In our passage for this Easter Sunday, we come to the question of hope in a hopeless world. An Israelite woman finds herself at the center of a story of a merciful birth, a mysterious death, and a miraculous salvation. And what we will see is that if we would have hope in a world filled with hopelessness we must place our full trust in the resurrection of Jesus Christ alone. To come prepared for our Resurrection Day sermon, take time this week to read and meditate upon 2 Kings 4:8-37, Job 1:21, Psalm 107:9, Luke 7:13-15, Hebrews 11:35, and this article written by Ukrainian pastor Valery Zadorozhnyy.
This Easter Sunday we will celebrate that sacrament of the Lord’s Supper during our worship service. As we receive the elements of bread and wine, we look in faith to the Lord Jesus Christ. For as we physically receive the signs of the Lord’s body and blood, spiritually we feed upon him and all his benefits to us. Our hymns for this week include “Jesus Christ is Risen Today,” “I Am the Bread of Life,” and “Crown Him With Many Crowns”
Text: 2 Kings 4:8-37
Title: Hope in a Hopeless World
- Hope in the God Who Mercifully Brings Satisfaction (vv. 8-17)
- Hope in the God Who Mysteriously Brings Sorrow (vv. 18-31)
- Hope in the God Who Miraculously Brings Salvation (vv. 32-37)