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Preparing For The Lord's Day


Preparing for the Lord's Day

Jesus is Better

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder, and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted” (Hebrews 12:1-3).

As we come to Hebrews 12:1-3 this Sunday, we come to a familiar and profound passage of Scripture.  Over the years, I confess that I have considered these verses with two distinct responses. Each response has often warmth to my heart and a smile to my face.    

First, I have often imagined that the great cloud of witnesses of Hebrews 12:1  includes my parents and grandparents as the ones who have gone before me. I remember their commitment to family, church, and community and imagine that they are cheering me on to love and do good deeds. Recently, I have realized that the “therefore” of verse one directs my attention to the great cloud of witnesses from Hebrews 11, those commended for their faith as they followed God in reverence in fear, a fear that leads to awe and obedience.  Today, we remember their witness and properly settle our gaze on the Lord Jesus Christ, the founder and perfector of our faith.

Secondly, from Hebrews 12:2, I frequently pray that we fix our eyes on Jesus Christ for encouragement and strength, specific to this day. Christ is sufficient for you and for me today and for every day. Yet, I have often overlooked the encouragement for necessary preparation and commitment to finish well in the long-distance race we call life, life in Christ.  In fixing our eyes upon Jesus, the Scripture calls us to lay aside every weight and every sin that would hinder us from finishing well in the marathon of life in Christ.  Fixing our eyes upon Jesus includes an active faith that remains in consistent motion toward Him.  We consider Him to resist becoming weary and fainthearted (Hebrews 12:3).

To come prepared for worship, please remain in prayer for God to open the eyes of our hearts and minds.  Ask Him to enable us to worship Him in Spirit and in truth. Please pray that He would help us to draw near to Him, in the assurance that He dwells with those who are of humble and contrite heart. Seek Him to renew our minds by the truth of His Word and by the power of the Holy Spirit to the glory of His name. 

As we gather to worship the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit this Lord’s Day, we will join our hearts and voices in singing the Hymn of Praise “My Hope is in the Lord,”  the Acclamation of Praise “Jesus! What a Friend for Sinners,” and the Hymn of Response “Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah.”  Let us come to worship this Sunday prepared to hear God’s Word, to receive it in faith, to love and treasure it in our hearts, and to practice it in our lives that we may continue to glorify and enjoy Him!  

Sermon Information

Text: Hebrews 12:1-3

Title: Fix Your Eyes Upon Jesus                   

Sermon outline:                                    

     The Encouragement for the Race

  1. Let us run with faithfulness.
  2. Let us run with focus.
  3. Let us run with peace.

    “Turn Your Eyes upon Jesus”

Sunday's Bulletin

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