Home Church How-To:
If possible, we encourage you to please gather with those in your home community to read, pray, and sing aloud to one another, following the exhortation of Colossians 3:16, "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God."
- Before 10:15am, please prepare the elements for communion to eat and drink.
- At 10:15am, begin by reading the Call To Worship, followed by a prayer of thanksgiving.
- Sing the songs and read the readings below. Feel free to take turns reading if you're gathered with multiple people.
- Although we are not all under one roof, your financial support towards gospel-work is critical. Please consider giving online. You may do so by clicking HERE.
- Listen to Pastor Israel's sermon, followed by a song of praise.
- Feel free to discuss and pray together.
- If you have not done so, please sign up for Branch Groups (virtual Branch Groups for now) by clicking HERE.
- For Twigs curriculum (children), you can click HERE for a step-by-step lesson plan along with the materials to download.
Call To Worship
This is the good news—the grave is empty; Christ is risen. Hallelujah! This is the good news—the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never put it out. Hallelujah! This is the good news—once we were no people; now we are God’s people. Hallelujah! Christ is our peace, the indestructible peace we now share with each other. Hallelujah!
Light and Hope
But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they went to the tomb, taking the spices they had prepared. And they found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they went in they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were perplexed about this, behold, two men stood by them in dazzling apparel. And as they were frightened and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, “Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen. Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men and be crucified and on the third day rise.” And they remembered his words, and returning from the tomb they told all these things to the eleven and to all the rest. Now it was Mary Magdalene and Joanna and Mary the mother of James and the other women with them who told these things to the apostles, but these words seemed to them an idle tale, and they did not believe them. But Peter rose and ran to the tomb; stooping and looking in, he saw the linen cloths by themselves; and he went home marveling at what had happened. That very day two of them were going to a village named Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem, and they were talking with each other about all these things that had happened. While they were talking and discussing together, Jesus himself drew near and went with them. But their eyes were kept from recognizing him. And he said to them, “What is this conversation that you are holding with each other as you walk?” And they stood still, looking sad. Then one of them, named Cleopas, answered him, “Are you the only visitor to Jerusalem who does not know the things that have happened there in these days?” And he said to them, “What things?” And they said to him, “Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, a man who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people, and how our chief priests and rulers delivered him up to be condemned to death, and crucified him. But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since these things happened. Moreover, some women of our company amazed us. They were at the tomb early in the morning, and when they did not find his body, they came back saying that they had even seen a vision of angels, who said that he was alive. Some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but him they did not see.” And he said to them, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?” And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself. So they drew near to the village to which they were going. He acted as if he were going farther, but they urged him strongly, saying, “Stay with us, for it is toward evening and the day is now far spent.” So he went in to stay with them. When he was at table with them, he took the bread and blessed and broke it and gave it to them. And their eyes were opened, and they recognized him. And he vanished from their sight. They said to each other, “Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the Scriptures?” And they rose that same hour and returned to Jerusalem. And they found the eleven and those who were with them gathered together, saying, “The Lord has risen indeed, and has appeared to Simon!” Then they told what had happened on the road, and how he was known to them in the breaking of the bread. As they were talking about these things, Jesus himself stood among them, and said to them, “Peace to you!” But they were startled and frightened and thought they saw a spirit. And he said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself. Touch me, and see. For a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.” And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. And while they still disbelieved for joy and were marveling, he said to them, “Have you anything here to eat?” They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate before them. Then he said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled.” Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, and said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. And behold, I am sending the promise of my Father upon you. But stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high.” Then he led them out as far as Bethany, and lifting up his hands he blessed them. While he blessed them, he parted from them and was carried up into heaven. And they worshiped him and returned to Jerusalem with great joy, and were continually in the temple blessing God.
“Resurrection,” – Valley of Vision
O God of my Exodus,
Great was the joy of Israel’s sons, when Egypt died upon the shore, Far great the joy
when the Redeemer’s foe lay crushed in the dust. Jesus strides forth as the victor,
conqueror of death, hell, and all opposing might; He bursts the bands of death,
tramples the powers of darkness down,
and lives for ever. He, my gracious surety,
apprehended for payment of my debt,
comes forth from the prison house of the grave free, and triumphant over sin, Satan, and death.
Show me herein the proof that his vicarious offering is accepted, that the claims of justice are satisfied,
that the devil’s scepter is shivered,
that his wrongful throne is leveled. Give me the assurance that in Christ I died,
in him I rose,
in his life I live, in his victory I triumph, in his ascension I shall be glorified.
thou who was lifted up upon a cross
art ascended to highest heaven. Thou, who as Man of sorrows
wast crowned with thorns,
art now as Lord of life wreathed with glory. Once, no shame more deep than thine,
no agony more bitter,
no death more cruel. Now, no exaltation more high,
no life more glorious,
no advocate more effective.
Thou art in the triumph car leading captive
thine enemies behind thee.
What more could be done than thou hast done!
Thy death is my life,
thy resurrection my peace, thy ascension my hope, thy prayers my comfort.
Almighty God, in raising Jesus from the grave, you shattered the power of sin and death. We confess that we remain captive to doubt and fear, bound by the ways that lead to death. We overlook the poor and the hungry and pass by those who mourn; we are deaf to the cries of the oppressed and indifferent to calls for peace; we despise the weak and abuse the earth you made. Forgive us, God of mercy. Help us to trust your power to change our lives and make us new, that we may know the joy of life abundant given in Jesus Christ, the risen Lord.
You are not in the flesh; you are in the Spirit, since the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. But if Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies also through his Spirit that dwells in you.
Brothers and sisters, this table is for you who have been forgiven of your sins through faith in Jesus Christ. Jesus gave this sacred tradition to us, his church. Do not think that you can only come forward if you are perfect. You cannot come perfect. Jesus alone is your perfection. So you are invited to come broken, but hopeful, believing and repenting.
If you are not a Christian, the bread and the cup is not something you should receive. Only those who have received Jesus should receive communion. We encourage you to use this as a time to consider the offer of forgiveness and eternal life that Jesus holds out to all who are willing to receive Him. Place your hope in Him. You might not come forward for communion today, but you can come to Jesus today and find eternal life, which is what all of this is about.
“23 For I received from the Lord what I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took bread, 24 and when he had given thanks, he broke it, and said, “This is my body, which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” 25 In the same way also he took the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.” 26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until he comes.”
1 Corinthians 11:23-26
During this time we worship with our tithes and offerings to the Lord. We give regularly. We give sacrificially. We give cheerfully. We give and it reminds us that The Lord has given us all that we have. He gives us our very breath today. We look forward and trust that The Lord will do good things for His people and through His people to His Glory. We give and it supports our local mission and the missions we support through our church networks. Click Here to give now.