Sunday 11 March, 2018 – Fourth Sunday in Lent, Year B

Here are the resources you need for this Sunday. Please feel free to choose what is suitable for your congregation’s needs. You will notice that the orders of service are available in different formats: choose the “pdf” format if you want something that is ready to print and photocopy, the “doc” or “rtf” format if you wish to change the formatting yourself or the “ppt” format if you use PowerPoint.

Altar colour: Violet

Bible readings:
FIRST READING Numbers 21:4-9 The snake of bronze in the desert
PSALM Psalm 107:1-3, 17-22*For musical settings of this Psalm, please see the song suggestions below*
SECOND READING Ephesians 2:1-10 Saved by grace through faith
GOSPEL John 3:14-21 Jesus brings life and light to the world

Notes on the readings:

NUMBERS 21:4-9: Surely evidence such as God’s powerful deliverance of the Hebrews from helpless slavery in Egypt, the parting of the Red Sea, and the destruction of Pharaoh’s army should have convinced them of their safety under his care. Yet repeated rebellion and continue carping criticism met his gracious providence. The punishment in today’s readings brought death through snake bite. A similar bronze figure raised on a pole called for the obedience of simple faith to overcome the consequence of sin and to bring healing.

EPHESIANS 2:1-10: St Paul never had any doubts about the effective presence of a personal power of evil. Satan is active in that disobedience and sinful indulgence which brings about human separation from God. Be gratefully mindful therefore that God has by his own gracious miracle made us alive ‘in Christ’ when we were spiritually dead. We have been saved through our faith in Jesus; remember our own works have not saved us, but his eternally planned new creation has fitted us for a new life of holiness in his Son. That is part of his purpose.

JOHN 3:14-21: You would think that if salvation is free simply through looking up to Jesus who was ‘lifted up’ for our sin that many more would be saved. Sadly that is not the case. John tells us that the last thing the Father wants is to condemn the world. Otherwise he would not have sent his Son. However, the personal love of sin and darkness, together with pride in not wanting it to be exposed, prevents all too many from receiving his light for their salvation. It then tragically becomes judgment instead. Our prime aim then is to bring our sin into the light of the Father to permit his salvation through his Son (which has removed our condemnation) to transform our deeds also into light.

Sermons:
Lay-readers please note: the linked sermons have not been edited for general use. As part of your preparations, keep in mind that they have been written for specific people in a specific context, and for this reason the issues they address or the examples they use may not be entirely suitable for people in your congregation. If you feel this is the case, you may need to make minor adjustments or find another sermon
Based on first reading: Pr Tim Stringer ; Pr Heath Pukallus
Based on second reading: edited for lay reading sermon – ephesians 2 1-10 – year b – lent 4 ; edited for lay reading sermon – ephesians 2 1-10 – year b – lent 4
Based on gospel: Pr Tim Stringer ; Pr Andrew Brook

Opening sentences:
For by grace you have been saved through faith,
and this is not your own doing;
it is the gift of God – not the result of works,
so that no one may boast.  (Eph 2:8,9 NRSV)
OR
Just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness,
so must the Son of Man be lifted up,
that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.  
(John 3:14 NRSV)

Orders of service:
Lent Sunday Word and Prayer (pdf / doc / ppt)
Service of the Word (pdf / rtf / ppt)
Morning Praise (pdf / rtf / ppt)
Service without communion (pdf / doc / ppt)
Service orders with holy communion
Service with communion (page 6) (pdf / doc / ppt )
Alternative form A (page 58) (pdf / doc/ ppt)
Sing the Feast (Chataway) (pdf / doc/ ppt)
Simplified Spoken (pdf / doc/ ppt)
Service with Five Songs of Faith (pdf / rtf/ ppt)

Prayer of the Day (Collect): Choose one of the following
Traditional
Almighty God, grant that we,
who justly suffer for our evil deeds,
may be relieved
by the comfort of your grace;
through your Son,
Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.
Amen.

OR, modernised traditional
Almighty God,
we justly suffer for our evil deeds,
but we ask you to relieve us
by the comfort of your kindness.
We ask this through your Son,
Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.
Amen.

OR, alternative
(Let us pray for strength in our weakness. [silence])
Almighty and merciful God,
you love us and make all things new in Christ.
Transform the poverty of our nature
by the riches of your kindness,
and make known your heavenly glory
in the renewal of our lives.
We ask this through your Son,
Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.
Amen.

OR, new
(Let us pray for faith in Jesus our Saviour. [silence])
Loving Father,
when we were captive
in the darkness of sin and death,
your Son rescued us
and brought us back to you.
Teach us to trust in him
and to live as your people.
We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.
Amen.

VERSE (after the second reading)
Use either the Verse given in the order of service or the following verse.
(Jesus said:) Just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up,
that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.  
(John 3:14,15 NRSV)

Prayer after the gospel
This is the gospel of the Lord.
Praise to you, O Christ.
Thank you, Lord Jesus,
for dying on the cross so that we might live.
Help us to believe in you and live in your light.
Amen.

Children’s Address: Lent 4B

Offering Prayer:
Thank you, heavenly Father,
for giving your Son so that we can have eternal life.
Strengthen our faith in him.
Guide us to live in the light of Christ,
and to give ourselves in love to other people.
Amen.

Prayer of the Church/ General Prayer: Prayer of the Church- Lent 4B or Prayer of the Church – Lent 4B alt

Resources for services with Holy Communion

SEASONAL PREFACE
It is indeed right and good,
Lord God, holy Father,
that we should at all times and in all places
give thanks to you,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
He has taken on himself our sin,
so that we might die to sin
and live to righteousness.
And so, with angels and archangels,
and with all the company of heaven,
we adore and praise your glorious name:

COMMUNION INVITATION

Every time we eat this bread and drink from this cup
we proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.
(Thanks be to God.)
Come, everything is ready.

PRAYER AFTER COMMUNION

The following variation of the post-communion prayer may be used during Lent.

Let us pray.
Heavenly Father, as you did not spare your own Son,
but gave him up to die on the cross for us all:
Grant that we who have received
his body and blood in the sacrament
may live in him and he in us,
so that, as your children,
we may walk in your ways
and serve you all the days of our life;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.
Amen.

Alternatively, use the third prayer of the day (as listed above) at this point. It may be modified as follows.

Almighty and merciful God,
you love us and make all things new in Christ.
Transform the poverty of our nature
by the riches of your kindness
which you have shown to us in this holy meal.
Make known your heavenly glory
in the renewal of our lives.
We ask this through your Son,
Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.
Amen.

SEASONAL BLESSING
This seasonal blessing is used together with (ie before) the usual blessing in the order of service.

(May) Christ our crucified Saviour draw you to himself,
so that you may find in him the assurance of sins forgiven
and the gift of eternal life; . . .

DISMISSAL
Go in peace, and live in the light of Christ.
Thanks be to God. 
OR  In the name of Christ. Amen.

Visual images for the day: His Word in Pictures

Song/Hymn suggestions: * =  Modernised version available (please click here to go to the Modernised hymns page) ;G3, G4 . . . =  Guitar chords available in the Music Package 3, 4 . . .; GS =  Guitar chords in the Supplement to LH

First reading: Numbers 21:4-9
LHS

53     Jesus, refuge of the weary* G3
75     We sing the praise of Him who died G5 (see TIS 347)
AT

TIS
347     We sing the praise of him who died

Second reading: Ephesians 2:1-10
LHS

112     Hail, Thou once despised Jesus G3 (mod TIS 373)
281     Jesus Christ, our blessed Saviour G8
322     Dear Christians, one and all rejoice* G3 (mod TIS 196)
324     Salvation unto us has come* G5 (mod TIS 195)
326     O how great is Thy compassion* G3
330     Rock of ages, cleft for me G6
449     Give to our God immortal praise (see TIS 84)
777     Father in heaven GS
851     Amazing grace, how sweet the sound GS (see TIS 129)
AT
115     Father in heaven
131     Amazing grace
171     Dying you destroyed our death
225     Why do you love me
352     Your love keeps following me
438    It’s gonna be alright
446    Mercy
TIS
84     Give to our God immortal praise
118     We give immortal praise
129     Amazing grace
195     Salvation now to us has come
196     Dear Christians, one and all, rejoice
213     Father, whose everlasting love
222     Rock of ages, cleft for me
373     Hail, our once despised Jesus
465     Father in heaven

Gospel: John 3:14-21
LHS

62     My song is love unknown (vv 1,2,5) G5 (alt tune A8, G8) (see TIS 341)
177     O my Saviour, lifted G5 (see TIS 600)
441     With joyful heart your praises bring* G3
757     On my heart imprint your image
793     To God be the glory GS (see TIS 147)
807     Lift high the cross GS (see TIS 351)
835     Bread of heaven, on you we feed G5
852     God loved the world so that he gave G5
881     O Lord my God, when I in awesome wonder G7
AT
126     The light of Christ
129     Everyone
237     John 3:16
349     There is a redeemer
451    Saviour of the world
627   Unconditionally
684   Who am I
TIS
147     To God be the glory
155     O Lord my God, when I in awesome wonder
164     The great love of God
174     Morning glory, starlit sky
241     So God loved the people of the world
341     My song is love unknown (vv 1,2,7)
351     Lift high the cross
513     Bread of heaven, on you we feed
600     O my Saviour, lifted
676     A spendthrift lover is the Lord
771     Now to him who loved us, gave us

OTHER ‘ALTOGETHER’ SONGS SUITABLE DURING LENT AND HOLY WEEK
22    He was wounded
24    God’s love
27    Lord of the Dance
59    Jesus
61    Hallelujah, my Father
67    Let your word fill my days
125   Celebration song
133   Jesus set us free
135   Bitter was the night
139   Christ humbled Himself
141    Mary’s child
143   Jesus dying on the cross
147   When our life began again
188   Reaching out with open arms
190  The Way is low
203   Keeping my eyes on You
227   Allelu!
230   Christ the worker
231    A Cry in the night
235    In your hand, my Saviour
244    We have seen the Word of life (Verse 3)
245    You are the prisoner
261    The Servant King
287   Stay here
331   Turn to me with all your heart
335   And we stood right there
338   God in human shoes
344   The New Road
345   Nothing but the blood
347   O dearest Jesus
349   There is a redeemer
387   Jesus, remember me
401   Follow me
451   Saviour of the world
461   God, you take our breath away
495   Come and follow me
536   If you were a king
538   They went to the garden
571   On that final night
600  Jesus the bright morning star
622   Out of this world
626   Together through the valley
630   You would not
635   How deep the Father’s love for us
658   Jesus, You are the bread
659   Remember now my children
668   As you have loved

PSALM 107
The following paraphrase of Psalm 107:1-3,17-22 by David Schütz is sung to Dominus regit me (LH 391, TIS 145). If reproducing this version, please put ‘Words (c) David Schütz’ at the beginning or the end of the psalm.O thank the Lord for he is good,
his love endures forever.
Let this be said by those the Lord
redeemed from all their trouble.

Let those he gathered from the ends
of earth where they were scattered,
from north and south and east and west,
give thanks to him with praises.

When some were sick because of sin,
and suffered for their evil,
they could not bear to touch their food
and soon were near to dying.

They cried to God in their distress,
he saved them from their trouble.
He sent his healing word to them,
and saved them from destruction.

So let them thank the Lord for all
the steadfast love he showed them.
And for the kindness he has shown
to humankind, now praise him.

And let us sacrifice to God
an offering of thanksgiving,
and tell of all the things he’s done,
with singing and rejoicing.

Music Resources Vol 3– Psalm settings- Psalm 107 p179

OTHER HELPFUL WEBSITES FOR CHURCH MUSIC
While the LCA does not necessarily endorse the content of these websites, you may find them helpful in your worship planning.
Small Church Music: You can download mp3 and midi files of popular hymn tunes from this site.
Together to Celebrate: lectionary based song and hymn suggestions from a variety of sources.
Singing from the Lectionary: has song and hymn suggestions based on the RCL from other hymnals.
Song Select: you can search for more contemporary songs by theme. If your congregation has a paid subscription you can also download sheet music.
Hymns Without Words: mp3 downloads of hymn tunes.
Song and Hymn Index. Contains all the indexes of the LHS and AT books in one Excel file. Download the file (zip file) here.
Metrical Psalms by Dale Schoening : Psalms set to well known hymn tunes.
Keyboard Accompaniments for Together in Song – CDs are available for purchase through ACR. CD 1 & 2 ; CD 3 & 4.

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