Reign of Christ Sunday 2022

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Lord of all being, throned afar,

your glory flames from sun and star;

center and soul of ev’ry sphere,

yet to each loving heart how near!

We give thanks to you, Redeemer God, for our Lord Jesus Christ, who came in quietness and humility, but who will come again with power and for all to see. Our Lord Jesus Christ’ coming again is a two-edged sword. It comforts us, convinces us anew that your grace is beyond measure. Yet it also confronts us, compels us to recognize our own unrighteousness. Let us put aside our false pride, confess our sins,and receive your affirming love.

Gracious Father, we confess that all too often we do not think of our coming King. We do not live our lives in the expectant and obedient waiting to which your word summons us. Too often we do not live with the sense of urgency for the task you have set before your church.We put off bringing the gospel to the world and living out your kingdom’s values of justice and righteousness. Forgive us, loving Lord. Cleanse us and fill us with your Spirit and with power, so that at Christ’s triumphant return we may be counted worthy to stand before you with people of all tongues and nations. Amen.

Thanks be to God, who has loved us from the beginning, and who promises that if we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and will purify us from all unrighteousness.Our Sovereign Lord will wipe away the tears from all faces, he will remove the disgrace of his people from the earth. In that day we will say, Surely this is our God, we trusted in him, and he saved us. Let us rejoice in his salvation.

We believe that our Lord Jesus, who ascended into heaven after his resurrection will come again in the same way. The Lord himself will come from heaven with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive will be caught up together with them to meet the Lord. And so we will be with the Lord forever.

When Christ returns, he will establish justice and righteousness in the earth. He will bring to fulfillment the kingdom of God, and he will reign as King of Kings and Lord of Lords.In that day, at the name of Jesus every knee will bow in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

We believe the day of Christ’s return will be one of rejoicing and vindication for God’s people, but will also be a day of judgement for those who have rejected Christ’s reign. We believe our loving God desires that none should perish, and so we ask to be empowered with zeal and humility to proclaim the word of truth in a world too often unaware of coming judgement.We join with the saints throughout the ages in declaring: Christ has died, Christ is risen, Christ will come again!’

Since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, indeed by all the saints who have gone before us, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfector of our faith.Christ, Bringer of Justice, we ask for courage and boldness to stand by the poor and oppressed,to work for justice in this present world as we anticipate your perfect justice to come.

Christ, Hope of the World, we ask that your Holy Spirit move among those who have yet to hear, that their hearts maybe softened and prepared for the message of the gospel.Christ, Lord of the Church, we ask for help for your church to love as we truly are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to you, who live to declare your praises, for you called us out of darkness into your wonderful light.


WATCHWORD FOR THE WEEK

Be still, and know that I am God! I am exalted among the nations, I am exalted in the earth.
Psalm 46:10


TODAY’S WATCHWORD

Return, O faithless children, says the Lord, for I am your master; I will take you, and I will bring you to Zion.
Jeremiah 3:14


DOCTRINAL TEXT

The son set off and went to his father. But while he was still far off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion; he ran and put his arms around him and kissed him.
Luke 15:20


PRAYER FOR TODAY

Forgiving Father, you call us to return to you when we have strayed. You offer us compassion and forgiveness we don’t deserve. Thank you for your great love, your welcoming grace, and your desire to bring us home.
Amen

January 2023
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