The 4th Sunday after the Epiphany
The evidence of Christmas is that God came to dwell with us taking on human flesh. A word for speaking of the mystery of Jesus Christ being both God and man is 'incarnation.' God took up human flesh and became one of us.
Per the Worship Sourcebook, "The incarnation involves much more than the drama of Christmas itself; it brings
a vision of God’s glory to the nations of the world."
And, "Our word epiphany comes from a Greek word meaning “manifestation or appearance,” and in church history, this word has become closely associated with the revelation of Christ in connection with the visit of the Magi."
In the weeks following Christmas, we take the approach of those ancient Magi who after seeing Jesus they worship in the "epiphany" that he is worthy to receive glory and honor as the hope of the nations. Let us praise Christ the Lord.
Opening of Worship
The Lord be with you.
And also with you.
Psalm 92:1-2 says,
It is good to praise the LORD
and make music to your name, O Most High,
proclaiming your love in the morning
and your faithfulness at night.
If you are spiritually weary and in search of rest,
if you are mourning and you long for comfort,
if you are struggling and you desire victory,
if you recognize that you are a sinner and need a Savior,
God welcomes you here in the name of Christ.
To the stranger in need of fellowship,
to those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
and to whoever will come,
this congregation opens wide its doors
and welcomes all in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.
He is our light and our salvation.
Let us pray and praise together.
The Old Testament // The Prophets
Micah 6:1–8 (NIV)
The LORD’s Case Against Israel
1 Listen to what the LORD says:
“Stand up, plead my case before the mountains;
let the hills hear what you have to say.
2 “Hear, you mountains, the LORD’s accusation;
listen, you everlasting foundations of the earth.
For the LORD has a case against his people;
he is lodging a charge against Israel.
3 “My people, what have I done to you?
How have I burdened you? Answer me.
4 I brought you up out of Egypt
and redeemed you from the land of slavery.
I sent Moses to lead you,
also Aaron and Miriam.
5 My people, remember
what Balak king of Moab plotted
and what Balaam son of Beor answered.
Remember your journey from Shittim to Gilgal,
that you may know the righteous acts of the LORD.”
6 With what shall I come before the LORD
and bow down before the exalted God?
Shall I come before him with burnt offerings,
with calves a year old?
7 Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams,
with ten thousand rivers of olive oil?
Shall I offer my firstborn for my transgression,
the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?
8 He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
And what does the LORD require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly with your God.
The Psalm // A Sacred Song
Psalm 15 (NIV)
1 LORD, who may dwell in your sacred tent?
Who may live on your holy mountain?
2 The one whose walk is blameless,
who does what is righteous,
who speaks the truth from their heart;
3 whose tongue utters no slander,
who does no wrong to a neighbor,
and casts no slur on others;
4 who despises a vile person
but honors those who fear the LORD;
who keeps an oath even when it hurts,
and does not change their mind;
5 who lends money to the poor without interest;
who does not accept a bribe against the innocent.
Whoever does these things
will never be shaken.
Generosity & Giving
The tithes and donations you make to DreamHouse Church make a difference to our church, our community, the people of Newport News, and world missions. There are various ways you can donate. We pass a collection plate during services and electronic giving is available for 24/7 donations. “Honor the Lord with your wealth, with the firstfruits of all your crops” (Proverbs 3:9).
The New Testament // Acts & the Epistles
1 Corinthians 1:18-31 (NIV)
For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written:
“I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.”
Where is the wise person? Where is the teacher of the law? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not know him, God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe. Jews demand signs and Greeks look for wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, but to those whom God has called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength.
Brothers and sisters, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth. But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him. It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. Therefore, as it is written: “Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord.”
Matthew 5:1-12 (NRSV)
When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain; and after he sat down, his disciples came to him.
Then he began to speak, and taught them, saying:
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
“Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.
“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
“Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy.
“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.
“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
“Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account.
Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
The Lord's Supper // Communion
Congregation of Jesus Christ, the Lord has
prepared his table for all who love him and
trust in him alone for their salvation.
All who are truly sorry for their sins, who sincerely believe in the Lord Jesus as their Savior, and who desire to live
in obedience to him as
Lord are now invited to come with gladness to the table of the Lord.
The gifts of God for the people of God.
Hear the words of the institution of the Holy
Supper of our Lord Jesus Christ:
The Lord Jesus, on the night of his arrest, took bread, and after giving thanks to God,
he broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying,
“Take, eat. This is my body, given for you. Do
this in remembrance of me.”
In the same way he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant sealed
in my blood, shed for you
for the forgiveness of sins.
Whenever you drink it,
do this in remembrance of me.”
Every time you eat this bread and drink this
cup, you proclaim the saving death of the risen Lord until he comes.
let us offer God our grateful praise.
—based on 1 Corinthians 11:23-26
[as the bread is shared]
The body of Christ, given for you.
Thanks be to God.
[as the cup is shared]
The blood of Christ, shed for you.
Thanks be to God.
Response of Praise
God, who nourishes us for the journey,
it is strengthening to know that
as we have gathered at your table today,
your people throughout the world
are offering praise and thanksgiving
as bread and wine are shared.
May the mystery of your presence, experienced in our worship,
bind us together into one worldwide community. Amen.
Doxology and Benediction // The Sending & the Blessing
As you have been fed at this table, go to feed the hungry.
As you have been set free, go to set free the imprisoned.
As you have received, give.
As you have heard, proclaim.
And the blessing that you have received
from Father, Son, and Holy Spirit
be always with you. Amen.