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Early Heart Prep for Holy Week and Easter, 2016

Celebrating the Passion of Jesus in the Psalms

The season when we celebrate the passion and resurrection of Jesus has come upon us quickly. This year we will be using Holy Week to celebrate the Passion of Jesus in the book of Psalms. We will have four services: Palm Sunday (March 20th), Thursday Communion (March 24th), Easter Sunrise and the main Easter Service.

Here is the YouTube playlist for the Holy Week services: Early Easter Heart Prep 2016.

(Note that ‘early,’ here, means before the order of worship for these services has been finalized. We will issue a complete Heart Prep for each service as we get closer.)

Palm Sunday – March 20, 2016
Regular service, 10:50 a.m. at the church.

Our text will be Psalm 118, with a focus on verses 19 to 29. This Psalm was a song sung to celebrate the festivals God had given to His people. In the last ten verses it also becomes a prophecy of the Messiah who would come into Jerusalem to claim the kingship of God’s people. The people welcomed him at the gate of the city crying ‘Save us,’ and “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord,’ quoting from Psalm 118.

We will sing traditional Palm Sunday hymns and songs for this service, but especially those that recognize ‘Hosanna’ as a cry for salvation.

Text: Psalm 118:19-29

Supplemental Texts: Psalm 24, Psalm 122

Thursday of Holy Week (Communion)

(March 24th, 7:00 p.m)

Our text will be Psalm 22, which is one of the most extraordinary prophecies in the whole Bible. It depicts the crucifixion in graphic detail, physically, emotionally and spiritually, even down to the words Jesus’ persecutors would say. We will walk through the Psalm and remember Jesus’ sacrifice for us, but also his victory over sin and death.

Sunrise Service

Sunday, March 27, 2016, 7:00 a.m. Nassau Bay Park)

We will celebrate the empty tomb! Joseph of Arimathea will be visiting from Jerusalem and will share his testimony concerning the resurrection of Jesus. Our texts will be Matthew 27:57-61 and John 19:31-42.

Easter Service

Sunday, March 27, 2016, 10:50 a.m. at the church.

We will celebrate the resurrection as the path to life. Our text will be Psalm 16, which was the first Scripture used by Peter on Pentecost to prove the resurrection, and was used by Paul in the same way. Both Peter and Paul also tie that resurrection from death to the new life he offers us.

Text: Psalm 16:1-11, emphasizing verses 8-10

Supplemental Texts: Psalm 2, Acts 2:22-35; Acts 13:32-41

Scriptures for Meditation. (This is a long list, which you can look at bit-by-bit as we get closer to Holy Week, or stare at while listening to the play list.)

Psalm 118:1-29
Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
for his steadfast love endures forever!
2Let Israel say, “His steadfast love endures forever.”
3Let the house of Aaron say, “His steadfast love endures forever.”
4Let those who fear the Lord say, “His steadfast love endures forever.”
5Out of my distress I called on the Lord;
the Lord answered me and set me free.
6The Lord is on my side; I will not fear.
What can man do to me? (Hebrews 13:6)
7The Lord is on my side as my helper;
I shall look in triumph on those who hate me.
8It is better to take refuge in the Lord
than to trust in man.
9It is better to take refuge in the Lord
than to trust in princes.
10All nations surrounded me;
in the name of the Lord I cut them off!
11They surrounded me, surrounded me on every side;
in the name of the Lord I cut them off!
12They surrounded me like bees;
they went out like a fire among thorns;
in the name of the Lord I cut them off!
13I was pushed hard, so that I was falling,
but the Lord helped me.
14The Lord is my strength and my song;
he has become my salvation.
15Glad songs of salvation are in the tents of the righteous:
“The right hand of the Lord does valiantly,
16the right hand of the Lord exalts,
the right hand of the Lord does valiantly!”
17I shall not die, but I shall live,
and recount the deeds of the Lord.
18The Lord has disciplined me severely,
but he has not given me over to death.
19Open to me the gates of righteousness,
that I may enter through them
and give thanks to the Lord.
20This is the gate of the Lord;
the righteous shall enter through it.
21I thank you that you have answered me
and have become my salvation.
22The stone that the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone.
23This is the Lord’s doing;
it is marvelous in our eyes. (Matthew 21:42; Mark 12:10, 11; Luke 20:17; Acts 4:11; 1 Peter 2:4,7)
24This is the day that the Lord has made;
let us rejoice and be glad in it.
25Save us, we pray, O Lord!
O Lord, we pray, give us success!
26Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!
We bless you from the house of the Lord. (Matthew 21:9; 23:39; Mark 11:9; Luke 13:35; 19:38; John 12:13)
27The Lord is God, and he has made his light to shine upon us.
Bind the festal sacrifice with cords, up to the horns of the altar!
28You are my God, and I will give thanks to you;
you are my God; I will extol you.
29Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
for his steadfast love endures forever!

Psalm 24 (Palm Sunday secondary text
Psalm 24:1-10
The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof,
the world and those who dwell therein,
2for he has founded it upon the seas
and established it upon the rivers.
3Who shall ascend the hill of the Lord?
And who shall stand in his holy place?
4He who has clean hands and a pure heart,
who does not lift up his soul to what is false
and does not swear deceitfully.
5He will receive blessing from the Lord
and righteousness from the God of his salvation.
6Such is the generation of those who seek him,
who seek the face of the God of Jacob. Selah
7Lift up your heads, O gates!
And be lifted up, O ancient doors,
that the King of glory may come in.
8Who is this King of glory?
The Lord, strong and mighty,
the Lord, mighty in battle!
9Lift up your heads, O gates!
And lift them up, O ancient doors,
that the King of glory may come in.
10Who is this King of glory?
The Lord of hosts, he is the King of glory! Selah

Psalm 122 (Palm Sunday secondary text)
Psalm 122:1-9
I was glad when they said to me,
“Let us go to the house of the Lord!”
2Our feet have been standing within your gates, O Jerusalem!
3Jerusalem—built as a city that is bound firmly together,
4to which the tribes go up, the tribes of the Lord,
as was decreed for Israel, to give thanks to the name of the Lord.
5There thrones for judgment were set, the thrones of the house of David.
6Pray for the peace of Jerusalem!
“May they be secure who love you!
7Peace be within your walls and security within your towers!”
8For my brothers and companions’ sake
I will say, “Peace be within you!”
9For the sake of the house of the Lord our God,
I will seek your good.

Psalm 22 (Thursday of Easter Week)
Psalm 22:1-31
My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
Why are you so far from saving me,
from the words of my groaning? (Matthew 27:46; Mark 15:34)
2O my God, I cry by day, but you do not answer,
and by night, but I find no rest.
3Yet you are holy, enthroned on the praises of Israel.
4In you our fathers trusted;
they trusted, and you delivered them.
5To you they cried and were rescued;
in you they trusted and were not put to shame.
6But I am a worm and not a man,
scorned by mankind and despised by the people.
7All who see me mock me;
they make mouths at me; they wag their heads; (Matthew 27:39; Mark 15:29; Luke 23:35)
8“He trusts in the Lord; let him deliver him;
let him rescue him, for he delights in him!” (Matthew 27:43)
9Yet you are he who took me from the womb;
you made me trust you at my mother’s breasts.
10On you was I cast from my birth,
and from my mother’s womb you have been my God.
11Be not far from me, for trouble is near,
and there is none to help.
12Many bulls encompass me;
strong bulls of Bashan surround me;
13they open wide their mouths at me,
like a ravening and roaring lion.
14I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint;
my heart is like wax; it is melted within my breast;
15my strength is dried up like a potsherd,
and my tongue sticks to my jaws;
you lay me in the dust of death.
16For dogs encompass me; a company of evildoers encircles me;
they have pierced my hands and feet—
17I can count all my bones— they stare and gloat over me;
18they divide my garments among them,
and for my clothing they cast lots. (John 19:24; compare Matthew 27:35; Mark 15:24; Luke 23:34)
19But you, O Lord, do not be far off!
O you my help, come quickly to my aid!
20Deliver my soul from the sword,
my precious life from the power of the dog!
21Save me from the mouth of the lion!
You have rescued me from the horns of the wild oxen!
22I will tell of your name to my brothers;
in the midst of the congregation I will praise you: (Hebrews 2:12)
23You who fear the Lord, praise him!
All you offspring of Jacob, glorify him,
and stand in awe of him, all you offspring of Israel!
24For he has not despised or abhorred the affliction of the afflicted,
and he has not hidden his face from him, but has heard, when he cried to him.
25From you comes my praise in the great congregation;
my vows I will perform before those who fear him.
26The afflicted shall eat and be satisfied;
those who seek him shall praise the Lord!
May your hearts live forever!
27All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the Lord,
and all the families of the nations shall worship before you.
28For kingship belongs to the Lord, and he rules over the nations.
29All the prosperous of the earth eat and worship;
before him shall bow all who go down to the dust,
even the one who could not keep himself alive.
30Posterity shall serve him;
it shall be told of the Lord to the coming generation;
31they shall come and proclaim his righteousness to a people yet unborn,
that he has done it.

(Resurrection Sunday Main Service)
Psalm 16:1-11
Preserve me, O God, for in you I take refuge.
2I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord;
I have no good apart from you.”
3As for the saints in the land, they are the excellent ones,
in whom is all my delight.
4The sorrows of those who run after another god shall multiply;
their drink offerings of blood I will not pour out or take their names on my lips.
5The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup; you hold my lot.
6The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.
7I bless the Lord who gives me counsel;
in the night also my heart instructs me.
8I have set the Lord always before me;
because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.
9Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices;
my flesh also dwells secure.
10For you will not abandon my soul to Sheol,
or let your holy one see corruption. (Acts 13:35)
11You make known to me the path of life;
in your presence there is fullness of joy;
at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. (Acts 2:25-28)

Psalm 2 (Resurrection Sunday secondary text)
Psalm 2:1-12
Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain?
2The kings of the earth set themselves,
and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord
and against his Anointed, saying,
3“Let us burst their bonds apart and cast away their cords from us.”
4He who sits in the heavens laughs; the Lord holds them in derision.
5Then he will speak to them in his wrath, and terrify them in his fury, saying,
6“As for me, I have set my King on Zion, my holy hill.”
7I will tell of the decree: The Lord said to me,
“You are my Son; today I have begotten you.
8Ask of me, and I will make the nations your heritage,
and the ends of the earth your possession.
9You shall break them with a rod of iron
and dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.”
10Now therefore, O kings, be wise; be warned, O rulers of the earth.
11Serve the Lord with fear, and rejoice with trembling.
12Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and you perish in the way,
for his wrath is quickly kindled. Blessed are all who take refuge in him.

Acts 2:22-36 “Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with mighty works and wonders and signs that God did through him in your midst, as you yourselves know— 23this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men. 24God raised him up, loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it. 25For David says concerning him, “‘I saw the Lord always before me, for he is at my right hand that I may not be shaken; 26therefore my heart was glad, and my tongue rejoiced; my flesh also will dwell in hope. 27For you will not abandon my soul to Hades, or let your Holy One see corruption. 28You have made known to me the paths of life; you will make me full of gladness with your presence.’ 29“Brothers, I may say to you with confidence about the patriarch David that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us to this day. 30Being therefore a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that he would set one of his descendants on his throne, 31he foresaw and spoke about the resurrection of the Christ, that he was not abandoned to Hades, nor did his flesh see corruption. 32This Jesus God raised up, and of that we all are witnesses. 33Being therefore exalted at the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, he has poured out this that you yourselves are seeing and hearing. 34For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he himself says, “‘The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at my right hand, 35until I make your enemies your footstool.”’ 36Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.”

Acts 13:32-41 And we bring you the good news that what God promised to the fathers, 33this he has fulfilled to us their children by raising Jesus, as also it is written in the second Psalm, “‘You are my Son, today I have begotten you.’ 34And as for the fact that he raised him from the dead, no more to return to corruption, he has spoken in this way, “‘I will give you the holy and sure blessings of David.’ 35Therefore he says also in another psalm, “‘You will not let your Holy One see corruption.’ 36For David, after he had served the purpose of God in his own generation, fell asleep and was laid with his fathers and saw corruption, 37but he whom God raised up did not see corruption. 38Let it be known to you therefore, brothers, that through this man forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you, 39and by him everyone who believes is freed from everything from which you could not be freed by the law of Moses. 40Beware, therefore, lest what is said in the Prophets should come about: 41“‘Look, you scoffers, be astounded and perish; for I am doing a work in your days, a work that you will not believe, even if one tells it to you.’”