As I sit here typing this out today, I am excited about Sunday. Aren’t you?
Sunday is not a regular day for followers of Christ. Every Sunday is Easter for us, reminding us how Jesus rose from the dead so many years ago. And, since He is risen, He has had a standing appointment with His people for generations. We should be as excited every week as we are on Easter Sunday. Jesus is alive. He is risen, just as He said.
Covid-19 has not changed this, but, rather than letting my words stir you up, let God’s Word speak for itself. Check out Isaiah 25:8:
“He will swallow up death forever; and the Lord God will wipe away tears from all faces, and the reproach of His people He will take away from all the earth, for the Lord has spoken.”
While this was a future event for Isaiah, it is reality for us! That’s right: death has been swallowed up, defeated by Christ on the cross and in His empty tomb! That’s good news! He has paid the price for us and freed us from sin and the grave and given us His Life!
But that’s not all. Isaiah’s prophecy has future promises for us. It points to the future we see in Revelation 21:3-4:
“And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be His people, and God Himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.'”
And that’s what we’re singing about this week. We are rejoicing in the victory that Christ has already won! We are recognizing the shackles and chains that come from sin and celebrating the God who breaks chains and brings freedom! Praise God that there is power in His Name and that He has made a Way for lost sinners – dead in their trespasses and sins – are made alive and receive eternal life by grace through faith in Him. Amen!
These verses were on my heart this week as the worship set came together:
- Psalm 107:1-2, 14-15 — Oh give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, for His steadfast love endures forever! Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom He has redeemed from trouble…. He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death, and burst their bonds apart. Let them thank the Lord for His steadfast love, for His wondrous works to the children of man!”
- Acts 4:12 — And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.
- Psalm 145:9 — The Lord is good to all, and His mercy is over all that He has made.
Here are our songs:
- https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+1%3A4-5&version=ESV“Chain Breaker” — This song gets me pumped up because it reminds me of what Jesus has done in my life. Without Him, I am left in the shackles of my sin and failure. With Him, I am free! This basically starts our worship off with an invitation: “If you need freedom, or saving, He’s a prison-shaking Savior. If you’ve got chains, He’s a chain breaker.” And that’s Who we’re pointing to throughout the worship set.
- “Goodness of God” — This is a new song for us, and tomorrow will be the first time we sing it in worship at CCC. This song serves as a constant reminder of why God is good and His being worthy of our worship. Read the verses below to see why we’re singing it. But check out the lyrics to the bridge based on Psalm 23 and Luke 9: “Your goodness is running after, it’s running after me. With my life laid down, I surrender now; I give you everything.” This is an appropriate response to God pursuing us!
- Scripture References / Inspiration for the Song: Deuteronomy 6:5, Lamentations 3:22-23, Isaiah 64:8, Psalm 139:16, Deuteronomy 6:7, Psalm 113:3, 2 Timothy 2:13, Psalm 27:13, Psalm 31:19, Psalm 145:9, Psalm 150:6, Psalm 107:1, 1 Kings 19:11-12, Hebrews 1:3, Isaiah 43:1-3, Jeremiah 23:23-24, John 15:14-15, Psalm 23:6, Luke 9:23-24
- “Your Great Name” — Acts 4:12 tells us “there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved”. This song walks through many of the ways this plays out. He takes our sin and fear. He guards us and redeems us. He is our Savior, Defender, Redeemer, and He is worthy. And His Name – the Name of Jesus – is to be lifted high because He is God and worthy of worship!
- Scripture References / Inspiration for the Song: Acts 4:12, Luke 19:10, Psalm 106:8, John 3:17, Romans 8:1, 1 John 4:18, James 4:7-8, Revelation 5:9-10, Philippians 2:9-11, 2 Corinthians 12:9-11, Psalm 107:9, Psalm 68:5, Matthew 4:24, John 11:1-44, Job 19:25, Psalm 103:3, Revelation 11:17, Proverbs 23:11, Revelation 17:14
- “Resurrecting” — The cross is important. It represents Jesus taking our sin and His sacrificial death for us. And, while this song emphasizes it as well, the symbol for Christianity is the empty tomb! As I said earlier, every Sunday is Easter, and “Resurrecting” reminds us of that! Jesus rose in victory, and the same power that rose Jesus from the grave lives in us! Though we were once “dead in the trespasses and sins in which we once walked”, we are “made…alive together with Christ” (Ephesians 2:1, 5)!
- Scripture References / Inspiration for the Song: John 19:2-5, Hebrews 2:9, John 13:1-17, Philippians 2:10, 1 Peter 2:24, Psalm 93:1, Matthew 4:16, John 1:4-5, 1 John 4:18, John 8:12, Acts 4:8-12, Isaiah 25:8, Hebrews 2:14, 1 Corinthians 15:55-57, Psalm 145:1, Romans 6:23, John 14:27, Romans 8:9-11, Galatians 4:6, 1 Corinthians 15:3-8, Galatians 2:19-20, Matthew 27:65-28:4, Acts 4:33
- “Just As I Am (I Come Broken)” — This is a newer take on the classic hymn. This hymn has been used in churches for many years; in fact, it was written in 1834. The inspiration for the original poem is John 6:37 where Jesus says, “All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out.” This song serves as a reminder that “all who call on the name of the Lord will be saved” (Romans 10:13). Some time back, this chorus was added. It encompasses the testimony of all believers, and is a good reminder of why we need a Savior.
- Scripture References / Inspiration for the Song: John 6:37, Romans 10:13, Romans 3:23, Luke 22:20, Matthew 11:28, John 1:29, Psalm 51:2, 1 John 1:9, Psalm 51:17, 1 Peter 2:24, Psalm 22:8, 2 Timothy 4:18, Romans 15:13, Galatians 4:4-5, Ephesians 2:13, Jeremiah 33:8, 1 Peter 1:18-19, Luke 15:20, Luke 19:10, Ephesians 2:4-5, Galatians 6:14