Order, Words, & Voices 05.01.22

Order

Sunday, May 1, 2022

Pre Worship Audio (10:15am)

Welcome/Call to Worship (10:30)  Rick

Music 1 – Standing Billy & Abbie

Agnes Dei

Tell Me The Story Of Jesus

I Love To Tell the Story

Prayer Rick

Scripture Matthew 28:1-10 On Line-Duffy

Music 2 Billy & Abbie

I Love You Lord

Oh How I Love Jesus

Message Verbalizing Fear and Joy Rick

Congregational Response 

Benediction (signal ? when ready) InPerson-Segun

Music 3 Revelation Song Billy & Abbie

Community (Gallery View) Rick

Closing Peace                                         Rick

Closing Audio

Words and Voices

Welcome (No slides) (Abbie sings accapela parentheses)

Today we continue to focus on the four accounts of the resurrection, this morning we stop at the gospel of Matthew. Mark invited us to step into the story while John focuses on Mary Magdalene, who was ready and willing to be the preacher of the story of Jesus’ resurrection. 

Matthew’s resurrection account lets us see Mary, and the others,  processing life, death, and then life again. Digging deep into the pain and agony while, at the same time, parsing through the adrenaline rush of amazement and joy. Processing in preparation for the call to verbalize life, death, and life anew.

Life and death. Life and death and life. This is the story of Easter, the story of  the resurrection, the story in which we are allowed an upfront seat to watch the followers of Jesus process Jesus’ life, death, and life – at a bloodied cross and an empty grave and then into the new rhythms of their lives.

In our human thought process, death rarely is a moment of joy and joy is seldom an element of death. Death never arrives at an opportune time. Death is seldom about one death, it is usually accompanied by other deaths, a death of hope, a death of dreams, a death of so much that we hold dear. Our human thought process leads us to think of life and death as linear, life then death. Our eternal thought process thinks of life wrapped in death and death wrapped in life.

The story had begun days before as an enormous crowd lined the streets yelling the joy through two words of praise – Hallelujah and Hosannah. The week ended with with subtle utterances of a solemn word of praise – Alleluia. (Alleluia)

Mary Magdalene and the other Mary’s stood near the cross, able to look directly into the eyes of Jesus, making a visual connection with Jesus, a moment where they saw Jesus and Jesus noticed each one of them. Standing close enough to hear Jesus’ cries of physical pain, his plea to quench his thirst, to eavesdrop on the moment when the Father rejection the Son. (Alleluia)

Imagine standing almost close enough to touch Jesus yet too far to be of any help. Being able to feel the pain and to see the agony, but a world away to fully understand or process the meaning. Imagine, watching while this man of mercy, compassion, and love, was dying a brutal and undeserved death. (For the Lord God Almighty reigns)

This was the death of hope, the death of eternity, the death of righteousness, the death of justice, the death of peace. This was the death of the dreams of the women as they stood looking up at the cross. (Alleluia)

And then, before the processing journey could come to a conclusion, this same group stood at the empty tomb. A tomb where Jesus’ body should have been laid on the stone, but the tomb was empty. A mysterious messenger pronounced that Jesus had gone on ahead, sticking with the plan to move forward (Alleluia)

It is no wonder that the resurrection accounts hold to a climax of continuation and confusion, of terror and amazement, of fear and joy. (For the Lord God Almighty reigns)

This is the story of Easter, this is the experience of the Resurrection, this is the eternal moment of our realized completed hope.

(Alleluia, alleluia, For the Lord God Almighty reigns
Alleluia, alleluia, For the Lord God Almighty reigns
Alleluia)

(Billy joins in with accompaniment and voice as Abbie sings,

You are Holy holy
Are You Lord God Almighty
Worthy is the Lamb
Worthy is the Lamb)

 Then move into Agnus Dei full song with words displayedMusic 1 (21 slides)

Agnus Dei 

CCLI Song # 626713 Michael W. Smith

Verse

Alleluia alleluia
For the Lord God Almighty reigns
Alleluia alleluia
For the Lord God Almighty reigns
Alleluia

Chorus

You are Holy holy
Are You Lord God Almighty
Worthy is the Lamb
Worthy is the Lamb

You are holy holy
Are You Lord God Almighty
Worthy is the Lamb
Worthy is the Lamb
Amen

Tell Me The Story Of Jesus

CCLI Song # 33399 Crosby | Sweney

Chorus

Tell me the story of Jesus
Write on my heart every word
Tell me the story most precious
Sweetest that ever was heard

Verse 1

Tell me the story of Jesus
Write on my heart every word
Tell me the story most precious
Sweetest that ever was heard

Tell how the angels in chorus
Sang as they welcomed His birth
Glory to God in the highest
Peace and good tidings to earth 

Chorus

Tell me the story of Jesus
Write on my heart every word
Tell me the story most precious
Sweetest that ever was heard

Verse 2

Fasting alone in the desert
Tell of the days that are past
How for our sins He was tempted
Yet was triumphant at last


Tell of the years of His labour
Tell of the sorrow He bore
He was despised and afflicted
Homeless rejected and poor

Chorus

Tell me the story of Jesus
Write on my heart every word
Tell me the story most precious
Sweetest that ever was heard

Verse 3

Tell of the cross where they nailed Him
Writhing in anguish and pain
Tell of the grave where they laid Him
Tell how He liveth again


Love in that story so tender
Clearer than ever I see
Stay let me weep while you whisper
Love paid the ransom for me

I Love To Tell The Story

CCLI Song # 29413

Arabella Katherine Hankey | William Gustavus Fischer

Verse 1

I love to tell the story
Of unseen things above
Of Jesus and His glory
Of Jesus and His love


I love to tell the story
Because I know ’tis true
It satisfies my longings
As nothing else can do

Chorus

I love to tell the story
‘Twill be my theme in glory
To tell the old old story
Of Jesus and His love

Verse 2

I love to tell the story
More wonderful it seems
Than all the golden fancies
Of all our golden dreams


I love to tell the story
It did so much for me
And that is just the reason
I tell it now to thee

Chorus

I love to tell the story
‘Twill be my theme in glory
To tell the old old story
Of Jesus and His love

Verse 4

I love to tell the story
For those who know it best
Seem hungering and thirsting
To hear it like the rest


And when in scenes of glory
I sing the new new song
‘Twill be the old old story
That I have loved so long

Chorus

I love to tell the story
‘Twill be my theme in glory
To tell the old old story
Of Jesus and His love

Prayer (7 Slides total)

[Prayer title slide only until ‘Our Father] God, we come before you today as we process. Process Life, Death, and Life again. 

God open our eyes to see your compassion, mercy, 

and love in the story of Easter. 

Open our hearts to bathe in your love. 

Open our ears to hear your voice of hope. 

Open our minds to your plan.

[Please join in the Lord’s prayer, words are on the screen] [7 slides begin] 

Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.

Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread.

And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: 

For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. 

Amen.

(Matthew 6:9-13 KJV)

Scripture (No Slides)

After the sabbath, as the first day of the week was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. And suddenly there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord, descending from heaven, came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. For fear of him the guards shook and became like dead men. But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid; I know that you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for he has been raised, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay.Then go quickly and tell his disciples, ‘He has been raised from the dead, and indeed he is going ahead of you to Galilee; there you will see him.’ This is my message for you.” So they left the tomb quickly with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples. Suddenly Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!” And they came to him, took hold of his feet, and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me.”

Matthew 28:1-10

Music 2 (8 slides)

I Love You Lord

CCLI Song # 25266

Laurie Klein

Chorus

I love You Lord
And I lift my voice
To worship You
O my soul rejoice

Take joy my King
In what You hear
May it be a sweet sweet sound
In Your ear

(Repeat)

Oh How I Love Jesus

CCLI Song # 4596756

Bob Singleton

Chorus

Oh how I love Jesus
Oh how I love Jesus
Oh how I love Jesus
Because He first loved me

Verse 1

There is a name I love to hear
I love to sing its worth
It sounds like music in my ear
The sweetest name on earth

Chorus

Oh how I love Jesus
Oh how I love Jesus
Oh how I love Jesus
Because He first loved me

Verse 2

It tells me of a Savior’s love
Who died to set me free
It tells me of His precious blood
The sinner’s perfect plea

Oh how I love Jesus
Oh how I love Jesus
Oh how I love Jesus
Because He first loved me

Message – Verbalizing Fear and Joy (13 Slides)

It has occurred to me recently that the resurrection accounts, and actually all four gospels, share a common problem. A Mary Problem. A problem for Jesus, a problem for the disciples, a problem for the institutional religious leaders, a problem for the Roman occupiers. Just a problem. A problem that in itself will become the solution.

Jesus had a Mary problem throughout his ministry. His Mary insisted that he prevent a wine catastrophe even though it was too early for him to be so public. His Mary problem forced him to step into he human experience of deep grief even though he needed to preform a miracle. His Mary was too pushy in her advocacy for her sons, his Mary was too messy and sinful. This Mary collective was a constant wild card usually appearing in times unsuitable for a Mary problem.  Jesus’ Mary problem began to prepare him for burial in a very public manner at a moment when such a public display was deemed inappropriate inviting his foes to begin their assault. The religious leaders Mary problem continued to disrupt their plans even when following Jesus became unpopular, ridiculous, and dangerous. Surprisingly, especially for those who expected the followers to quit following after Jesus was crucified, the Mary problem only increased, the women passionately continued to search and listen for Jesus even though his dead body could not be found.

However, Jesus was fully aware that his Mary problem would ultimately be God’s solution to bring truth to the hurting and hiding followers of Jesus in their moment of hopelessness and doom. It was a time when the death of the Messiah came with much collateral death – the death of Jesus was accompanied by the death of hope, the death of Jesus was accompanied by the death of dreams, the death of Jesus was accompanied by the death of promise, the death of Jesus was accompanied by the death of eternity, the death of Jesus was accompanied by the death of life.

The religious leaders identified Jesus as the source of their problems – their solution was to get rid of Jesus which would get rid of Jesus’ followers and then,  this entire Jesus problem would just be a bad memory. They leaders failed to predict a Mary problem, their plan held no contingency for a Mary problem. The foes of Jesus never imagined a group of Jesus followers, particularly female followers, would refuse to give up on Jesus – the thought was unimaginable especially after Jesus had been so publicly and brutally crucified. Regardless, the Marys would become the paramount problem for the foes of Jesus. These established religious leaders had meticulously and strategically devised their plan to end their Jesus’ problem but they didn’t see what God had awaiting. It was easy enough to manipulate the Romans to arrest and nail Jesus to the cross, they had only to appeal to the politicians fear of losing political standing, to their egos that needed a a constant diet of power, affirmations , and acclaim. The crowds who had been the robust and public supporters of Jesus just days ago were also easy to redirect – just plant some ridiculous rumors in the right minds, or scare them with a fear of personal hardship and they would be easy to turn them into an angry mob seeking Jesus’ death. Sadly, just like today, few sought out truth, they continued to believe the false rumors and conspiracies, they continued to pass those lies and deceit on to others as if they were known and proven fact. But, the truth was, also much like today, truth had been become less and less valued – truth is  that truth in 2022 has also become as worthless as it was to the mobs that scrammed for the death of Jesus. Even more tragic is that Christians have taken a place at the front of the line in allowing truth to be ignored and devalued.

The religious leaders watched as the body of Jesus was taken down from the cross, they patted each other on the back. “Good job everyone,” they proclaimed to each other, “that was a bit messy but we did it, we got rid of Jesus.”

However, it at that very moment, one of their very own, one who had begun the risky search for truth, Joseph from Arimathea, a religious leader, could no longer affirm the deceit, he could no longer ignore the truth. God led Joseph to risk his position, passion, and livelihood in taking actions that were counter to his contemporaries. Actions that served to  empower the Marys to continue following Jesus. The body was taken to a grave donated by Joseph, and in turn, Joseph made it possible for the Marys to return to being Marys. 

Matthew’s resurrection account bring new elements to the resurrection story that are yet unseen – armed Romans guards watching over the tomb and a two earthquakes. The justifiable fear of the religious leaders was that the body might be taken, a dead body could be a concrete rallying cry to the followers of Jesus. Again, it was easy to convince the Roman politicians that guards were needed. 

So now, in addition to the huge stone blocking the entrance to the tomb, the women were going to face the powerful guards, whose sole job was to keep the women out. The Marys went to the tomb anyway, they were propelled by their faith, a faith that still led them to Jesus, to truth.

[Slide] In the Greek, we see the undeterred Marys journey  to the tomb for the purpose of ‘theoresai’: to see the tomb where Jesus laid, to look at the body and remember the life, to consider the impact of the absence in death, to contemplate this new stage of faith. They arrived at the grave in time to witness an angel and an earthquake solve their stone and guard dilemma. The stone was moved and the guards remained too terrified to prevent the women from approaching the tomb. Matthew’s messenger, who was  much more Hollywood than the messengers presented by Mark and John, explained to the women,

[Slide] “Do not be afraid; I know that you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for he has been resurrected, just as he said he would be.” 

[Slide] “Come, see the place where he was laid. Then go quickly and tell his followers, He has been resurrected from the dead, and indeed he is going ahead of you to Galilee; there you will see him.”

[Slide] A message.

[Slide] A message from the resurrected Christ.

[Slide] A message of passion as Jesus continued his mission.

[Slide] A message of eternal hope and eternal peace.

[Slide] A message of the deliverance.

[Slide] A message calling the women to be the messengers of the truth.

[Slide] “So the women, and the Marys, left the tomb quickly with fear and great joy, and ran to verbalize their fear and joy to Jesus’ followers.” 

[Slide] On the way, the Marys are surprised to encounter into Jesus. Why was he not on his way to Galilee? Had he delayed his journey because he intrinsically needed to embrace his followers? Did he need their affirmation? Did Jesus recognize these new messengers need for reassurance and presence as they went to verbalize their fear and their joy?

[Slide] They took hold of Jesus’ feet, and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid; now, go and tell my followers to go to Galilee.

[Slide] A calling that paired their fear with their personal experience, and their joy with their defined purpose.

Once again, the Marys ran to the other followers but now with an added ordination to preach the truth, an ordination from Jesus himself to testify of what they, and only they, had seen.

The religious leaders attempted to manage the backlash from the politicians – they used a technique that, sadly, religious leaders and religious groups, politicians, political parties, political pundits, and many others have found to be highly effective – lies, deceit, manipulating truth, swearing by credibly unfounded and outlandish rumors, invalidated conspiracies, along with false testimonies, unholy alliances. UnChristlike maneuvering that would easily achieve a wicked and unGodly goal.

“Do not be afraid;” Jesus said, “go and tell the others to go to Galilee; there they will see me.”

Theologian Scholar Elisabeth Johnson, leave us with the challenge, 

“What do we make of all these details that are unique to Matthew’s story? The earth-shaking news of the resurrection is unsettling, even frightening; it shatters all our human attempts at security and jolts us into the unfamiliar territory of God’s new creation. In Jesus, the reign of God breaks open everything that seemed fixed and immovable — even death and stone-cold tombs. Yet for all the impressive special effects of this resurrection story, the resurrection is not merely an exercise of power on God’s part. It is that, but more importantly, it is an act of love. It is an act of love on the part of God, who will not abandon Jesus to the grave, and will not abandon us to sin and death and despair. It is an act of love on the part of God, who took on the worst of our violence and brutality and refused to respond in kind. Instead God responded with an act that made all things new. No wall of stone is large enough to keep Jesus in the tomb. So it is with the life-giving power and love of God. No show of force, no contingent of guards or security police can stop it. No ungodly maneuvering of religious leaders can halt the resurrection. The resurrection is an earth-shaking, unsettling event. But as Jesus himself tells us, we need not be afraid. The One who shakes the earth with the resurrection is the One who holds our future, who promises to meet us and to be with us, even to the end of the age.”

Elisabeth Johnson, Professor, Lutheran Institute of Theology, Meiganga, Cameroon

Let’s PrayResponse – Verbal Congregational Response (6 slides)

Leader: Death is a part of life, a part of this life. Death was not the intention of God, but it was the chosen path of humans. Death is not the enemy, death is not the end, death is not darkness.

Response: May we not let our hearts be troubled. May we continue to believe in God, to believe in Jesus.

Leaders: When the foes of God thought they had stopped the ministry of Jesus, they still found themselves afraid and fearful. Something inside them revealed them that the followers of Jesus would not be dissuaded.

Response:  May we still bring spices to the tomb, may we seek to anoint the body of Jesus.

Leader: A huge stone and a contingent of guards were awaiting anyone trying to see Jesus.

Response: The stone was rolled away, the guards were standing in stunned silence, nothing could prevent the followers.

Leader: Death stifles God’s natural rhythms of love and life. Death attempts to distract us turning us into obstacles working against Jesus’ prayer ‘Thy Kingdom come.’ 

Response: God does not deliver me into the hand of the enemy; God has set my feet on a broad place.

Leader: We live in in the tension between death and life, between the cross and the empty tomb, between fear and joy.

Response: May we navigate fear and joy empowered by our trust in God.

Leader: May we wait even when we see nothing. May we be unhindered by nothingness. May hope prevail even when hope seems very far away.

Response: May we remain to seek, may we listen to hear, may we hold to the author of truth and love.

Response – Music 3 (7  slides) 

Revelation Song

CCLI Song # 4447960

Jennie Lee Riddle

Verse 1

Worthy is the Lamb Who was slain
Holy holy is He
Sing a new song to Him Who sits on
Heaven’s mercy seat

Chorus

Holy holy holy
Is the Lord God Almighty
Who was and is and is to come

With all creation I sing
Praise to the King of kings
You are my ev’rything
And I will adore You

Verse 2

Clothed in rainbows of living color
Flashes of lightning rolls of thunder
Blessing and honor strength and glory
And power be to You the only wise King

Verse 3

Filled with wonder awestruck wonder
At the mention of Your name
Jesus Your name is power breath and living water
Such a marv’lous mystery

Chorus

Holy holy holy
Is the Lord God Almighty
Who was and is and is to come

With all creation I sing
Praise to the King of kings
You are my ev’rything
And I will adore You

Community (3 Slides)

  • Next Sunday, May 8 – Handed Over, Luke 24:1-12
  • Engagement drop by this afternoon
  • Pray Peace. Prayers for Ukraine – donation link at GFNorman.com

Peace (3 Slides)

As you leave this place, may the peace of the Lord, go with you.

And also with you.

We gather here because of God’s love for us, we go from here because of God’s love for everyone out there. Go in the peace of the Lord.

Published by rickanthony1993

Husband of Andrea, Father of five, pastor of Grace Fellowship Norman OK.

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