Order, Words, & Voices 10.02.22

Order, Words, & Voices

10.02.22 Collaborative Faith


Pre Worship Music

Opening Songs: How Great Thou Art Christian

Lord I Need You

Call to Worship Steve M.

Song: Breathe of Me Breath of God Christian

Reading Judges 4:1-7 On Line – Mitch & Duffy

Message Collaborative Faith Rick

Song: What A Friend We Have In Jesus Christian

Closing Peace Rick

Benediction Rick

Post Worship Music

Words and Voices

Music (11 Slides)

How Great Thou Art

O Lord my God

When I in awesome wonder

Consider all the worlds

Thy hands have made

I see the stars

I hear the rolling thunder

Thy pow’r thru’out

The universe displayed

Then sings my soul

My Savior God to Thee

How great Thou art

How great Thou art

Then sings my soul

My Savior God to Thee

How great Thou art

How great Thou art

And when I think

That God His Son not sparing

Sent Him to die

I scarce can take it in

That on the cross

My burden gladly bearing

He bled and died

To take away my sin

Then sings my soul

My Savior God to Thee

How great Thou art

How great Thou art

Then sings my soul

My Savior God to Thee

How great Thou art

How great Thou art

When Christ shall come

With shout of acclamation

And take me home

What joy shall fill my heart

Then I shall bow

In humble adoration

And there proclaim

My God how great Thou art

Then sings my soul

My Savior God to Thee

How great Thou art

How great Thou art

Then sings my soul

My Savior God to Thee

How great Thou art

How great Thou art

Lord I Need You

Lord I come I confess

Bowing here I find my rest

And without You I fall apart

You’re the one that guides my heart

Lord I need You oh I need You

Ev’ry hour I need You

My one defense my righteousness

Oh God how I need You

Where sin runs deep 

Your grace is more

Where grace is found is 

where You are

And where You are Lord I am free

Holiness is Christ in me

Where You are Lord I am free

Holiness is Christ in me

Lord I need You oh I need You

Ev’ry hour I need You

My one defense my righteousness

Oh God how I need You

Lord I need You oh I need You

Ev’ry hour I need You

My one defense my righteousness

Oh God how I need You

My one defense my righteousness

Oh God how I need You

Call To Worship/Lord’s Prayer [Slides at Prayer]

The first four of the ten commandments concentrate on our worship of the one true God.  ‘You shall have no gods before the one true God’. ‘You shall have no idols to the false gods’. ‘You shall not abuse the name of God’. And the fourth is, You shall “Remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work. But the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God… The Lord has blessed the Sabbath day and consecrated it.”

Twentieth century German theologian Karl Barth calls the corporate observance of the Sabbath Law, and the Sabbath day itself, an ‘Interruption’. 

A call on us to limit our work, to not allow it to be our identity. A day of humble submission and respect directed to God. An opportunity to turn from thoughts of our work and achievements and instead to recognize the heart and meaning of God’s work. An intentional and deliberate day, a moment, for us to reflect individually as well as cooperatively on God and His work. A contemplative deliberation of our own salvation. The call challenges us to a consistent recurring interruption of our work with a Sabbath. A holy interruption giving us a holy day every week – allowing us to then see the holy in every day of the week. (Karl Barth, paraphrase)

Today, we gather for this interruption to the daily routines of life. This morning, we gather for this moment of interruption, we set aside those things that demand our attention, and instead, we consider the heart and meaning of God and God’s holy work. Today, we rest, we pause, we reflect. While every other moment of our lives may seem to be absorbed, in this moment, in this interruption, our attention is on God.

May we now fous ourselves in this interruption with the prayer of Jesus, please stand and join together with me.

[Slides Begin] Our Father who art in Heaven, hallowed be thy name.

Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done, On Earth as it is in Heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread.

Forgive us our trespasses, while we forgive those who trespass against us.

And God, lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.

For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.

‘Please be seated.’

Music (3 Slides)

Breath on Me Breathe of God

Breathe on me breath of God

Fill me with life anew

That I may love what Thou dost love

And do what Thou wouldst do

Breathe on me breath of God

Until my heart is pure

Until with Thee I will one will

To do and to endure

Breathe on me breath of God

Till I am wholly Thine

Till all this earthly part of me

Glows with Thy fire divine

Reading [No Slides]

Once again, the Israelites did what was evil in the sight of the Lord. So the Lord gave them into the hand of King Jabin of Canaan, and Sisera, the commander of Jaban’s army. Soon, the Israelites cried out to the Lord for help, for Sisera had oppressed the Israelites cruelly for twenty years.

At that time Deborah was judging Israel. She used to sit under the palm of Deborah in the hill country of Ephraim, where the Israelites came up to her for judgment. 

Deborah summoned Barak, the leader of the Israelite’s army and said to him, “The Lord, the God of Israel, commands you, ‘Position yourself at Mount Tabor, taking ten thousand from the tribes of Naphtali and Zebulun. I will draw out Sisera to meet you with his chariots and his troops, and I will give him into your hand.’ ” 

Barak said to Deborah, “If you will go with me, I will go, but if you will not go with me, I will not go.” Deborah said, “I will surely go with you; nevertheless, the road on which you are going will not lead to your glory, for the Lord will sell Sisera into the hand of a woman.” Then Deborah got up and went with Barak and his warriors.

When Sisera called out all his chariots, nine hundred chariots of iron, and all the troops who were with him. Deborah said to Barak, “Get Up! For this is the day the Lord has given Sisera into your hand. The has Lord gone out before you.” 

So Barak went with ten thousand warriors following him. And the Lord threw Sisera and all his chariots and all his army into a panic before Barak; Sisera got down from his chariot and ran away. All the army of Sisera fell by the sword; not one was left.

Sisera fled to the tent of the woman Jael who came out to meet him saying, “Come in to me; have no fear.” So Sisera went into her tent, and she covered him with a rug. Sisera said to her, “Stand at the entrance of the tent, and if anybody comes and asks you if anyone is here say, ‘No.’ ”But Jael wife of Heber took a tent peg and a hammer and, going softly to Sisera who had fallen asleep from weariness, Jael drove the peg into Sisera’s temple, until it went down into the ground and he died.” 

Judges 4:1-21

Message – Collaborative Faith [6 Slides]

Judges 4:1-7

After the Babylonian exile, and the return to the promised land, the name ‘Jew’ became the accepted name for the people who had been set apart by God. A promised people who traced their ancestry back to Abraham and the promise given to him by God. 

A name is a significant label, it is usually given to us without our input – we grow into it or we spend our lives attempting to prove it wrong. Rapper Kanye West recently changed his name to Ye. Musician Prince, at one time, changed his name to a symbol which could not really be voiced, so people began referring to him as ‘The artist formerly known as Prince.’ 

The promised people began with the name ‘son of Abraham’, then they became the ‘sons of Isaac’, then, the ‘sons of Jacob.’ Then, they were welcomed to Egypt as the ‘Hebrews’ – a name most likely derived from the Hebrew words ‘eber’ or ‘ever’ meaning‘ ones who crossed over’. ‘Crossed over’ conceivably referring to Abraham’s journey across to Canaan and his descendents journey from Canaan crossing over the Euphrates River into Egypt. This name was just a name until it became a derogatory slam as the Hebrews transitioned from welcomed guests to despised and enslaved foreigners. These Hebrews, however, labeled themselves ‘Israelites’, named after their ancestor Jacob, who God had renamed Israel.

And so in today’s passage, the Isrealites, were living between their deliverance from slavery in Egypt and their eventual slavery in Babylon. During which time they learned about the God of whom they knew little about. They learned, they followed, they disobeyed, they rejected, they were corrected, they cried out to God, they were delivered, they experienced peace, then they did it all over again, and again. 

Moses, followed by Joshua, consistently instructed the people to Obey the Torah, the Law of God. The people did, but mostly they did not. They entered the promised land and soon failed to do what God told them to do which was to wipe out all the residents of Canaan, the promised land. This sounds harsh but the reason was – the Canaanites were evil and the Israelties were weak. God knew that if they were absorbed by the Cannaanites, or if the Isrealites aborbed the Canaanites, the Isrealites would eventually adopt and incorporate the practices of the Canaanites – life practices that were morally corrupt and religious practices that included child sacrifice. The Israelites did not remove the Canaanites and therefore, as God knew they would do, they became like the Canaanites – meaning – you usually could not tell the two peoples apart. 

So, after the death of their leader Josua, God gave the Isrealites the Judges. Not like a courtroom judge but more like a regional military mafia thug leader, leaders who were as evil, if not worse, than the Canaanites. It was a brutal time for the Canaanites and for the Isrealites – largely because of these Judges. These Judges were all ultimately horrible except for the one female of the bunch – a judge named Deborah.

This one bright spot in the book of Judges is Deborah who is full of faith in the God of the Isrealites and gifted with power from God of the Isrealites. As the Canaanites were unifying together to wipe the Isreaites from the land of Canaan Deborah called on the military leader Barak to give him God’s instruction for the battle against the invading Canaanite army. It was a simple plan that was enough, it detailed the pre-organization required of Balak as well as the work that God would do and the victory that God would give to Balak. Balak accepted the call on one condition, the condition that Deborah would join Balak on the battlefield. Deborah agrees but cautions Barak that, if she does go with him, he will not be the proclaimed hero. The hero would instead be a woman.

It is a story that puts a spotlight on the different perspectives as well as the different expectations that bring us to an understanding, or misunderstanding, of the story.  You have probably heard this story taught or preached in a way that sets Balak up to be a:

  • A coward
  • A misogynist
  • Basically,  self absorbed prideful arrogant wimp

Why else would Deborah have to bait him to accept God’s call? The only way to overcome his cowardice would be to appeal to his vanity. The only way to create in him a reason to go to battle would be to keep a woman from being glorified. Essentially, Deborah had to take this shell of a human being and convince him to trust God by appealing to his ego and his male arrogance.

What if that is not an accurate understanding of Barak and Deborah? What if this is more a story of two people who understand faith, and especially understand the value of the collaboration of their mutual faith? What if Barak understood that faith is holy when it is vested in the true God, and holyer when it is multiplied by a combined alliance of others of that shared faith.

What if Deborah’s motivation was not to goad Balak into accepting God’s call but to test it? What if she wanted to make sure this was not all about an egomaniac who would eventually use this victory to gain more power for himself? What if she wanted to see if he was willing to follow as well as to lead? What if she needed to know he understood that leading armies into battle would still require following the God of the Victory in the Battle?

What if both of these individuals understood Proverb 27:17 long before the writer of Proverbs was even born? What if they both grasped the idea of Iron Sharpening Iron? What if both knew that they were the iron that needed sharpening?

What if…?

Long before a team of experts engineered the iPhone, Steve Jobs had an idea of a phone unlike all other phones. He also recognized that he needed others to make his idea a reality.

Long before Christians had multiple Bibles scattered on shelves and in drawers throughout their house, a team of past and present collaborators worked with Johann Gutenberg to make God’s Word available to the average believer.

Long before we were able to sit in a dentist chair and have a quick Xray of our teeth, Pierre Curie shoveled back breaking mounds of earth to assist his wife Marie in discovering the radioactive element radium.

[Slide] “Two are better than one because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up the other, but woe to one who is alone and falls and does not have another to help. 

[Slide] Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? And though one might prevail against another, two will withstand one. A threefold cord is not quickly broken.” (Ecc. 4:9-12)

[Slide] “If, then, there is any comfort in Christ, any consolation from love, any partnership in the Spirit, any tender affection and sympathy, make my joy complete: be of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. 

[Slide] Do nothing from selfish ambition or empty conceit, but in humility regard others as better than yourselves. Let each of you look not to your own interests but to the interests of others. 

[Slide] Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus, who, though he existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be grasped, but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, assuming human likeness. 

[Slide] And being found in appearance as a human, he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death— even death on a cross.” (Philippians 2:1-8)

So let’s step back to that name, for Deborah and Barak and the ten thousand man army, the name was Israelite. This name was not just their bond, it was not just their nationality, rather, it was the defining mark of their faith, a faith now reinforced with ten thousand and two Isrealites. An army glued together by a shared faith, and a faith given by a name, a name based on their common ancestor Jacob, an army about to face the army of Sisera. That opposing army, led by Sisera, is estimated by ancient Jewish historian Josephus, to have amounted to 900 chariots, 40,000 generals, and possibly upwards of 4 billion soldiers, dwarfing the 10,002 Isrealites now ready for battle. They shared a common faith built on a common God, identified by a common name, strengthened by a common trust – a trust in and a trust on the God of their name – Jacob’s God. The God of promise. There was sheer power in the armies of Sisera, but there was more power in the army of the God of Balak, of Deborah, and of their much smaller armies. This power, a faith collaborated among this small gigantic group that would never need to use their swords because the God they trusted had gone before them. 

We boast in our armies until we face the full force of our battle

We trust in our house until we see the fortress of our foe

We hold to our knives until we feel the sting of their swords

We crouch securely in the cave until we hear the boots of our attacker

And yet, 

We know a strength when we stand together

We experience a peace when our trust is shared

We identify by the one who has gone before us

We hold to hope of the promise repeatedly assured

And so we commit,

To hold on tight to the one who is faithful

To affirm our faith in our mutual redeemer

To strengthen our stance in our collaborated trust

To grasp the reality even when it is invisible to our sight


We do not go alone into darkness without the foreknowledge of light

We do not go together armed only with human might

We know that our hope rests in the creator almighty

We know in our very core lives the God who is power, justice, and love

Let’s Pray.

Music  [3 Slides]

What A Friend We Have In Jesus

What a friend we have in Jesus

All our sins and griefs to bear

What a privilege to carry

Everything to God in prayer

O what peace we often forfeit

O what needless pain we bear

All because we do not carry

Everything to God in prayer

Blessed Savior Thou hast promised

Thou wilt all our burdens bear

May we ever Lord be bringing

All to Thee in earnest prayer

Soon in glory bright unclouded

There will be no need for prayer

Honor praise and endless worship

Will be our sweet portion there

Community [Slides]

  • [Slide] Next Sunday, Guest Speaker Randy Ridenour, Professor of Philosphy at Oklahoma Baptist University
  • [Slide]  Fall Bible Study – Beginning this Wednesday, October 5 (5 weeks)
  • [Slide] Cleveland County Crop Walk, Sunday October 16 @ 1:30pm, locally and globally, Food and Shelter has doubled it number of clients served by 100% since Covid hit (numbers have not gone down)

Closing Peace [Slide]

May the Peace of the Lord go with you. And also with you.

Benediction [Slide]

“Depart now in the fellowship of God the Father and as you go, remember: By the goodness of God you were born into this world. And by the grace of God you have been kept even until this very hour. And by the love of God, fully revealed in the face of Jesus, you have been redeemed even as you are being redeemed. So go in peace.”

Published by rickanthony1993

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

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