• Rossendale Circuit

Come and See - Sunday Service 17.01.21

with Revd. David Burrow

Video Service

Watch on youtube here.

Part 1

Hymns & Songs:

MP 50 'Be still, for the presence of the Lord'



MP 266 'I cannot tell why he whom angels worship'


Part 2

Hymns & Songs:

MP 857 'I the Lord of sea and sky'


Song: 'Will you come and follow me'


Part 3

Hymns & Songs:

MP 86 'Come and see the shining hope'


no lyrics but very upbeat!


MP 708 'To God be the Glory'



*Not always exact to the videos

Rossendale Methodist Circuit Worship 17th January 2021 Revd David Burrow

John 1:43-51 – ‘Come and See’

Opening prayer:

Lord, you know me better than I know myself.

Lord, you loved me before I knew what love was.

Lord, you called me before I left my mother’s womb.

Lord, show me your way, make yourself known in your word.

Make your ways known to me, Lord; teach me your paths. (Psalm 25:4). Amen.

Now I invite you to be still.

To let go of the past and forget about the future, nd just be wherever you are. Just for a minute or two, right now; listen to the sounds around you, inside and outside – and let them fade into the background.

Breathe slowly and centre your scattered senses upon the presence of God . . . .

[Hold a moment of silence]

Loving God, in the stillness, in my moments of self-doubt and self-pity, I know you close to me – by some mystery.

As I confess my sin today come close, forgive and accept me by your grace (take a moment to confess your sin; now receive God’s forgiveness and enjoy his love).

Jesus says, “Your sins are forgiven, go in peace and sin no more.”

Thank you, heavenly Father, for your gifts of forgiveness and the joy and light of your love; fill me again I pray, with the power of your Holy Spirit, cleanse me and make me new. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

The Lord’s Prayer

MP 50 'Be still, for the presence of the Lord'



MP 266 'I cannot tell why he whom angels worship'


Read John 1:43-51

Allow me to invite you to cast your minds back, not very far, to Christmas.

What were we celebrating?

The birth of a special baby? Certainly! – But much more than that!

We celebrated the birth of a new people, no less than the children of God.

A family where every person is of equal value and a family to which Jesus wants everyone to belong. And in order to belong we need to meet with Jesus . . . . so . . . .

“Come and see”. The words of Philip to Nathanael.

‘Come & see is an invitation to share an experience.

I’m sure you’ve invited others to share something you are enjoying.

“Come and see this beautiful sunset”. “In a minute. Just let me finish this”. “Oh, you’ve missed it!’

The desire to share is powerful.

I discovered many years ago that one of the unforeseen challenges of travelling alone around the world is when you get home there is no-one who shared the experience, so instead of being able to say, “Do you remember when . . .” everyone gets fed up with me saying, “When I was in . . .” I can only say, ‘Come and see my photos’ – which people graciously do but after the first 50 they soon begin to glaze over.

Back to Philip. He is one of my heroes.

If you’d met him, you may have thought that he wasn’t really the kind of material that top apostles are made of. Why?

Because if you look at the other places where he’s mentioned in John, he seems to lack confidence.

In John 6:1-14 at the feeding of the 5000, Jesus asked Philip to feed the crowd.

Philip wasn’t falling for that one and told Jesus that eight months wages wasn’t enough to do the job!

In John 12:20-22 some Greeks wanted to see Jesus, so they approached Philip and, instead of taking them to Jesus Philip asked Andrew’s opinion first.

And in John 14:8 Jesus got a little exasperated with Philip when Philip asked, “Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.”

Jesus replied, “Don’t you know me Philip, anyone who has seen me has seen the Father.”

Yet in spite of all this we read how Jesus found Philip.

No reasons are given, no explanation of how Jesus knew Philip or where to find him.

We are just told Jesus found him and called him.

And that’s encouraging; Jesus went out of his way, to Galilee, to find this perfectly ordinary man.

Some of the apostles were men of great ability, but Philip shows us that most were ordinary people, and the wonderful truth is: Christ had and has use for such followers.

So, Philip was enlisted, & what did he do?

He went off to tell someone else, to find his friend Nathaniel.

One lighted candle was used to light another.

Philip truly believed Jesus was the Messiah, the one spoken about by Moses and the prophets, but Nathaniel was having none of it, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” he asked.

Nazareth must have had a dodgy postcode!

I’m sure you know places like that!

Now, Philip could have argued the case for Nazareth, “It’s okay, every place has good and bad in it”. But he didn’t, he just gave Nathaniel a simple invitation: ‘Come and see’.

It was an enthusiastic invitation, to come and check Jesus out for himself.

Dean Inge (St. Paul’s Cathedral 1911-1934), said, ‘Faith begins as an experiment and ends as experience’. How wonderfully true.

Photo by Bud Helisson via Unsplash

‘Come & See’ is a simple invitation and it’s one you and I can offer to family and friends and the beauty of it is: it’s not an invitation to believe in something straight away; neither is it an invitation to big commitment.

It’s an invitation to try something out.

It’s a gentle approach that allows people to go at their own speed.

It’s an approach that starts with Philip’s friendship with Nathaniel or your friendship with . . . . . . . . fill in the gap with the name of one of your friends.

Thanks to their friendship, Nathanael trusted Philip enough to accept his invitation and Nathanael finished up making one of the earliest and most wonderful declarations of faith in Jesus: “Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!”

Jesus called Philip, Philip called Nathaniel, Jesus called me, and I called . . . . . . to ‘Come and see’.

‘Come and see’ is an invitation to experience a relationship with Jesus, with God.

God knows everything about us, even how many hairs we have on our heads. But what do we know of God?

God calls us so that we can get to know him better, just as Jesus called Nathanael so that Nathanael could get to know Jesus.

One of my favourite stories in the Bible is the story of God walking in the Garden of Eden with Adam and Eve in the cool of the evening – what a wonderful way to get to know each other – to walk together.

I wonder if you have read C.S. Lewis’ Narnia series?

In the final chapter of the series, Aslan the lion, who represents Jesus, offers an invitation to the characters as they enter heaven: ‘come further up and come further in’ he says. They are invited further and further into the love of God, and so are we.

Aslan’s invitation, like Philip’s invitation to Nathanael, echoes God’s invitation to each one of us.

Having accepted God’s invitation to a relationship with him in Jesus we are, I hope, ready to extend the invitation to others. To say to them, ‘Come and see’.

It sounds simple but there is a challenge. It’s not quite as straight forward as Philip’s invitation to ‘Come and see’ Jesus. After all, Philip was taking Nathanael to meet Jesus in the flesh. What happened next was down to Jesus.

Our first invitation to others to ‘Come and see’ is often to church, be that to worship, a drop in, or a social event. The invitation is to meet God’s family.

What will be the experience of people we invite to ‘Come and see’?

Will they experience something exciting and creative?

Will they meet a people who are loving and welcoming to everybody?

Will they see Jesus in the people?

And will they be given freedom and space to discover what it’s all about for themselves without being asked to take on a job?

Will they see the God’s family in action?

I think they will. Why?

Because our invitation to ‘Come and see’ is actually better than Philip’s. How?

Because it’s not only an invitation to meet God’s family; it’s an invitation to meet with the crucified and risen Jesus and be filled with the Holy Spirit.

‘Come and see’ is a personal invitation to a one-to-one relationship with Jesus lived in the power of the Holy Spirit.

It’s an invitation to become a child of God! (John 1:12) To come further up and further in!

During this lockdown seize the opportunity to pray for your family members and friends who don’t yet know Jesus.

Bring them into his presence daily in your prayers and ask God to prepare their hearts and minds so that when we get back to meeting together, they will be ready to respond with enthusiasm to your invitation to, Come and see!

If you want to join me after our next sing, I will be offering some prayers and using a mirror and a candle.

MP 857 'I the Lord of sea and sky'


Song: 'Will you come and follow me'


Prayers of intercession

Someone once said that there are two ways of shedding light: to be the light or the mirror that reflects it. As Christians we are expected to be both.

Jesus said, “I am the Light of the world” in John 8:12, but he also said, in Matthew 5:14, “You are the light of the world” and in verse 16, “let your light shine before others so that they can see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven”.

So, to symbolise this truth we have a candle and a mirror.

[Feel free to put me on pause if you too wish to light a candle and place a mirror beside it, so that it reflects the candle flame.]

Creator God, we come into your holy presence and give you our full attention.

We praise you for your greatness, your awesome power, your majesty and beauty that we see mirrored in the world around us.

We treasure each opportunity to discover more of you in times of prayer.

May your light illuminate our lives.

Jesus, Son of God, Light of the world, you greet us as you did Nathanael, as one who is intimately known by you. For you know our names, our personalities, our potential for good and for evil.

We long to reflect your light in our lives. Give us ears to always hear your call, and as we praise you for your words of forgiveness, comfort and challenge to us, empower us by your Spirit to offer these gifts to all who are in need. We bring into the light of your presence all who are suffering from Covid-19 and those who, suffering from other illnesses, have had treatments and operations postponed.

May your light in us, reveal your comfort and love.

Holy Spirit of God, you urge us to share our faith with others, through acts of kindness, words of truth, and commitment to your call.

Please show us where there is particular need in our local community, and help us to respond with love and generosity, sensitivity and wisdom, courage and perseverance.

May your light in your people flood our communities.

Loving God, the world is crying out for justice, renewal and peace.

We call to mind those parts of the world that are in pain and offer them into your loving care in particular Yemen and the United States of America.

May your light overcome the darkness and bring peace and wholeness.

Show us how to reflect your message of truth, hope and love in all creation.

And we pray, give us the courage to invite others to ‘Come and see’.

In the name of Christ, we pray. Amen.


You have called me to worship, O God, and now you call me out, you call me on, you call me forwards. As I go into the day, O God, I know your Spirit goes before me. Guide me, by that Spirit, to know your voice when you call, to follow in your way, and to bring your Kingdom closer, today. Amen

MP 86 'Come and see the shining hope'


no lyrics but very upbeat!


MP 708 'To God be the Glory'


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