• Rossendale Circuit

Sunday Service With Videos - Pentecost - 31st of May

Words by David Burrow


“Hope without help is an orphan.”


Video Service:


Scroll down to view the written service and if you'd like to go straight to Youtube click here.


Part 1:



Hymns:


MP 691 This is the day that the Lord has made

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TXZwW0D2OZ4

or


MP 274 I hear the sound of rustling

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n2rSway6Cgc



Part 2:



Hymns:



MP 50 Be still, for the presence of the Lord

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZugvUQ4m90U



Part 3:



Hymns:


MP 525 O thou who camest from above https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PfDJL2CGQ9w



Part 4:



Hymns:


MP 59 Blessed assurance https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yuyf1YQvcwY


MP 821 Down the mountain https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XW3ILo1U9Lw



50 countries sing 'Amazing Grace' https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BA7pdABvpnc




Written Service



“Hope without help is an orphan.”


Today is Pentecost! A day of celebration as we give thanks to God for the gift of his Holy Spirit. About 800 years before Jesus was born the prophet Joel spoke of how, one day, God would bless his people:


‘The Lord says: I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophecy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions. Even on my servants, both men and women. I will pour out my Spirit in those days. Then everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.’

Holy Spirit, the world is still full of noise. Fill us with your peace.

Some of us live in busy homes, while others are isolated and lonely. Fill us with your peace.

Some of us are busy working, while others are bored. Fill us with your peace.

So, we come to meet with you, to listen and to learn. Fill us with your peace.


Amen.


MP 691 This is the day that the Lord has made

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TXZwW0D2OZ4


MP 274 I hear the sound of rustling

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n2rSway6Cgc


Prayer of Invocation:


We pray to God the Holy Spirit, saying: Holy Spirit, come upon us

Come, Holy Spirit, creator and renew the earth: Holy Spirit, come upon us

Come, Holy Spirit, counsellor; touch our lips that we may proclaim your word: Holy Spirit, come upon us

Come, Holy Spirit, power from on high; make us channels of peace and ministers of healing: Holy Spirit, come upon us

Come, Holy Spirit, breath of God, give life to dry bones, and make us a living people, holy and free: Holy Spirit, come upon us

Come, Holy Spirit, wisdom and truth; strengthen us in our faith: Holy Spirit, come upon us


Prayer of Confession:


Gracious and holy God, we confess that we have sinned against you and against our neighbour.

Your Spirit gives light, but we have preferred darkness;

your Spirit gives wisdom, but we have been foolish; your Spirit gives power, but we have trusted in our own strength. For the sake of Jesus Christ, your Son, forgive our sins, and enable us by your Spirit to serve you in joyful obedience, to the glory of your Name.

Amen.


Assurance of sins forgiven:


There is now no condemnation for those who live in union with Christ Jesus; for the law of the Spirit of life has set us free from the law of sin and death. Amen. Thanks be to God.


Read: John 14:15-21. Jesus promises the Holy Spirit, “I will not leave you orphaned”.

Some years ago, on holiday in Anglesey, I worshipped at the local Church of Wales. The preacher, a lovely gentle woman who spoke with great authority, preached on the theme of Jesus’ promise not to leave the disciples as orphans as he promised to send them the Holy Spirit.

Photo by Joshua Sortino via Unsplash


“Hope without help is an orphan,” she said. I wonder what your hopes are for the end of the lock down and beyond. Do you, like me, need help to fulfil your hopes?

When the disciples saw Jesus ascend to heaven, they returned to Jerusalem full of joy and hope because they knew that Jesus would fulfil his promise; they would not be left as orphans. Their hope was fulfilled as they were filled with God’s presence and power. Their lives glorified God as the Holy Spirit gave them the words to proclaim. And the world, gathered in Jerusalem, began to be turned the right side up.


MP 50 Be still, for the presence of the Lord

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZugvUQ4m90U


Read: Acts 2:1-21 The promise fulfilled


Half the Roman Empire was represented in the crowd, from what is now Muslim Asia to the City of Rome, eyes and ears were present from every land, minds trying to grasp the meaning of the storm exploding in front of them. Here was something to take back to the deserts of the Middle East, the islands of the Aegean Sea, the farmlands of Turkey, like a flame to carry around the known world, then and still today. All these people drawn into one place, at one spirit-giving moment to experience a revelation and a revolution. They listened and believed. They confessed their sin, were baptised, embraced by, and filled with the power of the Spirit and became children of God. They were no longer orphans. And from Jerusalem the good news of Jesus spiralled out to where those people had come from and ultimately, down through the years, to the ends of the earth. Now that’s a very big picture, the whole earth.


And just as the message of Jesus spiralled outwards from Jerusalem, so the message of Jesus spirals inwards and orphans become children of God as the gift of the good news of God’s amazing love reaches deep down into us, transforming us and empowering us to play our part in the sharing of the message and transforming the world.


It wouldn’t feel right to keep from others the compassion and mercy, the grace, forgiveness and love of God that we have experienced – would it?


Down through the years billions have been set on fire by the Pentecost flame. John Wesley was assured of God’s forgiveness, and within him, as in so many lives was born a burning passion for evangelism and social justice. He, like so many who followed him, sought political change that would transform the lives of the poor through education, improve working conditions through the Trade Union movement and help bring an end to the slave trade.


And still today, Christians filled with the power of the Holy Spirit, wherever a government or a pattern of social care causes suffering and pain, work to put things right, whatever the cost.


As the story of God’s love spirals out from us empowered by the Holy Spirit within us, we recognise more and more that we owe everything to God. Our commitment, our determination and loyalty to God is part of the cost. The more we do, the more bravely we do it, the more we seem to receive to motivate us further. We are no longer orphans, God’s Spirit lives within us! God is our Father.

The greatest saints always seem to be the ones who most feel they are still indebted to God. Why? Because they have not been left as orphans – Jesus promised the Holy Spirit and he fulfilled his promise.


We are all at different points in the journey of our Christian discipleship; some of you may feel that you’re near the start of the journey, the good news of Jesus is still wriggling around in your head and heart and you’re still a listener and a learner.

Or perhaps the story of Jesus changed your life long ago and has since then determined how you look at everything; God’s love has touched the world through you, through your loves and friendships, through your voting and your work in the community, through your professional decisions and your career choices. Your witness has proclaimed: ‘I am not an orphan. I am a child of God.’


Wherever you are on the journey, you are as close to the power of the Holy Spirit today as those Parthians, Cappadocians and Cretans and Arabs were 2000 years ago.

Jesus never leaves his people as orphans: he filled those who responded to Peter’s message with the power of the Holy Spirit so they too might become God’s children, and he promises to do the same for you and me, for all who believe. All we have to do is what Peter told the crowd on that day in Jerusalem: “Repent and be baptised, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit”. Ask and receive. Be filled to overflowing. And go on being filled. Every morning, ask to be refilled with the life transforming power of the Holy Spirit.

Jesus keeps his promises! You are not an orphan. You are a child of God!


MP 525 O thou who camest from above https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PfDJL2CGQ9w


Intercessions: Offer your own prayers for the world, the church, for others and don’t forget yourself.


The Lord’s Prayer


MP 59 Blessed assurance https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yuyf1YQvcwY

MP 821 Down the mountain https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XW3ILo1U9Lw


Blessing


May the fire of the Spirit set you ablaze for the truth,

the breath of the Spirit breathe new hope into your life,

and the peace of the Spirit govern all that you do now and forever, to the glory of God.

Amen.


50 countries sing 'Amazing Grace' https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BA7pdABvpnc

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