Songs and Scenes: Advent 12.18.16

December 18 was the fourth Sunday of Advent 2016. Advent (which means “coming” or “arrival”) is a season where the church remembers Christ’s first coming and anticipates his promised return It is a season characterized by prayer, quiet waiting and joyful expectation.

This post reviews the songs from the fourth Sunday of Advent. We’ve included a link to a Spotify playlist of Sunday’s songs (when available) so you can enjoy listening to them throughout your week. This week’s liturgy recap features photos by Scott Patrick Myers.

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1. Call to Worship: Isaiah 9:2, 7-9

The people walking in darkness
have seen a great light;
on those living in the land of deep darkness
a light has dawned.

For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the greatness of his government and peace
there will be no end.
He will reign on David’s throne
and over his kingdom,
establishing and upholding it
with justice and righteousness
from that time on and forever.
The zeal of the Lord Almighty
will accomplish this.

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2. He Shall Reign Forevermore by Matt Maher & Chris Tomlin

In the bleak midwinter
All creation groans
And for a world in darkness
Frozen like a stone
Light is breaking
In a stable for a throne

And He shall reign
Forevermore, forevermore
And He shall reign
Forevermore, forevermore
Unto us a child is born
The King of kings and Lord of lords
And He shall reign
Forevermore, forevermore

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3. Scripture Reading: Luke 1:68-79

Leader: Blessed be the Lord the God of Israel,
who has come to his people and set them free.
He has raised up for us a mighty Savior,
born of the house of his servant David.

All: This is the Christ, our God and Lord.

Leader: Through his holy prophets God promised of old
to save us from our enemies,
from the hands of all that hate us,
To show mercy to our ancestors,
and to remember his holy covenant.

All: This is the Christ, our God and Lord.

Leader: This was the oath God swore to our father Abraham:
to set us free from the hands of our enemies,
Free to worship him without fear,
holy and righteous in his sight
all the days of our life.

All: This is the Christ, our God and Lord.

Leader: In the tender compassion of our God
the dawn from on high shall break upon us,
To shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death,
and to guide our feet into the way of peace.

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4. This is The Christ – Words: Martin Luther (1535), Translation: Catherine Winkworth (1855), Music: Sandra McCracken

Good news from heav’n the angels bring
Glad tidings to the earth they sing:
To us this day a child is giv’n,
To crown us with the joy of heav’n.

This is the Christ, our God and Lord,
Who in all need shall aid afford;
He will Himself our Saviour be,
From all our sins to set us free.

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5. Prayer of Lament (adapted from the Open Sourcebook)

Leader: Lord Jesus,

We look with hope for the day when there is no more grief,
no more sorrow, no more sin, no more death.
When you return you will restore us and we will be made complete.

All: Come, Lord Jesus.

Leader: Into our troubles and weaknesses,
Into the barren places of our souls, come, Lord,

All: Come, restore us and make us whole.

Into the war torn and the refugee,
Into those who live in conflict, come, Lord,

All: Come, restore us and make us whole.

Leader: Into the homeless and the unemployed,
Into those who feel abandoned, come, Lord,

All: Come, restore us and make us whole.

Leader: Into the poor and the starving,
Into those who are sick, oppressed, or abused, come, Lord,

All: Come, restore us and make us whole.

Leader: Jesus, we long for your coming.

Hasten that day when those who seek you in every nation will
come from the east and the west, from the north and the south,
and sit at table in Your Kingdom.

Hasten the day when your Kingdom will come in all its glory,
where you will wipe every tear from every eye
and suffering, pain, sickness, oppression, and death will be overcome forever.

All: Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.

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6. New Song: Psalm 126 by Isaac Wardell

Although we are weeping
Lord, help us keep sowing
The seeds of Your Kingdom
For the day You will reap them
Your sheaves we will carry
Lord, please do not tarry
All those who sow weeping
will go out with songs of joy

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7. Words of Assurance: Based on Isaiah 35

Leader: The wilderness and desert will be glad in those days.
The wasteland will rejoice and blossom with spring crocuses.
There the LORD will display his glory,
the splendor of our God.

All: Joy to the world!

Leader: With this news, strengthen those who have tired hands,
and encourage those who have weak knees.
Say to those with fearful hearts,
“Be strong, and do not fear,
for your God is coming to save you.”

All: Joy to the world!

Leader: And when he comes, he will open the eyes of the blind
and unplug the ears of the deaf.
The lame will leap like a deer,
and those who cannot speak will sing for joy!

All: Joy to the world!

Leader: Those who have been ransomed by the LORD
will return with singing,
crowned with everlasting joy.
Sorrow and mourning will disappear,
and they will be filled with joy and gladness.

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8. Joy to the World – Words: Isaac Watts (1719) (based on Psalm 98), Music: ANTIOCH C.M.rep. George Frederick Handel (1742), Arr. Lowell Mason (1836), Based on an arrangement by Red Mountain Music

Joy to the world, the Lord is come!
Let earth receive her King;
Let every heart prepare Him room,
And Heaven and nature sing,
And Heaven and nature sing,
And Heaven, and Heaven, and nature sing.

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9. God With Us by Jason Ingram and Leslie Jordan

Oh You’ve come to bring peace to be Love
To be nearer to us
You’ve come to bring life to be Light
To shine brighter in us
Oh Emmanuel, God with u

Our Deliverer You are Savior
In Your presence we find our strength
Over ev’rything our Redemption
God with us, You are God with us

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10. A Day of Glory by Chris Collins, Justin Cofield, Aaron Ivey, Matt Carter (based on hymn text by John M. Neale)

A day, a day of promise,
a hope to end our woe
A day that tells of triumph
against our vanquished foe

In flesh His entrance humble,
the swaddling clothes His robe
The meek displayed in power,
the Prince of Peace now known

Let angels shout the triumph
as mortals raise their voice,
“Behold the Son of heav’n and earth,
the King of Kings is born!”

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Music Team for December 18, 2016:

Paul Betts: Drums
David Clarke: Vocals
Emily Herzog: Vocals & Acoustic Guitar
Scott Johnson: Vocals & Electric Guitar
Renan Leme: Violin
Dalton Maggard: Piano
Britney McMurry: Violin
Ryan Ponder: Bass

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