Prayer & Preparation for May 19th, 2024

This Lord's Day

Hey church,

In connection with the emphasis of our text this week, I've been thinking about, and praying, a form of St. Patrick's Breastplate Prayer.

Christ be with me, Christ within me, Christ behind me,
Christ before me, Christ beside me, Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort me and restore me, Christ beneath me,
Christ above me, Christ in the hearts of all that love me,
Christ in the mouth of friend and stranger.
I bind unto myself the Name, the strong name of the Trinity, by invocation of the same, the Three in One and One in Three, of Whom all nature hath creation; Eternal Father, Spirit, Word: praise to the Lord of my salvation, salvation is of Christ the Lord. Amen.

Here are some details about this week's morning service:

Songs we'll sing: "Is He Worthy," "Christ the True and Better," "All Glory Be to Christ," "Show Us Christ," "Turn Your Eyes" (Sovereign Grace), and "Happy Day"

Sermon text: Acts 3:1-10

Sermon title: "What Jesus Continued to Do"

Cross-references: Isaiah 35:3-7; Luke 5:17-26; Acts 1:1; 2:43;
Galatians 2:20; Colossians 1:27-29

I'm reading The Gospel Commission (Michael Horton) right now, and I found this paragraph timely for our study this week:

"What about Jesus' miraculous signs? Jesus not only forgives and renews but heals and raises the dead. Yes, all of this is true. The kingdom is just this all-encompassing, but not everyone was healed. Not only were the resurrections few in number, but the beneficiary ended up dying again on another day.... What we have in these miraculous signs is a testimony to Christ and his kingdom's inauguration, not a pattern for our work of consummating it. The age to come is breaking in on this present evil age, but it's still the present evil age. Jesus healed the paralytic and said, 'Take heart, my son; your sins are forgiven,' provoking charges of blasphemy from the religious leaders (Matt. 9:2). Knowing their thoughts, Jesus said, '"Why do you think evil in your hearts? For which is easier, to say, 'Your sins are forgiven,' or to say 'Rise and walk'? But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins"-he then said to the paralytic-"Rise, pick up your bed and go home"' (Matthew 9:4-6). Jesus' works were signs that all authority was given to him to judge and to forgive, not object lessons for our fulfillment of the Great Commission."

That idea will serve as the basis of the application of our text to each of us as individuals and to our church. We're not called/commissioned to imitate Christ's or Peter's signs, but their proclaiming of the Gospel of the forgiveness of sins. Love you, church!

Jeff Tague