REDEEMER UNITED METHODIST CHURCH
October 1, 2023
Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost
World Communion Sunday
Processional: “Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah”
Invocation: Good morning and welcome!
Lord, throughout the world today, Christians are sharing in the sacrament of Holy Communion. We come together with a bountiful table set in the midst of struggle and strife. Help us to receive the elements of bread and wine for the nourishment of our souls and for the strengthening of our witness to your love for us. In Jesus’ Name, we pray. AMEN.
Call to Worship!
L: Come! Now is the time to worship!
P: We come to worship God who loves us.
L: When the Israelites grumbled and quarreled when there was no water to drink, God miraculously produced water to show them God’s faithfulness and love.
P: When we question and accuse God, God responds by showing us love.
L: When the chief priests and elders questioned Jesus’ authority, Jesus answered them with a story about the righteousness of doing God’s will instead of paying lip service to God’s will.
P: When we test and interrogate God, God responds by pointing us back to love.
L: By answering our quarrelling and questioning with love, God teaches us how to love God, neighbor, self, and all creation.
P: When we love as God loves, we respond to testing and accusing by living the faith and sharing God’s love.
L: Come! Now is the time to worship!
P: We come to worship God who loves us for the long haul.
Words of Welcome and Parish News
*Gathering Hymn: “Go Down Moses” 448 UMH
Prayers of the people and a time for Silent Prayer
Prayer Focus: Faith
Scripture Readings: Old Testament Exodus 17: 1-7
Water from the Rock
17 From the wilderness of Sin the whole congregation of the Israelites journeyed by stages, as the Lord commanded. They camped at Rephidim, but there was no water for the people to drink. 2 The people quarreled with Moses and said, “Give us water to drink.” Moses said to them, “Why do you quarrel with me? Why do you test the Lord?” 3 But the people thirsted there for water, and the people complained against Moses and said, “Why did you bring us out of Egypt, to kill us and our children and livestock with thirst?” 4 So Moses cried out to the Lord, “What shall I do for this people? They are almost ready to stone me.” 5 The Lord said to Moses, “Go on ahead of the people and take some of the elders of Israel with you; take in your hand the staff with which you struck the Nile and go. 6 I will be standing there in front of you on the rock at Horeb. Strike the rock, and water will come out of it, so that the people may drink.” Moses did so, in the sight of the elders of Israel. 7 He called the place Massah[a] and Meribah, [b] because the Israelites quarreled and tested the Lord, saying, “Is the Lord among us or not?”
Special Music: “My God is Awesome” Heidi and Bronzie Simpson
The Message “Speak Up!” Rev. Marshall Murphy Jr.
Today, on this World Communion Sunday, many people of all ages are upset with God. We are listening to the cries of many people. People are asking for shelter, refuge, and, in various places, justice. This scripture looks at several situations. Moses is called to lead the people out of misery, suffering, and slavery from Egypt into an unknown frontier. In our communities, people are thirsty for joy, happiness, and a relationship with God. As a church, we are thirsty to build bridges for people to have a relationship with Christ for the transformation of the world.
This passage in the Exodus narrative is one of a struggle people live in right now in life. People in bad relationships question if God’s heart has a place for them. Think about families struggling with social ills. Sure, many people have a roof over their heads, but the growing challenges of life under that roof turn into pain and suffering. This world communion Sunday is a time to embrace humanity. Many souls are going through various conditions affecting their lives. Our United Methodist Church responds to many crises in this world through compassion. The UMC helps communities. As a local church, we may never understand our impact in this church. We
Holy God of infinite patience and grace, we bring our offerings today knowing that our actions too often don’t live up to our intentions and aspirations. When calling ourselves Christians, we announce ourselves as followers of Christ, knowing how many times our choices have made us unrecognizable as his disciples. Yet you wait patiently for us to find our way back to the path.
Offertory Music: “Let My People Seek Their Freedom”
*Doxology: UMH 95
Praise God, from whom all blessings flow; praise him, all creatures here below; praise him above, ye heavenly host; praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Amen.
*Unison Prayer of Dedication:
May our giving this day and our living reflect our desire to be on the path that would be recognized as faithful to the Savior, in whose blessed name we pray. Amen.
Special Music: “One World, One Communion” Fred Love
The Sacrament of Holy Communion (Symbolic Service) UMH 15
The Lord’s Prayer
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. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.
*Closing Hymn: “God the Spirit, Guide and Guardian” 648 UMH
So now go from this time and place guided by our loving God who leads you to respond to the quarreling and questioning of the world with a living faith and abundant love. Amen.
Recessional: “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing” (Please remain seated to meditate and reflect on the music)