Service for December 6, 2020 – Second Sunday of Advent

Featured artwork is Jesus the Good Shepherd, by Jacques Le Breton and Jean Gaudin in Cathédrale d’Amiens, Amiens, France.

Download a PDF of this service’s bulletin here or follow along below.

Call to Worship

Lord, you were favorable to your land; you restored the fortunes of Jacob.
You forgave the iniquity of your people; you pardoned all their sin. Selah

Let me hear what God the Lord will speak, for he will speak peace to his people, to his faithful, to those who turn to him in their hearts. Surely his salvation is at hand for those who fear him, that his glory may dwell in our land.
Steadfast love and faithfulness will meet; righteousness and peace will kiss each other.
Faithfulness will spring up from the ground, and righteousness will look down from the sky.
The Lord will give what is good, and our land will yield its increase.
Righteousness will go before him, and will make a path for his steps.

Psalm 85:1-2, 8-13

Welcome and Announcements

Invocation for Peace

The Lighting of the Second Advent Candle – The Candle of Peace

Music

The Peace of Christ

May God grant us courage to change the things that need changing,
the peace to accept the things we cannot change,
and wisdom to know the difference.

Scripture Lesson 1

Isaiah 40:1-11

  1. Comfort, O comfort my people, says your God.
  2. Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and cry to her that she has served her term, that her penalty is paid, that she has received from the Lord’s hand double for all her sins.
  3. A voice cries out: “In the wilderness prepare the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
  4. Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain.
  5. Then the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all people shall see it together, for the mouth of the LORD has spoken.”
  6. A voice says, “Cry out!” And I said, “What shall I cry?” All people are grass, their constancy is like the flower of the field.
  7. The grass withers, the flower fades, when the breath of the LORD blows upon it; surely the people are grass.
  8. The grass withers, the flower fades; but the word of our God will stand forever.
  9. Get you up to a high mountain, O Zion, herald of good tidings; lift up your voice with strength, O Jerusalem, herald of good tidings, lift it up, do not fear; say to the cities of Judah, “Here is your God!”
  10. See, the Lord GOD comes with might, and his arm rules for him; his reward is with him, and his recompense before him.
  11. He will feed his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs in his arms, and carry them in his bosom, and gently lead the mother sheep.

Scripture Lesson 2

2 Peter 3:8-15a

  1. But do not ignore this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like one day.
  2. The Lord is not slow about his promise, as some think of slowness, but is patient with you, not wanting any to perish, but all to come to repentance.
  3. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a loud noise, and the elements will be dissolved with fire, and the earth and everything that is done on it will be disclosed.
  4. Since all these things are to be dissolved in this way, what sort of persons ought you to be in leading lives of holiness and godliness,
  5. waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be set ablaze and dissolved, and the elements will melt with fire?
  6. But, in accordance with his promise, we wait for new heavens and a new earth, where righteousness is at home.
  7. Therefore, beloved, while you are waiting for these things, strive to be found by him at peace, without spot or blemish;
  8. a. and regard the patience of our Lord as salvation. So also our beloved brother Paul wrote to you according to the wisdom given him.

Pastoral Prayer

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
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, forever.
Amen.

Sermon Lesson

Mark 1:1-11 – Read by Deacon Vincent Haskell

  1. The beginning of the good news of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
  2. As it is written in the prophet Isaiah, “See, I am sending my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way;
  3. the voice of one crying out in the wilderness: ‘Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight,’”
  4. John the baptizer appeared in the wilderness, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.
  5. And people from the whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem were going out to him, and were baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins.
  6. Now John was clothed with camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist, and he ate locusts and wild honey.
  7. He proclaimed, “The one who is more powerful than I is coming after me; I am not worthy to stoop down and untie the thong of his sandals.
  8. I have baptized you with water; but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”
  9. In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan.
  10. And just as he was coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on him.
  11. And a voice came from heaven, “You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.”

Sermon

The Beginning of the Good News – Rev. Nicolas Mumejian

Benediction


In the Life of the Church

Welcome to Riverside Baptist Church, where our one law is love of God and neighbor. Justice and peace matter to us. So we celebrate racial diversity, gender equality, and inclusion of all persons no matter their sexual orientation. We draw the circle of God’s love large here. You’re included. Christ is the center here. No one more and nothing less.

With the continued recommendation from the CDC and local authorities Riverside’s building will remain closed until further notice. While the building is closed, we gather online to worship. We will keep you updated through the newsletter and the website on the status of the building. Please do not hesitate to contact our staff should you need anything.

Visitors – please go here to let us know that you were online with us today.

Every Sunday at 11:00 am we gather online via Zoom to fellowship and pray. Information is available on the website. This Sunday we will share communion at the end of the meeting. Bring your elements to your table that we may all join around Christ’s table. Please join us!

Bible Study is on break until January.

Today is the second Sunday of Advent!

Toys for Tots donations are due by TOMORROW, December 7! The SW CommUnity Forum, in cooperation with the SW churches, is organizing a Toys for Tots distribution at Westminster Presbyterian Church this Saturday, December 12. We are looking for folks to help unload the truck of toys at Westminster Friday, December 11, and to assist with hospitality at the distribution of toys at Westminster on Saturday, December 12. We are also looking for donations, especially of gift cards for teenagers. Please have donations of gift cards or cash to the church office by tomorrow, December 7, so that we can ensure they are at Westminster in time for the distribution. Contact the church office for more information, to volunteer, or to donate. Thank you!

Our choral Christmas program will be presented Sunday, December 20 during the Sunday service.

On Christmas Eve at 7:00 pm, we will have a live service of lessons and carols via Zoom. Details will be available on the website as we get closer.

We extend our deepest Christian sympathy to Ambassador Mattie Sharpless in the passing of her mother, Lecola Sharpless.

Pray For: Danielle Ford’s aunt, Connie Jasper; Danielle Ford and Laurel Eierman; Derek Ford and his sister, Misha Reed; Annie Abbott; Brenda Rozier-Clark and the family of Rev. Paul Clark; Anthony Maimer’s sister, Davi Stuhlsatz; Denise Bennett’s sister, Dyanne Smith; Tanya Bethel’s mother, Ruby McCrary; Pamela Maimer’s sister, Monica Thomas and mother, Clara Jefferson; Bob Nelson; Laurel Eierman’s mother, Marcia Tringali; Tanya Bethel; Gale Miller’s mother, Marian Miller; Karl Maxwell; Edith Booker; Emma Wright’s sister Sallie Williams; Lillie Ransom’s sister Teriea and her husband, Jerry; Sheba Greene’s daughter Donna; Dr. Bledsoe’s mother, Peggy Bledsoe