Service for March 14, 2021

Featured artwork is Brazen Serpent Monument on Mount Nebo in Jordan created by Italian artist Giovanni Fantoni.

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

Call to Worship

O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever.
Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, those he redeemed from trouble
and gathered in from the lands, from the east and from the west, from the north and from the south.

Some were sick through their sinful ways, and because of their iniquities endured affliction; they loathed any kind of food, and they drew near to the gates of death.
Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress;
he sent out his word and healed them, and delivered them from destruction.
Let them thank the Lord for his steadfast love, for his wonderful works to humankind.
And let them offer thanksgiving sacrifices, and tell of his deeds with songs of joy.

Psalm 107:1-3, 17-22

Welcome and Announcements



The Peace of Christ

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

Scripture Lesson 1

Numbers 21:4-9

  1. From Mount Hor they set out by the way to the Red Sea, to go around the land of Edom; but the people became impatient on the way.
  2. The people spoke against God and against Moses, “Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? For there is no food and no water, and we detest this miserable food.”
  3. Then the Lord sent poisonous serpents among the people, and they bit the people, so that many Israelites died.
  4. The people came to Moses and said, “We have sinned by speaking against the Lord and against you; pray to the Lord to take away the serpents from us.” So Moses prayed for the people.
  5. And the Lord said to Moses, “Make a poisonous serpent, and set it on a pole; and everyone who is bitten shall look at it and live.”
  6. So Moses made a serpent of bronze, and put it upon a pole; and whenever a serpent bit someone, that person would look at the serpent of bronze and live.

Scripture Lesson 2

Ephesians 2:1-10 – Selected and read by Deacon Lillie Ransom

  1. You were dead through the trespasses and sins
  2. in which you once lived, following the course of this world, following the ruler of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work among those who are disobedient.
  3. All of us once lived among them in the passions of our flesh, following the desires of flesh and senses, and we were by nature children of wrath, like everyone else.
  4. But God, who is rich in mercy, out of the great love with which he loved us
  5. even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ–by grace you have been saved–
  6. and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,
  7. so that in the ages to come he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.
  8. For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God–
  9. not the result of works, so that no one may boast.
  10. For we are what he has made us, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand to be our way of life.

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.

Sermon Lesson

John 3:14-21

  1. And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up,
  2. that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.
  3. “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.
  4. “Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.
  5. Those who believe in him are not condemned; but those who do not believe are condemned already, because they have not believed in the name of the only Son of God.
  6. And this is the judgment, that the light has come into the world, and people loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil.
  7. For all who do evil hate the light and do not come to the light, so that their deeds may not be exposed.
  8. But those who do what is true come to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that their deeds have been done in God.”


Snake Bite Love – Rev. Nicolas Mumejian


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 week we will share communion following the prayer meeting. Bring the elements to your table so that we may all gather together at the Lord’s table. Please join us!

Wednesday, March 17 is Saint Patrick’s Day. Join us online at 7:00 pm for Pints with the Pastor, an informal gathering and chance for folk to talk with one another and get to know the pastor better. You’re encouraged to bring your favorite beverage. See the calendar entry for information on joining.

Bible Study continues Wednesday, March 24 at 6:30 pm. The Zoom link is available on the website under Online Community Services. We will be discussing Eschatology and the End Times and what they mean for us. Join us!

Sunday, March 28, following the prayer meeting (approximately noon), we will have a specially called servanthood meeting via Zoom, for members to nominate and elect board members. This will be in the same Zoom room as the prayer meeting. Members, please plan to attend and participate in the life of your church.

March 2021 – Serve Your City and Ward 6 Mutual Aid are hosting a clothing donation drive throughout March for Southwest kids. Donate gently used, clean baby and children’s clothing and shoes and new, still in the package, underwear and socks for ages infants to teens. Bring donations to the Christ United Methodist Church (900 4th Street SW) Courtyard Gate Monday, Wednesday or Friday 3:00-6:00 pm or Saturday 11:00 am-2:00 pm or donate online. For more information, email Serve Your City.

Scholarships for high school and undergraduate college students are available from the Greater Washington Urban League. GWUL has opened applications for its 2021 scholarships. The deadline for application is March 31. For information, visit the GWUL web site.

Today’s featured artwork is “The Brazen Serpent Monument,” created by Italian artist Giovanni Fantoni.

Pray For: Pamela Maimer’s sisters, Monica Thomas and Tonya Jefferson, and mother, Clara Jefferson; EJ Hill and family; Lynda Gyles and family; 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; 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