Service for December 5, 2021 – Second Sunday of Advent

Featured art is “Heavenly Window,” a stained glass window in Chapelle Notre-Dame-de-Grâce-et-de-Toute-Joie in Villeneuve-sur-Lot, France.


Call to Worship

“Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for he has looked favorably on his people and redeemed them.
He has raised up a mighty savior for us in the house of his servant David,
as he spoke through the mouth of his holy prophets from of old,
that we would be saved from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us.
Thus he has shown the mercy promised to our ancestors, and has remembered his holy covenant,
the oath that he swore to our ancestor Abraham, to grant us
that we, being rescued from the hands of our enemies, might serve him without fear,
in holiness and righteousness before him all our days.
And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High; for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways, to give knowledge of salvation to his people by the forgiveness of their sins.
By the tender mercy of our God, the dawn from on high will break upon us,
to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.”

Luke 1:68-79

Songs of Praise

Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee
10,000 Reasons
O Little Town of Bethlehem

Welcome and Announcements

Invocation and Lighting of the Advent Candle

The Peace of Christ

O for a thousand tongues to sing my great Redeemer’s praise, the glories of my God and King, the triumphs of God’s grace!

Jesus! the name that charms our fears, that bids our sorrows cease, ’tis music in the sinner’s ears, ’tis life and health and peace.


Response – We Give Thee But Thine Own

We give thee but thine own whate’er the gift may be
All that we have is thine alone, a trust oh Lord from thee. Amen.

Prayer of Thanks

Scripture Lesson 1

Luke 3:1-6

  1. In the fifteenth year of the reign of Emperor Tiberius, when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea, and Herod was ruler of Galilee, and his brother Philip ruler of the region of Ituraea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias ruler of Abilene,
  2. during the high priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came to John son of Zechariah in the wilderness.
  3. He went into all the region around the Jordan, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins,
  4. as it is written in the book of the words of the prophet Isaiah,

    “The voice of one crying out in the wilderness:
    ‘Prepare the way of the Lord,
    make his paths straight.
  5. Every valley shall be filled,
    and every mountain and hill shall be made low,
    and the crooked shall be made straight,
    and the rough ways made smooth;
  6. and all flesh shall see the salvation of God.’”

Scripture Lesson 2

Philippians 1:3-11 – Selected and read by Deacon Margo Ferguson

  1. I thank my God every time I remember you,
  2. constantly praying with joy in every one of my prayers for all of you,
  3. because of your sharing in the gospel from the first day until now.
  4. I am confident of this, that the one who began a good work among you will bring it to completion by the day of Jesus Christ.
  5. It is right for me to think this way about all of you, because you hold me in your heart, for all of you share in God’s grace with me, both in my imprisonment and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel.
  6. For God is my witness, how I long for all of you with the compassion of Christ Jesus.
  7. And this is my prayer, that your love may overflow more and more with knowledge and full insight
  8. to help you to determine what is best, so that in the day of Christ you may be pure and blameless,
  9. having produced the harvest of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ for the glory and praise of God.

Musical Response

Mighty To Save

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

Malachi 3:1-4

  1. See, I am sending my messenger to prepare the way before me, and the Lord whom you seek will suddenly come to his temple. The messenger of the covenant in whom you delight—indeed, he is coming, says the Lord of hosts.
  2. But who can endure the day of his coming, and who can stand when he appears?

    For he is like a refiner’s fire and like fullers’ soap;
  3. he will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver, and he will purify the descendants of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, until they present offerings to the Lord in righteousness.
  4. Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasing to the Lord as in the days of old and as in former years.


A Refining Moment – Rev. Nicolas Mumejian

The Ordinance of Holy Communion

Hymn of Consecration

I Surrender All



Sweet, Sweet Spirit

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.

We will be live-streaming the service, and a recording of the service will be available on the website later for those who are not able to be here in person yet.

EVERYONE – Please go here to let us know that you were here today. You can also go here to sign up for the weekly email newsletter, or request contact from the pastor.

Cards are due by today! Westminster Presbyterian is again coordinating with Toys for Tots, the SW CommUnity Forum, and other neighborhood churches to provide Christmas gifts to neighborhood children. They are especially in need of $20 gift cards for teenagers.

Riverside will present the annual Choir Christmas Music Program on Sunday, December 19. It will be followed by a reception in the multipurpose room. Please join us and invite your family and friends to be part of this wonderful celebration!

Friday, December 24 is Christmas Eve. We will have a Zoom service. Information will be available on the website soon.

The Endowment Committee will meet in December to consider organizations to receive donations from the endowment for 2021. The congregation is asked to submit suggestions for possible recipients before December 11 so they can be included in the discussion. Suggestions can be submitted via email to

Pray For: Annie Clifford; Terri Battle and her mother, Claudia Green; Karl Maxwell’s brother, Kenneth Maxwell; Edward Harris’s mother, Ruth Harris; Edith Booker; Pamela Maimer’s sisters, Monica Thomas and Tonya Jefferson, and mother, Clara Jefferson; Lynda Gyles and family; Derek Ford and his sister, Misha Reed; Annie Abbott; Anthony Maimer’s sister, Davi Stuhlsatz; Denise Bennett’s sister, Dyanne Smith; Tanya Bethel’s mother, Ruby McCrary; Tanya Bethel; Gale Miller’s mother, Marian Miller; Karl Maxwell; 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