Welcome to this week's ToGather.church. Our focus comes from our Verse of the Day, Isaiah 33:21-22 NLT:
The LORD will be our Mighty One. He will be like a wide river of protection that no enemy can cross, that no enemy ship can sail upon. For the LORD is our judge, our lawgiver, and our king. He will care for us and save us.
Our verse today is powerful and encouraging — a message we need to hear as Jesus' followers at this time. This message, however, isn't a personal message. It is not a promise to a person, but a promise to a people: God's people!
To help us hear the message Isaiah shared so many years ago, Phil challenges us to ask three questions that are related to our Bible passage and that help us apply it properly:
- Are we located strategically yet dangerously as God's people?
- As Jesus' disciples, on what leader do we base our security?
- As Christians in the world today, who are our people, and are we united?
We trust that you will be blessed by our time in the Scriptures with Phil's message video on our Verse of the Day and our time in worship with our songs chosen by Demetrius, Communion time lead by Doug Peters, Phil's message in our full worship video, and our prayer and blessing. Let's worship!
Phil reminded us in his message today that we must be able to answer our three questions (listed above) in these ways:
- We are located strategically at a crucial time in world history. This also means we are often located in dangerous places. Many of our brothers and sisters face persecution and martyrdom, while others of us can face criticism, rejection, and ridicule.
- We must rely on Jesus for our security, not on any fallible and flawed earthly leader. Salvation comes from our LORD!
- We must stand together faithfully as we seek to give witness to a world that is lost in darkness and decay.
So, we hold God's promise through Isaiah 33:21-22 NLT close our hearts, joining our hearts together in love. As the Holy Spirit encourages us:
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer, and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him, he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners so that you will not grow weary and lose heart (Hebrews 12:1-3).
The full worship video leads us to open our hearts to God and his love as we sing, share the Lord's Supper, receive a lesson from God's word, and share a closing prayer and blessing. May the Holy Spirit fill, inspire, and empower us as we worship!