THE SERVICE FOR THE LORD’S DAY

Fifth Sunday after Pentecost
July 5, 2020

First Presbyterian Church, Fargo
The Session and members of First Presbyterian Church, extend a sincere welcome to you! We welcome all persons regardless of race, nationality, disability, gender, or sexual orientation. This includes an open invitation to membership, the sacraments of baptism and the Lord’s Supper, marriage, funerals, memorial services, and to serve as an officer of the church.

Prelude and Preparation for Worship

Prayer of the Day
Author of life, you cast your glory all around us; you invade our sleep; you reveal yourself in ancient stories and the give-and-take of common life. By the power of your Spirit, come to us now, for you have called us to this place. We pray in the name of Jesus—our hope, our confidence—and your beloved Son. Amen.

Gathering in Christ’s Presence

Welcome and Concerns of the Church
Opening Sentences
Beloved of God, the winter is past,  
The flowers appear on the earth,
The time of singing has come.  
Let us lift our voices in praise to our Creator.
Hymn — Awake, Awake, and Greet the New Morn
Singers: Penny Andrist, Pam Burns, Tori Hughes, Paul Lang, and Erynn Millard.  Accompanist: Sally Harmon
1 Awake! Awake, and greet the new morn,
For angles heralded it dawning.  
Sing our you joy, for soon he is born,  
Behold! The Child of our longing.  
Come as a baby weak and poor,  
To bring all hearts together,  
He opens wide the heavenly door
And lives now inside us forever.
 
2 To us, to all in sorrow and fear,
Emmanuel comes a-singing;
His humble song is quiet and near,  
Yet fills the earth with its ringing;
Music to heal the broken soul  
And hymns of loving kindness.  
The thunder of his anthems rolls
To shatter all hatred and violence
 
3 In darkest night his coming shall be,
When all the world is despairing,  
As morning light so quiet and free,
So warm and gentle and caring.  
Then shall the mute break forth in song,  
the lame shall leap in wonder,  
The weak be raised above the strong,  
And weapons be broken asunder.
 
4 Rejoice, rejoice, take heart in the night.  
Though dark the winter and cheerless,  
The rising sun shall crown you with light;
Be strong and loving and fearless.  
Love be our song and love our prayer
And love our endless story;
May God fill every day we share
And bring us at last into glory.
Call to Confession
Jesus said: Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.  

Prayer of Confession
Lord, we marvel at the thought of a well-fitted yoke, a burden scaled to match our frames; we do not know how to rest in the promise of such labor. Some of us are weary from unceasing responsibility; others find no welcome in the marketplace. We confound your vision for our common life. Forgive our blind striving, our stifled concern, the judgements we cast on others. Make yourself known to us in the silence. Shape your children for the commonwealth of your love. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

Assurance of God’s Forgiveness

Hearing God’s Word

Children’s Message
Prayer for Illumination
Lesson Matthew 11:16-19, 25-30  
‘But to what will I compare this generation? It is like children sitting in the market-places and calling to one another,  
“We played the flute for you, and you did not dance;
   we wailed, and you did not mourn.”  
For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, “He has a demon”; the Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, “Look, a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax-collectors and sinners!” Yet wisdom is vindicated by her deeds.’
At that time Jesus said, ‘I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and the intelligent and have revealed them to infants; yes, Father, for such was your gracious will. All things have been handed over to me by my Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.
‘Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’
 
Lesson Romans 7:15-25a
I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. Now if I do what I do not want, I agree that the law is good. But in fact it is no longer I that do it, but sin that dwells within me. For I know that nothing good dwells within me, that is, in my flesh. I can will what is right, but I cannot do it. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I do. Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I that do it, but sin that dwells within me.
So I find it to be a law that when I want to do what is good, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the law of God in my inmost self, but I see in my members another law at war with the law of my mind, making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!
So then, with my mind I am a slave to the law of God, but with my flesh I am a slave to the law of sin.

Sermon                   When We Want To Do Good
Hymn — Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing
1 Come, thou Fount of every blessing;
tune my heart to sing thy grace;
streams of mercy, never ceasing,
call for songs of loudest praise.
Teach me some melodious sonnet,
sung by flaming tongues above;
praise the mount! I’m fixed upon it,
mount of God’s unchanging love!

2 Here I raise my Ebenezer;
hither by thy help I’m come;
and I hope, by thy good pleasure,
safely to arrive at home.
Jesus sought me when a stranger,
wandering from the fold of God;
he, to rescue me from danger,
interposed his precious blood.

3 O to grace how great a debtor
daily I’m constrained to be!
Let that grace now, like a fetter,
bind my wandering heart to thee.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
prone to leave the God I love;
here’s my heart; O take and seal it;
seal it for thy courts above.

Responding to God’s Word

Statement of Faith                                       The Apostle's Creed

I believe in God, the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
he is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and he will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen.


Prayers of the People, ending with 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 debts, as we forgive our debtors; and lead us not into temptation, 
but deliver us from evil.  For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever.  Amen.

Call for the Offering, ending with the Prayer of Dedication

Bearing the Word into the World

Hymn — How Firm a Foundation
1 How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord,
is laid for your faith in God's excellent Word!
What more can be said than to you God hath said,
to you who for refuge to Jesus have fled?

2 "Fear not, I am with thee, O be not dismayed,
for I am thy God, and will still give thee aid;
I'll strengthen thee, help thee, and cause thee to stand,
upheld by my righteous, omnipotent hand.

3 "When through the deep waters I call thee to go,
the rivers of sorrow shall not overflow;
for I will be near thee, thy troubles to bless,
and sanctify to thee thy deepest distress.

4 "When through fiery trials thy pathway shall lie,
my grace, all sufficient, shall be thy supply;
the flame shall not hurt thee; I only design
thy dross to consume, and thy gold to refine.

5 "The soul that on Jesus hath leaned for repose,
I will not, I will not desert to its foes;
that soul, though all hell should endeavor to shake,
I'll never, no, never, no, never forsake."

Charge and Benediction
POSTLUDE