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5th December 2021

Unfortunately there will be no recording of the Worship today.

Second Sunday in Advent

Minister: Rev. Mark Foster
Organist: Iain Mackinnon

Opening Voluntary – Air from Water Music.  GF Handel (1685-1759)

Welcome and Intimations

Call to Worship

MEN: With Isaiah, we welcome promise.
WOMEN: With Micah, we welcome hope.
MEN: With Mary, we welcome justice.
WOMEN: With Joseph, we welcome dreams.
MEN: With the Shepherds, we welcome good news.
WOMEN: With the Magi, we welcome new birth.
ALL: With this season, we welcome Christ’s coming.
With God’s promise, we welcome the future.

Hymn 473Thy kingdom come!

1 ‘Thy kingdom come!’ – on bended knee
the passing ages pray;
and faithful souls have yearned to see
on earth that kingdom’s day.

2 But the slow watches of the night
not less to God belong;
and for the everlasting right
the silent stars are strong.

3 And lo, already on the hills
the flags of dawn appear;
gird up your loins, ye prophet souls,
proclaim the day is near:

4 The day in whose clear-shining light
all wrong shall stand revealed,
when justice shall be throned with might,
and every hurt be healed:

5 When knowledge, hand in hand with peace,
shall walk the earth abroad,
the day of perfect righteousness,
the promised day of God.

Prayer of Approach, ending with Lord’s Prayer

Lighting the Advent Candle

Hymn 282 Christmas is coming

ALL: ‘Christmas is coming!’,
the church is glad to sing,
and let the advent candles
brightly burn in a ring.

The first is for God’s promise
to put the wrong things right,
and bring to earth’s darkness
the hope of love and light.

The second for the prophets,
who said that Christ would come
with good news for many
and angry words for some.

All: ‘Christmas is coming!’,
the church is glad to sing,
and let the advent candles
brightly burn in a ring.

                  Scripture Readings:  Reader: Tim Bell

Malachi 3: 1-4

 ‘I will send my messenger, who will prepare the way before me. Then suddenly the Lord you are seeking will come to his temple; the messenger of the covenant, whom you desire, will come,’ says the Lord Almighty.
But who can endure the day of his coming? Who can stand when he appears? For he will be like a refiner’s fire or a launderer’s soap. He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver; he will purify the Levites and refine them like gold and silver. Then the Lord will have men who will bring offerings in righteousness, and the offerings of Judah and Jerusalem will be acceptable to the Lord, as in days gone by, as in years.

Luke 3: 1-8
John the Baptist prepares the way

In the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar – when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea, Herod tetrarch of Galilee, his brother Philip tetrarch of Iturea and Traconitis, and Lysanias tetrarch of Abilene – during the high-priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came to John son of Zechariah in the wilderness. He went into all the country around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. As it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet:
‘A voice of one calling in the wilderness,
“Prepare the way for the Lord,
    make straight paths for him.
Every valley shall be filled in,
    every mountain and hill made low.
The crooked roads shall become straight,
    the rough ways smooth.
6 And all mankind will see God’s salvation.’

John said to the crowds coming out to be baptised by him, ‘You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath? Produce fruit in keeping with repentance. And do not begin to say to yourselves, “We have Abraham as our father.” For I tell you that out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham.

Sermon

Hymn 334 On Jordan’s bank the Baptist’s cry

1 On Jordan’s bank, the Baptist’s cry
announces that the Lord is nigh;
awake, and hearken, for he brings
glad tidings of the King of kings.

2 Then cleansed be every heart from sin;
make straight the way for God within;
prepare we in our hearts a home,
where such a mighty Guest may come.

3 For you are our salvation, Lord,
our refuge and our great reward;
without your grace we waste away,
like flowers that wither and decay.

4 Stretch forth your hand, to heal our sore,
and make us rise to fall no more;
once more upon your people shine,
and fill the world with love divine.

5 All praise, to you, eternal Son,
whose advent has our freedom won,
whom with the Father we adore,
and Holy Spirit, evermore.

Doxology –spoken together

All glory be to God on high,
and to the earth be peace;
good will is shown from heaven above
and never more shall cease.


Prayer of Dedication for the Offering

Prayers for the World

Hymn 472 Come, thou long-expected Jesus

1 Come, Thou long-expected Jesus
born to set thy people free;
from our fears and sins release us,
let us find our rest in thee.

2 Israel’s strength and consolation,
hope of all the earth thou art,
dear desire of every nation,
joy of every longing heart.

3 Born thy people to deliver,
born a child and yet a King,
born to reign in us for ever,
now thy gracious kingdom bring.

4 By thine own eternal Spirit
rule in all our hearts alone;
by thine all-sufficient merit
raise us to thy glorious throne.

Benediction
Threefold Amen

Closing Voluntary – March from Occasional Overture   GF Handel (1685-1759)

INTIMATIONS

Sunday Services – We are pleased to welcome Rev Mark Foster, minister at Pilrig St Paul’s church, to take our service today.
Mark will be back with us next Sunday, 12 December

Christmas gifts for The Citadel children and families will be collected today and next Sunday 12th December. Suggestions are: toiletries for teenagers (boys and girls); student materials such as pens, pencils, stationery sets, pencil-cases; and for older folk boxes of chocolates: e.g. After Eights, Selection Box

Christmas cards: If you’d like to have a look at the Traidcraft (Christian Aid etc) cards please let me know and I can give you a catalogue. I can order through the One World Shop as in previous years.
Thanks, Margot Hudson

Christmas Appeal: The Kirk Session has agreed that this year’s Christmas Appeal will be for the Fresh Start Cooker appeal. Donations will be collected till the end of December. Please put them in an envelope marked ‘Christmas Appeal’; use a Gift Aid envelope if you can give by Gift Aid.

Leith Churches Together – Lunch Time Service
This coming Thursday, 9th December, 1pm at St Mary’s Star of the Sea. Those attending are asked to bring their own lunch. All welcome.

Advent calendar – Visit the Church of Scotland website to see a daily Advent message.
The Church of Scotland

See below for the prayer on 2 December from Rev Elsie Macrae the minister at Moffat: St Andrews, Kirkpatrick Juxta and Wamphray.

Father God,
this Advent we come before Your throne of grace,
we come with our brokenness,
we come with our fears, anxieties and worries, yes!
Lord, we come simply as we are.

Almighty God,
we have been overwhelmed with everything that is happening in our current lives,
especially this past year.
We indeed have been shaken, frightened and we now feel displaced with no grounding,
we are hurting as we struggle to hold on to something,
and yet find nothing to hold on to.

Father God,
forgive our ways.
We are continually searching for Your face, we ask you come down.
May we feel Your power move amongst us this Advent.
Make clear to us, Father, the meaning of Christ’s coming.
Come comfort Your children,
may your presence be felt in this frightened world we live in.
Hear these, our prayers, Lord,
Amen.
[Romans 15:13]

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