Summer Seeds Liturgy: #psalms Week 1

Psalms Summer NL Series https://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=4073

PSALM 113 First Sunday of Psalms series

This Psalm has pretty good liturgy and exegetical resources at preachingandworship.org, some of which are highlighted below*; see https://preachingandworship.org/search/psalm%20113 to do your own exploring

Themes include God bending down and/or making the barren fruitful (beyond the question of childbearing)

ILLUSTRATIONS

Although this can be credited to Calvin (see https://www.woh.org/devotional/2017/12/24/gods-baby-talk/),  when reading for my dissertation I found the same illustration in Zwingli (who predates Calvin): God talks baby talk to us because this is what we can understand (condescension). Of course now I cannot locate the Zwingli reference…

HYMNS listed in the NL resource above include ones that also include Father’s Day themes, suggesting that the action of God in this psalm could be called fatherly; wish we had a better word for “parenting;” it’s less gendered, but it doesn’t have the same tender overtones…

Praise My Soul, the King of Heaven

  1. 3

Fatherlike he tends and spares us;
well our feeble frame he knows.
In his hand he gently bears us,
rescues us from all our foes

https://www.godtube.com/popular-hymns/praise-my-soul-the-king-of-heaven/

 

How Deep the Father’s Love for Us

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YV2zMZ-nZ7k

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1vmY2ztb5xc

 

Father, I Adore You

https://youtu.be/E640Q6bC64I?list=RDE640Q6bC64I

 

Abba, Father You are the Potter, We are the Clay (more Father’s Day than Psalm 113)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SoSVOB6q51A

 

Let Us with a Gladsome Mind

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ikz9FmPfdsw

 

Of the Father’s Love Begotten

From All That Dwell Below the Skies

Ye Servant of God, Your Master Proclaim

The Day Thou Gavest, Lord, Is Ended

HYMN LISTING for Psalm 113 from Hymnary.org at https://hymnary.org/texts?qu=psalm+113&media=text&page=0

From CCM type sources:

https://worship-songs-resources.worshiptogether.com/music/Psalm%20113

 

HYMNS RELATED to theme of SELF-EMPTYING (* indicates also includes the idea of the name)

Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence

Hark the Herald Angels Sing

Once in Royal David’s City

O Love, How Deep, How Broad, How High

What Wondrous Love Is This

Go to Dark Gethsemane

O Sacred Head Now Wounded

Were You There?

All Hail the Power of Jesus’ Name*

At the Name of Jesus*

The Head That Once Was Crowned

Rejoice, the Lord is King

A Mighty Fortress is Our God

Lift High the Cross

 

BULLETIN COVERS but not sure if/how you can print/save

https://www.flickr.com/search/?text=psalm%20113

https://www.google.com/search?safe=strict&q=psalm+113+bulletin+cover&tbm=isch&source=univ&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwj0qdyhu87iAhULZd8KHfetAmQQsAR6BAgFEAE&biw=1707&bih=821

 

LITURGICAL RESOURCES

Prayer of Approach: Psalm 113 from worshipblogspot*

Here’s an opening prayer inspired by Psalm 113.  It comes from the Christian Aidwebsite.

Opening Prayer

(inspired by Psalm 113)

God of all life,

beyond our imagining, and yet coming so close;

you refuse to leave those in need on the rubbish dump.

You give the poor a place of dignity among the powerful.

You make a home for the homeless,’

and bring joy abounding to families and communities.

 

As we gather to celebrate and give thanks

for your harvest of blessing,

may we live within your reality,

share your vision,

and do your will,

that the whole earth may echo your glory. Amen.

~ from Ideas for Harvest: Worship and Prayer, posted on the Christian Aidwebsite. http://www.christianaid.org.uk/Images/Harvest-2013-prayers_tcm15-69840.pdf

 

Call to Worship: Psalm 113 from worshipblogspot*

Alleluia!

Come and praise, you servants of God!

Praise the name of Yahweh!

May God’s name be blessed

both now and forever.

From east to west, from north to south,

praise the name of Yahweh!

May God’s name be blessed

both now and forever.

Who can compare to our God?

Seated high above the nations of the earth,

God’s glory fills the skies.

May God’s name be blessed

both now and forever.

 

Call to Worship by Barb Hedges-Goettl; please give credit if using/adapting:

[One] From the rising of the sun to where it sets

[Many] Let the name of the Lord be praised, now and forevermore.

The Lord is exalted over all nations. His glory is above the heavens.

Let the name of the Lord be praised, now and forevermore.

No one is like the Lord our God, enthroned on high but reaching down to earth.

Let the name of the Lord be praised, now and forevermore.

God raises up the poor to seat them with his princes.

Let the name of the Lord be praised, now and forevermore.

God overcomes barrenness, giving fruitfulness and joy.

Let the name of the Lord be praised, now and forevermore.

 

Call to Worship Litany: Psalm 113 from worshipblogspot*

Praise the Lord!

Yes, give praise, O servants of the Lord.
Praise the name of the Lord!

Blessed be the name of the Lord
now and forever.

 

Everywhere—from east to west—
praise the name of the Lord.

For the Lord is high above the nations;
his glory is higher than the heavens.

Blessed be the name of the Lord
now and forever.

 

Who can be compared with the Lord our God,
who is enthroned on high?
He stoops to look down
on heaven and on earth.
He lifts the poor from the dust
and the needy from the garbage dump.
He sets them among princes,
even the princes of his own people!
He gives the childless woman a family,
making her a happy mother.

Praise the Lord!

Blessed be the name of the Lord                                                                                                      now and forever.

PRAYER*  https://www.theologyofwork.org/the-high-calling/condescending-godYou are free to share (to copy, distribute and transmit the work), and remix (to adapt the work),  under the condition that you must give appropriate credit to The High Calling, provide a link to the license, and indicate if changes were made. You should not suggest in any way that The High Calling or Theology of Work endorses you or your use of the work.

Gracious Lord, you are, indeed, enthroned above the highest heaven. You are great beyond greatness, glorious beyond glory. All praise be to you for your majesty and power and sovereignty!

Yet, in love and mercy, you look down upon us. And not only look, but reach down to help us. And not only reach, but come down to be with us in Jesus. And not only share life with us, but take our sin and bear it. How wonderful you are!

Thank you, dear Lord, for all the times you have reached down to help me. How good you are, how gracious and kind! May I live in the confidence of your grace today, giving it away to others.

In the name of Jesus, who humbled himself, Amen.

 

CONFESSION OF SIN  by Barb Hedges-Goettl. Please give credit if using/adapting for use.

*Call to Confession

For most of us, there are times when we do think too highly of ourselves. But sometimes we sin on the other side, thinking ourselves too lowly or unfit for God to care for us. But God loves us anyway. Let us confess our need to understand ourselves as created in God’s image.

*Prayer of Confession:

Although you created us and called us “very good,” sometimes we don’t believe it. We know our failings and shortfalls so well. We are afraid that you cannot still love us. But you know us for who we truly are. You know the places and spaces where we fall short. Forgive us for not trusting your love and forgiveness. Remake us so that we are more and more your people. (Silent confession)

Assurance of Pardon (Romans 5:6, 8 The Message)                                                                        Christ arrives right on time to save us. He didn’t, and doesn’t, wait for us to get ready. God in Christ put his love on the line, giving himself as a sacrifice when we were far too weak and rebellious to even do anything to get ourselves ready. Thanks be to God for this Good News: In Jesus Christ, we are forgiven

CONFESSION OF FAITH from PC(USA) Brief Statement of Faith (1983)

We trust in God, whom Jesus called Abba, Father.

In sovereign love God created the world good

and makes everyone equally in God’s image,

male and female, of every race and people,

to live as one community.

But we rebel against God; we hide from our Creator.

Ignoring God’s commandments.

we violate the image of God in others and ourselves,

accept lies as truth, exploit neighbor and nature,

and threaten death to the planet entrusted to our care.

 

We deserve God’s condemnation.

Yet God acts with justice and mercy to redeem creation.

In everlasting love,

the God of Abraham and Sarah chose a covenant people

to bless all families of the earth.

Hearing their cry, God delivered the children of Israel

from the house of bondage.

 

Loving us still,

God makes us heirs with Christ of the covenant.

Like a mother who will not forsake her nursing child,

like a father who runs to welcome the prodigal home,

God is faithful still.

 

Therefore, with believers in every time and place,

we rejoice that nothing in life or in death

can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Amen.

CHILDREN’S SERMON*

http://worshipingwithchildren.blogspot.com/2013/08/year-c-proper-20-25th-sunday-in.html

Psalm 113

The psalmis praises the high God who leans over to lift the poor. Either point this out verbally by going through the psalm finding all the high, low, and lifting words before reading it.  Or, line out the psalm with hand motions.  The latter is best done with the whole congregation but could be presented by a rehearsed children’s class who have been invited to be worship leaders by acting it out as you read it.

Psalm 113 with Motions

Praise the Lord!

Arms outstretched palms turned up

You servants of the Lord, praise his name!
Arms reaching out to the congregation

May his name be praised now and for ever.
Repeat outstretched arms with palms turned up.

From the east to the west praise the name of the Lord!

Point to the east, then arc arm to the west

The Lord rules over all nations; his glory is above the heavens.

      Bent arms out to the sides in an expression of power

There is no one like the Lord our God.
      Pointing up with one hand as in a teaching position

 

He lives in the heights above,

Look up and reach your arms overhead

but he bends down to see the heavens and the earth.

Lean over to look down moving your arms out to the 
                  side

He raises the poor from the dust;

Still leaning over cup your hands as if scooping up people 
      below.  

he lifts the needy from their misery
raise your cupped hands a little

 

and makes them companions of princes,

raise your cupped hands to shoulder height

the princes of his people.

      Open cupped hands and reach out to your sides as if holding hands

 

He honours the childless wife in her home;

Hold arms down at your sides

he makes her happy by giving her children.

Rock a baby in your arms

 

Praise the Lord!

Raise hands in traditional praise position

SERMON/ORDER OF WORSHP

https://www.crcna.org/resources/church-resources/reading-sermons/god-small-things

Order of Worship

GOD GATHERS US FOR WORSHIP

Welcome and Announcements

Mutual Greeting

Call to Worship:  Psalm 150

Opening Song: “Let All Things Now Living” PsH #453

God’s Greeting:  “Grace, mercy and peace be to us all in the name of the Father,

and the Son and the Holy Spirit.  Amen.”

Song of Praise:  “How Great Thou Art” PsH # 483

SERVICE OF RECONCILIATION

Prayer of Confession

Assurance of Pardon:  Psalm 130: 7,8

God’s Law:  Exodus 20:  1-17

Congregational Prayer

Offering

WE HEAR THE WORD

Hymn of Preparation:  “The Heavens Declare Your Glory” PsH # 429

Prayer for Illumination

Scripture Reading:  Psalm 113

Sermon:  “God of Small Things”

Prayer of Application:  “Father God, although we are so small, we praise you for seeing
us, caring for us, and calling each of us by name.   Help our lives to be a never-ending
chorus of praise to you and help that praise to be so contagious, that others will want to
join their voices to our voices and to the voice of all creation in praising you, from
whom all blessings flow!   Amen.”

Hymn of Response: “All Creatures of Our God and King” PsH # 431

WE DEPART TO SERVE

Benediction:  “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God the Father, in the
fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with us all.   Amen.”

Doxology:  “Praise God, from Whom all Blessings Flow”  PsH # 638

 

EXEGETICAL RESOURCES

https://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=2963 Situates the psalm within the psalter and the Bible itself and briefly addresses the theme of barrenness*

https://www.theologyofwork.org/the-high-calling/condescending-god God’s condescension as a positive; includes Philippians 2*

https://www.theologyofwork.org/the-high-calling/how-does-god-lift-poor-and-needy

Reflection on God lowering Godself in Psalm 113 explores how God lifts the poor and needy*

http://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=1765 From the folks at Working Preacher but from the RCL use of the Psalm, this commentary addresses the literary structure and repeated phrases of the psalm, incl. the “name” in Hebrew scripture; Also refers to Ex. 3:7-8: God’s promise of a homeland to Israel and 1 Samuel 2:2,5,8: Hannah’s Song.*

http://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=673 Also from the RCL side from Working Preacher. Addresses the poetic/dynamic, arts-related nature of the psalms, then this particular psalm as championing those in poverty, need and childlessness and promising them a day of justice. Mentions “prayer without ceasing” (I Thessalonians 5:17).*

http://www.word-sunday.com/Files/Psalms/113.html gives a scholarly view of the historical context of this psalm in Israel’s life. Although the NL proposes Psalm 113 as an example of Brueggemann’s category of “Orientation: When life is stable and the world seems trustworthy,” the context instead may be that of displacement and thus disorientation. One could use this to discuss what it means to be a poor and marginalized church that an identify with the poor and the barren one instead of a rich and mainstream church that is more likely to identify elsewhere.

https://www.sacred-texts.com/chr/calvin/cc11/cc11021.htm Calvin’s commentary on Ps. 113

https://www.preceptaustin.org/psalm_113_commentary  Compendium of various commentaries on Psalm 113; includes cross-references, some word study, some hymns.

https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tpc/psalms-113.html Access to various resources on the psalm; site itself is on “conservative” side

https://enduringword.com/bible-commentary/psalm-113/   Verse by verse commentary

https://www.christianity.com/bible/commentary.php?com=spur&b=19&c=113 Charles H. Spurgeon’s verse by verse commentary.

https://www.biblestudytools.com/commentaries/matthew-henry-complete/psalms/113.html Matthew Henry’s verse by verse commentary

http://www.env-steward.com/lectionary/lectc/c-ep3-ps.htm A commentary from the perspective of stewardship of creation. Have to admit I didn’t really see/acknowledge this part of the psalm until reading this brief corrective. The short bit on this psalm reads:  “Psalm 113, [is] a “hymn celebrating the Lord as helper of the humble,” as our NRSV note states it. The Psalter was the first great hymnbook of God’s people, and its at-homeness within the creation is known to all. Even here, where the focus is on raising up the poor and lifting the needy, the psalmist thinks of their Lord as being first the Lord of the creation (Lord of time, “from the rising of the sun to its setting,” no less than Lord of the nations with “his glory above the heavens”), the One who uses the creation to “rescue the perishing.” This Psalm, along with Psalm 114, is sung before the Jewish Passover meal. There it stands as reminder of our opportunities and obligations within both Creation and Covenant…. the bond between Creation and Covenant …enables and requires us to care for the needy by attending to our use of the gifts (not “resources” for exploitation) within the creation.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o5W1-ELwjyI Audio of Calvin’s commentary on Psalm 113:1-4. Deadly delivery.

https://worship.calvin.edu/resources/resource-library/worship-service-psalm-113/Outline & video of worship service based on Psalm 113 from Calvin Worship Institute