Worship Helps for Christ the King Sunday
Artwork: The Ancient of Days
Worship Theme: Never could there be a king like Christ, our king. Beyond all comparison is the rule he exercises in time and in eternity. Incomparably great therefore is also our joy in worshiping him even now as we await his triumphant return to transform our worship in faith and under the cross to worship in sight and in glory.
Old Testament: Daniel 7:13-14 “In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence. 14 He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all peoples, nations and men of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed.”
1. Who is the “Ancient of Days” mentioned in verse 13?
2. According to verse 14, what did Jesus receive?
Epistle: Revelation 1:4b-8 Grace and peace to you from him who is, and who was, and who is to come, and from the seven spirits before his throne, 5 and from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood, 6 and has made us to be a kingdom and priests to serve his God and Father-- to him be glory and power for ever and ever! Amen. 7 Look, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him; and all the peoples of the earth will mourn because of him. So shall it be! Amen. 8 "I am the Alpha and the Omega," says the Lord God, "who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty."
3. According to verses five and six, what has Jesus our King done for us?
4. Verse seven tells us that our King is coming with the clouds and everyone will see him. What is he coming to do?
5. What does it mean that Jesus our King is the “Alpha and the Omega”?
Gospel: John 18:33-37 Pilate then went back inside the palace, summoned Jesus and asked him, "Are you the king of the Jews?" 34 "Is that your own idea," Jesus asked, "or did others talk to you about me?" 35 "Am I a Jew?" Pilate replied. "It was your people and your chief priests who handed you over to me. What is it you have done?" 36 Jesus said, "My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jews. But now my kingdom is from another place." 37 "You are a king, then!" said Pilate. Jesus answered, "You are right in saying I am a king. In fact, for this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me."
6. How is Jesus different from the kings of this world?
1. The “Ancient of Days” is God the Father. The name “Ancient of Days” refers to the fact that he has existed from all eternity.
2. Having humbled himself to pay for the sins of the world, God the Father exalted Jesus once again to his rightful position as King of Kings. He received authority, glory and power. He receives the praise and worship that is his alone. His kingship and almighty power will never end.
3. Our King has freed us from sin by his blood. He has made us citizens of his heavenly kingdom. He has made us priests who have the right to approach him and serve him. To him be glory and power forever and ever!
4. He is coming to judge the living and the dead. Those who rejected him and continue to reject him will see him. He will send them to their eternal punishment in hell. He will then take us, his faithful subjects to be with him forever in his heavenly kingdom.
5. The letters Alpha and Omega are the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet. Jesus, our King, is the beginning and the end. He is eternal.
6. His kingdom is not of this world. Jesus is the king and ruler of all things in this world and the next. His kingdom will have no end. Geographical borders do not bind his subjects. Those on the side of truth, i.e., those that believe in Jesus are citizens of his kingdom. Jesus, our King, offered the ultimate sacrifice by dying on the cross in order to win for us salvation. As our King he offered his life in humble service.
I can’t wait to be part of that crowd in heaven that knows exactly how it will spend its time and energy—worshiping the one and only Son of Man! There are days when it feels like that moment is so far away—too far away. Even as I wait, he rules. He reigns. His rule is eternal. His kingdom can’t ever be destroyed. I can’t wait to live in that place where I will manage my time and gifts perfectly!
The Church is defined by the Third Article of the Creed, which teaches us to believe that there is a holy Catholic Church. The wicked indeed are not a holy Church. The words that follow, namely, “the communion of saints,” seems to be added in order to explain what the Church signifies: the congregation of saints, who have with each other the fellowship of the same Gospel or doctrine and the same Holy Spirit, who sanctifies, and governs their hearts.
This article has been presented for a necessary reason. We see the infinite dangers that threaten the destruction of the Church. In the Church itself, the number of the wicked who oppress it is too high to count. Therefore, this article in the Creed shows us these consolations in order that we may not despair, but may know that the Church will remain ‹until the end of the world›. No matter how great the multitude of the wicked is, we may know that the Church still exists and Christ provides those gifts He has promised to the Church—to forgive sins, to hear prayer, to give the Holy Spirit. It says Church catholic, in order that we may not understand the Church to be an outward government of certain nations. Rather, the Church is people scattered throughout the whole world. They agree about the Gospel and have the same Christ, the same Holy Spirit, and the same Sacraments... – Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Articles VII & VII, The Church (paragraphs 7-10)