easter 2017

Liturgy 4-16-2017

This blog is a record of the call to worship, Scripture readings, and prayers from our Sunday liturgies.  If you are interested in writing something for the liturgy, or if you have a concern about any aspect of our liturgy, please email jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Call to Worship

We have gathered to bear witness
to the story that changes every story

when the women came to mourn
they found their Hope raised anew

we have gathered to speak again
the wonder that echoes off the edge of time

Christ has died
But death could not hold him
God set a Light in the darkness
And the darkness did not overcome it

Christ is Risen

He is Risen indeed
and now the reign of death
has fallen to Resurrection




Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
his mercy endures for ever.
Let Israel now proclaim,
"His mercy endures for ever."

The Lord is my strength and my song,
and he has become my salvation.
There is a sound of exultation and victory
in the tents of the righteous:
"The right hand of the Lord has triumphed!
the right hand of the Lord is exalted!
the right hand of the Lord has triumphed!"

I shall not die, but live,
and declare the works of the Lord.
The Lord has punished me sorely,
but he did not hand me over to death.
Open for me the gates of righteousness;
I will enter them;
I will offer thanks to the Lord.

"This is the gate of the Lord;
he who is righteous may enter."

I will give thanks to you, for you answered me
and have become my salvation.
The same stone which the builders rejected
has become the chief cornerstone.
This is the Lord's doing,
and it is marvelous in our eyes.
On this day the Lord has acted;
we will rejoice and be glad in it.

Matthew 28:1-10

After the sabbath, as the first day of the week was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. And suddenly there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord, descending from heaven, came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. For fear of him the guards shook and became like dead men.

But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid; I know that you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for he has been raised, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples, ‘He has been raised from the dead, and indeed he is going ahead of you to Galilee; there you will see him.’ This is my message for you.”

So they left the tomb quickly with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples. Suddenly Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!” And they came to him, took hold of his feet, and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me.”


This week's prayer was written by Jacob Robinson and myself:

Christ has died.  Christ is Risen.  Christ will come again.

God, we embrace this Yes that you have spoken into the world.

This word of hope that echoes off the edge of time.
This counterpoint to every word of death, oppression, and temporal power.

This word of affirmation to all things good and beautiful
This counterpoint to self-interest and control

This word of abundance
This counterpoint to all things driven by scarcity and fear.

And in embracing this Yes, we pray that you would make us into resurrection people.  People who carry your Yes in us, breathing life into death, hope into anguish, and peace into violence.

We ask this of you in the name of Jesus Christ, the Risen One, by the power of the Spirit of Life.



Setlist 4-16-2017

Yesterday was Easter Sunday, and our songs were gathered with the death and Resurrection of Jesus in mind.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics. Below the songs, you can find recordings from Sunday morning of a few of them, and below the recordings, there is an example of one way you might think of these songs in light of this week's theme. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.


In the Night by Andrew Peterson

Death In His Grave by John Mark McMillan

Mystery by Jameson McGregor (adapted from Charlie Hall)

Hope by Jameson McGregor

Wayward Ones by The Gladsome Light


How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

In the Night: We will be adding a piece to this song every week of Lent.  It traces a thread of struggle through the biblical narrative, ultimately building a case to hold hope in the midst of immense darkness.  We recorded a live version of this song last year, which you can download for free here.  

Death In His Grave: This song narrates the death and Resurrection of Jesus, and underscores the outcome of this Event: the death of death.  It also captures the reality-altering implications of this event for humans that Paul likens to Jesus being a second Adam.  We sang this song to step into this narrative in a more deliberate way and experience it anew.

Mystery: This is a protest song.  And Easter is a protest day.  In the Resurrection of Jesus, we have the defeat of death, yes, but we also have an empire and religious institution put to shame as their supposedly final assertion of power over the trouble-maker Jesus doesn't work.  If the power that corrupt systems of oppression carry is falsified, these systems cannot hope to stand for long.  So, the formula Christ has died, Christ is risen, Christ will come again is multi-valent, and one of those valences is of the raised-fist variety.  This was true then, and it is true now.  

Hope: This song uses the image from John of God setting a light in the darkness that the darkness did not overcome as a reference point for present hope (and interprets this image to refer to the Resurrection).  In the Resurrection, we see in action what we have hoped to be true: that God is present and active in brokenness, and is in the habit of making all things new.  And when we look back on our own lives in the moments most marred by pain, we find that they too evolved into something like broken pieces coming back together.  So when those pain-marred moments are our present moments, we can look back on the Resurrection and the resurrections we have experienced for the hope that God will raise us up again.

Wayward Ones: We sing this song every time we take communion to remind ourselves of a couple of things.  First, we are a broken people--though we are seeking to become more like Jesus, we often fail at this.  Second, Christ has given Himself for us despite our brokenness.  We take communion to remember the sacrifice of Jesus on our behalf, even though we did not, and do not, deserve it.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos.