God's Pattern for Life: The Ten Commandments: A service of rededication

This service was submitted by Ken Baker, pastor of Third Christian Reformed Church, Kalamazoo, Michigan. He writes: "After preaching a series on the Ten Commandments, I developed a liturgy for a concluding Service of Rededication. Whether as a 'wrap up' service, as in our case, or standing on its own, such a service can play a meaningful role in reinforcing the meaning of the Decalogue in our lives." The readings were taken from different "Responsive Readings of the Law" (PsH p. 1013-1018).

Prelude

"Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise" (Haan)
"Be Thou My Vision" (Young)
"Be Faithful to the Law "(Haan)

Welcome and Announcements

Hymn: "When We Walk with the Lord"PsH 548, TH 672

Opening Sentences (from Psalm 119) and Greeting Praise be to you, O Lord.
You are my portion; I have promised to obey your words.
I rejoice in following your statutes
as one rejoices in great riches.

I long for your salvation, O Lord,
and your law is my delight.
May your unfailing love come to me, O Lord,
Your salvation according to your promise.

To all who love the Lord and delight to do his will:
Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Amen.

Hymn of Praise: "With Grateful Heart My Thanks I Bring," st. 1, 3, 4 PsH 183, TH 88

Prayer for the Service

[concluded by singing "Thy Word Sheds Light upon My Path" to ROCKINGHAM 1976 PsH 249]

Meditation: "The Advantages of Pierced Ears" (Psalm 40:6-8)

Hymn of Response: "Have Thine Own Way, Lord," st. 1, 4 PsH 287, TH 688

GOD'S PATTERN FOR LIFE...WITH HIM

The First Commandment

Reader 1: You shall have no other gods before me.

Reader 2: Jesus said: "Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only."

All: For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be the glory forever!

The Second Commandment

Reader 1: You shall not make for yourself an idol.

Men: Jesus said: "God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth."

All: In Christ we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.

The Third Commandment

Reader 1: You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God.

Reader 2: Jesus said: "Do not swear at all: either by heaven, for it is God's throne; or by the earth, for it is his footstool. ... Let your 'yes' be 'yes,' and your 'no/ 'no'; anything beyond this comes from the evil one."

All: We will use the holy name of God with reverence, praising him in everything we do and say.

The Fourth Commandment

Reader 1: Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy.

Women: Jesus said: "The Sabbath was made for humankind, and not humankind for the Sabbath. So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath."

All: Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.

Hymn: "This Is the Day" PsH 241, PH 230, RL 128, TH 389

The Summary

Reader 2: The first part of the law is this great commandment:

All: That we love the Lord our God with all our heart, with all our mind, and with all our strength.

Hymn of Dedication: "Spirit of God, Who Dwells within My Heart," st. 1, 3, 5 PsH 419

GOD'S PATTERN FOR LIFE ... IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD

The Fifth Commandment

Reader 3: Honor your father and your mother.

Children: As children we will be obedient to our parents in the Lord.

Parents: As parents we will correct our children and guide them in the training and instruction of the Lord.

The Sixth Commandment

Reader 3: You shall not murder.

Reader 4: Jesus said: "Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven."

All: We will be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave us.

The Seventh Commandment

Reader 3: You shall not commit adultery.

Men: Anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.

All: We are not our own; we were bought at a price. Therefore we will honor God with our body.

The Eighth Commandment

Reader 3: You shall not steal.

Reader 4: Jesus said: "For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery... theft... These are what make a person 'unclean'."

All: We will do what we can for our neighbor's good, and work faithfully so that we may share with the poor.

The Ninth Commandment

Reader 3: You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.

Women: Jesus said: "For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks... For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned."

All: We will speak the truth with our neighbor in love, render judgments that are true and make for peace, and not devise in our hearts any evil against anyone.

The Tenth Commandment

Reader 3: You shall not covet.

Reader 4: Jesus said: "Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; for one's life does not consist in the abundance of possessions."

All: We will be content whatever our circumstances through the strength of Christ within us.

The Summary

Reader 4:The second part of the law is similar to the first:

All: We must love our neighbor as ourselves.

Hymn of Dedication: "Jesu, Jesu, Fill Us with Your Love" PsH 601, PH 367, SFL 251

Prayer of Thanksgiving

The Offering

Song of Praise: "Father, I Adore You" PsH 284, SFL 28

[sung as a round, as directed]

God's Blessing

Postlude: "This Is the Day the Lord Has Made" (Leupold)

Rev. Kenneth Baker retired from full-time pastoral ministry in 2018 after serving four churches in Canada and the U.S. He now serves as a Gallup Strengths Coach, mentor, and itinerant preacher.