Called to New Life

A Service for Easter

Responsive Call to Worship: Psalm 150

Praise the Lord. Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heavens.

Praise him for his acts of power; praise him for his surpassing greatness.

Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet, praise him with the harp and lyre,

praise him with timbrel and dancing, praise him with the strings and pipe,

praise him with the clash of cymbals, praise him with resounding cymbals.

Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord.

Song: “Halle, Halle, Hallelujah!” (st. 1-3) LUYH 768, GtG 591

God’s Greeting: 1 Peter 1:3-5

Mutual Greeting

Song: “Halle, Halle, Hallelujah” (st. 4)

Profession of Faith: Heidelberg Catechism Lord’s Day 17

How does Christ’s resurrection benefit us?

First, by his resurrection he has overcome death, so that he might make us share in the righteousness he won for us by his death.

Second, by his power we too are already now resurrected to a new life.

Third, Christ’s resurrection is a guarantee of our glorious resurrection.

Song: “I Am the Bread of Life” (st. 1, 3, 4) GtG 522, LUYH 842, SNC 152, WR 703


Easter Lessons & Hymns


First Lesson: Resurrection Narrative

from The Jesus Storybook Bible (pp. 310-313)

Song: “Alleluia, Alleluia, Give Thanks” (st. 1, 3, 5) GtG 240, PH 106, PsH 402, SWM 129, WR 291

Second Lesson: 1 Corinthians 15

Song: “Mighty to Save” LUYH 611

Third Lesson: John 20:10-18

Song: “See, What a Morning” LUYH 181

Fourth Lesson: John 20:19-31

Prayer of Confession

Risen Lord, we confess that we, like the disciples and followers, give up on hope so easily. We give up on the expectation that you will do something incredible. We forget the promises of God, even those whispered to us moments before. We want proof before we will believe and proof before we will be faithful. Forgive us for our disbelief—for seeing an empty tomb and thinking it is a cruel trick, for discovering a discarded burial cloth and still holding on to death, for hearing words of life but choosing to keep them to ourselves. Restore us, even in our unbelief, to follow you. Amen.

—adapted from Rev. Scott A. Ressman, Pastor, United Church of Rockville Centre (NY)

Fifth Lesson: John 21:1-25

Song: “I Know That My Redeemer Lives” (st. 1-3, 7) LUYH 193, TH 690, WR 414

Sixth Lesson: Colossians 3:1-4

Song: “Before the Throne of God Above” LUYH 682

Seventh Lesson: Luke 24:13-35

Morning Prayer: The Worship Sourcebook N.4.4.10

Hallelujah! Let us Celebrate the Feast.


This Table is where Jesus is recognized

in the breaking of bread,

in the sharing of a common cup

by discerning that we are his body together.

This Table is where we are filled with faith again.

This Table is where our hopes may be restored.

This Table is where the story of Scripture comes alive,

Shaping and reshaping us in the image of our host,

not a stranger but our beloved Christ.


So let us hear the story of how this sacrament began.

On the night on which Jesus was betrayed, he sat at supper with his disciples.

While they were eating, he took a piece of bread, said a blessing, broke it and gave it to them, saying: “This is my body. It is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.”

Later that evening, he took the cup, saying: “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Drink from it, all of you, in remembrance of me.”

After his body was given and his blood was shed, after he was buried three days in a borrowed tomb and risen on Easter morning, Jesus sat at another table with his disciples. There he again took the bread, blessed it and broke it and gave it to them. Then their eyes were opened and they recognized their Risen Lord among them.

Song: “Come to Us, Beloved Stranger” LUYH 207, SNC 153

*Great Prayer of Thanksgiving

The LORD be with you.

And also with you.

Lift up your hearts.

We lift them up to the LORD.

Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

It is right for us to give thanks and praise.

With joy we praise you, gracious God, for you created heaven and earth, made us in your image and kept covenant with us, even when we fell into sin.

In this Eastertide, we give you thanks for Jesus Christ, our LORD.

The one who was dead now lives!

The one who humbled himself is raised to rule over all creation!

So we join our voices with the church of all times and all places in proclaiming your praise:

Song: “Holy, Holy, Holy” GtG 559, 562, 565, 592, 595

By your Spirit, use this feast to open our eyes to Christ’s presence. Help us who recognize our Lord in the breaking of bread to see and serve him in all whose lives are broken. Give us who are fed by Jesus’ hand grace to share our bread with the hungry and with the hungry of heart. Give to us who are quenched by Jesus’ cup grace to share the cup of salvation with all who are hopeless or seeking. Gather your whole church together, O Lord, into your kingdom, where peace and justice are revealed, that we, with all your people of every language, race and nation may share the feast and receive your presence.

Through Christ, with Christ, in Christ, all honor and glory are yours forever. Amen.

Come, for all is ready.

The gifts of God for the people of God.



Blessing: from Matthew 28:16-20

Kathryn Ritsema Roelofs is a commissioned pastor in the Christian Reformed Church (CRC) and serves as a worship specialist with Thrive, a ministry of the CRC. She is also the managing director of the Worship for Workers project through Fuller Seminary. 

Meg Jenista Kuykendall has served as Pastor at the Washington DC CRC since 2012. She received her MDiv from Calvin Theological Seminary in 2008 and is pursuing a ThM in preaching from the same institution.

Reformed Worship 122 © December 2016, Calvin Institute of Christian Worship. Used by permission.