The Light of the World

A candlelight service that demonstrates Light overcoming darkness

(Please pick up a candle as you enter for worship)

A Dark World

Organ Prelude and Personal Meditation

Welcome and Announcements

Our Prayer for God's Presence: "O Lord, Come Quickly"
(PsH 141)

God's Greeting

Our Response: "O Come, All Ye Faithful" (refrain only)
(HB 170, PsH 340, RL 195, TH 151)

We Shudder at the Darkness of Our World:

(Church school students read the passages)

The way of the wicked is like deep darkness;
they do not know what makes them stumble.
(Proverbs 4:19)

Haunts of violence fill the dark places of the land.
(Psalm 74:20)

He deprives the leaders of the earth of their reason;
he sends them wandering through a trackless waste.
They grope in darkness with no light;
he makes them stagger like drunkards.
(Job 12:24-25)

They know nothing, they understand nothing.
They walk about in darkness;
all the foundations of the earth are shaken.
(Psalm 82:5)

Although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.
(Romans 1:21)

Our Prayer of Desperation: "Almighty Lord God" (PsH 94)

A Tiny Flame

We See the Light of God's Salvation:

(Church school students read the leader's parts)

There will be no more gloom for those who were in distress. The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned.

For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor,
Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

(Isaiah 9:1,2,6)

When the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons.
(Galatians 4:4-5)

In him was life, and that life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
(John 1:4-5,14)

Our Song of Joy: "Arise, Shine, for Your Light Is Come" (PsH 198)

(Various soloists will sing the stanzas; all join in on the refrain)

We Witness Again the Scene in Bethlehem: (Songs and drama by church school children) "Light," The Christmas Story from Luke 2, "Away in a Manger," "Amen!"

We Bring Our Worship: "Angels from the Realms of Glory"
(HB 168, PsH 354, RL 229, HB 164)

A Warming Light

Prayer for Illumination

Scripture Reading: John 8:12

Meditation: The Light of Life

Our Celebration: "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing"
(HB 163, PsH 345, RL 196, TH 168)

A Spreading Glow

Prayers for God's Light to Grow in the World Through Us

Hymn of Growing Light: "As with Gladness Men of Old"
(HB 174, PsH 358, RL 228, HB 158)

Offering

Call to Spread the Glow: "Go, Tell It on the Mountain"
(PsH 356, RL 224)

God's Blessing and Our AMEN!

Expanding the Light; "Silent Night! Holy Night!"
(HB 154, PsH 344, RL 216, TH 161)

(The church school classes will sing this hymn through once as the light of the Christ Candle is passed to our candles in a spreading radiance. After the children sing the three stanzas, we will all Join in and sing it through again)

A Moment of Silent Meditation

This service was first celebrated on December 24,1989, by the First Christian Reformed Church of London, Ontario.

Hymns in this service were selected from the following hymnals: The Hymnbook (HB), Psalter Hymnal (PsH), Rejoice in the Lord (RL), Trinity Hymnal (TH).