November 26- December 2 Family Worship Guide 2023

The Guide for the Week
 November 26-December 2  
2023 AD. 

Bible Passage for the Week
Proverbs 13:21-25
Philippians 4
Psalm 100

Verse to Memorize
Matthew 11:11

Catechism Questions
Q.  Who was the last prophet to foretell of Jesus Christ?
A. John the Baptist was the last and greatest of the prophets to come before Jesus. He was the forerunner of Christ who came to prepare the people to receive the Messiah.

Q.  What was the message of John the Baptist?
A.  Repent for the Kingdom of God is at hand.

People to Pray for:

Church: Trinity Presbyterian Church
                Pastor Andrew Dionne
Ministry:  Warhorn Media
Civil Magistrate: Jeffersonville City Council
                                              Evan Stoner
Notes for Parents:
Proverbs 13:21-25

Proverbs 13:21-25 teaches that obedience and disobedience to God has consequences, both earthly and heavenly. Verse 21 states, "Trouble pursues the sinner, but the righteous are rewarded with good things." This simple truth reminds us that our actions have consequences. When we choose a path contrary to God’s ways we find ourselves facing troubles. It’s not always immediate, but eventually, our choices catch up with us. Conversely, living righteously – in line with God's commandments and teachings – leads to blessings. These blessings may not always be material or immediate, but they encompass peace, joy, and fulfillment that the world cannot give.

In verses 24 and 25, the focus shifts to the importance of disciplining our children. . "Whoever spares the rod hates their children, but the one who loves their children is careful to discipline them."  Discipline, when given in love, is God’s plan for our growth. It shapes character, instills values, and prepares one for the challenges of life. Like a gardener prunes a plant to help it grow better, discipline helps us grow in the right direction. If you want your children to experience the divine blessings of righteousness mentioned in the previous verses, you must discipline them.

Finally, verse 25 tells us, "The righteous eat to their hearts' content, but the stomach of the wicked goes hungry." Righteous living, grounded in faith and obedience, leads to God’s provision and care. It doesn’t mean the absence of hard times, but it assures us of God’s presence and provision through them. In contrast, the wicked, who rely on their ways, often find themselves lacking. This proverb encourages us to trust in God’s provision, seek His righteousness, and rest in the assurance that our needs will be met.

Philippians 4
This coming week, Pastor Joseph will be preaching from the first 9 verses and so we will cover that in next weeks’s family worship guide.   This week lets focus on verses 10-13.  In these verses, the Apostle Paul thanks the Philippians for partnering with him in ministry.  They were one of the few churches which finances his missions.  The Apostle was very grateful for their love for him.  Though he made sure to make it known that ultimately whether they gave or not, God would supply.  God had taught the Apostle that he could be content whether he had much or little.   The Apostle calls it a secret that he learned.   That is the key to being content was to know that He could do all things through God who strengthens him.   Verse 13 is a verse often taken out of context.  But in context it teaches us that God will enable us to be content whether we have much or little because God is with us whichever way.  We have God and if we have God, we have all His promises.  We can find peace and happiness in this life that can’t be shaken.  It can’t be shaken because if we have Christ that we have it all.  Our suffering will be little and momentary in comparison to the eternal weight of glory.
When you have God, you have it all.   There is no need to fight and claw as the greedy and discontent do.  A man who has billions of dollars doesn’t worry about a few pennies.  We who are in Christ have infinite riches of God’s mercy to be ours for eternity.

As we begin the time of Advent and Christmas, its good to celebrate and be joyful.  But its also good to teach our children contentment.  Don’t make this time all about the gifts.  I’m not saying don’t give gifts to your children.  No, be cheerful and gracious.  Don’t be stingy.  But be wise in your gift giving.  Teach your children to love giving gifts more than getting.  On Christmas day, take your time opening gifts.  Have your children wait on the rest to open them.  Don’t rush through it.  Take it slow.  Give quality gifts rather than quantity.  And constantly be reminded that whether you have much or little, the best gift is the gift that God gave us of His Son.

Psalm 100

Psalm 100 is short—just 5 verses. It's easy to memorize and yet is potent and powerful. Look at all the imperatives in these verses—Shout, Serve, Come, Know, Enter, Give, Bless; there are seven of them. What is an imperative? It is a command. But isn't it amazing that these are the commands we are given: to Shout joyfully? Now, who in their right mind needs to be commanded to do that? The answer is yes. Shouting joyfully, serving the Lord with gladness, and coming before him with joyful singing should be natural—that is, it should flow from the hearts of God's people. How is that possible? Look at the middle imperative—know. It is the middle and, in Jewish poetry, the middle element often focuses attention. It operates as a hinge for what comes on either side. So, what are we to know? The Lord Himself is God. He is our Creator. We didn't make ourselves. We are His people and His sheep. In other words, we are to know that God is God, God is Creator, and God is our Shepherd. He is good, keeps his promises, and is faithful. And we are His.

When we reflect on who God is and then who we are in Him, then shouting, serving, singing, giving thanks, and blessing ought to flow from it. Yes, they are commands, but commands that we will want to obey.

Now consider all this in light of Sunday Morning Worship. Our time of worship should be a time of joyful singing and shouting, a time of happiness and praise. We should be serving with gladness. Therefore, brothers, as you prepare for worship—know God. Know that He is God and you are not. He made you. He appoints all things in your life. He has also called you to be part of His people. He isn't a distant God. He is your God, good and faithful, even when you are not.

Come prepared to shout, to sing, and to enter the courts of our God with thanksgiving.
Verse one teaches us to shout. When was the last time you shouted with joy to the Lord?  It is a command.

And it is a plural verb in the Hebrew meaning that this is a command for corporate worship.
Furthermore the concept here is of a victorious war cry.  It’s a loud manly shout of joy and victory.    

Verse two says Serve the Lord with Gladness There is only one right way to serve the Lord: with gladness. Yes, we are to have a holy fear, and yes, we have to recognize duty and serve even when it is inconvenient or a struggle. But rote service with a hard heart falls far short of God's standard. We are to obey God—right away, all the way, without grumbling or disputing. In other words- with gladness. This is hard work; it takes faith to serve cheerfully. Ask God to help you find happiness in your service to the Lord, not to do it from mere compulsion. Ask Him to fill you with faith, hope, and love, enabling you to serve with gladness.

How to Pray for Those we are praying for:
Trinity Presbyterian Church
Pastor Andrew Dionne
Heavenly Father,
We approach Your throne of grace today to lift up Trinity Presbyterian Church and its pastor, Andrew Dionne. We ask that You grant Pastor Dionne wisdom, strength, and courage as he shepherds Your flock.
Lord, nurture and raise up young men within this congregation to assume roles of leadership. Equip them with the knowledge, humility, and zeal necessary to serve Your purposes.
We pray for unity and purity within the fellowship of Trinity Presbyterian Church. May they stand together, united in Your truth, and maintain purity in their conduct and hearts.
Guide this congregation to worship You with genuine joy, reflecting the grace and love You have bestowed upon them.
In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.

Warhorn Media
Heavenly Father, Almighty God,
We come before You today to lift up Warhorn Media, guided by Nathan Alberson, Pastors Jake Mentzel, Ben Sulser, and Tim Bayly. Lord, we ask for Your provision in their endeavors, that they may have the financial resources needed to continue their vital work.
Grant them wisdom and discernment in selecting and producing content—books, music, and podcasts—that edifies and strengthens Your Church. Let their efforts be rooted in Your truth, spreading Your Word effectively and powerfully.
We pray for a wide and receptive audience for their podcasts. May their messages reach far and wide, touching the hearts of many, fostering growth and deepening faith.
In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.

Jeffersonville City Council  Evan Stoner
Almighty and Sovereign Lord,
In the solemnity of Your presence, we, Your humble servants, acknowledge Your dominion over the heavens and the earth. Your wisdom is unparalleled, Your power is unmatched, and Your grace is boundless, revealed through the sacrificial love of our Savior, Jesus Christ. We stand before You today to intercede for Councilman Evan Stone, recently elected to serve in Jeffersonville.
Gracious Father, we beseech You to work mightily in the heart of Evan Stone. Lead him to repentance for endorsing events that celebrate pride and practices that defy Your holy standards. May he realize the gravity of supporting that which stands contrary to Your divine will. Instill in him, O Lord, a heart that fiercely seeks after Christ, valuing eternal treasures above worldly acceptance and fleeting pleasures. Guide Councilman Stone in the ways of righteousness. Let Your Word be the lamp unto his feet, illuminating the path of truth and integrity. May his decisions and words be a reflection of his commitment to Christ, upholding Your eternal and unerring law. Bestow upon him wisdom and discernment as he navigates the complexities of governance and public duty.
We pray for his health and vigor, that he may be sustained in times of trial and refreshed when wearied by the burdens of office. Strengthen his family, fortify their bonds, and unite them under the banner of Your love. Guard them against the deceptions of the enemy and bless their home with the joy and peace that only You can bestow.
For the community of Jeffersonville, we pray that the Gospel of Jesus Christ may be powerfully proclaimed and embraced. Open their eyes to the glorious redemption offered through Jesus Christ. Soften their hearts, transform lives, and anchor families in the Gospel truth.
May Christ reign supreme in Jeffersonville, His sovereignty acknowledged in every sphere. We pray that all authority, endeavors, and individuals in this community recognize His lordship. Let Your kingdom come, Your will be done in Jeffersonville as it is in heaven. We ask this in the mighty and precious name of Jesus Christ, our Lord and King, to whom be all glory, honor, and praise, forever and ever. Amen

Church History Spotlight
Isaac Watts, Hymn Writer

25 November 1748

In the years immediately after the Protestant Reformation, non-Roman Churches in the West were divided on the question of hymns. The Lutherans and Moravians immediately began to develop a rich tradition of hymns in the vernacular. Most of those in the Calvinist tradition, on the other hand, maintained that God had provided His people with a set of inspired hymns in Holy Scripture, chiefly in the Psalms, and that it was not for us to pronounce His work incomplete or inadequate and set about to write our own. Accordingly, they wrote verse translations of the Psalms and sang these instead of hymns.

In the English Church, the theory was with the Lutherans, but the practice was with the Calvinists. The early Anglican reformers wanted very much to have English hymns in their worship, but none of them had a particle of talent when it came to writing hymns in English verse, and they had the taste and the humility to recognize that their efforts were unacceptably bad. So they refrained from writing hymns, and the Calvinists produced Psalms in verse, and these became by default the hymns used by all parties for worship in English.

The Whole Book of Psalms, published in 1562, went through 78 editions before 1600, and is called the Old Version. Only one psalm from it (as far as I know) is still in common use. It is a paraphrase of Psalm 100, sung to the tune known as "Old Hundred" or "The Doxology" ("Praise God from Whom all blessings flow").
It begins:
All people that on earth do dwell,
sing to the LORD with cheerful voice.
Him serve with mirth; His praise forth tell.
Come ye before Him and rejoice.

In 1696 Nahum Tate and Nicholas Brady produced the New Version, which was used side by side with the Old Version for many years. Hymns from the New Version which are still in use today include the four with the following first lines:
While shepherds watched their flocks by night
O 'twas a joyful sound to hear
From lowest depths of woe (or: My soul with patience waits)
As pants the hart for cooling streams

And so matters stood when, in 1674, Isaac Watts was born in Southampton. Because his family were Dissenters or Non-Conformists (i.e. Protestants who did not think that the Church of England had departed sufficiently from the beliefs and practices of Rome, and who accordingly refused to conform to it), he did not attend Oxford or Cambridge, but instead was educated at the Dissenting Academy in Stoke Newington, London, until 1694. He then began a two-year period of writing, of which more later. In 1696 he became tutor and chaplain to the family of Sir John Hartopp of Leicestershire. In 1699 he became assistant minister at Mark Lane Independent (i.e. Congregational) Chapel in London, and full pastor in 1702. Then his health failed. In 1712 he was invited to spend a week at the home of the wealthy Dissenter Sir Thomas Abney in Hertfordshire. He ended up staying there for the rest of his life, devoting himself to writing. His works included, Logic, or The Right Use of Reason in The Enquiry After Truth, a standard text at Oxford and elsewhere for several generations. His poems and songs for children were extremely popular, and became the object of parody in Alice in Wonderland (where "How doth the little busy bee improve each shining hour," became, "How doth the little crocodile improve his shining tail"). He died 25 November 1748.

Even as a small boy, Watts had a great interest in versifying. Once, during family prayers, he began to laugh. His father asked him why. He replied that he had heard a sound and opened his eyes to see a mouse climbing a rope in a corner, and had immediately thought,

      A little mouse for want of stairs
      ran up a rope to say its prayers.
His father thought this irreverent, and proceeded to administer corporal punishment, in the midst of which Isaac called out,
      Father, father, mercy take,
      and I will no more verses make.

When he was older, he complained of the bad quality of writing in the metrical Psalters of his day. His father promptly challenged him to do better, and he undertook the effort. During his lifetime he wrote about 600 hymns altogether, but most of his best efforts were turned out between his graduation from school when he was 20 and his taking a job teaching when he was 22. During these two Golden Years, hymns poured from his pen with the impetus of true genius.

Glancing at several hymnals (Anglican, Baptist, Lutheran, Methodist, Presbyterian), I find at least the following 43 hymns of his in common use today.

Many of Watts's hymns are based on psalms, though some more loosely than others.  On the other hand, some of his hymns are not straightforward verse translations of Psalms or other songs taken from the Scriptures, and for this Watts was criticized by those who thought it wrong to sing "uninspired hymns". He replied that, if we can pray to God in sentences that we have made up ourselves (instead of confining ourselves to the Our Father and other prayers taken directly from the Scriptures), then surely we can sing to God in sentences that we have made up ourselves. He added that the Psalms do not deal with specifically Christian themes except in hidden language, and that it is fitting that Christians should include in their worship open and clear proclamations of the acts of God in Christ.

Some of his most well known hymns are
Joy to the World
Alas and did my Savior Bleed
Jesus Shall Reign where’er the Sun
Am I a solder of the cross
When I survey the wondrous cross

A prayer of thanksgiving for Isaac Waats
Almighty God, who gave to your servant Isaac Watts singular gifts of rendering your praises in verse, that he might write for your Church an abundant hymns, and spiritual songs: Stir up the hearts of your people, that they may joyfully sing your praises in this life and the life to come; through your Son Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.
Upcoming Events:

Prayer Concerns:
  • Maple Manor Nursing Home: Prayers needed for the Maple Manor Nursing Home as they confront issues related to Covid.
  • Expectant Mothers: Special prayers requested for Shawn Crone, Brittany McKinney, Chelsea Mix, Rowina Spurgeon, and Maddie Sands.
  • The McKinney Family: No Babies yet!!! But the McKinney’s are in the midst of moving!! They could really use some help as they move and work on their new forever home 😊 Meals would ease some of the pressure. Also if there’s some handymen with some extra time on their hands this next week that would be amazing too as some repairs to the new house need to be completed. Contact Jake for that. 1-502-762-6868
Schedule Updates and Events:
  • Nursing Home Visit: December 4th.  This is a great opportunity for families to serve Christ and let their true religion (James 1) show. 
  • SKC Ladies Mug Exchange:  December 13th 6:30-8:30   What would be Christmas without giving a sister in Christ a new coffee mug to use the whole year long.   Stay tuned for more details.
  • Christmas Caroling:  December 16 and December 23.   Jingle Bells, Joy to the World, and Hot Chocolate.   Join us as we bring Christmas cheer to the neighbors surrounding the church.   Two different dates to join in the fun.
  • Genevan Pub- Book and Bottle Exchange:  December 17 4-8PM.  Join the men of Sovereign King Church as we finish up our discussion on Covenant Theology.  Bring a book and your favorite beer to exchange with the other men in a white elephant style Christmas exchange-just don’t bring Bud Lite or Your Best Life Now.
  • The King’s Men and Daughters of the King:  December 20 We are exploring the Westminster Shorter Catechism. Suitable for children aged 5 and up. Please check the student ministry page for all memorization assignments: Sovereign King Church Student Ministry.
  • SKC Academy Informational Meeting: After several years of planning, we are ready to host our first informational meeting about The Sovereign King Academy! At this meeting, Pastor Greg will share vital details about the Academy including its: mission & vision; scope and sequence; format; and projected tuition costs. The Academy will function as a cottage school (some use the term hybrid school) which is essentially a private school/homeschool hybrid. We are hoping to launch The Sovereign King Academy in the Fall of 2024 for the 2024-25 school year. The Meeting date is  Sunday, Dec. 10 @1pm. There will be food and childcare provided at both meetings for those who need it. Please register if you able to attend and let us know how many will be with you so that we can plan accordingly. Registration: Sunday, December 10, 1-3pm:
For more information and updates, please visit our website.