[Did you miss last Sunday’s services? They can still be found at Worship Archive – March 14th 2021.]
Sunday Services from Connexion for March 21st 2021:
Sunday Services from Hillside Circuit for March 21st 2021:
Theme: A new covenant
Occasion: Fifth Sunday in Lent:
Jeremiah 31: 31-34
Hebrews 5: 5-10
John 12: 20-33
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Here are the songs for Sunday morning service. Click or tap on a song to open it in YouTube, or go to the Songs for worship webpage to find them embedded.
Beloved and blessed.
Jesus, keep me near the cross.
He lifted me.
You can listen and join in with prayers from the English Methodist Service Book. They can be found at the Prayers for worship webpage.
[Click or tap here to jump down the page to find the text version of the above message so that you can read it for yourself.]
Audio message for Hillside Circuit on March 21st 2021 in Shona, with Mr Shingirai Chifamba will be posted here later, but meanwhile see below:
[Click or tap here to jump down the page to find the text version of the message in Shona so that you can read it for yourself.]
1 You are kind, God! Please have pity on me.
You are always merciful! Please wipe away my sins.
2 Wash me clean from all of my sin and guilt.
3 I know about my sins,
and I cannot forget my terrible guilt.
4 You are really the one I have sinned against;
I have disobeyed you and have done wrong.
So it is right and fair for you
to correct and punish me.
5 I have sinned and done wrong since the day I was born.
6 But you want complete honesty,
so teach me true wisdom.
7 Wash me with hyssop
until I am clean and whiter than snow.
8 Let me be happy and joyful!
You crushed my bones, now let them celebrate.
9 Turn your eyes from my sin and cover my guilt.
10 Create pure thoughts in me
and make me faithful again.
11 Don’t chase me away from you
or take your Holy Spirit away from me.
12 Make me as happy as you did when you saved me;
make me want to obey!
31 The LORD said:
The time will surely come when I will make a new agreement with the people of Israel and Judah. 32 It will be different from the agreement I made with their ancestors when I led them out of Egypt. Although I was their God, they broke that agreement.
33 Here is the new agreement that I, the LORD, will make with the people of Israel:
“I will write my laws on their hearts and minds.
I will be their God, and they will be my people.
34 “No longer will they have to teach one another to obey me. I, the LORD, promise that all of them will obey me, ordinary people and rulers alike. I will forgive their sins and forget the evil things they have done.”
5 That is how it was with Christ. He became a high priest, but not just because he wanted the honour of being one. It was God who told him,
“You are my Son, because today
I have become your Father!”
6 In another place, God says,
“You are a priest forever
just like Melchizedek.”
7 God had the power to save Jesus from death. And while Jesus was on earth, he begged God with loud crying and tears to save him. He truly worshipped God, and God listened to his prayers. 8 Jesus is God’s own Son, but still he had to suffer before he could learn what it really means to obey God. 9 Suffering made Jesus perfect, and now he can save forever all who obey him. 10 This is because God chose him to be a high priest like Melchizedek.
20 Some Greeks had gone to Jerusalem to worship during Passover. 21 Philip from Bethsaida in Galilee was there too. So they went to him and said, “Sir, we would like to meet Jesus.” 22 Philip told Andrew. Then the two of them went to Jesus and told him.
The time has come for the Son of Man to be given his glory. 24 I tell you for certain that a grain of wheat that falls on the ground will never be more than one grain unless it dies. But if it dies, it will produce lots of wheat. 25 If you love your life, you will lose it. If you give it up in this world, you will be given eternal life. 26 If you serve me, you must go with me. My servants will be with me wherever I am. If you serve me, my Father will honour you.
27 Now I am deeply troubled, and I don’t know what to say. But I must not ask my Father to keep me from this time of suffering. In fact, I came into the world to suffer. 28 So Father, bring glory to yourself.
A voice from heaven then said, “I have already brought glory to myself, and I will do it again!” 29 When the crowd heard the voice, some of them thought it was thunder. Others thought an angel had spoken to Jesus.
30 Then Jesus told the crowd, “That voice spoke to help you, not me. 31 This world’s people are now being judged, and the ruler of this world is already being thrown out! 32 If I am lifted up above the earth, I will make everyone want to come to me.” 33 Jesus was talking about the way he would be put to death.
Text version of message for Hillside Circuit on March 21st 2021 in English, with Dr Christine Tenga
I greet you all in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Let us pray.
Heavenly Father we thank you for this day where we can give ourselves time to listen to your word.
You are our God who gives us life. You care and provide for our spiritual and physical needs. We pray for your presence in our hearts as we listen to your word.
Forgive us our iniquities and sins.
Father God visit all who are not well and touch them with your healing hand.
I ask all this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
I will read the passage from the book of Jeremiah 31 v31 to 34.
“The time is coming,” declares the Lord, ” when I will make a covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah.
It will not be like the covenant I made with their forefathers when I took them by the hand to lead them out of Egypt, because they broke my covenant, though I was a husband to them, declares the Lord.
“This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after that time,” declares the Lord.
“I will put my law in their minds and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people.
No longer will a man teach his neighbour, or a man his brother, saying, “Know the Lord, because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest,” declares the Lord.
“For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.”
Let us pray.
May the words of my mouth and the meditation of our hearts be acceptable to you my Lord Saviour and redeemer.
Our Theme today is: A New Covenant.
What is a Covenant?
It is an agreement between 2 parties binding them to what they have agreed upon. There are conditions and consequences spelled out.
Why was there a need for a New Covenant between God and the Israelites?
The first covenant failed to achieve what it was intended for. The children of Israel disobeyed God despite having laws which were meant to guide them in their lives after they had been freed from Egypt. The covenant given at Mt. Sinai was written on a stone tablet and Moses read the laws to the people for guidance but as soon as they went on with their lives, they forgot and sinned. God had chosen Israel to be His and were to set an example to other nations for God to be known yet they failed to do God’s will and glorify Him for what He had done for them. God couldn’t abandon them. Hence a new covenant which would be effective was made. This new covenant was pointing to Salvation
for the Israelites and later all humanity where God declares that He will put the law in their minds and write it on their hearts and become their God meaning they will know him and there will be a new relationship between them. God’s people will be changed from the inside out putting the law in their hearts through his Holy Spirit. There won’t be any more need for teaching. God will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.
Sin is still here in our midst. The devil is still busy even today since the time of Adam. We are not spared. We need God to transform our hearts and minds. Our thinking and hearts desires mislead us.
How did God to save his chosen nation? He took the initiative of putting the law in their minds and writing it in their hearts so that they will be constantly reminded when they get tested and change. He forgave them the sins and never remembered them no more.
Jesus Christ was chosen to fulfil the New Covenant. He is the foundation of it. The new covenant was to include all nations. Right now we have the new covenant. All we need to do is make a fresh start, be renewed and establish a permanent relationship with God through Christ.
How is it possible for Christ to free us from our sins? Christ has the attributes to do that because while he is God he is also human. He understands the difficulties we go through which he also went through on earth. God appointed him to be a high priest to represent us. His priesthood is divine unlike that of Aaron and his descendants who also had sin. Christ had no sin although he died on the cross for our sins. Christ sacrificed for sin once for all. He was tempted but resisted to the end. His suffering and perfect obedience make Christ fit to be our saviour and High priest. We must be obedient to him in order to be saved.
Christ prayed and God heard him and saved him from death therefore he can intercede for us in prayer when we are in despair. Like Christ God can hear our prayers if we pray reverently and submissively. What is meant by Christ being perfected? He wasn’t morally imperfect but it means he was made to qualify as author of Salvation. He showed it by allowing himself to experience our suffering. When we suffer, lets look to Christ. Lets go to the throne of mercy and be saved. Christ will remain a High priest for ever in the order of Melchizedek priest of Salem. Melchizedek was said to be a Priest of the Most High God and was to remain a priest for ever, so it is the same with Jesus, he will be a priest for ever.
We must be courageous when we are tried like Jesus. When you find it a challenge to obey God, turn to Jesus and he will help you .He is willing because that is why he came to earth, to save us.
For his willingness to sacrifice for us what are we supposed to do.?
In John’s passage, when Jesus heard that some Greeks wanted to see him, he responded by a sign of a wheat seed. He was predicting his death and its significance. He would have to die in order to save many. Through his death many will believe and be saved. Gentiles would want to have a relationship with him as well as Jews. Those wanting to serve him mustn’t be afraid of suffering. Christ’s death was a great sacrifice and anyone wanting to serve him must be prepared to sacrifice their lives too. Eternal life is about sacrifice. Denying yourself, not allowing yourself to succumb to pleasure than serving, being there for others instead of being selfish. Jesus had always dreaded the hour of the cross but was obedient to glorify God. That was the only way to cast out the devil and establish his kingdom. At the cross humanity was saved from sin.
How can we stay away from sin. We need to be faithful and loyal to God’s word. We need to pray and Christ will help us. When we persevere in temptations and trials, we glorify God. The cross was the ultimate test for Christ and he overcame. But in all this, glory must be to God. Jesus never glorified himself but in God’s glory he is also glorified.
May God bless His word.
Let us pray.
We thank you Father for your word. May it renew our minds and hearts. We pray that Christ who came to save us will help us to overcome temptations so that we may remain obedient to him as we also serve him. May God’s Grace and mercy be with us always.
Text version of message for Hillside Circuit on March 21st 2021 in Shona, with Mr Shingirai Chifamba:
Kutenda vazodwa vaMwari
1 Madzimambo 17:1-16
Chinonzi kutenda vazodzwa vaMwari mukana wevachengeti wekuti wokunotora makomborero kubva kuna Mwari.Zvinhu zvese zviri munyika ndezvaJehova isu tiri vatariri.Saka pazvinhu zvitinotarira tinosungurwa kupa Mwari kubudikidza nekupa vazodza vake.Iye Mwari anotikomborera.
Kuna Madzimambo tinodzidza kuti Mwari haachengetere vazodziwa vake nevanu asi isu tisu tinowana makomborero.Eria akararakiswa nemakondo.Vane nhamo vanozvirova dundundu vachiti vachiti Vafundisi ivava kupfeka ndisu,kuona vachipenya kudai imari dzedu.Regai kuvapa muone kuti havadye here?Regedzai kuvapa muone kuti vana vavo havaendi kuchikoro here?Mwari anochengetera vazodzwa vake ega sezvaakaita panEria achipiwa zvekudzya nemakondo.Shirikadzi yeZarephati ndiyo yatobatsirwa nekuti yanga yava kufa nenzara asi kuti yakapa muzodzwa waMwari zvekudya yakakomborerwa.
Eria anoti tanga kupa ini zvekudya zvireva kuti kupa muzodziwa wamwari must be given first priority.Ngatipei zvinhu zvatinoda kupiwa.Ipawo inopfuraMari yaukatirisirwa kupiwa nemurumwe kana Mwana wako.Hatidi kungoita masiya ndaita.
Tinofanira kupa Vazodzwa vaMwari zvisinei kuti zvakaoma here or zvakapfava.Eria anonzi enda unopiwa zvekudya ivo vachiziva kuti igorw renzara.Saka isu ngatisahwande neCorona toregedza kupa Vazodzwa vaMwari.
Hongu Kereke yedu initsaure rimwe pagore sezuva rekupa vaZodwa.Asi vanoda kudya nekupfeka zuva nezuva.Hatidi kuita setsumo iya inoti nherera inogutamusi wafa Mai vayo