Zion United Methodist Church

ASH WEDNESDAY SERVICE

FEBRUARY 14, 2018     6:30 PM ASH WEDNESDAY SERVICE

WELCOME — Pastor Randy

PRELUDE —  "Lord, Who Throughout These Forty Days"   arr. Willan

*CALL TO WORSHIP

Pastor:  Sinful as we are, we come to worship our Lord, because we know He will receive us.

People:  We are like the sick who need a doctor, desiring Jesus to heal our lives.

Pastor:  Knowing that we are sinners, we come with the expectation that Jesus will forgive us and make us whole.

People:  We are unworthy to be in our Lord's presence; but we need His love, and believe He wants to share it with us.

*HYMN — "Nothing But The Blood"  #337

* UNISON PRAYER

Gracious Father, who sent your Son to break through the barrier between sinners and your love; Come into our lives with your healing and forgiving power; that we may be made whole by the cleansing presence of our Lord Jesus Christ, in whose name we pray. Amen.

EVENING PRAYER — Pastor Randy

Sharing Our Praises & Prayers

The Church in Prayer

The Lord's Prayer (using debts)

THE OFFERTORY — "Savior, Redeemer Of My Soul'"   Dean-Longhurst

Presentation of God's Tithe   (Guests, please consider the welcome card your offering)

* The Doxology

* Prayer of Dedication

*HYMN — "Pass Me Not"  #489

SPECIAL MUSIC    "Cross of Jesus, Cross of Sorrow"     Senior Choir

SCRIPTURE — Mark 9: 14-29 

MESSAGE — "The Desperate Father and the Uncertainty of Faith"  Pastor Randy

IMPOSITION OF ASHES

The congregation is invited to come forward to receive the mark of the cross.

Repent and believe the Gospel!

*HYMN — "My Faith Looks Up to Thee"  #539

*BENEDICTION — Pastor Randy

*POSTLUDE — "Lenten Hymn" 

The imposition of ashes on the foreheads of Christians is an ancient Christian practice, going back at least to the 10th century. Biblically, ashes are a symbols of purification and penitence  (see Numbers  19:9, 17; Hebrews 9:13; Jonah 3:6; Matthew 11:21, and Luke 10:13 ).  In the  early church, people who had been separated from the church because of serious sins might seek to be re-admitted to the fellowship by observing a formal period of penitence during Lent. These people were generally sprinkled with ashes or given rough garments sprinkled with ashes as a sign of their sorrow for their sin. Beginning in the tenth century, the observance of Ash Wed-nesday became a general rite for the church. The ashes, which were a symbol of purification in  the Old Testament, remind us that we are mortal. In many churches the ashes are made by burning the palms from the previous year's Palm Sunday. Ashes are placed on the forehead, usually in the sign of a cross, in a ritual known as the Imposition of Ashes. As the ashes are placed on the forehead, words such as these are spoken:

"Repent, and believe the Gospel!"