Welcome & Invitation to Worship
‘O Lord, let your ear be attentive to the prayer of your servant, and to the prayer of your servants who delight in revering your name.’ – Nehemiah 1:11
Song of Worship
Psalm 8:1 tells us: ‘Our Lord and ruler, your name is wonderful everywhere on earth! You let your glory be seen in the heavens above.’
ALMIGHTY and everlasting God, who hast given unto us thy servants grace, by the confession of a true faith to acknowledge the glory of the eternal Trinity, and in the power of the Divine Majesty to worship the Unity: We beseech thee, that thou wouldest keep us stedfast in this faith, and evermore defend us from all adversities, who livest and reignest, one God, world without end. Amen.
‘How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God! Therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of your wings.’ – Psalm 36:7
Today is Trinity Sunday, so the activity sheet covers both topics. You may find the DICE questions useful to chat about the bible passage together.
The Prisoners, the earthquake and the midnight song.
A true story about how God used people to save people
Bible Reading – Acts 16:16-40 (The Message)
Paul and Silas in Prison
16-18 One day, on our way to the place of prayer, a slave girl ran into us. She was a psychic and, with her fortunetelling, made a lot of money for the people who owned her. She started following Paul around, calling everyone’s attention to us by yelling out, “These men are working for the Most High God. They’re laying out the road of salvation for you!” She did this for a number of days until Paul, finally fed up with her, turned and commanded the spirit that possessed her, “Out! In the name of Jesus Christ, get out of her!” And it was gone, just like that.
19-22 When her owners saw that their lucrative little business was suddenly bankrupt, they went after Paul and Silas, roughed them up and dragged them into the market square. Then the police arrested them and pulled them into a court with the accusation, “These men are disturbing the peace—dangerous Jewish agitators subverting our Roman law and order.” By this time the crowd had turned into a restless mob out for blood.
22-24 The judges went along with the mob, had Paul and Silas’s clothes ripped off and ordered a public beating. After beating them black-and-blue, they threw them into jail, telling the jail-keeper to put them under heavy guard so there would be no chance of escape. He did just that—threw them into the maximum security cell in the jail and clamped leg irons on them.
25-26 Along about midnight, Paul and Silas were at prayer and singing a robust hymn to God. The other prisoners couldn’t believe their ears. Then, without warning, a huge earthquake! The jailhouse tottered, every door flew open, all the prisoners were loose.
27-28 Startled from sleep, the jailer saw all the doors swinging loose on their hinges. Assuming that all the prisoners had escaped, he pulled out his sword and was about to do himself in, figuring he was as good as dead anyway, when Paul stopped him: “Don’t do that! We’re all still here! Nobody’s run away!”
29-31 The jailer got a torch and ran inside. Badly shaken, he collapsed in front of Paul and Silas. He led them out of the jail and asked, “Sirs, what do I have to do to be saved, to really live?” They said, “Put your entire trust in the Master Jesus. Then you’ll live as you were meant to live—and everyone in your house included!”
32-34 They went on to spell out in detail the story of the Master—the entire family got in on this part. They never did get to bed that night. The jailer made them feel at home, dressed their wounds, and then—he couldn’t wait till morning!—was baptised, he and everyone in his family. There in his home, he had food set out for a festive meal. It was a night to remember: He and his entire family had put their trust in God; everyone in the house was in on the celebration.
35-36 At daybreak, the court judges sent officers with the instructions, “Release these men.” The jailer gave Paul the message, “The judges sent word that you’re free to go on your way. Congratulations! Go in peace!”
37 But Paul wouldn’t budge. He told the officers, “They beat us up in public and threw us in jail, Roman citizens in good standing! And now they want to get us out of the way on the sly without anyone knowing? Nothing doing! If they want us out of here, let them come themselves and lead us out in broad daylight.”
38-40 When the officers reported this, the judges panicked. They had no idea that Paul and Silas were Roman citizens. They hurried over and apologised, personally escorted them from the jail, and then asked them if they wouldn’t please leave the city. Walking out of the jail, Paul and Silas went straight to Lydia’s house, saw their friends again, encouraged them in the faith, and only then went on their way.
Song of Worship
‘God so loved the world so much that he gave his one and only son so that WHOEVER believes in him may not be lost, but have eternal life.’ John 3:16 Jesus you alone deserve the highest praise…. you are the giver of life..
Prepared by Jane Fulford.
As we have been following Thy Kingdom Come recently I am using the New Zealand version of the Lord’s Prayer to wrap around the prayers. If you are using the sound link please join in the words in bold as we pray.
Let us pray:
Lord we seek your guiding and blessing as we worship you. We give thanks
for who you are. You are the Lord and you reign on high. You call us as your church and people to proclaim your love and truths in the way we live and act.
Our Father, The One who takes responsibility for us as family, The One who cannot do anything but the loving thing, Hallowed be your name. May we reverence in thought and word and deed your name, your character, May we see as holy the very nature of who you are.
We pray for Britain and the nations of the world that men may see each other as made in your image. In so many places there is war, unrest and
destruction. We bring to you those who are in jail for their faith, those who are falsely accused, the innocent, those struggling to be heard and for those working to bring truth and justice to all. We pray that as all men are created in your image, whether black, brown or white that each may be treated by all men, governments and us as equals.
Your kingdom come, Your kingdom of peace, justice, wholeness and abundance. May it come because we seek it above all else, And put it in our prayers where Jesus did, first in consideration and allegiance.
We pray for all who are serving you in sharing the good news of Jesus
wherever they may be; for the Ray’s working with NEEMA Craft to produce
PPE, for the work of Jean Bosco and Kimbilio continuing to work with the
children on the streets of Lubumbashi, and for the Fletchers in Bangkok.
Your will be done, Your will for the only way that life is meant to work, Your will for kingdom life to be revealed, On earth as it is in heaven.
We pray for the farmers and agriculturists both here and throughout your world as they seek to produce and provide much needed food. So much is being destroyed by drought and locusts in East Africa and South Asia causing famine. We pray the rains will come and that the plague of locusts may cease.
Give us this day our daily bread, Not bread for me alone but for everyone, your entire human family Not bread for the rest of my life but for today, For we know that when we seek first your kingdom, all these things – food, clothing, all we need – shall be added, As and when we need them.
We pray that you would take away our selfishness, greed and jealousies so
that we may have a fairer world where everyone’s needs are met and all are blessed. We pray for the work of the food banks and ours now based at
And forgive us our sins, Forgive us our desires for luxuries that make others do without necessities, Forgive us our holding onto tomorrow’s bread that should be shared today. Forgive us as we forgive others, not resenting what they have, who they are, or how you have gifted them.
We lift before the Lord those who are sick and suffering with Coronavirus and other illnesses, both mental and physical. (Take a short silence to name folk). Father send your healing and restoration as we pray.
Lead us not into temptation but away from evil, Guide us, all of us, until evil is no longer a temptation for us.
Help us to listen, to hear and to share your love.
For yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory, You still rule, now, in our world today, You rule with kingdom power and kingdom glory. Amen.
Let’s use these words to close our prayers
Father we adore you, Father we adore you, Jesus we adore you, Jesus we adore you, Spirit we adore you. Spirit we adore you, Lay our lives before you; how we love you; take us and use us to share your love - Amen.
“Jesus on the Water at St Faith’s Church, Rotorua, NZ”
Song of Worship
When we think of all that God has done for us through Jesus’ death and resurrection… freedom, forgiveness, mercy, unending love, amazing grace…
‘Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.’ – 2 Corinthians 3:17
God, you are everything to us, giving us life, filling us with love, and setting us free from sin that we might find life in you. Accept the work of our hands this day, take our lives, give us your peace and renew us in the service of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Thank you for joining us for this week’s worship at home! Time for conversations and prayer will continue on our church’s Slack channel. Let us know what you’ve learned or what bits you enjoyed! If you’re not yet a part of Slack, you can request to join the group by clicking here.