This Sunday’s service reverts to our first of the month sermon series based on Great Bible Stories. Today we look at 1 Kings 3: 4 – 14 looking at Solomon asking God for wisdom.
The service is designed to be used in conjunction with the order of service emailed earlier but which is also available to download here: 23 20200208 Solomon asks for wisdom 1 Kings 3 4-14(
The service is also available to join in with on YouTube.
Welcome to our service this morning, hard to comprehend that we have been doing this type of service now for 4 months. We are back to our first of the month theme today that of great stories from the bible and this morning we are looking at Solomon asking for wisdom. Very apt for our current time when we are all looking for wisdom, discernment and understanding as we all become armchair experts on COVID-19. It’s amazingly easy to make decisions retrospectively as to what we should have done but it is much more difficult to take decisions in real time with patchy or uncertain information. That’s were wisdom, discernment and guidance from God really can help us. So, isn’t it great that we have a loving God who wants to help us?
Next week Mark will return to our studies on Lamentations chapter 4.
Call to worship
4 And let endurance have its perfect effect, so that you will be perfect and complete, not deficient in anything. 5 But if anyone is deficient in wisdom, he should ask God, who gives to all generously and without reprimand, and it will be given to him. 6 But he must ask in faith without doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed around by the wind. (James 1: 4-6 NET)
Opening prayer and confession
Lord to whom shall we go? Your words are words of eternal life.
We gather this morning in all kinds of moods and from a variety of situations. Lord you know what those situations are as you know each one of us better than we know ourselves. You know what we need to hear currently. Make us ready to receive your word that will bring us abundant life in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord and saviour. Amen.
We know there are times in our lives when we have not followed God’s will for us. Let us recognise those time now and seek our father’s forgiveness. Let us say together,
Heavenly Father, we praise you for adopting us as your children and making us heirs of eternal life. In your mercy you have washed us from our sins and made us clean in your sight. Yet we still fail to love you as we should and serve you as we ought. Forgive us our sins and renew us by your grace, that we may continue to grow as members of Christ, in whom alone is our salvation. Amen.
God is slow to anger and full of compassion. He forgives all who humbly repent and trust in his Son as Saviour and Lord. There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. Amen.
Reading 1 Kings 3: 4 -14
4 The king went to Gibeon to offer sacrifices, for that was the most important high place, and Solomon offered a thousand burnt offerings on that altar. 5 At Gibeon the Lord appeared to Solomon during the night in a dream, and God said, ‘Ask for whatever you want me to give you.’
6 Solomon answered, ‘You have shown great kindness to your servant, my father David, because he was faithful to you and righteous and upright in heart. You have continued this great kindness to him and have given him a son to sit on his throne this very day.
7 ‘Now, Lord my God, you have made your servant king in place of my father David. But I am only a little child and do not know how to carry out my duties. 8 Your servant is here among the people you have chosen, a great people, too numerous to count or number. 9 So give your servant a discerning heart to govern your people and to distinguish between right and wrong. For who is able to govern this great people of yours?’
10 The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for this. 11 So God said to him, ‘Since you have asked for this and not for long life or wealth for yourself, nor have asked for the death of your enemies but for discernment in administering justice, 12 I will do what you have asked. I will give you a wise and discerning heart, so that there will never have been anyone like you, nor will there ever be. 13 Moreover, I will give you what you have not asked for – both wealth and honour – so that in your lifetime you will have no equal among kings. 14 And if you walk in obedience to me and keep my decrees and commands as David your father did, I will give you a long life.’
This is the Word of the Lord
Thanks be to God
Reflection: Solomon asks for wisdom by Mike Gibbs
Prayers of Intercession
Dear Lord, we thank you for all your people who have risked and sacrificed much to provide us with all the benefits and comforts of our modern life. Help us to encourage our young people to follow their examples and to build on their legacies so that future generations may enjoy continued progress, whether that be in healthcare; transportation; manufacturing; food production or any other of the multitude of fields they may go into.
There are places in this world where people do not feel safe. Please help us to make the world peaceful and help everyone without a safe home to find a safe place to live.
We pray for all the world’s leaders and especially our own political leaders as they struggle to address the coronavirus pandemic. For the impacts it is having on our health both physical and mental, on the economy and the job prospects for those just starting out in adult life. For the children who have lost so much schooling this year. Lord may all leaders reach out to you for wisdom so that all your bounty can be shared as needed rather than seek individual advantage.
We pray for those we know who need healing in their lives for those who are unwell in mind, body or soul.
In all the busyness and worry Lord let us not forget that God also rested and has set aside one day a week for our rest and refreshment. Lord, we thank you for our times of rest, our times of relaxation, of times when we can walk, talk with you or simply be in your presence. We ask that you help us to see that we need our relaxation just as much as we need our work and our community.
The Lord’s Prayer
Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come, your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation
but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours now and for ever. Amen.
Guide me, O Thou great Jehovah, a great Methodist favourite which I think was originally written in Welsh then translated into English. And trust me you have never heard this hymn until you have felt it lift the rafters in a Welsh chapel.
Closing prayer and blessing
Almighty God, you have given us grace to bring our prayers to you, and you promise that when two or three agree together in your name you will grant their requests. Fulfil now, Lord, our desires, and prayers, as may be best for us. Grant us in this world knowledge of your truth, and in the world to come life everlasting. Amen.
Shalom my friends. God’s peace my friends go with you now and stay with you in all that you do.
Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.
In the name of Christ, Amen.