O come, O come, Emmanuel,
all people need good news – Noël*
to give life purpose, future clear ,
and know his grace and comfort near.
Rejoice, Emmanuel has come
– the Light to shine for everyone.
O come, Emmanuel to free
from Satan’s lies and tyranny
with power to save and truth to teach
our guilt and fears your grace can reach.
Rejoice, Emmanuel …
Israel was taught to wait, prepare
– their God would come, their nature share
as man to teach, in mercy serve –
bearing the judgement we deserve.
Rejoice, Emmanuel …
All nations would be called to Him
the wonderful and glorious King,
to bow, receive abundant life
support while in this world of strife.
Rejoice, Emmanuel …
- Noël = Good News
Tune: LM+refrain, eg ‘Veni Emmanuel’ tune of the old carol, ‘O come, O come, Emmanuel’’ on which this is slightly based.
If your fears, frustrations fester
lift your heart to prayer for faith
– not a mindless, empty ritual –
finding One who rules the earth.
Read about his interventions –
speaking, coming as a man,
teaching of his real dominion,
who this universe began.
Come in prayer for he invites you,
but come humbly, honestly,
and prepared to turn from what he
shows is wrong, repentantly.
Would you really go on claiming
all you see is meaningless?
and ignore the Christ amazing
who spoke hope and righteousness?
Tune: 87 87 trochaic eg Sussex, tune of ‘May the grace of Christ our Saviour’
John 4: 1-42
Relationships many – her life was a mess,
found Jesus knew all and seemed willing to bless –
returned to the town to tell people this must
be surely Messiah, the Saviour to trust.
They went out to find him, to meet him and hear
his teaching and knowledge – and soon it was clear
that Jesus was Saviour: Samaritans, Jews
and Gentiles – for all he’d astounding good news!
Tune: 11 11 11 11
The churches are empty, and so is the tomb!
We’re longing to worship together as one,
but still we are thrilling, and each lift our voice –
whatever may happen we know, and rejoice:
for Christ is alive and hats bought us his gift
of life everlasting that heals the great rift –
from him we no longer need keep far apart –
he took all that sin which infected our heart.
Tune: 11 11 11 11
They know their Master’s voice
– that voice has safely led
each one aware he knows their name,
and by him they are fed,
They follow at his call,
and heed his every word,
they know he knows the way ahead,
and all their prayers are heard.
He glances round the stars,
far mightier is he,
and yet he cares for foolish sheep
and comforts lovingly.
“I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me.”
To Nazareth the angel came
to tell of Mary’s son who’d reign
for ever – Mary, puzzled, heard
the astonishing, amazing word –
Soon, to a child she would give birth
– the Son of God come down to earth,
and name him Jesus, Saviour-King:
God’s blessing to the world he’d bring.
‘How can this be?’ she asked – she still
was not yet married – in God’s will
his Spirit would in power great
the child miraculously create.
Humbly accepting; Joseph too
was told of what the Lord would do,
they trusted through the waiting days,
and Mary sang God’s grace and praise.
To Jesus they brought
this one they had caught
in breaking the law –
Christ came to restore
those sorry for sin,
so they could begin
a new life with Him,
For her they did not
have care, not a jot,
their aim was to trip
make Jesus to slip,
so they could detect
for law disrespect,
and undermine grace
that covers disgrace.
They all crept away,
for no-one could say
he’d never done wrong
through all his life long.
can other sins hide.
The test had spun round –
and what had they found?
He didn’t condone,
nor did he condemn;
his mission to save,
and now can forgive
if guilt we admit
desiring to quit,
rebellion to leave;
repent and receive.
Tune: 10 10 10 10 but can be sung to some 10 10 11 11 tunes eg
“If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” John 8:7
To whom to go if leaving You?
who else to know, who else can do
the needed things to wipe away
our guilt and sins so that we may
have God as Friend and Father wise
to love, defend, and wipe our eyes.
They came to see You feed and heal.
You came to be our Saviour real.
They want a King to free the land,
and do their ‘thing’ and make them grand:
not keen to hear rebukes to guide,
Your truth so clear, serve at Your side.
“You do not want to leave too, do you?” Jesus asked the twelve. Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We believe and know that you are the Holy One of God.” John 6:67-69
Tune 88 88 88 eg Melita (tune of ‘Eternal Father strong to save’ or Motzart (Isaac) (tune of ‘We have not known Thee as we ought’) or ‘Solid rock’ (tune of ‘My hope is built on nothing less’
A merry-go-round of monotony,
a chorus of cackling cacophony
– soul’s bellies a-rumbling,
and hungering, grumbling
– life colourless: strife, gloom and acrimony.
The gift that arrived that first Christmas
with promises that it could give us
what really can satisfy
– see God above ratify
– imperishable gift that’s so precious.
Amusements can give us a “sugar-rush”
– our souls need whole food that will nourish us.
We need to receive Him,
His Word to escape this world’s death-curse.
See the man whose words impressed,
see the one who all confessed
someone special, kind and good,
yet who showed you what you should
do, and so some took exception
felt no need of God’s redemption.
See the man who healed and fed
thousands from five loaves of bread,
but not willing yet to claim
forced submission to his reign,
giving time for all to ponder
who he is, this King of wonder.
See his followers, faltering, weak,
see them honour him and seek
help to stand when many slate them,
threaten, silence, murder, hate them
all because of proclamation
joyful of his free salvation.