This liturgy will provide you with a straightforward way to hold a Service of the Word in your own home. As you worship, remember that simply following the instructions on this page will NOT create worship. Worship is an encounter with God in which we receive His gifts of forgiveness and respond with prayer and praise. The “active ingredient” of worship is faith. As you follow these instructions, your worship begins with believing that God is present and expecting that God will have something to say to you during this time.
Read the words in bold aloud. If you are fortunate to be worshiping with others, you may designate one individual the leader, and read the liturgy responsively as indicated by L: (leader) and R: (response). Some elements of this service are links to videos which will play when you click on them. Feel free to include as much or as little of the suggested music as you prefer, or to substitute live music in your home for the videos included here.
Each worshiper will need a pencil and paper during the confession.
How Will This Work?
L: In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
L: If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.
R: If we confess our sins, God is faithful and just to forgive our sins, and purify us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:8-9)
At this time, each person silently confesses his or her sin to God. Individual sins may be written (children may wish to draw) on a piece of paper. After an appropriate length of time, continue:
All: Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions. Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin. For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me… Hide your face from my sins and blot out all my iniquity. Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. (Psalm 51:1-3)
Scratch out the sins that have been confessed on paper, drawing a cross over the whole page. Then speak out loud the sure and certain word of God that follows:
L: Hear the word of God that promises His forgiveness to us.
L: The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love. He will not always accuse, nor will he harbor his anger forever; he does not treat us as our sins deserve, or repay us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us. (Psalm 103:8-12)
They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe, and many wonders and miraculous signs were done by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.
Statement of Faith
The First Article of the Creed with Luther’s Explanation
All: I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth.
L: What does this mean?
All: I believe that God has made me and all creatures; that He has given me my body and soul, eyes, ears, and all my members, my reason and all my senses, and still takes care of them. He also gives me clothing and shoes, food and drink, house and home, wife and children, land, animals, and all I have. He richly and daily provides me with all that I need to support this body and life. He defends me against all danger and guards and protects me from all evil. All this He does only out of fatherly, divine goodness and mercy, without any merit or worthiness in me. For all this it is my duty to thank and praise, serve and obey Him.
L: This is most certainly true.
Sermon & Reflection
- How is our life right now similar to the lives of the first Christians? How is it different?
- What can we do to remain devoted to…
- the Word of God?
- fellowship with other believers?
- receiving the forgiveness that Jesus earned for us?
Never forget: Your relationship with God is centered not in what you sacrifice for God, but in the sacrifice that God made for you!
In addition to these petitions, bring your own requests to God at this time.
L: Gracious Father, a lot of changes have been taking place. Changes affecting our lives in numerous ways. Though we’re not together in our sanctuary we thank you for the opportunity to still gather in our homes, to have those intimate encounters with you through your word and in prayer. Through this time, Lord, we ask for your continued presence to sustain us in our faith and to share in the same joy as the apostles. The joy given through the death and resurrection of your son, Jesus. Lord, in your mercy
R: hear our prayer.
L: Merciful God, throughout our lives we experience uncertainty. And at this time many around us have been gripped with fear and anxiety caused by the COVID-19 epidemic. We ask you, now Lord, to calm their anxieties, calm their nerves and direct them to the peace and promises given through your son Jesus, who has given us the promise of new life with no more fear and no more anxiety. Lord, in your mercy,
R: hear our prayer.
L: Loving Lord, you are the great physician. In your son’s earthly ministry, he healed the lame and cured the blind. And we ask you now to bring that same healing to all those who are sick. Continue to walk with them Lord, sustain them in their faith and have them cling to the peace, which you alone give. Lord, in your mercy,
R: hear our prayer.
L: Gracious Lord, we thank you for sending your servants into your harvest field, both at home and abroad. We thank you, especially, for David, for Rachel, and for Roger and for Amy. Lord, we ask that you continually work through them. That they be your hands and feet as well as a light to a world that is constantly walking in darkness. Share your gospel through them Lord and may other people share in that same joy of your salvation which you alone give through your son Jesus. Lord, in your mercy,
R: hear our prayer.
ALL: Our Father who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name,
thy kingdom come,
thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread;
and forgive us our trespasses
as we forgive those
who trespass against us;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom
and the power and the glory
forever and ever. Amen
L: May the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever.
R: Amen. (Hebrews 13:20-21)
If you are a member of another congregation, we are delighted that we were able to provide you with the opportunity to worship in your home today. Please honor God by continuing to support your home congregation during these uncertain times.
Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, copyright 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved.