A Call to Worship
Ascension Day Year C 2016
Psalms 47 and 93

We come in awe of our God, singing and praying: “...Amen. Hallelujah!”1
We come to sing and “...shout for joy all you people; Amen. Hallelujah!1

We come filled with wonder at our God, shouting: “...Amen. Hallelujah!”1
“...Holy is the most high; mighty over the earth. Amen. Hallelujah! Amen.”

We come together to marvel at the power of our God, whose royal robes
are majesty and strength, and whose reign is from “...time immemorial. You
yourself are from the everlasting past…”
We sing: “...Amen. Hallelujah!”1
“...Praise the Lord with your singing, sing God psalms for ever, God is the
monarch of all, sovereign over the earth... God for ever our Lord. Hallelujah!”
1 Amen.

Psalm 47
For the choir director: A psalm of the descendants of Korah.

1 Come, everyone! Clap your hands!
Shout to God with joyful praise!
2 For the Lord Most High is awesome.
He is the great King of all the earth.
3 He subdues the nations before us,
putting our enemies beneath our feet.
4 He chose the Promised Land as our inheritance,
the proud possession of Jacob’s descendants, whom he loves. Interlude

5 God has ascended with a mighty shout.
The Lord has ascended with trumpets blaring.
6 Sing praises to God, sing praises;
sing praises to our King, sing praises!
7 For God is the King over all the earth.
Praise him with a psalm.
8 God reigns above the nations, sitting on his holy throne.
9 The rulers of the world have gathered together
with the people of the God of Abraham.
For all the kings of the earth belong to God.
He is highly honoured everywhere.

Psalm 93

1 The Lord is king! He is robed in majesty.
indeed, the Lord is robed in majesty and armed with strength.
The world stands firm and cannot be shaken.
2 Your throne, O Lord, has stood from time immemorial.
You yourself are from the everlasting past.

3 The floods have risen up, O Lord.
The floods have roared like thunder;
the floods have lifted their pounding waves.

4 But mightier than the violent raging of the seas,
mightier than the breakers on the shore—
the Lord above is mightier than these!

5 Your royal laws cannot be changed.
Your reign, O Lord, is holy forever and ever.

Prayers of Praise
Ascension Day Year C 2016
Psalms 47 and 93

Gracious and Glorious God our King, you who are clothed in your royal robes
of power and majesty, whose cloak is radiant light; and whose only weapons
are the strength of God’s love for all your creation; we come in awe to worship
and praise you, the Mighty Ruler of all you have created past, present and future.
All creation kneels in humble worship before you, as we joyfully sing “...Amen.
1 There are no words that we know that can describe the wonder
of our God; and we are left forever breathless before the glories of the Holy One.

Holy King of all that is history, all that is in the ‘now time’; and all that is only in
our hopes and dreams, your reign as our Timeless Creating Lord is from “… the
everlasting past…” and stands “…from time immemorial…. Your reign, O Lord,
is holy forever and ever;
…and your “…royal laws cannot be changed…” We offer
to you our praises because the wonders and powers of our King are greater than
any one thing we can imagine or create with our very limited powers and knowledge.

“...Praise the Lord with your singing, sing God psalms for ever, God is the monarch
of all, sovereign over the earth... God for ever our Lord. Hallelujah!” “Clap your
hands all you nations shout for joy all you people; Amen. Hallelujah!”
1 Holy One,
the Eternal Lord and King, we have great difficulty coping with the concept of the
timelessness of our God; we who live in a world of ‘take away’ instant meals and
the swiftness of our communication systems; we are awed by the beliefs, faith and
hope that we have in our God, yet we do place our trust in that One and True God—
and pray that as we struggle to accept what our faith tells us, that we may each of
us grow in the knowledge and faith of our Eternal and Ever-loving Lord and King. Amen.

A Personal Meditation
Ascension Day Year C 2016
Psalms 47 and 93

Psalm 47 (Vs 6) encourages us to “...Sing praises to God, sing praises; sing praises
to our King, sing praises!. For God is the King over all the earth...”
Four times, the
call was for people to sing, sing, sing, and sing praises to God their King. St Augustine,
the Bishop of Hippo from 354-430 AD was a long-ago prophet, philosopher and theologian
whose reflections and meditations greatly influenced the development and spirituality
of the church in western Europe. In addition, many people consider him to be one of
the theological fathers of the Reformation. St Augustine is also credited with the saying:
“He who sings, prays twice.” Singing is an act that involves much more of our bodies
than does talking! Our breathing is different when we sing; often the way we sit or stand
is also affected - and some people literally sing with their whole body; so the psalmist
was calling for our whole-of-body involvement in singing our praises to God the King.

Creative pause: “...Praise the Lord with your singing, sing God psalms forever…”1

Members of royalty and their representatives are shown respect and honour by the way
their subjects or visitors greet them. In some nations, it is still required that their citizens
crawl or prostrate themselves before their king or his representative, but currently the
correct way for citizens, guests or visitors to come before most royalty is with a shallow bow,
a partial curtsy or by inclining the head from the neck only. Of course in earlier times, there
normally was a more exaggerated form of showing respect and honour to one’s monarch.
These days, how do we show honour and reverence to the King of kings – God’s-Own-Self?
Psalm 97 gives us a clue! “...Your throne, O Lord, has stood from time immemorial. You
yourself are from the everlasting past… Your reign, O Lord, is holy forever and ever.”
has not been a time when God’s holiness was not present – how can we not worship God!

Creative pause: “...Your throne, O Lord, has stood from time immemorial...”

Early in the 1950’s the interior of our church was remodelled and refurbished, and in my
opinion, some of the loveliest pieces of furniture were the Prayer Desks in the sanctuary,
where our minister knelt to pray; and from there the congregation was lifted before God’s
throne of grace through his extemporary prayers. It’s amazing to me how the memories of
those weekly prayer offerings linger in my mind as a example of how to really pray to God!
Was it the words? Was it the tone of voice? Was it his attitude and the glow on his face as
he prayed? Or was it a combination of all three? That minister certainly sang with gusto in
his Yorkshire accent, so if we follow Augustine’s premise, he prayed many times as he led
us in our worship of God. Is that now considered to be an old fashioned style of worshipping
God? How do you physically say your prayers to God? How does your current worship leader
come to God in prayer? Are you inspired to prayer through the example of worship leaders?

Creative pause: “…as you have given a place for prayer, so give us hearts to pray…”2

1 From “Together in Song” #29
“Clap your hands all you nations”
Words by John L Bell
© Used with Permission,
LicenSing License No. 604543

2 From “Together in Song” #444
“Dear Shepherd of your people hear”
Words by John Newton
Words are in the public domain

Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation,
copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007, 2013 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

*Revised Indexing Scheme from 'Consultation on Church Union' (COCU).

I acknowledge and give heartfelt thanks for the theological inspiration available from the scholarship and writings of
Professor Walter Brueggemann; and through the resources from the internet and “The Text this Week” (Textweek).

If the Prayers and/or Meditations are used in shared worship, please provide this acknowledgement:
© 2016 Joan Stott – ‘The Timeless Psalms’ RCL Psalms Year C. Used with permission.


Download/view a pdf file of this document here: ascensiondayc_2016.pdf