Welcome to Safe Harbor Presbyterian Church
Where the love of Christ builds a harbor of acceptance, inspiration,
Fellowship, service and joy.
You enrich our worship with your presence.
"When we say welcome we mean it!"
Safe Harbor Live Home Church on Zoom Time: Dec 27, 2020 02:00 PM Pacific Time
From Computer, Tablet or Smart Phone Click on this link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89802271612
Meeting ID: 898 0227 1612
For Phone Login 1-669-900-9128, #, 888 9802 271612#
If you need assistance, Call Monty Rice at 805-927-2215
It is not possible to pass the collection plate at our live home church.
Safe Harbor Presbyterian Church
c/o Monty Rice
1298 Warren Rd.
Cambria, CA 93428
If this is your first time here, WELCOME.
Safe Harbor Presbyterian Church-PCUSA
2700 Eton Rd. • Cambria, CA 93428
Call or text 805.395.1521
Prelude Deborah Farrand
At the tolling of the bell, please quietly prepare your heart for worship.
Meditation Music Deborah Farrand
Welcome and Announcements
† Call to Worship
Leader: We come to worship and adore.
All: All creation joins in praising.
Leader: We welcome Immanuel.
All: Sages leave their contemplations, brighter visions beam afar.
Leader: We come to worship and adore.
All: Righteousness and praise sprang up, salvation like a blazing torch.
Leader: Christ came, an infant, the Prince of Peace.
All: We come to worship Father, Son and Holy spirit, the eternal three in One.
Psalm Prayer 148 (In unison)
Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord from the Heavens; praise him from the heights above. Praise him, All his angels; Praise him all his heavenly hosts. Praise him sun and moon; praise him all you shining stars. Praise him, you highest heavens and you waters above the skies. Let them praise the name of the Lord for at his command they were created, and he established them for ever and ever-he issued a decree that will never pass away. We praise the Lord. Amen.
†Hymn of Praise # 143 Angels from the Realms of Glory
Confession of Sin (In unison)
The newborn king brings the loving way, the light for the world. Even when we love him, we do not follow as we should. We take our eyes from him. We clutter our minds with worry. Our hearts bear anger, and pain and crowd the very Christ
who brings us peace. Please hear our silent prayers of confession...
(In unison) Lord help us to give the Christ child the room in our hearts so he may grow and guide our lives. Let us live to share his light and love. Amen
Assurance of Pardon New Creations in Christ
†The Sharing of the Peace
Hymn of Preparation #452 Open the Eyes of My Heart
Leader: Listen for the Word of God.
People: Our ears are open and our hearts are ready to receive.
Scripture: Luke 2:22-38
Leader: The Word of the Lord.
People: Thanks be to God.
Meditation: Eyes to See Rev. Eugenia Gamble
Hymn of Response #148 Mary and Joseph Came to the Temple
Call to Prayer: Hymn #469 Lord, Listen to Your Children Praying
Prayers of the People and The Litany for Christmas
Response to Prayer Hymn # 710 We Are An Offering
Prayer of Dedication
† Hymn of Parting #147 The First Nowell
† Charge and Benediction
After the service, we hope you will join us for Virtual Fellowship Time.
†=If able, please stand
CURRENT PRAYER LIST
Members of our community that are lonely, hungry and sick.
If you would like to support the work of Safe Harbor Church financially:
Tax deductible checks may be made to Safe Harbor Presbyterian Church.
During our period of isolation, please mail checks to:
Monty Rice 1298 Warren Road Cambria CA 93428
WHEN WE SAY “ WELCOME! ”, WE MEAN IT!
The Rev. Eugenia A. Gamble
Tom and Lana Cochrun
Monty and Julia Rice
The Presentation of Jesus in the Temple…Luke 2:22-40….12.27.20
Luke 2:22) When the time came for their purification according to the law of Moses, they brought him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord 23) (as it is written in the law of the Lord, “Every firstborn male shall be designated as holy to the Lord”), 24) and they offered a sacrifice according to what is stated in the law of the Lord, “a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons.” 25) Now there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon; this man was righteous and devout, looking forward to the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit rested on him. 26) It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. 27) Guided by the Spirit, Simeon came into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him what was customary under the law. 28) Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying, 29) “Master, now you are dismissing your servant in peace, according to your word; 30) for my eyes have seen your salvation, 31) which you have prepared in the presence of all peoples, 32) a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel.” 33) And the child’s father and mother were amazed at what was being said about him. 34) Then Simeon blessed them and said to his mother Mary, “This child is destined for the falling and the rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be opposed 35) so that the inner thoughts of many will be revealed—and a sword will pierce your own soul too.” 36) There was also a prophet, Anna the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was of a great age, having lived with her husband seven years after her marriage, 37) then as a widow to the age of eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped there with fasting and prayer night and day. 38) At that moment she came, and began to praise God and to speak about the child to all who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem. 39) When they had finished everything required by the law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee, to their own town of Nazareth. 40) The child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom; and the favor of God was upon him.
Background: How quickly the angel choruses disappear! How quickly the shepherds go back to their flocks! How quickly the pageantry of the miraculous birth gives way to the affairs of ordinary life. Mary and Joseph have a son to rear and we who gathered dewy eyed at the manger know where that life is going. Today’s story emphasizes a theme that Luke repeats often; Jesus’ commitment to the law, even from the cradle. This story concludes Luke’s birth narratives.
What was going on here? Two rituals required by the law are referred to here. One was the ritual cleansing of the mother. Since there was blood involved in childbirth, a woman was considered unclean for a period of time following giving birth. The length of time depended on whether the child was a boy or a girl. After the birth of a male child a mother was unclean for 7 days and underwent purification for 33 days. It was twice as long for the birth of a girl. During this time she was not allowed in the temple or to touch any holy thing. At the end of the proscribed time, the mother was required to sacrifice a lamb plus a turtledove or pigeon. If the family was too poor to afford this sacrifice, the law provided that two doves or pigeons could be substituted. Mary’s sacrifice tells us not only that she was a woman of faith, but that Jesus was born into poverty. The second
ritual was a dedication ritual in which a first-born son was returned to God as a thanksgiving for the gift of fertility. For five shekels the baby could be redeemed and raised at home.
Who was Simeon? Simeon, whose name means “God hears”, was an ordinary man of faith. He was not an ordained religious leader, nor did he have any special religious credentials. He simply walked with God. What we do know about him was that he lived a life of prayer that was marked by patient waiting for God’s promises to be fulfilled.
Who was Anna? Anna was a prophet known for her spiritual wisdom. Anna spent her time in the temple serving God through fasting and prayer. She probably married young and was widowed after seven years. The Greek is difficult to understand, but she was either 84 years old at the time of Jesus’ presentation or else she had lived as a widow for 84 years.
Vs. 25 – looking forward to – literally, to be glued to
The consolation of Israel – a phrase referring to the comfort that will come with Messiah’s reign. It refers specifically to the time of restoration for Israel’s national life.
Vs. 26-27 – note that Simeon’s life is marked by close attention to and reliance upon the Holy Spirit.
Vs. 28 – took into his arms – literally, received into the bend of his arm, cradled.
Praised – blessed, spoke well of
Vs. 29 – master – Greek –dispotes. Literally, absolute ruler
Dismissing – free fully, relieve, release, let die, pardon, forgive, loose, set at liberty
Peace – used 14 times in Luke. It is both the goal and result of God’s redemptive work. Peace is deep, rich, harmonious, oneness, wholeness, quietness, rest. This word is sometimes translated, put back together again.
Your salvation – this refers to the one who brings salvation. It could be translated as ‘your defender’.
Vs. 31 – prepared – provided, made ready
All people – God’s salvation and defense are not just for Israel, but also for all
Vs. 34 – Simeon’s blessing is full of revelation. Just as turning on a light brings the possibility of shadow, Jesus’ birth comes with the reality of the suffering and sacrifice that will come to him and the pain his death will bring to his mother.
Falling and rising – this refers to two different groups of people, those found righteous at judgment and those who fall to judgment.
Vs. 36 – prophet – one who gives voice to God’s truth
Vs. 37 – worship, fasting, and prayer – a life totally dedicated to disciplined faith
Vs. 38 – Anna, too, immediately recognizes Jesus as Messiah and the truth poured from her to all that would listen.
Vs. 40 – wisdom – Greek – Sophia – refers to the wisdom of God, especially as it relates to learning from experience
Favor – Greek – charis – sometimes translated as grace or gift
Questions for Personal Reflection
1. What are the activities or priorities in your life that open you up to noticing spiritual realities in everyday events?
2. Anna and Simeon found their grounding and identity in worship in the community of faith. How does worship with others sustain and deepen your faith experience?
3. Anna and Simeon had been waiting all their lives for God to move in a powerful way for their people. What do you long for most for God to do in these days?
4. Can you imagine how Joseph and Mary must have felt when greeted in this way by these two holy people? What hopes and fears might this encounter have awakened?