On Christmas Day at Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Charleston, SC, our senior pastor finished our Advent sermon series in Matthew’s Gospel. While Luke gives the nativity scene, the shepherds, and the innkeeper, we see that Matthew’s account gives no sentimentality–just the sovereignty of God. Listen to the whole sermon here.
At Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Charleston, SC, for our fourth Sunday in Advent on Sunday, December 18, our senior pastor continued in Matthew’s Gospel. We examined how God interrupted Joseph’s narrative of his life: God gave him a vision and told him that his betrothed wife would conceive of the Holy Spirit and give birth to a son. God enlarged Joseph’s narrative, and he and Mary participated with God to change the world. Listen to the whole sermon here.
The middle school and high school classes at Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Charleston, SC, will take a break from their weekly study in John to use all of Scripture to prepare their hearts during Advent beginning this Sunday, November 27. As they read their assigned Scripture passages, they’ll ask important questions to ponder this Christmas season: Who is Jesus? Why did He come? What do I learn about God? What do I learn about me?
Advent begins this Sunday, November 27 at Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Charleston, SC. During the Christian-education hour at 9:15 am, our Redeemer Kids will be practicing their songs, verses, and stories for their Christmas Celebration on December 11.
Here’s the plan for the four weeks of Advent:
- November 27: The kids will review the story of Jesus’ birth from Luke 2, and they’ll be practicing their special Christmas songs. For Scripture memory they’ll review John 3:16.
- December 4: To practice for the Christmas Celebration, the kids will meet in the sanctuary.
- December 11: To practice for the Christmas Celebration, the kids will meet in the sanctuary.
- December 18: The kids will enjoy a birthday party for Jesus in the Fellowship Hall. They’ll enjoy music, games, and cupcakes to celebrate Jesus’ birth! For Scripture memory they’ll review John 3:16.
Then we’ll take a break from Christian-education classes for Christmas Day and New Year’s Day and resume our series Tell Me the Stories of Jesus on January 8.
COMMUNITY THANKSGIVING SERVICE: Redeemer’s choir is participating again this year at the Community Thanksgiving Service hosted at Second Presbyterian Church (342 Meeting St., 29403) on Tuesday, November 22 at 7 pm. Churches of many denominations and backgrounds come together each year in this blended service focused on thanksgiving and community.
THANKSGIVING: Do you have an extra spot at your Thanksgiving dinner table? Do you need a place to go for Thanksgiving dinner? Contact Gray Morgan to be matched up.
ADVENT: Our adult classes will continue with their studies of the Gospel of John during the Advent season. The Youth classes (both middle and high school) will have a special Advent focus for the next four weeks. Our Redeemer Kids will be rehearsing their songs and such during the Christian-education hour at 9:15 am on Sundays during Advent for their Christmas Celebration. Please make every effort to have your preschool and elementary children present for these rehearsals. They are very excited to share the birth of Jesus with the Redeemer family at their Christmas Celebration on Sunday evening, December 11.
PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT: Need to do a little shopping without the kids? Check out details for our Parents’ Night Out event at the church on Saturday, December 3 from 5-8:30 pm.
REDEEMER KIDS CHRISTMAS CELEBRATION: Redeemer Kids will tell the story of Jesus’ birth through Scripture, songs, and sets on Sunday, December 11 at 5:30 pm.
CHRISTMAS PARTY AND TALENT SHOW: We’re movin’ on up to the East Side! Since our congregation has grown so much in the past two years and we don’t all fit in our Fellowship Hall, we’re having our annual Christmas party and talent show in The Cedar Room at The Cigar Factory (701 East Bay St., 29403) on Sunday, December 18 at 6 pm. With an abundance of space, we’re planning a special kids’ section with special tables, decor, and activities for them. Of course we’ll have the talent show: Both kids and adults are encouraged to perform! We’ll have a piano on site, and Fred is happy to accompany any singers if needed (email Fred Hudson to arrange his help). And be sure to email Craig to be added to the program for the evening if you’re interested in sharing your talents! New this year, we’re encouraging each community group to perform–serious or funny, skits or songs, whatever your group would like to perform! For dinner we’ll do finger foods, and we’ll need plenty of them! Bring multiple dishes to share, and get some ideas from this potluck signup sheet or add your own. We’re excited to celebrate with our growing church family!
SPECIAL SERVICES: We’ll have a Christmas Eve service on Saturday, December 24 at 6 pm. We’ll have a morning worship service on Sunday, December 25 and on Sunday, January 1 at a special time of 11 am but no Christian-education classes and no Children’s Worship during the sermon. While our nurseries will be open and available for parents to use, we will not have anyone slated to serve in the nurseries for both the Christmas Eve and Christmas morning services. All children are welcome in these worship services! Our usual nurseries will resume for Sunday, January 1.
Our senior pastor at Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Charleston, SC, wrapped up his Advent sermon series preaching through John 1:19-28 this past Sunday, January 3. He began by talking about the “spotlight effect”–our naturally being conscious of ourselves, what we are thinking, how we look, and what we are doing–as described in this December 2015 article in The Atlantic.
While being self-conscious generally afflicts our culture, John the Baptist in our passage answers questions to let us know he clearly knew who he was not and who he was. John was a celebrity, yet he was determined not to steal the glory or the spotlight that did not belong to him. John was “the voice in the desert” preparing the way for Jesus and pointing the people to Christ; then people followed Jesus through John’s words and actions!
As we think through questions like: Who are you? What do you say about yourself?, we need to go to Scripture for our identity, and we must always point people to Christ. We’ll never go wrong when we let the Word of God give us our identity; these verses are a great starting point:
I Corinthians 6:9-11 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified,you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
Romans 8:30 And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.
Ephesians 1:5 …he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will,…
I John 3:1 See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him.
In his sermon this week, Pastor Craig explains the reality behind the small phrase, “Joseph considered these things,” which are words that we often take for granted during the Christmas season. In Matthew’s account of the birth of Christ, the angel who visits Joseph tells him not to be afraid—but what was he afraid of? Craig postulates that, because Joseph was deemed to be a righteous man in God’s eyes, he was afraid of sinning against God by taking Mary as his wife. Just one of the many beautiful aspects of this story that we sometimes overlook is how God met Joseph in his fear, just as he does for each and every one of us. Listen to the whole sermon here.
Join us this Thursday at Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Charleston, SC, for our Christmas Eve service at 6 pm. Our special candlelight service held in our sanctuary (43 Wentworth St., 29401) is open to the public. We’ll celebrate in this worship service the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. We hope you are filled with awe, adoration, gratitude, hope, and joy as we reflect on the marvelous gift that God has given unto us. Here’s the worship bulletin for our special service with candlelight, carols, and Scripture. Your children of all ages are welcome to participate in this service; there will be no childcare for any ages offered.
Our special Advent class for the whole church family continued this past Sunday, December 13 at Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Charleston, SC. The children got to play with their food by making nativity scenes!
After quickly assembling edible nativity scenes, Tony led us in other frantic Christmastime activities: writing cards, wrapping gifts, setting up Christmas trees, and stringing lights. Participants had only a few minutes to complete their hurried tasks!
As we hurried from one task to another, we all felt the “Christmas-rush” that so often fills our holiday season. Our Bible story slowed us down and focused us on the original Christmas story from Luke 2, as we talked about “making room in our hearts for Jesus.” Check out pictures from Week 1 and Week 2.