christmas eve
candle light

OPENING PRAYER:


MARY’S SONG [Luke 1]

And Mary declared:

“My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has been mindful of the humble state of his servant.
From now on all generations will call me blessed,

for the Mighty One has done great things for me—holy is his name.

His mercy extends to those who fear him, from generation to generation. He has performed mighty deeds with his arm; he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts. He has brought down rulers from their thrones but has lifted up the humble. He has filled the hungry with good things but has sent the rich away empty.

He has helped his servant Israel, remembering to be merciful to Abraham and his descendants forever, just as he promised our ancestors.”


Zechariah’s Song [Luke 1]

Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied:

“Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel, because he has come to his people and redeemed them. 

He has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David (as he said through his holy prophets of long ago), salvation from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us— to show mercy to our ancestors and to remember his holy covenant, the oath he swore to our father Abraham: to rescue us from the hand of our enemies, and to enable us to serve him without fear

in holiness and righteousness before him all our days.”


And about his son, Zechariah prophesied: 

“You, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High;
for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him, to give his people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins, because of the tender mercy of our God, by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace.”



CHRISTMAS HYMNS:

 

JOY TO THE WORLD

 

1 Joy to the world, the Lord is come!

Let earth receive its king;

let ev’ry heart prepare him room,

and heav’n and nature sing,

and heav’n and nature sing,

and heav’n, and heav’n and nature sing.

 

2 Joy to the earth, the Savior reigns!

Let all their songs employ

while fields and floods, rocks, hills, and plains,

repeat the sounding joy,

repeat the sounding joy,

repeat, repeat the sounding joy.

 

3 He rules the world with truth and grace,

and makes the nations prove

the glories of his righteousness,

and wonders of his love,

and wonders of his love,

and wonders, wonders of his love.

 

 

 

O COME, ALL YE FAITHFUL

 

1 O come, all ye faithful,

joyful and triumphant,

O come ye, O come ye to Bethlehem.

Come and behold him,

born the king of angels.

 

[REFRAIN]:

O come let us adore him,

O come let us adore him,

O come let us adore him,

Christ the Lord.

 

2 Sing, choirs of angels,

sing in exultation,

sing, all ye citizens of heav’n above:

“Glory to God,

glory in the highest!” [Refrain]

 

3 Yea, Lord, we greet thee,

born this happy morning,

Jesus, to thee be all glory giv’n;

Word of the Father,

now in flesh appearing [Refrain]

 

 

 

SCRIPTURE READINGS:

 

1. THE PLACE OF CHRIST’S BIRTH:

[Micah 5:2] “But you, Bethlehem (also called Ephrathah), though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times.”

 

2. THE SIGN OF CHRIST’S BIRTH:

[Isaiah 7:14] The Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.

 

3. THE LIGHT OF CHRIST’S BIRTH:

[Isaiah 9:2-7] The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of deep darkness a light has dawned. 

For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, 

and the government will be on his shoulders. 

And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Of the greatness of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. 

 

4. THE INCARNATION OF CHRIST’S BIRTH:

[John 1:1-5, 9-14] In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God. 

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

 

5. THE STORY OF CHRIST’S BIRTH:

[Luke 2:1-16] In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. And everyone went to their own town to register. 

So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them. 

 

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

“Glory to God in the highest heaven,
    and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

 

When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.” So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 

 

 

 

CANDLE LIGHTING:

This light represents Jesus Christ. His light is love that passes from one to another. We spread the light of Christ until all have received and Christ’s light shines brightest!

 

LIGHT OF THE WORLD:

Light of the world, You stepped down into darkness

Opened my eyes, let me see

 

Beauty that made this heart adore You

Hope of a life spent with You

 

Here I am to worship

Here I am to bow down

Here I am to say that You’re my God

You’re altogether lovely

Altogether worthy

Altogether wonderful to me

 

King of all days, Oh, so highly exalted

Glorious in heaven above

Humbly You came, To the earth You created

All for love’s sake became poor

 

Here I am to worship

Here I am to bow down

Here I am to say that You’re my God

You’re altogether lovely

Altogether worthy

Altogether wonderful to me

 

 

 

SILENT NIGHT:

 

1 Silent night, holy night

All is calm, all is bright

‘Round yon virgin Mother and Child

Holy infant so tender and mild

Sleep in heavenly peace

Sleep in heavenly peace

 

2 Silent night, holy night!

Shepherds quake at the sight!

Glories stream from heaven afar;

Heavenly hosts sing Al-le-lu-ia!

Christ the Savior is born!

Christ the Savior is born!

 

3 Silent night, holy night

Son of God, love’s pure light

Radiant beams from Thy holy face

With the dawn of redeeming grace

Jesus, Lord at Thy birth

Jesus, Lord at Thy birth

 

 

 

CLOSING PRAYER:

 

You, Christ, are the King of Glory, the eternal Son of the Father.

When you became man to set us free you did not shun the Virgin’s womb.

You overcame the sting of death and opened the womb of resurrection life.

Through you, oh great light of the world, the doors to your Heavenly Kingdom are open wide to all who by your grace are saved through faith in you.

You are seated at God’s right hand in glory.

We believe that you will come again and be our judge.

Help your people now, Holy Spirit, to love you with all our heart, soul and strength,

to love our neighbor as ourself, to love one another as you have first loved us.

You have redeemed us with the price of your own blood.

We await you now, Lord Jesus. 

Come again to bring us, with all your saints, in to your everlasting glory, as you have promised.

Come, Lord Jesus. 

You are the one we are waiting for.

 

SING:

 

OH, COME LET US ADORE HIM

OH, COME LET US ADORE HIM

OH, COME LET US ADORE HIM

CHRIST THE LORD

 

 

 

May God’s new life be born in you and your home, 

this night and forever more.

Amen. 

 

Merry Christmas!

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