Holy Week At Harbins 2018

holy_weekTwo years ago, due to an increasing burden the HCBC pastors had over the lack of attention and focus on the Easter season (especially compared to Christmas) we launched a new tradition.   To help enhance your Easter worship, we deemed it right and good to formally observe Holy Week and encourage all of our members to do the same.

As significant as Christmas is, it is not an end unto itself.  The reason Jesus was born in Bethlehem was to bleed on Golgotha.  He was laid in a manger for the purpose of having His body laid in a tomb.  He descended to earth as a lowly Man so that He could later rise triumphantly from the grave.  The whole purpose of Christmas is Easter.

For this reason, Pastor Jeff and I are eager to continue our Holy Week tradition by providing additional opportunities for corporate worship, as well as encouraging HCBC families to have times of personal and/or family worship in their homes which revolves specifically around the events we remember during Holy Week.

Holy week is March 25th-April 1st.  Below is the HCBC Holy Week schedule, followed by some resources you can use personally or with your family during Holy Week.  (Please note that due to the additional worship services we are adding during Holy Week, we will not be having our regular community groups during that time.)

blue grapes cornerSunday Morning, March 25th, – Palm Sunday.  Sunday School at 9:30.  Corporate Worship at 10:45.  We all want to have a fruitful life, and the reason Jesus rode into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday was to die on Good Friday so that He might bear much fruit through you! On Palm Sunday we’ll continue our sermon series, “Seeing and Savoring Jesus Christ” by considering Jesus’ metaphor of the Vine and the Branches in John 15.  Following the service stick around for our fellowship meal and games!

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Thursday night, March 29th – Maundy Thursday Service  w/Communion, 7pm-8pm.

The word “Maundy” comes from the Latin word where we get our English word “command” or “mandate” from.  Jesus gave a special mandate the evening before He was crucified, that we would love one another as Jesus loves us. (John 13:33-34).  In addition to a time of worship through singing, Pastor  Demer will deliver a brief sermon followed by the Lord’s Supper.

imagesFriday night, March 30th – Good Friday Service, 7pm-8pm. 

John 3:16 is perhaps the most popular verse in the Bible.  Certainly it captures the essence of what Good Friday is all about.  In addition to a time of worship through song, Pastor Demer will share a gospel-centered message anchored in this beloved verse.

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Resurrection Sunday, April 1st – Easter Service, Sunday School at 9:30am, Corporate Worship at 10:45am- Join us as we celebrate Jesus Christ’s triumph over the grave and the powers of darkness!  Following the service come out to Harbins Park for a picnic.  Bring lunch for your family and meet us at the pavilion closest to the playground (just up the little hill).  This is located at the 2nd entrance to Harbins Park and it’s the same place that we met last year.

And finally, here are some great Holy Week resources for you and your family from Desiring God Ministries.

Love to the Uttermost, Devotional Readings for Holy Week by John PiperThis free devotional begins on Palm Sunday, ends on Easter Sunday, and aims to focus our attention on Jesus as he displays his love to the uttermost (John 13:1). These meditations on the self-giving love of Christ are all excerpted from the preaching and writing ministry of John Piper.

Five Helps for Your Holy Week- This link features five of Desiring God’s best articles related to the Easter season.  Topics include a “Theology of Resurrection”, “Was Jesus Really Crucified?”, and 8 reasons why the Resurrection of Jesus is an historically reliable fact.

Your Sorrow Will Turn To Joy, Morning and Evening Meditations for Holy Week– For this free devotional, Desiring God has assembled a team of eleven pastors and scholars to walk us through Holy Week as we walk together with our Lord. This collection of short meditations includes readings for each morning and evening from Palm Sunday to the triumph of Easter.

A Theater Called Holy Week – Tony Reinke prepares us for Holy Week in his brief article highlighting John 12:27-33

Make Holy Week Holy to the Lord – The week between Palm Sunday and Easter is not intrinsically holy, except that all time is holy, since it belongs to God. But we can make it holy by setting it apart for sacred focus.  This link gives you the Scriptures from the 4 gospels that record Jesus’ final hours.  Consider using these Scriptures to supplement your daily time in the Scriptures this week.

It is my prayer that HCBC’s Holy Week focus will be a blessing as it helps you and your family turn your eyes all the more to the sufferings and triumph of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ!

Grace and Peace,

Pastor Demer

A New Tradition At Harbins

Over the years at Harbins we have developed several traditions that have become dear to our hearts. Whether its our annual observance of the ancient tradition of Advent at the Christmas season or the unique way we observe the Lord’s supper, Harbins has a unique and special culture that we thank God for.

holyweekThis Easter season we hope to add a new tradition at our church. For years I’ve desired for our church to put more emphasis on the week traditionally known as “Holy Week,” and so this year we plan to do so by offering two new midweek services: a Maundy Thursday service on the March 24th and a Good Friday service on the 25th.

If you are not familiar with Maundy Thursday the name comes from the Latin word “Mandatum” which means command or mandate. Its named this because on the night before his death, just after He had taken on the posture of a slave by washing His disciples feet,  Jesus said this: “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another” (John 13:34). This was a new commandment because the deep love that Jesus’ disciples were called to emulate was something greater than had ever been seen before, and it would reach it climax the next day on an old rugged cross. This was a radically new level of love, love that would bring reconciliation between God and man.

Many of you are probably a lot more familiar with Good Friday.  At this service we will remember the suffering and death of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is “good” not because the death of Christ was not terrible and sad, but because of what the death secured for all those who believe in Him, and of course death had no claim over Him so the profound sadness of Good Friday must give way to overwhelming joy of Resurrection Sunday.

So here’s our Holy Week calendar at Harbins for this year’s Easter Season:

•March 20th- Palm Sunday Service

•March 24th- Maundy Thursday Service, 7:00pm

•March 25th- Good Friday Service, 7:00pm

•March 27th- Resurrection Sunday Service (Easter) followed by a Fellowship Meal

My hope and sincere desire is that God will bless our church deeply as we observe these specific focuses all in preparation for the glorious truth of Resurrection Sunday.  Demer and I also plan to make available some devotional ideas and resources that you family can use to make Holy Week even more meaningful for your home.

One last note: due to the extra services of Holy Week we will be taking a break from our regular Community Groups gatherings of that week. I look forward to observing Holy Week and establishing this new tradition at Harbins.

Yours In Christ,

Pastor Steve