Notes of Meeting Sunday 30th October 2022

Worship led by Sue Clarke

We are here this morning to praise our God and to bless His holy name. What does it mean to bless?

The word "bless" is also used to translate the Hebrew word barak, which means "to praise, congratulate or salute."

We have so many reasons to bless the Lord. We should be so thankful and full of praise as we come into God’s presence.

Ephesians 1 v3-10 “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. For He chose us in Him, before the creation of the world, to be holy and blameless in His sight.  In love, He predestined us to be adopted as His sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with His pleasure and will, to the praise of His glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. In Him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace, that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding. And he made known to us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, to be put into effect when the times will have reached their fulfilment- to bring all things in heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ.”

SONG: Exalt the Lord our God  87

Pslam 100 v4  Enter his gates with thanksgiving,  and his courts with praise! Give thanks to him; bless his name! “


SONG: Father in heaven  96

We are familiar with God’s blessings upon us, but what does it mean for us to bless the Lord? To bless the Lord means to praise Him, exalt Him, and worship Him. We offer Him our praise and blessings because He deserves them. Unlike God’s blessings upon us, which are wholly undeserved and given through His mercy and grace, our blessing God is done out of an understanding that He is the true praiseworthy Creator and our heavenly Father.

God is glorified when we bless and praise and acknowledge Him. That acknowledgement comes in the form of praise, adoration, thanksgiving and love. That is what we were originally created for. 

Isaiah 25 v1 O Lord, You are my God; I will exalt You and praise Your name, for in perfect faithfulness you have done marvellous things.”

Later on in same chapter:

“Surely this is our God , we trusted in him and he saved us. This is the Lord, we trusted in him, let us rejoice and be glad in his salvation.”

SONG: I worship You Almighty God  282

In scripture, when God “blesses” men they are helped and strengthened and made better off than they were before. When the Old Testament speaks of blessing God, it is not giving a process that aims at the increase of God’s strength, It is an exclamation of gratitude and admiration.

Blessing God provides a window to worship.

We can bless God by using expressions such as: “I magnify the Lord” or “Let us exalt his name.” Both of these expressions properly recognise and give joyful expression to God’s magnificence and his exalted status. To bless God means to recognize his great richness, strength, and gracious bounty, and to express our gratitude and delight in seeing and experiencing it.

Hebrews 13 v15 “Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise- the fruit of lips that confess His name.”  (Another version finishes with: ”the fruit of lips that thankfully acknowledge and confess and glorify His name.”)

Psalm 29 v1-2 “Ascribe to the Lord, glory and strength. Ascribe to the Lord the glory due His name. Worship the Lord in the splendour of His holiness.”

SONG: Blessing and Honour  675

I’ve taken these words from another songs of fellowship song:

Sing to the Lord, be joyful in praise, exalt His magnificent ways. Sing to the Lord, again and again, forever His glory proclaim. Let anthems of worship ascend to the King, giving all honour to Him. Great is His name throughout the earth, with all our strength let us sing: Glory to the Lord. (I love that phrase- with all of our strength!)

Psalm 96 v2-3 Sing to the Lord, bless his name; tell of his salvation from day to day. Declare his glory among the nations, his marvellous works among all the peoples!”


1 Peter 1 v3 “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.


SONG: Wonderful so wonderful  1632


Psalm 145 v1-2 “I will extol you, my God and King, and bless your name forever and ever. Every day I will bless you and praise your name forever and ever. Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise.”


SONG: Bless the Lord O my soul -10000 reasons 2231


1 Chronicles 29 v10-11 Blessed are you, O Lord, the God of Israel our father, forever and ever. Yours is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendour, for everything in heaven and earth is yours. Yours, O Lord, is the kingdom; you are exalted as head over all.


Psalm 113 v2 Blessed be the name of the Lord from this time forth and forevermore!


SONG: Blessed be Your Name 


A summary of Paul Carter’s Message

(Please look up the bible passages for yourselves!)

Firstly, Paul read from Luke’s gospel the account of Jesus eating at the home of a Pharisee named Simon (Luke 7: 36 – 50).

Note that Jesus elsewhere calls himself the “friend of tax collectors and sinners”. See also the accounts in Matthew 9:10 and 11:19 where Jesus was only too pleased to be seen with tax collectors.

They were of course much hated enemies of the people, seen as in league with their Roman oppressors, and were banned from worshipping in the synagogue. They were seen as “sinners”, people who didn’t conform to the leaders’view of the law.

In ? 17 – 20, at the house of Zacchaeus,  Jesus says  that he came “to save the lost”.

At the house of Simon the Pharisee, we find that Simon genuinely wanted to find out more about Jesus, but he failed to welcome him properly to his home, or to show any respect. But the woman, who it seems knew Jesus from past meetings, was truly grateful for Jesus’ kindness to her, and she expressed her sorrow, love, and gratitude to Jesus by pouring the expensive oil over Jesus’ feet, and wiping him with her hair.

The Pharisees were quick to judge -  Jesus as “this man”, and the woman “she is a sinner”.

Paul also reminded us of the parable in Luke 18: 9 – 14, where again the Pharisee is judgemental towards the tax collector. They both got what they asked for – the Pharisee got nothing, but the tax collector got God’s forgiveness.

Jesus tells us (in John 3: 17) that he didn’t “come into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world”. All sinners need His mercy, as “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3: 23). Even the apostle John includes himself as a sinner, needing the mercy of God (see 1John 1: 8 – 10).

After the establishment of a lifeboat station at Selsey in 1861, the first Lifeboat was named ”The Friend” – how we all need a friend. Jesus was and still is the sinner’s friend. In john 15: 13, Jesus says “Greater love has no-one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”

Paul referred to a very old hymn – Jesus , the sinners’ friend.


Jesus, the sinners’ Friend!

We hide ourselves in Thee:

God looks upon Thy sprinkled blood,-

It is our only plea.


He hears Thy precious Name,

We claim it as our own;

The Father must accept and bless

His well-beloved Son.

He sees Thy spotless robe,

It covers all our sin;

The golden gates have welcomed Thee,

And we may enter in.


Thou hast fulfilled the law,

And we are justified;

Ours is the blessing, Thine the curse;

We live, for Thou hast died.


Jesus, the sinners’ Friend!

We cannot speak Thy praise!

No mortal voice can sing the song

That ransomed hearts would raise.


But when before the throne,

Upon the glassy sea,

Clothed in our blood-bought robes of white,

We stand complete in Thee:


Jesus, we’ll give thee then

Such praises as are meet,

And cast ten thousand golden crowns,

Adoring at Thy feet



Remember those that Jesus spoke with – none were too low for him to reach out to. He’s the same today – by His grace reaching out to sinners needing a Saviour.

Closing hymn: What a friend we have in Jesus