Here’s a three-voice reading on the Lordship of Christ I put together for a service a few weeks ago. It draws from the following scripture texts: 1 Corinthians 1:2-3, Colossians 1:15-17, 19-20; Philippians 2:6-11; 1 Corinthians 8:5-7; Romans 10:9-10; Matthew 7:21; Ephesians 4:1; Romans 14:7-9; 1 Corinthians 15:57; 1 Thessalonians 5:22-24.
The Lordship of Christ
1: To the church of God,
to all those whom Christ Jesus has made holy,
who are called to be God’s men and women,
to all true believers in Jesus Christ—their Lord and our Lord—
grace and peace to you
from God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ!
2: Christ is the visible image of the invisible God.
He existed before anything was created
and is supreme over all creation,
for through him God created everything in heaven and on earth.
3: He existed before anything else,
and he holds all creation together.
1: God in all his fullness
was pleased to live in Christ,
and through him, God reconciled everything to himself,
making peace…by means of his blood on the cross.
3: Though he was God,
he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to.
Instead, he gave up his divine privileges;
he took the humble position of a slave
and was born as a human being.
2: When he appeared in human form,
he humbled himself in obedience to God
and died a criminal’s death on a cross.
1: Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honor
and gave him the name above all other names,
that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.
2: We know that there is only one God, the Father,
who created everything,
and we live for him.
3: And there is only one Lord, Jesus Christ,
through whom God made everything
and through whom we have been given life.
1: This is the message we preach:
If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord
and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead,
you will be saved.
3: For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God,
2: and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved.
1: Not everyone who calls out to me, ‘Lord! Lord!’
will enter the Kingdom of Heaven.
Only those who actually do the will of my Father in heaven will enter.
2: I beg you,
lead a life worthy of your calling,
for you have been called by God.
3: We don’t live for ourselves or die for ourselves.
If we live, it is to honor the Lord.
And if we die, it is to honor the Lord.
1: So whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.
Christ died and rose again for this very purpose—
to be Lord both of the living and of the dead.
2: So, brothers and sisters,
be strong and immovable.
3: Always work enthusiastically for the Lord,
for you know that nothing you do for him is ever lost or wasted.
1: May the God of peace make you holy in every way;
3: may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless
until the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
2: He who calls you is utterly faithful,
1: and he will finish what he has set out to do.