Service of Thanksgiving for the Reformation

Opening Sentence of Scripture

“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.” Colossians 3.16


Praise – Psalm 72:17-19

His name for ever shall endure;

Last like the sun it shall:

Men shall be blessed in Him,

and blessed

All nations shall Him call.


Now blessed be the Lord our God,

The God of Israel,

For He alone doth wondrous works,

In glory that excel. 


And blessed be His glorious name

To all eternity:

The whole earth let His glory fill.

Amen, so let it be.


General Confession

Almighty God, our heavenly Father,
you are merciful and kind,
but we have gone our own way,
not loving you as we ought,
nor loving our neighbours as ourselves.
We have sinned against you in thought, word and deed
and in what we have failed to do.
We deserve your condemnation.
Father, forgive us.
Help us to love you and our neighbour,
and to live for your honour and glory;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


Proclamation of God’s forgiveness

“If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.” 1 John 8-10 



Gracious God, our heavenly Father,
we humbly thank you
for all your gifts so freely given:
for life and health and safety,
for work and rest and friendship,
and for the wonder of creation.
We thank you for preserving throughout history
a people for yourself.
Above all, we praise you for our Saviour Jesus Christ,
for his death and resurrection,
for your life-giving Spirit,
and the hope of sharing in your glory.
Fill our hearts with all joy and peace in believing;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.



Old Testament Reading 

2 Chronicles 34

Josiah Reigns in Judah34:1 Josiah was eight years old when he began to reign, and he reigned thirty-one years in Jerusalem. 2 And he did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, and walked in the ways of David his father; and he did not turn aside to the right hand or to the left. 3 For in the eighth year of his reign, while he was yet a boy, he began to seek the God of David his father, and in the twelfth year he began to purge Judah and Jerusalem of the high places, the Asherim, and the carved and the metal images. 4 And they chopped down the altars of the Baals in his presence, and he cut down the incense altars that stood above them. And he broke in pieces the Asherim and the carved and the metal images, and he made dust of them and scattered it over the graves of those who had sacrificed to them. 5 He also burned the bones of the priests on their altars and cleansed Judah and Jerusalem. 6 And in the cities of Manasseh, Ephraim, and Simeon, and as far as Naphtali, in their ruins [1] all around, 7 he broke down the altars and beat the Asherim and the images into powder and cut down all the incense altars throughout all the land of Israel. Then he returned to Jerusalem.

 14 While they were bringing out the money that had been brought into the house of the Lord, Hilkiah the priest found the Book of the Law of the Lord given through Moses. 15 Then Hilkiah answered and said to Shaphan the secretary, “I have found the Book of the Law in the house of the Lord.” And Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan. 16 Shaphan brought the book to the king, and further reported to the king, “All that was committed to your servants they are doing. 17 They have emptied out the money that was found in the house of the Lord and have given it into the hand of the overseers and the workmen.” 18 Then Shaphan the secretary told the king, “Hilkiah the priest has given me a book.” And Shaphan read from it before the king.

19 And when the king heard the words of the Law, he tore his clothes. 20 And the king commanded Hilkiah, Ahikam the son of Shaphan, Abdon the son of Micah, Shaphan the secretary, and Asaiah the king’s servant, saying, 21 “Go, inquire of the Lord for me and for those who are left in Israel and in Judah, concerning the words of the book that has been found. For great is the wrath of the Lord that is poured out on us, because our fathers have not kept the word of the Lord, to do according to all that is written in this book.”

29 Then the king sent and gathered together all the elders of Judah and Jerusalem. 30 And the king went up to the house of the Lord, with all the men of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem and the priests and the Levites, all the people both great and small. And he read in their hearing all the words of the Book of the Covenant that had been found in the house of the Lord. 31 And the king stood in his place and made a covenant before the Lord, to walk after the Lord and to keep his commandments and his testimonies and his statutes, with all his heart and all his soul, to perform the words of the covenant that were written in this book. 32 Then he made all who were present in Jerusalem and in Benjamin join in it. And the inhabitants of Jerusalem did according to the covenant of God, the God of their fathers. 33 And Josiah took away all the abominations from all the territory that belonged to the people of Israel and made all who were present in Israel serve the Lord their God. All his days they did not turn away from following the Lord, the God of their fathers.




Lord, for the years

Your love has kept and guided,

Urged and inspired us,

cheered us on our way,

Sought us and saved us,

pardoned and provided:

Lord of the years,

we bring our thanks today.


Lord, for that Word,

the Word of life which fires us,

Speaks to our hearts

and sets our souls ablaze,

Teaches and trains,

rebukes us and inspires us:

Lord of the Word,

receive Your people’s praise.


Lord, for our land,

in this our generation,

Spirits oppressed by pleasure,

wealth and care:

For young and old,

for this and every nation,

Lord of our land,

be pleased to hear our prayer.


Lord, for our world,

when we disown and doubt Him,

Loveless in strength,

and comfortless in pain,

Hungry and helpless,

lost indeed without Him:

Lord of the world,

we pray that Christ may reign.


Lord for ourselves;

in living power remake us –

Self on the cross and

Christ upon the throne,

Past put behind us,

for the future take us:

Lord of our lives,

to live for Christ alone.

 New Testament Reading

Galatians 3:1-11

By Faith, or by Works of the Law?3:1 O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? It was before your eyes that Jesus Christ was publicly portrayed as crucified. 2 Let me ask you only this: Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law or by hearing with faith? 3 Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by [1] the flesh? 4 Did you suffer [2] so many things in vain—if indeed it was in vain? 5 Does he who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you do so by works of the law, or by hearing with faith— 6 just as Abraham “believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”?


7 Know then that it is those of faith who are the sons of Abraham. 8 And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify [3] the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, “In you shall all the nations be blessed.” 9 So then, those who are of faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith.


The Righteous Shall Live by Faith10 For all who rely on works of the law are under a curse; for it is written, “Cursed be everyone who does not abide by all things written in the Book of the Law, and do them.” 11 Now it is evident that no one is justified before God by the law, for “The righteous shall live by faith.” 



Gracious Father,
your Son Jesus Christ has promised that you will hear us when we ask in faith:
receive the prayers we offer.

We pray for… the nations:
Guide with your wisdom and power the leaders of the nations, so that everyone may live in peace and mutual trust, sharing with justice the resources of the earth. Give the people of this land a spirit of unselfishness, compassion, and fairness in public and private life.
Father, hear our prayer,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

We pray for…the Church:
Send out the light and truth of your gospel and bring people everywhere to know and love you. Enable those who minister among us to commend your truth by their example and teaching. May we gladly receive and obey your word.
Father, hear our prayer,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

We pray for…those in need:
We commend to your fatherly care, merciful God, all who are in sorrow, sickness, discouragement or any other trouble. Give them patience and a firm trust in your goodness. Help those who care for them, and bring us all into the joy of your salvation.
Father, hear our prayer,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

We give thanks for the life and work of the Protestant Reformers.
We praise you for all your servants whose lives have honoured Christ. Encourage us by their example, so that we may run with perseverance the race that lies before us, and share with them the fullness of joy in your kingdom.

Hear us, Father, through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever. Amen.

Choi­­r – “Blessed Assurance”

Offering – Ministry Training Strategy (Ireland)



A safe stronghold our God is still,

A trusty shield and weapon;

He’ll help us clear from all the ill

That has us now o’ertaken.

The ancient prince of hell

Has risen with purpose fell;

Strong mail of craft and power

He weareth in this hour;

On earth is not his fellow.


With force of arms we nothing can,

Full soon were we downridden;

But for us fights the proper Man,

Whom God Himself has bidden.

Ask ye: Who is this same?

Christ Jesus is His Name,

The Lord Sabaoth’s Son;

He and no other one,

Shall conquer in the battle.


And were this world all devils o’er,

And watching to devour us,

We lay it not to heart so sore;

Not they can overpower us.

And let the prince of ill

Look grim as e’er he will,

He harms us not a whit;

For why?  His doom is writ;

A word shall quickly slay him.


God’s word, for all their craft and force,

One moment will not linger,

But, spite of hell, shall have its course;

‘Tis written by His finger.

And, though they take our life,

Goods, honour, children, wife,

Yet is their profit small;

These things shall vanish all;

The city of God remaineth.



Reformation under Josiah 2nd Chronicles 34:1-7, 14-21, 29-33

1. The Word of God was discovered – See Vs. 14


2. The Word of God was read – See Vs. 30


3. The Word of God was obeyed – See Vs. 33



In Christ alone my hope is found,

He is my light, my strength,

my song;

this Corner stone, this solid ground,

firm through the fiercest

drought and storm.


What heights of love,

what depths of peace,

when fears are stilled,

when strivings cease!

My comforter,

my All in All,

here in the love of Christ I stand.

In Christ alone! –

who took on flesh,

fullness of God in helpless babe;

this gift of love and righteousness,

scorned by the ones He came to save:


Till on that cross,

as Jesus died,

the wrath of God was satisfied –

for every sin on Him was laid;

here in the death of Christ I live.


There in the ground His body lay,

Light of the world

by darkness slain;

then bursting forth in glorious day

up from the grave He rose again!


And as He stands in victory

sin’s curse has lost its grip on me,

for I am His and He is mine –

bought with the precious

blood of Christ.


No guilt in life,

no fear in death,

this is the power of Christ in me;

from life’s first cry

to final breath,

Jesus commands my destiny.


No power of hell,

no scheme of man,

can ever pluck me from His hand;

till He returns or calls me home,

here in the power of Christ I’ll stand!


Choir – “God be with you till we meet again”



Closing Prayer and Blessing

Go forth into the world in peace;
be of good courage;
hold fast that which is good;
render to no one evil for evil;
strengthen the fainthearted;
support the weak;
help the afflicted;
honour everyone;
love and serve the Lord,
rejoicing in the power of the Holy Spirit;
and the blessing of God almighty,
the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
be among you and remain with you always. Amen.

Cf. 1 Thessalonians 5:13-22