In the church calendar the long stretch of time between Pentecost and the beginning of Advent is known as ‘Ordinary Time.’ Inasmuch as we have celebrated to birth, death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus and the subsequent descent of the Holy Spirit; so this time is often seen as representative of the long ‘Church Age’ when the gospel is preached to all creation.
CALL TO WORSHIP
God, come to my assistance.
Lord, make haste to help me.
All glory to God; Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
As it has been from the beginning, is today and forever! Amen
You know of my shame, scorn, and disgrace.
You see all that my enemies are doing.
Their insults have broken my heart,
and I am in despair.
If only one person would show some pity;
if only one would turn and comfort me.
But instead, they give me poison for food;
they offer me sour wine for my thirst.
Let the bountiful table set before them become a snare
and their prosperity become a trap.
Let their eyes go blind so they cannot see,
and make their bodies shake continually.
Pour out your fury on them;
consume them with your burning anger.
Let their homes become desolate
and their tents be deserted.
To the one you have punished, they add insult to injury;
they add to the pain of those you have hurt.
Pile their sins up high,
and don’t let them go free.
Erase their names from the Book of Life;
don’t let them be counted among the righteous.
I am suffering and in pain.
Rescue me, O God, by your saving power.
Then I will praise God’s name with singing,
and I will honor him with thanksgiving.
For this will please the Lord more than sacrificing cattle,
more than presenting a bull with its horns and hooves.
The humble will see their God at work and be glad.
Let all who seek God’s help be encouraged.
For the Lord hears the cries of the needy;
he does not despise his imprisoned people.
Praise him, O heaven and earth,
the seas and all that move in them.
For God will save Jerusalem
and rebuild the towns of Judah.
His people will live there
and settle in their own land.
The descendants of those who obey him will inherit the land,
and those who love him will live there in safety.
Glory be to the Father and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen
(A short time of worship and thanksgiving, led or spontaneous. Alternatively a devotional song may be played and listened to.)
OLD TESTAMENT READING
Rules About What May Be Eaten
The Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “Tell the Israelites this: ‘These are the land animals you may eat: You may eat any animal that has split hoofs completely divided and that chews the cud.
“‘Some animals only chew the cud or only have split hoofs, and you must not eat them. The camel chews the cud but does not have a split hoof; it is unclean for you. The rock badger chews the cud but does not have a split hoof; it is unclean for you. The rabbit chews the cud but does not have a split hoof; it is unclean for you. Now the pig has a split hoof that is completely divided, but it does not chew the cud; it is unclean for you. You must not eat the meat from these animals or even touch their dead bodies; they are unclean for you.
“‘Of the animals that live in the sea or in a river, if the animal has fins and scales, you may eat it. But whatever lives in the sea or in a river and does not have fins and scales—including the things that fill the water and all other things that live in it—you should hate. You must not eat any meat from them or even touch their dead bodies, because you should hate them. You must hate any animal in the water that does not have fins and scales.
“‘Also, these are the birds you are to hate. They are hateful and should not be eaten. You must not eat eagles, vultures, black vultures, kites, any kind of falcon, any kind of raven, horned owls, screech owls, sea gulls, any kind of hawk, little owls, cormorants, great owls, white owls, desert owls, ospreys, storks, any kind of heron, hoopoes, or bats.
“‘Don’t eat insects that have wings and walk on all four feet; they also are to be hated.
“‘But you may eat certain insects that have wings and walk on four feet. You may eat those that have legs with joints above their feet so they can jump. These are the insects you may eat: all kinds of locusts, winged locusts, crickets, and grasshoppers. But all other insects that have wings and walk on four feet you are to hate.
The Word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.
Pause for Reflection……
(Take a moment to bring to God any issues that have arisen during the morning. You may like to end with the following prayer…)
Lord Jesus, you worked with your hands as a carpenter.
May we who labour upon the earth never cease to give you praise,
And know your loving presence with us.
We ask this for your glory. Amen
Lord God, we thank you for your gift to us of this food;
Produce of earth, sky, many living beings, and much hard work.
May we eat with prayerfulness, gratitude and moderation;
With renewed minds and spirit-controlled appetites.
May we eat with compassion for those who hunger today,
And in such a way that reduces the suffering of all creatures;
Healing and preserving our precious planet.
Use this food to strengthen our bodies, revive our spirits,
Nurture our family and nourish our resolve;
That we may continue to serve all that lives with all our life. Amen
Psalms in Bold – Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved
All other Psalms – Scripture quotations are taken from The Living Bible copyright © 1971. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, a Division of Tyndale House Ministries, Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
All other Scripture taken from The Holy Bible, New Century Version®. Copyright © 2005 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.