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
A psalm of David.
Who may worship in your sanctuary, Lord?
Who may enter your presence on your holy hill?
Those who lead blameless lives and do what is right,
speaking the truth from sincere hearts.
Those who refuse to gossip
or harm their neighbours
or speak evil of their friends.
Those who despise flagrant sinners,
and honour the faithful followers of the Lord,
and keep their promises even when it hurts.
Those who lend money without charging interest,
and who cannot be bribed to lie about the innocent.
Such people will stand firm forever.
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
Those insects will make you unclean, and anyone who touches the dead body of one of these insects will become unclean until evening. Anyone who picks up one of these dead insects must wash his clothes and be unclean until evening.
“‘Some animals have split hoofs, but the hoofs are not completely divided; others do not chew the cud. They are unclean for you, and anyone who touches the dead body of one of these animals will become unclean. Of all the animals that walk on four feet, the animals that walk on their paws are unclean for you. Anyone who touches the dead body of one of these animals will become unclean until evening. Anyone who picks up their dead bodies must wash his clothes and be unclean until evening; these animals are unclean for you.
“‘These crawling animals are unclean for you: moles, rats, all kinds of great lizards, geckos, crocodiles, lizards, sand reptiles, and chameleons. These crawling animals are unclean for you; anyone who touches their dead bodies will be unclean until evening.
“‘If an unclean animal dies and falls on something, that item will also become unclean. This includes anything made from wood, cloth, leather, or rough cloth, regardless of its use. Whatever the animal falls on must be washed with water and be unclean until evening; then it will become clean again. If the dead, unclean animal falls into a clay bowl, anything in the bowl will become unclean, and you must break the bowl. If water from the unclean clay bowl gets on any food, that food will become unclean. If any dead, unclean animal falls on something, it becomes unclean. If it is a clay oven or a clay baking pan, it must be broken into pieces. These things will be unclean; they are unclean for you.
“‘A spring or well that collects water will stay clean, but anyone who touches the dead body of any unclean animal will become unclean. If a dead, unclean animal falls on a seed to be planted, that seed is still clean. But if you put water on some seeds and a dead, unclean animal falls on them, they are unclean for you.
“‘Also, if an animal which you use for food dies, anyone who touches its body will be unclean until evening. Anyone who eats meat from this animal’s dead body must wash his clothes and be unclean until evening. Anyone who picks up the animal’s dead body must wash his clothes and be unclean until evening.
“‘Every animal that crawls on the ground is to be hated; it must not be eaten. You must not eat any of the animals that crawl on the ground, including those that crawl on their stomachs, that walk on all four feet, or on many feet. They are to be hated. Do not make yourself unclean by these animals; you must not become unclean by them. I am the Lord your God. Keep yourselves holy for me because I am holy. Don’t make yourselves unclean with any of these crawling animals. I am the Lord who brought you out of Egypt to be your God; you must be holy because I am holy.
“‘These are the teachings about all of the cattle, birds, and other animals on earth, as well as the animals in the sea and those that crawl on the ground. These teachings help people know the difference between unclean animals and clean animals; they help people know which animals may be eaten and which ones must not be eaten.’”
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…)
Holy Spirit, guide us through the rest of our day.
May we know your wisdom in our hearts,
Your strength in our bodies,
And your peace in our lives. 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.