Year V: Week 8 of Ordinary Time

Monday: Morning Prayer

ABOUT TODAY

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. Because of that, our intercessions during this period will include prayers for every single nation of the world by name.


CALL TO WORSHIP

Reader:
Lord, Open my lips.
All: 
And my mouth will give you praise.

Reader:
All glory to God; Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
All:
As it has been from the beginning, is today and forever! Amen


INVITATORY PSALM:

Psalm 95:1-7 (Venite, exultemus)

All:

Come, let us sing to the Lord!
Let us shout joyfully to the Rock of our salvation.
Let us come to him with thanksgiving.
Let us sing psalms of praise to him.
For the Lord is a great God,
a great King above all gods.
He holds in his hands the depths of the earth
and the mightiest mountains.
The sea belongs to him, for he made it.
His hands formed the dry land, too.

Come, let us worship and bow down.
Let us kneel before the Lord our maker,
for he is our God.
We are the people he watches over,
the flock under his care.

All:  
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


MORNING PSALM

Psalm 96

Sing a new song to the Lord!
    Let the whole earth sing to the Lord!
Sing to the Lord; praise his name.
    Each day proclaim the good news that he saves.
Publish his glorious deeds among the nations.
    Tell everyone about the amazing things he does.
Great is the Lord! He is most worthy of praise!
    He is to be feared above all gods.
The gods of other nations are mere idols,
    but the Lord made the heavens!
Honour and majesty surround him;
    strength and beauty fill his sanctuary.

O nations of the world, recognize the Lord;
    recognize that the Lord is glorious and strong.
Give to the Lord the glory he deserves!
    Bring your offering and come into his courts.
Worship the Lord in all his holy splendour.
    Let all the earth tremble before him.
Tell all the nations, “The Lord reigns!”
    The world stands firm and cannot be shaken.
    He will judge all peoples fairly.

Let the heavens be glad, and the earth rejoice!
    Let the sea and everything in it shout his praise!
Let the fields and their crops burst out with joy!
    Let the trees of the forest sing for joy
before the Lord, for he is coming!
    He is coming to judge the earth.
He will judge the world with justice,
    and the nations with his truth.

All:  
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


WORSHIP

All:  
(A time of worship and thanksgiving, led or spontaneous.  Alternatively a devotional song may be played and listened to.)


PRAYER & INTERCESSION

Reader:
Let us pray for the day and its tasks, for the church and her life, and for the world and its needs.

(You may use these prayers as written or use them as ‘prayer pointers’ for your own spontaneous petitions.

Personal Requests

  • Almighty God, we thank you for the start of a new week and trust you for the power to serve you with courage and boldness. Give us wisdom in our work life, persistence in our prayer life, diligence to fulfil our responsibilities and rest in our times of relaxation.
              – I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy of praise…
  • For the power to overcome sin, the determination to overcome obstacles and the stubbornness to overcome evil.
              – I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy of praise…
  • For bodily health, spiritual intensity, mental clarity, and physical provision.
              – I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy of praise…
  • For protection from every attack, safety from every danger, freedom from every fear and victory over every temptation.
              – I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy of praise…

 Family & Friends

  • Father of all, bless our families and those who we spend time with. May their paths be straight and their road untroubled, and may they experience a quiet and peaceful life in all godliness and true happiness.
              – I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy of praise…
  • Bring those who don’t know you into a saving relationship with your Son.
              – I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy of praise…
  • Bring healing to those who are sick, companionship to those who struggle alone and joy to those who mourn.
              – I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy of praise…

The Church

  • Lord Jesus, we ask for blessings upon your church, that families may be strongly defended, children powerfully protected and leaders heavily anointed! Equip the local church to reach the city and empower your people to reach the world.
              – I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy of praise…
  • For the members of our church, as they head to their places of work…
              – I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy of praise…
  • For those teachers and students, and the work of God in schools and places of further education.
              – I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy of praise…

The World

  • Lord Jesus, we join with you at the Throne of Grace and pray for humanity.  Today we pray for the people of El Salvador, especially those who are still battling through the physical and psychological wounds of the 12-year civil war. We pray for peace and reconciliation to fill this nation.
              – I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy of praise…
  • Thank you for the 9,000 Churches which have been planted in the last decade in this country.  Continue to pour out your spirit on this God-hungry nation we pray.  May revival some powerfully in Latin America.
              – I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy of praise…
  • For those caught in the poverty trap, living in houses made from cardboard. May they find sanctuary in your house and find hope for their future.
              – I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy of praise…
  • We pray for effective methods for reaching the youth of El Salvador. May they find refuge in you rather than in gangs and violence.
              – I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy of praise…
  • Jesus, over 50 times in scripture you bring healing to people and groups in need of health and wholeness, today we ask you to heal those who are infected by Covid-19.
              – I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy of praise…

 

THE LORD’S PRAYER

Reader: 
And so we pray…

All:   
Our Father in heaven,
Holy is Your Name.
Your Kingdom come.
Your will be done,
On earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread;
And forgive us our trespasses,
As we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
But deliver us from evil.
For yours is the kingdom,
The power, and the glory,
Forever and ever.  Amen.


GOSPEL READING

Acts 23:12-35

In the morning some evil people made a plan to kill Paul, and they took an oath not to eat or drink anything until they had killed him. There were more than forty men who made this plan. They went to the leading priests and the elders and said, “We have taken an oath not to eat or drink until we have killed Paul. So this is what we want you to do: Send a message to the commander to bring Paul out to you as though you want to ask him more questions. We will be waiting to kill him while he is on the way here.”

But Paul’s nephew heard about this plan and went to the army building and told Paul. Then Paul called one of the officers and said, “Take this young man to the commander. He has a message for him.”

So the officer brought Paul’s nephew to the commander and said, “The prisoner, Paul, asked me to bring this young man to you. He wants to tell you something.”

The commander took the young man’s hand and led him to a place where they could be alone. He asked, “What do you want to tell me?”

The young man said, “The Jews have decided to ask you to bring Paul down to their council meeting tomorrow. They want you to think they are going to ask him more questions. But don’t believe them! More than forty men are hiding and waiting to kill Paul. They have all taken an oath not to eat or drink until they have killed him. Now they are waiting for you to agree.”

The commander sent the young man away, ordering him, “Don’t tell anyone that you have told me about their plan.”

Paul Is Sent to Caesarea

Then the commander called two officers and said, “I need some men to go to Caesarea. Get two hundred soldiers, seventy horsemen, and two hundred men with spears ready to leave at nine o’clock tonight. Get some horses for Paul to ride so he can be taken to Governor Felix safely.” And he wrote a letter that said:

From Claudius Lysias.

To the Most Excellent Governor Felix:

Greetings.

Some of the Jews had taken this man and planned to kill him. But I learned that he is a Roman citizen, so I went with my soldiers and saved him. I wanted to know why they were accusing him, so I brought him before their council meeting. I learned that these people said Paul did some things that were wrong by their own laws, but no charge was worthy of jail or death. When I was told that some of them were planning to kill Paul, I sent him to you at once. I also told them to tell you what they have against him.

So the soldiers did what they were told and took Paul and brought him to the city of Antipatris that night. The next day the horsemen went with Paul to Caesarea, but the other soldiers went back to the army building in Jerusalem. When the horsemen came to Caesarea and gave the letter to the governor, they turned Paul over to him. The governor read the letter and asked Paul, “What area are you from?” When he learned that Paul was from Cilicia, he said, “I will hear your case when those who are against you come here, too.” Then the governor gave orders for Paul to be kept under guard in Herod’s palace.

Reader:      
The Word of the Lord.
All:  
Thanks be to God.


Pause for Reflection…

READING: THE WAY OF CHRIST (Optional)

Principle of discipleship drawn from the book, “The Way of Christ”

Reader:
The Way of Community: The Principle of Celebration.

Recognising the power of corporate witness and worship, I prioritise the Sunday gatherings of my church, committing to being a contributor and not just a consumer. As a follower of the Way of Community, I will find a place to serve within the church and arrive on time, with an expectant heart and a cheerful spirit.

All:
This is The Way of Community: The Principle of Celebration.


Pause for Reflection…


THE APOSTLES CREED

Reader
And so we make our declaration of faith…

All:  
We believe in God the Father, Almighty,
Maker of heaven and earth:
And in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord,
Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
Born of the Virgin Mary,
Suffered under Pontius Pilate,
Was crucified, dead, and buried:
He descended into the grave;
The third day he rose again from the dead;
He ascended into heaven,
And sits on the right hand of God the Father Almighty;
From there he shall come to judge the living and the dead.
We believe in the Holy Spirit;
The Holy Worldwide Church;
The Communion of Saints;
The Forgiveness of sins;
The Resurrection of the body,
And the Life everlasting.  Amen.


COLLECT

Reader:
(Either this or an alternative closing prayer may be said.)

Holy God, Faithful and unchanging:
Enlarge our minds with the knowledge of your truth,
And draw us more deeply into the mystery of your love,
That we may truly worship you,
Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
One God, now and for ever.  Amen.


BLESSING

Reader:
(When praying in community, this or a similar blessing may be used)

And may the Wisdom of God, the Love of God,
And the Grace of God strengthen you,
To be Christ’s hands and heart in this world.
In the name of the One who creates,
Redeems, and sustains all things.  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.

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