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 the 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
For the choir director: A psalm of Asaph, to be accompanied by a stringed instrument.
Sing praises to God, our strength.
Sing to the God of Jacob.
Sing! Beat the tambourine.
Play the sweet lyre and the harp.
Blow the ram’s horn at new moon,
and again at full moon to call a festival!
For this is required by the decrees of Israel;
it is a regulation of the God of Jacob.
He made it a law for Israel
when he attacked Egypt to set us free.
I heard an unknown voice say,
“Now I will take the load from your shoulders;
I will free your hands from their heavy tasks.
You cried to me in trouble, and I saved you;
I answered out of the thundercloud
and tested your faith when there was no water at Meribah. Interlude
“Listen to me, O my people, while I give you stern warnings.
O Israel, if you would only listen to me!
You must never have a foreign god;
you must not bow down before a false god.
For it was I, the Lord your God,
who rescued you from the land of Egypt.
Open your mouth wide, and I will fill it with good things.
“But no, my people wouldn’t listen.
Israel did not want me around.
So I let them follow their own stubborn desires,
living according to their own ideas.
Oh, that my people would listen to me!
Oh, that Israel would follow me, walking in my paths!
How quickly I would then subdue their enemies!
How soon my hands would be upon their foes!
Those who hate the Lord would cringe before him;
they would be doomed forever.
But I would feed you with the finest wheat.
I would satisfy you with wild honey from the rock.”
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
What the Lord Wants You to Do
Now, Israel, this is what the Lord your God wants you to do: Respect the Lord your God, and do what he has told you to do. Love him. Serve the Lord your God with your whole being, and obey the Lord’s commands and laws that I am giving you today for your own good.
The Lord owns the world and everything in it—the heavens, even the highest heavens, are his. But the Lord cared for and loved your ancestors, and he chose you, their descendants, over all the other nations, just as it is today. Give yourselves completely to serving him, and do not be stubborn any longer. The Lord your God is God of all gods and Lord of all lords. He is the great God, who is strong and wonderful. He does not take sides, and he will not be talked into doing evil. He helps orphans and widows, and he loves foreigners and gives them food and clothes. You also must love foreigners, because you were foreigners in Egypt. Respect the Lord your God and serve him. Be loyal to him and make your promises in his name. He is the one you should praise; he is your God, who has done great and wonderful things for you, which you have seen with your own eyes. There were only seventy of your ancestors when they went down to Egypt, and now the Lord your God has made you as many as the stars in the sky.
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…)
Mighty God, as we come to the end of our week,
Grant your blessings over all we love and your increase upon all we do,
We ask this in Jesus name. 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.