Year V: Week 6 of Ordinary Time

Saturday: Afternoon 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.


CALL TO WORSHIP

Reader:
God, come to my assistance.
All: 
Lord, make haste to help me.

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

 

AFTERNOON PSALM

Psalm 78:39-72

For he remembered that they were merely mortal,
    gone like a breath of wind that never returns.

Oh, how often they rebelled against him in the wilderness
    and grieved his heart in that dry wasteland.
Again and again they tested God’s patience
    and provoked the Holy One of Israel.
They did not remember his power
    and how he rescued them from their enemies.
They did not remember his miraculous signs in Egypt,
    his wonders on the plain of Zoan.
For he turned their rivers into blood,
    so no one could drink from the streams.
He sent vast swarms of flies to consume them
    and hordes of frogs to ruin them.
He gave their crops to caterpillars;
    their harvest was consumed by locusts.
He destroyed their grapevines with hail
    and shattered their sycamore-figs with sleet.
He abandoned their cattle to the hail,
    their livestock to bolts of lightning.
He loosed on them his fierce anger—
    all his fury, rage, and hostility.
He dispatched against them
    a band of destroying angels.
He turned his anger against them;
    he did not spare the Egyptians’ lives
    but ravaged them with the plague.
He killed the oldest son in each Egyptian family,
    the flower of youth throughout the land of Egypt.
But he led his own people like a flock of sheep,
    guiding them safely through the wilderness.
He kept them safe so they were not afraid;
    but the sea covered their enemies.
He brought them to the border of his holy land,
    to this land of hills he had won for them.
He drove out the nations before them;
    he gave them their inheritance by lot.
    He settled the tribes of Israel into their homes.

But they kept testing and rebelling against God Most High.
    They did not obey his laws.
They turned back and were as faithless as their parents.
    They were as undependable as a crooked bow.
They angered God by building shrines to other gods;
    they made him jealous with their idols.
When God heard them, he was very angry,
    and he completely rejected Israel.
Then he abandoned his dwelling at Shiloh,
    the Tabernacle where he had lived among the people.
He allowed the Ark of his might to be captured;
    he surrendered his glory into enemy hands.
He gave his people over to be butchered by the sword,
    because he was so angry with his own people—his special possession.
Their young men were killed by fire;
    their young women died before singing their wedding songs.
Their priests were slaughtered,
    and their widows could not mourn their deaths.

Then the Lord rose up as though waking from sleep,
    like a warrior aroused from a drunken stupor.
He routed his enemies
    and sent them to eternal shame.
But he rejected Joseph’s descendants;
    he did not choose the tribe of Ephraim.
He chose instead the tribe of Judah,
    and Mount Zion, which he loved.
There he built his sanctuary as high as the heavens,
    as solid and enduring as the earth.
He chose his servant David,
    calling him from the sheep pens.
He took David from tending the ewes and lambs
    and made him the shepherd of Jacob’s descendants—
    God’s own people, Israel.
He cared for them with a true heart
    and led them with skilful hands.

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 
(Optional)

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


OLD TESTAMENT READING

Leviticus 13:18-46

“Someone may have a boil on his skin that is healed. If in the place where the boil was, there is a white swelling or a bright red spot, this place on the skin must be shown to the priest. And the priest must look at it. If the spot seems deeper than the skin and the hair on it has become white, the priest must announce that the person is unclean. The spot is a harmful skin disease that has broken out from inside the boil. But if the priest looks at the spot and there are no white hairs in it and the spot is not deeper than the skin and it has faded, the priest must separate the person from other people for seven days. If the spot spreads on the skin, the priest must announce that the person is unclean; it is a disease that will spread. But if the bright spot does not spread or change, it is only the scar from the old boil. Then the priest must announce that the person is clean.

“When a person gets a burn on his skin, if the open sore becomes white or red, the priest must look at it. If the white spot seems deeper than the skin and the hair at that spot has become white, it is a harmful skin disease. The disease has broken out in the burn, and the priest must announce that the person is unclean. It is a harmful skin disease. But if the priest looks at the spot and there is no white hair in the bright spot, and the spot is no deeper than the skin and has faded, the priest must separate the person from other people for seven days. On the seventh day the priest must look at him again. If the spot has spread on the skin, the priest must announce that the person is unclean. It is a harmful skin disease. But if the bright spot has not spread on the skin but has faded, it is the swelling from the burn. The priest must announce that the person is clean, because the spot is only a scar from the burn.

“When a man or a woman gets a sore on the scalp or on the chin, a priest must look at the sore. If it seems deeper than the skin and the hair around it is thin and yellow, the priest must announce that the person is unclean. It is an itch, a harmful skin disease of the head or chin. But if the priest looks at it and it does not seem deeper than the skin and there is no black hair in it, the priest must separate the person from other people for seven days. On the seventh day the priest must look at the sore. If it has not spread, and there are no yellow hairs growing in it, and the sore does not seem deeper than the skin, the person must shave himself, but he must not shave the sore place. The priest must separate that person from other people for seven more days. On the seventh day the priest must look at the sore. If it has not spread on the skin and it does not seem deeper than the skin, the priest must announce that the person is clean. So the person must wash his clothes and become clean. But if the sore spreads on the skin after the person has become clean, the priest must look at him again. If the sore has spread on the skin, the priest doesn’t need to look for the yellowish hair; the person is unclean. But if the priest thinks the sore has stopped spreading, and black hair is growing in it, the sore has healed. The person is clean, and the priest must announce that he is clean.

“When a man or a woman has white spots on the skin, a priest must look at them. If the spots on the skin are dull white, the disease is only a harmless rash. That person is clean.

“When anyone loses hair from his head and is bald, he is clean. If he loses hair from the front of his head and has a bald forehead, he is clean. But if there is a red-white sore on his bald head or forehead, it is a skin disease breaking out in those places. A priest must look at that person. If the swelling of the sore on his bald head or forehead is red-white, like a skin disease that spreads, that person has a skin disease. He is unclean. The priest must announce that the person is unclean because of the sore on his head.

“If a person has a skin disease that spreads, he must warn other people by shouting, ‘Unclean, unclean!’ His clothes must be torn at the seams, he must let his hair stay uncombed, and he must cover his mouth. That person will be unclean the whole time he has the disease; he is unclean. He must live alone outside the camp.

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


Pause for Reflection……


PRAYER 

(Take a moment to bring to God any issues that have arisen during the morning.  You may like to end with the following prayer…)

Reader:
Lord Jesus we thank you for the many blessings of this day,
Give us eyes to see the path ahead,
And faith to reach towards the prize.  Amen

 

GRACE (Optional)

Reader:

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.

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Year V: Week 6 of Ordinary Time

Saturday: 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 78:1-38

A psalm of Asaph.

O my people, listen to my instructions.
    Open your ears to what I am saying,
    for I will speak to you in a parable.
I will teach you hidden lessons from our past—
    stories we have heard and known,
    stories our ancestors handed down to us.
We will not hide these truths from our children;
    we will tell the next generation
about the glorious deeds of the Lord,
    about his power and his mighty wonders.
For he issued his laws to Jacob;
    he gave his instructions to Israel.
He commanded our ancestors
    to teach them to their children,
so the next generation might know them—
    even the children not yet born—
    and they in turn will teach their own children.
So each generation should set its hope anew on God,
    not forgetting his glorious miracles
    and obeying his commands.
Then they will not be like their ancestors—
    stubborn, rebellious, and unfaithful,
    refusing to give their hearts to God.

The warriors of Ephraim, though armed with bows,
    turned their backs and fled on the day of battle.
They did not keep God’s covenant
    and refused to live by his instructions.
They forgot what he had done—
    the great wonders he had shown them,
the miracles he did for their ancestors
    on the plain of Zoan in the land of Egypt.
For he divided the sea and led them through,
    making the water stand up like walls!
In the daytime he led them by a cloud,
    and all night by a pillar of fire.
He split open the rocks in the wilderness
    to give them water, as from a gushing spring.
He made streams pour from the rock,
    making the waters flow down like a river!

Yet they kept on sinning against him,
    rebelling against the Most High in the desert.
They stubbornly tested God in their hearts,
    demanding the foods they craved.
They even spoke against God himself, saying,
    “God can’t give us food in the wilderness.
Yes, he can strike a rock so water gushes out,
    but he can’t give his people bread and meat.”
When the Lord heard them, he was furious.
    The fire of his wrath burned against Jacob.
    Yes, his anger rose against Israel,
for they did not believe God
    or trust him to care for them.
But he commanded the skies to open;
    he opened the doors of heaven.
He rained down manna for them to eat;
    he gave them bread from heaven.
They ate the food of angels!
    God gave them all they could hold.
He released the east wind in the heavens
    and guided the south wind by his mighty power.
He rained down meat as thick as dust—
    birds as plentiful as the sand on the seashore!
He caused the birds to fall within their camp
    and all around their tents.
The people ate their fill.
    He gave them what they craved.
But before they satisfied their craving,
    while the meat was yet in their mouths,
the anger of God rose against them,
    and he killed their strongest men.
    He struck down the finest of Israel’s young men.

But in spite of this, the people kept sinning.
    Despite his wonders, they refused to trust him.
So he ended their lives in failure,
    their years in terror.
When God began killing them,
    they finally sought him.
    They repented and took God seriously.
Then they remembered that God was their rock,
    that God Most High was their redeemer.
But all they gave him was lip service;
    they lied to him with their tongues.
Their hearts were not loyal to him.
    They did not keep his covenant.
Yet he was merciful and forgave their sins
    and did not destroy them all.
Many times he held back his anger
    and did not unleash his fury!

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:
Now we will 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

  • Mighty Lord, you call us at different times to work and to rest. May this weekend bring opportunities for service, for stillness, time for others and occasions for rest.
              – Give thanks to the Lord for His goodness and love lasts forever!
  • Prepare us to receive your Word, our voices to proclaim your gospel and our hands to serve our Lord.
              – Give thanks to the Lord for His goodness and love lasts forever!
  • For hands quick to obey, for minds clean and holy, for speech kind and truthful and for motives pure and godly.
              – Give thanks to the Lord for His goodness and love lasts forever!

 Family & Friends

  • Lord Jesus, you are the friend of sinner’s and elevate the lowly; you lift the weak and heal the broken. Keep me from thoughtlessly following the crowd when my Lord stooped to minister to those on the edges of society. May I find my mission in the margins.
              – Give thanks to the Lord for His goodness and love lasts forever!
  • For vigilance to the call of your Spirit, consideration to the needs of others and concern to the cry of the lost.
              – Give thanks to the Lord for His goodness and love lasts forever!
  • Bring wholeness to my family today. May they be blessed in the city, blessed in the field, and blessed wherever they go.
              – Give thanks to the Lord for His goodness and love lasts forever!
  • Bring salvation to my friends today. May their adversity be your opportunity and their deepest needs be met in the deepest love of Calvary.
              – Give thanks to the Lord for His goodness and love lasts forever!

The Church

  • Lord Jesus, we plead for your people, joining the prayers of the Church on earth with the prayers of the Church that is triumphant in glory. Bring everything to a finish and return for a bride that is spotless and pure!
              – Give thanks to the Lord for His goodness and love lasts forever!
  • For those who lead in worship and those who minister in prayer and advice. May they know genuine anointing and constant refreshing.
              – Give thanks to the Lord for His goodness and love lasts forever!
  • For our Pastors, Leaders, and those in authority. Give them the courage to speak boldly, strength to lead bravely and compassion to love tenderly.
              – Give thanks to the Lord for His goodness and love lasts forever!
  • For Followers who sit at a distance – open their hearts to the fullness of Christ. For Disciples who walk in your footsteps – may they be held by the power of God. For Pilgrims who stand before your throne – may they inspire by the testimony of their lives.
              – Give thanks to the Lord for His goodness and love lasts forever!

The World

  • God of the Nations we stand in the gap and pray for the world.  Today we pray for the people of Cuba, home to 11 million people subject to communism, economic instability and hostility towards those who are believers. Come in power Lord Jesus and drive the Enemy from this land!
              – Give thanks to the Lord for His goodness and love lasts forever!
  • Thank you for the radical faith of your Church. Persecution has caused your followers to strengthen in faith and to become bold in their witness.  Would you pour out your blessing on your people.
              – Give thanks to the Lord for His goodness and love lasts forever!
  • We ask for worship leaders and anointed musicians to proclaim the good news through the gift of music.
              – Give thanks to the Lord for His goodness and love lasts forever!
  • Deliver those caught up in spiritualism, and cut the support that this practice receives from the government. May your Bride shine as a light into the darkness and cut the chains of satanic bondage!
              – Give thanks to the Lord for His goodness and love lasts forever!
  • The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases and your mercies never come to an end! We ask you Jesus, in your mercy, to heal those who are sick with the Coronavirus today!
              – Give thanks to the Lord for His goodness and love lasts forever!


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 19:21-41

After these things, Paul decided to go to Jerusalem, planning to go through the countries of Macedonia and Southern Greece and then on to Jerusalem. He said, “After I have been to Jerusalem, I must also visit Rome.” Paul sent Timothy and Erastus, two of his helpers, ahead to Macedonia, but he himself stayed in Asia for a while.

Trouble in Ephesus

And during that time, there was some serious trouble in Ephesus about the Way of Jesus. A man named Demetrius, who worked with silver, made little silver models that looked like the temple of the goddess Artemis. Those who did this work made much money. Demetrius had a meeting with them and some others who did the same kind of work. He told them, “Men, you know that we make a lot of money from our business. But look at what this man Paul is doing. He has convinced and turned away many people in Ephesus and in almost all of Asia! He says the gods made by human hands are not real. There is a danger that our business will lose its good name, but there is also another danger: People will begin to think that the temple of the great goddess Artemis is not important. Her greatness will be destroyed, and Artemis is the goddess that everyone in Asia and the whole world worships.”

When the others heard this, they became very angry and shouted, “Artemis, the goddess of Ephesus, is great!” The whole city became confused. The people grabbed Gaius and Aristarchus, who were from Macedonia and were traveling with Paul, and ran to the theatre. Paul wanted to go in and talk to the crowd, but the followers did not let him. Also, some leaders of Asia who were friends of Paul sent him a message, begging him not to go into the theatre. Some people were shouting one thing, and some were shouting another. The meeting was completely confused; most of them did not know why they had come together. They put a man named Alexander in front of the people, and some of them told him what to do. Alexander waved his hand so he could explain things to the people. But when they saw that Alexander was a Jew, they all shouted the same thing for two hours: “Great is Artemis of Ephesus!”

Then the city clerk made the crowd be quiet. He said, “People of Ephesus, everyone knows that Ephesus is the city that keeps the temple of the great goddess Artemis and her holy stone that fell from heaven. Since no one can say this is not true, you should be quiet. Stop and think before you do anything. You brought these men here, but they have not said anything evil against our goddess or stolen anything from her temple. If Demetrius and those who work with him have a charge against anyone they should go to the courts and judges where they can argue with each other. If there is something else you want to talk about, it can be decided at the regular town meeting of the people. I say this because some people might see this trouble today and say that we are rioting. We could not explain this, because there is no real reason for this meeting.” After the city clerk said these things, he told the people to go home.

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 Joy: The Principle of Encouragement.

Mindful that God has “made all things richly to enjoy” (1 Timothy 6:17), I choose a life-affirming attitude that encourages, celebrates and blesses all that is noble in life. As a follower of the Way of Joy, I celebrate all that is good in others and take pleasure in the happiness of those around me.

All:
This is The Way of Joy: The Principle of Encouragement.


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.)

God, who in generous mercy sent the Holy Spirit,
Upon your Church in the burning fire of your love:
Grant that your people may be fervent,
In the fellowship of your gospel,
That, always abiding in you,
They may be found steadfast in faith and active in service;
Through Jesus Christ your Son, our Lord,
Who is alive and reigns with you.  Amen


BLESSING

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

And may the beauty of God be reflected in your eyes,
The love of God be embodied in your hands,
The wisdom of God be present in your words
And the knowledge of God be implanted in your heart,
That all might see, and seeing, may believe.  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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Year V: Week 6 of Ordinary Time

Friday: Afternoon 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.


CALL TO WORSHIP

Reader:
God, come to my assistance.
All: 
Lord, make haste to help me.

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

 

AFTERNOON PSALM

Psalm 77

For Jeduthun, the choir director: A psalm of Asaph.

I cry out to God; yes, I shout.
    Oh, that God would listen to me!
When I was in deep trouble,
    I searched for the Lord.
All night long I prayed, with hands lifted toward heaven,
    but my soul was not comforted.
I think of God, and I moan,
    overwhelmed with longing for his help. Interlude

You don’t let me sleep.
    I am too distressed even to pray!
I think of the good old days,
    long since ended,
when my nights were filled with joyful songs.
    I search my soul and ponder the difference now.
Has the Lord rejected me forever?
    Will he never again be kind to me?
Is his unfailing love gone forever?
    Have his promises permanently failed?
Has God forgotten to be gracious?
    Has he slammed the door on his compassion? Interlude

And I said, “This is my fate;
    the Most High has turned his hand against me.”
But then I recall all you have done, O Lord;
    I remember your wonderful deeds of long ago.
They are constantly in my thoughts.
    I cannot stop thinking about your mighty works.

O God, your ways are holy.
    Is there any god as mighty as you?
You are the God of great wonders!
    You demonstrate your awesome power among the nations.
By your strong arm, you redeemed your people,
    the descendants of Jacob and Joseph. Interlude

When the Red Sea saw you, O God,
    its waters looked and trembled!
    The sea quaked to its very depths.
The clouds poured down rain;
    the thunder rumbled in the sky.
    Your arrows of lightning flashed.
Your thunder roared from the whirlwind;
    the lightning lit up the world!
    The earth trembled and shook.
Your road led through the sea,
    your pathway through the mighty waters—
    a pathway no one knew was there!
You led your people along that road like a flock of sheep,
    with Moses and Aaron as their shepherds.

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 
(Optional)

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


OLD TESTAMENT READING

Leviticus 13:1-17

Rules About Skin Diseases

The Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “Someone might have on his skin a swelling or a rash or a bright spot. If the sore looks like a harmful skin disease, the person must be brought to Aaron the priest or to one of Aaron’s sons, the priests. The priest must look at the sore on the person’s skin. If the hair in the sore has become white, and the sore seems deeper than the person’s skin, it is a harmful skin disease. When he has finished looking at the person, the priest must announce that the person is unclean.

“If there is a white spot on a person’s skin, but the spot does not seem deeper than the skin, and if the hair from the spot has not turned white, the priest must separate that person from other people for seven days. On the seventh day the priest must look at the person again. If he sees that the sore has not changed and it has not spread on the skin, the priest must keep the person separated for seven more days. On the seventh day the priest must look at the person again. If the sore has faded and has not spread on the skin, the priest must announce that the person is clean. The sore is only a rash. The person must wash his clothes, and he will become clean again.

“But if the rash spreads again after the priest has announced him clean, the person must come again to the priest. The priest must look at him, and if the rash has spread on the skin, the priest must announce that the person is unclean; it is a harmful skin disease.

“If a person has a harmful skin disease, he must be brought to the priest, and the priest must look at him. If there is a white swelling in the skin, and the hair has become white, and the skin looks raw in the swelling, it is a harmful skin disease. It is one he has had for a long time. The priest must announce that the person is unclean. He will not need to separate that person from other people, because everyone already knows that the person is unclean.

“If the skin disease spreads all over a person’s body, covering his skin from his head to his feet, as far as the priest can see, the priest must look at the person’s whole body. If the priest sees that the disease covers the whole body and has turned all of the person’s skin white, he must announce that the person is clean.

“But when the person has an open sore, he is unclean. When the priest sees the open sore, he must announce that the person is unclean. The open sore is not clean; it is a harmful skin disease. If the open sore becomes white again, the person must come to the priest. The priest must look at him, and if the sores have become white, the priest must announce that the person with the sores is clean. Then he will be clean.

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


Pause for Reflection……


PRAYER 

(Take a moment to bring to God any issues that have arisen during the morning.  You may like to end with the following prayer…)

Reader:
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

 

GRACE (Optional)

Reader:

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.

Standard
Year V: Week 6 of Ordinary Time

Friday: 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 76

For the choir director: A psalm of Asaph. A song to be accompanied by stringed instruments.

God is honoured in Judah;
    his name is great in Israel.
Jerusalem is where he lives;
    Mount Zion is his home.
There he has broken the fiery arrows of the enemy,
    the shields and swords and weapons of war. Interlude

You are glorious and more majestic
    than the everlasting mountains.
Our boldest enemies have been plundered.
    They lie before us in the sleep of death.
    No warrior could lift a hand against us.
At the blast of your breath, O God of Jacob,
    their horses and chariots lay still.

No wonder you are greatly feared!
    Who can stand before you when your anger explodes?
From heaven you sentenced your enemies;
    the earth trembled and stood silent before you.
You stand up to judge those who do evil, O God,
    and to rescue the oppressed of the earth. Interlude
Human defiance only enhances your glory,
    for you use it as a weapon.

Make vows to the Lord your God, and keep them.
    Let everyone bring tribute to the Awesome One.
For he breaks the pride of princes,
    and the kings of the earth fear him.

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:
Now we will 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

  • Mighty Lord forgive us the coldness of our hearts and the rebellion that so often lurks under the surface. Erase the remnant of our old selves and let the power of Jesus Christ reign in our hearts. Renew us in your image, O God, and transform us by your Word.
              – May our prayers be like incense to you…
  • May holiness and true faith reside within us. Give us new hearts to replace the old and a new song with which to praise God!
              – May our prayers be like incense to you…
  • May love and compassion replace sin and selfishness and may what we sing and confess be the reality in our daily lives.
              – May our prayers be like incense to you…

Family & Friends

  • Lord Jesus, our desire is to build a Christ-centred family. May our home be full of peace, beauty, colour, simplicity, and love. May the essence of Christ saturate every heart.
              – May our prayers be like incense to you…
  • May we bring encouragement, comfort, wisdom, and joy to our friends. May they experience our acceptance, loyalty, and faithfulness every day.
              – May our prayers be like incense to you…
  • For those weighed down with crushing burdens, difficult circumstances, and depressing situations. Bring hope and release, O God.
              – May our prayers be like incense to you…
  • Reveal to us how we may show genuine concern for those who do not believe, through caring words and loving deeds.
              – May our prayers be like incense to you…

The Church

  • Lord Jesus, our desire is to live worthy of the call you have made on our lives. Send us into the world as pioneers! Command us to the heights as mountaineers! Give us the spirit that refuses the easy road, the soft choice, and the comfortable life when the cry is heard, “Who will go for us?”
              – May our prayers be like incense to you…
  • For hearts passionate for missions, souls forged in the furnace of adversity, hands trained in the fury of battle and bodies toughened for the use of the Master.
              – May our prayers be like incense to you…
  • For missionaries, evangelists and those who take your word to the nations of the world. Protect, keep, empower, and inspire!
              – May our prayers be like incense to you…

The World

  • Mighty God, the whole world is in your hands and you have compassion on all peoples.  We ask today for the nation of Croatia, still in recovery from a history of conflict and trauma.  We pray that you would bring reconciliation, and that the chains of conflict resulting from ethnic differences would be broken.
              – May our prayers be like incense to you…
  • For the minority groups who have very little exposure to the gospel. Mobilise your Church to reach the unreached and to love the unlovable.
              – May our prayers be like incense to you…
  • We ask that you would continue to restore this nation from the effects of communism. Deliver your people from the scars of the past and bring them into fresh hope for your glory.
              – May our prayers be like incense to you…
  • We intercede and stand with those who are already standing in the gap and praying for the transformation of Croatia. May we see with the eyes of faith a move of your spirit, that every knee would bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord.
              – May our prayers be like incense to you…
  • God, you promised to your people in the wilderness that you would be their healer (Exo 15:26) if they would listen to you and follow your commandments! Forgive us as we have gone our own way, help us follow your voice as you bring healing in our lives.
              – May our prayers be like incense to you…


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 19:1-20

Paul in Ephesus

While Apollos was in Corinth, Paul was visiting some places on the way to Ephesus. There he found some followers and asked them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?”

They said, “We have never even heard of a Holy Spirit.”

So he asked, “What kind of baptism did you have?”

They said, “It was the baptism that John taught.”

Paul said, “John’s baptism was a baptism of changed hearts and lives. He told people to believe in the one who would come after him, and that one is Jesus.”

When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. Then Paul laid his hands on them, and the Holy Spirit came upon them. They began speaking different languages and prophesying. There were about twelve people in this group.

Paul went into the synagogue and spoke out boldly for three months. He talked with the people and persuaded them to accept the things he said about the kingdom of God. But some of them became stubborn. They refused to believe and said evil things about the Way of Jesus before all the people. So Paul left them, and taking the followers with him, he went to the school of a man named Tyrannus. There Paul talked with people every day for two years. Because of his work, every Jew and Greek in Asia heard the word of the Lord.

The Sons of Sceva

God used Paul to do some very special miracles. Some people took handkerchiefs and clothes that Paul had used and put them on the sick. When they did this, the sick were healed and evil spirits left them.

But some people also were traveling around and making evil spirits go out of people. They tried to use the name of the Lord Jesus to force the evil spirits out. They would say, “By the same Jesus that Paul talks about, I order you to come out!” Seven sons of Sceva, a leading priest, were doing this.

But one time an evil spirit said to them, “I know Jesus, and I know about Paul, but who are you?”

Then the man who had the evil spirit jumped on them. Because he was so much stronger than all of them, they ran away from the house naked and hurt. All the people in Ephesus—Jews and Greeks—learned about this and were filled with fear and gave great honour to the Lord Jesus. Many of the believers began to confess openly and tell all the evil things they had done. Some of them who had used magic brought their magic books and burned them before everyone. Those books were worth about fifty thousand silver coins.

So in a powerful way the word of the Lord kept spreading and growing.

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 Joy: The Principle of Blessing Creation.

Understanding that the gospel of great joy is good news to all of creation, and that all of creation is made for the pleasure of God, I seek to live in such a way that maximises the happiness and wholeness of all creation; sentient and non-sentient, spiritual and material. As a follower of the Way of Joy, I refuse to engage in any practice that will bring joy to myself only by diminishing the joy of others.

All:
This is The Way of Joy: The Principle of Blessing Creation.


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.)

Father God, who spoke to our fathers by the prophets,
And has in these days spoken to us by your Son,
Fill us with your Spirit,
That we may speak your Word,
Perform your will,
And fulfil the greater works that you promised,
Through Jesus Christ.  Amen


BLESSING

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

And may the embrace of the Father,
Be the comfort you desire.
The name of the Son,
Be the one on whom you rely.
The presence of the Spirit,
Be with you every hour.
The Three in One,
Be the focus of all your 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.

Standard
Year V: Week 6 of Ordinary Time

Thursday: Afternoon 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.


CALL TO WORSHIP

Reader:
God, come to my assistance.
All: 
Lord, make haste to help me.

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

 

AFTERNOON PSALM

Psalm 75

For the choir director: A psalm of Asaph. A song to be sung to the tune “Do Not Destroy!”

We thank you, O God!
    We give thanks because you are near.
    People everywhere tell of your wonderful deeds.

God says, “At the time I have planned,
    I will bring justice against the wicked.
When the earth quakes and its people live in turmoil,
    I am the one who keeps its foundations firm. Interlude

“I warned the proud, ‘Stop your boasting!’
    I told the wicked, ‘Don’t raise your fists!
Don’t raise your fists in defiance at the heavens
    or speak with such arrogance.’”
For no one on earth—from east or west,
    or even from the wilderness—
    should raise a defiant fist.
It is God alone who judges;
    he decides who will rise and who will fall.
For the Lord holds a cup in his hand
    that is full of foaming wine mixed with spices.
He pours out the wine in judgment,
    and all the wicked must drink it,
    draining it to the dregs.

But as for me, I will always proclaim what God has done;
    I will sing praises to the God of Jacob.
For God says, “I will break the strength of the wicked,
    but I will increase the power of the godly.”

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 
(Optional)

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


OLD TESTAMENT READING

Leviticus 12:1-8

Rules for New Mothers

The Lord said to Moses, “Tell the people of Israel this: ‘If a woman gives birth to a son, she will become unclean for seven days, as she is unclean during her monthly period. On the eighth day the boy must be circumcised. Then it will be thirty-three days before she becomes clean from her loss of blood. She must not touch anything that is holy or enter the Holy Tent until her time of cleansing is finished. But if she gives birth to a daughter, the mother will be unclean for two weeks, as she is unclean during her monthly period. It will be sixty-six days before she becomes clean from her loss of blood.

“‘After she has a son or daughter and her days of cleansing are over, the new mother must bring certain sacrifices to the Meeting Tent. She must give the priest at the entrance a year-old lamb for a burnt offering and a dove or young pigeon for a sin offering. He will offer them before the Lord to make her clean so she will belong to the Lord again; then she will be clean from her loss of blood. These are the teachings for a woman who gives birth to a boy or girl.

“‘If she cannot afford a lamb, she is to bring two doves or two young pigeons, one for a burnt offering and one for a sin offering. In this way the priest will make her clean so she will belong to the Lord again, and she will be clean.’”

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


Pause for Reflection……


PRAYER 

(Take a moment to bring to God any issues that have arisen during the morning.  You may like to end with the following prayer…)

Reader:
Holy Father, we commit to you the work already done today,
Bless the work of our hands and forgive our many errors,
That we may we be empowered to serve you ever more fully.  Amen

 

GRACE (Optional)

Reader:

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.

Standard
Year V: Week 6 of Ordinary Time

Thursday: 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 74

A psalm of Asaph.

O God, why have you rejected us so long?
    Why is your anger so intense against the sheep of your own pasture?
Remember that we are the people you chose long ago,
    the tribe you redeemed as your own special possession!
    And remember Jerusalem, your home here on earth.
Walk through the awful ruins of the city;
    see how the enemy has destroyed your sanctuary.

There your enemies shouted their victorious battle cries;
    there they set up their battle standards.
They swung their axes
    like woodcutters in a forest.
With axes and picks,
    they smashed the carved panelling.
They burned your sanctuary to the ground.
    They defiled the place that bears your name.
Then they thought, “Let’s destroy everything!”
    So they burned down all the places where God was worshiped.

We no longer see your miraculous signs.
    All the prophets are gone,
    and no one can tell us when it will end.
How long, O God, will you allow our enemies to insult you?
    Will you let them dishonour your name forever?
Why do you hold back your strong right hand?
    Unleash your powerful fist and destroy them.

You, O God, are my king from ages past,
    bringing salvation to the earth.
You split the sea by your strength
    and smashed the heads of the sea monsters.
You crushed the heads of Leviathan
    and let the desert animals eat him.
You caused the springs and streams to gush forth,
    and you dried up rivers that never run dry.
Both day and night belong to you;
    you made the starlight and the sun.
You set the boundaries of the earth,
    and you made both summer and winter.

See how these enemies insult you, Lord.
    A foolish nation has dishonoured your name.
Don’t let these wild beasts destroy your turtledoves.
    Don’t forget your suffering people forever.

Remember your covenant promises,
    for the land is full of darkness and violence!
Don’t let the downtrodden be humiliated again.
    Instead, let the poor and needy praise your name.

Arise, O God, and defend your cause.
    Remember how these fools insult you all day long.
Don’t overlook what your enemies have said
    or their growing uproar.

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

  • King of all, fill us today with knowledge of your will with spiritual wisdom and understanding. We want to live a life worthy of you, and to please you in every way. We pray that today we may produce results in every good work, that our heart may be strengthened with all power and courage to do your will.
              – We wait for the Lord, our eternal help…
  • We pray to Jehovah-Jireh for understanding in dealing with our finances, provision for every need and an abundance for every good work.
              – We wait for the Lord, our eternal help…
  • We pray to Jehovah-Rophé for insight in dealing with our flesh, healing for every sickness and strength for every endeavour.
              – We wait for the Lord, our eternal help…
  • We pray to Jehovah-Shalom for wisdom in dealing with the stress of life, calm in every storm and peace in every step.
              – We wait for the Lord, our eternal help…

Family & Friends

  • Father of Jesus, we pray for those we know who do not know you. Give us opportunities to witness to them, grace to speak into their lives and words to bring them into your light.
              – We wait for the Lord, our eternal help…
  • For those we have hurt with thoughtless comments, those we have injured through false words and those we have wounded through selfish actions.
              – We wait for the Lord, our eternal help…
  • For those whose families are fracturing, whose homes are breaking and whose children are suffering. Restore and renew the Covenant, O God!
              – We wait for the Lord, our eternal help…

The Church

  • Lord Jesus, we pray for your church that she will be enriched with spiritual wisdom and discovery in knowing Christ; that her heart will be enlightened, that she will know the hope that is ours, the treasure of your heritage in the saints and your matchless power towards believers.
              – We wait for the Lord, our eternal help…
  • May your people be established and grounded in love; fully able to understand the width, length, height and depth of the love of Christ, which exceeds all knowledge.
              – We wait for the Lord, our eternal help…
  • May your people be filled with the complete measure of the fullness of God. Dwell in your people and take ownership of every part!
              – We wait for the Lord, our eternal help…

The World

  • Lord Jesus, we present to you the world that you created and the people that you died for. Today we pray for the Nation of Costa Rica. Thank you for the continuing work of your gospel amongst the Churches, we pray that you would raise up Fathers and Mothers in the ministry to offer discipleship to your sheep.
              – We wait for the Lord, our eternal help…
  • We pray for the ethnic minorities of Costa Rica, that they would be reached with the light of your truth.
              – We wait for the Lord, our eternal help…
  • Thank you for the continuing work on the mission field to reach your people. Would you go before your missionaries, strengthen them and put your words upon their lips.
              – We wait for the Lord, our eternal help…
  • Move amongst your young people in this Nation. Thank you for the increasing Christian Unions within colleges and universities.  Bless the work of their hands that they may bear eternal fruit.
              – We wait for the Lord, our eternal help…
  • Father, we pray for wisdom for decision makers at this time – leaders, doctors, scientists and politicians. Holy Spirit bring wisdom.
              – We wait for the Lord, our eternal help…


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 18:18-28

Paul Returns to Antioch

Paul stayed with the believers for many more days. Then he left and sailed for Syria, with Priscilla and Aquila. At Cenchrea Paul cut off his hair, because he had made a promise to God. Then they went to Ephesus, where Paul left Priscilla and Aquila. While Paul was there, he went into the synagogue and talked with the people. When they asked him to stay with them longer, he refused. But as he left, he said, “I will come back to you again if God wants me to.” And so he sailed away from Ephesus.

When Paul landed at Caesarea, he went and gave greetings to the church in Jerusalem. After that, Paul went to Antioch. He stayed there for a while and then left and went through the regions of Galatia and Phrygia. He travelled from town to town in these regions, giving strength to all the followers.

Apollos in Ephesus and Corinth

A Jew named Apollos came to Ephesus. He was born in the city of Alexandria and was a good speaker who knew the Scriptures well. He had been taught about the way of the Lord and was always very excited when he spoke and taught the truth about Jesus. But the only baptism Apollos knew about was the baptism that John taught. Apollos began to speak very boldly in the synagogue, and when Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him to their home and helped him better understand the way of God. Now Apollos wanted to go to the country of Southern Greece. So the believers helped him and wrote a letter to the followers there, asking them to accept him. These followers had believed in Jesus because of God’s grace, and when Apollos arrived, he helped them very much. He argued very strongly with the Jews before all the people, clearly proving with the Scriptures that Jesus is the Christ.

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 Joy: The Principle of Sowing Seeds of Joy.

Recognising that all people seek happiness, I seek to be a minister of joy to all people, seeking to ease their human suffering and sow seeds of happiness into their lives. As a follower of the Way of Joy, I will learn to share their burdens in order that they may share my joy.

All:
This is The Way of Joy: The Principle of Sowing Seeds of Joy.


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.)

Lord God, your Son left the riches of heaven,
And became poor for our sake.
When we prosper save us from pride,
When we are needy save us from despair,
That we may trust in you alone,
Through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.


BLESSING

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

And may the love of the Father,
The tenderness of the Son,
And the presence of the Spirit,
Gladden your heart,
And bring peace to your soul,
This day and all days.  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.

Standard
Year V: Week 6 of Ordinary Time

Wednesday: Afternoon 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.


CALL TO WORSHIP

Reader:
God, come to my assistance.
All: 
Lord, make haste to help me.

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

 

AFTERNOON PSALM

Psalm 15

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.

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 
(Optional)

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


OLD TESTAMENT READING

Leviticus 11:24-47

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.’”

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


Pause for Reflection……


PRAYER 

(Take a moment to bring to God any issues that have arisen during the morning.  You may like to end with the following prayer…)

Reader:
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

 

GRACE (Optional)

Reader:

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.

Standard
Year V: Week 6 of Ordinary Time

Wednesday: 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 72

A psalm of Solomon.

Give your love of justice to the king, O God,
    and righteousness to the king’s son.
Help him judge your people in the right way;
    let the poor always be treated fairly.
May the mountains yield prosperity for all,
    and may the hills be fruitful.
Help him to defend the poor,
    to rescue the children of the needy,
    and to crush their oppressors.
May they fear you as long as the sun shines,
    as long as the moon remains in the sky.
    Yes, forever!

May the king’s rule be refreshing like spring rain on freshly cut grass,
    like the showers that water the earth.
May all the godly flourish during his reign.
    May there be abundant prosperity until the moon is no more.
May he reign from sea to sea,
    and from the Euphrates River to the ends of the earth.
Desert nomads will bow before him;
    his enemies will fall before him in the dust.
The western kings of Tarshish and other distant lands
    will bring him tribute.
The eastern kings of Sheba and Seba
    will bring him gifts.
All kings will bow before him,
    and all nations will serve him.

He will rescue the poor when they cry to him;
    he will help the oppressed, who have no one to defend them.
He feels pity for the weak and the needy,
    and he will rescue them.
He will redeem them from oppression and violence,
    for their lives are precious to him.

Long live the king!
    May the gold of Sheba be given to him.
May the people always pray for him
    and bless him all day long.
May there be abundant grain throughout the land,
    flourishing even on the hilltops.
May the fruit trees flourish like the trees of Lebanon,
    and may the people thrive like grass in a field.
May the king’s name endure forever;
    may it continue as long as the sun shines.
May all nations be blessed through him
    and bring him praise.

Praise the Lord God, the God of Israel,
    who alone does such wonderful things.
Praise his glorious name forever!
    Let the whole earth be filled with his glory.
Amen and amen!

(This ends the prayers of David son of Jesse.)

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:
Now we will 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, every morning your grace and glory captivates us! We thank you for a new day and give praise to you who caused light to shine out of darkness. Today by your grace we shall triumph in the works of your hands and we are anointed with fresh oil. Today we shall flourish as palm trees and grow like cedars in Lebanon!
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • Planted in the House of the Lord, we shall thrive in the courts of our God.
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • Being fruitful in every season of life, full of health and vitality!
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…

Family & Friends

  • God, who puts the lonely into families and brings those who are surrounded by debt into prosperity, protect our families and loved ones today. As iron sharpens iron so may our relationships bring us closer to Christ; and as two are better than one, so may we be vigilant to watch over each other and work for each other’s good.
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • When your Spirit came in times past, we read that whole households were saved. We pray for the damaged and broken families of our church and call out to you for salvation for all!
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • For those in further education, that they may find good churches to support them and good friendships to sustain them.
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…

The Church

  • Lord Jesus, we pray for your people. May they be instructed to know your ways, empowered to share their faith, enriched with every blessing, and absorbed with love for you. May your people be one, even as you are one with the Father.
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • For Pope Francis, his bishops, priests, ministers, and all those that serve your people…
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • For our Orthodox brothers and sisters, tested by persecution and triumphant by faith…
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • For the Churches of the Reformation, the Anglican Communion, and the free churches…
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…

The World

  • Lord Jesus, we join with you at the Throne of Grace and pray for humanity.  We ask you for the Republic of Congo, thank you for the faithful martyrs of the land who were prepared to pay the price to see salvation in their nation. We pray that the sacrifice of their lives would be a foundation for a future harvest.
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • The people of Congo are still living in the shadow of previous wars.  We pray for the warlords who are still active that you bring peace into their minds and light into their restless hearts; that their need for violence would cease.
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • We pray for deliverance from the occult practices that effect many; for the thousands of children terrified by witchcraft, for those under oppression from mutilation and cannibalism. We bind the evil spirits that are at work, for your Word says that whatever is bound on earth is bound in heaven.
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • Cause a revival to flow through your Churches, we pray that as your name is lifted high you would draw all men into your Kingdom.
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • Jesus, it is easy to become nervous and panicked in life, yet you God are our refuge and our very present help in this time of trouble. We trust you Jesus!
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…


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 18:1-17

Paul in Corinth

Later Paul left Athens and went to Corinth. Here he met a Jew named Aquila who had been born in the country of Pontus. But Aquila and his wife, Priscilla, had recently moved to Corinth from Italy, because Claudius commanded that all Jews must leave Rome. Paul went to visit Aquila and Priscilla. Because they were tentmakers, just as he was, he stayed with them and worked with them. Every Sabbath day he talked with the Jews and Greeks in the synagogue, trying to persuade them to believe in Jesus.

Silas and Timothy came from Macedonia and joined Paul in Corinth. After this, Paul spent all his time telling people the Good News, showing them that Jesus is the Christ. But they would not accept Paul’s teaching and said some evil things. So he shook off the dust from his clothes and said to them, “If you are not saved, it will be your own fault! I have done all I can do! After this, I will go to other nations.” Paul left the synagogue and moved into the home of Titius Justus, next to the synagogue. This man worshiped God. Crispus was the leader of that synagogue, and he and all the people living in his house believed in the Lord. Many others in Corinth also listened to Paul and believed and were baptized.

During the night, the Lord told Paul in a vision: “Don’t be afraid. Continue talking to people and don’t be quiet. I am with you, and no one will hurt you because many of my people are in this city.” Paul stayed there for a year and a half, teaching God’s word to the people.

Paul Is Brought Before Gallio

When Gallio was the governor of the country of Southern Greece, some people came together against Paul and took him to the court. They said, “This man is teaching people to worship God in a way that is against our law.”

Paul was about to say something, but Gallio spoke, saying, “I would listen to you if you were complaining about a crime or some wrong. But the things you are saying are only questions about words and names—arguments about your own law. So you must solve this problem yourselves. I don’t want to be a judge of these things.” And Gallio made them leave the court.

Then they all grabbed Sosthenes, the leader of the synagogue, and beat him there before the court. But this did not bother Gallio.

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


Pause for Reflection…

READING: THE WAY CHRIST (Optional)

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

Reader:
The Way of Joy: The Principle of Cultivating the Garden of the Heart.

Conscious that my own unhealed pain creates suffering for others, I take refuge in God to heal my sorrow in order that His joy would be my strength and His smile be always upon my lips. As a follower of the Way of Joy, I take responsibility for the garden of my heart, prayerfully transforming seeds of sadness, suffering and affliction, and diligently nurturing the seeds of wonder, joyfulness and hope.

All:
This is The Way of Joy: The Principle of Cultivating the Garden of the Heart.


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.)

Creator God, you made us all in your image:
May we discern you in all that we see,
And serve you in all that we do;
Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


BLESSING

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

And may the love of God set your hearts free,
To live an abundant life overflowing in joy and compassion,
In the service of others. 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.

Standard
Year V: Week 6 of Ordinary Time

Tuesday: Afternoon 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.


CALL TO WORSHIP

Reader:
God, come to my assistance.
All:
Lord, make haste to help me.

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

 

AFTERNOON PSALM

Psalm 69:19-36

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.

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
(Optional)

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


OLD TESTAMENT READING

Leviticus 11:1-23

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.

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


Pause for Reflection……


PRAYER

(Take a moment to bring to God any issues that have arisen during the morning. You may like to end with the following prayer…)

Reader:
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

 

GRACE (Optional)

Reader:

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.

Standard
Year V: Week 6 of Ordinary Time

Tuesday: 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 69:1-18

For the choir director: A psalm of David, to be sung to the tune “Lilies.”

Save me, O God,
    for the floodwaters are up to my neck.
Deeper and deeper I sink into the mire;
    I can’t find a foothold.
I am in deep water,
    and the floods overwhelm me.
I am exhausted from crying for help;
    my throat is parched.
My eyes are swollen with weeping,
    waiting for my God to help me.
Those who hate me without cause
    outnumber the hairs on my head.
Many enemies try to destroy me with lies,
    demanding that I give back what I didn’t steal.

O God, you know how foolish I am;
    my sins cannot be hidden from you.
Don’t let those who trust in you be ashamed because of me,
    O Sovereign Lord of Heaven’s Armies.
Don’t let me cause them to be humiliated,
    O God of Israel.
For I endure insults for your sake;
    humiliation is written all over my face.
Even my own brothers pretend they don’t know me;
    they treat me like a stranger.

Passion for your house has consumed me,
    and the insults of those who insult you have fallen on me.
When I weep and fast,
    they scoff at me.
When I dress in burlap to show sorrow,
    they make fun of me.
I am the favorite topic of town gossip,
    and all the drunks sing about me.

But I keep praying to you, Lord,
    hoping this time you will show me favor.
In your unfailing love, O God,
    answer my prayer with your sure salvation.
Rescue me from the mud;
    don’t let me sink any deeper!
Save me from those who hate me,
    and pull me from these deep waters.
Don’t let the floods overwhelm me,
    or the deep waters swallow me,
    or the pit of death devour me.

Answer my prayers, O Lord,
    for your unfailing love is wonderful.
Take care of me,
    for your mercy is so plentiful.
Don’t hide from your servant;
    answer me quickly, for I am in deep trouble!
Come and redeem me;
    free me from my enemies.

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:
Now we will 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

  • This is the day that the Lord has made – we shall rejoice and be glad in it! Give us open hearts to receive your grace, open minds to receive your Word and heavenly strength to renew our bodies.
              – Let the Redeemed of the Lord say so!
  • Open our eyes to the lonely, the broken, the troubled and the outcasts that cross our path today.
              – Let the Redeemed of the Lord say so!
  • Open our ears to your Spirit and all that we have to those in need, that we may be providers for the poor and ministers to those you want to reach.
              – Let the Redeemed of the Lord say so!

Family & Friends

  • Father of all, we ask for protection over our families and provision for every need. We place them in your hands and ask for your plans to be completed in their lives. May we be an example of faith, endurance, dedication, and grace to those we love.
              – Let the Redeemed of the Lord say so!
  • Bring healing where life has torn us. Bring forgiveness where sin has broken us. Bring restoration where conflict has divided us.
              – Let the Redeemed of the Lord say so!
  • Bring direction to our children, peace to our parents, faith to our friends and happiness to our families.
              – Let the Redeemed of the Lord say so!

The Church

  • Lord Jesus, we pray for your people of every nationality. Forgive our historical separation, cultural divides and selfish ways that have so distorted the face of Christ to the world. Unite us in your love and complete us in your image.
               – Let the Redeemed of the Lord say so!
  • For the churches in our area. Make your ministers shining lights, your churches sunlight in the darkness and people willing in the Day of your Power.
              – Let the Redeemed of the Lord say so!
  • For the work of Churches Together and other ecumenical bodies, that your people may be one…
              – Let the Redeemed of the Lord say so!

The World

  • Mighty God, the people of the world belong to you.  Today we pray for the Island of Comoros, a small Muslim nation which is struggling with the rise of fundamentalism.  We pray for hope to dawn upon this island and for the many precious Muslim people to hear your gospel and receive your life.
              – Let the Redeemed of the Lord say so!
  • We thank you for the small group of believers who are faithfully and secretly continuing to live a life dedicated to you despite harassment and persecution. We pray for a fresh out-pouring of your Holy Spirit in their lives and Godly courage to walk in faith whilst living in a hostile environment.
              – Let the Redeemed of the Lord say so!
  • Thank you for the Christian Radio station which is available to Comorians introducing them to Christ over the airwaves. We pray for an abundance of resources for those sharing your Word.  May every need be met with abundance!
              – Let the Redeemed of the Lord say so!
  • For the disillusioned young people seeking to find solice and hope in drugs. Lord Jesus would you call them by name into your Kingdom and give them the opportunity to hear your gospel of hope.
              – Let the Redeemed of the Lord say so!
  • Holy Spirit you empower Gods people to do ‘even greater works’ to display Gods power. As we pray today for those who are sick with this virus outbreak may your power be seen in their healing!
              – Let the Redeemed of the Lord say so!

 


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 17:16-34

Paul Preaches in Athens

While Paul was waiting for Silas and Timothy in Athens, he was troubled because he saw that the city was full of idols. In the synagogue, he talked with the Jews and the Greeks who worshiped God. He also talked every day with people in the marketplace.

Some of the Epicurean and Stoic philosophers argued with him, saying, “This man doesn’t know what he is talking about. What is he trying to say?” Others said, “He seems to be telling us about some other gods,” because Paul was telling them about Jesus and his rising from the dead. They got Paul and took him to a meeting of the Areopagus, where they said, “Please explain to us this new idea you have been teaching. The things you are saying are new to us, and we want to know what this teaching means.” (All the people of Athens and those from other countries who lived there always used their time to talk about the newest ideas.)

Then Paul stood before the meeting of the Areopagus and said, “People of Athens, I can see you are very religious in all things. As I was going through your city, I saw the objects you worship. I found an altar that had these words written on it: to a god who is not known. You worship a god that you don’t know, and this is the God I am telling you about! The God who made the whole world and everything in it is the Lord of the land and the sky. He does not live in temples built by human hands. This God is the One who gives life, breath, and everything else to people. He does not need any help from them; he has everything he needs. God began by making one person, and from him came all the different people who live everywhere in the world. God decided exactly when and where they must live. God wanted them to look for him and perhaps search all around for him and find him, though he is not far from any of us: ‘By his power we live and move and exist.’ Some of your own poets have said: ‘For we are his children.’ Since we are God’s children, you must not think that God is like something that people imagine or make from gold, silver, or rock. In the past, people did not understand God, and he ignored this. But now, God tells all people in the world to change their hearts and lives. God has set a day that he will judge all the world with fairness, by the man he chose long ago. And God has proved this to everyone by raising that man from the dead!”

When the people heard about Jesus being raised from the dead, some of them laughed. But others said, “We will hear more about this from you later.” So Paul went away from them. But some of the people believed Paul and joined him. Among those who believed was Dionysius, a member of the Areopagus, a woman named Damaris, and some others.

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 Compassion: The Principle of Impartation.

Recognising the intense loss-ness of humanity, I seek to impart the good news of Christ to all within my world. As a follower of the Way of Compassion, I will do this with patience, genuine love and authentic kindness.

All:
This is The Way of Compassion: The Principle of Impartation.


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.)

Gracious Father,
By the obedience of Jesus
You brought salvation to our wayward world:
Draw us into harmony with your will,
That we may find all things restored in him,
Our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.


BLESSING

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

And may the peace of God enfold us,
The love of God uphold us,
And the wisdom of God control us. 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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