Thursday, August 6, 2015

The Apocalyptic Discourse - 19th Sunday of Ordinary Time [Proper 14]


     

Genesis 6:1-8 OR Zechariah 9:1-8 (9-12) 13-17
Psalm 37: (1-2) 12-38 (39-40)
Matthew 24:(36-44) 45-51 OR Luke 12:(35-40) 41-48
1Corinthians 11:2-22 (23-26) 27-34

Opening Prayer [from GREATER ATTENTION: LERW, YEAR D]
Lord Jesus Christ, we know neither the day nor the hour when you will come again to gather up your church or to stand upon the earth, but we do know that we are to remain awake, dressed and ready for action, with our lamps lit as servants awaiting the return of their Master. To think, even for a moment, that you are delayed is to risk falling asleep, and therefore, we invite you to draw near to us now, for you have promised to do so, saying, “I am with you always.” Therefore, by the swift wind of your Spirit, raise our expectations, O Lord. Let no one go through the motions of worship without becoming acutely aware that you are near, indeed, that you are here, watching, waiting, examining every heart. Surely you will speak, O Lord, through the Word, written, read, and preached, and you will feed your people—you, the Christ, the living bread, you, the Holy Spirit, of whom we all partake as we drink from same spiritual drink, the spiritual rock of Christ.


Friday, July 31, 2015

The Apocalyptic Discourse - 18th Sunday of Ordinary Time [Proper 13]


    

Genesis 19:1-29
Psalm 59
Matthew 24:23-35 (36-44) OR Luke 17:20-37
1John 2:3-29 OR 2John OR 2Peter 2:1-22

CALL TO CONFESSION [from GREATER ATTENTION: LERW, YEAR D]
Love, in truth, is not permissiveness, but it aspires to perfection, for “whoever obeys God’s word, truly in this person the love of God has reached perfection.” But where destructive opinions are introduced, the way of truth is maligned, and those with unsteady souls, enticed from the way of love by the lures of licentiousness, become irrational creatures of instinct, insatiable for sin, reveling in dissipation, with eyes full of adultery and hearts trained in greed. As the proverb says, “The sow is washed only to wallow in the mud.” Therefore, friends, let us turn away from every evil thought, word, and deed, that we might not suffer the penalty for wrongdoing. Rather, let us seek the merciful grace of Jesus Christ, whose commandment is love and whose name is truth, for the darkness is passing away and the true light is already shining.


Sunday, July 26, 2015

The Apocalyptic Discourse - 17th Sunday in Ordinary Time [Proper 12]

Deuteronomy 4:32-40 OR Isaiah 65:10-65 OR Ezekiel 7:(1-9) 10-27
OR Zechariah 14:(1-3) 4-9 (10-21)
Psalm 50: (7-8) 9-21 (22-23) OR 105:(1-6) 12-15, 26-36 (37, 43-45)
Matthew 24:15-22 OR Mark 13:14-20 OR Luke 21:20-24
1Corinthians 10:(14-17) 18-11:1



    

PRAYER OF CONFESSION [from GREATER ATTENTION: LERW, YEAR D]
Holy and merciful God, we confess that we have acted wickedly. We have forgotten your words, cast off discipline, and spoken against those whom you love. We all too quickly assume that you are just like us, that we know your mind, that we may speak judgment against others with impunity. Forgive us, O Lord, for we have too often forgotten how far you have come and how much you have done to save us from death, depravity, and despair. We have neglected to pay our vows to you, to whom we have promised lifelong loyalty. Cleanse us from every sin, forgive our every transgression, wash us thoroughly in the blood of the Lamb, our Lord Jesus Christ, and receive once again our sacrifice of thanks and praise. This we ask in his name.

Friday, July 17, 2015

The Apocalyptic Discourse — 16th Sunday in Ordinary Time [Proper 11]

Deuteronomy 31:23–29 or Micah 7:1–7 or Daniel (11:40–45) 12:1–13
Psalm 54
Matthew 10:17–22a; 24:9–14 or Mark 13:9–13
1 Corinthians 9:1–15

OPENING PRAYER [from GREATER ATTENTION: LERW, YEAR D]
O Lord our protector, we live in troubled times, when many run to and fro in pursuit of vain things, and lawlessness increases. Nevertheless, in Jesus Christ you deliver your people from death to life, everyone who is found written in your book of life. Speak to us once more of eternal things: of life and love, of your holy splendor and your complete joy, that we may gain wisdom and shine with your glory like the brightness of the sky, like the stars forever and ever. This we ask in the name of your Son and our Lord, Jesus Christ, the Sun of Righteousness.

For homiletical commentary on these texts, follow the link.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

The Apocalyptic Discourse - 15th Sunday in Ordinary Time [Proper 10]

Jeremiah 7:1–15 or Daniel 2:1–49
Psalm 17:8–14 (15) or 83
Matthew 24:1–8 (or Mark 13:1–8)
1 Corinthians 7:1–40

OPENING PRAYER [see Daniel 2:20–23, 47] [from GREATER ATTENTION: LERW, YEAR D]
Blessed be your name, O God, from age to age, for wisdom and power are yours! Truly, you are God of gods and Lord of kings and a revealer of mysteries! You change times and seasons, depose and establish rulers, give wisdom to the wise, and knowledge to the understanding. You reveal deep and hidden things; you know what is in the darkness, and light dwells with you. To you, O God of our ancestors, we give thanks and praise, for you give your faithful ones wisdom and power, and reveal yourself to those who seek you. Draw near to us now, we pray, as we gather in your presence to magnify your holy name.

NB: Here is some related homiletical commentary on these texts.

Monday, July 6, 2015

A freedom better than independence

Now that the Independence Day celebrations are behind us for another year, why not read about and celebrate the far greater, eternal freedom promised by the gospel of Jesus Christ?


Monday, June 29, 2015

14th Sunday in Ordinary Time [Proper 9]


2Kings 6:8-23
Psalm 57 OR 3
Matthew 12:38-50 OR Luke 11:24-36
1Corinthians 5:1-5 (6-8) 9-13; 6:1-11


OPENING PRAYER [from GREATER ATTENTION: LERW, YEAR D]
O LORD our refuge, you have spoken through your prophets and your teachers of wisdom, yet you are among us as one greater still! You have expanded our understanding of family, saying, whoever does the will of our heavenly Father is a brother or sister of Jesus Christ the Son. Yet one far greater than the church is here! Yes, you are here, for so you have promised to be present in the Spirit where your followers are gathered in your name, you who were three days in the heart of the earth and are now seated at the right hand of power. Therefore, awaken us to the nearness of your presence, speak to us with the power of our risen Lord Jesus, and give us courage and determination to obey, for we are eager to receive the blessing you promised when you said, “Blessed are those who hear the word of God and obey it!”

Monday, June 22, 2015

13th Sunday in Ordinary Time [Proper 8]



2Kings 20:1-21 or Amos 4:1-3 or Malachi 3:6-18 (4:1-6)
Psalm 56
Matthew 9:27-34 or John 5:31-47
1Corinthians 3:12-15 (3:16-4:5) 4:6-21 or 2John


      

 

CALL TO WORSHIP [from GREATER ATTENTION: LERW, YEAR D]
May grace, mercy, and peace be with us from God the Father
and from Jesus Christ, the Father’s Son, in truth and love.
         Let our service to God and our faith in Christ Jesus
         be a spectacle to the world, to angels and to mortals. 
If we are fools for the sake of Christ, let others become wise in him.
If we are weak, may they become are strong.
         When reviled, we shall bless; when persecuted, we shall endure;
         when slandered, we shall speak kindly.
For even if we are like the rubbish of the world, the dregs of all things,
We know that the Lord himself has received as much from the world.
         Therefore, in God, whose word I praise, in God I trust;
         I am not afraid; what can flesh do to me?
My vows to you I must perform, O God;
I will render thank offerings to you.
         For you have delivered my soul from death,and my feet from falling,
         so that I may walk before you in the light of life.