|The Glory of Christ (detail), by Stephen B. Whatley, ca. 2008.|
Christ has entered, not into a sanctuary made with hands, a copy of the true one, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf. Hebrews 9:24
Compassionate Lord, Your mercies have brought me to the dawn of another day. Vain will be its gift unless I grow in grace, increase in knowledge; ripen for spiritual harvest. Let me this day know You as You are, love You supremely, serve You completely, admire You fully.
Through grace let my will respond to You, knowing that power to obey is not in me, but that Your free love alone enables me to serve You. Here then is my empty heart, overflow it with Your choice gifts; here is my blind understanding, chase away its mists of ignorance. Amen
The Old Testament Lesson
The Old Testament Lesson for today is taken from Ezekiel 1:28-3:3
Like the bow in a cloud on a rainy day, such was the appearance of the splendor all around. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD. When I saw it, I fell on my face, and I heard the voice of someone speaking. He said to me, O mortal, eat what is offered to you; eat this scroll, and go, speak to the house of Israel. So I opened my mouth, and he gave me the scroll to eat. He said to me, Mortal, eat this scroll that I give you and fill your stomach with it. Then I ate it; and in my mouth it was as sweet as honey.
The Epistle Lesson
The Epistle Lesson for today is taken from Hebrews 4:14-5:6
Since, then, we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast to our confession. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who in every respect has been tested as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore approach the throne of grace with boldness, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need. Every high priest chosen from among mortals is put in charge of things pertaining to God on their behalf, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins. He is able to deal gently with the ignorant and wayward, since he himself is subject to weakness; and because of this he must offer sacrifice for his own sins as well as for those of the people. And one does not presume to take this honor, but takes it only when called by God, just as Aaron was. So also Christ did not glorify himself in becoming a high priest, but was appointed by the one who said to him, "You are my Son, today I have begotten you" as he says also in another place, "You are a priest forever, according to the order of Melchizedek."
The Holy Gospel Lesson
The Holy Gospel is written in Luke 9:28-36
Now about eight days after these sayings Jesus took with him Peter and John and James, and went up on the mountain to pray. And while he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became dazzling white. Suddenly they saw two men, Moses and Elijah, talking to him. They appeared in glory and were speaking of his departure, which he was about to accomplish at Jerusalem. Now Peter and his companions were weighed down with sleep; but since they had stayed awake, they saw his glory and the two men who stood with him. Just as they were leaving him, Peter said to Jesus, "Master, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah"-- not knowing what he said. While he was saying this, a cloud came and overshadowed them; and they were terrified as they entered the cloud. Then from the cloud came a voice that said, "This is my Son, my Chosen; listen to him!" When the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. And they kept silent and in those days told no one any of the things they had seen.
Psalm 85 Benedixisti, Domine
1 You have been gracious to your land, O LORD, you have restored the good fortune of Jacob.
2 You have forgiven the iniquity of your people and blotted out all their sins.
3 You have withdrawn all your fury and turned yourself from your wrathful indignation.
4 Restore us then, O God our Savior; let your anger depart from us.
5 Will you be displeased with us for ever? will you prolong your anger from age to age?
6 Will you not give us life again, that your people may rejoice in you?
7 Show us your mercy, O LORD, and grant us your salvation.
8 I will listen to what the LORD God is saying, for he is speaking peace to his faithful people and to those who turn their hearts to him.
9 Truly, his salvation is very near to those who fear him, that his glory may dwell in our land.
10 Mercy and truth have met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.
11 Truth shall spring up from the earth, and righteousness shall look down from heaven.
12 The LORD will indeed grant prosperity, and our land will yield its increase.
13 Righteousness shall go before him, and peace shall be a pathway for his feet.
Psalm 86 Inclina, Domine
1 Bow down your ear, O LORD, and answer me, for I am poor and in misery.
2 Keep watch over my life, for I am faithful; save your servant who puts his trust in you.
3 Be merciful to me, O LORD, for you are my God; I call upon you all the day long.
4 Gladden the soul of your servant, for to you, O LORD, I lift up my soul.
5 For you, O LORD, are good and forgiving, and great is your love toward all who call upon you.
6 Give ear, O LORD, to my prayer, and attend to the voice of my supplications.
7 In the time of my trouble I will call upon you, for you will answer me.
8 Among the gods there is none like you, O LORD, nor anything like your works.
9 All the nations you have made will come and worship you, O LORD, and glorify your Name.
10 For you are great; you do wondrous things; and you alone are God.
11 Teach me your way, O LORD, and I will walk in your truth; knit my heart to you that I may fear your Name.
12 I will thank you, O LORD my God, with all my heart, and glorify your Name for evermore.
13 For great is your love toward me; you have delivered me from the nethermost Pit.
14 The arrogant rise up against me, O God, and a band of violent men seeks my life; they have not set you before their eyes.
15 But you, O LORD, are gracious and full of compassion, slow to anger, and full of kindness and truth.
16 Turn to me and have mercy upon me; give your strength to your servant; and save the child of your handmaid.
17 Show me a sign of your favor, so that those who hate me may see it and be ashamed; because you, O LORD, have helped me and comforted me.
Psalm 91 Qui habitat
1 He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High, abides under the shadow of the Almighty.
2 He shall say to the LORD, "You are my refuge and my stronghold, my God in whom I put my trust."
3 He shall deliver you from the snare of the hunter and from the deadly pestilence.
4 He shall cover you with his pinions, and you shall find refuge under his wings; his faithfulness shall be a shield and buckler.
5 You shall not be afraid of any terror by night, nor of the arrow that flies by day;
6 Of the plague that stalks in the darkness, nor of the sickness that lays waste at mid-day.
7 A thousand shall fall at your side and ten thousand at your right hand, but it shall not come near you.
8 Your eyes have only to behold to see the reward of the wicked.
9 Because you have made the LORD your refuge, and the Most High your habitation,
10 There shall no evil happen to you, neither shall any plague come near your dwelling.
11 For he shall give his angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways.
12 They shall bear you in their hands, lest you dash your foot against a stone.
13 You shall tread upon the lion and the adder; you shall trample the young lion and the serpent under your feet.
14 Because he is bound to me in love, therefore will I deliver him; I will protect him, because he knows my Name.
15 He shall call upon me, and I will answer him; I am with him in trouble; I will rescue him and bring him to honor.
16 With long life will I satisfy him, and show him my salvation.
Psalm 92 Bonum est confiteri
1 It is a good thing to give thanks to the LORD, and to sing praises to your Name, O Most High;
2 To tell of your loving-kindness early in the morning and of your faithfulness in the night season;
3 On the psaltery, and on the lyre, and to the melody of the harp.
4 For you have made me glad by your acts, O LORD; and I shout for joy because of the works of your hands.
5 LORD, how great are your works! your thoughts are very deep.
6 The dullard does not know, nor does the fool understand, that though the wicked grow like weeds, and all the workers of iniquity flourish,
7 They flourish only to be destroyed for ever; but you, O LORD, are exalted for evermore.
8 For lo, your enemies, O LORD, lo, your enemies shall perish, and all the workers of iniquity shall be scattered.
9 But my horn you have exalted like the horns of wild bulls; I am anointed with fresh oil.
10 My eyes also gloat over my enemies, and my ears rejoice to hear the doom of the wicked who rise up against me.
11 The righteous shall flourish like a palm tree, and shall spread abroad like a cedar of Lebanon.
12 Those who are planted in the house of the LORD shall flourish in the courts of our God;
13 They shall still bear fruit in old age; they shall be green and succulent;
14 That they may show how upright the LORD is, my Rock, in whom there is no fault.
The Nicene Creed
- We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen.
- We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one Being with the Father. Through him all things were made. For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven: by the power of the Holy Spirit he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary, and was made man. For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried. On the third day he rose again in accordance with the Scriptures; he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end.
- We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son. With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified. He has spoken through the Prophets. We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church. We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins. We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen
Now all glory to you, mighty God, who is able to keep me from falling away and will bring me with great joy into your glorious presence without a single fault. All glory to you who alone are God, our Savior through Jesus Christ our Lord. All glory, majesty, power, and authority are yours before all time, and in the present, and beyond all time. Amen
Prayer of Thanks
O Thou whose bounty fills my cup with every blessing meet! I give Thee thanks for every drop, the bitter and the sweet.
I praise Thee for the desert road, and for the riverside; for all Thy goodness hath bestowed, and all Thy grace denied.
I thank Thee for both smile and frown, and for the gain and loss; I praise Thee for the future crown and for the present cross.
I thank Thee for both wings of love which stirred my worldly nest; and for the stormy clouds which drove me, trembling, to Thy breast.
I bless Thee for the glad increase, and for the waning joy; and for this strange, this settled peace which nothing can destroy.
A Prayer for Mission
Lord Jesus Christ, you stretched out your arms of love on the hard wood of the cross that everyone might come within the reach of your saving embrace: So clothe us in your Spirit that we, reaching forth our hands in love, may bring those who do not know you to the knowledge and love of you; for the honor of your Name. Amen
Alleluia! Christ has risen.
Christ has risen indeed. Alleluia!
Glory to God whose power, working in us, can do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine: Glory to him from generation to generation in the Church, and in Christ Jesus for ever and ever. Amen
New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. The New Revised Standard Version Bible may be quoted and/or reprinted up to and inclusive of five hundred (500) verses without express written permission of the publisher, provided the verses quoted do not amount to a complete book of the Bible or account for fifty percent (50%) of the total work in which they are quoted.