Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my strength and my redeemer. Psalm 19:14
Oh God the King eternal, who divides the day from the darkness, and has turned the shadow of death into the light of morning; I pray that this day you will incline my heart to keep your commandments, driving temptation from my mind. Guide my feet into the way of peace; that having done your will with cheerfulness while it was day, I may, when the night comes, rejoice in giving you thanks for a day lived in your presence; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Confession and Forgiveness
Eternal God, in whom we live and move and have our being, whose face is hidden from us by our sins, and whose mercy we forget in the blindness of our hearts: cleanse us from all our offenses, and deliver us from proud thoughts and vain desires, that with reverent and humble hearts we may draw near to you, confessing our faults, confiding in your grace, and finding in you our refuge and strength; through Jesus Christ your Son.
~ Book of Common Worship
The First Reading is taken from 2 Samuel 7:18-29
[David’s Prayer] Then King David went in and sat before the LORD, and said, "Who am I, O Lord GOD, and what is my house, that you have brought me thus far? And yet this was a small thing in your eyes, O Lord GOD; you have spoken also of your servant's house for a great while to come. May this be instruction for the people, O Lord GOD! And what more can David say to you? For you know your servant, O Lord GOD! Because of your promise, and according to your own heart, you have wrought all this greatness, so that your servant may know it. Therefore you are great, O LORD God; for there is no one like you, and there is no God besides you, according to all that we have heard with our ears. Who is like your people, like Israel? Is there another nation on earth whose God went to redeem it as a people, and to make a name for himself, doing great and awesome things for them, by driving out before his people nations and their gods? And you established your people Israel for yourself to be your people forever; and you, O LORD, became their God. And now, O LORD God, as for the word that you have spoken concerning your servant and concerning his house, confirm it forever; do as you have promised. Thus your name will be magnified forever in the saying, 'The LORD of hosts is God over Israel' and the house of your servant David will be established before you. For you, O LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, have made this revelation to your servant, saying, 'I will build you a house' therefore your servant has found courage to pray this prayer to you. And now, O Lord GOD, you are God, and your words are true, and you have promised this good thing to your servant; now therefore may it please you to bless the house of your servant, so that it may continue forever before you; for you, O Lord GOD, have spoken, and with your blessing shall the house of your servant be blessed forever."
The Second Reading is taken from Acts 18:12-28
But when Gallio was proconsul of Achaia, the Jews made a united attack on Paul and brought him before the tribunal. They said, "This man is persuading people to worship God in ways that are contrary to the law." Just as Paul was about to speak, Gallio said to the Jews, "If it were a matter of crime or serious villainy, I would be justified in accepting the complaint of you Jews; but since it is a matter of questions about words and names and your own law, see to it yourselves; I do not wish to be a judge of these matters." And he dismissed them from the tribunal. Then all of them seized Sosthenes, the official of the synagogue, and beat him in front of the tribunal. But Gallio paid no attention to any of these things.
[Paul’s Return to Antioch] After staying there for a considerable time, Paul said farewell to the believers and sailed for Syria, accompanied by Priscilla and Aquila. At Cenchreae he had his hair cut, for he was under a vow. When they reached Ephesus, he left them there, but first he himself went into the synagogue and had a discussion with the Jews. When they asked him to stay longer, he declined; but on taking leave of them, he said, "I will return to you, if God wills." Then he set sail from Ephesus. When he had landed at Caesarea, he went up to Jerusalem and greeted the church, and then went down to Antioch. After spending some time there he departed and went from place to place through the region of Galatia and Phrygia, strengthening all the disciples.
[Ministry of Apollos] Now there came to Ephesus a Jew named Apollos, a native of Alexandria. He was an eloquent man, well-versed in the scriptures. He had been instructed in the Way of the Lord; and he spoke with burning enthusiasm and taught accurately the things concerning Jesus, though he knew only the baptism of John. He began to speak boldly in the synagogue; but when Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him aside and explained the Way of God to him more accurately. And when he wished to cross over to Achaia, the believers encouraged him and wrote to the disciples to welcome him. On his arrival he greatly helped those who through grace had become believers, for he powerfully refuted the Jews in public, showing by the scriptures that the Messiah is Jesus.
The Holy Gospel is written in Mark 8:22-33
[Jesus Cures a Blind Man at Bethsaida] They came to Bethsaida. Some people brought a blind man to him and begged him to touch him. He took the blind man by the hand and led him out of the village; and when he had put saliva on his eyes and laid his hands on him, he asked him, "Can you see anything?" And the man looked up and said, "I can see people, but they look like trees, walking." Then Jesus laid his hands on his eyes again; and he looked intently and his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly. Then he sent him away to his home, saying, "Do not even go into the village.
[Peter’s Declaration about Jesus] Jesus went on with his disciples to the villages of Caesarea Philippi; and on the way he asked his disciples, "Who do people say that I am?" And they answered him, "John the Baptist; and others, Elijah; and still others, one of the prophets." He asked them, "But who do you say that I am?" Peter answered him, "You are the Messiah." And he sternly ordered them not to tell anyone about him.
[Jesus Foretells His Death and Resurrection] Then he began to teach them that the Son of Man must undergo great suffering, and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. He said all this quite openly. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. But turning and looking at his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, "Get behind me, Satan! For you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things."
Psalm 78:1-39 Attendite, popule
1 Hear my teaching, O my people; incline your ears to the words of my mouth.
2 I will open my mouth in a parable; I will declare the mysteries of ancient times.
3 That which we have heard and known, and what our forefathers have told us, we will not hide from their children.
4 We will recount to generations to come the praiseworthy deeds and the power of the LORD, and the wonderful works he has done.
5 He gave his decrees to Jacob and established a law for Israel, which he commanded them to teach their children;
6 That the generations to come might know, and the children yet unborn; that they in their turn might tell it to their children;
7 So that they might put their trust in God, and not forget the deeds of God, but keep his commandments;
8 And not be like their forefathers, a stubborn and rebellious generation, a generation whose heart was not steadfast, and whose spirit was not faithful to God.
9 The people of Ephraim, armed with the bow, turned back in the day of battle;
10 They did not keep the covenant of God, and refused to walk in his law;
11 They forgot what he had done, and the wonders he had shown them.
12 He worked marvels in the sight of their forefathers, in the land of Egypt, in the field of Zoan.
13 He split open the sea and let them pass through; he made the waters stand up like walls.
14 He led them with a cloud by day, and all the night through with a glow of fire.
15 He split the hard rocks in the wilderness and gave them drink as from the great deep.
16 He brought streams out of the cliff, and the waters gushed out like rivers.
17 But they went on sinning against him, rebelling in the desert against the Most High.
18 They tested God in their hearts, demanding food for their craving.
19 They railed against God and said, "Can God set a table in the wilderness?
20 True, he struck the rock, the waters gushed out, and the gullies overflowed; but is he able to give bread or to provide meat for his people?"
21 When the LORD heard this, he was full of wrath; a fire was kindled against Jacob, and his anger mounted against Israel;
22 For they had no faith in God, nor did they put their trust in his saving power.
23 So he commanded the clouds above and opened the doors of heaven.
24 He rained down manna upon them to eat and gave them grain from heaven.
25 So mortals ate the bread of angels; he provided for them food enough.
26 He caused the east wind to blow in the heavens and led out the south wind by his might.
27 He rained down flesh upon them like dust and wingéd birds like the sand of the sea.
28 He let it fall in the midst of their camp and round about their dwellings.
29 So they ate and were well filled, for he gave them what they craved.
30 But they did not stop their craving, though the food was still in their mouths.
31 So God's anger mounted against them; he slew their strongest men and laid low the youth of Israel.
32 In spite of all this, they went on sinning and had no faith in his wonderful works.
33 So he brought their days to an end like a breath and their years in sudden terror.
34 Whenever he slew them, they would seek him, and repent, and diligently search for God.
35 They would remember that God was their rock, and the Most High God their redeemer.
36 But they flattered him with their mouths and lied to him with their tongues.
37 Their heart was not steadfast toward him, and they were not faithful to his covenant.
38 But he was so merciful that he forgave their sins and did not destroy them; many times he held back his anger and did not permit his wrath to be roused.
39 For he remembered that they were but flesh, a breath that goes forth and does not return.
Psalm 78:40-72 Quoties exacerbaverunt
40 How often the people disobeyed him in the wilderness and offended him in the desert!
41 Again and again they tempted God and provoked the Holy One of Israel.
42 They did not remember his power in the day when he ransomed them from the enemy;
43 How he wrought his signs in Egypt and his omens in the field of Zoan.
44 He turned their rivers into blood, so that they could not drink of their streams.
45 He sent swarms of flies among them, which ate them up, and frogs, which destroyed them.
46 He gave their crops to the caterpillar, the fruit of their toil to the locust.
47 He killed their vines with hail and their sycamores with frost.
48 He delivered their cattle to hailstones and their livestock to hot thunderbolts.
49 He poured out upon them his blazing anger: fury, indignation, and distress, a troop of destroying angels.
50 He gave full rein to his anger; he did not spare their souls from death; but delivered their lives to the plague.
51 He struck down all the firstborn of Egypt, the flower of manhood in the dwellings of Ham.
52 He led out his people like sheep and guided them in the wilderness like a flock.
53 He led them to safety, and they were not afraid; but the sea overwhelmed their enemies.
54 He brought them to his holy land, the mountain his right hand had won.
55 He drove out the Canaanites before them and apportioned an inheritance to them by lot; he made the tribes of Israel to dwell in their tents.
56 But they tested the Most High God, and defied him, and did not keep his commandments.
57 They turned away and were disloyal like their fathers; they were undependable like a warped bow.
58 They grieved him with their hill-altars they provoked his displeasure with their idols.
59 When God heard this, he was angry and utterly rejected Israel.
60 He forsook the shrine at Shiloh, the tabernacle where he had lived among his people.
61 He delivered the ark into captivity, his glory into the adversary's hand.
62 He gave his people to the sword and was angered against his inheritance.
63 The fire consumed their young men; there were no wedding songs for their maidens.
64 Their priests fell by the sword, and their widows made no lamentation.
65 Then the LORD woke as though from sleep, like a warrior refreshed with wine.
66 He struck his enemies on the backside and put them to perpetual shame.
67 He rejected the tent of Joseph and did not choose the tribe of Ephraim;
68 He chose instead the tribe of Judah and Mount Zion, which he loved.
69 He built his sanctuary like the heights of heaven, like the earth which he founded for ever.
70 He chose David his servant, and took him away from the sheepfolds.
71 He brought him from following the ewes, to be a shepherd over Jacob his people and over Israel his inheritance.
72 So he shepherded them with a faithful and true heart and guided them with the skillfulness of his hands.
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.
Prayer of the Day
O God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, our only Saviour, the Prince of Peace; Give us grace to take to heart the great dangers we are in by our unhappy divisions. Take away all hatred and prejudice, and whatever else may hinder us from godly union and concord: that as there is but one Body and one Spirit, and one hope of our calling, one Lord, one Faith, one Baptism, one God and Father of us all, so we may be all of one heart and of one soul, united in one holy bond of truth and peace, of faith and charity, and may with one mind and one mouth glorify you; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
A Prayer to Receive God
God, of your goodness give me yourself for you are sufficient for me. I cannot properly ask anything less, to be worthy of you. If I were to ask less, I should always be in want. In you alone do I have all. Amen.
~ Julian of Norwich, 1392
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.
Keep Your Lamp Trimmed
Ashley Cleveland & Kenny Greenberg
Ashley Cleveland & Kenny Greenberg
Alleluia! Christ has risen.
Christ has risen indeed. Alleluia!
Christ has risen indeed. Alleluia!
Lord, pour your love into my heart, that I may love you above all things, and my neighbors as myself. Through Christ our Lord. 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.