|Jesus Cleanses the Temple|
I was glad when they said to me, "Let us go to the house of the Lord."
~ Psalm 122:1
For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food,
For love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.
I thank thee.
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 17:24-18:8
Then David came to Mahanaim, while Absalom crossed the Jordan with all the men of Israel. Now Absalom had set Amasa over the army in the place of Joab. Amasa was the son of a man named Ithra the Ishmaelite, who had married Abigal daughter of Nahash, sister of Zeruiah, Joab's mother. The Israelites and Absalom encamped in the land of Gilead. When David came to Mahanaim, Shobi son of Nahash from Rabbah of the Ammonites, and Machir son of Ammiel from Lo-debar, and Barzillai the Gileadite from Rogelim, brought beds, basins, and earthen vessels, wheat, barley, meal, parched grain, beans and lentils, honey and curds, sheep, and cheese from the herd, for David and the people with him to eat; for they said, "The troops are hungry and weary and thirsty in the wilderness."
[The Defeat and Death of Absalom]
Then David mustered the men who were with him, and set over them commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds. And David divided the army into three groups: one third under the command of Joab, one third under the command of Abishai son of Zeruiah, Joab's brother, and one third under the command of Ittai the Gittite. The king said to the men, "I myself will also go out with you." But the men said, "You shall not go out. For if we flee, they will not care about us. If half of us die, they will not care about us. But you are worth ten thousand of us; therefore it is better that you send us help from the city." The king said to them, "Whatever seems best to you I will do." So the king stood at the side of the gate, while all the army marched out by hundreds and by thousands. The king ordered Joab and Abishai and Ittai, saying, "Deal gently for my sake with the young man Absalom." And all the people heard when the king gave orders to all the commanders concerning Absalom. So the army went out into the field against Israel; and the battle was fought in the forest of Ephraim. The men of Israel were defeated there by the servants of David, and the slaughter there was great on that day, twenty thousand men. The battle spread over the face of all the country; and the forest claimed more victims that day than the sword.
The Second Reading is taken from Acts 22:30-23:11
[Paul before the Council]
Since he wanted to find out what Paul was being accused of by the Jews, the next day he released him and ordered the chief priests and the entire council to meet. He brought Paul down and had him stand before them. While Paul was looking intently at the council he said, "Brothers, up to this day I have lived my life with a clear conscience before God." Then the high priest Ananias ordered those standing near him to strike him on the mouth. At this Paul said to him, "God will strike you, you whitewashed wall! Are you sitting there to judge me according to the law, and yet in violation of the law you order me to be struck?" Those standing nearby said, "Do you dare to insult God's high priest?" And Paul said, "I did not realize, brothers, that he was high priest; for it is written, 'You shall not speak evil of a leader of your people.'" When Paul noticed that some were Sadducees and others were Pharisees, he called out in the council, "Brothers, I am a Pharisee, a son of Pharisees. I am on trial concerning the hope of the resurrection of the dead." When he said this, a dissension began between the Pharisees and the Sadducees, and the assembly was divided. (The Sadducees say that there is no resurrection, or angel, or spirit; but the Pharisees acknowledge all three.) Then a great clamor arose, and certain scribes of the Pharisees' group stood up and contended, "We find nothing wrong with this man. What if a spirit or an angel has spoken to him?" When the dissension became violent, the tribune, fearing that they would tear Paul to pieces, ordered the soldiers to go down, take him by force, and bring him into the barracks. That night the Lord stood near him and said, "Keep up your courage! For just as you have testified for me in Jerusalem, so you must bear witness also in Rome."
The Holy Gospel is written in Mark 11:12-26
[Jesus Curses the Fig Tree]
On the following day, when they came from Bethany, he was hungry. Seeing in the distance a fig tree in leaf, he went to see whether perhaps he would find anything on it. When he came to it, he found nothing but leaves, for it was not the season for figs. He said to it, "May no one ever eat fruit from you again." And his disciples heard it.
[Jesus Cleanses the Temple]
Then they came to Jerusalem. And he entered the temple and began to drive out those who were selling and those who were buying in the temple, and he overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who sold doves; and he would not allow anyone to carry anything through the temple. He was teaching and saying, "Is it not written, 'My house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations'? But you have made it a den of robbers." And when the chief priests and the scribes heard it, they kept looking for a way to kill him; for they were afraid of him, because the whole crowd was spellbound by his teaching. And when evening came, Jesus and his disciples went out of the city.
[The Lesson from the Withered Fig Tree]
In the morning as they passed by, they saw the fig tree withered away to its roots. Then Peter remembered and said to him, "Rabbi, look! The fig tree that you cursed has withered." Jesus answered them, "Have faith in God. Truly I tell you, if you say to this mountain, 'Be taken up and thrown into the sea,' and if you do not doubt in your heart, but believe that what you say will come to pass, it will be done for you. So I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. "Whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone; so that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses."
Psalm 106:1-18 Confitemini Domino
1 Hallelujah! Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good, for his mercy endures for ever.
2 Who can declare the mighty acts of the LORD or show forth all his praise?
3 Happy are those who act with justice and always do what is right!
4 Remember me, O LORD, with the favor you have for your people, and visit me with your saving help;
5 That I may see the prosperity of your elect and be glad with the gladness of your people, that I may glory with your inheritance.
6 We have sinned as our forebears did; we have done wrong and dealt wickedly.
7 In Egypt they did not consider your marvelous works, nor remember the abundance of your love; they defied the Most High at the Red Sea.
8 But he saved them for his Name's sake, to make his power known.
9 He rebuked the Red Sea, and it dried up, and he led them through the deep as through a desert.
10 He saved them from the hand of those who hated them and redeemed them from the hand of the enemy.
11 The waters covered their oppressors; not one of them was left.
12 Then they believed his words and sang him songs of praise.
13 But they soon forgot his deeds and did not wait for his counsel.
14 A craving seized them in the wilderness, and they put God to the test in the desert.
15 He gave them what they asked, but sent leanness into their soul.
16 They envied Moses in the camp, and Aaron, the holy one of the LORD.
17 The earth opened and swallowed Dathan and covered the company of Abiram.
18 Fire blazed up against their company, and flames devoured the wicked.
Psalm 106:19-48 Et fecerunt vitulum
19 Israel made a bull-calf at Horeb and worshiped a molten image;
20 And so they exchanged their Glory for the image of an ox that feeds on grass.
21 They forgot God their Savior, who had done great things in Egypt,
22 Wonderful deeds in the land of Ham, and fearful things at the Red Sea.
23 So he would have destroyed them, had not Moses his chosen stood before him in the breach, to turn away his wrath from consuming them.
24 They refused the pleasant land and would not believe his promise.
25 They grumbled in their tents and would not listen to the voice of the LORD.
26 So he lifted his hand against them, to overthrow them in the wilderness,
27 To cast out their seed among the nations, and to scatter them throughout the lands.
28 They joined themselves to Baal-Peor and ate sacrifices offered to the dead.
29 They provoked him to anger with their actions, and a plague broke out among them.
30 Then Phinehas stood up and interceded, and the plague came to an end.
31 This was reckoned to him as righteousness throughout all generations for ever.
32 Again they provoked his anger at the waters of Meribah, so that he punished Moses because of them;
33 For they so embittered his spirit that he spoke rash words with his lips.
34 They did not destroy the peoples as the LORD had commanded them.
35 They intermingled with the heathen and learned their pagan ways,
36 So that they worshiped their idols, which became a snare to them.
37 They sacrificed their sons and their daughters to evil spirits.
38 They shed innocent blood, the blood of their sons and daughters, which they offered to the idols of Canaan, and the land was defiled with blood.
39 Thus they were polluted by their actions and went whoring in their evil deeds.
40 Therefore the wrath of the LORD was kindled against his people and he abhorred his inheritance.
41 He gave them over to the hand of the heathen, and those who hated them ruled over them.
42 Their enemies oppressed them, and they were humbled under their hand.
43 Many a time did he deliver them, but they rebelled through their own devices, and were brought down in their iniquity.
44 Nevertheless, he saw their distress, when he heard their lamentation.
45 He remembered his covenant with them and relented in accordance with his great mercy.
46 He caused them to be pitied by those who held them captive.
47 Save us, O LORD our God, and gather us from among the nations, that we may give thanks to your holy Name and glory in your praise.
48 Blessed be the LORD, the God of Israel, from everlasting to everlasting; and let all the people say, "Amen!" Hallelujah!
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 mighty God, I was born a weak, defenseless child, but Your angel spread his wings over my cradle to defend me. From birth until now Your love has illumined my path, and has wondrously guided me towards the light of eternity; from birth until now the generous gifts of Your providence have been marvelously showered upon me. I give You thanks, with all who have come to know You, who call upon Your name. Through Christ I pray, Amen.
Heavenly Lord, let me always remember that the Holy Spirit who guides and protects me is the same Spirit who guides and protects all Christians. We are one in your Spirit, and the differences that divide us are the work of Satan. He is powerful in the world, Lord; and only you are strong enough to protect us against him.
Let me always seek unity. Let me call on your Spirit for power when I feel separated from my brother or sister, the power of reconciliation, that we might find the unity and harmony in which you have commanded us to live. Let me never think that the Spirit conforms to my individual personality; but let me seek to conform myself to the one true Spirit of God. In Christ's name, I pray. Amen.
A Prayer for Mission
O God, you have made of one blood all the peoples of the earth, and sent your blessed Son to preach peace to those who are far off and to those who are near: Grant that people everywhere may seek after you and find you; bring the nations into your fold; pour out your Spirit upon all flesh; and hasten the coming of your kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Alleluia! Christ has risen.
Christ has risen indeed. Alleluia!
Christ has risen indeed. Alleluia!
Almighty God, by your Holy Spirit you have made me one with your saints in heaven and on earth. Grant that in my earthly pilgrimage I may always be supported by this fellowship of love and prayer, and know myself to be surrounded by their witness to your power and mercy. I ask this for the sake of Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns 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.