OREMUS: 8 January 2006

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Sat Jan 7 17:00:00 GMT 2006

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OREMUS for Sunday, January 8, 2005
The First Sunday after Epiphany

O Lord, open our lips.
And our mouth shall proclaim your praise.

Blessed are you, mighty God, Creator of heaven and earth!
When your voice first thundered over the seas
your brooding Spirit brought forth the earth from the void
and breathed life into all your creatures.
You called your people to follow your ways,
and sent your servant, John the Baptist,
to proclaiming a baptism of repentance
for the forgiveness of sins.
He pointed to the one who was to come,
your beloved child, Jesus the Christ.
When he was baptized in the fearful waters of death,
you raised him to life and tore open the heavens
so that all might be baptized with your Holy Spirit
and enter into your presence as your children.
For these and all your mercies, we praise you:
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
Blessed be God for ever!

An opening canticle may be sung. 


Psalm 2

Why are the nations in an uproar?*
 Why do the peoples mutter empty threats?
Why do the kings of the earth rise up in revolt
   and the princes plot together,*
 against the Lord and against his anointed?
'Let us break their yoke', they say;*
 'let us cast off their bonds from us.'
He whose throne is in heaven is laughing;*
 the Lord has them in derision.
Then he speaks to them in his wrath*
 and his rage fills them with terror.
'I myself have set my king*
 upon my holy hill of Zion.'
Let me announce the decree of the Lord:*
 he said to me, 'You are my Son;
   this day have I begotten you.
'Ask of me and I will give you the nations for
   your inheritance*
 and the ends of the earth for your possession.
'You shall crush them with an iron rod*
 and shatter them like a piece of pottery.'
And now, you kings, be wise;*
 be warned, you rulers of the earth.
Submit to the Lord with fear,*
 and with trembling bow before him;
Lest he be angry and you perish;*
 for his wrath is quickly kindled.
Happy are they all*
 who take refuge in him!

Psalm 92

It is a good thing to give thanks to the Lord,*
 and to sing praises to your name, O Most High;
To tell of your loving-kindness early in the morning*
 and of your faithfulness in the night season;
On the psaltery and on the lyre*
 and to the melody of the harp.
For you have made me glad by your acts, O Lord;*
 and I shout for joy because of the works of your hands.
Lord, how great are your works!*
 your thoughts are very deep.
The dullard does not know,
   nor does the fool understand,*
 that though the wicked grow like weeds,
   and all the workers of iniquity flourish,
They flourish only to be destroyed for ever;*
 but you, O Lord, are exalted for evermore.
For lo, your enemies, O Lord,
   lo, your enemies shall perish,*
 and all the workers of iniquity shall be scattered.
But my horn you have exalted
   like the horns of wild bulls;*
 I am anointed with fresh oil.
My eyes also gloat over my enemies,*
 and my ears rejoice to hear the doom of the wicked
   who rise up against me.
The righteous shall flourish like a palm tree,*
 and shall spread abroad like a cedar of Lebanon.
Those who are planted in the house of the Lord*
 shall flourish in the courts of our God;
They shall still bear fruit in old age;*
 they shall be green and succulent;
That they may show how upright the Lord is,*
 my rock, in whom there is no fault.

A Song of Christ's Appearing (1 Timothy 3:16; 6:15-16)
Christ Jesus was revealed in the flesh
and vindicated in the spirit.

He was seen by angels
and proclaimed among the nations.

Believed in throughout the world,
he was taken up in glory.

This will be made manifest at the proper time
by the blessed and only Sovereign,

Who alone has immortality,
and dwells in unapproachable light.

To the King of kings and Lord of lords
be honour and eternal dominion. Amen.

Psalm 117

Praise the Lord, all you nations;*
 laud him, all you peoples.
For his loving-kindness towards us is great,*
 and the faithfulness of the Lord endures for ever.

READING [John 1:19-34]:

This is the testimony given by John when the Jews sent
priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, 'Who are
you?' He confessed and did not deny it, but confessed, 'I
am not the Messiah.' And they asked him, 'What then? Are
you Elijah?' He said, 'I am not.' 'Are you the prophet?'
He answered, 'No.' Then they said to him, 'Who are you?
Let us have an answer for those who sent us. What do you
say about yourself?' He said,
'I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness,
"Make straight the way of the Lord" ',
as the prophet Isaiah said.

Now they had been sent from the Pharisees. They asked
him, 'Why then are you baptizing if you are neither the
Messiah, nor Elijah, nor the prophet?' John answered
them, 'I baptize with water. Among you stands one whom
you do not know, the one who is coming after me; I am not
worthy to untie the thong of his sandal.' This took place
in Bethany across the Jordan where John was baptizing.
The next day he saw Jesus coming towards him and
declared, 'Here is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin
of the world! This is he of whom I said, "After me comes
a man who ranks ahead of me because he was before me." I
myself did not know him; but I came baptizing with water
for this reason, that he might be revealed to Israel.'
And John testified, 'I saw the Spirit descending from
heaven like a dove, and it remained on him. I myself did
not know him, but the one who sent me to baptize with
water said to me, "He on whom you see the Spirit descend
and remain is the one who baptizes with the Holy Spirit."
And I myself have seen and have testified that this is
the Son of God.'

For another Biblical reading,
Ezekiel 47:1-12

Words: attributed to St. Patrick (372-466);
trans. Cecil Frances Alexander (1818-1895), 1889
Tune: St. Patrick's Breastplate and Gartan
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I bind unto myself today
the strong Name of the Trinity,
by invocation of the same,
the Three in One, and One in Three.

I bind this day to me for ever,
by power of faith, Christ's Incarnation;
his baptism in Jordan river;
his death on cross for my salvation;
his bursting from the spicŠd tomb;
his riding up the heavenly way;
his coming at the day of doom:
I bind unto myself today.

I bind unto myself the power
of the great love of cherubim;
the sweet "Well done" in judgment hour;
the service of the seraphim;
confessors' faith, apostles' word,
the patriarchs' prayers, the prophets' scrolls;
all good deeds done unto the Lord,
and purity of virgin souls.

I bind unto myself today
the virtues of the starlit heaven
the glorious sun's life-giving ray,
the whiteness of the moon at even,
the flashing of the lightning free,
the whirling wind's tempestuous shocks,
the stable earth, the deep salt sea,
around the old eternal rocks.

I bind unto myself today
the power of God to hold and lead,
his eye to watch, his might to stay,
his ear to hearken, to my need;
the wisdom of my God to teach,
his hand to guide, his shield to ward;
the word of God to give me speech,
his heavenly host to be my guard.

Christ be with me,
Christ within me,
Christ behind me,
Christ before me,
Christ beside me,
Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort
and restore me.
Christ beneath me,
Christ above me,
Christ in quiet,
Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of
all that love me,
Christ in mouth of
friend and stranger.

I bind unto myself today
the strong Name of the Trinity,
by invocation of the same,
the Three in One, and One in Three.
Of whom all nature hath creation,
eternal Father, Spirit, Word:
praise to the Lord of my salvation,
salvation is of Christ the Lord.

The Benedictus (Morning),
Magnificat (Evening), or 
Nunc dimittis (Night) may

God of truth,
you are faithful to the covenant you have made with us;
look in mercy on your people.
Cleanse us, Lord, from all our sins:
Wash us, and we shall be whiter than snow.

We have broken the pledges of our baptism,
and failed to be your disciples. 
Cleanse us, Lord, from all our sins:
Wash us, and we shall be whiter than snow.

Though we are saved by Christ
and dead to sin through the deep waters of death,
we have not witnessed to his grace 
by our manner of life. 
Cleanse us, Lord, from all our sins:
Wash us, and we shall be whiter than snow.

We have shown indifference to those in need
and have been afraid to stand up 
for justice and truth. 
Cleanse us, Lord, from all our sins:
Wash us, and we shall be whiter than snow. 

We have been slow to forgive,
and have failed to remember
your repeated forgiveness of our sins.
Cleanse us, Lord, from all our sins:
Wash us, and we shall be whiter than snow.

Today we rejoice and give thanks
because your Son humbled himself
to be baptized in the Jordan.
Through the waters you have given us
the mystery of baptism
for the remission of our sins. 
Cleanse us, Lord, from all our sins:
Wash us, and we shall be whiter than snow.

Through water and Spirit
you give us new life 
as the people of God,
and pour out upon us 
the gifts of your new covenant.
Cleanse us, Lord, from all our sins:
Wash us, and we shall be whiter than snow.

O God, whose kingdom is not of this world:
your Son has shattered our yoke of sin
and loosened the fetters of all that bound us in tyranny:
acknowledge the servants who bow before you
and bless the inheritance of your Son's redeeming;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Water may be sprinkled over one's self or one may make the sign of the cross with it,

Remember your baptism into Christ Jesus.
Thanks be to God.


I remember my baptism into Christ Jesus.
Thanks be to God.

God has made us one in Christ.
He has set his seal upon us,
and as a pledge of what is to come
has given the Spirit to dwell in our hearts. Amen.

Eternal God, 
at the baptism of Jesus 
in the River Jordan 
you proclaimed him your beloved Son 
and anointed him with the Holy Spirit: 
Grant that all who are baptized into his Name 
may keep the covenant they have made, 
and boldly confess him as Lord and Savior; 
who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, 
one God, in glory everlasting. Amen.

Rejoicing in the presence of God here among us,
let us pray in faith and trust:

- The Lord's Prayer

O God, whose voice moves over the waters,
immerse us in your grace,
make us with your image,
and raise us to live our baptismal vows
empowered by the Holy Spirit
and the example of Christ our Lord. Amen.

The psalms are from _Celebrating Common Prayer_ (Mowbray),
(c) The Society of Saint Francis 1992, which is used with permission.

The canticle is from _Common Worship: Daily Prayer, Preliminary
Edition_, copyright (c) The Archbishops' Council, 2002.

The biblical passage is from The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized
Edition), copyright (c) 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education
of  the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA. Used by
permission. All rights reserved.

The opening prayer of thanksgiving is altered by Stephen Benner from a prayer
(c) 2002, Nathan Nettleton at http://www.laughingbird.net/.

The intercession is from _The Promise of His Glory_ (Mowbray),
(c) The Central Board of Finance  of the Church of England 1990, 1991,
which is used with permission.

The collect is from _Book of Common Worship_, (c) 1993
Westminster / John Knox Press. 

The closing sentence is from a prayer reprinted from _Revised Common
Lectionary Prayers_, copyright (c) 2002 Consultation on Common

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