OREMUS: 28 November 2007

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Tue Nov 27 17:35:34 GMT 2007

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OREMUS for Wednesday, November 28, 2007 

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

Blessed are you, God our Father,
for with the oil of gladness
you have anointed Christ the Lord, your only Son,
to be our great high priest and king of all creation.
As priest, he offered himself once for all upon the altar of the cross
and redeemed the human race by this perfect sacrifice of peace.
As king he claims dominion over all your creatures,
that he may bring before your infinite majesty
a kingdom of truth and life,
a kingdom of holiness and grace,
a kingdom of justice, love and peace.
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 139

Lord, you have searched me out and known me;*
 you know my sitting down and my rising up;
   you discern my thoughts from afar.
You trace my journeys and my resting-places*
 and are acquainted with all my ways.
Indeed, there is not a word on my lips,*
 but you, O Lord, know it altogether.
You press upon me behind and before*
 and lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;*
 it is so high that I cannot attain to it.
Where can I go then from your Spirit?*
 where can I flee from your presence?
If I climb up to heaven, you are there;*
 if I make the grave my bed, you are there also.
If I take the wings of the morning*
 and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
Even there your hand will lead me*
 and your right hand hold me fast.
If I say, 'Surely the darkness will cover me,*
 and the light around me turn to night',
Darkness is not dark to you;
   the night is as bright as the day;*
 darkness and light to you are both alike.
For you yourself created my inmost parts;*
 you knit me together in my mother's womb.
I will thank you because I am marvellously made;*
 your works are wonderful and I know it well.
My body was not hidden from you,*
 while I was being made in secret
   and woven in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes beheld my limbs, yet unfinished in the womb;
   all of them were written in your book;*
 they were fashioned day by day,
   when as yet there was none of them.
How deep I find your thoughts, O God!*
 how great is the sum of them!
If I were to count them,
   they would be more in number than the sand;*
 to count them all,
   my life span would need to be like yours.
Search me out, O God, and know my heart;*
 try me and know my restless thoughts.
Look well whether there be any wickedness in me*
 and lead me in the way that is everlasting.

A Song of the Righteous (Wisdom 3.1,2a,3b-8)

The souls of the righteous are in the hand of God  
and no torment will ever touch them. 
In the eyes of the foolish, they seem to have died;  
but they are at peace. 
For though, in the sight of others, they were punished,  
their hope is full of immortality. 
Having been disciplined a little, 
they will receive great good,  
because God tested them and found them worthy. 
Like gold in the furnace, God tried them  
and, like a sacrificial burnt offering, accepted them. 
In the time of their visitation, they will shine forth  
and will run like sparks through the stubble. 
They will govern nations and rule over peoples  
and God will reign over them for ever.

Psalm 147:13-end

Worship the Lord, O Jerusalem;*
 praise your God, O Zion;
For he has strengthened the bars of your gates;*
 he has blessed your children within you.
He has established peace on your borders;*
 he satisfies you with the finest wheat.
He sends out his command to the earth,*
 and his word runs very swiftly.
He gives snow like wool;*
 he scatters hoarfrost like ashes.
He scatters his hail like bread crumbs;*
 who can stand against his cold?
He sends forth his word and melts them;*
 he blows with his wind and the waters flow.
He declares his word to Jacob,*
 his statutes and his judgements to Israel.
He has not done so to any other nation;*
 to them he has not revealed his judgements.

FIRST READING [Daniel 5:1-6, 13-28]:

King Belshazzar made a great festival for a thousand of his lords, and he was drinking
wine in the presence of the thousand.
Under the influence of the wine, Belshazzar commanded that they bring in the vessels
of gold and silver that his father Nebuchadnezzar had taken out of the temple in
Jerusalem, so that the king and his lords, his wives, and his concubines might drink
from them. So they brought in the vessels of gold and silver that had been taken out of
the temple, the house of God in Jerusalem, and the king and his lords, his wives, and
his concubines drank from them. They drank the wine and praised the gods of gold
and silver, bronze, iron, wood, and stone.
Immediately the fingers of a human hand appeared and began writing on the plaster of
the wall of the royal palace, next to the lampstand. The king was watching the hand as
it wrote. Then the king's face turned pale, and his thoughts terrified him. His limbs
gave way, and his knees knocked together.

Then Daniel was brought in before the king. The king said to Daniel, 'So you are
Daniel, one of the exiles of Judah, whom my father the king brought from Judah? I
have heard of you that a spirit of the gods is in you, and that enlightenment,
understanding, and excellent wisdom are found in you. Now the wise men, the
enchanters, have been brought in before me to read this writing and tell me its
interpretation, but they were not able to give the interpretation of the matter. But I
have heard that you can give interpretations and solve problems. Now if you are able
to read the writing and tell me its interpretation, you shall be clothed in purple, have a
chain of gold around your neck, and rank third in the kingdom.'
Then Daniel answered in the presence of the king, 'Let your gifts be for yourself, or
give your rewards to someone else! Nevertheless, I will read the writing to the king
and let him know the interpretation. O king, the Most High God gave your father
Nebuchadnezzar kingship, greatness, glory, and majesty. And because of the greatness
that he gave him, all peoples, nations, and languages trembled and feared before him.
He killed those he wanted to kill, kept alive those he wanted to keep alive, honoured
those he wanted to honour, and degraded those he wanted to degrade. But when his
heart was lifted up and his spirit was hardened so that he acted proudly, he was
deposed from his kingly throne, and his glory was stripped from him. He was driven
from human society, and his mind was made like that of an animal. His dwelling was
with the wild asses, he was fed grass like oxen, and his body was bathed with the dew
of heaven, until he learned that the Most High God has sovereignty over the kingdom
of mortals, and sets over it whomsoever he will. And you, Belshazzar his son, have not
humbled your heart, even though you knew all this! You have exalted yourself against
the Lord of heaven! The vessels of his temple have been brought in before you, and
you and your lords, your wives and your concubines have been drinking wine from
them. You have praised the gods of silver and gold, of bronze, iron, wood, and stone,
which do not see or hear or know; but the God in whose power is your very breath,
and to whom belong all your ways, you have not honoured.
'So from his presence the hand was sent and this writing was inscribed. And this is the
writing that was inscribed: mene, mene, tekel, and parsin. This is the interpretation of
the matter: mene, God has numbered the days of your kingdom and brought it to an
end; tekel, you have been weighed on the scales and found wanting; peres, your
kingdom is divided and given to the Medes and Persians.' 

Words: Henry Williams Baker, 1861
Tune: Monkland

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Praise, O praise our God and King;
hymns of adoration sing;
for his mercies still endure
ever faithful, ever sure.

Praise him that he made the sun
day by day his course to run;
for his mercies still endure
ever faithful, ever sure;

and the silver moon by night,
shining with her gentle light;
for his mercies still endure
ever faithful, ever sure.

Praise him that he gave the rain
to mature the swelling grain;
for his mercies still endure
ever faithful, ever sure;

and hath bid the fruitful field
crops of precious increase yield;
for his mercies still endure
ever faithful, ever sure.

Praise him for our harvest-store,
he hath filled the garner-floor;
for his mercies still endure
ever faithful, ever sure.

And for richer food than this,
pledge of everlasting bliss;
for his mercies still endure
ever faithful, ever sure.

Glory to our bounteous King;
glory let creation sing;
glory to the Father, Son,
and blest Spirit, Three in One.

SECOND READING [Luke 21:10-19]:

Jesus said, 'Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; there will be
great earthquakes, and in various places famines and plagues; and there will be
dreadful portents and great signs from heaven.

'But before all this occurs, they will arrest you and persecute you; they will hand you
over to synagogues and prisons, and you will be brought before kings and governors
because of my name. This will give you an opportunity to testify. So make up your
minds not to prepare your defence in advance; for I will give you words and a wisdom
that none of your opponents will be able to withstand or contradict. You will be
betrayed even by parents and brothers, by relatives and friends; and they will put some
of you to death. You will be hated by all because of my name. But not a hair of your
head will perish. By your endurance you will gain your souls.'

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

United in the company of all the faithful 
and looking for the coming of the kingdom, 
let us offer our prayers to God, the source of all life and holiness.

Merciful Lord, strengthen all Christian people by your Holy Spirit 
that we may live as a royal priesthood 
and a holy nation to the praise of Jesus Christ our Saviour.
Lord, in your mercy.
Hear our prayer.

Empower us by the gift of your Holy and life-giving Spirit
that we may be transformed into the likeness of Christ 
from glory to glory.
Lord, in your mercy.
Hear our prayer.

Hold in your embrace all who witness to your love 
in the service of the poor and needy;
all who minister to the sick and dying;
and all who bring light to those in darkness.
Lord, in your mercy.
Hear our prayer.

Remember in your mercy all those gone before us 
who have been well-pleasing to you from eternity;
preserve in your faith your servants on earth,
guide us to your kingdom,
and grant us your peace at all times.
Lord, in your mercy.
Hear our prayer.

We give you thanks 
for the whole company of your saints in glory,
with whom in fellowship we join our prayers and praises;
by your grace may we, like them, be made perfect in your love.

Merciful Father,
accept these prayers
for the sake of your Son,
our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 
you gave us your Son, 
the beloved one who was rejected, 
the Savior who appeared defeated. 
Yet the mystery of his kingship illumines our lives. 
Show us in his death the victory that crowns the ages, 
and in his broken body the love that unites heaven and earth. 
We ask this through your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, 
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, 
one God, forever and ever. Amen.
Uniting our prayers with the whole company of heaven,
let us pray as our Savior has taught us.

- The Lord's Prayer

May Christ our King make us faithful and strong to do his will,
that we may reign with him in glory; Amen.

The psalms and the invitation to the Lord's Prayer are from _Celebrating Common
Prayer_ (Mowbray), (c) The Society of Saint Francis 1992, which is used with

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 and the closing sentence are adapted from
_Common Worship: Services and Prayers for the Church of
England_, material from which is included in this service is copyright
(c) The Archbishops' Council, 2000.

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