OREMUS: 17 December 2008

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Tue Dec 16 17:00:00 GMT 2008


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OREMUS for Wednesday, December 17, 2008
O Sapientia

Lord, open our lips,
and our mouth shall proclaim your praise.

Blessed are you, O Wisdom, O holy Word of God,
coming forth from the mouth of the Most High,
pervading and permeating all creation,
you order all things with strength and gentleness:
You are our Lord Jesus Christ, 
who in these late times became human.
that he might unite the end with the beginning.
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. 

http://www.oremus.org/ocan.html

Psalm 33

Rejoice in the Lord, you righteous;*
 it is good for the just to sing praises.
Praise the Lord with the harp;*
 play to him upon the psaltery and lyre.
Sing for him a new song;*
 sound a fanfare with all your skill upon the trumpet.
For the word of the Lord is right,*
 and all his works are sure.
He loves righteousness and justice;*
 the loving-kindness of the Lord fills the whole earth.
By the word of the Lord were the heavens made,*
 by the breath of his mouth all the heavenly hosts.
He gathers up the waters of the ocean
   as in a water-skin*
 and stores up the depths of the sea.
Let all the earth fear the Lord;*
 let all who dwell in the world stand in awe of him.
For he spoke and it came to pass;*
 he commanded and it stood fast.
The Lord brings the will of the nations to naught;*
 he thwarts the designs of the peoples.
But the Lord's will stands fast for ever,*
 and the designs of his heart from age to age.
Happy is the nation whose God is the Lord!*
 happy the people he has chosen to be his own!
The Lord looks down from heaven,*
 and beholds all the people in the world.
>From where he sits enthroned he turns his gaze*
 on all who dwell on the earth.
He fashions all the hearts of them*
 and understands all their works.
There is no king that can be saved by a mighty army;*
 the strong are not delivered by great strength.nbsp;
The horse is a vain hope for deliverance;*
 for all its strength it cannot save.
Behold, the eye of the Lord
   is upon those who fear him,*
 on those who wait upon his love,
To pluck their lives from death,*
 and to feed them in time of famine.
Our soul waits for the Lord;*
 he is our help and our shield.
Indeed, our heart rejoices in him,*
 for in his holy name we put our trust.
Let your loving-kindness, O Lord, be upon us,*
 as we have put our trust in you.
nbsp;and shall set me before your face for ever.
Blessed be the Lord God of Israel,*
 from age to age. Amen. Amen.

A Song of Pilgrimage (from Ecclesiasticus 51)

While I was still young,
I sought Wisdom openly in my prayer.

Before the temple I asked for her,
and I will search for her until the end.

>From the first blossom to the ripening grape,
my heart delighted in her.

My foot walked on the straight path,
from my youth I followed her steps.

I inclined my ear a little and received her,
I found for myself much instruction.

I made progress in Wisdom;
to the One who sent her,
I will give glory.

I directed my soul to Wisdom,
and in purity have I found her.

With her, I gained understanding from the first,
therefore will I never be forsaken.

My heart was stirred to seek her,
with my tongue will I sing God's praise.

Psalm 147:13-end

Alleluia!
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.
   Alleluia!

FIRST READING [Isaiah 40:1-11]:

Comfort, O comfort my people,
   says your God.
Speak tenderly to Jerusalem,
   and cry to her
that she has served her term,
   that her penalty is paid,
that she has received from the Lord's hand
   double for all her sins.

A voice cries out:
'In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord,
   make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
Every valley shall be lifted up,
   and every mountain and hill be made low;
the uneven ground shall become level,
   and the rough places a plain.
Then the glory of the Lord shall be revealed,
   and all people shall see it together,
   for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.'

A voice says, 'Cry out!'
   And I said, 'What shall I cry?'
All people are grass,
   their constancy is like the flower of the field.
The grass withers, the flower fades,
   when the breath of the Lord blows upon it;
   surely the people are grass.
The grass withers, the flower fades;
   but the word of our God will stand for ever.
Get you up to a high mountain,
   O Zion, herald of good tidings;
lift up your voice with strength,
   O Jerusalem, herald of good tidings,
   lift it up, do not fear;
say to the cities of Judah,
   'Here is your God!'
See, the Lord God comes with might,
   and his arm rules for him;
his reward is with him,
   and his recompense before him.
He will feed his flock like a shepherd;
   he will gather the lambs in his arms,
and carry them in his bosom,
   and gently lead the mother sheep. 

HYMN 
Words: Isaac Watts, 1707

Music: Camberwell (Cambridge)

http://www.oremus.org/hymnal/h/h347.html
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How beauteous are their feet
who stand on Zion's hill
who bring salvation on their tongues
and words of peace reveal!

How charming is their voice!
How sweet the tidings are!
Zion, behold, thy Savior King
he reigns and triumphs here.

How happy are our ears
that hear this joyful sound
which kings and prophets waited for
and sought, but never found.

How blessŠd are our eyes
that see this heavenly light
Prophets and kings desired it long
but died without the sight.

The watchmen join their voice
and tuneful notes employ
Jerusalem breaks forth in songs
and deserts learn the joy.

The Lord makes bare his arm
through all the earth abroad
let every nation now behold
their Savior and their God.

SECOND READING [Luke 3:1-17]:

In the fifteenth year of the reign of Emperor Tiberius, when Pontius Pilate was
governor of Judea, and Herod was ruler of Galilee, and his brother Philip ruler of the
region of Ituraea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias ruler of Abilene, during the
high-priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came to John son of
Zechariah in the wilderness. He went into all the region around the Jordan,
proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins, as it is written in the
book of the words of the prophet Isaiah,
'The voice of one crying out in the wilderness:
"Prepare the way of the Lord,
   make his paths straight.
Every valley shall be filled,
   and every mountain and hill shall be made low,
and the crooked shall be made straight,
   and the rough ways made smooth;
and all flesh shall see the salvation of God." '

John said to the crowds that came out to be baptized by him, 'You brood of vipers!
Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bear fruits worthy of repentance.
Do not begin to say to yourselves, "We have Abraham as our ancestor"; for I tell you,
God is able from these stones to raise up children to Abraham. Even now the axe is
lying at the root of the trees; every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut
down and thrown into the fire.'

And the crowds asked him, 'What then should we do?' In reply he said to them,
'Whoever has two coats must share with anyone who has none; and whoever has food
must do likewise.' Even tax-collectors came to be baptized, and they asked him,
'Teacher, what should we do?' He said to them, 'Collect no more than the amount
prescribed for you.' Soldiers also asked him, 'And we, what should we do?' He said to
them, 'Do not extort money from anyone by threats or false accusation, and be
satisfied with your wages.'

As the people were filled with expectation, and all were questioning in their hearts
concerning John, whether he might be the Messiah, John answered all of them by
saying, 'I baptize you with water; but one who is more powerful than I is coming; I am
not worthy to untie the thong of his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit
and fire. His winnowing-fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing-floor and to gather
the wheat into his granary; but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.' 

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

Prayer:
Come, O Wisdom, come!

Word, spoken in eternity by mouth of the Most High,
O Wisdom of the mind and heart of God!
Come, O Wisdom, come!

Eternal Archetype, all creation's beauty
is fragment of your loveliness!
Come, O Wisdom, come!

Great Logos come to rest in the Virgin's womb!
O Little Wisdom born to us!
Almighty clothed in tenderness!
Come, O Wisdom, come!

>From end to end of time,
the grace of Love Incarnate orders all.
Come, O Wisdom, come!

O Wisdom, let me partake of you and yet still hunger,
and let me drink of you and always thirst.
Come, O Wisdom, come!

O Wisdom that is Love and love's Delight,
teach me to search him through the darkened streets
for whom our hearts long 
Come, O Wisdom, come!

O Wisdom,
your words uttered in the beginning
generated a world of beauty and goodness,
giving purpose and value to each creature;
Instruct us in the way of prudence,
that we may nurture the world with justice and joy;
through the Name of the One who is Coming, 
Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen
       
Awaiting his coming in glory,
let us pray as our Savior has taught us:

- The Lord's Prayer

Music may be found 
here

O come, thou Wisdom from on high,
who orderest all things mightily; 
to us the path of knowledge show,
and teach us in her ways to go. 
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
shall come to thee, O Israel!

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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 and the closing sentence are adapted from
a Eucharistic Prayer by Colin Thompson, (c) 2003, United Reformed Church. Used
with permission.



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