OREMUS: 14 July 2008

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Sun Jul 13 17:00:01 GMT 2008

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OREMUS for Monday, July 14, 2008
The Assize Sermon, John Keble, 1833

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

Blessed are you, Lord of all creation;
in your love you made us for yourself.
When we turned away you did not reject us,
but came to meet us in your Son.
You embraced us as your children
and welcomed us to sit and eat with you.
In Christ you shared our life
that we might live in him and he in us.
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 116

I love the Lord,
   because he has heard the voice of my supplication,*
 because he has inclined his ear to me
   whenever I called upon him.
The cords of death entangled me;
   the grip of the grave took hold of me;*
 I came to grief and sorrow.
Then I called upon the name of the Lord:*
 'O Lord, I pray you, save my life.'
Gracious is the Lord and righteous;*
 our God is full of compassion.
The Lord watches over the innocent;*
 I was brought very low and he helped me.
Turn again to your rest, O my soul,*
 for the Lord has treated you well.
For you have rescued my life from death,*
 my eyes from tears and my feet from stumbling.
I will walk in the presence of the Lord*
 in the land of the living.
I believed, even when I said,
   'I have been brought very low.'*
 In my distress I said, 'No one can be trusted.'
How shall I repay the Lord*
 for all the good things he has done for me?
I will lift up the cup of salvation*
 and call upon the name of the Lord.
I will fulfil my vows to the Lord*
 in the presence of all his people.
Precious in the sight of the Lord*
 is the death of his servants.
O Lord, I am your servant;*
 I am your servant and the child of your handmaid;
   you have freed me from my bonds.
I will offer you the sacrifice of thanksgiving*
 and call upon the name of the Lord.
I will fulfil my vows to the Lord*
 in the presence of all his people.
In the courts of the Lord's house,*
 in the midst of you, O Jerusalem.

A Song of the Rock (Deuteronomy 32.1-12)

Give ear, O heavens, and I will speak;  
and let the earth hear the words of my mouth. 
May my teaching drop as the rain, 
my speech distil as the dew,  
as the gentle rain on the grass, 
and as the showers upon the meadow. 
For I will proclaim the name of the Lord.  
Ascribe greatness to our God! 
The Rock, his work is perfect; for all his ways are just:  
a faithful God without deceit, just and upright is he. 
His degenerate children have dealt corruptly with him;  
a perverse and crooked generation. 
Do you thus repay the Lord, you foolish and senseless people?  
Is not he your father, who created you, 
who made you and established you? 
Remember the days of old, consider the years long past;  
ask your father, and he will show you; 
your elders, and they will tell you. 
When the Most High gave the nations their inheritance, 
when he divided the children of earth,  
he fixed the bounds of the peoples 
according to the number of the children of God. 
For the Lord's own portion is his people,  
Jacob his allotted heritage. 
He sustained him in a desert land, 
in the howling waste of the wilderness;  
he shielded him and cared for him; 
he kept him as the apple of his eye. 
As an eagle stirs up its nest, and hovers over its young,  
spreading out its wings, takes them, 
and bears them aloft on its pinions, 
So the Lord alone did guide him,  
and no foreign god was with him.

Psalm 146

   Praise the Lord, O my soul!*
 I will praise the Lord as long as I live;
   I will sing praises to my God while I have my being.
Put not your trust in rulers,
   nor in any child of earth,*
 for there is no help in them.
When they breathe their last, they return to earth,*
 and in that day their thoughts perish.
Happy are they who have the God of Jacob
   for their help!*
 whose hope is in the Lord their God;
Who made heaven and earth, the seas,
   and all that is in them;*
 who keeps his promise for ever;
Who gives justice to those who are oppressed,*
 and food to those who hunger.
The Lord sets the prisoners free;
   the Lord opens the eyes of the blind;*
 the Lord lifts up those who are bowed down;
The Lord loves the righteous;
   the Lord cares for the stranger;*
 he sustains the orphan and widow,
   but frustrates the way of the wicked.
The Lord shall reign for ever,*
 your God, O Zion, throughout all generations.

FIRST READING [Daniel 6:1-8]:

It pleased Darius to set over the kingdom one hundred and twenty satraps, stationed
throughout the whole kingdom, and over them three presidents, including Daniel; to
these the satraps gave account, so that the king might suffer no loss. Soon Daniel
distinguished himself above all the other presidents and satraps because an excellent
spirit was in him, and the king planned to appoint him over the whole kingdom. So the
presidents and the satraps tried to find grounds for complaint against Daniel in
connection with the kingdom. But they could find no grounds for complaint or any
corruption, because he was faithful, and no negligence or corruption could be found in
him. The men said, 'We shall not find any ground for complaint against this Daniel
unless we find it in connection with the law of his God.'
So the presidents and satraps conspired and came to the king and said to him, 'O King
Darius, live for ever! All the presidents of the kingdom, the prefects and the satraps,
the counsellors and the governors, are agreed that the king should establish an
ordinance and enforce an interdict, that whoever prays to anyone, divine or human, for
thirty days, except to you, O king, shall be thrown into a den of lions. Now, O king,
establish the interdict and sign the document, so that it cannot be changed, according
to the law of the Medes and the Persians, which cannot be revoked.' 

Words: Latin, seventh century; trans. John Mason Neale, 1851
Tune: Westminster Abbey   

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Christ is made the sure foundation,
Christ the head and cornerstone,
chosen of the Lord, and precious,
binding all the Church in one;
holy Zion's help for ever,
and her confidence alone.

All that dedicated city,
dearly loved of God on high,
in exultant jubilation
pours perpetual melody;
God the One in Three adoring
in glad hymns eternally.

To this temple, where we call thee,
come, O Lord of Hosts, today;
with thy wonted loving-kindness
hear thy servants as they pray,
and thy fullest benediction
shed within its walls alway.

Here vouchsafe to all thy servants
what they ask of thee of gain;
what they gain from thee, for ever
with the bless d to retain,
and hereafter in thy glory
evermore with thee to reign.

Laud and honor to the Father,
laud and honor to the Son,
laud and honor to the Spirit,
ever Three, and ever One,
consubstantial, co-eternal,
while unending ages run.

SECOND READING [Acts 26:1-23]:

Agrippa said to Paul, 'You have permission to speak for yourself.' Then Paul
stretched out his hand and began to defend himself:
'I consider myself fortunate that it is before you, King Agrippa, I am to make my
defence today against all the accusations of the Jews, because you are especially
familiar with all the customs and controversies of the Jews; therefore I beg of you to
listen to me patiently.
'All the Jews know my way of life from my youth, a life spent from the beginning
among my own people and in Jerusalem. They have known for a long time, if they are
willing to testify, that I have belonged to the strictest sect of our religion and lived as a
Pharisee. And now I stand here on trial on account of my hope in the promise made by
God to our ancestors, a promise that our twelve tribes hope to attain, as they earnestly
worship day and night. It is for this hope, your Excellency, that I am accused by Jews!
Why is it thought incredible by any of you that God raises the dead?
'Indeed, I myself was convinced that I ought to do many things against the name of
Jesus of Nazareth. And that is what I did in Jerusalem; with authority received from
the chief priests, I not only locked up many of the saints in prison, but I also cast my
vote against them when they were being condemned to death. By punishing them often
in all the synagogues I tried to force them to blaspheme; and since I was so furiously
enraged at them, I pursued them even to foreign cities.
'With this in mind, I was travelling to Damascus with the authority and commission of
the chief priests, when at midday along the road, your Excellency, I saw a light from
heaven, brighter than the sun, shining around me and my companions. When we had
all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me in the Hebrew language, "Saul,
Saul, why are you persecuting me? It hurts you to kick against the goads." I asked,
"Who are you, Lord?" The Lord answered, "I am Jesus whom you are persecuting.
But get up and stand on your feet; for I have appeared to you for this purpose, to
appoint you to serve and testify to the things in which you have seen me and to those
in which I will appear to you. I will rescue you from your people and from the
Gentiles to whom I am sending you to open their eyes so that they may turn from
darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive
forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me."
'After that, King Agrippa, I was not disobedient to the heavenly vision, but declared
first to those in Damascus, then in Jerusalem and throughout the countryside of Judea,
and also to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God and do deeds
consistent with repentance. For this reason the Jews seized me in the temple and tried
to kill me. To this day I have had help from God, and so I stand here, testifying to both
small and great, saying nothing but what the prophets and Moses said would take
place: that the Messiah must suffer, and that, by being the first to rise from the dead,
he would proclaim light both to our people and to the Gentiles.' 

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

O God, Creator of all that is and is to be,
In this time of our need,
Hear us, good Lord.

O God the Son, restorer of all creation
In this time of our need,
Hear us, good Lord.

O God the Spirit, ground of all holiness,
In this time of our need,
Hear us, good Lord.

O Holy, Blessed and Glorious Trinity,
In this time of our need,
Hear us, good Lord.

Uphold and govern the Churches of the Anglican Communion;
direct them into love and truth;
and grant them that unity which is your will.
In this time of our need, 
Hear us, good Lord.

Give us such a sense of your love,
and such a vision of your purpose for all creation
that we may receive new understanding of your mercy
and, resisting schism, boldly proclaim the gospel.
In this time of our need,
Hear us, good Lord.

Enlighten your bishops with your special grace;
grant to them wisdom, knowledge and understanding;
empower them with such gifts of reconciliation and love
that, embracing difference and diversity,
our church may joyfully proclaim your word.
In this time of our need,
Hear us, good Lord.

Give us discerning and receptive minds;
where there is anger, grant reconciliation;
where there is prejudice, grant openness;
where there is fearfulness, give serenity;
where there is ambition, give humility.
In this time of our need,
Hear us, good Lord.

Endow us with clarity of thought,
generosity of mind, and charity of speech;
grant us gifts of patience and forbearance;
may we delight in the truth
and be surprised by the Spirit.
In this time of our need,
Hear us, good Lord.

Bring into the way of truth all who have erred
and are deceived.
Hear us, good Lord.

Strengthen those who stand; 
comfort and help the faint-hearted;
raise up the fallen;
and finally beat down all the powers of darkness.
Holy God,
Holy and strong,
Holy and immortal,
Have mercy upon us.

Heavenly Father,
you have called us
in the Body of your Son Jesus Christ
to continue his work of reconciliation
and reveal you to humankind.
Forgive us the sins that tear us apart;
give us the courage to overcome our fears
and to seek that unity
which is your gift and your will;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Almighty God, our heavenly Father,
you so established that wonderful mystery, the Church, 
that all nations might be brought into your fold, 
and your Spirit poured out upon all flesh:
We give thanks for those who call the Church 
to its tasks and renew its life,
such as your servant John Keble.
Raise up in our own day teachers and prophets inspired by your Spirit,
whose voices will give strength to your Church 
that the coming of your kingdom might be hastened; 
through Jesus Christ our Lord, 
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, 
one God, now and for ever. Amen. 
Gathering our prayers and praises into one,
let us pray as our Savior has taught us.

- The Lord's Prayer

You have opened to us the Scriptures, O Christ.
Abide with us, we pray,
that, blessed by your royal presence,
we may walk with you
all the days of our life,
and at its end behold you
in the glory of the eternal Trinity,
one God for ever and ever. 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 and 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.

Sunday, July 14th, Mr. Keble preached the Assize Sermon in the University Pulpit. It was
published under the title of 'National Apostasy.' I have ever considered and kept the day,
as the start of the religious movement of 1833." So wrote John Henry Newman as the
closing words of Part III of Apologia Pro Vita Sua.

The religious movement of which he spoke was the Oxford Movement, a stirring toward
reformation by the high church adherents of the Church of England which began with
Keble's sermon on this day, July 14, 1833. (High Church refers to those elements of ritual
and doctrine which hark back to the church's Roman Catholic roots.) The movement's
immediate cause was the attempted suppression by the British government of ten
bishoprics in Ireland, but the reform leaders were also disturbed by a general decay and
loss of moral fiber in the church. At issue also were the words of the creed, "I believe in
one holy catholic and apostolic church," which had been sorely lost by the rapid fission of
Protestantism into sects.
Keble declared that England had for centuries been acknowledged as a Christian nation.
Logically this meant that the nation was bound by the laws of Christ's church. If public
opinion was calling for action in defiance of those laws, the nation was apostate.

Oxford men of the highest caliber gathered around Keble and tried to form a plan of
action. Among these were two notable scholars, John Henry Newman and Richard Hurrell
Froude. In order to bolster its position, the high church movement sought a basis for
authority in the past of the church. They looked to creeds and apostolic succession as
outward manifestations of ancient authority. Some of the intellectuals who joined the
movement also took an interest in reviving the architectural styles and arts which had long
been associated with the faith. Newman and others sought a new level of spiritual life for
the church with Newman's preaching a sermon titled Holiness Necessary for Future

The Oxford Movement began as an effort to reform the Church of England. It reached a
crisis in 1841 when Newman issued Tract 90 in his continuing series. This claimed that the
39 articles of the Church of England could be interpreted in a Catholic way. In the
resultant furor, he was forbidden as a churchman any longer to publish tracts. He resigned
his positions and, like Henry Manning and William Ward, became Roman Catholic. Keble,
Edward Pusey, and Charles Marriott remained in the Church of England and took
leadership of the movement.

The overall effect of the movement was to restore a higher level of spirituality among the
English clergy. It also forced a reexamination of the doctrinal and authoritative bases of
the church. [chi.gospelcom.net]

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