OREMUS: 2 March 2008

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Sat Mar 1 17:00:01 GMT 2008


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OREMUS for Sunday, March 2, 2008
The Fourth Sunday in Lent

O God, make speed to save us;
O Lord, make haste to help us.

Glory to you, O Champion of all Loves,
who for our sake endured the cross,
encountered the enemy and tasted death.
Glory be to you, O King of all kings,
who for our salvation
wrestled with principalities and powers,
subdued the forces of hell
and won the greatest of all victories.
To you be all praise, all glory and all love;
now and for ever. Amen.

An opening canticle may be sung. 

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

Psalm 95

Come, let us sing to the Lord;*
 let us shout for joy to the rock of our salvation.
Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving*
 and raise a loud shout to him with psalms.
For the Lord is a great God,*
 and a great king above all gods.
In his hand are the depths of the earth,*
 and the heights of the hills are his also.
The sea is his, for he made it,*
 and his hands have moulded the dry land.
Come, let us bow down and bend the knee,*
 and kneel before the Lord our Maker.
For he is our God,
   and we are the people of his pasture
   and the sheep of his hand.*
 O that today you would hearken to his voice!
'Harden not your hearts,
   as your forebears did in the wilderness,*
 at Meribah, and on that day at Massah,
   when they tempted me.
'They put me to the test,*
 though they had seen my works.
'Forty years long I detested that generation and said,*
 "This people are wayward in their hearts;
 they do not know my ways."
'So I swore in my wrath,*
 "They shall not enter into my rest."'

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 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.

FIRST READING [Prayer of Manasseh]:

O Lord Almighty,
God of our ancestors,
of Abraham and Isaac and Jacob
and of their righteous offspring;
you who made heaven and earth
with all their order;
who shackled the sea by your word of command,
who confined the deep
and sealed it with your terrible and glorious name;
at whom all things shudder,
and tremble before your power,
for your glorious splendour cannot be borne,
and the wrath of your threat to sinners is unendurable;
yet immeasurable and unsearchable
is your promised mercy,
for you are the Lord Most High,
of great compassion, long-suffering, and very merciful,
and you relent at human suffering.
O Lord, according to your great goodness
you have promised repentance and forgiveness
to those who have sinned against you,
and in the multitude of your mercies
you have appointed repentance for sinners,
so that they may be saved.
Therefore you, O Lord, God of the righteous,
have not appointed repentance for the righteous,
for Abraham and Isaac and Jacob, who did not sin against you,
but you have appointed repentance for me, who am a sinner.

For the sins I have committed are more in number than the sand of the sea;
my transgressions are multiplied, O Lord, they are multiplied!
I am not worthy to look up and see the height of heaven
because of the multitude of my iniquities.
I am weighted down with many an iron fetter,
so that I am rejected because of my sins,
and I have no relief;
for I have provoked your wrath
and have done what is evil in your sight,
setting up abominations and multiplying offences.

And now I bend the knee of my heart,
imploring you for your kindness.
I have sinned, O Lord, I have sinned,
and I acknowledge my transgressions.
I earnestly implore you,
forgive me, O Lord, forgive me!
Do not destroy me with my transgressions!
Do not be angry with me for ever or store up evil for me;
do not condemn me to the depths of the earth.
For you, O Lord, are the God of those who repent,
and in me you will manifest your goodness;
for, unworthy as I am, you will save me according to your great mercy,
and I will praise you continually all the days of my life.
For all the host of heaven sings your praise,
and yours is the glory for ever. Amen. 

HYMN 
Words: Samuel J. Stone, 1866
Tune: Langran

http://www.oremus.org/hymnal/w/w184.html
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Weary of earth, and laden with my sin,
I look at heaven and long to enter in,
but there no evil thing may find a home:
and yet I hear a voice that bids me "Come."

I am unworthy; dare I hope to stand
in the pure glory of the heavenly land?
Before the whiteness of that throne appear?
Yet there are hands stretched out to draw me near.

The while I fain would tread the heavenly way
evil is ever with me day by day;
yet on mine ears the gracious tidings fall:
"Repent, confess, thou shalt be loosed from all."

It is the voice of Jesus that I hear;
his are the hands stretched out to draw me near,
and his the blood that can for all atone,
and set me faultless there before the throne.

'Twas he who found me on the deathly wild,
and made me heir of heaven, the Father's child,
and day by day, whereby my soul may live,
gives me his grace of pardon, and will give.

O great Absolver, grant my soul may wear
the lowliest garb of penitence and prayer,
that in the Father's courts my glorious dress
may be the garment of thy righteousness.

Yea, thou wilt answer for me, righteous Lord;
thine all the merits, mine the great reward;
thine the sharp thorns, and mine the golden crown;
mine the life won, and thine the life laid down.

SECOND READING [James 5]:

Come now, you rich people, weep and wail for the miseries that are coming to you.
Your riches have rotted, and your clothes are moth-eaten. Your gold and silver have
rusted, and their rust will be evidence against you, and it will eat your flesh like fire.
You have laid up treasure for the last days. Listen! The wages of the labourers who
mowed your fields, which you kept back by fraud, cry out, and the cries of the
harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts. You have lived on the earth in
luxury and in pleasure; you have fattened your hearts on a day of slaughter. You have
condemned and murdered the righteous one, who does not resist you.

Be patient, therefore, beloved, until the coming of the Lord. The farmer waits for the
precious crop from the earth, being patient with it until it receives the early and the
late rains. You also must be patient. Strengthen your hearts, for the coming of the
Lord is near. Beloved, do not grumble against one another, so that you may not be
judged. See, the Judge is standing at the doors! As an example of suffering and
patience, beloved, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. Indeed we
call blessed those who showed endurance. You have heard of the endurance of Job,
and you have seen the purpose of the Lord, how the Lord is compassionate and
merciful.

Above all, my beloved, do not swear, either by heaven or by earth or by any other
oath, but let your 'Yes' be yes and your 'No' be no, so that you may not fall under
condemnation.

Are any among you suffering? They should pray. Are any cheerful? They should sing
songs of praise. Are any among you sick? They should call for the elders of the church
and have them pray over them, anointing them with oil in the name of the Lord. The
prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise them up; and anyone who has
committed sins will be forgiven. Therefore confess your sins to one another, and pray
for one another, so that you may be healed. The prayer of the righteous is powerful
and effective. Elijah was a human being like us, and he prayed fervently that it might
not rain, and for three years and six months it did not rain on the earth. Then he prayed
again, and the heaven gave rain and the earth yielded its harvest.

My brothers and sisters, if anyone among you wanders from the truth and is brought
back by another, you should know that whoever brings back a sinner from wandering
will save the sinner's soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins. 

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

Prayer:
Lord, we pray for this modern world
in which faith comes hard,
where people find it difficult to raise their eyes
above the material things that are so necessary to life.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We pray for those who find it hard to believe
because they have too many things,
and for those who find it hard
because they don't have enough.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We pray for those who have more to eat than they need,
and those who are dying from lack of food.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We pray for parents who, because of their poverty
and a lack of concern on the part of others,
must watch their children die.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We pray for those who suffer from disease,
from confusion and guilt, from depression and fear.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We pray for those who face each day with dread
because their lives are so dominated by the power of others.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We pray for those who are so lonely
that life is robbed of all loveliness and hope.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Lord, we pray because our love for you is a love for one
whose compassion embraces all human suffering.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

God of compassion, 
you are slow to anger, and full of mercy, 
welcoming sinners who return to you with penitent hearts. 
Receive in your loving embrace all who come home to you. 
Seat them at your bountiful table of grace, 
that, with all your children, they may feast with delight 
on all that satisfies the hungry heart. 
We ask this through Jesus Christ our Savior, 
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, 
one God, forever and ever. Amen. 
       
Trusting in the compassion of God,
let us pray as our Savior taught us:

- The Lord's Prayer

Help us, O Lord Jesus Christ,
to enter in your sorrows and to rejoice in your victory;
to embrace your cross and to wear your crown;
to receive the wounds of your love
and to behold you in glory and light;
for your own name's sake. Amen.

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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
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 by Thomas Ken (1637-1711) and the closing prayer
is by St. Bridget of Sweden (1303-1373).



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