OREMUS: 5 March 2012

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Sun Mar 4 17:00:00 GMT 2012

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OREMUS for March 5

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

For those who want
to save their life will lose it,
and those who lose their life for my sake,
and for the sake of the gospel, will save it.
Let us worship God.

Blessed are you, God of all times and places,
for in Jesus Christ, lifted up on the cross,
you opened for us the path to eternal life.
In baptism we are born again
of water and the Spirit,
that we may joyfully serve you
in newness of life
and faithfully walk in your holy ways.
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 24

The earth is the Lord's and all that is in it,*
 the world and all who dwell therein. 
For it is he who founded it upon the seas*
 and made it firm
 upon the rivers of the deep. 
'Who can ascend the hill of the Lord?*
 and who can stand in his holy place?' 
'Those who have clean hands
and a pure heart,*
 who have not pledged
 themselves to falsehood,
 nor sworn by what is a fraud. 
'They shall receive a blessing
from the Lord*
 and a just reward
 from the God of their salvation.' 
Such is the generation
of those who seek him,*
 of those who seek your face,
 O God of Jacob. 
Lift up your heads, O gates;
lift them high, O everlasting doors;*
 and the King of glory shall come in. 
'Who is this King of glory?'*
 'The Lord, strong and mighty,
  the Lord, mighty in battle.' 
Lift up your heads, O gates;
lift them high, O everlasting doors;*
 and the King of glory shall come in. 
'Who is he, this King of glory?'*
 'The Lord of hosts,
 he is the King of glory.' 

Psalm 25

To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul;
   my God, I put my trust in you;*
 let me not be humiliated,
   nor let my enemies triumph over me. 
Let none who look to you be put to shame;*
 let the treacherous
 be disappointed in their schemes. 
Show me your ways, O Lord,*
 and teach me your paths. 
Lead me in your truth and teach me,*
 for you are the God of my salvation;
 in you have I trusted all the day long. 
Remember, O Lord,
your compassion and love,*
 for they are from everlasting. 
Remember not the sins of my youth
and my transgressions;*
 remember me according to your love
 and for the sake
 of your goodness, O Lord. 
Gracious and upright is the Lord;*
 therefore he teaches sinners in his way. 
He guides the humble in doing right*
 and teaches his way to the lowly. 
All the paths of the Lord
are love and faithfulness*
 to those who keep his covenant
 and his testimonies. 
For your name's sake, O Lord,*
 forgive my sin, for it is great. 
Who are they who fear the Lord?*
 he will teach them the way
 that they should choose. 
They shall dwell in prosperity,*
 and their offspring shall inherit the land. 
The Lord is a friend to those who fear him*
 and will show them his covenant. 
My eyes are ever looking to the Lord,*
 for he shall pluck my feet out of the net. 
Turn to me and have pity on me,*
 for I am left alone and in misery. 
The sorrows of my heart have increased;*
 bring me out of my troubles. 
Look upon my adversity and misery*
 and forgive me all my sin. 
Look upon my enemies, for they are many,*
 and they bear a violent hatred against me. 
Protect my life and deliver me;*
 let me not be put to shame,
 for I have trusted in you. 
Let integrity and uprightness preserve me,*
 for my hope has been in you. 
Deliver Israel, O God,*
 out of all his troubles. 

Psalm 26

Give judgement for me, O Lord,
for I have lived with integrity;*
 I have trusted in the Lord
 and have not faltered. 
Test me, O Lord, and try me;*
 examine my heart and my mind. 
For your love is before my eyes;*
 I have walked faithfully with you. 
I have not sat with the worthless,*
 nor do I consort with the deceitful. 
I have hated the company of evildoers;*
 I will not sit down with the wicked. 
I will wash my hands
in innocence, O Lord,*
 that I may go in procession
 round your altar, 
Singing aloud a song of thanksgiving*
 and recounting all your wonderful deeds. 
Lord, I love the house in which you dwell*
 and the place where your glory abides. 
Do not sweep me away with sinners,*
 nor my life with those who thirst for blood, 
Whose hands are full of evil plots,*
 and their right hand full of bribes. 
As for me, I will live with integrity;*
 redeem me, O Lord, and have pity on me. 
My foot stands on level ground;*
 in the full assembly I will bless the Lord. 
FIRST READING [Ezekiel 11:14-25]:

Then the word of the Lord came to me: Mortal, your kinsfolk, your own kin, your fellow exiles, the whole house of Israel, all of them, are those of whom the inhabitants of Jerusalem have said, 'They have gone far from the Lord; to us this land is given for a possession.' Therefore say: Thus says the Lord God: Though I removed them far away among the nations, and though I scattered them among the countries, yet I have been a sanctuary to them for a little while in the countries where they have gone. Therefore say: Thus says the Lord God: I will gather you from the peoples, and assemble you out of the countries where you have been scattered, and I will give you the land of Israel. When they come there, they will remove from it all its detestable things and all its abominations. I will give them one heart, and put a new spirit within them; I will remove the heart of stone from their flesh and give them a heart of flesh, so that they may follow my statutes and keep my ordinances and obey them. Then they shall be my people, and I will be their God. But as for those whose heart goes after their detestable things and their abominations, I will bring their deeds upon their own heads, says the Lord God. 

Then the cherubim lifted up their wings, with the wheels beside them; and the glory of the God of Israel was above them. And the glory of the Lord ascended from the middle of the city, and stopped on the mountain east of the city. The spirit lifted me up and brought me in a vision by the spirit of God into Chaldea, to the exiles. Then the vision that I had seen left me. And I told the exiles all the things that the Lord had shown me. 

Words: William Cowper (1731-1800)
Tune: Abridge, Belmont, Beatitudo, Caithness, Martyrdom, Song 67, Stracathro, Windsor

O for a closer walk with God,
A calm and heavenly frame,
A light to shine upon the road
That leads me to the Lamb.

Where is the blessedness I knew
When first I saw the Lord?
Where is that soul-refreshing view
Of Jesus and His word?

What peaceful hours I once enjoyed!
How sweet their memory still!
But they have left an aching void
The world can never fill.

Return, O holy Dove! return,
Sweet messenger of rest!
I hate the sins that made Thee mourn,
And drove Thee from my breast.

The dearest idol I have known,
Whate'er that idol be,
Help me to tear it from Thy throne,
And worship only Thee.

So shall my walk be close with God,
Calm and serene my frame;
So purer light shall mark the road
That leads me to the Lamb.

SECOND READING [Romans 3:1-8]:

Then what advantage has the Jew? Or what is the value of circumcision? Much, in every way. For in the first place the Jews were entrusted with the oracles of God. What if some were unfaithful? Will their faithlessness nullify the faithfulness of God? By no means! Although everyone is a liar, let God be proved true, as it is written, 'So that you may be justified in your words, and prevail in your judging.' But if our injustice serves to confirm the justice of God, what should we say? That God is unjust to inflict wrath on us? (I speak in a human way.) By no means! For then how could God judge the world? But if through my falsehood God's truthfulness abounds to his glory, why am I still being condemned as a sinner? And why not say (as some people slander us by saying that we say), 'Let us do evil so that good may come'? Their condemnation is deserved! 

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

Loving God, as the rising sun chases away the night, so
you have scattered the power of death in the rising of
Jesus Christ, and you bring us all blessings in him.
Especially we thank you for
     the community of faith in our church...
                (We thank you, Lord.)
     those with whom we work or share common concerns...
     the diversity of your children...

     indications of your love at work in the world...
     those who work for reconciliation...

Mighty God, with the dawn of your love you reveal your
victory over all that would destroy or harm, and you
brighten the lives of all who need you. Especially we pray
     families suffering separation...
                (Lord, hear our prayer)
     people different from ourselves...
     those isolated by sickness or sorrow...
     the victims of violence or warfare...
     the church in the Pacific region...

God of love and mercy,
give us clean hands and pure hearts,
that we may walk in innocence
and come to your eternal dwelling,
to praise you in the company of your saints for ever. Amen.
Trusting in God's compassion,
let us pray as our Savior has taught us.

- The Lord's Prayer

To Jesus Christ, who loves us
and freed us from our sins by his blood
and made us to be a kingdom,
priests serving his God and Father,
to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
The psalms are from _Celebrating Common Prayer_ (Mowbray), (c) The Society of Saint Francis 1992, which is used with permission. 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 sentence is Mark 8:35. The opening prayer of thanksgiving and intercession are from _Book of Common Worship_, (c) 1993 Westminster / John Knox Press. The closing prayer is Revelation 1:5-6, NRSV

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