OREMUS: 10 March 2012

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Fri Mar 9 17:00:01 GMT 2012

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OREMUS for March 10

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

Be kind to one another,
forgiving one another,
as God in Christ has forgiven you.
let us worship God.

Blessed are you, eternal God,
your kingdom has broken in our troubled world
through the life, death, and resurrection
of your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
Your holy Word calls us to become
instruments of your saving love,
that the world may come to praise you:
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
Blessed be God for ever!

An opening canticle may be sung. 

Psalm 50

The Lord, the God of gods, has spoken;*
 he has called the earth
 from the rising of the sun
 to its setting.
Out of Zion, perfect in its beauty,*
 God reveals himself in glory.
Our God will come
and will not keep silence;*
 before him there is a consuming flame,
 and round about him a raging storm.
He calls the heavens
and the earth from above*
 to witness the judgement of his people.
'Gather before me my loyal followers,*
 those who have made a covenant with me
 and sealed it with sacrifice.'
Let the heavens declare
the rightness of his cause;*
 for God himself is judge.
Hear, O my people, and I will speak: 
'O Israel, I will bear witness against you;*
 for I am God, your God.
'I do not accuse you
because of your sacrifices;*
 your offerings are always before me.
'I will take no bull-calf from your stalls,*
 nor he-goats out of your pens;
'For the beasts of the forest are mine,*
 the herds in their thousands upon the hills.
'I know every bird in the sky,*
 and the creatures of the fields
 are in my sight.
'If I were hungry, I would not tell you,*
 for the whole world is mine
 and all that is in it.
'Do you think I eat the flesh of bulls,*
 or drink the blood of goats?
'Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving*
 and make good your vows
 to the Most High.
'Call upon me in the day of trouble;*
 I will deliver you and you shall honour me.'
But to the wicked God says:*
 'Why do you recite my statutes, 
 and take my covenant upon your lips;
'Since you refuse discipline,*
 and toss my words behind your back?
'When you see a thief, 
you make him your friend,*
 and you cast in your lot with adulterers.
'You have loosed your lips for evil,*
 and harnessed your tongue to a lie.
'You are always speaking
evil of your brother*
 and slandering your own mother's son.
'These things you have done
and I kept still,*
 and you thought that I am like you.
'I have made my accusation;*
 I have put my case in order
 before your eyes.
'Consider this well, you who forget God,*
 lest I rend you
 and there be none to deliver you.
'Whoever offers me
the sacrifice of thanksgiving honours me;*
 but to those who keep in my way
 will I show the salvation of God.'

Psalm 51

Have mercy on me, O God, 
according to your loving-kindness;*
 in your great compassion
 blot out my offences.
Wash me through and through
from my wickedness*
 and cleanse me from my sin.
For I know my transgressions,*
 and my sin is ever before me.
Against you only have I sinned*
 and done what is evil in your sight.
And so you are justified when you speak*
 and upright in your judgement.
Indeed, I have been wicked from my birth,*
 a sinner from my mother's womb.
For behold, you look for truth
deep within me,*
 and will make me understand
 wisdom secretly.
Purge me from my sin and I shall be pure;*
 wash me and I shall be clean indeed.
Make me hear of joy and gladness,*
 that the body you have broken may rejoice.
Hide your face from my sins*
 and blot out all my iniquities.
Create in me a clean heart, O God,*
 and renew a right spirit within me.
Cast me not away from your presence*
 and take not your holy Spirit from me.
Give me the joy of your saving help again*
 and sustain me with your bountiful Spirit.
I shall teach your ways to the wicked,*
 and sinners shall return to you.
Deliver me from death, O God,*
 and my tongue shall sing
 of your righteousness,
 O God of my salvation.
Open my lips, O Lord,*
 and my mouth shall proclaim your praise.
Had you desired it, 
I would have offered sacrifice,*
 but you take no delight in burnt-offerings.
The sacrifice of God is a troubled spirit;*
 a broken and contrite heart,
 O God, you will not despise.
Be favourable and gracious to Zion,*
 and rebuild the walls of Jerusalem.
Then you will be pleased
with the appointed sacrifices, 
with burnt-offerings and oblations;*
 then shall they offer
 young bullocks upon your altar.

Psalm 52

You tyrant, 
why do you boast of wickedness*
 against the godly all day long?
You plot ruin; 
your tongue is like a sharpened razor,*
 O worker of deception.
You love evil more than good*
 and lying more than speaking the truth.
You love all words that hurt,*
 O you deceitful tongue.
O that God would demolish you utterly,*
 topple you and snatch you
 from your dwelling
 and root you out of the land
 of the living! 
The righteous shall see and tremble,*
 and they shall laugh, saying,
'This is the one
who did not take God for a refuge,*
 but trusted in great wealth
 and relied upon wickedness.'
But I am like a green olive tree
in the house of God;*
 I trust in the mercy of God
 for ever and ever.
I will give you thanks
for what you have done*
 and declare the goodness of your name
 in the presence of the godly.
FIRST READING [Exodus 5:1-6:1]:

Afterwards Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and said, 'Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, "Let my people go, so that they may celebrate a festival to me in the wilderness." ' But Pharaoh said, 'Who is the Lord, that I should heed him and let Israel go? I do not know the Lord, and I will not let Israel go.' Then they said, 'The God of the Hebrews has revealed himself to us; let us go a three days' journey into the wilderness to sacrifice to the Lord our God, or he will fall upon us with pestilence or sword.' But the king of Egypt said to them, 'Moses and Aaron, why are you taking the people away from their work? Get to your labours!' Pharaoh continued, 'Now they are more numerous than the people of the land and yet you want them to stop working!' That same day Pharaoh commanded the taskmasters of the people, as well as their supervisors, 'You shall no longer give the people straw to make bricks, as before; let them go and gather straw for themselves. But you shall require of them the same quantity of bricks as they have made previously; do not diminish it, for they are lazy; that is why they cry, "Let us go and offer sacrifice to our God." Let heavier work be laid on them; then they will labour at it and pay no attention to deceptive words.' 

So the taskmasters and the supervisors of the people went out and said to the people, 'Thus says Pharaoh, "I will not give you straw. Go and get straw yourselves, wherever you can find it; but your work will not be lessened in the least." ' So the people scattered throughout the land of Egypt, to gather stubble for straw. The taskmasters were urgent, saying, 'Complete your work, the same daily assignment as when you were given straw.' And the supervisors of the Israelites, whom Pharaoh's taskmasters had set over them, were beaten, and were asked, 'Why did you not finish the required quantity of bricks yesterday and today, as you did before?' 

Then the Israelite supervisors came to Pharaoh and cried, 'Why do you treat your servants like this? No straw is given to your servants, yet they say to us, "Make bricks!" Look how your servants are beaten! You are unjust to your own people.' He said, 'You are lazy, lazy; that is why you say, "Let us go and sacrifice to the Lord." Go now, and work; for no straw shall be given you, but you shall still deliver the same number of bricks.' The Israelite supervisors saw that they were in trouble when they were told, 'You shall not lessen your daily number of bricks.' As they left Pharaoh, they came upon Moses and Aaron who were waiting to meet them. They said to them, 'The Lord look upon you and judge! You have brought us into bad odour with Pharaoh and his officials, and have put a sword in their hand to kill us.' 

Then Moses turned again to the Lord and said, 'O Lord, why have you mistreated this people? Why did you ever send me? Since I first came to Pharaoh to speak in your name, he has mistreated this people, and you have done nothing at all to deliver your people.' 
Then the Lord said to Moses, 'Now you shall see what I will do to Pharaoh: Indeed, by a mighty hand he will let them go; by a mighty hand he will drive them out of his land.' 

Words: Herman G Stuempfle Jnr (1923-2007)
© 1988 Stainer & Bell Ltd

Tune: Invercarry (LM)

When from eternity you came,
O Son of God, to this poor earth,
You did not shun our human frame
But in a stable had your birth.

You are the uncreated Word,
Yet you were tempted sore and tried;
The stars and planets name you Lord,
Yet lordly pow'r you laid aside.

Your might a servant's form concealed
As low you bent to human need;
Yet royal Love shone forth, revealed
In pity's touch, in mercy's deed.

O Christ, a crown your brow adorns;
A throne you mount to sovereignty.
But, see, that crown, it is of thorns;
The throne you mount, a cruel tree.

But now exalted high you stand
Who once a servant's garments wore,
The risen King of every land,
To whom be glory evermore.

SECOND READING [Philippians 3:4-14]:

I, too, have reason for confidence in the flesh. If anyone else has reason to be confident in the flesh, I have more: circumcised on the eighth day, a member of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew born of Hebrews; as to the law, a Pharisee; as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to righteousness under the law, blameless. 

Yet whatever gains I had, these I have come to regard as loss because of Christ. More than that, I regard everything as loss because of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things, and I regard them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but one that comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God based on faith. I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the sharing of his sufferings by becoming like him in his death, if somehow I may attain the resurrection from the dead. 

Not that I have already obtained this or have already reached the goal; but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Beloved, I do not consider that I have made it my own; but this one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on towards the goal for the prize of the heavenly call of God in Christ Jesus. 

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

God’s foolishness is wiser than human wisdom, and God’s weakness is stronger than human strength. Therefore let us pray to the Lord saying, "O Lord, our strength and our redeemer, hear our prayer."

Almighty God, you are most fully present, not in any building, but in your Son Jesus: may we remove any obstacles that prevent your people from experiencing your presence. O Lord, our strength and our redeemer, hear our prayer.

Righteous God, your statutes are just and rejoice the heart: may your justice revive weary souls around the world.  May your perfect Law be valued more than fine gold. O Lord, our strength and our redeemer, hear our prayer.

Creator God, the heavens declare your glory: train our ears to hear and value the testimony of your handiwork.  O Lord, our strength and our redeemer, hear our prayer.

O Lord, you give wisdom to the innocent: we thank you for public libraries.  We thank you that there are places where all people, rich and poor, young and old, can increase in knowledge of you and all you have made.  O Lord, our strength and our redeemer, hear our prayer.

Gracious God, your steadfast love extends to the thousandth generation of those who love you: we pray that you will defend us, and all whom we love, from all adversities which may happen to the body, and from all evil thoughts which may assault and hurt the soul. O Lord, our strength and our redeemer, hear our prayer.

Everliving God, you raised Jesus from the dead: We entrust the dead to the Crucified One in the hope that those who have died in Christ will also be raised to new life in him. O Lord, our strength and our redeemer, hear our prayer.

O God, you desire mercy and not sacrifice,
the knowledge of you rather than burnt offerings:
rule and direct our hearts in the way of true religion
and save us in the day of your appearing;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Trusting in the compassion of God,
let us pray as our Savior taught us:

- The Lord's Prayer

Shape us and transform us by your grace,
that we maygrow in wisdom and in confidence,
never faltering until your realm of shalom
shall come to fulfillment. Amen.
The psalms are from _Celebrating Common Prayer_ (Mowbray), (c) The Society of Saint Francis 1992, which is used with permission. he 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 Ephesians 4:32. The opening prayer of thanksgiving is from _Book of Common Worship_, (c) 1993 Westminster / John Knox Press. The closing sentence is reprinted from _Revised Common Lectionary Prayers_, copyright (c) 2002 Consultation on Common Texts. The intercession is Jeremiah Williamson http://jeremiahwilliamson.blogspot.com/2012/03/v-behaviorurldefaultvmlo.html.

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