Oremus for Sunday, December 13, 2020

John the Baptist Being Questioned, Amiens Cathedral, 1508-19

For another form of worship in the home based on today’s lessons in the Revised Common Lectionary, go to https://blogs.elca.org/worship/3133/

Antiphon1

Ant. Rejoice in the Lord always; * again I say, rejoice.
Let your forbearance be known to all men.
The Lord is at hand.
Do not be anxious over anything;
but in all manner of prayer,
let your requests be made known unto God.
V. O Lord, you have favored your land, *
and brought back the captives of Jacob.
You forgave the guilt of your people, *
and covered all their sins.
You averted all your rage; *
you turned back the heat of your anger. Philippians 4; Psalm 85

Almighty God,
give us grace to cast away the works of darkness,
and put on the armor of light,
now in the time of this mortal life
in which your Son Jesus Christ came
to visit us in great humility;
that in the last day,
when he shall come again in his glorious majesty
to judge both the living and the dead,
we may rise to the life immortal;
through him who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Music: https://tinyurl.com/ycn4djk5

O Lord, open my lips.
And my mouth will declare your praise.
Make haste, O God, to deliver me;
make haste to help me, O Lord.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit,
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be forever. Amen.
Praise to you, O Christ, Alleluia!

HYMN: James Lewis Milligan
Tune: Ascension https://tinyurl.com/yxm522wp

1 There’s a voice in the wilderness crying,
a call from the ways untrod:
Prepare in the desert a highway,
a highway for our God!
The valleys shall be exalted,
the lofty hills brought low;
make straight all the crooked places
where the God, our God, may go!

2 O Jerusalem, herald good tidings,
ascend to the heights and sing!
Proclaim to a desolate people
the coming of their king.
Like flow’rs of the field we perish,
like grass our works decay;
the pow’r and the pomp of nations
shall pass like a dream away.

3 But the word of our Savior is faithful,
the arm of our God is strong,
who stands in the midst of the nations
and soon will right the wrong.
Lord, feed your flock like a shepherd,
the lambs so gently hold;
in pastures of peace now lead them,
and bring them to your fold.

PSALMS
For psalms in contemporary language, https://tinyurl.com/y9tjh7rk

Psalm 69 (Anglican Chant: https://tinyurl.com/ybbl2s4j)

1  Save me, O God *
 for the waters are come in, even unto my soul.
2  I stick fast in the deep mire, where no ground is *
 I am come into deep waters, so that the floods run over me.
3  I am weary of crying; my throat is dry *
 my sight faileth me for waiting so long upon my God.
4  They that hate me without a cause are more than the hairs of my head *
 they that are mine enemies, and would destroy me guiltless, are mighty.
5  I paid them the things that I never took *
 God, thou knowest my simpleness, and my faults are not hid from thee.
6  Let not them that trust in thee, O Lord God of hosts, be ashamed for my cause *
 let not those that seek thee be confounded through me, O Lord God of Israel.
7  And why? for thy sake have I suffered reproof *
 shame hath covered my face.
8  I am become a stranger unto my brethren *
 even an alien unto my mother’s children.
9  For the zeal of thine house hath even eaten me *
 and the rebukes of them that rebuked thee are fallen upon me.
10  I wept, and chastened myself with fasting *
 and that was turned to my reproof.
11  I put on sackcloth also *
 and they jested upon me.
12  They that sit in the gate speak against me *
 and the drunkards make songs upon me.
13  But, Lord, I make my prayer unto thee *
 in an acceptable time.
14  Hear me, O God, in the multitude of thy mercy *
 even in the truth of thy salvation.
15  Take me out of the mire, that I sink not *
 O let me be delivered from them that hate me, and out of the deep waters.
16  Let not the water-flood drown me, neither let the deep swallow me up *
 and let not the pit shut her mouth upon me.
17  Hear me, O Lord, for thy loving-kindness is comfortable *
 turn thee unto me according to the multitude of thy mercies.
18  And hide not thy face from thy servant, for I am in trouble *
 O haste thee, and hear me.
19  Draw nigh unto my soul, and save it *
 O deliver me, because of mine enemies.
20  Thou hast known my reproof, my shame, and my dishonour *
 mine adversaries are all in thy sight.
21  Thy rebuke hath broken my heart; I am full of heaviness *
 I looked for some to have pity on me, but there was no man,
neither found I any to comfort me.
22  They gave me gall to eat *
 and when I was thirsty they gave me vinegar to drink.
23  Let their table be made a snare to take themselves withal *
 and let the things that should have been for their wealth
be unto them an occasion of falling.
24  Let their eyes be blinded, that they see not *
 and ever bow thou down their backs.
25  Pour out thine indignation upon them *
 and let thy wrathful displeasure take hold of them.
26  Let their habitation be void *
 and no man to dwell in their tents.
27  For they persecute him whom thou hast smitten *
 and they talk how they may vex them whom thou hast wounded.
28  Let them fall from one wickedness to another *
 and not come into thy righteousness.
29  Let them be wiped out of the book of the living *
 and not be written among the righteous.
30  As for me, when I am poor and in heaviness *
 thy help, O God, shall lift me up.
31  I will praise the Name of God with a song *
 and magnify it with thanksgiving.
32  This also shall please the Lord *
 better than a bullock that hath horns and hoofs.
33  The humble shall consider this, and be glad *
 seek ye after God, and your soul shall live.
34  For the Lord heareth the poor *
 and despiseth not his prisoners.
35  Let heaven and earth praise him *
 the sea, and all that moveth therein.
36  For God will save Sion, and build the cities of Judah *
 that men may dwell there, and have it in possession.
37  The posterity also of his servants shall inherit it *
 and they that love his Name shall dwell therein.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son :
and to the Holy Ghost;
as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be :
world without end. Amen.

Psalm 70 (Anglican Chant: https://tinyurl.com/ybjtdo2u)

1  Haste thee, O God, to deliver me *
 make haste to help me, O Lord.
2  Let them be ashamed and confounded that seek after my soul *
 let them be turned backward and put to confusion that wish me evil.
3  Let them for their reward be soon brought to shame *
 that cry over me, There, there.
4  But let all those that seek thee be joyful and glad in thee *
 and let all such as delight in thy salvation say alway, The Lord be praised.
5  As for me, I am poor and in misery *
 haste thee unto me, O God.
6  Thou art my helper, and my redeemer *
 O Lord, make no long tarrying.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son :
and to the Holy Ghost;
as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be :
world without end. Amen.

PRAYER

Blessed are you, God of hope;
you restore the fallen
and rebuild the broken walls.
Teach us the song of thanksgiving,
for you are the strength of your people;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. BCW

THE WORD OF GOD

Reading: Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11

The spirit of the Lord God is upon me,
   because the Lord has anointed me;
he has sent me to bring good news to the oppressed,
   to bind up the broken-hearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
   and release to the prisoners;
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour,
   and the day of vengeance of our God;
   to comfort all who mourn;
to provide for those who mourn in Zion—
   to give them a garland instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness instead of mourning,
   the mantle of praise instead of a faint spirit.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
   the planting of the Lord, to display his glory.
They shall build up the ancient ruins,
   they shall raise up the former devastations;
they shall repair the ruined cities,
   the devastations of many generations.

For I the Lord love justice,
   I hate robbery and wrongdoing;
I will faithfully give them their recompense,
   and I will make an everlasting covenant with them.
Their descendants shall be known among the nations,
   and their offspring among the peoples;
all who see them shall acknowledge
   that they are a people whom the Lord has blessed.
I will greatly rejoice in the Lord,
   my whole being shall exult in my God;
for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation,
   he has covered me with the robe of righteousness,
as a bridegroom decks himself with a garland,
   and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
For as the earth brings forth its shoots,
   and as a garden causes what is sown in it to spring up,
so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise
   to spring up before all the nations.

HYMN: Psalm 126; para. Ruth Duck
Tune: Resignation https://tinyurl.com/yxt5erja

1 When God restored our common life, 
our hope, our liberty,
at first it seemed a passing dream, 
a waking fantasy;
a shock of joy swept over us, 
for we had wept so long;
the seeds we watered once with tears 
sprang up into a song.

2 We went forth weeping, sowing seeds 
in hard, unyielding soil;
with laughing hearts we carry home 
the fruit of all our toil.
We praise the One who gave the growth, 
with voices full and strong.
The seeds we watered once with tears
sprang up into a song.

3 Great liberating God, we pray 
for all who are oppressed.
May those who long for what is right 
with justice now be blest.
We pray for those who mourn this day, 
and all who suffer wrong;
may seeds they water now with tears 
spring up into a song.

Reading: 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise the words of prophets, but test everything; hold fast to what is good; abstain from every form of evil.

May the God of peace himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be kept sound and blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do this.

HYMN: Michael Morgan ©
Tune: Noel Nouvelet https://tinyurl.com/wvbaxzo

1 God reigns! Earth rejoices! Oceans shout God’s might! 
Clad in truth and joy, God’s throne is our delight. 
Clouds roll aside, and night becomes as day. 
God will dwell among us; God will show the way!

2 Fires will blaze the pathway; stars will mark the place, 
when God comes in glory, meets us face to face. 
Mountains will shake and worthless idols fall; 
Zion will rejoice, for God is Lord of all!

3 Evil walks beside us, crushes with its grief; 
yet in God the faithful find their sure relief. 
Shackles will break and chains of bondage cease; 
former lamentations now are songs of peace.

4 Light dawns for the righteous, joy for God’s own heirs–
love all loves excelling, grace beyond compare. 
Daughters and sons, God’s majesty proclaim! 
Let your hearts declare the Lord’s most holy name!

Reading: John 1:19-28

This is the testimony given by John when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, ‘Who are you?’ He confessed and did not deny it, but confessed, ‘I am not the Messiah.’ And they asked him, ‘What then? Are you Elijah?’ He said, ‘I am not.’ ‘Are you the prophet?’ He answered, ‘No.’ Then they said to him, ‘Who are you? Let us have an answer for those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?’ He said, ‘I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, “Make straight the way of the Lord” ’, as the prophet Isaiah said.

Now they had been sent from the Pharisees. They asked him, ‘Why then are you baptizing if you are neither the Messiah, nor Elijah, nor the prophet?’ John answered them, ‘I baptize with water. Among you stands one whom you do not know, the one who is coming after me; I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandal.’ This took place in Bethany across the Jordan where John was baptizing.

CANTICLE: Luke 1:68-79
(Consiglio: https://tinyurl.com/ya8y3kqs)

Ant. Blest be the Lord God of Israel; *
who has come to his people and set them free.

God has raiséd up a Savior strong and proud,
born of his servant David.
And through holy prophets God has promised from of old,
to save us from all our foes, from the hands of all who hate us. Ant.

God promised to show mercy to our ancestors
to remember the covenant.
This was the oath sworn to father Abraham,
to set us free from our enemies’ hands,
free to worship God without fear, *
holy and righteous in his sight all the days of our life. Ant.

You, little child, are the prophet of the Lord,
you will go before the Lord to prepare the way,
To give the people knowledge of salvation
by forgiveness of their sins.
In the tender compassion of our God
the dawn from on high breaks upon us,
to shine on us who dwell in the shadow of death,
and to guide our feet on the way of peace. Ant.

THE PRAYERS Joe Milner

For the Church: that we, who have been created in the image and likeness of God and destined for eternal life with God, may always find joy through our relationship with Christ

For a joyful spirit: that as we recognize the gift of our relationships and the many blessings that God has given us, our hearts may be grateful, and our spirits filled with joy

For freedom of spirit: that God will free us from selfishness, prejudice, and fear so that we may be sisters and brothers to one another

For the growth of reverence: that God will open our eyes so that we may see the presence of God in one another and help us to listen attentively to each other

For a renewal of the gift of the Holy Spirit: that God will stir up the Spirit that has been given to us so that we may announce Good News, share hope, and offer compassionate care for those around us

For a renewal of prayer: that we may recognize how God is communicating with us in every moment and allow our words and deeds to be a response to the love that God has shown us

For all who are held captive whether by economic situations, lack of education, or by addiction: that God will free them and open new opportunities for life, growth, and wholeness

For all who cannot find God: that the lights, hymns, and warm greetings of this season may be a doorway to finding God in all things and recognizing that God is with us

For all who must wait: that God’s loving presence will give strength and hope to those who are in isolation, awaiting surgery or the birth of a child, or who are caring for the sick or dying

For a new appreciation of the created world: that we may find God in all things that God has created and rejoice that God is close to us this day

For all public officials: that God will move them to recognize and take action to address the needs of the poor, the homeless, the elderly, and children so that no one will be forgotten in our communities

For all who are suffering economically: that God will guide the unemployed to new work, bring relief to those who face losing their homes, and open new resources for those who do not have enough food

For all who are working to defeat the coronavirus: that God will speed the production of the vaccine, guide those who are distributing it, and help those who are administering it

For all who are ill: that God’s healing love may renew and strengthen all who are ill or recovering from surgery

For peace between nations and within cities: that God will turn hearts from violence and bring forth a new springtime of justice and peace in every land

(Traditional chant: https://tinyurl.com/ydzx5jdp)

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy Name,
thy kingdom come,
thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread;
and forgive us our trespasses
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.

[For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory,
for ever and ever. Amen.]

God of hope,
you call us home from the exile of selfish oppression
to the freedom of justice,
the balm of healing,
and the joy of sharing.
Make us strong to join you in your holy work,
as friends of strangers and victims,
companions of those whom others shun,
and as the happiness of those whose hearts are broken.
We make our prayer through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. RCLP

Music: https://tinyurl.com/y9efvwm5
Let us bless the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God,
and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with us all. Amen. 2 Cor. 13:14


Donation to Support This Ministry

Since 1993, Oremus has been done on a volunteer basis. If you are able, please consider supporting this work at the PayPal link below. For software reasons, I’ve set the value at $10.00, but feel free to change it. Thank you.

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BCW Book of Common Worship, Presbyterian Church U.S.A., 1993.

RCLP Revised Common Lectionary Prayers. © 2002 Consultation on Common Texts admin. Augsburg Fortress.

1 Adam Bartlett, Simple English Propers; audio from https://musicasacra.com/additional-publications/sep-practice-videos/ ©

The intercessions are by Joe Milner http://liturgy.slu.edu

The three main scripture readings are from the The New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised Edition, The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

The psalms are from The Book of Common Prayer (1662).

Musical links are usually either to artists’ albums posted on Spotify or to recordings made available at smallchurchmusic.com. Audio stripped from YouTube videos is footnoted accordingly above.

Compilation © 2020 Stephen T. Benner. All links worked at the time they were created, but I cannot accept responsibility for their content or any damage resulting from their use. The linked content is under the control of the respective content creators and is subject to change at any time. Any copyright texts included in this compilation are provided for non-commercial purposes related to study or worship. Please contact the respective copyright holders for permission to use the texts in other contexts.

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