Oremus for Wednesday, August 18, 2021

The Stoning of St Stephen, Rembrandt van Rijn, 1625

Antiphon https://tinyurl.com/4nsdks7h

O sing a new song to the Lord,
for he has worked wonders;
in the sight of the nations
he has shown his deliverance, alleluia. Psalm 98

Almighty God,
to whom all hearts are open,
all desires, known,
and from whom no secrets are hid:
Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts
by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit,
that we may perfectly love you
and worthily magnify your holy name;
through Christ our Lord. 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: Marty Haugen ©
Tune: https://tinyurl.com/4eddyjwp

1 Here in this place, the new light is streaming;
now are the shadows vanished away.
See in this space our fears and our dreamings,
brought here to you in the light of this day.
Gather us in, the lost and forsaken;
gather us in, our spirits inflame.
Call to us now, and we shall awaken;
we shall arise at the sound of our name.

2 We are the young, our lives are a myst’ry.
We are the old who yearn for your face.
We have been sung throughout all of hist’ry,
called to be light to the whole human race.
Gather us in, the rich and the haughty;
gather us in, the proud and the strong.
Give us a heart, so meek and so lowly;
give us the courage to enter the song.

3 Here we will take the wine of compassion;
here we will take the bread of new birth.
Here we become the people you fashion:
children of God, to be salt for the earth.
Give us to drink the wine ever flowing,
give us to eat the bread that is you.
Nourish us well, and guide us in growing
lives that are holy and hearts that are true.

4 Not just in buildings, dim and confining;
not in some heaven, light-years away:
here in this place, the new light is shining;
now is the dawning and now is the day.
Gather us in and hold us forever;
gather us in and make us your own.
Gather us in, all peoples together,
fire of love in our flesh and our bone.

PSALMS

Psalm 93 (Anglican Chant: https://tinyurl.com/y7tg5urb)
1  The Lord is King, and hath put on glorious apparel *
 the Lord hath put on his apparel, and girded himself with strength.
2  He hath made the round world so sure *
 that it cannot be moved.
3  Ever since the world began hath thy seat been prepared *
 thou art from everlasting.
4  The floods are risen, O Lord, the floods have lift up their voice *
 the floods lift up their waves.
5  The waves of the sea are mighty, and rage horribly *
 but yet the Lord, who dwelleth on high, is mightier.
6  Thy testimonies, O Lord, are very sure *
 holiness becometh thine house for ever.
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 93 (LSB Tone A: http://oremus.org/chant/Psalm-93-LSB.mp3)
The Lord reigns; he is robed in majesty;
the Lord is robed; he has put on strength as his belt.
Yes, the world is established;
it shall never be moved.
Your throne is established from of old;
you are from everlasting.
The floods have lifted up, O Lord, the floods have lifted up their voice;
the floods lift up their roaring.
Mightier than the thunders of many waters,
mightier than the waves of the sea,
the Lord on high is mighty.
Your decrees are very trustworthy;
holiness befits your house, O Lord, forevermore.
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.

Psalm 94 (Anglican Chant: https://tinyurl.com/y8otscow)
1  O Lord God, to whom vengeance belongeth *
 thou God, to whom vengeance belongeth, shew thyself.
2  Arise, thou Judge of the world *
 and reward the proud after their deserving.
3  Lord, how long shall the ungodly *
 how long shall the ungodly triumph?
4  How long shall all wicked doers speak so disdainfully *
 and make such proud boasting?
5  They smite down thy people, O Lord *
 and trouble thine heritage.
6  They murder the widow, and the stranger *
 and put the fatherless to death.
7  And yet they say, Tush, the Lord shall not see *
 neither shall the God of Jacob regard it.
8  Take heed, ye unwise among the people *
 O ye fools, when will ye understand?
9  He that planted the ear, shall he not hear *
 or he that made the eye, shall he not see?
10  Or he that nurtureth the heathen *
 it is he that teacheth man knowledge, shall not he punish?
11  The Lord knoweth the thoughts of man *
 that they are but vain.
12  Blessed is the man whom thou chastenest, O Lord *
 and teachest him in thy law;
13  That thou mayest give him patience in time of adversity *
 until the pit be digged up for the ungodly.
14  For the Lord will not fail his people *
 neither will he forsake his inheritance;
15  Until righteousness turn again unto judgement *
 all such as are true in heart shall follow it.
16  Who will rise up with me against the wicked *
 or who will take my part against the evil-doers?
17  If the Lord had not helped me *
 it had not failed but my soul had been put to silence.
18  But when I said, My foot hath slipt *
 thy mercy, O Lord, held me up.
19  In the multitude of the sorrows that I had in my heart *
 thy comforts have refreshed my soul.
20  Wilt thou have any thing to do with the stool of wickedness *
 which imagineth mischief as a law?
21  They gather them together against the soul of the righteous *
 and condemn the innocent blood.
22  But the Lord is my refuge *
 and my God is the strength of my confidence.
23  He shall recompense them their wickedness, and destroy them in their own malice *
 yea, the Lord our God shall destroy them.
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 94 (Karl Kohlhase: http://oremus.org/chant/Psalm-94-KH.mp3)
O LORD, God of vengeance, God of vengeance, shine forth!

Rise up, O Judge of the earth,
give recompense to the proud.
How long shall the wicked, O LORD,
how long shall the wicked exult?
They pour forth words speaking proudly;
and all who do evil boast.
They crush your people, O LORD,
and afflict your inheritance.

O LORD, God of vengeance, God of vengeance, shine forth!

They slay the widow and stranger,
and even murder orphans.
They say, “The LORD does not see us,
nor does Jacob’s God pay heed.”
Pay heed, all fools of the nations;
when will you fools understand?
He who planted the ear, does he not hear?
he who formed the eye, not see?

O LORD, God of vengeance, God of vengeance, shine forth!

Will he not rebuke who strikes nations,
the One who teaches man knowledge?
The thoughts of man the LORD knows,
that they are merely a breath.
LORD, blessed is the man whom you chasten,
and whom you teach from Your law;
Relieved from days of trouble,
while a pit is dug for the wicked.

O LORD, God of vengeance, God of vengeance, shine forth!

For the LORD won’t abandon his people,
nor will he leave his inheritance.
For judgment will turn for the righteous,
all the upright in heart will follow.
Who will stand with me against evil?
With me against the wicked?
If the LORD had not been my help,
then my soul would soon become mute.

O LORD, God of vengeance, God of vengeance, shine forth!

If I say, “My foot is slipping,”
your love, O LORD, holds me up.
When alarming thoughts grow within me,
then your comfort delights my soul.
Can a throne of ruin be united,
which makes its laws out of mischief?
Set against the life of the righteous,
and condemning the pure to death.

O LORD, God of vengeance, God of vengeance, shine forth!

But the LORD has been my stronghold,
my God the rock of my refuge.
He returns their evil upon them,
they’re destroyed by their own wickedness

The LORD our God. will destroy them!

PRAYER

Omnipotent God,
your glory is incomprehensible,
your majesty infinite,
and your power incomparable.
Found us on the certainty of your promises,
that no matter what happens,
we may be firm in faith
and live uprightly in your church,
bought by the blood of Jesus Christ. Amen. BCW

THE WORD OF GOD

Reading: 1 Kings 2:1-11

When David’s time to die drew near, he charged his son Solomon, saying: ‘I am about to go the way of all the earth. Be strong, be courageous, and keep the charge of the Lord your God, walking in his ways and keeping his statutes, his commandments, his ordinances, and his testimonies, as it is written in the law of Moses, so that you may prosper in all that you do and wherever you turn. Then the Lord will establish his word that he spoke concerning me: “If your heirs take heed to their way, to walk before me in faithfulness with all their heart and with all their soul, there shall not fail you a successor on the throne of Israel.”

‘Moreover, you know also what Joab son of Zeruiah did to me, how he dealt with the two commanders of the armies of Israel, Abner son of Ner, and Amasa son of Jether, whom he murdered, retaliating in time of peace for blood that had been shed in war, and putting the blood of war on the belt around his waist, and on the sandals on his feet. Act therefore according to your wisdom, but do not let his grey head go down to Sheol in peace. Deal loyally, however, with the sons of Barzillai the Gileadite, and let them be among those who eat at your table; for with such loyalty they met me when I fled from your brother Absalom. There is also with you Shimei son of Gera, the Benjaminite from Bahurim, who cursed me with a terrible curse on the day when I went to Mahanaim; but when he came down to meet me at the Jordan, I swore to him by the Lord, “I will not put you to death with the sword.” Therefore do not hold him guiltless, for you are a wise man; you will know what you ought to do to him, and you must bring his grey head down with blood to Sheol.’

Then David slept with his ancestors, and was buried in the city of David. The time that David reigned over Israel was forty years; he reigned for seven years in Hebron, and thirty-three years in Jerusalem.

HYMN: Charles Wesley
Tune: Boylston https://tinyurl.com/3fsm96yy

1. A charge to keep I have,
a God to glorify,
a never-dying soul to save,
and fit it for the sky.

2. To serve the present age,
my calling to fulfill;
O may it all my powers engage
to do my Master’s will!

3. Arm me with jealous care,
as in thy sight to live,
and oh, thy servant, Lord, prepare
a strict account to give!

4. Help me to watch and pray,
and on thyself rely,
assured, if I my trust betray,
I shall forever die.

Reading: Acts 7:51-8:3

Stephen concluded his speech, ‘You stiff-necked people, uncircumcised in heart and ears, you are for ever opposing the Holy Spirit, just as your ancestors used to do. Which of the prophets did your ancestors not persecute? They killed those who foretold the coming of the Righteous One, and now you have become his betrayers and murderers. You are the ones that received the law as ordained by angels, and yet you have not kept it.’

When they heard these things, they became enraged and ground their teeth at Stephen. But filled with the Holy Spirit, he gazed into heaven and saw the glory of God and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. ‘Look,’ he said, ‘I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God!’ But they covered their ears, and with a loud shout all rushed together against him. Then they dragged him out of the city and began to stone him; and the witnesses laid their coats at the feet of a young man named Saul. While they were stoning Stephen, he prayed, ‘Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.’ Then he knelt down and cried out in a loud voice, ‘Lord, do not hold this sin against them.’ When he had said this, he died. And Saul approved of their killing him.

That day a severe persecution began against the church in Jerusalem, and all except the apostles were scattered throughout the countryside of Judea and Samaria. Devout men buried Stephen and made loud lamentation over him. But Saul was ravaging the church by entering house after house; dragging off both men and women, he committed them to prison.

HYMN: Charles Wesley
Tune: Dying Stephen https://tinyurl.com/4u4bw5z5

1 Head of Thy Church triumphant,
We joyfully adore Thee;
Till Thou appear, Thy members here
Shall sing like those in glory:
We lift our hearts and voices
With blest anticipation,
And cry aloud, and give to God
The praise of our salvation.

2 While in affliction’s furnace,
And passing through the fire,
Thy love we praise Which knows our days,
And ever brings us nigher:
We lift our hands exulting
In Thine almighty favor;
The love Divine Which made us Thine,
Shall keep us Thine for ever.

3 Thou dost conduct Thy people
Through torrents of temptation;
Nor will we fear, While Thou art near,
The fire of tribulation:
The world, with sin and Satan,
In vain our march opposes;
Through Thee we shall Break through them all,
And sing the song of Moses.

4 By faith we see the glory
To which Thou shalt restore us,
The cross despise For that high prize
Which Thou hast set before us;
And if Thou count us worthy,
We each, as dying Stephen,
Shall see Thee stand At God’s right hand
To take us up to heaven.

Reading: Luke 5:33-39

Then they said to Jesus, ‘John’s disciples, like the disciples of the Pharisees, frequently fast and pray, but your disciples eat and drink.’ He said to them, ‘You cannot make wedding-guests fast while the bridegroom is with them, can you? The days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them, and then they will fast in those days.’ He also told them a parable: ‘No one tears a piece from a new garment and sews it on an old garment; otherwise the new will be torn, and the piece from the new will not match the old. And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; otherwise the new wine will burst the skins and will be spilled, and the skins will be destroyed. But new wine must be put into fresh wineskins. And no one after drinking old wine desires new wine, but says, “The old is good.” 

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 PWC

Liberator of the peoples, fill all who confess the name of Christ
with the power your Holy Spirit.
Holy One, accomplish your purposes in us.
Be the joy and the strength of all
whose lives are bound in mutual love
and for those who live in celibacy.
Holy One, accomplish your purposes in us.
Grant your salvation to all who are far from home,
prisoners, exiles and victims of oppression.
Holy One, accomplish your purposes in us.
Show your kindness and mercy to all who are facing trials and difficulties,
to those who are sick and to those who are dying.
Holy One, accomplish your purposes in us.
Forgive our sins and set us free from all hardship,
distress, want, war and injustice.
Holy One, accomplish your purposes in us.
Guide us into new and just ways of sharing the goods of the earth,
so that we may live by the abundance of your mercies.
Holy One, accomplish your purposes in us.
Strengthen us in our struggle
against exploitation, greed and lack of concern,
so that we may find joy together.
Holy One, accomplish your purposes in us.
Unite us in love and service,
so that we may live in communion with all Christ’s saints.
Holy One, accomplish your purposes in us.

(Traditional chant: http://oremus.org/chant/LP-1940.mp3)

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 the wrong crowd,
sharing bread
with the unwanted and imperfect:
take our pious disdain,
fill us with new wine,
that we might be transformed
in body and in soul;
through Jesus Christ, the physician. Amen. PIC

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.

PWC PRAY WITHOUT CEASING: Morning and Evening Prayer for the Seasons of the Church Year Prepared by The Rev’d Dr Richard Geoffrey Leggett on behalf of The Liturgy Task Force of the Anglican Church of Canada, May 2016.

PIC Prayers for an Inclusive Church© 2008 Steven Shakespeare, Canterbury Press, Norwich.

The Lord’s Prayer is the traditional chant as set in The Hymnal 1940 and sung by Kathryn Mannyng https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YsJ2TB9pLbU

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 traditional language psalms are from The Book of Common Prayer (1662). Psalm 93 is in the version from Lutheran Service Book © Concordia Publishing House. Sung to LSB Tone A and sourced from here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=doYQAH0xA6k. Psalms 94 is in the version sung by Karl Kohlhase http://www.k4communications.com/karl/index.html.

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 © 2021 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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