Oremus for Sunday, August 29, 2021

The Pharisees Question Jesus, James Tissot, 1886-94

Antiphon1

Ant. Lord, I will be mindful of your justice alone; *
you have taught me, O God, from my youth; and so,
unto old age and gray hairs, O God, forsake me not.
V. In you, O Lord, I take refuge; *
let me never be put to shame.
In your justice, rescue me, free me; *
incline your ear to me and save me. Psalm 71

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: Thomas H Troeger ©
Tune: Inner Light 

1 As a chalice cast of gold,
burnished, bright and brimmed with wine,
make me, Lord, as fit to hold
grace and truth and love divine.
Let my praise and worship start
with the cleansing of my heart.

2 Save me from the soothing sin
of the empty cultic deed
and the pious, babbling din
of the claimed but unlived creed.
Let my actions, Lord, express
what my tongue and lips profess.

3 When I bend upon my knees,
clasp my hands, or bow my head,
let my spoken, public pleas
be directly, simply said,
free of tangled words that mask
what my soul would plainly ask.

4 When I dance or chant your praise,
when I sing a psalm or hymn,
when I preach your loving ways,
let my heart add its Amen.
Let each cherished outward rite
thus reflect your inward light.

PSALMS

Psalm 142 (Anglican Chant: https://tinyurl.com/ya9l4yc4)
1  I cried unto the Lord with my voice *
 yea, even unto the Lord did I make my supplication.
2  I poured out my complaints before him *
 and shewed him of my trouble.
3  When my spirit was in heaviness thou knewest my path *
 in the way wherein I walked have they privily laid a snare for me.
4  I looked also upon my right hand *
 and saw there was no man that would know me.
5  I had no place to flee unto *
 and no man cared for my soul.
6  I cried unto thee, O Lord, and said *
 Thou art my hope, and my portion in the land of the living.
7  Consider my complaint *
 for I am brought very low.
8  O deliver me from my persecutors *
 for they are too strong for me.
9  Bring my soul out of prison,
that I may give thanks unto thy Name *
 which thing if thou wilt grant me,
then shall the righteous resort unto my company.
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 142 (Plainsong: http://oremus.org/chant/Psalm-142-1.mp3)
1 I cry to the LORD with my voice; *
to the LORD I make loud supplication.
2 I pour out my complaint before him *
and tell him all my trouble.
3 When my spirit languishes within me, you know my path; *
in the way wherein I walk they have hidden a trap for me.
4 I look to my right hand and find no one who knows me; *
I have no place to flee to, and no one cares for me.
5 I cry out to you, O LORD; *
I say, “You are my refuge,
my portion in the land of the living.”
6 Listen to my cry for help, for I have been brought very low; *
save me from those who pursue me,
for they are too strong for me.
7 Bring me out of prison, that I may give thanks to your Name; *
when you have dealt bountifully with me,
the righteous will gather around me.

Psalm 143 (Anglican Chant: https://tinyurl.com/y76nm8vs)
1  Hear my prayer, O Lord, and consider my desire *
 hearken unto me for thy truth and righteousness’ sake.
2  And enter not into judgement with thy servant *
 for in thy sight shall no man living be justified.
3  For the enemy hath persecuted my soul;
he hath smitten my life down to the ground *
 he hath laid me in the darkness, as the men that have been long dead.
4  Therefore is my spirit vexed within me *
 and my heart within me is desolate.
5  Yet do I remember the time past; I muse upon all thy works *
 yea, I exercise myself in the works of thy hands.
6  I stretch forth my hands unto thee *
 my soul gaspeth unto thee as a thirsty land.
7  Hear me, O Lord, and that soon, for my spirit waxeth faint *
 hide not thy face from me,
lest I be like unto them that go down into the pit.
8  O let me hear thy loving-kindness betimes in the morning,
for in thee is my trust *
 shew thou me the way that I should walk in,
for I lift up my soul unto thee.
9  Deliver me, O Lord, from mine enemies *
 for I flee unto thee to hide me.
10  Teach me to do the thing that pleaseth thee, for thou art my God *
 let thy loving Spirit lead me forth into the land of righteousness.
11  Quicken me, O Lord, for thy Name’s sake *
 and for thy righteousness’ sake bring my soul out of trouble.
12  And of thy goodness slay mine enemies *
 and destroy all them that vex my soul; for I am thy servant.
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 143 (Plainsong: http://oremus.org/chant/Psalm-143.mp3)
1 LORD, hear my prayer,
and in your faithfulness heed my supplications; *
answer me in your righteousness.
2 Enter not into judgment with your servant, *
for in your sight shall no one living be justified.
3 For my enemy has sought my life;
he has crushed me to the ground; *
he has made me live in dark places like those who are long dead.
4 My spirit faints within me; *
my heart within me is desolate.
5 I remember the time past; I muse upon all your deeds; *
I consider the works of your hands.
6 I spread out my hands to you; *
my soul gasps to you like a thirsty land.
7 O LORD, make haste to answer me; my spirit fails me; *
do not hide your face from me
or I shall be like those who go down to the Pit.
8 Let me hear of your loving-kindness in the morning,
for I put my trust in you; *
show me the road that I must walk, for I lift up my soul to you.
9 Deliver me from my enemies, O LORD, *
for I flee to you for refuge.
10 Teach me to do what pleases you, for you are my God; *
let your good Spirit lead me on level ground.
11 Revive me, O LORD, for your Name’s sake; *
for your righteousness’ sake, bring me out of trouble.
12 Of your goodness, destroy my enemies
and bring all my foes to naught, *
for truly I am your servant.

PRAYER

God our refuge,
when all friends have forsaken us
and enemies line all our paths,
come quickly to our aid.
Lead us out from captivity
into the light of your freedom,
secured for us in the sacrifice
of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. BCW

THE WORD OF GOD

Reading: Deuteronomy 4:1-14

So now, Israel, give heed to the statutes and ordinances that I am teaching you to observe, so that you may live to enter and occupy the land that the Lord, the God of your ancestors, is giving you. You must neither add anything to what I command you nor take away anything from it, but keep the commandments of the Lord your God with which I am charging you. You have seen for yourselves what the Lord did with regard to the Baal of Peor—how the Lord your God destroyed from among you everyone who followed the Baal of Peor, while those of you who held fast to the Lord your God are all alive today.

See, just as the Lord my God has charged me, I now teach you statutes and ordinances for you to observe in the land that you are about to enter and occupy. You must observe them diligently, for this will show your wisdom and discernment to the peoples, who, when they hear all these statutes, will say, ‘Surely this great nation is a wise and discerning people!’ For what other great nation has a god so near to it as the Lord our God is whenever we call to him? And what other great nation has statutes and ordinances as just as this entire law that I am setting before you today?

But take care and watch yourselves closely, so as neither to forget the things that your eyes have seen nor to let them slip from your mind all the days of your life; make them known to your children and your children’s children— how you once stood before the Lord your God at Horeb, when the Lord said to me, ‘Assemble the people for me, and I will let them hear my words, so that they may learn to fear me as long as they live on the earth, and may teach their children to do so’; you approached and stood at the foot of the mountain while the mountain was blazing up to the very heavens, shrouded in dark clouds. Then the Lord spoke to you out of the fire. You heard the sound of words but saw no form; there was only a voice. He declared to you his covenant, which he charged you to observe, that is, the ten commandments; and he wrote them on two stone tablets. And the Lord charged me at that time to teach you statutes and ordinances for you to observe in the land that you are about to cross into and occupy.

HYMN: Psalm 15; para. Christopher L Webber ©
Tune: Crimond https://tinyurl.com/4spnxc4n

1 Lord, who may dwell within Your house
Or on Your holy hill?
Those who do good and speak the truth,
Whose lives are blameless still;

2 Who have no guile upon their tongues
Nor harm their neighbor’s life,
But honor those who fear the Lord
And turn away from strife.

3 Who do no wrong, but keep their word
And seek no bribe or gain,
All those who do such things shall live
And safe from harm remain.

Reading: James 1:17-27

Every generous act of giving, with every perfect gift, is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. In fulfilment of his own purpose he gave us birth by the word of truth, so that we would become a kind of first fruits of his creatures.

You must understand this, my beloved: let everyone be quick to listen, slow to speak, slow to anger; for your anger does not produce God’s righteousness. Therefore rid yourselves of all sordidness and rank growth of wickedness, and welcome with meekness the implanted word that has the power to save your souls.

But be doers of the word, and not merely hearers who deceive themselves. For if any are hearers of the word and not doers, they are like those who look at themselves in a mirror; for they look at themselves and, on going away, immediately forget what they were like. But those who look into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and persevere, being not hearers who forget but doers who act—they will be blessed in their doing.

If any think they are religious, and do not bridle their tongues but deceive their hearts, their religion is worthless. Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to care for orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world.

HYMN: Matthias Claudius; trans. Jane M Campbell
Tune: Wir pflügen https://tinyurl.com/55trraup

1 We plough the fields, and scatter
the good seed on the land,
but it is fed and watered
by God’s almighty hand:
he sends the snow in winter,
the warmth to swell the grain,
the breezes, and the sunshine,
and soft, refreshing rain.
Refrain:
All good gifts around us
are sent from heaven above;
then thank the Lord, O thank the Lord,
for all his love.

2 He only is the maker
of all things near and far;
he paints the wayside flower,
he lights the evening star;
the winds and waves obey him,
by him the birds are fed;
much more to us, his children,
he gives our daily bread. [Refrain]

3 We thank thee then, O Father,
for all things bright and good,
the seed-time and the harvest,
our life, our health, our food.
Accept the gifts we offer
for all thy love imparts,
and, what thou most desirest,
our humble, thankful hearts. [Refrain]

Mark 7:1-23

Now when the Pharisees and some of the scribes who had come from Jerusalem gathered around him, they noticed that some of his disciples were eating with defiled hands, that is, without washing them. (For the Pharisees, and all the Jews, do not eat unless they thoroughly wash their hands, thus observing the tradition of the elders; and they do not eat anything from the market unless they wash it; and there are also many other traditions that they observe, the washing of cups, pots, and bronze kettles.) So the Pharisees and the scribes asked him, ‘Why do your disciples not live according to the tradition of the elders, but eat with defiled hands?’ He said to them, ‘Isaiah prophesied rightly about you hypocrites, as it is written,
“This people honours me with their lips,
   but their hearts are far from me;
in vain do they worship me,
   teaching human precepts as doctrines.”
You abandon the commandment of God and hold to human tradition.’

Then he said to them, ‘You have a fine way of rejecting the commandment of God in order to keep your tradition! For Moses said, “Honour your father and your mother”; and, “Whoever speaks evil of father or mother must surely die.” But you say that if anyone tells father or mother, “Whatever support you might have had from me is Corban” (that is, an offering to God)— then you no longer permit doing anything for a father or mother, thus making void the word of God through your tradition that you have handed on. And you do many things like this.’

Then he called the crowd again and said to them, ‘Listen to me, all of you, and understand: there is nothing outside a person that by going in can defile, but the things that come out are what defile.’

When he had left the crowd and entered the house, his disciples asked him about the parable. He said to them, ‘Then do you also fail to understand? Do you not see that whatever goes into a person from outside cannot defile, since it enters, not the heart but the stomach, and goes out into the sewer?’ (Thus he declared all foods clean.) And he said, ‘It is what comes out of a person that defiles. For it is from within, from the human heart, that evil intentions come: fornication, theft, murder, adultery, avarice, wickedness, deceit, licentiousness, envy, slander, pride, folly. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person.’

CANTICLE Exodus 15
(John Schiavone: https://tinyurl.com/ybknobsb)

Ant. I will sing to the Lord; he has covered himself in glory.

I will sing to the Lord, for he is gloriously triumphant;
horse and chariot he has cast into the sea.
My strength and my courage is the LORD,
and he has been my savior.
He is my God, I praise him;
the God of my father, I extol him. Ant.

The Lord is a warrior, LORD is his name!
Pharaoh’s chariots and army he hurled into the sea;
the elite of his officers were submerged in the Red Sea. Ant.

The flood waters covered them,
they sank into the depths like a stone.
Your right hand, O Lord, magnificent in power,
your right hand, O Lord, has shattered the enemy. Ant.

You brought in the people you redeemed
and planted them on the mountain of your inheritance—
the place where you made your seat, O Lord,
the sanctuary, Lord, which your hands established.
The Lord shall reign forever and ever. Ant.

THE PRAYERS Joe Milner

For the Church: that we may experience an ever deeper conversion of mind and heart as we allow God’s Word to instruct and free us

For a deepening of gratitude: that we may be grateful to God for every blessing and gift, and develop them fully for God’s glory

For the gift of spiritual freedom: that God will liberate us from the defenses of legalism and rationalism so that we may serve God wherever God calls us

For wisdom: that God will teach us how to live the virtues of the Christian life and manifest them in new ways in our contemporary society

For a greater knowledge of ourselves: that God will help us discern our motivations and make life-giving choices each day

For all who hand on the faith, particularly preachers, teachers, and parents: that they may share the faith clearly and convincingly, and lead others into an experience of God’s great love

For conversion from our hypocrisies: that we may recognize where we say one thing and live by another so that we may come to greater integrity and wholeness

For all who have experienced the evil of human hearts: that God will heal the pain of those who have experienced abuse, discrimination, or human trafficking and fill them with hope for the future

For all who have suffered from cover-ups or neglect by church leaders: that God will comfort and guide them, help their truth to be heard, and guide us in supporting them

For all who are suffering from natural disasters and for those assisting them: that God will calm the wildfires, help the people of Hait to recover, and sustain all who are helping them

For refugees and displaced persons, particularly those fleeing Afghanistan: that God will guide them to safety, protect them on their journeys, and help them find welcome in new communities

For greater respect for and stewardship of earth’s resources: that we may treasure the natural resources that God has given us and wisely use them for the good of the human family

For an end to the pandemic: that God will curtail the surge in the Covid virus, send healing to all who are ill, and give strength and courage to all medical personnel

For safety in schools: that God will watch over all schools, protect students from the Covid virus, violence, and bullying, and help all to grow in knowledge and self-awareness

For peace: that the Spirit will renew the dedication of those working for peace and help all to work together to defeat the common enemies of disease, ignorance, and poverty

Setting by Eric Wyse:2

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your Name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread;
and forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial
and deliver us from evil.

For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours,
now and for ever. Amen.

O Father of lights,
from whose word of truth
we have been born as firstfruits of your creatures:
make us quick to listen and slow to speak,
that the word implanted in us
may take root to nourish all our living,
and that we may be blessed in our doing and fruitful in action. Amen. RCLP

https://tinyurl.com/rkxkpmc
Go in peace, alleluia, alleluia!
Thanks be to God, alleluia, alleluia!

Glory to God whose power, working in us,
can do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine:
Glory to him from generation to generation in the Church,
and in Christ Jesus for ever and ever. Amen.    Ephesians 3:20,21


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.

2 Eric Wyse, Lord’s Prayer, ©; audio from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-_a40ME7aVk

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

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

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). The modern language versions are from The Book of Common Prayer (1979) and are sung by Ryland Angel.

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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