2 November 2014
Prayers developed from the daily readings
Sunday 2 November 2014
Psalm 94: 1 – 15
The psalmist calls people to remember that God does can and will act for the righteous. We are all reminded that nothing is hidden from God who formed all ears, all types of eyes. Will God not be able to see or hear what we are up to?
1 Thessalonians 2: 17 – 3: 6
Paul expresses how fond he is of the Thessalonians and his pride in their belief and commitment. He wanted to visit and was prevented so sent Timothy. Paul was worried that the persecutions may have dampened their resolve. Timothy has returned and given Paul the good news of their faith and love. They remember Paul kindly.
Collect for Morning Prayer
Armadale WA 2014 L Osburn
Sunday 2 November 2014
Joshua 4: 1 – 19
The priests are carrying the ark and are in the middle of the Jordan River which has dried up to allow the people to cross. Joshua calls one representative for each of the 12 tribes. He instructs them to take a stone each from the riverbed near the priests. They make a cairn to mark the place where God held the waters back so that the people may cross. When the people crossed the priests carry the ark to the bank and the river flows again and overflows its banks.
Here the psalmist is ill and unable to travel to the temple.
Illness was thought to be evidence of separation from God. The psalmist asks that someone see that he is not unworthy and take him to the temple where he will praise God with exceeding joy. “Hope in God for I shall again praise him, my help and my God” (v.5).
Matthew 23: 13 - 26
Jesus indicts the Pharisees who have confused themselves and others and by the confusion are making it harder for people to get to God. The gold artefacts in the sanctuary are not what make the place holy or an oath real. The sanctuary does that. Similarly the gift on the altar isn’t as important as the altar it is on. It is the altar, the sanctuary and God’s throne, heaven: the place God dwells, and more importantly God’s dwelling there, that makes the oath real.
Equally the Pharisees tithe stuff – herbs and spices – but forget to tithe justice, mercy and faith. Jesus accuses them of straining a gnat but swallowing a camel. He demands we clean up our inner life before worrying about outward appearances.
Collect for Evening Prayer
Mandurah WA 2014 L Osburn
Holy and Lord of wonders and grace you are the eternal power and might and love and compassion. Help us discern where you are and free ourselves from confusion and error. Help us too to tithe not only material goods but also justice, mercy and faith so that we do your will, open your path to others and live lives that praise you with exceeding joy through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.