3 January 2015
Prayers developed from the daily readings
Saturday 3 January 2015
This psalm is a song of thanks and praise for the demise of past enemies and the eternal presence of God. The Lord is the security for oppressed people and that means individuals too. The psalmist moves to a prayer for individual help. The psalm ends asking God to “let the nations know that they are only human” (v.20).
Isaiah 33: 1 – 16
The treacherous one who destroys will be dealt with treacherously and destroyed. The people appeal to God to be gracious, their protection and salvation. Isaiah talks of past actions of God and that Zion will be filled with justice, righteousness and stability. The fear of the Lord is Zion’s treasure.
In tough times, that is when God will be exulted. Those who live righteously will live on in the heights with all their needs assured.
John 3: 22 – 36
Jesus and John (the Baptist) are baptizing people close by each other. John’s disciples come to him concerned that people are going to Jesus. John says, no one can receive anything unless it is given by heaven. He reinforces that he, John, is not the Messiah but the one sent ahead. John compares himself to a best man and Jesus the bridegroom John rejoices in Jesus who must increase and John must decrease.
John says the one who comes from heaven is above all and speaks of heavenly things. People will not understand. Those who accept Jesus’s testimony certify that God is true. The one sent by God speaks God’s words with God’s Spirit. God loves Jesus ad has put all things in his hands and whoever believes in Jesus has eternal life.
Collect for Morning Prayer
NSW 2014 L Osburn
Holy Lord you gave us your Son Jesus so that we can know your word and receive eternal life. As we encounter the challenges of today, be with us, remind us of all Jesus said and did for us so that we may rejoice, exult and praise you through Jesus Christ Your Son our Lord. Amen.
Saturday 3 January 2015
The psalm begins describing how arrogant wicked people are: how they think God does not see them and that they can get away with anything. But God does see. God will hear the meek and give them strength and provide justice for the orphan and oppressed so that people on earth will “strike terror no more” (v.18).
Isaiah asks God to come down, to make the earth shake, terrify adversaries and be revealed to all. There is only one God who listens to prayer and acts. But the people did not listen and God turned away. No one dares call on God. Isaiah asks how long will the people be punished; all they have including the temple is in ruins.
Ephesians 2: 11 – 22
The people who are not Jews have been brought in to the covenants of promise and to a world with God through Jesus. Christ is our peace. Jews and people from other nations are now together. The Law its commandments and ordinances are abolished so that there is one humanity reconciled to God through Jesus. Jesus proclaims peace to all. We are no longer strangers but citizens in God’s house built on the foundation of the prophets and with Christ as the cornerstone. In Christ the whole structure is joined together as a holy dwelling place for God.
Collect for Evening Prayer
Victoria 2014 L Osburn
Holy and wonderful Lord, you have come down not to terrify but to love us, to bring us peace beyond our dreams and unity for all people in and through you. We thank you and ask that in our reflection tonight that you help us recall the times we exercised your covenant of promise and shared your love with others through Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour. Amen.