5 August 2015
Prayers developed from the daily readings
Wednesday 5 August 2015
Psalms 82 and 84
The first psalm sets a scene of God judging all the other Gods. They lack knowledge or compassion. They will be destroyed. The psalmist petitions God alone to judge the earth.
A day living in the presence of God is better than anything imaginable. A journey to God’s dwelling place is filled with refreshment: “they go from strength to strength” (v. 7).
2 Samuel 15: 7 - 23
Absalom asks David for permission to go and worship at Hebron. David grants this. Unknown to David, Absalom takes 200 men and has arranged that at the sound of a trumpet people in all the tribes are to shout that Absalom is king. David decides to flee Jerusalem to protect the city from bloodshed. He leaves some of his concubines.
Ittai, the Gittite is a recent arrival in Jerusalem. David tells him to remain but Ittai is loyal to David and with his family follows David into the wilderness. All the people weep as they leave Jerusalem.
John 11: 38 – 54
Jesus comes to Lazarus’s tomb and asks for help to open it. Martha warns him of the stench. Jesus reminds her that he had just said, if she believed she would see the glory of God. Jesus prays aloud so that all understand God is doing this not Jesus. He calls Lazarus who comes out. Jesus instructs them to free Lazarus from the wrappings.
The Jews who witness Lazarus’s restoration believe in Jesus and spread the news. The Pharisees and chief priests are aware of a potential backlash from the Roman occupation forces. Caiaphas says that it is better for one person to die for the nation than for everyone to be destroyed and Caiaphas prophesies that Jesus’s death would not only be for the nation but all the children of God. Jesus knows the risks and goes north towards the wilderness.
Collect for Morning Prayer
Near Broken Hill
Almighty God you are the one true God of compassion and grace. You alone are eternal. You alone have power over death. You are with us, whether we are fleeing oppression or threat. Hold us in your calm embrace so that our hearts may feel your strength and your refreshment through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord. Amen.
Wednesday 5 August 2015
Psalms 85 and 87
The first psalm reminds us all of God’s forgiveness and historical evidence of restoring people of faith. The psalmist asks for quiet to listen to God who will speak peace to the faithful and give salvation. “Steadfast love and faithfulness will meet; righteousness and peace will kiss each other” (v.10).
The second psalm is of praise for Zion, the mother city of believers everywhere. It is the basis for the hymn “Glorious things of you are spoken, Zion city of our God.”
Baruch 2: 19 – 3: 8
The prayer of repentance continues with the people acknowledging that all that Moses said would have if the people did not obey has indeed happened. They are small in number, in exile and scattered. They accept that they have bee “stiff-necked people”. As the ancient writings indicate they will repent in exile and ask to be restored and God will restore them. They ask God to forgive their actions and remember the promises to their ancestors. They begin to praise God while still in exile. They accept their current situation.
Romans 8: 1 – 8
For those who are in Christ there is no condemnation. Those who live according to the Spirit, who set their minds on the things of the Spirit, will have life and peace. Those who set their minds on selfish concerns – on their needs and achievements will find only death.
Collect for Evening Prayer
|Church in a desert town|
Silverton NSW 2003 L Osburn
Holy and merciful God you keep on loving us and saving us and restoring us. Keep our hearts and minds focused on you so that our spirit seeks your life and your peace and we cannot help but sing your praise with love and thanksgiving all our days through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord and Saviour. Amen.
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