Wednesday morning November 18

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Opening response

Lord, open my lips
and my mouth will proclaim your praise.
All your faithful ones bless you
They speak of the glory of your kingdom.

Prayer of thanksgiving

Blessed are you, Sovereign God,
ruler and judge of all,
to you be praise and glory forever.
In the darkness of this age that is passing away
may the light of your presence which the saints enjoy
surround our steps as we journey on.
May we reflect your glory this day
and so be made ready to see your face
in the heavenly city where night shall be no more.
Blessed be God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Blessed be God forever.


But, Above All, Lay Hold

Charles Wesley
But, above all, lay hold
On faith's victorious shield;
Armed with that adamant and gold,
Be sure to win the field:
If faith surround your heart,
Satan shall be subdued,
Repelled his every fiery dart,
And quenched with Jesus’ blood.

Jesus hath died for you!
What can his love withstand?
Believe, hold fast your shield, and who
Shall pluck you from his hand?
Believe that Jesus reigns,
All power to him is given;
Believe, till freed from sin's remains,
Believe yourselves to heaven!

To keep your armor bright,
Attend with constant care,
Still walking in your Captain's sight,
And watching unto prayer.
Ready for all alarms,
Steadfastly set your face,
And always exercise your arms,
And use your every grace.

Pray, without ceasing pray,
Your Captain gives the word;
His summons cheerfully obey,
And call upon the Lord;
To God your every want
In instant prayer display;
Pray always; pray, and never faint;
Pray, without ceasing pray!

Confession of sin

When we cry out to the Lord in our distress,
he will save us from our desperate circumstances.

God will bring us out of darkness
and out of the shadow of death.

Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy.

A time of silence and self-examination may be kept.

May the Father forgive us
by the death of his Son
and strengthen us
to live in the power of the Spirit
all our days.

Let us thank the Lord for his faithful love,
and his wondrous works for all people.

Let us offer thanksgiving sacrifices
and declare what God has done in songs of joy.

cf Psalm 107

The Word of God

Psalm 56

I trust in God; I won’t be afraid.

God, have mercy on me because I’m being trampled.
    All day long the enemy oppresses me.
My attackers trample me all day long
    because I have so many enemies.
Exalted one, whenever I’m afraid,
    I put my trust in you—
        in God, whose word I praise.
        I trust in God; I won’t be afraid.
    What can mere flesh do to me?
All day long they frustrate my pursuits;
    all their thoughts are evil against me.
They get together and set an ambush—
    they are watching my steps,
    hoping for my death.
Don’t rescue them for any reason!
    In wrath bring down the people, God!
You yourself have kept track of my misery.
    Put my tears into your bottle—
    aren’t they on your scroll already?
Then my enemies will retreat when I cry out.
    I know this because God is mine.
    God: whose word I praise.
        The Lord: whose word I praise.
I trust in God; I won’t be afraid.
    What can anyone do to me?
I will fulfill my promises to you, God.
    I will present thanksgiving offerings to you
    because you have saved my life from death,
    saved my feet from stumbling
        so that I can walk before God in the light of life.

Glory 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.

I trust in God; I won’t be afraid.

Psalm prayer

Faithful God,
your deliverance is nearer than we know;
free us from fear
and help us to find courage in your Word,
in Jesus Christ our Lord.

Psalm 57

Have mercy on me, God;
    have mercy on me
    because I have taken refuge in you.
    I take refuge
    in the shadow of your wings
        until destruction passes by.
I call out to God Most High—
    to God, who comes through for me.
He sends orders from heaven and saves me,
    rebukes the one who tramples me.
        God sends his loyal love and faithfulness.
My life is in the middle of a pack of lions.
    I lie down among those who devour humans.
        Their teeth are spears and arrows;
        their tongues are sharpened swords.
Exalt yourself, God, higher than heaven!
    Let your glory be over all the earth!
They laid a net for my feet to bring me down;
    they dug a pit for me,
    but they fell into it instead!
My heart is unwavering, God—
    my heart is unwavering.
I will sing and make music.
    Wake up, my glory!
    Wake up, harp and lyre!
    I will wake the dawn itself!
I will give thanks to you,
my Lord,
    among all the peoples;
I will make music to you among the nations
    because your faithful love
        is as high as heaven;
    your faithfulness reaches the clouds.
Exalt yourself, God, higher than heaven!
    Let your glory be over all the earth!

Glory 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 prayer

Tender God,
gentle protector in time of trouble,
pierce the gloom of despair
and give us, with all your people,
the song of freedom and the shout of praise;
in Jesus Christ our Lord.

Old Testament reading
Isaiah 10:20-32

On that day, what’s left of Israel and the survivors of the house of Jacob will no longer depend on the one who beat them. Instead, they will faithfully depend on the Lord, the holy one of Israel. A few will return, what’s left of Jacob, to the mighty God. Although your people, Israel, were like the sand of the sea, only a few survivors will return. The end is announced, overflowing with justice. Yes, destruction has been announced; the Lord God of heavenly forces will carry it out against the entire land.

Therefore, the Lord God of heavenly forces says: My people who live in Zion, don’t fear Assyria, which strikes you with the rod and raises its staff against you as Egypt did. In a very short time my fury will end, and my anger at the world will be finished.

Therefore, the Lord of heavenly forces will crack a whip against Assyria,
    as when he struck Midian at the rock of Oreb.
    He will raise a rod over the sea,
        as he did in Egypt.
On that day, God will remove the burden from your shoulder
    and destroy the yoke on your neck.
The exalted laid low
He has gone up from Samaria,
    come against Aiath,
    passed to Migron.
At Michmash he stored his equipment.
They crossed at the pass: “We’ll camp at Geba!”
    Ramah trembles; Gibeah of Saul has fled.
Cry aloud, Daughter Gallim!
    Listen, Laishah! Answer her, Anathoth!
Madmenah has flown.
    Gebim’s inhabitants sought refuge.
This very day he will stand at Nob
    and shake his fist at Daughter Zion’s mountain,
    the hill of Jerusalem!

Silence may be kept.

New Testament reading
Matthew 8:1-13

Now when Jesus had come down from the mountain, large crowds followed him. A man with a skin disease came, kneeled before him, and said, “Lord, if you want, you can make me clean.”

Jesus reached out his hand and touched him, saying, “I do want to. Become clean.” Instantly his skin disease was cleansed. Jesus said to him, “Don’t say anything to anyone. Instead, go and show yourself to the priest and offer the gift that Moses commanded. This will be a testimony to them.”

When Jesus went to Capernaum, a centurion approached, pleading with him, “Lord, my servant is flat on his back at home, paralyzed, and his suffering is awful.”

Jesus responded, “I’ll come and heal him.”

But the centurion replied, “Lord, I don’t deserve to have you come under my roof. Just say the word and my servant will be healed. I’m a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes, and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and the servant does it.”

When Jesus heard this, he was impressed and said to the people following him, “I say to you with all seriousness that even in Israel I haven’t found faith like this. I say to you that there are many who will come from east and west and sit down to eat with Abraham and Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. But the children of the kingdom will be thrown outside into the darkness. People there will be weeping and grinding their teeth.” Jesus said to the centurion, “Go; it will be done for you just as you have believed.” And his servant was healed that very moment.

Silence may be kept.

Gospel canticle
The Benedictus (The Song of Zechariah)

They were faithful even to the point of death
and God has given them the crown of life.

Bless the Lord God of Israel
because he has come to help and has delivered his people.
He has raised up a mighty savior for us in his servant David’s house,
just as he said through the mouths of his holy prophets long ago.
He has brought salvation from our enemies
and from the power of all those who hate us.
He has shown the mercy promised to our ancestors,
and remembered his holy covenant,
the solemn pledge he made to our ancestor Abraham.
He has granted that we would be rescued
from the power of our enemies
so that we could serve him without fear,
in holiness and righteousness in God’s eyes,
for as long as we live.
You, child, will be called a prophet of the Most High,
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way.
You will tell his people how to be saved
through the forgiveness of their sins.
Because of our God’s deep compassion,
the dawn from heaven will break upon us,
to give light to those who are sitting in darkness
and in the shadow of death,
to guide us on the path of peace.”

Luke 1:68-79

Glory 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.

They were faithful even to the point of death
and God has given them the crown of life.

The Apostle’s Creed

Let us unite in this historic confession of the Christian faith: 

I believe in God, the Father Almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and will come again to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen.


Intercession and thanksgiving

Prayers are offered
for the day and its tasks
for the world and its needs
for the Church and her life


In faith we pray
We pray to you our God.

Silence may be kept.

Collect of the day

Heavenly Father,
whose blessed Son was revealed
to destroy the works of the devil
and to make us the children of God and heirs of eternal life:
grant that we, having this hope,
may purify ourselves even as he is pure;
that when he shall appear in power and great glory
we may be made like him in his eternal and glorious kingdom;
where he is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.

The Lord’s Prayer

Uniting our prayers with the whole company of heaven,
as our Savior taught us, so we pray

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.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation
but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power,
and the glory are yours
now and forever.



May Christ, who has opened the kingdom of heaven,
bring us to reign with him in glory.