Saturday morning November 21

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Opening response

Lord, open my lips
and my mouth will proclaim your praise.
All your faithful ones bless you
They make known 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.


Hail! Holy, Holy, Holy Lord

Charles Wesley
Hail! Holy, holy, holy Lord,
Whom one in three we know;
By all thy heavenly hosts adored,
By all thy church below.

One undivided Trinity
With triumph we proclaim;
Thy universe is full of thee,
And speaks thy glorious name.

Thee, Holy Father, we confess,
Thee, Holy Son, adore;
And thee, the Holy Ghost, we bless
And worship evermore.

Hail! Holy, holy, holy Lord,
This be our song to thee,
Supreme, essential one, adored
In co-eternal three!

Confession of sin

Let us admit to God the sin which always confronts us.

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

Almighty God,
patient and of great goodness:
I confess to you,
I confess with my whole heart
my neglect and forgetfulness of your commandments,
my wrong doing, thinking, and speaking;
the hurts I have done to others,
and the good I have left undone.
O God, forgive me, for I have sinned against you;
and raise me to newness of life;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. 

May the God of love and power
forgive us and free us from our sins,
heal and strengthen us by his Spirit,
and raise us to new life in Christ our Lord.

The Word of God

Psalm 78:1-39

Lord, how awesome are your works.

Listen, my people, to my teaching;
    tilt your ears toward the words of my mouth.
I will open my mouth with a proverb.
    I’ll declare riddles from days long gone—
        ones that we’ve heard and learned about,
        ones that our ancestors told us.
We won’t hide them from their descendants;
    we’ll tell the next generation
    all about the praise due the Lord and his strength—
    the wondrous works God has done.
He established a law for Jacob
    and set up Instruction for Israel,
        ordering our ancestors
        to teach them to their children.
This is so that the next generation
    and children not yet born will know these things,
        and so they can rise up and tell their children
    to put their hope in God—
        never forgetting God’s deeds,
        but keeping God’s commandments—
    and so that they won’t become like their ancestors:
    a rebellious, stubborn generation,
        a generation whose heart wasn’t set firm
        and whose spirit wasn’t faithful to God.
The children of Ephraim, armed with bows,
    retreated on the day of battle.
They didn’t keep God’s covenant;
    they refused to walk in his Instruction.
They forgot God’s deeds
    as well as the wondrous works he showed them.
But God performed wonders in their ancestors’ presence—
    in the land of Egypt, in the field of Zoan.
God split the sea and led them through,
    making the waters stand up like a wall.
God led them with the cloud by day;
    by the lightning all through the night.
God split rocks open in the wilderness,
    gave them plenty to drink—
    as if from the deep itself!
God made streams flow from the rock,
    made water run like rivers.
But they continued to sin against God,
    rebelling against the Most High in the desert.
They tested God in their hearts,
    demanded food for their stomachs.
They spoke against God!
    “Can God set a dinner table in the wilderness?” they asked.
“True, God struck the rock
    and water gushed and streams flowed,
        but can he give bread too?
        Can he provide meat for his people?”
When the Lord heard this, he became furious.
        A fire was ignited against Jacob;
    wrath also burned against Israel
        because they had no faith in God,
        because they didn’t trust his saving power.
God gave orders to the skies above,
    opened heaven’s doors,
    and rained manna on them so they could eat.
        He gave them the very grain of heaven!
Each person ate the bread of the powerful ones;
    God sent provisions to satisfy them.
God set the east wind moving across the skies
    and drove the south wind by his strength.
He rained meat on them as if it were dust in the air;
    he rained as many birds as the sand on the seashore!
God brought the birds down in the center of their camp,
    all around their dwellings.
So they ate and were completely satisfied;
    God gave them exactly what they had craved.
But they didn’t stop craving—
    even with the food still in their mouths!
So God’s anger came up against them:
    he killed the most hearty of them;
        he cut down Israel’s youth in their prime.
But in spite of all that, they kept sinning
    and had no faith in God’s wondrous works.
So God brought their days to an end,
    like a puff of air,
    and their years in total ruin.
But whenever God killed them, they went after him!
    They would turn and earnestly search for God.
They would remember that God was their rock,
    that the Most High was their redeemer.
But they were just flattering him with lip service.
    They were lying to him with their tongues.
Their hearts weren’t firmly set on him;
    they weren’t faithful to his covenant.
But God, being compassionate,
    kept forgiving their sins,
    kept avoiding destruction;
    he took back his anger so many times,
    wouldn’t stir up all his wrath!
God kept remembering that they were just flesh,
    just breath that passes and doesn’t come back.

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.

Lord, how awesome are your works.

Psalm prayer

God our deliverer,
as you led our ancestors through the wilderness,
so lead us through the wilderness of this world,
that we may be saved through Christ forever.

Old Testament reading
Isaiah 13:1-13

An oracle about Babylon, which Isaiah, Amoz’s son, saw.

On a bare mountain raise a signal;
    cry aloud to them;
    wave a hand;
    let them enter the officials’ gates.
I have commanded my holy ones;
    I have called my warriors,
    my proud, jubilant ones,
    to execute my wrath.
Listen! A roar on the mountains like that of a great crowd.
Listen! An uproar of kingdoms,
    of nations coming together.
The Lord of heavenly forces is mustering an army for battle.
They are coming from a distant land,
        from the faraway heavens,
    the Lord and the instruments of his fury, to destroy the whole land.
Wail, for the day of the Lord is near.
    Like destruction from the Almighty it will come.
Then all hands will fall limp;
    every human heart will melt,
    and they will be terrified.
Like a woman writhing in labor,
    they will be seized by spasms and agony.
They will look at each other aghast,
    their faces blazing.
Look, the day of the Lord is coming with cruel rage and burning anger,
    making the earth a ruin,
    and wiping out its sinners.
Heaven’s stars and constellations won’t show their light.
The sun will be dark when it rises;
    the moon will no longer shine.
I will bring disaster upon the world for its evil,
    and bring their own sin upon the wicked.
I will end the pride of the insolent,
    and the conceit of tyrants I will lay low.
I will make humans scarcer than fine gold;
    people rarer than the gold of Ophir.
I will rattle the heavens;
    the earth will shake loose from its place—because of the rage
    of the Lord of heavenly forces
        on the day his anger burns.

Silence may be kept.

New Testament reading
Matthew 9:1-17

Boarding a boat, Jesus crossed to the other side of the lake and went to his own city. People brought to him a man who was paralyzed, lying on a cot. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the man who was paralyzed, “Be encouraged, my child, your sins are forgiven.”

Some legal experts said among themselves, “This man is insulting God.”

But Jesus knew what they were thinking and said, “Why do you fill your minds with evil things? Which is easier—to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? But so you will know that the Human One has authority on the earth to forgive sins”—he said to the man who was paralyzed—“Get up, take your cot, and go home.” The man got up and went home. When the crowds saw what had happened, they were afraid and praised God, who had given such authority to human beings.

As Jesus continued on from there, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at a kiosk for collecting taxes. He said to him, “Follow me,” and he got up and followed him. As Jesus sat down to eat in Matthew’s house, many tax collectors and sinners joined Jesus and his disciples at the table.

But when the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?”

When Jesus heard it, he said, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor, but sick people do. Go and learn what this means: I want mercy and not sacrifice. I didn’t come to call righteous people, but sinners.”

At that time John’s disciples came and asked Jesus, “Why do we and the Pharisees frequently fast, but your disciples never fast?”

Jesus responded, “The wedding guests can’t mourn while the groom is still with them, can they? But the days will come when the groom will be taken away from them, and then they’ll fast.

“No one sews a piece of new, unshrunk cloth on old clothes because the patch tears away the cloth and makes a worse tear. No one pours new wine into old wineskins. If they did, the wineskins would burst, the wine would spill, and the wineskins would be ruined. Instead, people pour new wine into new wineskins so that both are kept safe.”

Silence may be kept.

Gospel canticle
The Benedictus (The Song of Zechariah)

God, you will guide us with your counsel, 
and afterwards receive us with glory.

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.

God, you will guide us with your counsel, 
and afterwards receive us with glory.

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


Loving God, we look to you.
Receive our prayer.

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.