Evening Prayer 2.23.17, St. Polycarp, Bishop of Smyrna & Martyr, 156

If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away; it is better for you to lose one of your members than for your whole body to be thrown into hell.

Overhead view of the Standing Rock campsite in North Dakota, officially closed yesterday by the governor after the Trump Administration indicated it would approve an environmental permit denied under President Obama. A few dozen protesters remained overnight, and ten were arrested, but the scene was mostly calm. Protesters burned their plywood buildings as a last show of defiance and a positive commemoration; they built a community here and led a nation. (Tom Stromme/The Bismarck Tribune)

Overhead view of the Standing Rock campsite in North Dakota, officially closed yesterday by the governor after the Trump Administration indicated it would approve an environmental permit denied under President Obama. A few dozen protesters remained overnight, and ten were arrested, but the scene was mostly calm. Protesters burned their plywood buildings as a last show of defiance and a positive commemoration; they built a community here, and led a nation. (Tom Stromme/The Bismarck Tribune)

I will bless the Lord who gives me counsel; my heart teaches me, night after night. I have set the Lord always before me; because God is at my right hand, I shall not fall. Psalm 16:7-8

INVITATORY AND PSALTER

O God, make speed to save us.
O Lord, make haste to help us.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

Hymn: Light of the World
Phos hilaron

Light of the world in grace and beauty,
Mirror of God’s eternal face,
Transparent flame of love’s free duty,
You bring salvation to our race.
Now, as we see the lights of evening,
We raise our voice in hymns of praise;
Worthy are you of endless blessing,
Sun of our night, lamp of our days.

Psalm 134

1  Behold now, bless the LORD, all you servants of the LORD, *
you that stand by night in the house of the LORD.
2  Lift up your hands in the holy place and bless the LORD; *
the LORD who made heaven and earth bless you out of Zion.

Psalm 135

1  Hallelujah!
Praise the Name of the LORD; *
give praise, you servants of the LORD.
2  You who stand in the house of the LORD, *
in the courts of the house of our God.
3  Praise the LORD, for the LORD is good; *
sing praises to the Name of God, for it is lovely.
4  For the LORD has chosen Jacob *
and taken Israel as a possession.
5  For I know that the LORD is great, *
and that our Lord is above all gods.
6  The LORD does whatever the LORD wills, in heaven and on earth, *
in the seas and all the deeps.
7  The LORD brings up rain clouds from the ends of the earth; *
sends out lightning with the rain,
and brings the winds out of heaven’s storehouse.
8  It was the LORD who struck down the firstborn of Egypt, *
the firstborn both of humans and beasts.
9  The LORD sent signs and wonders into the midst of you, O Egypt, *
against Pharaoh and all his servants.
10  The LORD overthrew many nations *
and put mighty rulers to death:
11  Sihon, king of the Amorites,
and Og, the kingdoms of Bashan, *
and all the realms of Canaan.
12  The LORD gave their land to be an inheritance, *
an inheritance for Israel, the chosen people.
13  O LORD, your Name is everlasting; *
your renown, O LORD, endures from age to age.
14  For you, O LORD, give your people justice *
and show compassion to your servants.
15  The idols of the heathen are silver and gold, *
the work of human hands.
16  They have mouths, but they cannot speak; *
eyes have they, but they cannot see.
17  They have ears, but they cannot hear; *
neither is there any breath in their mouth.
18  Those who make them are like them, *
and so are all who put their trust in them.
19  Bless the LORD, O house of Israel; *
O house of Aaron, bless the LORD.
20  Bless the LORD, O house of Levi; *
you who fear the LORD, bless the LORD.
21  Blessed be the LORD out of Zion, *
who dwells in Jerusalem.
Hallelujah!

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

We chose this work by Rembrandt, called Jesus Driving the Merchants from the Temple, to illustrate the following, entirely different story because of what they have in common, Jesus criticizing societal norms in a fairly extreme fashion. In the Temple he lashed out at a corrupt religious practice; in the following speech he aims his verbal fire at individuals. Today’s Christians tend to cheer the first story and cringe at the second – both reactions he may have had in mind. Collectively it’s our turn to be rebuked.

We chose this work by Rembrandt, called Jesus Driving the Merchants from the Temple, to illustrate the following, entirely different story because of what they have in common: Jesus criticizing societal norms in a fairly extreme fashion. In the Temple he lashed out at a corrupt religious practice; in the following speech he aims his verbal fire at individuals. Today’s Christians tend to cheer the first story and cringe at the second; collectively it’s our turn to be rebuked.

THE LESSON
Matthew 5:27-37 (NRSV)

Jesus said, “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away; it is better for you to lose one of your members than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away; it is better for you to lose one of your members than for your whole body to go into hell.

“It was also said, ‘Whoever divorces his wife, let him give her a certificate of divorce.’ But I say to you that anyone who divorces his wife, except on the ground of unchastity, causes her to commit adultery; and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.

“Again, you have heard that it was said to those of ancient times, ‘You shall not swear falsely, but carry out the vows you have made to the Lord.’ But I say to you, Do not swear at all, either by heaven, for it is the throne of God, or by the earth, for it is his footstool, or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great King. And do not swear by your head, for you cannot make one hair white or black. Let your word be ‘Yes, Yes’ or ‘No, No’; anything more than this comes from the evil one.”

Canticle: The Song of Mary
Luke 1:46-55

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,
my spirit rejoices in you, O God my Savior, *
for you have looked with favor on your lowly servant.
From this day all generations will call me blessed: *
you, the Almighty, have done great things for me,
and holy is your Name.
You have mercy on those who fear you *
from generation to generation.
You have shown strength with your arm, *
and scattered the proud in their conceit,
Casting down the mighty from their thrones, *
and lifting up the lowly.
You have filled the hungry with good things, *
and sent the rich away empty.
You have come to the help of your servant Israel, *
for you have remembered your promise of mercy,
The promise made to our forebears, *
to Abraham and his children for ever.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

THE APOSTLES’ CREED

I believe in God, the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.
I believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the power of 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,
he is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and he 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.

THE PRAYERS

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.
Save us from the time of trial, and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours, now and for ever. Amen.

Show us your mercy, O Lord;
And grant us your salvation.
Clothe your ministers with righteousness;
Let your people sing with joy.
Give peace, O Lord, in all the world;
For only in you can we live in safety.
Lord, keep this nation under your care;
And guide us in the way of justice and truth.
Let your way be known upon earth;
Your saving health among all nations.
Let not the needy, O Lord, be forgotten;
Nor the hope of the poor be taken away.
Create in us clean hearts, O God;
And sustain us by your Holy Spirit.

St. Polycarp learned about Jesus from St. John the Evangelist, who taught him and made him Bishop of Smyrna in present-day Turkey. Therefore any extant writing by Polycarp would be as faithful to the Gospel as it’s possible to get from someone who didn’t meet Jesus himself. And we do have Polycarp’s Letter to the Philippians, as documented by St. Irenaeus (d. 202), who was born in Smyrna and became Polycarp’s disciple. Thus through Irenaeus we have a direct link to the disciple Jesus loved, making Polycarp one of three “Apostolic Fathers” or most reliable witnesses in post-apostolic history. This is of essential importance to us today, all these centuries later; it is one thing to “believe what the Bible says,” but how do we know our Bible is authentic? Because Polycarp taught what John taught, and taught it to Irenaeus, who left a wealth of records. (omhksea.org)

St. Polycarp learned about Jesus from St. John the Evangelist, who taught him and made him Bishop of Smyrna in present-day Turkey. Therefore any extant writing by Polycarp is as faithful to the Gospel as it’s possible to get from someone who didn’t meet Jesus himself. We have Polycarp’s Letter to the Philippians, as documented by St. Irenaeus (d. 202), who was born in Smyrna and became Polycarp’s disciple. Thus we have a direct link to the disciple Jesus loved, making Polycarp one of three “Apostolic Fathers” or most reliable witnesses in post-apostolic history. This is of essential importance to us today; it is one thing to “believe what the Bible says,” but how do we know our Bible is authentic? Because Polycarp taught what John taught, and Polycarp taught it to Irenaeus, who left a wealth of records. (omhksea.org)

Collect of the Day: Polycarp, Bishop and Martyr of Smyrna, 156

O God, the maker of heaven and earth, you gave your venerable servant, the holy and gentle Polycarp, boldness to confess Jesus Christ as King and Saviour, and steadfastness to die for his faith: Give us grace, following his example, to share the cup of Christ and rise to eternal life; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

A Collect for the Presence of Christ

Lord Jesus, stay with us, for evening is at hand and the day is past; be our companion in the way, kindle our hearts, and awaken hope, that we may know you as you are revealed in Scripture and the breaking of bread. Grant this for the sake of your love. Amen.

Anglican Cycle of Prayer: Diocese of Makueni, Kenya

Thursday Evening Prayer List

For Sobriety & Recovery
Talmadge
Mark
Tyler

For Mental Health & Family Peace
Julie
Adam
Scotty

For Those with Addictions

O blessed Lord, you ministered to all who came to you: Look with compassion on all who through addiction have lost their health and freedom. Restore to them the assurance of your unfailing mercy; remove from them the fears that beset them; strengthen them in the work of their recovery; and to those who care for them, give patient understanding and persevering love. Amen.

For Those with Mental Illness
alt. Dinah Danby

O heavenly Father, we beseech you to have mercy upon all your children who are living with mental illness. Give them loving and supportive families and friends, and bless their caregivers with wisdom and compassion. Restore them to strength of mind and cheerfulness of spirit, and give them health and peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

For the Mission of the Church

Almighty God, you sent your Son Jesus Christ to reconcile the world to yourself: We praise and bless you for those whom you have sent in the power of the Spirit to preach the Gospel to all nations. We thank you that in all parts of the earth a community of love has been gathered together by their prayers and labors, and that in every place your servants call upon your Name; for the kingdom and the power and the glory are yours for ever. Amen.

Let us bless the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

Glory to God whose power, working in us, can do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine; Glory to him from generation to generation in the Church, and in Christ Jesus for ever and ever. Amen. Ephesians 3:20-21++

VIDEO: O bless the Lord, my soul (#411, St. Thomas (Williams), Aaron Williams; James Montgomery, para. Ps. 103:1-5) – Journeysongs Third Edition, 2012

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s