Week 47, Twenty-first Sunday after Pentecost

The canonical Scriptures of the Church represent the authoritative and true testimony of God’s narrative of history and life.

The Scriptures are both historical record and prophetic witness, and should be read as the script of God’s unfolding drama. Through the Prophets and Apostles God has provided his people with the clear and authoritative narration of his creative actions, his covenants with the Patriarchs, his call of the nation Israel, and the incarnation and saving actions of his Son, Jesus of Nazareth. In the overarching Story of God testified to in Scripture we come to see God’s action in his creation of his universe, his sovereign purpose to redeem his creation from the Curse, and his covenants to the patriarchs and Israel, and the Church.

~ Sacred Roots, pp. 78

Invocation: Our Prayer of Acclamation
Eternal God and Father, you are the God of the truth, of the Holy Scriptures, which record and declare your works in the sending of your Son. The Bible is the script of your unfolding drama, and through your servants, the prophets and apostles, you have given us a clear and authoritative account of how you created all things and determined to rescue your people through your Son, Jesus of Nazareth. Open up our hearts to hear the word of your apostles, to cling to their word, and so believe in Christ your Son for salvation and hope. In his name we pray, amen.

Call to Worship
Blessed are you, O God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. And blessed is your Kingdom, both now and forever, amen.

Te Deum Laudamus 
You are God: we praise you; you are the Lord; we acclaim you; you are the eternal Father: All creation worships you. To you all angels, all the powers of heaven, Cherubim and Seraphim, sing in endless praise: Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might, heaven and earth are full of your glory.

The glorious company of apostles praise you. The noble fellowship of prophets praise you. The white-robed army of martyrs praise you. Throughout the world the holy Church acclaims you; Father, of majesty unbounded, your true and only Son, worthy of all worship, and the Holy Spirit, advocate and guide.

You, Christ, are the king of glory, the eternal Son of the Father. When you became man to set us free you did not shun the Virgin’s womb. You overcame the sting of death and opened the kingdom of heaven to all believers. You are seated at God’s right hand in glory. We believe that you will come and be our judge. Come then, Lord, and help your people, bought with the price of your own blood, and bring us with your saints to glory everlasting.

Praise and Thanksgiving (songs and prayers)

Gloria Patri
Glory be to the Father,
And to the Son and to the Holy Spirit:
As it was in the beginning,
Is now, and ever shall be,
World without end. Amen, amen.

Chronological Reading for the Day
Sunday: 1 Cor. 4-7

Lectionary Readings
Psalm: Ps. 91.9-16
OT: Isa. 53.4-12
Gospel: Mark 10.35-45
NT: Heb. 5.1-10

(Click here for all readings)
Reflection: Silence and/or Journaling

The Apostles’ Creed
I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth; and 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, dead, and buried; he descended into hell; the third day he arose again from the dead; he ascended into heaven and sits on the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence he shall come to judge the quick 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.

*In the Apostles’ and Nicene Creeds, the term catholic refers to the Church’s universality, through all ages and times, of all languages and peoples. It refers to no particular tradition or denominational expression (e.g., as in Roman Catholic).

Prayers of Confession
Let us now confess our sins to God and receive mercy and grace to help in our time of need.

Assurance of Pardon
Having faithfully confessed and renounced your sin, Christ also has been faithful to forgive your sins and to purify you from all unrighteousness. It is certain, that there is One who has spoken to the Father in your defense, Jesus Christ, the Righteous One who is the atoning sacrifice for our sins and for the sins of the whole world. His grace and peace are with you now. Amen.

Petitions and Supplications, Ending with The Lord’s Prayer
Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.

~ Matthew 6.9-13 (KJV)

Doxology (and/or closing song)
Praise God from whom all blessings flow;
Praise Him all creatures here below;
Praise Him above ye heavenly host;
Praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost. Amen.

Benediction 
Lord Jesus, you chose your apostles to be with you, to preach your Gospel, and to demonstrate your authority over the enemy. These humble folk accompanied you throughout your ministry, saw your Passion, and were eyewitnesses of your resurrection glory. Because of what they confessed and bore witness to about your glory, we have believed, and so we have been saved. Thank you for their faithful witness and true testimony. Through them we have come to understand the true narration of the world. Glory to your name. Amen!

Pray without Ceasing – Flash Prayer for the Day
We have not followed carefully devised made-up tales, but the eye-witness testimony of the Apostles.

Weekly Reflection on the Sovereign Love of God
In summary, then, by the end of the second century the church had an authoritative source and an authoritative substance of what she believed and taught. The authoritative source was the apostles. They had received their message from Christ and passed it on in the church. Consequently, both the oral and written traditions of the apostles that they had transmitted to the church, and which the church had received and guarded and passed on were authoritative. In this sense, the Scriptures, both the Old Testament and what had been by that time recognized
by the church (the four Gospels and the Pauline Epistles), was the authoritative source, which had been handed down by the apostles.

~ Robert E. Webber and David Neff.
Common Roots: The Original Call to an Ancient-Future Faith
Elec. Edition, location 2536.

Let God Arise! Seasonal Focus
Your Word Is Truth: Divine Inspiration: The Word of God,
2 Peter 1.20-21

Book Reading
Heine, Classical Christian Doctrine