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Intercessions for Trinity +6 (Proper 10) Year B – 12 July 2015


by Benjamin Haas via Shutterstock

The Collect

Merciful God, you have prepared for those who love you such good things as pass our understanding: pour into our hearts such love toward you that we, loving you in all things and above all things, may obtain your promises, which exceed all that we can desire; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

¶ The Liturgy of the Word

First Reading: 2 Samuel 6.1-5,12b-19

David again gathered all the chosen men of Israel, thirty thousand. David and all the people with him set out and went from Baale-judah, to bring up from there the ark of God, which is called by the name of the Lord of hosts who is enthroned on the cherubim. They carried the ark of God on a new cart, and brought it out of the house of Abinadab, which was on the hill. Uzzah and Ahio, the sons of Abinadab, were driving the new cart with the ark of God; and Ahio went in front of the ark. David and all the house of Israel were dancing before the Lord with all their might, with songs and lyres and harps and tambourines and castanets and cymbals. So David went and brought up the ark of God from the house of Obed-edom to the city of David with rejoicing; and when those who bore the ark of the Lord had gone six paces, he sacrificed an ox and a fatling. David danced before the Lord with all his might; David was girded with a linen ephod. So David and all the house of Israel brought up the ark of the Lord with shouting, and with the sound of the trumpet. As the ark of the Lord came into the city of David, Michal daughter of Saul looked out of the window, and saw King David leaping and dancing before the Lord; and she despised him in her heart. They brought in the ark of the Lord, and set it in its place, inside the tent that David had pitched for it; and David offered burnt offerings and offerings of well-being before the Lord. When David had finished offering the burnt offerings and the offerings of well-being, he blessed the people in the name of the Lord of hosts, and distributed food among all the people, the whole multitude of Israel, both men and women, to each a cake of bread, a portion of meat, and a cake of raisins. Then all the people went back to their homes.

Psalm 24

Refrain: The Lord of hosts: he is the King of glory.

The earth is the Lord’s and all that fills it, * the compass of the world and all who dwell therein.
For he has founded it upon the seas * and set it firm upon the rivers of the deep. R
‘Who shall ascend the hill of the Lord, * or who can rise up in his holy place?’
‘Those who have clean hands and a pure heart, * who have not lifted up their soul to an idol, nor sworn an oath to a lie;
‘They shall receive a blessing from the Lord, * a just reward from the God of their salvation.’
Such is the company of those who seek him, * of those who seek your face, O God of Jacob. R
Lift up your heads, O gates; be lifted up, you everlasting doors; *and the King of glory shall come in.
‘Who is the King of glory?’ * ‘The Lord, strong and mighty, the Lord who is mighty in battle.’
Lift up your heads, O gates; be lifted up, you everlasting doors; *and the King of glory shall come in.
‘Who is this King of glory?’ * ‘The Lord of hosts, he is the King of glory.’

Refrain: The Lord of hosts: he is the King of glory.

O Lord of hosts,
purify our hearts
that the King of glory may come in,
your Son, Jesus our redeemer.

Second Reading: Ephesians 1.3-14

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, just as he chose us in Christ before the foundation of the world to be holy and blameless before him in love. He destined us for adoption as his children through Jesus Christ, according to the good pleasure of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace that he freely bestowed on us in the Beloved. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses according to the riches of his grace that he lavished on us. With all wisdom and insight he has made known to us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure that he set forth in Christ, as a plan for the fullness of time, to gather up all things in Christ, things in heaven and things on earth. In Christ we have also obtained an inheritance, having been destined according to the purpose of him who accomplishes all things according to his counsel and will, so that we, who were the first to set our hope on Christ, might live for the praise of his glory. In him you also, when you had heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and had believed in him, were marked with the seal of the promised Holy Spirit; this is the pledge of our inheritance towards redemption as God’s own people to the praise of his glory.

Gospel Reading: Mark 6.14-29

King Herod heard of the healings and other miracles, for Jesus’ name had become known. Some were saying, ‘John the baptizer has been raised from the dead; and for this reason these powers are at work in him.’ But others said, ‘It is Elijah.’ And others said, ‘It is a prophet, like one of the prophets of old.’ But when Herod heard of it, he said, ‘John, whom I beheaded, has been raised.’  For Herod himself had sent men who arrested John, bound him, and put him in prison on account of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife, because Herod had married her. For John had been telling Herod, ‘It is not lawful for you to have your brother’s wife.’ And Herodias had a grudge against him, and wanted to kill him. But she could not, for Herod feared John, knowing that he was a righteous and holy man, and he protected him. When he heard him, he was greatly perplexed; and yet he liked to listen to him. But an opportunity came when Herod on his birthday gave a banquet for his courtiers and officers and for the leaders of Galilee. When his daughter Herodias came in and danced, she pleased Herod and his guests; and the king said to the girl, ‘Ask me for whatever you wish, and I will give it.’ And he solemnly swore to her, ‘Whatever you ask me, I will give you, even half of my kingdom.’ She went out and said to her mother, ‘What should I ask for?’ She replied, ‘The head of John the Baptist.’ Immediately she rushed back to the king and requested, ‘I want you to give me at once the head of John the Baptizer on a platter.’ The king was deeply grieved; yet out of regard for his oaths and for the guests, he did not want to refuse her. Immediately the king sent a soldier of the guard with orders to bring John’s head. He went and beheaded him in the prison, brought his head on a platter, and gave it to the girl. Then the girl gave it to her mother. When his disciples heard about it, they came and took his body, and laid it in a tomb.

Jane Williams’ commentary for today (pp 88-89) is good (search ‘cosmic’)

‘Christianity is not, at its heart, about living a good and decent life. It is about living the life we were created for, in tune with the God who made us. That is why Christians are right to agonize over the way our lives bear witness to the God we seek and serve…We are designed to be part of the ceaseless flow of love between Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Christians, then, live as people who know God’s plan for the world. We know that God has made us to be part of his glorious life and love. ..To praise and glorify God, and to live in the truthful knowledge of the overriding purposes of God, will not necessarily make our lives easy.”

Prayers of Intercession

¶The Church of Christ

Lord, set on fire the hearts of all those that worship you! We come before you in beautiful surroundings, some of great antiquity, which speak to us of hundreds of years of continuous praise and give us a sense of permanence,  always there, always changeless. But we know in our heart of hearts that the ‘abiding city’ **  is not here but in the life to come. In the here and now, you ask us to blaze with your love so that the whole world may catch fire with your joy.

For you are the king of glory, O Lord: in your mercy, hear our prayer

¶Creation, human society, the Sovereign and those in authority

For the night skies opening outwards, star upon star, expanse after expanse, thanks be to you, O Lord. For the mystery of your presence in and beyond all that can be seen, thanks be to you. * For the music of the spheres, for the cosmic dance in which you invite us to join with King David, thanks be to you. For your grace, which shows us your glory even in the foothills of faith, thanks be to you.

For you are the king of glory, O Lord: in your mercy, hear our prayer

¶The local community

Lord, we thank you for all those who speak out on behalf of the communities to which they belong. Bless all those we live amongst and grant that we may truly behave like members one of another, supporting the weak and helping the afflicted while rejoicing in the shared reflection of that joy we know from our fellowship with you.

For you are the king of glory, O Lord: in your mercy, hear our prayer

¶Those who suffer

Lord of life, we ask for the gift of courage: bind us in the fellowship of those who take the cup of necessary suffering, and drink from it. Hear the prayer of those who cry out in pain and those who cry out in fear; those who cry out in grief and those who cry out in despair; those who cry out to you to forgive because they can not; and those whose cries are inward and unheard. Pour upon their wounds the healing balm of your mercy.

For you are the king of glory, O Lord: in your mercy, hear our prayer

¶The communion of saints

Lord, inspire us with the courage and fidelity of John the Baptist. We pray for all those who at this time are facing persecution and death because of their Christian faith. Bring all those who have died to the joy of your heavenly kingdom, and comfort those who mourn their passing.

Merciful Father, accept these prayers…

The illustration at the head of this piece perhaps needs some explanation. I was looking for something which would remind us of the glory of God (the theme of most of the readings), with our only possible response being worship and adoration. But I also wanted to hint at the danger such adoration may lead us into – as C S Lewis famously said, Aslan ‘is not a tame lion, you know’.

*based on Celtic Benediction, J. Philip Newell

** For here have we no abiding city, but we seek one to come. Hebrews 13:14

Prayer after Communion

God of our pilgrimage,
you have led us to the living water:
refresh and sustain us
as we go forward on our journey,
in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Copyright acknowledgement (where not already indicated above): Post Communion (6th after Trinity) © 1985 Anglican Church of Canada: The Book of Alternative Services Some material included in this service is copyright: © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ, USA Some material included in this service is copyright: © The Archbishops’ Council 2000 Collect (6th after Trinity, Short) © The Archbishops’ Council 2005

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