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Intercessions for Trinity +18 – Year B – Proper 22 – 4 October 2015 – series 2


Image ID: 229857658 Copyright: CHOAT via shuterstock

The Collect

Almighty and everlasting God, increase in us your gift of faith that, forsaking what lies behind and reaching out to that which is before, we may run the way of your commandments and win the crown of everlasting joy; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and  reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

¶ The Liturgy of the Word

First Reading: Job 1.1; 2.1-10

There was once a man in the land of Uz whose name was Job. That man was blameless and upright, one who feared God and turned away from evil. One day the heavenly beings came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them to present himself before the Lord. The Lord said to Satan, ‘Where have you come from?’ Satan answered the Lord, ‘From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking up and down on it.’The Lord said to Satan, ‘Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man who fears God and turns away from evil. He still persists in his integrity, although you incited me against him, to destroy him for no reason.’ Then Satan answered the Lord, ‘Skin for skin! All that people have they will give to save their lives. But stretch out your hand now and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will curse you to your face.’ The Lord said to Satan, ‘Very well, he is in your power; only spare his life.’ So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord, and inflicted loathsome sores on Job from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head. Job took a potsherd with which to scrape himself, and sat among the ashes. Then his wife said to him, ‘Do you still persist in your integrity? Curse God, and die.’ But he said to her, ‘You speak as any foolish woman would speak. Shall we receive the good at the hand of God, and not receive the bad?’ In all this Job did not sin with his lips.

Psalm 26

Refrain: Lord, I love the place where your glory abides.

Give judgement for me, O Lord, for I have walked with integrity; * I have trusted in the Lord and have not faltered.
Test me, O Lord, and try me; * examine my heart and my mind.
For your love is before my eyes; * I have walked in your truth.
I have not joined the company of the false, * nor consorted with the deceitful. R
I hate the gathering of evildoers * and I will not sit down with the wicked.
I will wash my hands in innocence, O Lord, * that I may go about your altar,
To make heard the voice of thanksgiving * and tell of all your wonderful deeds.
Lord, I love the house of your habitation * and the place where your glory abides. R
Sweep me not away with sinners, * nor my life with the bloodthirsty,
Whose hands are full of wicked schemes * and their right hand full of bribes.
As for me, I will walk with integrity; * redeem me, Lord, and be merciful to me.
My foot stands firm; * in the great congregation I will bless the Lord.

Refrain: Lord, I love the place where your glory abides.

Have mercy on us and redeem us, O Lord,
for our merits are your mercies
and in your judgement is our salvation;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Second Reading: Hebrews 1.1-4; 2.5-12

Long ago God spoke to our ancestors in many and various ways by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by a Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, through whom he also created the worlds. He is the reflection of God’s glory and the exact imprint of God’s very being, and he sustains all things by his powerful word. When he had made purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs. Now God did not subject the coming world, about which we are speaking, to angels. But someone has testified somewhere, ‘What are human beings that you are mindful of them, or mortals, that you care for them? You have made them for a little while lower than the angels; you have crowned them with glory and honour, subjecting all things under their feet.’ Now in subjecting all things to them, God left nothing outside their control. As it is, we do not yet see everything in subjection to them, but we do see Jesus, who for a little while was made lower than the angels, now crowned with glory and honour because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.  It was fitting that God, for whom and through whom all things exist, in bringing many children to glory, should make the pioneer of their salvation perfect through sufferings. For the one who sanctifies and those who are sanctified all have one Father. For this reason Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters, saying, ‘I will proclaim your name to my brothers and sisters, in the midst of the congregation I will praise you.’

Gospel Reading: Mark 10.2-16

Some Pharisees came, and to test Jesus they asked, ‘Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?’ He answered them, ‘What did Moses command you?’ They said, ‘Moses allowed a man to write a certificate of dismissal and to divorce her.’ But Jesus said to them, ‘Because of your hardness of heart he wrote this commandment for you. But from the beginning of creation, “God made them male and female.” “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.’ Then in the house the disciples asked him again about this matter. Jesus said to them, ‘Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her; and if she divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery.’ People were bringing little children to him in order that he might touch them; and the disciples spoke sternly to them. But when Jesus saw this, he was indignant and said to them, ‘Let the little children come to me; do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs. Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it.’ And he took them up in his arms, laid his hands on them, and blessed them.

Prayers of Intercession

¶The Church of Christ

Lord, we love the silent presence in the places of prayer. There we see glimpses of your glory shine, and your light is reflected in the faces of those who trust you, and the lives of the quietly faithful. With your grace, we shall walk with integrity: with your compassion, our feet shall stand firm. *

Lord, help us to find again the simplicity and clarity of childhood: in your mercy, hear our prayer.

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

But Lord, we are reminded not to be too easy with evil, both with our own and with those near and far. We pray for the enemy, both in others and in ourselves, the one who whispers the lie and imprisons the tellers of truth. Forgive us our laziness and our fears, our stupidity and our turning aside. Shed on us, we pray, the painful healing beams of the light of Christ, the living truth.

Lord, help us to find again the simplicity and clarity of childhood: in your mercy, hear our prayer.

¶The local community

Lord, we pray for the many communities that we are involved in: our families, our schools, our colleagues at work and our neighbours at home, as well as our country and those in the wider community of nations. May we contribute to the achievements and the harmony of all these circles, both through our own efforts and the support of others.

Lord, help us to find again the simplicity and clarity of childhood: in your mercy, hear our prayer.

¶Those who suffer

Lord, we bring before you all those who suffer in body, mind or spirit. We pray for all those who find the complexities of life, and its vicissitudes, too difficult to bear. We pray for those with chronic diseases, as well as those who have been surprised by the sudden onset of pain. May they all feel the reality of your living and loving presence amongst them.

Lord, help us to find again the simplicity and clarity of childhood: in your mercy, hear our prayer.

¶The communion of saints

Lord, as you gather to yourself  the children of your Kingdom, we remember those who have recently died……………

May they join the heavenly choirs of cherubim and seraphim as they continuously sing your praise!

Merciful Father, accept these prayers…….


Prayer after Communion

We praise and thank you, O Christ, for this sacred feast:
for here we receive you,
here the memory of your passion is renewed,
here our minds are filled with grace,
and here a pledge of future glory is given,
when we shall feast at that table where you reign
with all your saints for ever.

The intercessions I wrote in the first series are gradually maturing, you may be pleased to hear! Here is what I offered for this Sunday in 2012.  I still think I can improve on them, but I like my introduction:

Today’s lectionary is an example of why it is a good idea to read it well in advance and then forget about it, hoping your subconscious will work out what the theme is. When I read this last Sunday, I could see no link. Today I can see such a link, though it is in some places a gossamer thread rather than a metal chain! The collect is one of my favourites, and the passage from Job is all about the torments inflicted on him by Satan, which failed to make him curse God [and lose his faith]. The psalm is on the theme ‘I have trusted in the Lord and not faltered’ (v.1). The epistle is more complicated, and introduces the note of glory also in the psalm, but  contains the summary of our faith: For the one who sanctifies and those who are sanctified all have one Father (v.11). And the gospel includes: whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it. (v.16)

If you prefer Jane Williams’ musings on the lectionary to mine (and you would be right), you can read them here (searching ‘speculate’ will take you to p.112).


*Based on Jim Cotter’s meditation on Psalm 26

Copyright acknowledgement (where not already indicated above): Post Communion (18th after Trinity) © 1973 ICEL: Roman Missal (English Translation) 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

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