1 Kings 2:10-12; 3:3-14
David dies and Solomon takes over as king. Then God allows him to ask for anything he wants, and he requests wisdom to rule over God’s people well. God is pleased with his request and grants him wisdom, but also promises him wealth and fame and, if he stays faithful to God, long life.
A Psalm in praise of God’s works which are glorious, righteous, just, merciful, compassionate and trustworthy. God has redeemed God’s people and established an everlasting covenant with them, and wisdom is found in the fear of God and in keeping God’s laws.
Rev Joan Stott writes: Professor Walter Brueggemann writes that v 4 of the psalm reminds us that “…The name, reputation, or memory of YHWH crafted in those wondrous deeds is of one who is ‘gracious and merciful’…. ‘Merciful’ comes from the term suggesting the womb love of the mother who has given birth to the children of Israel…” That understanding of ‘merciful’ gives the word ‘mercy’ a whole new meaning and context; and another example of God’s love.
(Source: Professor Walter Brueggemann & William H Bellinger Junior from “Psalms” – Psalm 111, page 483, © 2014 Cambridge University Press)
Paul encourages the Ephesian Christians to live wisely and in the power of God’s Spirit that fills them, and to encourage one another through songs and through worship and thanksgiving to God.
Jesus continues proclaiming that he is the Bread of Life, inviting the people to eat his flesh and drink his blood as true food and drink. Those who do this will live, he promises, unlike those who died even after eating the bread in the wilderness.
(Bible reading summaries by John van de Laar, Sacredise)
COCU52B.Readings – handout (landscape, folded format)
Church of Scotland Starters for Sunday
Singing from the Lectionary
Components of worship
Acknowledgement of Land
Prayer of thanksgiving
Prayers of thankfulness and trust (Psalm 111)
God, Father of the fatherless, we come today to worship your Holy Name. As we
come together as one family under God, we individually say: “I will thank the Lord
with all my heart, as I meet with his godly people…” We give thanks for the support
and encouragement we receive from our fellow pilgrims in the faith; and we pray for
each one of them; that they may be blessed through the fellowship of shared worship.
We give thanks that we are continually challenged to be faithful in our worship, our
witness, and in our service; and that although it is often not an easy responsibility – that it is one that that enlivens our faith and invigorates our trust in our Father God.
God, Mother of the motherless, we come today to praise and thank you. As we come
together in the common bond of being a beloved child of our God, whose motherly care
and nurturing has so blessed us over the years; so we celebrate: “…How amazing are
the deeds of the Lord..!” Many of us have fond memories of our own mothers; and
from our own experiences, we praise God for the maternal depths of God’s amazing
generosity; and God’s loving compassion and tender care over all things and all peoples.
God, Parent and Guardian of orphans, refugees and stateless peoples, we come today
to share in the fellowship of the people of God; the One who liberates us all. Today,
we give thanks for the God, who is our Parent and Guardian of all the people God has
adopted into the family of faith, hope and trust in the One who is eternally and forever
God. “…Everything he does reveals his glory and majesty…. All God does is just…and
all God’s commandments are trustworthy…gracious and merciful is our Lord!…” Hallelujah! Amen.
(Source: Joan Stott, The Timeless Psalms)
Prayer of Invocation
We follow you, Jesus,
today as we worship;
In words of love and devotion
sung and spoken,
In service and kindness,
in shared life and sacred meal.
And all we need do to follow you
as we leave this place
is to continue saying and doing
– to others –
what we bring to you in this hour.
And so we pray for praise and affirmation
to empower our families and communities;
For confession and forgiveness
to reconcile personal and national enemies,
and lead us into integrity and goodness;
For thanksgiving and generosity
to curb our greed,
and overcome poverty;
For intercession and compassion
to heal the broken,
defend the weak,
and guide the powerful.
As you feed us now, Jesus, in our worship,
may we become, again, your body
which nourishes the world,
and embraces all people with kindness. Amen.
(Source: John van de Laar, Sacredise)
Prayers of Approach
Call to Prayer
At its best, prayer is gentle communion with the Sacred: it is an opportunity to enter more deeply into the present moment, to step aside from the busyness and distractions of life, to bring our attention to the centre of ourselves, to the place where the Holy dwells in each of us.
Prayer of Adoration, Confession, Absolution, and Supplication
Let us pray.
Mystery at the centre of all life, Spirit saturating the material,
Sacred Presence, elusive, hidden, Eternal Now,
encountered in darkness and dreams, in moments of emptiness and joy,
in the warmth of friendship and tenderness of intimacy,
in faith shared and Scripture read,
in the stillness of the soul,
we gaze upon You.
Father, Mother, Lover, Triune God:
You are all in all;
our wholeness and protection;
You are everything to us.
By your invitation of grace,
we lay down before you
the burdens we carry,
the suffering we endure,
the issues with which we wrestle, and
the memories of past wrongs, hurts, shame and failures.
May we know the touch of Your hand, O Christ.
We confess our wrongs:
our craving for earthly things,
our insatiable need for worldly status, power and wealth,
our words of malice and meanness,
our shallow thoughts, and
our pretence that we are better than we are.
Hear the words of Jesus: ‘Go, and sin no more.’
May Almighty God have mercy upon you,
grant you pardon and remission of all your sins,
time for the amendment of life,
and the grace and comfort of the Holy Spirit.
We are made for heaven,
for life with the Risen, ascended Christ,
for fellowship with all the saints.
Bearers of the Divine image,
nourish us, Holy God,
with the peace and calm your Silence.
May the darkness that envelops the universe be to us a comfort,
a reminder that all things rest in you,
that we are at home in you,
and that you make your dwelling-place in us.
(Source: Scott McKenna, Church of Scotland Starters for Sunday) Continue reading