Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost, Proper 22
The Season after Pentecost is likewise the season before Advent – it is a season of the blessed hope. As we declare Jesus’ return in every communion celebration, so we confess that he will assuredly appear in power and glory to complete God’s salvation for the world. He will come in power to rescue his own, to make an end of war and sin, and to restore creation under God’s will.
This Week’s Theme
THE JUST SHALL LIVE BY FAITH: ESTHER
With the plot to kill all the Jews of the empire at the hands of Haman about to be birthed, Esther understood well what the stakes were in her inadvertent crashing the audience of the king. If he failed to welcome her into his presence, she could lose her life. Mordecai was convinced that God would act on the behalf of the Jewish people, even if she did not intervene. But he reassured her that God’s entire intent in making her queen could have been this moment of intercession. Esther resolved to carry out Mordecai’s plan, even if it meant her death. She merely asked Mordecai to fast for three days, and she and her maids would do the same – and if she perished, she would perish. Her intercession led to the salvation of her people, all because of the courage of her conviction, and willingness to lose all for the sake of others.
God of Mordecai and Esther, God who calls us to great sacrifice on behalf of your people, grant us the courage and confidence to represent your Kingdom well, to risk our very lives for the salvation of others, and to trust you to intervene for our sake as we place ourselves in harm’s way for the deliverance of the vulnerable. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Call to Worship
Blessed are you, O God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. And blessed is your Kingdom, both now and forever, Amen.
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)
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.
Sun, Oct. 7: Mark 15.42-16.11; Matt. 27.57-28.15; Luke 23.50-24.12; John 19.38-20.18
Mon, Oct. 8: Luke 24.13-49; Mark 16.12-18; John 20.19-21.25; Matt. 28.16-20
Tue, Oct. 9: Mark 16.19-20; Luke 24.50-53; Acts 1-2
Wed, Oct. 10: Acts 3-5
Thu, Oct. 11: Acts 6.1-8.1a
Fri, Oct. 12: Acts 8.1b-9.43
Sat, Oct. 13: Acts 10-12
(ESV online reading guide for the Daily Reading)
Psalm: Ps. 26
OT: Job 1.1; 2.1-10
Gospel: Mark 10.2-16
NT: Heb. 1.1-4; 2.5-12
Reflection: Silence and/or Journaling
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.
God of our help and hope, you are the God who did not leave queen Esther alone and without aid when she went in to see the king uninvited, but gave her favor and blessing in his sight, that your people might be delivered. Enable us to share the spirit of Esther, that valiant and courageous spirit that entrusts itself to you as we stand for others, for indeed, this is also the spirit of Christ who gave himself for us. In Christ’s name, amen.
Affirmation from the Psalms
O LORD my God, in you do I take refuge; save me from all my pursuers and deliver me, lest like a lion they tear my soul apart, rending it in pieces, with none to deliver.
~ Psalm 7.1-2
Pray without Ceasing - Flash Prayer for the Day
Lord, give me grace to stand up to evil, as Queen Esther did – whom you blessed with the saving of her people, and the exposure and defeat of your enemies.
Let God Arise! Seasonal Focus
The Just Shall Live by Faith: Mary and Gabriel, Luke 1.26-38, 46-55
Davis, Sacred Roots