TWENTY THIRD SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST 5TH NOVEMBER 2023

What Does 1 Thessalonians 2:12 Mean?

OPENING SENTENCE
Give thanks to the Lord for his mercy

HYMN

GREETING

Grace and peace to you from God our Father

and the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen

COLLECT FOR PURITY

Almighty God

to whom all hearts be open

all desires known

and from whom no secrets are hidden;

Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts

by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit,

that we may perfectly love you

and worthily magnify your holy name

through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

SUMMARY OF THE LAW

Our Lord Jesus Christ said: The first commandment is this: “Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is the only Lord. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength.”

The second is this: “Love your neighbour as yourself.” There is no other commandment greater than these. Amen. Lord, have mercy.

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CONFESSION

God is love and we are God’s children.

There is no room for fear in love.

We love because God loved us first.

Let us confess our sins in penitence and faith.

God our Father, we confess to you

and to our fellow members in the Body of Christ

that we have sinned in thought, word and deed,

and in what we have failed to do.

We are truly sorry.

Forgive us our sins,

and deliver us from the power of evil,

for the sake of your Son who died for us, Jesus Christ, our Lord.

ABSOLUTION

May the God of love and power

forgive you and free you from your sins,

heal and strengthen you by his Spirit

and raise you to new life in Christ our Lord. Amen.

GLORIA
sung by Dougie Byers

COLLECT

O Lord,
watch over your household with constant love
that, with you as our shelter,
your family may be free from all distress
and devoted to good works:
for the glory of your name;
through Jesus Christ, our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, world without end. Amen

FIRST READING
Joshua 3:7-17
read by Annette Beagrie

The Lord said to Joshua, “This day I will begin to exalt you in the sight of all Israel, so that they may know that I will be with you as I was with Moses. You are the one who shall command the priests who bear the ark of the covenant, ‘When you come to the edge of the waters of the Jordan, you shall stand still in the Jordan.” 

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Joshua then said to the Israelites, “Draw near and hear the words of the Lord your God.” Joshua said, “By this you shall know that among you is the living God who without fail will drive out from before you the Canaanites, Hittites, Hivites, Perizzites, Girgashites, Amorites, and Jebusites: the ark of the covenant of the Lord of all the earth is going to pass before you into the Jordan. So now select twelve men from the tribes of Israel, one from each tribe. When the soles of the feet of the priests who bear the ark of the Lord, the Lord of all the earth, come to rest in the waters of the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan flowing from above shall be cut off; they shall stand in a single heap.”

When the people set out from their tents to cross over the Jordan, the priests bearing the ark of the covenant were in front of the people. Now the Jordan overflows all its banks throughout the time of harvest. So when those who bore the ark had come to the Jordan and the feet of the priests bearing the ark were dipped in the edge of the water, the waters flowing from above stood still, rising up in a single heap far off at Adam, the city that is beside Zarethan, while those flowing toward the sea of the Arabah, the Dead Sea, were wholly cut off. Then the people crossed over opposite Jericho. While all Israel were crossing over on dry ground, the priests who bore the ark of the covenant of the Lord stood firmly on dry ground in the middle of the Jordan, until the entire nation finished crossing over the Jordan.

SECOND READING
1 Thessalonians 2:9-13
read by David Kerr

You remember our labour and toil, brothers, and sisters; we worked night and day so that we might not burden any of you while we proclaimed to you the gospel of God. You are witnesses, and God also, how pure, upright, and blameless our conduct was toward you believers. As you know, we dealt with each one of you like a father with his children, urging and encouraging you and pleading that you lead a life worthy of God, who calls you into his own kingdom and glory.

We also constantly give thanks to God for this, that when you received the word of God that you heard from us you accepted it not as a human word but as what it really is, God’s word, which is also at work in you believers.

Daily Bible Reading Devotional [1 Thessalonians 2:9-13] November 9, 2016 –  Dust Off The Bible

HYMN

GOSPEL READING
Matthew 23: 1-12
read by Rev Janice Aiton

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to St Matthew chapter 23 beginning at verse 1

Glory to Christ our Saviour.

Jesus Denounces Scribes and Pharisees

Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, “The scribes and the Pharisees sit on Moses’s seat; therefore, do whatever they teach you and follow it, but do not do as they do, for they do not practice what they teach. They tie up heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on the shoulders of others, but they themselves are unwilling to lift a finger to move them. They do all their deeds to be seen by others, for they make their phylacteries broad and their fringes long. They love to have the place of honour at banquets and the best seats in the synagogues and to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces and to have people call them

Matthew 23:1-12 | God's Cure for Hypocrisy | Matthew Dodd - YouTube

rabbi. But you are not to be called rabbi, for you have one teacher, and you are all brothers and sisters. And call no one your father on earth, for you have one Father, the one in heaven. Nor are you to be called instructors, for you have one instructor, the Messiah. The greatest among you will be your servant. All who exalt themselves will be humbled, and all who humble themselves will be exalted.

Give thanks to the Lord for his glorious gospel

Praise to Christ our Lord

SERMON

The right perspective makes the impossible possible. Stay positive. |  Staying positive, Positivity, Perspective

Have you ever found that you have got the wrong end of the stick? You have completely misunderstood what was said and so end up totally confused. You have managed to get the completely wrong perspective. A student writes to her mom and dad about perspective. Here is her letter:

Dear Mom and Dad,

It has now been three months since I left for college. I am sorry for my thoughtlessness in not having written before. I will bring you up to date but before you read on you had better sit down. Okay? I am getting along pretty well now. The skull fracture and concussion I got when I jumped out of my apartment window when it caught fire after my arrival here is pretty well healed. I only spent two weeks in the hospital and now I can see almost normally and only get these sick headaches once a day. Fortunately the fire and my jump were witnessed by Roger an attendant at the gas station, and he was the one who called the fire department. He also visited me in the hospital, and since I had nowhere to live he was kind enough to invite me to share his apartment with him. He is a very fine man, and we are planning to get married. We haven’t set the date yet, but it will be before my pregnancy begins to show. His divorce is final now, and he shares custody of his 3 children. Now that I have brought you up to date I want to tell you that there was no fire, I did not have a concussion or skull fracture, I was not in the hospital, I am not pregnant, I am not engaged, and there is no divorced man in my life. However, I am getting a “D” in Art and an “F” in Biology and I wanted you to see these marks in the proper perspective.

Your loving daughter,

Jane

The Bermuda Triangle of Stress | The Right Perspective - YouTube

In the letter Jane is hoping that her parents will have the right perspective on her situation. In our letter from Paul to the Thessalonians Paul too is hoping that the people of Thessalonica will get the right perspective, they seem to have the wrong perspective of him and are accusing him of being a false preacher- simply out to gain as much money as he could. Paul is at pains to rectify their wrong picture of him and restore the true perspective. Paul speaks of his commitment to the people of Thessalonica.

He varied his plan according to local situations. In the case of Thessalonica, it seems that he did not rely on patrons for his food and lodging, nor did he charge the listeners for his messages, as did some philosophers. Indeed, Paul is adamant that he and his companions did not receive any payment from the Thessalonians. In contrast, he reminds them that “we worked night and day, so that we might not burden any of you while we proclaimed to you the gospel of God”

1 Thessalonians 2:9 Surely you recall, brothers, our labor and toil. We  worked night and day so that we would not be a burden to anyone while we  proclaimed to you the

The particular combination of words Paul uses here – “labour” and “toil” – stresses the exhaustion involved and indicates Paul’s self-sufficiency through paid work.

Paul’s actions went beyond mere self-sufficiency. He discusses his conduct among the Thessalonians as a group, and he uses three adverbs here to indicate his typical way of behaving, rather than his character. He describes his behaviour among them as holy, righteous and blameless. Thus, he and his companions demonstrated a quality of action among the Thessalonian believers that make obvious their underlying integrity. So, Paul’s commitment to the Thessalonians was genuine, He had a heart for the people of Thessalonica. His motives were pure. His commitment to them was heart- felt and total.

His commitment is matched with his compassion for the Thessalonians. He speaks of caring for them, as a Father cares for his children- he encouraged them, comforted them, and urged them to live lives worthy of the gospel. He was a father figure who mentored, guided, and helped them on their faith journey. He did all this out of his compassion for them – it was not done for any financial remuneration. His compassion for them was genuine.

Compassion In The Time Of COVID-19

Equally his concern for their spiritual well- being was sincere. He gave thanks for the faith of the Thessalonians continually, and he was delighted when they sought to imitate him and his companions in the faith. Paul notes that the Thessalonians have become imitators of him and his companions.

For the Thessalonians to bring into question Paul’s integrity is to bring into question their own integrity. In order to curtail such a move, Paul provides evidence for their integrity by pointing to his self-sufficiency, the quality of his actions, the quality of his instruction, and the response that these engendered. In other words, Paul tries to restore the correct perspective by reminding them of his commitment, compassion and concern for them.

Sadly, it is so often the case that those that are doing their utmost for others out of genuine love and care can be accused of doing wrong. You only need to read the book of Daniel to see that and to look at Christ himself, who knew all about being misunderstood and judged wrongly. This passage is probably a healthy reminder to be slow to judge, and to strive to get the true perspective.

Getting The Right Perspective Towards Investing - Dr Vijay Malik

Our Gospel reading focuses too on the right perspective. The gospel is a healthy reminder of the qualities we are to cultivate. Jesus hits out at the Pharisees and their hypocrisy. They are all show and lack substance. They have such a high opinion of themselves. They are puffed up with pride. Pride produces a desire to be worshipped. They do all their deed to be seen by others. For they make their phylacteries broad and their fringes long, and they love the place of honour at feasts and the best seats in the synagogues and greetings in the marketplaces and being called Rabbi by others. All their activities were done by the religious leaders so that others would worship them. Not just noticed but worshipped. They have the wrong perspective.

They do not have the heart that Paul had for the people in Thessalonica nor the compassion that Jesus had for his people. On the contrary the Pharisees tie up heavy burdens, and lay them on the people’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to move them with their finger. They think that greatness is clawing, scratching, and fighting their way to the top but they have the wrong perspective for as Jesus said true greatness lies in humble service, in loving, caring, and helping.

Today our readings are concerned about holding the right perspective. They remind us that we are to be imitators of Jesus in his loving humble service, and we are to follow the example of Paul in our commitment, compassion, and concern for others. Indeed, we can be a spiritual mentor like Paul to others, seeking to encourage others in their faith, with no thought for recompense or praise for ourselves. We are encouraged to be humble servants who work for the glory of God. Amen

Christ The Savior Lutheran Church

NICENE CREED

We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty maker of heaven and earth,

of all that is, seen and unseen.

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,

the only Son of God,

eternally begotten of the Father,

God from God, Light from Light,

true God from true God,

begotten, not made,

of one substance with the Father.

Through him all things were made.

For us and for our salvation

he came down from heaven;

by the power of the Holy Spirit

he became incarnate of the Virgin Mary,

and was made man.

For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;

he suffered death and was buried.

On the third day he rose again

in accordance with the Scriptures;

he ascended into heaven

and is seated at the right hand of the Father.

He will come again in glory

to judge the living and the dead,

and his kingdom will have no end.

We believe in the Holy Spirit,

the Lord, the giver of life,

who proceeds from the Father.

With the Father and the Son,

he is worshipped and glorified.

He has spoken through the Prophets.

We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.

We acknowledge one baptism

for the forgiveness of sins.

We look for the resurrection of the dead,

and the life of the world to come. Amen.

Praying Moms – LRPC HOME

PRAYERS

God our Father,

your love for us is constant and steadfast.

It’s a love that is without limits

and full of compassion and grace.

We thank you for the love

that you lavish upon us

and for the honour it is to be sons

and daughters in your heavenly family.

Help us to love you with all our heart

and to love one another

so that by our love we may be seen to be your disciples.

Lord in your mercy

Hear our prayer.

God our Saviour Jesus Christ,

your love was so complete for us

that you gave everything on the cross for us.

Help us to be willing to give everything we can

to further the work of your kingdom.

Help us to have the right perspective and attitude in life

so that we might offer you our humble and gracious service,

and bring honour and glory to your name.

Lord in your mercy

Hear our prayer

Wisdom finds truth | Curious Times

God the Holy Spirit, full of wisdom and power

fill us with your insight and vision,

that we might discern your grace at work

in our churches and in our communities.

Empower us to be advocates for those

who are oppressed and without a voice.

Guide us to speak out for justice

and equal opportunities for all,

that together we might build up in faith

your kingdom of love and peace.

Lord in your mercy

Hear our prayer

The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord Brings Comfort – Burwell Baptist Church

God of all hope, our security and identity are in you.

We are one with you and one with our brothers and sisters

in the Anglican Communion throughout the world.

We weep with those that weep

and are under great stress and suffering

as a result of flooding and storms.

We think especially of those

in Libya and other parts of the world

that have lost so much

and are living in such dire circumstances.

Thank- you for the aid agencies like Christian Aid

who seek to help and alleviate their pain,

by bringing them basic supplies.

Help us to play our part in supporting the aid agencies

and may your hand of blessing be on their work and ministry.

Lord in your mercy

Hear our prayer

What is COMPASSION? What does COMPASSION Mean? Define COMPASSION (Meaning &  Definition Explained) - YouTube

God of all compassion, your heart reaches out to all those

who are poor and are in need.

We lift to you the many refugees from Syria

and from many other parts of the world.

Help them to find asylum and to establish a new life

with security, love and peace.

Help us to play our part, however large or small

in bringing that request into a reality.

Lord in your mercy

Hear our prayer

God of all healing, you delight in helping

the broken hearted and despairing.

Be with all who have had their lives shattered

as a result of violence and war.

We think especially of the Middle East

of the hostilities and battles there

and pray for stability, rest and peace

Lord in your mercy

Hear our prayer

God's Peace -

God of all peace, you take away anxiety and worry,

and so we think of all who are struggling at this time,

with fear, or stress, with mental health issues,

or physical difficulties and illness

and ask O God that you would draw near

and meet them at their point of need,

and grant them your peace, your strength,

your healing touch and newness of life.

Silence

We remember too those members of St John’s

whom you brought home to the eternal city this past year,

giving thanks for all they were in you

and for all they accomplished in you.

In the quiet we lift their families to you.

Lord in your mercy

Hear our prayer

God of all joy, you delight in us

and bless us with great gifts.

Empower us by your Holy Spirit

to use our gifts for your glory and

may your joy be our strength today and always.

Merciful Father accept these prayers

for the sake of your Son Jesus Christ our Lord,

who taught us to pray together..

Our Father in heaven,

hallowed be your name,

your kingdom come,

your will be done,

on earth as in heaven.

Give us today our daily bread.

Forgive us our sins

as we forgive those

who sin against us.

Do not bring us to the time of trial

but deliver us from evil.

For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours, now and for ever. Amen.

HYMN

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BLESSING

The peace of God, which passes all understanding,

keep your hearts and minds in the knowledge and love of God,

and of his Son, Jesus Christ, our Lord:

and the blessing of God the Father,

the Son and Holy Spirit,

be among you and remain with you always. Amen

DISMISSAL

Go or stay in peace to love and serve the Lord.

In the name of Christ.

Welcome

St John the Evangelist, Dumfries, is a parish of the Scottish Episcopal Church also serving Methodist parishioners locally.

Donations

You can donate to St John’s by credit or debit card by following these links.

St John’s Bellringers on Border Life video

Notices

Contemporary Service

Contemporary Service

The Contemporary Service is at 6pm, on the second and fourth Sundays of the month, followed by refreshments in the hall.

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