Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time, 29 Jan: Zep 2:3; 3:12-13; Ps 146:6-10; 1 Cor 1:26-31; Mt 5:1-12 ~ the blessed life

Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time

In the Beatitudes, Jesus describes the kind of people who are blessed in God’s eyes. May we be counted among them.

+ In the Name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Opening Prayer:

O God, write on our hearts the wisdom of the gospel, so that we may hunger and thirst for holiness, work tirelessly for peace, and be counted among those who seek first your kingdom. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God for ever and ever.
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“Here I am to Worship/Call” – Hllsong


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A Reading from the Old Testament: Zephaniah 2:3; 3:12-13 (NLT)
[Zephaniah describes the kind of people who find favour with God.]

Seek the Lord, all who are humble, and follow his commands. Seek to do what is right and to live humbly. Perhaps even yet the Lord will protect you—protect you from his anger on that day of destruction.
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Those who are left will be the lowly and humble, for it is they who trust in the name of the Lord. The remnant of Israel will do no wrong; they will never tell lies or deceive one another. They will eat and sleep in safety, and no one will make them afraid.
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A Reading from the Psalms: Psalm 46:6-10 (NLT)

He made heaven and earth, the sea, and everything in them. He keeps every promise forever.

He gives justice to the oppressed and food to the hungry. The Lord frees the prisoners. The Lord opens the eyes of the blind. The Lord lifts up those who are weighed down. The Lord loves the godly. The Lord protects the foreigners among us. He cares for the orphans and widows, but he frustrates the plans of the wicked.

The Lord will reign forever. He will be your God, O Jerusalem, throughout the generations.
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“Psalm 46 Lord of Hosts” – Shane and Shane


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A Reading from the Letters: 1 Corinthians 1:26-31 (NLT)
[Paul reminds us that we are to rely not on our own efforts, but on God’s power.]

Remember, dear brothers and sisters, that few of you were wise in the world’s eyes or powerful or wealthy when God called you. Instead, God chose things the world considers foolish in order to shame those who think they are wise. And he chose things that are powerless to shame those who are powerful. God chose things despised by the world, things counted as nothing at all, and used them to bring to nothing what the world considers important. As a result, no one can ever boast in the presence of God.

God has united you with Christ Jesus. For our benefit God made him to be wisdom itself. Christ made us right with God; he made us pure and holy, and he freed us from sin. Therefore, as the Scriptures say, “If you want to boast, boast only about the Lord.”
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A Reading from the Gospels: Matthew 5:1-12 (NLT)
[Today we begin to read from a section in Matthew’s Gospel which describes the Sermon on the Mount.]

One day as he saw the crowds gathering, Jesus went up on the mountainside and sat down. His disciples gathered around him, and he began to teach them.

“God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.beatitudes

God blesses those who mourn, for they will be comforted.

God blesses those who are humble, for they will inherit the whole earth.

God blesses those who hunger and thirst for justice, for they will be satisfied.

God blesses those who are merciful, for they will be shown mercy.

God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God.

God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God.

God blesses those who are persecuted for doing right, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.

“God blesses you when people mock you and persecute you and lie about you and say all sorts of evil things against you because you are my followers. Be happy about it! Be very glad! For a great reward awaits you in heaven. And remember, the ancient prophets were persecuted in the same way.
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“Humble Yourself” – The Acappella Company


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Intercessory Prayer:

Lord God of Hosts: You raise up those who are bowed down. Shape us in the image of Christ Jesus as we come before You in prayer.

+ That we may accept the loss of all things including their own selves for Your sake….  Lord, hear us
+ That we may  refuse to be in harmony with the standards of the world….  Lord, hear us
+ That we may give up claims to our own rights for the will of Christ….  Lord, hear us
+ That we may renounce all claims to personal achievement and wait for God’s reign of righteousness…..  Lord, hear us
+ That we may give up claims to our own dignity – helping the needy, sick, outcasts–all those who need any kind of ministry….  Lord, hear us
+ That we may give our hearts completely to the rule and reign of Jesus, purifying our hearts with His Word….  Lord, hear us
+ That we may renounce all violence and maintain fellowship where others would break it off….  Lord, hear us
+ That those who have suffered and died in Christ for any just cause will inherit Your Kingdom and receive their reward in heaven….  Lord, hear us

Lord God of Hosts, You keep faith with people in any kind of need: hear our prayer through Christ our Lord. Amen.
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“I Give Myself Away/Here I am to Worship” – William McDowell

I give myself away | I give myself away | So You can use me | I give myself away | I give myself away | So You can use me

Here I am | Here I stand | Lord, my life is in your hands | Lord, I’m longing to see | Your desires revealed in me | I give myself away

Take my heart | Take my life | As a living sacrifice | All my dreams, all my plans | Lord I place them in your hands | I give myself away

My life is not my own | To you I belong | I give myself, I give myself to You

Here I am to worship, here I am to bow down | Here I am to say that You’re my God, You’re altogether lovely, altogether worthy, altogether wonderful to me.
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Benediction:

Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it. – 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24
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+ In the Name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen



Categories: Life in Christ

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