Second Sunday of Advent – 09 Dec – Luke 3:1-6 ~ Prepare the way!

Second Sunday of Advent

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

Opening Prayer

God of our salvation, you straighten the winding ways of our hearts and smooth the paths made rough by sin. Make our conduct blameless, keep our hearts watchful in holiness, and bring to perfection the good you have begun in us. We ask this through him whose coming is certain, whose day draws near: your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God for ever and ever. Amen.

“Prepare the Way of the Lord” – Jeremy Riddle


Gospel Reading: Luke 3:1-6 (NLT)

It was now the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius, the Roman emperor. Pontius Pilate was governor over Judea; Herod Antipas was ruler over Galilee; his brother Philip was ruler over Iturea and Traconitis; Lysanias was ruler over Abilene. Annas and Caiaphas were the high priests. At this time a message from God came to John son of Zechariah, who was living in the wilderness. Then John went from place to place on both sides of the Jordan River, preaching that people should be baptized to show that they had repented of their sins and turned to God to be forgiven. Isaiah had spoken of John when he said,

“He is a voice shouting in the wilderness, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord’s coming! Clear the road for him! The valleys will be filled, and the mountains and hills made level. The curves will be straightened, and the rough places made smooth. And then all people will see the salvation sent from God.’”

Prayers of Intercession:

Almighty and merciful God: Our salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed –

+ Prepare our hearts to receive the coming of your Son with hope and joy…
+ Renew our minds that we may be transformed by the truth of your Word…
+ Refresh us in faith and love as we enter into your presence in worship…
+ Make us one in faith and baptism, that we may pursue peace together…
+ Rescue those who are oppressed and persecuted by wicked people…
+ Sustain those who are living on the margins and give them hope…
+ Heal those who are sick, and comfort those who mourn…

Almighty and merciful God: Let neither our daily work nor the cares of this life prevent us from hastening to meet your Son. Enlighten us with your wisdom and lead us into his company. We ask through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

“Prepare the Way, O Zion/Come, Thou, Long Expected Jesus” – The Miserable Offenders

Prepare the way, O Zion! Your Christ is drawing near
Let every hill and valley, A level way appear;
Greet one who comes in glory, Foretold in sacred story.
O blest is Christ that came, In God’s most holy name.

Come, Thou long expected Jesus, Born to set Thy people free;
From our fears and sins release us, Let us find our rest in Thee.
Israel’s strength and consolation, Hope of all the earth Thou art;
Dear desire of every nation, Joy of every longing heart.

Born Thy people to deliver, Born a child and yet a King,
Born to reign in us forever, Now Thy gracious kingdom bring.
By Thine own eternal Spirit, Rule in all our hearts alone;
By Thine all sufficient merit, Raise us to Thy glorious throne.

He brings God’s rule, O Zion; he comes from heaven above.
His rule is peace and freedom, and justice, truth and love.
Lift high your praise resounding, for grace and joy abounding.
O, blest is Christ that came, in God’s most holy name.

Fling wide you gates, O Zion; your Savior’s rule embrace.
His tidings of salvation proclaim in every place.
All lands will bow before him, their voices will adore him.
O, blest is Christ that came, in God’s most holy name.

Blessing – Philippians 1:9-11 (NLT)

“I pray that your love will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding. For I want you to understand what really matters, so that you may live pure and blameless lives until the day of Christ’s return. May you always be filled with the fruit of your salvation — the righteous character produced in your life by Jesus Christ — for this will bring much glory and praise to God.”

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