Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost
+ In the Name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen.
O God, who alone can probe the depths of the heart, You hear the prayer of the humble and justify the repentant sinner.
As we stand before You, grant us the gift of humility, that we may see our own sins clearly and refrain from judging our neighbor.
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. Amen.
“Your Name” – Paul Baloche
Gospel Reading: Luke 18:9-14(NLT)
Parable of the Pharisee and Tax Collector
Then Jesus told this story to some who had great confidence in their own righteousness and scorned everyone else: “Two men went to the Temple to pray. One was a Pharisee, and the other was a despised tax collector. The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed this prayer: ‘I thank you, God, that I am not like other people—cheaters, sinners, adulterers. I’m certainly not like that tax collector! I fast twice a week, and I give you a tenth of my income.’
“But the tax collector stood at a distance and dared not even lift his eyes to heaven as he prayed. Instead, he beat his chest in sorrow, saying, ‘O God, be merciful to me, for I am a sinner.’ I tell you, this sinner, not the Pharisee, returned home justified before God. For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”
“Hungry” – Kathryn Scott
Compassionate God, we fall on our knees before Your throne of grace; hear our prayers for the needs of Your people. We pray especially –
+ For church leaders around the world, that they may lead with humility and grace….
+ For world leaders, that they may govern with wisdom, justice and mercy….
+ For national leaders, that they may not forget the needs of the poor and powerless….
+ For our own country, that politics may be set aside for liberty, justice, and the betterment of all….
+ For those suffering from war and injustice, that they may be delivered from evil and their communities restored….
+ For the sick, particularly people near death, that Your presence and loving-kindness may comfort them as they approach Your heavenly kingdom….
Compassionate God, You rescue Your people in all their distress, hear our prayers we ask in humility and faith, through Christ our Lord. Amen.
“Good Fight” -Unspoken
Closing: 2 Timothy 4:6-8 (excerpts)
Fight the good fight; finish the race and remain faithful. For the crown of righteousness awaits you, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will give to all who eagerly await Him – on the day of His return.
+ In the Name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen