Friday Morning: 10 May 2019 – Mark 9:2-13 – “Listen to him.”

Friday Morning

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

Opening (A Collect for Endurance – Friday)

Almighty God, whose beloved Son first suffered pain and crucifixion before entering into glory: Mercifully grant that we, walking in his footsteps, may find it none other than the way of life and peace; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord. Amen.
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Morning Reading – Mark 9:2-13 (NLT)

The Transfiguration

Six days later Jesus took Peter, James, and John, and led them up a high mountain to be alone. As the men watched, Jesus’ appearance was transformed, and his clothes became dazzling white, far whiter than any earthly bleach could ever make them. Then Elijah and Moses appeared and began talking with Jesus.

Peter exclaimed, “Rabbi, it’s wonderful for us to be here! Let’s make three shelters as memorials—one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” He said this because he didn’t really know what else to say, for they were all terrified.

Then a cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my dearly loved Son. Listen to him.” Suddenly, when they looked around, Moses and Elijah were gone, and they saw only Jesus with them.

As they went back down the mountain, he told them not to tell anyone what they had seen until the Son of Man had risen from the dead. So they kept it to themselves, but they often asked each other what he meant by “rising from the dead.”

Then they asked him, “Why do the teachers of religious law insist that Elijah must return before the Messiah comes?”

Jesus responded, “Elijah is indeed coming first to get everything ready. Yet why do the Scriptures say that the Son of Man must suffer greatly and be treated with utter contempt? But I tell you, Elijah has already come, and they chose to abuse him, just as the Scriptures predicted.”
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Morning Reflection:

If ever there was a validation of Jesus’ person and mission, this was it.

Then a cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said,
“This is my dearly loved Son. Listen to him.”
– Mark 9:7

The transfiguration was a fulfillment of Jesus’ prophecy in Mark 9:1. It was a prophetic view of the glorious risen Christ – the glorious risen Christ who is coming again in great power.

“I tell you the truth, some standing here right now will not die
before they see the Kingdom of God arrive in great power!”

But what was the point? Threefold –

  1. To assure believers that Jesus is God’s beloved Son.
  2. To persuade believers to listen to, and obey him.
  3. To provide believers with a foretaste of his glorious return.

Questions for consideration:

  • Do you believe that in every circumstance, no matter how bleak, God always has the last word? Does the transfiguration bolster that perspective, or not? Please explain.
  • What’s the difference between listening to Jesus and obeying him? Please explain.
  • Do you believe that Jesus is coming again in glory? What difference does it make to you? Please explain.
  • Do you anticipate a glorious future with Christ in his coming Kingdom? Please explain.

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Morning Prayer:

Prayer for world leaders to fight against Christian persecution:

Sovereign Lord: All authority vested in governance comes from you and is accountable to you. Stir the hearts of every world leader to carry out their responsibilities justly and peacefully with special attention to Christians who are defenseless, in need of protection. Give them the wisdom to enact the necessary policies and procedures to make a lasting, global difference. I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.

My Prayer:

Heavenly Father: Thank you for this vision of the risen Christ you have given us in the Gospels. Fill me with wonder and confidence that you are the Sovereign Lord over all of human history. Open my heart, mind, and spirit to not simply listen to your Son, but to obey him – to follow him come what may. And thank you for the assurance of a place in your coming Kingdom through faith in him – who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, God for ever and ever. Amen.
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“This Kingdom” – Darlene Zschech

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Closing:

May the peace of the Lord Christ go with you, wherever He may send you. May He guide you through the wilderness, and protect you through the storm. May He bring you home rejoicing at the wonders He has shown you. May He bring you home rejoicing once again into our doors.

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

The 8th Sunday of Epiphany – 03 Mar 2019 – Luke 9:28-36 ~ Listen to him.

Eighth Sunday of Epiphany

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

Opening Prayer

O God, who on a mountain revealed to chosen witnesses your well-beloved Son,
wonderfully transfigured, glorious and in dazzling white: Grant that we, being delivered from the anxiety of this world, may by faith behold the King in his beauty; who with you, O Father, and you, O Holy Spirit, lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
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“What A Beautiful Name” – Hillsong Worship

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Gospel Reading: Luke 9:28-36 (NLT)

The Transfiguration

About eight days later Jesus took Peter, John, and James up on a mountain to pray. And as he was praying, the appearance of his face was transformed, and his clothes became dazzling white. Suddenly, two men, Moses and Elijah, appeared and began talking with Jesus. They were glorious to see. And they were speaking about his exodus from this world, which was about to be fulfilled in Jerusalem.

Peter and the others had fallen asleep. When they woke up, they saw Jesus’ glory and the two men standing with him. As Moses and Elijah were starting to leave, Peter, not even knowing what he was saying, blurted out, “Master, it’s wonderful for us to be here! Let’s make three shelters as memorials—one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” But even as he was saying this, a cloud overshadowed them, and terror gripped them as the cloud covered them.

Then a voice from the cloud said, “This is my Son, my Chosen One. Listen to him.” When the voice finished, Jesus was there alone. They didn’t tell anyone at that time what they had seen.
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Prayers of Intercession:

Heavenly Father: You sent your Son, Jesus Christ, to show us how to live and love. We confess we have not listened to him – we have not loved you with all our heart, and we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. Please forgive us, and by the power of your Spirit help us –

+ Show patience and kindness, especially to the difficult people in our lives.
+ Show humility and gentleness, considering the needs of others first.
+ Show cheerfulness and grace, even when we have been wronged.
+ Show gladness of heart, when truth wins over falsehood.
+ Show perseverance and faith, when obstacles seem insurmountable.
+ Show hope and endurance, in the face of heartache and suffering.

Heavenly Father: You sent your Son, Jesus Christ, to show us how to live and love. And, he voluntarily laid down his life so that we could be made right with you. Thank you for your forgiveness, and set us again on the path of life and love he has laid out for us. For his name’s sake. Amen.
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“You’re Beautiful” – Phil Wickham

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Blessing – Ephesians 3:20-21

Now to him who is able to do far more than all that we ask or imagine, according to his power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.

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

9th Sunday after Pentecost: 06 Aug – Matthew 17:1-9 ~ Listen to him.

9th Sunday after Pentecost

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

Opening Prayer

God of glory, it is good for us to be here. Reveal your Son to us now in the message of the prophets and the witness of the apostles, that we may heed his voice and receive him in faith. 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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“You Are Holy “ – Christ For Nations Worship


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Reading: Matthew 17:1-9 (NLT)

Six days later Jesus took Peter and the two brothers, James and John, and led them up a high mountain to be alone. As the men watched, Jesus’ appearance was transformed so that his face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as light. Suddenly, Moses and Elijah appeared and began talking with Jesus.

Peter exclaimed, “Lord, it’s wonderful for us to be here! If you want, I’ll make three shelters as memorials—one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.”

But even as he spoke, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy. Listen to him.” The disciples were terrified and fell face down on the ground.

Then Jesus came over and touched them. “Get up,” he said. “Don’t be afraid.” And when they looked up, Moses and Elijah were gone, and they saw only Jesus.

As they went back down the mountain, Jesus commanded them, “Don’t tell anyone what you have seen until the Son of Man has been raised from the dead.”

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Intercessory Prayer

God of glory: You revealed yourself to us through your Son Jesus, full of grace and truth. It’s in his name we come before you; hear our prayers –

+ For the Church, that it may continue to reveal Jesus Christ to the world…. Lord, hear us.
+ For Christians who suffer persecution, that the promise of glory may sustain them…. Lord, hear us.
+ For peace in the world, that nuclear war may never again bring death and disaster…. Lord, hear us.
+ For people who work for peace, that they may continue despite the difficulties they meet…. Lord, hear us.
+ For those who suffer in mind or body, that the healing power of Jesus may bring them comfort…. Lord, hear us.
+ For people on holidays, that they may travel safely and return home refreshed to love and serve you…. Lord, hear us.
+ For Christians who have died as the result of war, that they may enter into the glory of heaven…. Lord, hear us.

Lord God, our king, all peoples see your glory: hear our prayers and ground us in your love, mercy, and grace, through Christ our Lord. Amen.
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“Glory to You” – Aaron Keyes


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Concluding Prayer – Ephesians 3:20-21 (NLT)

Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.

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

Second Sunday of Lent: Gn 22:1-2, 9a, 10-13, 15-18; Ps 116:10, 15-19; Rom 8:31b-34; Mk 9:2-10 ~ beloved sacrifice

Second Sunday of Lent

The gospel of the transfiguration reminds us to hold firm to a vision of glory, on dark days.

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

Opening prayer:

Ever-faithful God, You were well pleased with Abraham’s obedience and You accepted the sacrifice of Your Son, who gave himself up for the sake of us all. Train us by Christ’s teaching and school us in His obedience, that, as we walk His way of sacrifice, we may come to share in Your glory. We ask this through Christ, our deliverance and hope, who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, holy and mighty God for ever and ever.
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A Reading from the Old testament:Genesis 22:1-2, 9-13, 15-18 (NLT)

Some time later, God tested Abraham’s faith. “Abraham!” God called.

“Yes,” he replied. “Here I am.”

“Take your son, your only son — yes, Isaac, whom you love so much — and go to the land of Moriah. Go and sacrifice him as a burnt offering on one of the mountains, which I will show you.”
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Abraham and Isaac Rembrandt, 1634 Hermitage Museum, Saint Petersburg
Abraham and Isaac
Rembrandt, 1634
Hermitage Museum, Saint Petersburg

When they arrived at the place where God had told him to go, Abraham built an altar and arranged the wood on it. Then he tied his son, Isaac, and laid him on the altar on top of the wood.

And Abraham picked up the knife to kill his son as a sacrifice. At that moment the angel of the Lord called to him from heaven, “Abraham! Abraham!”

“Yes,” Abraham replied. “Here I am!”

“Don’t lay a hand on the boy!” the angel said. “Do not hurt him in any way, for now I know that you truly fear God. You have not withheld from me even your son, your only son.”

Then Abraham looked up and saw a ram caught by its horns in a thicket. So he took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering in place of his son.
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Then the angel of the Lord called again to Abraham from heaven. “This is what the Lord says: Because you have obeyed me and have not withheld even your son, your only son, I swear by my own name that I will certainly bless you. I will multiply your descendants beyond number, like the stars in the sky and the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will conquer the cities of their enemies. And through your descendants all the nations of the earth will be blessed — all because you have obeyed me.”
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A Reading from the Psalms: Psalm 116:10, 15-19 (NLT)

I believed in you, so I said, “I am deeply troubled, Lord.”
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The Lord cares deeply when his loved ones die. O Lord, I am your servant; yes, I am your servant, born into your household; you have freed me from my chains. I will offer you a sacrifice of thanksgiving and call on the name of the Lord. I will fulfill my vows to the Lord in the presence of all his people — in the house of the Lord in the heart of Jerusalem. Praise the Lord!
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A Reading from the Letters: Rom 8:31b-34 (NLT)

If God is for us, who can ever be against us? Since he did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all, won’t he also give us everything else? Who dares accuse us whom God has chosen for his own? No one — for God himself has given us right standing with himself. Who then will condemn us? No one — for Christ Jesus died for us and was raised to life for us, and he is sitting in the place of honor at God’s right hand, pleading for us.
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A Reading from the Gospels: Mark 9:2-10 (NLT)

Transfiguration Raphael, 1518-1520 Pinacoteca Vaticana, Vatican City
Transfiguration
Raphael, 1518-1520
Pinacoteca Vaticana, Vatican City

Six days later Jesus took Peter, James, and John, and led them up a high mountain to be alone. As the men watched, Jesus’ appearance was transformed, and his clothes became dazzling white, far whiter than any earthly bleach could ever make them. Then Elijah and Moses appeared and began talking with Jesus.

Peter exclaimed, “Rabbi, it’s wonderful for us to be here! Let’s make three shelters as memorials — one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” He said this because he didn’t really know what else to say, for they were all terrified.

Then a cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my dearly loved Son. Listen to him.” Suddenly, when they looked around, Moses and Elijah were gone, and they saw only Jesus with them.

As they went back down the mountain, he told them not to tell anyone what they had seen until the Son of Man had risen from the dead. So they kept it to themselves, but they often asked each other what he meant by “rising from the dead.”
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Intercessions:

Merciful God: we call on Your Name with thanksgiving and trust…. Lord, hear us.

+ For Christians throughout the world, as we continue on our lenten journey — we pray…. Lord, hear us.
+ For Christians facing persecution in Iraq, Syria and Libya — we pray…. Lord, hear us.
+ For the Jewish people of every country, the sons and daughters of Abraham — we pray…. Lord, hear us.
+ For peace in the world, especially in Ukraine — we pray…. Lord, hear us.
+ For those who are starving in a world of plenty — we pray…. Lord, hear us.
+ For our communities and particularly for people who are lonely or fearful — we pray…. Lord, hear us.
+ For those who have gone before us in faith, especially those who have been martyred for their faith — we pray…. Lord, hear us.

Loving God, we are Your servants who trust in You, even in the midst of affliction: hear our prayers and help us to walk in Your presence all our days, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
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Benediction:

For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:38-39)

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

Morning Reading: Luke 9:28-36 NLT – listen to him

Reading: Luke 9:28-36 NLT

About eight days later Jesus took Peter, John, and James up on a mountain to pray. And as he was praying, the appearance of his face was transformed, and his clothes became dazzling white. Suddenly, two men, Moses and Elijah, appeared and began talking with Jesus. They were glorious to see. And they were speaking about his exodus from this world, which was about to be fulfilled in Jerusalem.

Mosaic of the Transfiguration, in the apse above that altar at St. Catherine’s Monastery on Mt. Sinai, c. 550. Kurt Weitzman, Jan 1964 National Geographic: “…hanging like a veil.”
Mosaic of the Transfiguration, in the apse above that altar at St. Catherine’s Monastery on Mt. Sinai, c. 550. Kurt Weitzman, Jan 1964 National Geographic: “…hanging like a veil.”

Peter and the others had fallen asleep. When they woke up, they saw Jesus’ glory and the two men standing with him.

As Moses and Elijah were starting to leave, Peter, not even knowing what he was saying, blurted out, “Master, it’s wonderful for us to be here! Let’s make three shelters as memorials—one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” But even as he was saying this, a cloud overshadowed them, and terror gripped them as the cloud covered them.

Then a voice from the cloud said, “This is my Son, my Chosen One. Listen to him.” When the voice finished, Jesus was there alone. They didn’t tell anyone at that time what they had seen.

Prayer: Lord Jesus – Open my eyes to see your glory… not just in the big things, but also in the little – even ordinary – things of life. Open my ears to hear you… to really listen when you speak to me. And give me the courage and will to live out your Kingdom purpose for my life… today and always. Amen.

Spiritual Song: “Show Me Your Glory” – Third Day (YouTube)