Tuesday Morning: 04 Jun 2019 – Mark 16:9-20 ~ Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone.

Tuesday Morning

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

Opening (A Collect for Peace – Tuesday)

O God, the author of peace and lover of concord, to know you is eternal life and to serve you is perfect freedom: Defend us, your humble servants, in all assaults of our enemies; that we, surely trusting in your defense, may not fear the power of any adversaries, through the might of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
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Morning Reading – Mark 16:9-20 (NLT)

After Jesus rose from the dead early on Sunday morning, the first person who saw him was Mary Magdalene, the woman from whom he had cast out seven demons. She went to the disciples, who were grieving and weeping, and told them what had happened. But when she told them that Jesus was alive and she had seen him, they didn’t believe her.

Afterward he appeared in a different form to two of his followers who were walking from Jerusalem into the country. They rushed back to tell the others, but no one believed them.

Still later he appeared to the eleven disciples as they were eating together. He rebuked them for their stubborn unbelief because they refused to believe those who had seen him after he had been raised from the dead.

And then he told them, “Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone. Anyone who believes and is baptized will be saved. But anyone who refuses to believe will be condemned. These miraculous signs will accompany those who believe: They will cast out demons in my name, and they will speak in new languages. They will be able to handle snakes with safety, and if they drink anything poisonous, it won’t hurt them. They will be able to place their hands on the sick, and they will be healed.”

When the Lord Jesus had finished talking with them, he was taken up into heaven and sat down in the place of honor at God’s right hand. And the disciples went everywhere and preached, and the Lord worked through them, confirming what they said by many miraculous signs.
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Morning Reflection:

“Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone.
Anyone who believes and is baptized will be saved.
But anyone who refuses to believe will be condemned.” – Mark 16:15-16

Just prior to his ascension, Jesus commissioned his disciples to go into every part of the world to preach the Good News – “Christ has died! Christ is risen! Christ will come again. Believe and be baptized and you will be saved.” It all seems pretty straightforward, until you begin to read various commentaries and reflect on the signs that Jesus says will accompany those who believe.

Our different understandings are important, since in many cases they have become the walls that separate believers from one another – contrary to Jesus’ command to love one another as a sign of our belonging to Him. We can disagree without becoming disagreeable; and we can love one another despite our differences.

Questions for consideration:

  • How do believing and baptism relate to each other? Are both required for salvation? Is belief alone, or baptism alone enough? How does your tradition work this out? What do you believe? Please explain.
  • How does believing relate to accompanying signs and wonders? The disciples certainly performed miracles, as did others in Jesus’ name. How about now? Does God use signs and wonders to validate the Gospel today? What do you believe?
  • And what of speaking in tongues, handling snakes, and drinking poison? How does your tradition explain these phenomena? Are they in effect today? Why? Why not? Please explain.
  • In your relationships with believers from different traditions, which do you believe is more important – being right, or being kind and loving? Please explain.

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Morning Prayer:

The Persecuted Church: Prayer for those who are doing the persecuting:

Merciful God: Open the eyes and soften the hearts of the people who have brought unfathomable suffering and abuse upon Christians around the world. Remind us again that you sent your Son to save the whole world, and that you don’t want anyone – even these people – to perish.  I ask this in Jesus’ name, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever. Amen.

My Prayer:

For Evangelists: Almighty and everlasting God – Raise up in this and every land evangelists and heralds of your kingdom, that your Church may proclaim the unsearchable riches of our Savior Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

For the Unity of All Believers: O God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, our only Savior, the Prince of Peace: Give us grace to take to heart the grave dangers we are in through our many divisions. Deliver your Church from all enmity and prejudice, and everything that hinders us from godly union. As there is one Body and one Spirit, one hope of our calling, one Lord, one Faith, one Baptism, one God and Father of us all, so make us all to be of one heart and of one mind, united in one holy bond of truth and peace, of faith and love, that with one voice we may give you praise; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God in everlasting glory. Amen.

For Those who Labor in Unity: Almighty God, we give you thanks for all who labor that the Church of Jesus Christ might be one: Grant that we, instructed by their example, and knit together in unity by your Spirit, may ever stand firm upon the one foundation, which is Jesus Christ our Lord; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

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“SEEKING AND SAVING” – Greg&Lizzy – #VIGIL

You’re coming through the darkness
You’re breaking through our blindness
You’re striding through the Red Sea of death
By taking on our likeness
And dying for the lifeless
You’re raising all you children from the dead
You’re raising up my heart from the dead

You’re smashing through the prison door
O God now your have made me sure
Of how your love is breaking every chain
You’re seeking out the hopeless
You’re saving all the poor
For all you’ve done there’s only one song I can sing
You’re raising up my heart from the dead

Hallelujah Hallelujah
You’re seeking and saving my heart
Hallelujah Hallelujah
You’re seeking and saving my heart

From the darkness and the ashes
We are rising we are rising
With the hosts of all the Heavens
We are rising we are rising
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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

Tuesday Morning: 28 May 2019 – Mark 14:32-42 ~ on the agony of Gethsemane

Tuesday Morning

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

Opening (A Collect for Peace – Tuesday)

O God, the author of peace and lover of concord, to know you is eternal life and to serve you is perfect freedom: Defend us, your humble servants, in all assaults of our enemies; that we, surely trusting in your defense, may not fear the power of any adversaries, through the might of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
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Morning Reading – Mark 14:32-42 (NLT)

Jesus Prays in Gethsemane

They went to the olive grove called Gethsemane, and Jesus said, “Sit here while I go and pray.” He took Peter, James, and John with him, and he became deeply troubled and distressed. He told them, “My soul is crushed with grief to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me.”

He went on a little farther and fell to the ground. He prayed that, if it were possible, the awful hour awaiting him might pass him by. “Abba, Father,” he cried out, “everything is possible for you. Please take this cup of suffering away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.”

Then he returned and found the disciples asleep. He said to Peter, “Simon, are you asleep? Couldn’t you watch with me even one hour? Keep watch and pray, so that you will not give in to temptation. For the spirit is willing, but the body is weak.”

Then Jesus left them again and prayed the same prayer as before. When he returned to them again, he found them sleeping, for they couldn’t keep their eyes open. And they didn’t know what to say.

When he returned to them the third time, he said, “Go ahead and sleep. Have your rest. But no—the time has come. The Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. Up, let’s be going. Look, my betrayer is here!”
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Morning Reflection:

on the agony of Gethsemane

“Abba, Father,” he cried out, “everything is possible for you.
Please take this cup of suffering away from me.
Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.” – Mark 14:32

We can’t begin to fathom the agony that Jesus experienced in Gethsemane. The physical dimension to Jesus’ suffering has been described by medical experts in excruciating detail. But what of his spiritual suffering – the prospect of bearing God’s wrath for the world’s sins and experiencing separation from His Father?

Jesus said: “My soul is crushed with grief to the point of death.” (vs 34) The original words Mark used describe bewilderment, fear, uncertainty and anxiety. The agony that Jesus experienced was much more than any mere martyr has ever had to endure; it was unique to the Messiah, the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.

So how did Jesus pray?

+ Jesus expressed his confident faith in God with whom all things, consistent with His nature, are possible.
+ Jesus expressed his willing submission to God’s will, to renounce himself, as agonizing as that might be.
+ Jesus expressed his complete dependence on God to save him, whether before or after his suffering and death.

Questions for consideration:

  • Have you ever prayed for God to relieve you or a loved one from suffering? How did it work out? Please explain.
  • How do you distinguish between your will and God’s will when it comes to suffering? Please explain.
  • What does spiritual wakefulness mean to you, especially when it comes to suffering and prayer? Please explain.
  • In his letter to the Romans, the Apostle Paul writes: “If we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering.” (Romans 8:16-18) What does that mean to you? Please explain.

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Morning Prayer:

The Persecuted Church: Prayer for those who are doing the persecuting:

Merciful God: Open the eyes and soften the hearts of the people who have brought unfathomable suffering and abuse upon Christians around the world. Remind us again that you sent your Son to save the whole world, and that you don’t want anyone – even these people – to perish.  I ask this in Jesus’ name, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever. Amen.

Prayer: For Submission to God’s WillJoseph Mercier

O Holy Spirit, beloved of my soul, I adore you. Enlighten me, guide me, strengthen me, console me. Tell me what I should do; give me your orders. I promise to submit myself to all that you desire of me and to accept all that you permit to happen to me. Let me only know your will. Amen.

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“Go to Dark Gethsemane” – Page CXVI

Go to dark Gethsemane,
feel the tempter’s power;
Your Redeemer’s conflict see,
watch with Him one hour,
Turn not from His griefs away;
Turn not from His griefs
Learn of Jesus Christ to pray.
Turn not from His griefs

See Him at the judgment hall,
beaten, bound, arraigned;
O the wormwood and the gall!
the pangs His soul sustained!!
Shun not suffering, and shame;
Oh Shun not suffering!
Learn of Christ to bear the cross.
Shun not suffering

Calvary’s mournful mountain climb;
adoring at His feet,
Mark that miracle of time,
God’s sacrifice complete
“It is finished!” hear Him cry;
Oh It is finished, done
Learn of Jesus Christ to die. It is finished, done

He wept,
we wept …
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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