Pentecost| 2nd Thursday – 16 June 2022: Psalm 22:19-28; Isaiah 56:9-12; Romans 2:17-29 ~ The Spirit changes our hearts!

Pentecost| 2nd Thursday – 16 June 2022:

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

Opening:

O Lord, from whom all good proceeds: Grant us the inspiration
of your Holy Spirit, that we may always think those things that
are good, and by your merciful guidance may accomplish the
same; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with
you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

A true Jew is one whose heart is right with God…,
it is a change of heart produced by the Spirit.
And a person with a changed heart
seeks praise from God, not from people.
(Romans 2:29)

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Psalms Reading: Psalm Psalm 22:19-28

22:19 O Lord, do not stay far away!
You are my strength; come quickly to my aid!
Save me from the sword;
spare my precious life from these dogs.
Snatch me from the lion’s jaws
and from the horns of these wild oxen.

I will proclaim your name to my brothers and sisters.
I will praise you among your assembled people.
Praise the Lord, all you who fear him!
Honor him, all you descendants of Jacob!
Show him reverence, all you descendants of Israel!
For he has not ignored or belittled the suffering of the needy.
He has not turned his back on them,
but has listened to their cries for help.

I will praise you in the great assembly.
I will fulfill my vows in the presence of those who worship you.
The poor will eat and be satisfied.
All who seek the Lord will praise him.
Their hearts will rejoice with everlasting joy.
The whole earth will acknowledge the Lord and return to him.
All the families of the nations will bow down before him.
For royal power belongs to the Lord.
He rules all the nations.

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You Are My StrengthHillsong Worship

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OT Reading: Isaiah 56:9-12 (NLT)

Sinful Leaders Condemned

56:9 Come, wild animals of the field!
Come, wild animals of the forest!
Come and devour my people!
For the leaders of my people—
the Lord’s watchmen, his shepherds—
are blind and ignorant.
They are like silent watchdogs
that give no warning when danger comes.
They love to lie around, sleeping and dreaming.
Like greedy dogs, they are never satisfied.
They are ignorant shepherds,
all following their own path
and intent on personal gain.
“Come,” they say, “let’s get some wine and have a party.
Let’s all get drunk.
Then tomorrow we’ll do it again
and have an even bigger party!”

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“Tell Your Heart To Beat Again”Danny Gokey

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NT Reading: Romans 2:17-29 (NLT)

The Jews and the Law

2:17 You who call yourselves Jews are relying on God’s law, and you boast about your special relationship with him. You know what he wants; you know what is right because you have been taught his law. You are convinced that you are a guide for the blind and a light for people who are lost in darkness. You think you can instruct the ignorant and teach children the ways of God. For you are certain that God’s law gives you complete knowledge and truth.

Well then, if you teach others, why don’t you teach yourself? You tell others not to steal, but do you steal? You say it is wrong to commit adultery, but do you commit adultery? You condemn idolatry, but do you use items stolen from pagan temples? You are so proud of knowing the law, but you dishonor God by breaking it. No wonder the Scriptures say, “The Gentiles blaspheme the name of God because of you.”

The Jewish ceremony of circumcision has value only if you obey God’s law. But if you don’t obey God’s law, you are no better off than an uncircumcised Gentile. And if the Gentiles obey God’s law, won’t God declare them to be his own people? In fact, uncircumcised Gentiles who keep God’s law will condemn you Jews who are circumcised and possess God’s law but don’t obey it.

For you are not a true Jew just because you were born of Jewish parents or because you have gone through the ceremony of circumcision. No, a true Jew is one whose heart is right with God. And true circumcision is not merely obeying the letter of the law; rather, it is a change of heart produced by the Spirit. And a person with a changed heart seeks praise from God, not from people.

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Change My Heart Oh God ~ Maranatha! Music
Easy Worship Resources

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Prayer: ACNA | BCP2019

+ Almighty God, to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hid: Cleanse the  thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy Name; through Christ our Lord. Amen

+ Give me, O Lord, a steadfast heart, which no unworthy thought can drag down; an unconquered heart, which no tribulation can wear out; an upright heart, which no unworthy purpose can tempt aside. Bestow upon me understanding to know you, diligence to seek you, wisdom to find you, and  faithfulness that finally may embrace you. Amen. | Thomas Aquinas

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Closing: FaithandWorship.com | John Birch

Come, Holy Spirit, Creator blest,
and in our souls take up Thy rest;
come with Thy grace and heavenly aid
to fill the hearts which Thou hast made.

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

Thursday Morning: 14 Mar 2019 – Romans 2:17-3:8 ~ Who is truly Jewish?

Thursday Morning

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

Opening (Collect for Purity)

Almighty God: to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hid; cleanse the thoughts of my heart through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, that I may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy name, through Christ my Lord. Amen.
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Morning Reading – Romans 2:17-3:8 (NLT)

The Jews and the Law

You who call yourselves Jews are relying on God’s law, and you boast about your special relationship with him. You know what he wants; you know what is right because you have been taught his law. You are convinced that you are a guide for the blind and a light for people who are lost in darkness. You think you can instruct the ignorant and teach children the ways of God. For you are certain that God’s law gives you complete knowledge and truth.

Well then, if you teach others, why don’t you teach yourself? You tell others not to steal, but do you steal? You say it is wrong to commit adultery, but do you commit adultery? You condemn idolatry, but do you use items stolen from pagan temples? You are so proud of knowing the law, but you dishonor God by breaking it. No wonder the Scriptures say,

“The Gentiles blaspheme the name of God because of you.”

The Jewish ceremony of circumcision has value only if you obey God’s law. But if you don’t obey God’s law, you are no better off than an uncircumcised Gentile. And if the Gentiles obey God’s law, won’t God declare them to be his own people? In fact, uncircumcised Gentiles who keep God’s law will condemn you Jews who are circumcised and possess God’s law but don’t obey it.

For you are not a true Jew just because you were born of Jewish parents or because you have gone through the ceremony of circumcision. No, a true Jew is one whose heart is right with God. And true circumcision is not merely obeying the letter of the law; rather, it is a change of heart produced by the Spirit. And a person with a changed heart seeks praise from God, not from people.

God Remains Faithful

Then what’s the advantage of being a Jew? Is there any value in the ceremony of circumcision? Yes, there are great benefits! First of all, the Jews were entrusted with the whole revelation of God.

True, some of them were unfaithful; but just because they were unfaithful, does that mean God will be unfaithful? Of course not! Even if everyone else is a liar, God is true. As the Scriptures say about him,

“You will be proved right in what you say, and you will win your case in court.”

“But,” some might say, “our sinfulness serves a good purpose, for it helps people see how righteous God is. Isn’t it unfair, then, for him to punish us?” (This is merely a human point of view.) Of course not! If God were not entirely fair, how would he be qualified to judge the world? “But,” someone might still argue, “how can God condemn me as a sinner if my dishonesty highlights his truthfulness and brings him more glory?” And some people even slander us by claiming that we say, “The more we sin, the better it is!” Those who say such things deserve to be condemned.
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Morning Reflection:

Who is truly Jewish?

In today’s reading, Paul addresses the Jewish belief that they have a special relationship with God by birth-right. They are the custodians of God’s Law and, as such, are the arbiters of truth and righteousness.

The Problem: Hypocrisy – They don’t practice what they preach, and are more concerned with external appearances than sincere obedience.

The Solution: Inner Transformation – A change of heart produced by the Spirit of God. Hearts like those described in Ezekiel 36:26 –

I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart.

The Result: Truly Jewish People

+ Those whose hearts are right with God
+ Those who obey the Law in spirit and truth
+ Those who seek praise from God, not from people

“Reality with God is not a matter of outward conformity to religious rituals,
but rather of obedience that results from God changing your heart.” – Steven Cole

Questions for Consideration:

  • Do you consider yourself a Christian? Please explain how you arrived at your conclusion?
  • Have you experienced a God-given change of heart – from stony stubborn to tender responsive? Please explain.
  • Re: hypocrisy – Can you think of an area in your life where you don’t do what you know is right; you don’t “practice what you preach?” Please explain.
  • Re: approval – Can you think of an area in your life where you are more concerned about what others think, than about what God thinks? Please explain.

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Morning Prayer: Psalm 51:10-12

“Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a loyal spirit within me. Do not banish me from your presence, and don’t take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and make me willing to obey you.”

I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen
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“Fix You – Ezekiel 36:26” – Coldplay

When you try your best, but you don’t succeed
When you get what you want, but not what you need
When you feel so tired, but you can’t sleep
Stuck in reverse

And the tears come streaming down your face
When you lose something you can’t replace
When you love someone, but it goes to waste
Could it be worse?

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

And high up above or down below
When you’re too in love to let it go
But if you never try, you’ll never know
Just what you’re worth

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

Tears stream down your face
When you lose something you cannot replace
Tears stream down your face
And I

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you
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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