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A Meditation

Right now—and for the last many hundreds of years—seekers have tried to find proof that David from the Old Testament actually lived. My opinion is this: It’s sort of the finding the site of Troy, the place of the ancient war chronicled in the Iliad. It had seemed impossibly lost; maybe never even existed. Yet, in the 1880s, a journalist went back to old stories, read them with fresh eyes, and identified where ancient Troy of the Trojan war was located. He nailed it.

Thus, I believe that proof of David will be found. That proof lies in terms of tantalizing archeological hints underground, and in terms of the written scriptural record that has lived for 2500 hundred years. Presently, archaeological work is being done in Jerusalem on a promising site that could prove to be David’s palace. Inscriptions about the “house of David” have been found in two other sites dating to about 1000 BC, the era of the Bible’s King David.

David—both the person and the idea—is crucial to understanding ancient Hebrew history, theology, and sense of itself. Moreover, you don’t need to know much about the New Testament to know that the Kingdom of David prefigures many times in the story of Jesus.

Many of you remember, as I’ve done this before, I will be engaging into a deep dive into David over the summer months in a sermon series, culled from the books of first and second Samuel. I will be juxtaposing and amplifying the Old Testament into the New Testament. David was a shepherd boy, a musician, a warrior, a friend, a trickster, a king, a womanizer, a nation builder, a sinner, and a legend. Neither God nor David gave up on each other. There is lots to think about in terms of God’s fulfillment of his plan of creation and salvation through his servant David. Just like God is doing with us.

 Pastor Neil

OPENING ACCLAMATION

 Celebrant Alleluia! Christ is risen.

People     The Lord has risen indeed. Alleluia!

Beloved God, as we approach your Presence, guide and stir us

with your Holy Spirit, that we may become one body, one spiriting Jesus Christ our Savior. Chiefly are we bound to praise you for the glorious resurrection of your Son Jesus Christ our Lord; for he is the true Paschal Lamb, who was sacrificed for us, and has taken away the sin of the world. By his death he has destroyed death, and by his rising to life again he has won for us everlasting life. Amen.

 

SONG OF PRAISE (The Gloria)

Glory to God in the highest, and peace to his people on earth.

Lord God, heavenly King, almighty God and Father, we worship you, we give you thanks,  we praise you for your glory.

Lord Jesus Christ, only Son of the Father, Lord God, Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world: have mercy on us; you are seated at the right hand of the Father: receive our prayer.

For you alone are the Holy One, you alone are the Lord, you alone are the Most High, Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit, in the glory of God the Father. Amen.

 

THE COLLECT OF THE DAY

 Celebrant         The Lord be with you.

People               And also with you.

Celebrant       Keep, O Lord, your household the Church in your steadfast and love, that through your grace we may proclaim
your truth with boldness, and minister your justice with compassion; for the sake of our Savior Jesus Christ, who
lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen. Amen.

 

THE LITURGY OF THE WORD

A Reading from  1 SAMUEL Acts at the 15th Chapter

The spirit of the LORD came mightily upon David

Then Samuel went to Ramah; and Saul went up to his house in Gibeah of Saul. Samuel did not see Saul again until the day of his death, but Samuel grieved over Saul. And the LORD was sorry that he had made Saul king over Israel. The LORD said to Samuel, “How long will you grieve over Saul? I have rejected him from being king over Israel. Fill your horn with oil and set out; I will send you to Jesse the Bethlehemite, for I have provided for myself a king among his sons.”

Samuel said, “How can I go? If Saul hears of it, he will kill me.” And the LORD said, “Take a heifer with you, and say, ‘I have come to sacrifice to the LORD.’ Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you what you shall do; and you shall anoint for me the one whom I name to you.”

Samuel did what the LORD commanded and came to Bethlehem. The elders of the city came to meet him trembling, and said, “Do you come peaceably?” He said, “Peaceably; I have come to sacrifice to the LORD; sanctify yourselves and come with me to the sacrifice.” And he sanctified Jesse and his sons and invited them to the sacrifice.

When they came, he looked on Eliab and thought, “Surely the Lord’s anointed is now before the LORD.” But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for the LORD does not see as mortals see; they look on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.”

Then Jesse called Abinadab, and made him pass before Samuel. He said, “Neither has the LORD chosen this one.”
Then Jesse made Shammah pass by. And he said, “Neither has the LORD chosen this one.” Jesse made seven of his sons pass before Samuel, and Samuel said to Jesse, “The LORD has not chosen any of these.”

Samuel said to Jesse, “Are all your sons here?” And he said, “There remains yet the youngest, but he is keeping the sheep.” And Samuel said to Jesse, “Send and bring him; for we will not sit down until he comes here.” He sent and brought him in.

Now he was ruddy, and had beautiful eyes, and was handsome. The LORD said, “Rise and anoint him; for this is the one.” Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the presence of his brothers; and the spirit of the LORD came mightily upon David from that day forward. Samuel then set out and went to Ramah.

Reader     The Word of the Lord.

People      Thanks be to God.

 

 Reader     From the 20th Psalm, said responsively

The LORD answer you in the day of trouble! The name of the God of Jacob protect you!

May he send you help from the sanctuary, and give you support from Zion.

May he remember all your offerings, and regard with favor your burnt sacrifices. Selah

May he grant you your heart’s desire, and fulfill all your  plans.

May we shout for joy over your victory, and in the name of our God set up our banners. May the LORD fulfill all your petitions.

Now I know that the LORD will help his anointed; he will answer him from his holy heaven with mighty victories by his right hand.

Some take pride in chariots, and some in horses, but our pride is in the name of the LORD our God.

They will collapse and fall, but we shall rise and stand upright.

 Give victory to the king, O LORD; answer us when we call.

 

 The Epistle to the Corinthians, at the 2nd Chapter

We walk by faith, not by sight

Reader     A Reading 2 Corinthians

We are always confident; even though we know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord—for we walk by faith, not by sight. Yes, we do have confidence, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord. So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him. For all of us must appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each may receive recompense for what has been done in the body, whether good or evil.

Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we try to persuade others; but we ourselves are well known to God, and I hope that we are also well known to your consciences. We are not commending ourselves to you again, but giving you an opportunity to boast about us, so that you may be able to answer those who boast in outward appearance and not in the heart.

For if we are beside ourselves, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. For the love of Christ urges us on, because we are convinced that one has died for all; therefore all have died. And he died for all, so that those who live might live no longer for themselves, but for him who died and was raised for them. From now on, therefore, we regard no one from a human point of view; even though we once knew Christ from a human point of view, we know him no longer in that way. So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new!

Reader     The Word of the Lord.

People      Thanks be to God.

  

The Gospel of MARK, at the 4th Chapter

The earth produces of itself

Celebrant The holy gospel according to John

People      Glory to you, O Lord.

He also said, “The kingdom of God is as if someone would scatter seed on the ground, and would sleep and rise night and day, and the seed would sprout and grow, he does not know how. The earth produces of itself, first the stalk, then the head, then the full grain in the head. But when the grain is ripe, at once he goes in with his sickle, because the harvest has come.”

He also said, “With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable will we use for it? It is like a mustard seed, which, when sown upon the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth; yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes the greatest of all shrubs, and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade.”

With many such parables he spoke the word to them, as they were able to hear it; he did not speak to them except in parables, but he explained everything in private to his

 Celebrant The Gospel of the Lord.

People     Praise to you, O Christ.

 

Sermon                                                  Pastor Neil

 

Response to the sermon:

Celebrant: Let us bless the Lord.

People: Thanks be to God.

 

THE NICENE CREED

 We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen.

 We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten not made, of one Being with the Father. Through him all things were made. For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven: by the power of the Holy Spirit he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary and was made man. For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried. On the third day he rose again in accordance with the Scriptures; he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end.

 We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son. With the Father and the Son, he is worshiped and glorified. He has spoken through the Prophets. We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.  We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins. We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come.  Amen.

 

Prayers of the People

 Reader     In peace, we pray to you, Lord God—

Grant, Almighty God, that all who confess your name may be united in your truth, live together in your love, and reveal your glory in the world. Lord, in your mercy, Hear our prayer.

Guide the people of this land, and of all nations, in the ways of justice and peace; that we may honor one another and serve the common good. Heal the rifts that bind, vex, and scare us. Lord, in your mercy, Hear our prayer.

Give us all a reverence for the earth as your own creation, that we may use its resources rightly in the service of others and to your honor and glory. Heal the wounds of those who have been victimized by climate change and destruction. Lord, in your mercy, Hear our prayer.

Bless all whose lives are closely linked with ours, and grant that we may serve Christ in them, and love one another as he loves us. Lord, in your mercy, Hear our prayer.

Comfort and heal all those who suffer in body, mind, or spirit; give us purpose and hope in troubles, and bring us the joy of your salvation. Bestow courage upon those who look out at the world, and who wonder if there is a safe and gracious place for them. Lord, in your mercy, Hear our prayer.

We commend to your mercy all who have died, that your will for them may be fulfilled; and, we pray that we may share with all your saints in your eternal kingdom. Lord, in your mercy, Hear our prayer.

Silence to lift up our own prayers to God

Celebrant         Almighty God, by your Holy Spirit you have made us one with your saints in heaven and on earth: Grant that in our earthly pilgrimage, we may always be supported by this community of fellowship of love and prayer. We ask this for the sake of Jesus Christ, in whom all our intercessions are acceptable through the Spirit, and who lives and reigns for ever and ever. Amen.

 

A Confession of Our Sins to God

Celebrant:               Let us turn our thoughts and voices to a prayer of confession and penitence.

People      God of all mercy, we confess that we have sinned against you, opposing your will in our lives. We have denied your goodness in each other, in ourselves, and in the world you have created. We repent of the evil that enslaves us, the evil we have done, and the evil done on our behalf. Forgive, restore, and strengthen us through our Savior Jesus Christ, that we may abide in your love and serve only your will. Amen.

Celebrant Almighty God have mercy on us ☩, forgive us all our sins, and through the grace of Jesus Christ, strengthen us in all goodness, and by the power of the Holy Spirit keep us in eternal life. Amen.

 

The Great Thanksgiving

Celebrant         The Lord be with you.

People              And also with you.

Celebrant         Lift up your hearts.

People              We lift them to the Lord.

Celebrant         Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

People              It is right to give our thanks and praise.

 

God of all power, Ruler of the Universe, you are worthy of glory and praise. Through your dearly beloved Son Jesus Christ our Lord.

After his glorious resurrection he openly appeared to his
disciples, and in their sight ascended into heaven, to prepare
a place for us; that where he is, there we might also be, and
reign with him in glory. Glory to you for ever and ever.

At your command all things came to be: the vast expanse of interstellar space, galaxies, suns, the planets in their courses, and this fragile earth, our island home. By your will they were created and have their being.

From the primal elements you brought forth the human race, and blessed us with memory, reason, and skill. You made us the rulers of creation. But we turned against you, and betrayed your trust; and we turned against one another. Have mercy, Lord, for we are sinners in your sight.

Again and again, you called us to return to your fold. Through prophets and sages you revealed your righteous Law. And in the fullness of time you sent your only Son, born of a woman, to fulfill your Law, to open for us the way of freedom and peace. By his blood, he reconciled us. By his wounds, we are healed.

And therefore we praise you, joining with the heavenly chorus, with prophets, apostles, and martyrs, and with all those in every generation who have looked to you in hope—to proclaim with them your glory, in their unending hymn:

Celebrant and People Holy, Holy, Holy Lord, God of power and might, heaven and earth are full of your glory. Hosanna in the highest. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest.

Celebrant         And so, Father, we who have been redeemed by him, andmade a new people by water and the Spirit, now bring before you these gifts. Sanctify them by your Holy Spirit to be the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ our Lord.

On the night he was betrayed he took bread, said the blessing ☩, broke the bread, and gave it to his friends, and said, “Take, eat: This is my Body, which is given for you. Do this for the remembrance of me.”

After supper, he took the cup of wine, gave thanks ☩, and said, “Drink this, all of you: This is my Blood of the new Covenant, which is shed for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins. Whenever you drink it, do this for the remembrance of me.”

Remembering now his work of redemption, and offering to you this sacrifice of thanksgiving, (said together) We celebrate his death and resurrection, as we await the day of his coming.

Lord God of our Ancestors: God of Abraham, Sarah, and Hagar; Isaac and Rebekah; and Jacob, Leah, and Rachel. God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, born to Mary, his mother, and watched over by Joseph, with a father’s care: Open our eyes to see your hand at work in the world about us. Deliver us from the presumption of coming to this table for solace only, and not for strength; for pardon only, and not for renewal. Let the grace of this Holy Communion make us one body, one spirit in Christ, that we may worthily serve the world in his name.

(said together) Risen Lord, be known to us in the breaking of the Bread.

Send now, we pray, your Holy Spirit, upon your redeemed and holy people, ☩ and upon these your gifts of bread and wine, that we may bear fruit worthy of repentance. Bless us to abound in hope, be filled with all joy and peace in believing, and receive our inheritance with all your saints in light.

People     Through Christ and with Christ and in Christ, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, to you be honor, glory, and praise, for ever and ever. Amen.

And now, as our Savior Christ has taught us, we are bold to pray:

 

The Lord’s Prayer

     People      Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory for ever and ever. Amen.

 

A Call to Communion

Celebrant   The gifts of God for the people of God. Take them in remembrance that Christ died for you, and feed on him in your hearts by faith, with thanksgiving.

 

The General Thanksgiving

Celebrant and People

Almighty God, Father of all mercies, we your unworthy servants give you humble thanks for all your goodness and loving-kindness to us and to all whom you have made. We bless you for our creation, preservation, and all the blessings of this life; but above all for your immeasurable love in the redemption of the world by our Lord Jesus Christ; for the means of grace, and for the hope of glory. And, we pray, give us such an awareness of your mercies, that with truly thankful hearts we may show forth your praise, not only with our lips, but in our lives, by giving up ourselves to your service, and by walking before you in holiness and righteousness all our days; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with you and the Holy Spirit, be honor and glory throughout all ages. Amen.

Celebrant Let us bless the Lord.
People     Thanks be to God.

 

The Blessing

Celebrant         Sisters and brothers, we go out into the world in peace. We live and walk as part of God’s beloved community. May God help us all to be of good courage, to hold on to what is good, and to return to no one an evil for an evil. Strengthen the faint-hearted, support the weak, aid the suffering, do justice and hope, honor all people, and let our gentleness be known by everyone. May God, who raised our Lord Jesus from death, lift us up and restore us to wholeness. And may God bless us all, ☩ in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Celebrant Go in peace to love and serve the Lord. Alleluia, Alleluia.

People      Thanks be to God. Alleluia, Alleluia.

 

More about the artwork on the front of this bulletin

The Winchester Psalter is an English 12th-century illuminated manuscript psalter, held by the British Library, also sometimes known as the Psalter of Henry of Blois, and formerly known as the St Swithu’’s Psalter. It was probably made for use in Winchester Cathedral, most scholars agreeing that the most likely patron was the Henry of Blois, brother of Stephen, King of England, and Bishop of Winchester from 1129 until his death in 1171. The manuscript now has 142 vellum (parchment) leaves, which after a fire in 1731 have been cut and mounted individually and rebound. There are 38 miniature pages in total.

A “miniature” is a work of illustrative art, a small painting, that was included on the pages of a book. Because typically the page also contained text, the miniature had to be small enough to accommodate the reading material. In the case of this miniature, the book was a psalter, a book of psalms in Latin and French. The miniature comprises two panels. The upper one depicts the young shepherd boy David protecting his flock from a lion, which already has one of the flock in its mouth that David is saving. The lower panel depicts the prophet Samuel anointing David while his father and his older brothers look on.

The history of the manuscript disappears until about 1600. From that time, was held in the same family’s holdings of ancient manuscripts. It is now in the British Library and is rarely on public display. However, it has been digitized and is available online along with the rest of the manuscript. (Winchester Psalter is also an entry in Wikipedia.)