Year C
Proper 12
Sunday 28 July 2019


Eucharistic Preface


Let us lift up our hearts.
    We lift them to the Lord.
Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
    It is right to give our thanks and praise.

It is indeed right to give you our thanks and praise, O God,
and hallow your name throughout the earth,
for in you love and fidelity embrace,
peace and justice kiss.

When you created the earth and poured out your riches
the land sprang to life with good gifts for all.
When we prostituted ourselves
to the ruling spirits of the world,
you loved us still, and sent your prophets to call us back.

In your child, Jesus,
your divine nature has indwelt humanity.
Nailed to the cross, he cancelled the record of our sin,
and when we were buried with him in baptism,
you raised us with him
through faith in your active power.
Now to all who seek and ask,
you give the gift of life,
holding us together in Christ’s body,
nourishing us daily with the bread of life
and calling us “Children of the living God.”

Therefore with .....

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net



Short Preface
(for insertion into Eucharistic prayers with fixed prefaces)

We thank you that to all who seek and ask,
you give the gift of full life,
holding us together in Christ’s body,
nourishing us daily with the bread of life
and calling us “Children of the living God.”

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




General Prayer of Thanksgiving
(Preface reformatted for use apart from communion)

We give you all thanks and praise, O God,
and hallow your name throughout the earth,
for in you love and fidelity embrace,
peace and justice kiss.

When you created the earth and poured out your riches
the land sprang to life with good gifts for all.
When we prostituted ourselves
to the ruling spirits of the world,
you loved us still, and sent your prophets to call us back.

In your child, Jesus,
your divine nature has indwelt humanity.
Nailed to the cross, he cancelled the record of our sin,
and when we were buried with him in baptism,
you raised us with him
through faith in your active power.
Now to all who seek and ask,
you give the gift of life,
holding us together in Christ’s body,
nourishing us daily with the bread of life
and calling us “Children of the living God.”

Therefore, with our hearts lifted high,
we offer you thanks and praise at all times
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




Declaration of Grace / Absolution

To all who turn their hearts to God, the word of peace comes:
God has erased the record that stood against us,
nailing it to the cross of Christ.
God has shown mercy,
coming to revive us and save us.

Sisters and Brothers,
    your sins are forgiven;
        be at peace.

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




Commission & Benediction

Go now as people in whom love and fidelity embrace;
peace and justice kiss.
Live your lives in Christ,
rooted and built up in him,
full of thanksgiving
and praying as he taught us.

And may God give good gifts in answer to your prayers;
May Christ Jesus establish you in the faith;
And may the Holy Spirit pour out heaven’s riches upon you.

We go in peace to love and serve the Lord,
    In the name of Christ. Amen.

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net






Paraphrases of the Scripture Lections
for Proper 12 - Year C - Sunday 28 July 2019
Lections from The Revised Common Lectionary.
Copyright 1992 by the Consultation on Common Texts (CCT)
P. O. Box 340003, Room 381, Nashville, TN 37203-0003, USA. Used with Permission.


* Hosea 1: 2-10

    When Hosea was first called to be the LORD'S mouthpiece, the LORD said to him, “Hosea, Israel has been as unfaithful to me as a wife who has sex with anyone willing to pay. Since you are to represent me, go and take a prostitute as your wife, and have children with her, even though you’ll always wonder if they are really yours.”
    So Hosea went and married a prostitute named Gomer, the daughter of Diblaim. Gomer fell pregnant and soon they had a baby boy.
    The LORD said to Hosea, “You are to name your son Jezreel, after the site of the infamous massacre. It won’t be long now before I will punish the royal family of King Jehu for that massacre. The kingdom of Israel will be destroyed. When that day comes, I will smash their weapons to pieces right there in the Jezreel valley.”
    Gomer fell pregnant again and gave birth to a baby girl. This time the LORD said to Hosea, “You are to name your daughter ‘No-mercy’. I’ve had a gutful of the people of Israel. I will no longer have mercy on them. I am not forgiving them any more. The people of Judah still belong to me and I will be merciful to them. Their defence systems, armies and weapons won’t save them, but I, the LORD their God, will save them myself.”
    After she had weaned No-mercy, Gomer fell pregnant again and gave birth to another baby boy. The LORD said to Hosea, “You are to name this one ‘Not-mine’, because these people are not mine any more, and I am no longer their God. Nevertheless, it will not always be that way. One day Israel will flourish in such numbers that trying to count them would be like trying to count the grains of sand on the beach. And, in the very same place where they were known as ‘Not-mine’, they will once again be known as ‘Children of the living God.’”

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net



* Psalm 85

LORD, you smiled on your land
........and brought back the good times for your people.

You struck out the record of our guilt
........and pardoned all we had done wrong.

You swallowed your rage,
........unclenched your fists, and cooled down.

Yes God, you have saved us before,
........and now we need your help again.
Put aside the anger we caused you, LORD,
........and help us get back on track.

You won’t maintain your rage forever, will you?
........Surely you won’t burn with anger, year after year?

Wouldn’t it be better to put us back on our feet
........and have us trumpeting your goodness?

Let us in on your rock-solid love, LORD.
........Save us and give us a fresh start.

We are eager to hear all you have to say, LORD God,
........for your words bring peace and wellbeing
................to those who stick with you
........................and leave behind their foolish ways.

Surely for all who respect you,
........the life you saved us for is within reach.
................Our land will be ablaze with your presence.

What a life it will be!
........Love and loyalty will link arms;
................justice and peace will become lovers.

Faithfulness will sprout and reach for the sky;
........integrity will beam down on the earth.

You will give us every good thing, LORD,
........and the land will give bumper crops.

Justice and integrity will spring up as you approach,
........lining the road to welcome you among us.

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net



* Colossians 2: 6-15, (16-19)

........Stay on track! You received Christ Jesus the Lord; now follow through on your good start. Put down deep roots and draw on Christ in everything you do. Make Christ the foundation on which you build your lives. See that your faith grows strong and stable, just as you were taught, and you will always be thankful.
........Don’t let anyone entangle you with highfalutin theories and intellectual clap-trap. There are plenty of exotic sounding spiritualities on offer; all claiming to enable you to achieve harmony with the psychic forces or spirit-powers that control the destiny of the cosmos. They contain enough truth to be very persuasive, but they skirt around the truth of Christ. It is in Christ that God is fully present as a human being, and accessible to you. It is in Christ that your progress into the fullness of human potential is made. And it is in Christ that you will find the real nerve centre of the cosmos.
........It is also in Christ that you were marked out as people who belong to God, not by going under the knife in a physical circumcision, but by going under Christ’s knife to have your selfish compulsions cut away. This, of course, was still a physical action, because it was in baptism that your old lives were lowered into the grave with Christ, and it was from the waters of baptism that you were raised, with Christ, to new life; having entrusted yourself to the same life-giving power by which God raised Christ from the dead. Prior to that, you were as good as dead, because your actions and your hearts made it clear that you did not belong to God, but God set about making you fully alive again, together with Christ. God forgave all that you had done wrong, and cancelled out all record of your offences and the punishments pending, by adding it all to the conviction sheet of someone who had already been executed — namely Jesus Christ! Dying and rising, Christ publicly exposed as a sham the claims of the various psychic forces and spirit-powers to be controlling the destiny of the cosmos. Christ’s resurrection triumph made a mockery of them.
........So then, do not let anybody put you down as spiritually inferior for not conforming to their prescriptions about abstaining from certain foods or drinks, or not observing their particular sacred days or festivals. These sorts of things are a bit like travel brochures: they may whet your appetite for what’s ahead, but they are nothing like actually arriving there. Christ is the reality we are looking forward to — the be all and end all — so you can take or leave the various traditions or disciplines that, at best, just point you in the right direction. Do not tolerate anyone advocating that you should be excluded unless you do everything their way and join them in their punishing self-disciplines and their obsession with pandering to angels. They go on and on about how all these things were communicated to them in supernatural visions, but they are a lot of hot air. Their minds are actually stuck in an all-too-human rut because they have lost touch with the nerve-centre of true spirituality, namely Christ. It is only the impulses that come from Christ the head that enable us, the body, to function and grow as a healthy whole in the way God intended for us.

If this paraphrase helped you to make sense of this passage, how about clicking here and helping my little church pay me for six and a half hours it took me to make this much sense of it!

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net



* Luke 11: 1-13

    One day, Jesus had set aside some time and space to pray. When he had finished, one of his followers said to him, “Lord, John taught his followers how to pray. Please do the same for us.”
    So Jesus said to them, “Here is a model prayer for you to use when you pray:

    Father, may your name be kept sacred.
        May everything be brought under your rule.
            Give us enough food for each day.
        Forgive us the things we have done wrong,
            just as we forgive those who owe us anything.
        And don’t push us beyond our limits.”

    Jesus went on to say, “Imagine if friends from out of town dropped in without warning late one night, and you didn’t even have enough in the cupboard to offer them a sandwich. So you knock on your next-door-neighbour’s door and call out, ‘Please be a mate and lend me a few things from your kitchen to feed my unexpected guests.’ But your neighbour yells back from inside saying, ‘Don’t hassle me with your problems. Its after midnight. We’ve already gone to bed and the kids are asleep. There’s no way I’m getting up for you or anyone.’ But let me tell you this; he might not get up and help just because he thinks that’s what mates do, but if you stick to your guns and make a scene for long enough, he will eventually get up and give you whatever you need just to shut you up!
    “So, what I am telling you is this:

    If you want to be given something, keep on asking for it.
    If you want to find something, keep on searching for it.
    If you want a door to open for you, keep on knocking at it.

“That’s the way it is. All who keep on asking will receive. All who keep on searching will find. And all who keep on knocking will have the door opened for them. Think about it. None of you parents would ever put a live snake in your child’s lunch box, would you? If your child asked for a piece of chocolate, you wouldn’t pop a funnel-web in her mouth, would you? You lot might score a lot more points for selfishness than you do for generous love, but you still care enough to want to provide the best for your own children. So surely you can see that God, the ultimate parent, will be all the more eager to give the Holy Spirit to anyone who asks.”

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net



Alternative Hebrew Bible Lections themed to the Gospel Lection

* Genesis 18: 20-32

    The LORD said to Abraham, “The reports I am hearing about the people of Sodom and Gomorrah are full of allegations of callous depravity and corruption. I have decided to go down and see for myself whether the situation is really as horrendous as the reports make out. Perhaps the people are really not so bad, but I need to know.”
    So the visitors set off in the direction of Sodom, leaving Abraham in the presence of the LORD. Abraham turned to the LORD and said, “Surely you wouldn’t just wipe out everybody; the good along with the bad? What if there are fifty decent, honest people in the city? Will you still go ahead and wipe out the city instead of sparing it for the sake of the fifty good people who live there? Far be it from you to be so indiscriminate, to lump the good people in with the evil, and punish them all the same. How could you? You are the one who sits in judgment over all the earth; surely you must be seen to be fair in your own actions.”
    The LORD replied, “If I find fifty decent, honest people in Sodom, I will pardon the whole city for their sake.”
    Abraham spoke up again, saying, “I know I am way out of line challenging you, Lord — mere mortal that I am — but what if the count falls five short? Would five people make such a difference that you would go ahead and destroy the whole city?”
    The LORD replied, “I will hold fire if I find forty-five decent people.”
    Abraham pressed on: “What if you could only find forty there?”
    The LORD replied, “For the sake of forty I will not do it.”
    Then Abraham said, “Forgive me for pushing the issue, Lord, but what if you can only rustle up thirty?”
    The LORD replied, “I will hold fire if I find thirty of them.”
    “Maybe I’m pushing my luck, speaking to you like this, Lord,” said Abraham, “but let’s say you found only twenty. What then?”
    The LORD replied, “For the sake of twenty I will spare the city.”
    Abraham said, “Lord, please don’t be angry with me if I speak one more time; but what if you can find only ten good people in Sodom?”
    “Then for the sake of those ten,” the LORD answered, “I will not destroy the city.”

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net



* Psalm 138

Thank you, LORD, thank you!
........Thank you, from the bottom of my heart!
I will stand and sing your praises
........in the face of every would-be god!

Wherever I am, I turn towards your holy Temple
........and fall to my knees in gratitude,
................thanking you for your rock-solid love and loyalty;
With everything you say and everything you do
........your reputation continues to go through the roof.
The minute I called, you were there for me,
........you put steel in my spine,
................gave me the guts to go on.

When the things you have been saying sink in, LORD,
........all the earth’s powerful rulers will give credit to you.
They’ll join the party, singing and dancing in your honour,
........celebrating the wonderful things you do.

As great as you are,
........you never think of ordinary people as beneath you,
but you don’t waste your time
........on those who are pretentious and stuck-up.

Although I must often walk into dangerous situations,
........you protect me from hatred and hostility;
................your invisible hand is always there, keeping me safe.

You, LORD, have made plans for me
........and you will see them through to completion.
Your love is as timeless and dependable as the rock;
........you have made us what we are
................and you never give up on us.

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net