Year C
Proper 21
Sunday 29 September 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,
for you alone are the blessed immortal sovereign
who dwells in unapproachable light.

In the shadow of your wing,
you created the earth and gave life to all things.
Through Moses and the prophets you called us
to take hold of the life that really is life.

When our own harmful desires plunged us into destruction,
and we gazed across a great chasm
hungering for even the crumbs that fell from your table,
you sealed a promise that our homelands
would once again feed and clothe us.
You sent your child, Jesus Christ.
to show us your power to save.
After testifying to the truth before Pontius Pilate,
he was killed, but you raised him from the dead,
and now he seats us at your banquet table,
and richly provides us with everything for fullness of life.

Therefore with .....

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




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

We thank you that when we were gazing across a great chasm
hungering for even the crumbs that fell from your table,
you sent your son, Jesus Christ, to seat us at your banquet table
and richly provide us with everything for our enjoyment.

©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,
for you alone are the blessed immortal sovereign
who dwells in unapproachable light.

In the shadow of your wing,
you created the earth and gave life to all things.
Through Moses and the prophets you called us
to take hold of the life that really is life.

When our own harmful desires plunged us into destruction,
and we gazed across a great chasm
hungering for even the crumbs that fell from your table,
you sealed a promise that our homelands
would once again feed and clothe us.
You sent your child, Jesus Christ.
to show us your power to save.
After testifying to the truth before Pontius Pilate,
he was killed, but you raised him from the dead,
and now he seats us at your banquet table,
and richly provides us with everything for fullness of life.

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

Hear the words of Christ who is merciful:
“I deliver all who cling to me,
answer those who call me,
stand with those in trouble.
These I rescue and honour and show my power to save.”

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

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net





Commission & Benediction

Go now and take hold of the life that really is life.
Shun the eagerness for money
but be rich in good works.
Pursue righteousness, godliness,
faith, love, endurance and gentleness.

And may God be your refuge and fortress;
May Christ Jesus free you from all that ensnares you;
And may the Holy Spirit provide you with everything
   for godliness and contentment.

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 21 - Year C - Sunday 29 September 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.



* Jeremiah 32: 1-3a, 6-15

   I, Jeremiah, received a message from the LORD. At the time, the Babylonian army was laying siege to Jerusalem. They were under the command of Nebuchadrezzar, who had been king of Babylon for eighteen years. I was locked up in the guardhouse of the Jerusalem palace on the orders of Zedekiah, who had been king of Judah for ten years. The message from the LORD said:
“Jeremiah! Your cousin, Hanamel, son of Shallum, is on his way to see you. He will ask you to buy his ancestral property at Anathoth because he can no longer afford to keep it. As his nearest relative, you have the right to buy it in order to keep it in the family.”

Just as the LORD had said, my cousin Hanamel came to visit me in the guardhouse and said to me, “I want to sell you my ancestral property at Anathoth in the territory of Benjamin. The only way it can stay in our family is for you to exercise your right to buy it for yourself.”
    When this happened, I knew that the message I had heard was from the LORD, so I went ahead and bought the Anathoth property from Hanamel for the agreed price of seventeen pieces of silver. We had the legal document drawn up, confirming the terms and conditions of the sale and transferring the title to me. When the document had been formally signed and witnessed, I counted out the money and handed it to Hanamel. Then I took both the official copy of the document and a duplicate and handed them to Baruch. Baruch was the son of Neriah and grandson of Mahseiah, and worked for me as my secretary. While Hanamel and the witness were still there, and in the clear hearing of all the other Judeans who were at the guardhouse, I said to Baruch:

This is an order from the LORD who rules over everything, the God of Israel: Take these property documents, both the official signed copy and its duplicate, and store them in a sealed time capsule so that they will last for a long time. Because the LORD who rules over everything, the God of Israel, is making this promise: “Although you are being overrun by invading armies, the time will come when you will once again own houses, farms and vineyards in this land.”
©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




* Psalm 91: 1-6, 14-16

Your greatness and strength are our shelter, LORD;
........we can live secure in your shade.
We call you our refuge, our place of safety;
........you are the God in whom we trust.

You steer us clear of the traps that have been laid for us,
........and keep us safe when disease threatens to wipe us out.
You gather us safely under your wings
........like a mother bird shielding her chicks.
........We are secure behind your armour-plated loyalty.

Night or day, we have nothing to fear;
........not bullets, nor bombs;
........not illness, nor injury;
........not the withering heat of the sun,
........nor the crippling power of fear itself.

Those who know you and love you can depend on you,
........you are always there to pull them out of trouble.

The moment they call, you answer;
........you’re on their side when all hell breaks loose;
........you save their lives and throw a party in their honour.

You give them long and fulfilling lives, LORD;
........they will see the realisation of all you have promised.

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




* 1 Timothy 6: 6-19

........The keys to a truly rich life are to model yourself on God and to find contentment in simple things. When it comes to the things money can buy, we all have to leave this world as empty-handed as we entered it, so if we’ve got food on our tables and clothes on our backs, we are as rich as we’ll ever need to be. People who set their hearts on becoming very wealthy are their own worst enemies. They charge headlong into a mine field of inflated expectations and mind-numbing promises and they are easily seduced onto slippery slopes that end only in corruption and ruin. There are so many forms of evil that can be traced back to a passion for money, and there have been so many people whose craving for wealth has eroded their commitment to Christ and brought them nothing but pain and misery.
........But you, Timothy, are a man who belongs to God; so steer well clear of such things. Instead, work hard at modelling yourself on God and developing your abilities to do the right thing, to trust God no matter what, to tough out the hard times, and to be consistently loving and compassionate. The life to which you have been called — the life without limit — is not gained without struggle. You went public in declaring your commitment to this cause, so fight hard and fair for it, trusting always in God, and the prize will be yours.
Standing now in the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus, who spoke up for the truth in front of Pontius Pilate, I am reminding you of your mandate: follow through to the max on all you have been told to do. See that none of your work gives anyone cause to point an accusing finger. And keep at it until our Lord Jesus Christ steps back onto centre stage, as he will when God decides the time is right.
God alone deserves all praise!
........God alone rules over all!
God far outranks every monarch and lord;
........every chief, commander, and regime!
God alone lives beyond the reach of death,
........hidden from every human eye
................by blazing light that holds us at bay!
To God, honour and glory!
........To God, power over all, forever!
................And so say all of us!
........Pass on some advice from me to those who are wealthy in the here and now. Tell them not to go getting full of themselves, or to fall for the idea that their money guarantees their quality of life — it could all be worthless tomorrow. Tell them, instead, to stake their future on God, for everything we need to enjoy a truly rich life is given to us by God. Teach them that if they really want to set themselves up for the future, they should invest heavily in doing good for others and build up a portfolio based on blue-chip sharing and generosity. That is the only way to achieve the goal of gaining shares in the life that is really worth living.

If this paraphrase has helped you with this passage, how about clicking here and helping my little church pay me for five hours it took me to produce it!

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




* Luke 16: 19-31

While speaking to some devoutly religious Pharisees who loved money, Jesus told this story:
    There was a rich man who was always dressed to the nines in the most expensive fashions and who enjoyed chef-prepared, gourmet delicacies for breakfast, lunch and tea. In the street outside his security gates, lived a desperately poor man named Lazarus. He was malnourished and sleeping rough, and his skin was scabby and infected. All he ever ate was the scraps thrown out in the rich man’s garbage. Often he was too weak even to stop the dogs from licking his sores.
    One day this poor man died and was carried away by the angels and seated alongside Abraham at the best table. The rich man also died and was given a rich man’s burial. However, in the land of the dead he found himself suffering horribly. He looked up, and far in the distance he could see Abraham with Lazarus seated alongside him. In desperation he called out, “Father Abraham, take pity on me and send Lazarus to bring me even a drop of water to cool my tongue. I am in agony here in these flames.”
    But Abraham said, “Son, remember how life was a bed of roses for you, but Lazarus always copped the worst that life could dish up. Well here the tables have been turned. Besides, there is nothing we can do anyway. Can’t you see how we are cut off from you by this massive chasm. No one can get across from here to you, and you can’t get across from there to us.”
    The rich man said, “In that case, Father, please send him to my family home to warn my five brothers so that they won’t go down the same track as me and end up here in this nightmare too.”
    Abraham replied, “They have heard the teachings of Moses and the prophets. That should be all the warning they need.”
    He replied, “It hasn’t sunk in though, Father Abraham. But if someone was to come back from the dead to warn them, then they’d turn their lives around for sure.”
    But Abraham said to him, “If they won’t take any notice of Moses and the prophets, then even someone rising from the dead wouldn’t be enough to get through to them.”

©2001 Nathan Nettleton 
LaughingBird.net



Alternative Hebrew Bible Lections themed to the Gospel Lection


* Amos 6: 1a, 4-7

The writing is on the wall for those who are living it up in the city;
    for those who think that no harm can reach them in this town.

The writing is on the wall for those who spend their days
    lounging around in pampered luxury;
dining on the finest delicacies
    like there was no tomorrow;
singing and dancing while others suffer,
    partying on while others starve.

The writing is on the wall for those
    who care more about the temperature of their chardonnay
        and the matching of clothes and cosmetics
    than they do about the desperate plight
        of the poor who live in their land!

They’ve got it coming to them.
    They will be the first to be driven into refugee camps.
        Their cushy comforts will be nothing but a memory.

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




* Psalm 146

You are the best, LORD!
........With all my heart I sing your praises.
I will never stop talking you up;
........I won’t stop spruiking your goodness till the day I die.

There is no one but you that we can depend on, LORD;
........not experts, not leaders, no one.
No human being can give what we most need;
........no matter what their plans and schemes promise,
................the minute they’re gone, their promises die with them.

But we hit the jackpot when we look to you for help, LORD;
........when we put all our hopes in you — the God of our ancestors.
You are the one who made earth and sky,
........who poured out the seas and filled them with life.
You are true to your word no matter what;
........when people are ground into the dirt, you bring about justice;
................when people are left to starve, you come with food.

You, LORD, set the prisoners free.
........You, LORD, open the eyes of those who can’t see.
You, LORD, put the downtrodden back on their feet.

You, LORD, love those who do the right thing.
........You, LORD, keep a caring eye on the asylum seekers.
You stick up for those who have no one else to stick up for them,
........but you make the schemes of the corrupt backfire on them.

Take charge forever, LORD,
........rule from your sacred Mountain for all time.
You’re the best, LORD. We’re with you all the way!

©2000 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net