Let my prayer be set forth in your sight as incense, the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice. Psalm 141:2
CONFESSION OF SIN
Most merciful God, we confess that we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We are truly sorry and we humbly repent. For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us; that we may delight in your will, and walk in your ways, to the glory of your Name. Amen.
Evening Examen: When, today, did I sense being drawn away from God? When, today, did I feel most touched by the presence of God?
O God, make speed to save us. *
O Lord, make haste to help us.
Israel made a bull-calf at Horeb *
and worshiped a molten image;
And so they exchanged their Glory *
for the image of an ox that feeds on grass.
They forgot God their Savior, *
who had done great things in Egypt,
Wonderful deeds in the land of Ham, *
and fearful things at the Red Sea.
So he would have destroyed them,
had not Moses his chosen stood before him in the breach, *
to turn away his wrath from consuming them.
They refused the pleasant land *
and would not believe his promise.
They grumbled in their tents *
and would not listen to the voice of the LORD.
So he lifted his hand against them, *
to overthrow them in the wilderness,
To cast out their seed among the nations, *
and to scatter them throughout the lands.
They joined themselves to Baal-Peor *
and ate sacrifices offered to the dead.
They provoked him to anger with their actions, *
and a plague broke out among them.
Then Phinehas stood up and interceded, *
and the plague came to an end.
This was reckoned to him as righteousness *
throughout all generations for ever.
Again they provoked his anger at the waters of Meribah, *
so that he punished Moses because of them;
For they so embittered his spirit *
that he spoke rash words with his lips.
They did not destroy the peoples *
as the LORD had commanded them.
They intermingled with the heathen *
and learned their pagan ways,
So that they worshiped their idols, *
which became a snare to them.
They sacrificed their sons *
and their daughters to evil spirits.
They shed innocent blood,
the blood of their sons and daughters, *
which they offered to the idols of Canaan,
and the land was defiled with blood.
Thus they were polluted by their actions *
and went whoring in their evil deeds.
Therefore the wrath of the LORD was kindled against his people *
and he abhorred his inheritance.
He gave them over to the hand of the heathen, *
and those who hated them ruled over them.
Their enemies oppressed them, *
and they were humbled under their hand.
Many a time did he deliver them,
but they rebelled through their own devices, *
and were brought down in their iniquity.
Nevertheless, he saw their distress, *
when he heard their lamentation.
He remembered his covenant with them *
and relented in accordance with his great mercy.
He caused them to be pitied *
by those who held them captive.
Save us, O LORD our God,
and gather us from among the nations, *
that we may give thanks to your holy Name
and glory in your praise.
Blessed be the LORD, the God of Israel,
from everlasting to everlasting; *
and let all the people say, "Amen!"
God our Father, remembering your covenant, you graciously pardoned those who rebelled against you. Grant that, where sin abounds, grace may abound more; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit; *
as it was in the beginning
is now and shall be for ever. Amen.
2 KINGS 21:1-18
Manasseh was twelve years old when he began to reign; he reigned fifty-five years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Hephzibah. He did what was evil in the sight of the Lord, following the abominable practices of the nations that the Lord drove out before the people of Israel. For he rebuilt the high places that his father Hezekiah had destroyed; he erected altars for Baal, made a sacred pole, as King Ahab of Israel had done, worshiped all the host of heaven, and served them. He built altars in the house of the Lord, of which the Lord had said, “In Jerusalem I will put my name.” He built altars for all the host of heaven in the two courts of the house of the Lord. He made his son pass through fire; he practiced soothsaying and augury, and dealt with mediums and with wizards. He did much evil in the sight of the Lord, provoking him to anger. The carved image of Asherah that he had made he set in the house of which the Lord said to David and to his son Solomon, “In this house, and in Jerusalem, which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, I will put my name forever; I will not cause the feet of Israel to wander any more out of the land that I gave to their ancestors, if only they will be careful to do according to all that I have commanded them, and according to all the law that my servant Moses commanded them.” But they did not listen; Manasseh misled them to do more evil than the nations had done that the Lord destroyed before the people of Israel.
The Lord said by his servants the prophets, “Because King Manasseh of Judah has committed these abominations, has done things more wicked than all that the Amorites did, who were before him, and has caused Judah also to sin with his idols; therefore thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, I am bringing upon Jerusalem and Judah such evil that the ears of everyone who hears of it will tingle. I will stretch over Jerusalem the measuring line for Samaria, and the plummet for the house of Ahab; I will wipe Jerusalem as one wipes a dish, wiping it and turning it upside down. I will cast off the remnant of my heritage, and give them into the hand of their enemies; they shall become a prey and a spoil to all their enemies, because they have done what is evil in my sight and have provoked me to anger, since the day their ancestors came out of Egypt, even to this day.” Moreover Manasseh shed very much innocent blood, until he had filled Jerusalem from one end to another, besides the sin that he caused Judah to sin so that they did what was evil in the sight of the Lord. Now the rest of the acts of Manasseh, all that he did, and the sin that he committed, are they not written in the Book of the Annals of the Kings of Judah? Manasseh slept with his ancestors, and was buried in the garden of his house, in the garden of Uzza. His son Amon succeeded him.
1 Corinthians 10:14—11:1
Therefore, my dear friends, flee from the worship of idols.
I speak as to sensible people; judge for yourselves what I say. The cup of blessing that we bless, is it not a sharing in the blood of Christ? The bread that we break, is it not a sharing in the body of Christ? Because there is one bread, we who are many are one body, for we all partake of the one bread. Consider the people of Israel; are not those who eat the sacrifices partners in the altar? What do I imply then? That food sacrificed to idols is anything, or that an idol is anything? No, I imply that what pagans sacrifice, they sacrifice to demons and not to God. I do not want you to be partners with demons. You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons. You cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons. Or are we provoking the Lord to jealousy? Are we stronger than he?
“All things are lawful,” but not all things are beneficial. “All things are lawful,” but not all things build up. Do not seek your own advantage, but that of the other. Eat whatever is sold in the meat market without raising any question on the ground of conscience, for “the earth and its fullness are the Lord’s.” If an unbeliever invites you to a meal and you are disposed to go, eat whatever is set before you without raising any question on the ground of conscience. But if someone says to you, “This has been offered in sacrifice,” then do not eat it, out of consideration for the one who informed you, and for the sake of conscience— I mean the other’s conscience, not your own. For why should my liberty be subject to the judgment of someone else’s conscience? If I partake with thankfulness, why should I be denounced because of that for which I give thanks? So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God. Give no offense to Jews or to Greeks or to the church of God, just as I try to please everyone in everything I do, not seeking my own advantage, but that of many, so that they may be saved.
Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ.
This week, pray especially for:
- peace in our relationships
- our neighbors and neighborhoods
- the persecuted Church
Conclude with the Lord's Prayer and/or the following Collect:
Almighty and everlasting God, you are always more ready to hear than we to pray, and to give more than we either desire or deserve: Pour upon us the abundance of your mercy, forgiving us those things of which our conscience is afraid, and giving us those good things for which we are not worthy to ask, except through the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ our Savior; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Let us bless the Lord. *
Thanks be to God!
The Almighty and merciful Lord, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, bless us and keep us. Amen.