Evening Prayer | Ordinary Time, Proper 4

OPENING SENTENCES

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.

 

EVENING PSALM

Psalm 44

We have heard with our ears, O God,
our forefathers have told us, *
the deeds you did in their days,
in the days of old.

How with your hand you drove the peoples out
and planted our forefathers in the land; *
how you destroyed nations and made your people flourish.

For they did not take the land by their sword,
nor did their arm win the victory for them; *
but your right hand, your arm, and the
light of your countenance,
because you favored them.

You are my King and my God; *
you command victories for Jacob.

Through you we pushed back our adversaries; *
through your Name we trampled on those who
rose up against us.

For I do not rely on my bow, *
and my sword does not give me the victory.

Surely, you gave us victory over our adversaries *
and put those who hate us to shame.

Every day we gloried in God, *
and we will praise your Name for ever.

Nevertheless, you have rejected and humbled us *
and do not go forth with our armies.

You have made us fall back before our adversary, *
and our enemies have plundered us.

You have made us like sheep to be eaten *
and have scattered us among the nations.

You are selling your people for a trifle *
and are making no profit on the sale of them.

You have made us the scorn of our neighbors, *
a mockery and derision to those around us.

You have made us a byword among the nations, *
a laughing-stock among the peoples.

My humiliation is daily before me, *
and shame has covered my face;

Because of the taunts of the mockers and blasphemers, *
because of the enemy and avenger.

All this has come upon us; *
yet we have not forgotten you,
nor have we betrayed your covenant.

Our heart never turned back, *
nor did our footsteps stray from your path;

Though you thrust us down into a place of misery, *
and covered us over with deep darkness.

If we have forgotten the Name of our God, *
or stretched out our hands to some strange god,

Will not God find it out? *
for he knows the secrets of the heart.

Indeed, for your sake we are killed all the day long; *
we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.

Awake, O Lord! why are you sleeping? *
Arise! do not reject us for ever.

Why have you hidden your face *
and forgotten our affliction and oppression?

We sink down into the dust; *
our body cleaves to the ground.

Rise up, and help us, *
and save us, for the sake of your steadfast love.

 

Lord, rise up and come to our aid. You are the king who knows the secrets of our hearts; fill us with the light of truth and with your strong arm lead us to freedom, as you mightily delivered our ancestors; for the sake of your Son, 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.

 

EVENING SONG

Be Still My Soul - Page CXVI

 

EVENING LESSONS

Ecclesiastes 2:1-15

I said to myself, “Come now, I will make a test of pleasure; enjoy yourself.” But again, this also was vanity. I said of laughter, “It is mad,” and of pleasure, “What use is it?” I searched with my mind how to cheer my body with wine—my mind still guiding me with wisdom—and how to lay hold on folly, until I might see what was good for mortals to do under heaven during the few days of their life. I made great works; I built houses and planted vineyards for myself; I made myself gardens and parks, and planted in them all kinds of fruit trees. I made myself pools from which to water the forest of growing trees. I bought male and female slaves, and had slaves who were born in my house; I also had great possessions of herds and flocks, more than any who had been before me in Jerusalem. I also gathered for myself silver and gold and the treasure of kings and of the provinces; I got singers, both men and women, and delights of the flesh, and many concubines. So I became great and surpassed all who were before me in Jerusalem; also my wisdom remained with me. Whatever my eyes desired I did not keep from them; I kept my heart from no pleasure, for my heart found pleasure in all my toil, and this was my reward for all my toil. Then I considered all that my hands had done and the toil I had spent in doing it, and again, all was vanity and a chasing after wind, and there was nothing to be gained under the sun.

So I turned to consider wisdom and madness and folly; for what can the one do who comes after the king? Only what has already been done. Then I saw that wisdom excels folly as light excels darkness. The wise have eyes in their head, but fools walk in darkness. Yet I perceived that the same fate befalls all of them. Then I said to myself, “What happens to the fool will happen to me also; why then have I been so very wise?” And I said to myself that this also is vanity.

 

Galatians 1:1-17

Paul an apostle—sent neither by human commission nor from human authorities, but through Jesus Christ and God the Father, who raised him from the dead— and all the members of God’s family who are with me, To the churches of Galatia: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins to set us free from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.

I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— not that there is another gospel, but there are some who are confusing you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should proclaim to you a gospel contrary to what we proclaimed to you, let that one be accursed! As we have said before, so now I repeat, if anyone proclaims to you a gospel contrary to what you received, let that one be accursed!

Am I now seeking human approval, or God’s approval? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still pleasing people, I would not be a servant of Christ. For I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that the gospel that was proclaimed by me is not of human origin; for I did not receive it from a human source, nor was I taught it, but I received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ. You have heard, no doubt, of my earlier life in Judaism. I was violently persecuting the church of God and was trying to destroy it. I advanced in Judaism beyond many among my people of the same age, for I was far more zealous for the traditions of my ancestors. But when God, who had set me apart before I was born and called me through his grace, was pleased to reveal his Son to me, so that I might proclaim him among the Gentiles, I did not confer with any human being, nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were already apostles before me, but I went away at once into Arabia, and afterwards I returned to Damascus.

 

CONCLUDING PRAYER

In the evening, pray for:

  • peace
  • individuals and their needs

Conclude with the Lord's Prayer and/or the following Collect:

O God, your never-failing providence sets in order all things both in heaven and earth: Put away from us, we entreat you, all hurtful things, and give us those things which are profitable for us; through Jesus Christ our Lord, 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.