Weekly Online Service
25 October 2020 The Last Sunday after Trinity

Please find below our service for this week. You can also click on the PDF button to open and download a copy of the printed generic Service booklet.

You will find an opening hymn - words are included. This is followed by the service. Finally there is a closing hymn. Please feel free to follow along in whichever way you feel most comfortable. Words in bold are for everyone to join in.

Hymn

Come down, O Love divine

Come down, O Love divine,
seek thou this soul of mine,
and visit it with thine own ardour glowing;
O Comforter, draw near,
within my heart appear,
and kindle it, thy holy flame bestowing.

O let it freely burn,
till earthly passions turn
to dust and ashes in its heat consuming;
and let thy glorious light
shine ever on my sight,
and clothe me round, the while my path illuming.

Let holy charity
mine outward vesture be,
and lowliness become mine inner clothing:
true lowliness of heart,
which takes the humbler part,
and o’er its own shortcomings weeps with loathing.

And so the yearning strong,
with which the soul will long,
shall far outpass the power of human telling;
for none can guess its grace,
till he become the place
wherein the Holy Spirit makes his dwelling.

Service Audio

In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit

All say Amen.

Grace, mercy and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ be with you

and also with you.

Almighty God,
to whom all hearts are open, all desires known,
and from whom no secrets are hidden:
cleanse the thoughts of our hearts
by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit,
that we may perfectly love you,
and worthily magnify your holy name;
through Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Prayers of Penitence

God so loved the world that he gave his only Son Jesus Christ to save us from our sins, to be our advocate in heaven, and to bring us to eternal life.

Let us confess our sins in penitence and faith, firmly resolved to keep God’s commandments and to live in love and peace with all.

Almighty God, our heavenly Father,
we have sinned against you
and against our neighbour
in thought and word and deed,
through negligence, through weakness,
through our own deliberate fault.
We are truly sorry and repent of all our sins.
For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ,
who died for us, forgive us all that is past
and grant that we may serve you in newness of life
to the glory of your name.  Amen.

Almighty God,
who forgives all who truly repent,
have mercy upon you,
pardon and deliver you from all your sins,
confirm and strengthen you in all goodness,
and keep you in life eternal;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Gloria in Excelcis

Glory to God, Glory to God,
Glory to God in the highest.

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.

Glory to God, Glory to God,
Glory to God in the highest.

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.

Glory to God, Glory to God,
Glory to God in the highest.

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.

Glory to God, Glory to God,
Glory to God in the highest.

The Collect of the Day is said or sung.

Blessed Lord, who hast caused all holy Scriptures to be written for our learning: grant that we may in such wise hear them, read, mark, learn and inwardly digest them, that by patience and comfort of thy holy word, we may embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of everlasting life, which thou hast given us in our Saviour Jesus Christ, who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

The Old and New Testament Readings

Deuteronomy 34.1–12 - Read by Katie Smart

Then Moses went up from the plains of Moab to Mount Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, which is opposite Jericho, and the Lord showed him the whole land: Gilead as far as Dan, 2 all Naphtali, the land of Ephraim and Manasseh, all the land of Judah as far as the Western Sea, 3 the Negeb, and the Plain—that is, the valley of Jericho, the city of palm trees—as far as Zoar. 4 The Lord said to him, ‘This is the land of which I swore to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, saying, “I will give it to your descendants”; I have let you see it with your eyes, but you shall not cross over there.’ 5 Then Moses, the servant of the Lord, died there in the land of Moab, at the Lord’s command. 6 He was buried in a valley in the land of Moab, opposite Beth-peor, but no one knows his burial place to this day. 7 Moses was one hundred and twenty years old when he died; his sight was unimpaired and his vigour had not abated. 8 The Israelites wept for Moses in the plains of Moab for thirty days; then the period of mourning for Moses was ended.

9 Joshua son of Nun was full of the spirit of wisdom, because Moses had laid his hands on him; and the Israelites obeyed him, doing as the Lord had commanded Moses.

10 Never since has there arisen a prophet in Israel like Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face. 11 He was unequalled for all the signs and wonders that the Lord sent him to perform in the land of Egypt, against Pharaoh and all his servants and his entire land, 12 and for all the mighty deeds and all the terrifying displays of power that Moses performed in the sight of all Israel.

This is the word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

1 Thessalonians 2.1–8 - Read by Terry Wingrove

You yourselves know, brothers and sisters, that our coming to you was not in vain, 2 but though we had already suffered and been shamefully maltreated at Philippi, as you know, we had courage in our God to declare to you the gospel of God in spite of great opposition. 3 For our appeal does not spring from deceit or impure motives or trickery, 4 but just as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the message of the gospel, even so we speak, not to please mortals, but to please God who tests our hearts. 5 As you know and as God is our witness, we never came with words of flattery or with a pretext for greed; 6 nor did we seek praise from mortals, whether from you or from others, 7though we might have made demands as apostles of Christ. But we were gentle among you, like a nurse tenderly caring for her own children. 8 So deeply do we care for you that we are determined to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you have become very dear to us.

This is the word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

The Gospel

Matthew 22.34–46 - Read by Jean McDonald

All sing: Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!

The Gospel reader says

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Matthew

All say: Glory to you, O Lord.

When the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together, 35 and one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. 36 ‘Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?’ 37 He said to him, ‘ “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.” 38 This is the greatest and first commandment. 39 And a second is like it: “You shall love your neighbour as yourself.” 40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.’

41 Now while the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them this question: 42 ‘What do you think of the Messiah? Whose son is he?’ They said to him, ‘The son of David.’ 43 He said to them, ‘How is it then that David by the Spirit calls him Lord, saying,
44 “The Lord said to my Lord,
‘Sit at my right hand,
   until I put your enemies under your feet’ ”?
45 If David thus calls him Lord, how can he be his son?’ 46 No one was able to give him an answer, nor from that day did anyone dare to ask him any more questions.

This is the gospel of the Lord.

All say: Praise to you, O Christ.

All sing: Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!

Sermon

Is the Messiah a priest or king, and whose son is he?

Matthew 22.34–46

2020-10-25 Finish lineSo near and so far, it was almost touching distance, only twenty nine thousanths of a second and he would have won the formula one race. I am amazed in sport at just how small the difference is between winning and coming second. But that is not the only field in which it matters. Success in any field takes dedication, hard work and a shed load of inspiration. Something that Moses discovered millennia before.

There he was standing high on the mountaintop, he could almost touch it, the Promised Land. A land with flowing water, a fertile land, a land rich with minerals and there it was, laid out before him, just across the river; he could see it all, smell it but not stand on it; it was so near but so far. Joshua who had been prepared well, waited ready to cross the Jordan and bring his people home.

God’s liberator, had been born a slave, adopted as a prince, he became a murderer and refugee: Moses had done what God had told him to do, even if at times reluctantly and needing a push in the right direction. We might think, after all Moses had achieved for God and his chosen people, he would have, at the very least, stepped onto his dream homeland. But God had another agenda that was to take centuries to unfold and the memories of Moses and the Exodus would remain constant throughout. No one would equal him as prophet until Elijah and no one bring us closer to God until Jesus himself.

At times we can all find keeping to the rules difficult. From childhood we learn that our actions have consequences and sometimes they also carry a punishment. It has been said that the commandments are impossible to keep, for Jewish people there were 613, and they were designed that way to make room for God’s grace.

It was to Moses that God gifted the commandments, and we discover in the gospels the limitations of the Law. Jesus was constantly being challenged by the scholars of his day. Was it ok to heal the sick on the Sabbath, did that constitute work? Picking fruit from a tree on the Sabbath, was it lawful? What about a widower who had remarried, who would be his wife after the resurrection? And what about paying taxes to the Roman Empire? Using words from Israel’s creed (the Shema), Jesus silenced his critics with wisdom and love, gifting us the Two Great Commandments; Love God and Love your Neighbour. He would go on to gift himself, as did Paul, in pastoral care, love and finally with his life.

The Law of Moses was a defining feature of Israel’s identity, and for a Pharisee this meant that it was exclusive. Jesus reminded them that the heart of Israel’s Law was love for all and it would mean their special relationship with God was no longer for them alone; this would have caused a seismic shift in their understanding. Israel existed for the sake of the world and not the other way about.

At the end of the conversation with the Pharisees Jesus posed a question of his own; “What do you think of the Messiah? Whose son is he?” It was one of those questions that leave us in a quandary. To answer was impossible for the Pharisees without seeming absolutely wrong or absolutely insane, and so it remained firmly unanswered.

Is the Messiah a priest or king, and whose son is he? If we look at Psalm 110 we discover the dilemma that had already been around for two centuries before Jesus’ day? The status of kings and priests was a real issue and Jesus develops the scriptures to define a theological argument that rocked the Temple priesthood and the kingship of Herod’s dynasty. It was only after people began to realise that he, Jesus was both, then they could appreciate that the Law could only take them so far. They needed a new Joshua to take them to a new home.

We, two thousand years later, have the same questions to answer, what and who is Jesus? Generations of young people at St Marys, preparing for their confirmation, spent weeks reading and reflecting on what Christians believe and we all need to regularly refine our own understanding as we develop and grow in faith. Paul recognised this and taught that the early church needed to lose the mind-set of being slaves and think beyond their personal circumstances. This still applies today.

Paul linked the history of Israel, the ‘Law’ and the prophets, and offered Jesus as the new Moses. A sacrifice bringing his people back to God and that this was not limited to Jewish people alone. He described the Church as ‘the body of Christ’, and how it needed to use the Spiritual gifts of its individual members to bring together a response to God - of worship and praise - worthy of the King and his Kingdom. Paul in his letter to the Romans - displayed God’s limitless love for the whole of creation. Jesus, because of his humanity, gave a perfect example of how we are to respond to infinite love, with complete and unconditional love for God and neighbour.

Two thousand years later Paul’s message of God’s limitless love for his creation and Paul’s own love for them is just as relevant to us as it was to the Thessalonian church. We too are challenged to look beyond our present circumstances and live the Kingdom life in the here and now.

And so when our obituary is written let us pray that we will win the prize, crossing over into the new land of promise, and we meet our Lord face-to-face, in the light of a life lived in love of God and our neighbour, may we be able to say without hesitation “You are the Messiah, Son of the living God, who knows me and loves me for who I am”

Amen.

The Rev’d Maureen Lunn, St Mary Magdalene, Enfield, 25/10/2020

Service Audio

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,
was incarnate from the Holy Spirit
and 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,
who with the Father and the Son
is worshipped and glorified,
who 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.

The Intercessions 

The Intercessions list has been circulated with petitions for the Church, The World, The Community, Our Keyworkers, The Sick and the Deceased. The Diocesan Cycle of Prayer is found at:

London Anglican Cycle of Prayer

This or another response may be used:

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

In the power of the Spirit and in union with Christ, let us pray to the Father.

Almighty God, our heavenly Father, you promised through your Son Jesus Christ to hear us when we pray in faith.

Strengthen N our bishop(s) and all your Church in the service of Christ, that those who confess your name may be united in your truth,
live together in your love, and reveal your glory in the world.

Bless and guide Elizabeth our Queen; give wisdom to all in authority;
and direct this and every nation in the ways of justice and of peace;
that we may honour one another, and seek the common good.

Give grace to us, our families and friends, and to all our neighbours,
that we may serve Christ in one another, and love as he loves us.

Comfort and heal all those who suffer in body, mind, or spirit …;
give them courage and hope in their troubles; and bring them the joy of your salvation.

Hear us as we remember those who have died in the faith of Christ …; according to your promises, grant us with them a share in your eternal kingdom.

Rejoicing in the fellowship of all your saints, we commend ourselves and the whole creation to your unfailing love.

Merciful Father, accept these prayers for the sake of your Son, our Saviour Jesus Christ.  Amen.

The Peace

We are the body of Christ.
In the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body.
Let us then pursue all that makes for peace and builds up our common life.

The peace of the Lord be always with you.

and also with you.

A sign of peace may be exchanged.

As our Saviour taught us, so we pray.

Service Audio

The Blessing

The peace of God,
which passes all understanding,
keep your hearts and minds
in the knowledge and love of God,
and of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord;
and the blessing of God almighty,
the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
be among you and remain with you always. Amen.

The Dismissal

Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.

In the name of Christ.  Amen.

Recessional Hymn

Your hand, O God, has guided

Your hand, O God, has guided
your flock, from age to age;
die wondrous tale is written,
full clear, on every page;
your people owned your goodness,
and we their deeds record;
and both of this bear witness;
one Church, one Faith, one Lord.

Your heralds brought glad tidings
to greatest as to least;
they summoned all to hasten
and share the great King’s feast;
and this was all their teaching,
in every deed and word,
to all alike proclaiming:
one Church, one Faith, one Lord.

Your mercy will not fail us,
nor leave your work undone;
with your right hand to help us,
your victory shall be won;
by mortals and by angels
your name shall be adored,
and this shall be their anthem:
one Church, one faith, one Lord.

Material from Common Worship 2000 is included in this service and is copyright © The Central Board of Finance of the Church of England.