Year A
Proper 14
Sunday 9 August 2020



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 are Lord of all, without distinction
and you are generous to all who call on you.

In the first of your mighty wonders
you calmed the chaos and created a planet full of life.
You chose a people to carry your good news to the world,
and worked even through their acts of hatred and betrayal
to bring about your salvation.

So too when your child, Jesus,
was rejected and cast into the pit of death,
you raised him from the dead
and now save all who call on his name in faith.
Coming to us amidst the storms of destruction,
he pulls us up from the despair that would swallow us
and with a word, brings his terrifying peace,
bringing us to our knees in worship, saying,
“Truly you are the Son of God!”
Therefore with .....

©2002 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




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

We give you thanks for your child, Jesus,
who comes to us amidst the storms of destruction,
pulling us up from the despair that would swallow us
and with a word, brings his terrifying peace.

©2002 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 are Lord of all, without distinction
and you are generous to all who call on you.

In the first of your mighty wonders
you calmed the chaos and created a planet full of life.
You chose a people to carry your good news to the world,
and worked even through their acts of hatred and betrayal
to bring about your salvation.

So too when your child, Jesus,
was rejected and cast into the pit of death,
you raised him from the dead
and now save all who call on his name in faith.
Coming to us amidst the storms of destruction,
he pulls us up from the despair that would swallow us
and with a word, brings his terrifying peace,
bringing us to our knees in worship, saying,
“Truly you are the Son of 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.

©2002 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net





Declaration of Grace / Absolution

God has promised that all who call on the name of Christ,
confessing him to be Lord and trusting in his resurrection,
will be saved.
Through your faith, God has declared you to be righteous.

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

©2002 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net





Commission & Benediction

Go now and live in the righteousness that comes from faith.
Delight in seeking the Lord.
Recount what God has done
and proclaim the good news of Christ
so that all may hear and believe and be saved.

And may the power of the presence of God be with you.
May Christ’s word be near you,
   on your lips and in your heart.
And may the Holy Spirit give you courage
   and calm all your fears.

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

©2002 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net







Paraphrases of the Scripture Lections
for Proper 14 - Year A - Sunday 9 August 2020
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.



* Genesis 37: 1-4, 12-28

    This is the story of the family of Jacob, who made his home in the land of Canaan where his father had settled as a migrant.
    Jacob and his four wives had many children, but his favourite was Joseph who had been born to him when he was already an old man. When Joseph was seventeen years old, he was working with four of his brothers herding sheep, and he dobbed them in to their father over some things they did wrong. Joseph was already offside with his brothers because of the favouritism their father showed him. They were especially galled that Jacob had singled out Joseph with a gift of a very classy coat. Things got to the stage where his brothers hated him and couldn’t say a civil word to him.
    On one occasion, Joseph had stayed at home while the rest of his brothers went droving towards Shechem in search of good pasture for the sheep. Jacob called Joseph and said, “I’ve got a job for you.”
    “No worries. I’m free,” said Joseph.
    “Your brothers are droving the sheep out near Shechem,” said Jacob. “Go and track them down and see if all is well with them and the sheep, and then come back and let me know.”
    So Joseph headed off from the Hebron Valley and began his search. While he was hunting high and low around Shechem, a man asked him what he was looking for, and he replied, “I am looking for my brothers who are droving sheep out this way. Can you tell me where they might be?”
    The man replied, “They were here, but they are gone. They said they were going out Dothan way.”
    So Joseph headed off on the trail of his brothers and found them out at Dothan. They saw him coming from a distance, and before he arrived, they put their heads together and plotted murder. They said to one another, “Here he comes; the one who dreams of lording it over us. Let’s knock him off and dump his body down a mine shaft. We can report that a wild animal dragged him off. Let’s see what comes of his dreams then!”
    But when Reuben heard what they were up to, he stepped in to spare Joseph, saying, “Let’s not kill him. We don’t want his blood on our conscience. Why don’t we just put him down a mine shaft out here in the desert and leave him there?”
    Reuben was actually thinking that he could make a hero of himself by coming back later and taking Joseph home to his father, but the suggestion seemed good to his brothers. So when Joseph pulled up alongside them, they tore off his coat — the classy coat that he like to strut around in — and dropped him down an empty mine shaft. There was no water in the mine shaft, but there was no way out either.
    A short time later, as they were sitting down eating lunch, they saw a convoy of Ishmaelite traders coming from Gilead. Their camels were loaded up with raw materials bound for processing in Egypt. Seeing them, Judah said to his brothers, “Hey, we could do better for ourselves than killing our brother and having to dispose of his body. We could make a nice profit on him if we sold him to the Ishmaelite traders. Then we wouldn’t have to live with the thought of having killed one of our own flesh and blood.”
    The rest of the brothers were all in favour of this idea, so they flagged down the traders and struck a deal with them. They pulled Joseph out of the mine shaft and sold him to the Ishmaelites for twenty pieces of silver. The Ishmaelite traders took Joseph to Egypt where they sold him in the slave markets.

©2002 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




* Psalm 105: 1-6, 16-22, 45c

We shout your name and give you thanks, LORD;
........we will tell everyone what you have done for us.
We sing your praises in your presence,
........and publicise your wonderful achievements.

We put your name up in lights, your name alone;
........our hearts burst with joy when we approach you.
It is you we want most of all, you and your strength;
........we try to keep near to you all the time.

Like all the descendants of Abraham and Jacob,
........and all your chosen children,
we remember all the astonishing things you have done
........and the breath-taking wisdom of your decisions.

When you sent a famine on the land,
........destroying the crops and breaking the food cycle,
you had already sent a man ahead to provide help:
........Joseph, who had been sold as a slave.

He had been dragged off in leg irons,
........and chained by the neck.
You spoke to him, challenging him to tough it out,
........until eventually his own words came true.

Sure enough, the Pharaoh ordered his release;
........the most powerful man on earth set him free.
Pharaoh put him in charge of the palace,
........and made him the manager of all his possessions.
He gave him authority over all other officials,
........to tell them what to do and how to do it.

You are the greatest, LORD!

©2002 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




* Romans 10: 5-15

........Moses said that to put yourself in the right by obeying the law, you would have to resolutely obey every bit of it. But if you are put right by trusting God, it is quite a different matter. Those who trust God don’t need to devise arduous schemes to save themselves by scaling the heights of heaven to collect Christ, or storming the gates of hell to bring him up to us from the dead. Rather they experience what the scriptures promised:

“The Word that saves is with you;
........it is on the tip of your tongue;
........it is beating in your heart.”
This is exactly the message we’ve been preaching: it’s all about trust. If you put that trust into words, declaring that Jesus is the one you answer to; and embrace that trust in your heart, believing that Jesus lives because God raised him from the dead, then you will be put back on the right track with God. That’s what salvation is! When anyone allows that trust in God to rewrite basic beliefs they live by, their heart is put right with God; and when those rewritten beliefs are expressed openly in what they say and do, then you know they are safely in God’s care. The scriptures back this up, saying, “No one who trusts God will ever be let down.” Your ethnic or religious background makes no difference in this: there is only one God, and that one God has the last word on everyone. God is equally generous to all those who call out in trust for help. As the saying goes, “Anyone who wants help from God only has to ask.”
........But think about it for a moment. How is anyone going to ask for help if they don’t know who to ask? And how are they going to know who to ask if they haven’t even heard of the One who can be trusted? And how are they going to hear unless someone comes to tell them? And how is anyone going to come and tell them if no one is sent to tell them? As the scriptures say:
“What a sight for sore eyes is the arrival of those
........who come to tell us the good news about God!”

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




* Matthew 14: 22-33

    Jesus loaded all his closest followers into the same boat and pushed them off, telling them to go on across the sea while he dismissed the crowds of people he had just fed. After sending the crowds on their way, he climbed up the mountain by himself so that he could be alone to pray. As the night closed in, he was still there by himself, but the boat was now a long way out from land, battling a head wind and getting badly bashed up by the waves. Just a few hours before sunrise, Jesus came striding towards them, trampling over the raging sea. But when his followers saw him walking on the sea, they thought he was a ghost, and panicked, screaming in terror. Jesus spoke up straight away, and said, “Get a grip on yourselves. Can’t you see who I am?! You’ve got nothing to worry about.”
    Peter called back, “Lord, if it is you, give the order for me to come out to you on the water.”
    Jesus said, “Come on then.”
    So Peter jumped ship, and began walking on the raging water by himself. He managed a few steps, but faced with the violent wind and the angry waves, he lost his nerve. As he began to go under, he cried out, “Lord, save me!”
    Jesus immediately reached out his hand and grabbed hold of him, saying, “Your faith is gutless! Why did you get cold feet?!”
    As soon as they were all back in the same boat, the storm dropped. Those in the boat fell to their knees before Jesus, saying, “You are fair dinkum the Son of God.”

©2002 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net



Alternative Hebrew Bible Lections themed to the Gospel Lection


* 1 Kings 19: 9-18

    After walking forty days to reach Mount Sinai, Elijah spent the night in a cave. The next morning, the LORD spoke to him, saying, “Elijah, what are you doing here?”
    Elijah answered, “I’ve given my all for you, LORD God, ruler of everything. The people of Israel have turned their backs on their alliance with you. They have demolished the places of worship and massacred your prophets. I am the only one left and now they are hunting me down to kill me too.”
    The LORD said, “Go outside and stand to attention on the mountain, because I am about to pass in front of you.”
    As Elijah stood there, a cyclone hit the mountain, shattering the rocks and splintering the trees; but the LORD was not in the cyclone. After the cyclone, the mountain was shaken by an earthquake; but the LORD was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake, there was a raging bushfire; but the LORD was not in the bushfire. Then, after all that, there came a sound of sheer silence. When Elijah heard it, he pulled his coat over his face and stood stock still outside the entrance of the cave. Then, from the silence, came a voice, saying, “Elijah, what are you doing here?”
    Elijah answered, “I’ve given my all for you, LORD God, ruler of everything. The people of Israel have turned their backs on their alliance with you. They have demolished the places of worship and massacred your prophets. I am the only one left and now they are hunting me down to kill me too.”
    Then the LORD said to him, “Off you go. Head back down to the desert near Damascus. When you get there, you are to crown Hazael as the new king of Syria. Then you are to crown Jehu, the son of Nimshi, as the new king of Israel. Finally, you are to appoint Elisha, the son of Shaphat, to be your successor as my prophet. Hazael will begin wiping out all those who worship Baal. Any who escape him will fall to Jehu, and Elisha will finish off any who escape Jehu. But there are seven thousand people in Israel who have not bent their knees to Baal or kissed his statues, and they will survive the purge.”

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




* Psalm 85: 8-13

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