Abundance of grace…

For if by the one man’s offense death reigned through the one, much more those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.)” (Romans 5:17, NKJV)

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We…rejoice in hope…

Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.” (Romans 5:1–2, NKJV)

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He did not waver…

He did not waver at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strengthened in faith, giving glory to God, and being fully convinced that what He had promised He was also able to perform. And therefore “it was accounted to him for righteousness.”” (Romans 4:20–22, NKJV)

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Collect: Sixth Sunday after Trinity…

O GOD, who hast prepared for them that love thee such good things as pass man’s understanding; Pour into our hearts such love toward thee, that we, loving thee above all things, may obtain thy promises, which exceed all that we can desire; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

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Prayer for illumination: July 20, 2014…

Blessed are the undefiled in the way, Who walk in the law of the LORD!
Blessed are those who keep His testimonies,
Who seek Him with the whole heart!
They also do no iniquity;
They walk in His ways.
You have commanded us
To keep Your precepts diligently.
Oh, that our ways were directed
To keep Your statutes!
Then we would not be ashamed,
When we look into all Your commandments.
We will praise You with uprightness of heart,
When we learn Your righteous judgments.
we will keep Your statutes;
Oh, do not forsake us utterly!

O God, indeed, You have not forsaken us. We know, O God, that You set Your love upon us from before there was time, from before there was eternity. That Your Son has been the Lamb slain forever and ever. Given for us, O God, that we might die unto sin and live unto You.

We pray this day O God, by Your word bring that closer to us. Shape us more in his image. In new heart, O God, do that great work that Your Apostle tells us he is confident of…that work begun will be completed until the day of Jesus Christ.

And Father, we pray, may the words of my mouth, and the meditation of all our hearts be in all ways acceptable in your sight, O God, our Fortress, our Strength, our Rock and our Redeemer.

Amen

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Prayer after sermon: July 20, 2014…

Search me, O God, and know my heart;
Try me, and know my anxieties;
And see if there is any wicked way in me,
And lead me in the way everlasting. Psalm 139:23-24

O our Holy Father and our God, we know deep in our hearts, O God, that we are not yet like Your Son. We know, each of us, that there is a seemingly infinite way to go. Yet we trust You, O God, because You have told us through Your apostle and through Your Scriptures that You are faithful to do it.

We pray, O God, search our hearts as only You can. Search our hearts as only You know. And, indeed, O God, shape us, write Your law on our hearts, that we might love You, that we might love the neighbor…and that those things, written on our hearts, would indeed keep our feet forever on Your pathways everlasting.

Lord we pray this because we know that You are powerful to do it. We pray this because we know that You have given us Your Son, Jesus Christ, and if You would not withhold Him from us, You would not withhold from us any good thing. And Your word tells us that this is a good thing, O God.

So Father, we pray, be about the business of our hearts…and make us like Your Son.

Father, all these things in Christ’s holy name we pray.

Amen

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Relevance…

…if Scripture is not inherently relevant, you cannot make it so.

H. B. Charles, Jr, On Preaching, p. 60

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