Daily Prayer At Saint Laika’s

FRIDAY THE FIFTH OF MAY, 2017

OPENING PRAYER

Nothing, O Lord, is more similar to your holy nature than the mind that is settled in quietness. You have called us into that quietness and peace of yours, from out of the turmoils of this world, as it were, from out of storms into a haven; which is such a peace as the world cannot give and which passes all capacity of man. Grant now, O most merciful Father, that, through your exceeding goodness, our minds may yield themselves obedient unto you without striving; and that they may quietly rise into that sovereign rest of yours above. Grant that nothing may disturb or disquiet them here beneath; but that all things may be quiet and calm through that peace of yours. Amen.

PSALM SEVENTY-EIGHT ( abridged )

O Lord, how glorious are your works.

Hear my teaching, O my people;
incline your ears to the words of my mouth.
I will open my mouth in a parable;
I will pour forth mysteries from of old,
such as we have heard and known,
which our forebears have told us.

We will not hide from their children,
but will recount to generations to come,
the praises of the Lord and his power
and the wonderful works he has done.

He laid a solemn charge on Jacob
and made it a law in Israel,
which he commanded them to teach their children,
that the generations to come might know,
and the children yet unborn,
that they in turn might tell it to their children,
so that they might put their trust in God
and not forget the deeds of God,
but keep his commandments,
and not be like their forebears,
a stubborn and rebellious generation,
a generation whose heart was not steadfast,
and whose spirit was not faithful to God.

The people of Ephraim, armed with the bow,
turned back in the day of battle;
they did not keep the covenant of God
and refused to walk in his law;
they forgot what he had done
and the wonders he had shown them.

For he did marvellous things
in the sight of their forebears,
in the land of Egypt, in the field of Zoan.
He divided the sea and let them pass through;
he made the waters stand still in a heap.
He led them with a cloud by day
and all the night through with a blaze of fire.
He split the hard rocks in the wilderness
and gave them drink as from the great deep.
He brought streams out of the rock
and made water gush out like rivers.

Yet for all this they sinned more against him
and defied the Most High in the wilderness.
Their heart was not steadfast towards him,
neither were they faithful to his covenant.

But he was so merciful that he forgave their misdeeds
and did not destroy them;
many a time he turned back his wrath
and did not suffer his whole displeasure to be roused.
For he remembered that they were but flesh,
a wind that passes by and does not return.

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.

O Lord, how glorious are your works.

God our deliverer,
as you led our ancestors through the wilderness,
so lead us through the wilderness of this world,
that we may be saved through Christ for ever. Amen.

MEDITATION by Tim Madsen

The Second Council of Constantinople begins 553

By the sixth century the unity of the Christian church had irretrievably shattered. The symptom of this shattered unity was an inability to agree on the exact relationship of the human and the divine in Christ. What lay beneath the symptom were a host of political and cultural issues that continued to roil across the centuries.

On the fifth of May, 553 AD the Second Council of Constantinople opened, It was convened by the renowned Roman emperor Justinian, and lasted into early June of the same year. It was led by the Patriarch of Constantinople and of the one hundred and fifty two bishops present only sixteen were from the western church. The Pope was not involved, even though he was in Constantinople at the time.

The three groupings that were emerging in the fifth and sixth centuries were the Miaphysites, the Dyphysites, and a centrist, mediating party.

The Miaphysites held that while Jesus was truly God and truly human, he had but a single divine nature.

The Dyphysites held that while Jesus was truly God and truly human he had two separate natures, human and divine, which were not to be mingled. They refused, for example, to call Mary the Mother of God.

The centrist party accepted what came to be called “the Chalcedonian Compromise,” named after the fifth century Council of Chalcedon. They believed that Jesus had both a human nature and a divine nature combined in a single person. Western Christians then and now, were regarded as Chalcedonian Christians. This was the position of the Emperor Justinian, and he used the Second Council of Constantinople to bash the Dyphysites and try to force into union the Miaphysites with the Chalcedonian Christians.

Justinian’s policy was a complete failure, pushing the Miaphysites and Dyphysites even farther from the middle of the road Chalcedonians but the policy of pestering everyone to be Chalcedonian continued.

Sadly, a century later, with Islam aggressively spreading, Muslim invaders were welcomed by Miaphysites and Dyphysites alike, who saw them as liberators from the hated Roman Empire. The Muslims treated them as “people of the Book” and allowed them to continue to practice their faith free from royal interference.

In our world, the Miaphysites are represented by the Coptic Orthodox, the Syrian Orthodox, and the Armenian Apostolic Church among others. The Dyphysites are represented by the Assyrian Church of the East. How differently might our world have looked then and now, if Christians had not driven each other apart.

Scripture. In the second chapter of "Colossians," at verses eight and nine we read:

"See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the universe, and not according to Christ. For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily."

INTERCESSIONS

We pray...

... for peace in the world.

... that we may discern what is really important in life and not fall out with each other over technicalities.

... for midwives. DETAILS

... for the people of the Netherlands who celebrate Liberation Day today.

... for those who are excluded from healthcare because of poverty or the refusal of insurance companies to cover them.

... for those who have died and for those who mourn their passing.

... for those who are unwell and for those caring for them.

... for those, both close to us and far off, who we hold in our personal prayers.

... for ourselves.

THE LORD'S PRAYER

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come;
thy will be done;
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation;
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
the power and the glory,
for ever and ever. Amen.

READING

From "The Epistle of Ignatius to the Ephesians":

The last times are come upon us. Let us therefore be of a reverent spirit, and fear the long-suffering of God, lest we despise the riches of his goodness and forbearance. For let us either fear the wrath to come, or let us love the present joy in the life that now is; and let our present and true joy be only this, to be found in Christ Jesus, that we may truly live. Do not at any time desire so much as even to breathe apart from him. For he is my hope; he is my boast; he is my never-failing riches, on whose account I bear about with me these bonds from Syria to Rome, these spiritual jewels, in which may I be perfected through your prayers, and become a partaker of the sufferings of Christ, and have fellowship with him in his death, his resurrection from the dead, and his everlasting life.

CLOSING PRAYER

God of our lives, by the power of your Spirit we have been drawn together by one baptism into one faith, serving one lord and saviour, Jesus Christ. Do not let us tear away from one another through division or hard argument. May your peace embrace our differences, preserving us in unity, as the body of Jesus Christ. Amen.

May the Lord bless us, protect us from all evil and bring us to everlasting life. Amen.

NOW LIGHT A CANDLE

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