Recorded at St. Andrew’s, Banwell at 10.30am on Sunday 13th September.
Apologies for the abrupt cutoff after communion – unfortunately the computer froze and we were no longer able to stream video. All that is missing is the notices and blessing. All notices can be found in this week’s New Creation Pew News.
Hymns, Songs, Readings and other links for 14th Sunday of Trinity –
10th Sunday of Re-opening – A New Church for a New Society:
“Themes in John’s Gospel.”
Justice – Part A (John 12:20-33)
Sunday 13th Sept 2020
Key Bible Readings:
John 12:20-33 – “Very truly I tell you, unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds.” (John12:24) The great paradox of the ‘God story.’
Genesis 50:15-21 – Realizing that Jacob had died, Joseph’s brothers feared that Joseph might take revenge for their actions of seeking him harm. They plead for forgiveness and to their amazement they discover Joseph shows them only kindness. They are indebted to him, and therefore the prophecy that he, Joseph would one day be their shining star is strangely fulfilled.
Romans 14:1-12 – Paul is trying to sort out what can seem almost a very modern problem. Some people want it this way, and some that. Each can seek to judge and blame the other and then place Paul in the impossible position of ‘playing Solomon’ – in other words having to choose between the two. Paul rephrases the whole situation – its not whether you eat meat or not that is important, it’s who you eat it, or refrain from eating it, for? Is it self, and self-importance, or puritanical status, or is it as an act of loving devotion to God? Unless it’s the latter, whether you eat meat or refrain from eating, it has no merit.
Matthew 18:21-35 – Here is Jesus as a storyteller at His best. In an age which increasingly “does not do God” the great danger is that we will forget that we too are in need, and have indeed been, forgiven. Without that knowledge we will continue to demand our rights, we will continue to demand ‘justice,’ sadly sometimes as a mask for retribution, but we will find it increasingly hard to go beyond judgement and justice, and to reach out for mercy, for forgiveness and for grace. And so, the great danger is the world will be hot on ‘right’s language and on ‘demands for justice,’ but cold on compassion and love.
We have been told by Facebook that unfortunately we are not able to play recorded artists during the actual “Livestream” itself at present, so we are playing certain videos either Before or After as a physical Church. So that everyone can share in a full experience of the breadth of the worship life of the Church details of this music is given here:
The person who sent this in said, “I love the lyrics in this song, “my hope is built on nothing less than Jesus blood and righteousness” and later “weak made strong in the saviour’s love”. I’m reminded the world is fallen and full of injustice, but in Jesus we no longer put our faith in the transient things of this world, we have it all already in Jesus.”
Toots was himself wrongly put in Prison (54-46 was his number) and the song is a protest about injustice. Toots is regarded as the founder of Reggae (a distinctive worldwide phenomenon) and he passed away this week.
In celebration of the fusion between faith and Reggae music
“From Menace to Miracle” by Larry Harvey (Chaplain of Horfield Prison) available from Eden and Amazon, and also as an ebook from Amazon Kindle. A remarkable story. All proceeds to Southmead Hospital Neurological Dept.
The Worship and Music Group took the line from Jesus’ lips, “the time is coming, and has now come, when you will worship in Spirit and in truth” (verse 23) as the inspiration for how we approached choosing our worship today.
Set Readings for today:
Jeremiah 15:15-21 – Jeremiah is sometimes regarded as “the miserable prophet,” and not without cause. But his was painful vocation, to stand alone and for God when it would have been so much easier to give in.
Romans 12:9-end – Gosh, it’s as if Paul wrote these words fresh for these times that we are going through. Such is Paul’s timeless call to a high standard of Christian love and vocation. And it is when the Church has sought to live out this vocation that it has stood out throughout history as the ambassador of the King. As Francis of Assisi used to say, “Go out and share the message of the Gospel to the four corners of the world, and if you have to, use words.”
Matthew 16:21:end – By powerful contrast, Jesus reminds us that even His best friend, Peter will fail all too easily in his task of following. And, so will we. That is why we have the Cross. But better to try and fall short, than not to try at all. Then in this way, our many little failures, our many little ‘deaths’ to self and to ego, will strangely not only make sense, but indeed become the path to understanding the Way of Love and the Way of the Cross.
Hymns and Songs for 12th Sunday after Trinity:
This week, in light of our Bible Reading, we chose to approach how we chose hymns and songs differently. Inspired by the verse “the time is coming, and has now come, when you will worship in Spirit and truth,” (John 4:23) we have sought to share with one another and with everyone else below, key hymns, songs and pieces of music that have truly spoken to us or inspired us in our own lives in the belief that here, by worshipping in Spirit and in truth, we meet with God Himself.
There is a lot of material here, and many stories, each worth exploring, each like a precious offering. Please enjoy and receive what is offered in the same Spirit in which it is shared.
“Dear Lord and Father of mankind” with Lyrics:
Ruth Wratten writes, “Dear Lord and Father of Mankind” – Such meaningful words. “Drop Thy still dews of quietness till all our strivings cease.”
Ruth writes, “My song is Love unknown” – same reason. Powerful words.
“The Power of the Cross” by Stuart Townend with Lyrics:
Liz Chappell writes, “It’s an amazingly moving hymn, taking us movingly through the Passion story. Verses 4 and the Final chorus bring us directly into the magnificent drama
Oh to see MY name written in the wounds….. Death is crushed to death…. We stand forgiven at the Cross.
This always moves me to tears.”
Rosemary Bailey writes, “I sang this (O to see the dawn- the power of the cross) at a Stuart Townsend concert that Jan Martin invited me to. It was a pivotal moment as it brought home that this was truly “about me”
Singing “Oh, to see my name written on the cross” and “through Your suffering I am free” made me realise that I was included in this Grace & it set me on a different path of “being a Christian.”
(Around that time was also a very powerful sermon from Kay that affected me in a similar way)
“There is a hope that burns within my heart” with Lyrics:
Liz writes, “Hugh would like to nominate ‘There is a hope that burns within my heart. He says that he gets very excited about his faith when he hears it played on the Piano.”
Baz Nottage writes, “This version was sung by the college choir at the valedictory when I completed my theology course. I love the hope it brings, it reminds me that peace is found in still waters, a place Jesus leads me to. A place where he takes care of my needs, the struggle of this world being insignificant. In the tough points in my life I play this and I’m reminded that he is with me and this brings comfort. Then the best bit of all, knowing that I will dwell in the house of the Lord all my days. For myself, psalm 23 and this version is all about life and the friend we have in Jesus.
Kirsty writes, “This was always my favourite hymn at school and the hymn I sang solo for my audition to join the choir. It reminds us that God is everywhere-wherever we are, He is with us and we can find time to be still in His presence at any moment.”
Caz writes, “This one is from me this time. It is one that I used to love when I was much younger and the words always spoke to me about being one with each other and with Jesus. How through his healing hands we could all live together in his love.”
Kirsty writes, “Rapunzel sings of how she had never truly seen the world before leaving her tower, or finding love. I quoted this song in my application to Pioneer Ministry, ‘At last I see the light and it’s like the fog has lifted…All at once, everything is different, now that I see You.’ I used this to demonstrate how God fills one’s life with the purpose that He has for each of us and until we see that purpose, we can feel as if we’re stumbling in the dark. I also sang this as part of the first talk I gave at a Communion service, so I find it very poignant.”
Matt writes, “I still remember when I first saw this film it spoke so powerfully of the struggle ordinary men and women face and who are so easily forgotten. Pete Potherswaite for me was, and is epic – the dignity, the passion and the fragility. Very powerful. The film is brilliant and is still available on DVD from Amazon or on Amazon Prime.
And here a more traditional version by the Spanish guitarist and singer Jose Feliciano who is just incredible and plays purely by ear as he was blind since birth. My wife Jan particularly loves this version. Such a talented outpouring of pure artistry and spirit. His flamenco guitar playing at the end is well, breathtaking: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EZyPVzN4oyY
“Boldly I approach” a powerful reflective song from Rend Collective – speaking out the message of the Samaritan woman after meeting Jesus her Messiah, and ours. Lyrics version thanks to Rend Collective – one of the few bands to allow Churches to use their music as part of Livestream services): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xx94Fg4qZr8
Lord’s Prayer in Aramaic:
The epic version sung in Jesus’ own language Aramaic, sung here before Pope Francis by the Cathedral in Georgia. Apparently, the strength of the male voice reminded him of the human spirit in prayer, while the clarity of the young girl’s voice which begins and ends the song reminded him of the voice of the Spirit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=locW-9S00VU
Matt writes, “all I know is pretty much every time I watch and listen to this video it makes the hairs on the back of my neck tingle. Although it is so different to so much else I listen to, there is something about it which speaks almost from another place.”
Jen Nottage writes, “Charlotte and Hayley’s worship song is” Trust in you” by Lauren Daigle. They have chosen this song because “when God doesn’t answer prayers the way you want Him to, we have to trust that there is a bigger picture. This helps us through life in general.”
Gemma Stocker writes, “This song has such a Beautiful message that the we are all children of God and how God is with us on our journey of life and when we feel pain we don’t have to fear as God has given us this perfect love. The tune is rocky and I think is such a modern Christian song that would appeal to young Christians. I was introduced to this song while working on a Salvation Army Christian camp last summer in America and whenever I hear it, it reminds me of my time and also the children I looked after.”
Matt writes, “I still remember when I first heard and saw Stormzy’s video of his original live recording. It was so moving, we played it at the Congresbury Carol Service that year and I remember people came up to me afterwards in tears – the truth of Christmas makes the story and hope of this wonderful song real.
And, of course, “Amazing Grace” the original hymn from which so many versions have been recorded, and is still the most requested and popular hymn, ever. Here again the much appreciated version of 50 countries during this time of Lockdown: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BA7pdABvpnc
From the BBC iPlayer – “The Gospel according to Mica: the story of Gospel Music in six songs” – with Mica Paris – excellent insight into the soul of Gospel Music and into the importance of Hope against the backdrop of injustice and the discrimination of racism. But even more than that, the story of hope and healing over pain, suffering and injustice. I watched it again on Friday evening and it is truly inspirational. (Only available till Tuesday 1st Sept)
“Shechem: a visit to the place of Jacob’s well and where the woman at the well story took place” – this video by an Australian pastor for a Mexican Mission helps to show many of the sites of this difficult to access place, which today is called Nablus, and is deep in the West Bank. Next time though, when we go to Israel? Enjoy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v81pj8__ZqA&feature=youtu.be
Set Readings for today: Isaiah 56:1, 6-8 – God’s great desire, “to build a House of Prayer for all peoples and nations.”
Romans 11:1-2a, 29-32 – A great leveller and also an encouragement to his Jewish compatriots. Paul is setting himself up for one of his great phrases, “By grace alone. And by faith alone.” Vintage speech – St Paul.
Matthew 15:[10-20] and 21-28: – This included much of the same material we are going to look at today but it shows how it is linked to Prayer when Jesus says, in verses 10-20, that it is what comes out of a person that is the most important thing with regard to God, not simply observing carefully what goes in to a person, which was what the Pharisees focused on. The reason is that, although the two are linked, what comes out of a person also reveals the will and purposes of the heart ie. what is good and wholesome and lifegiving, not just the avoidance of what is not so.
Hymns and Songs for 8th Sunday after Trinity: Traditional:
Modern: We have been told by Facebook that unfortunately we are not able to play recorded artists during the actual “Livestream” itself at present, so we are playing certain videos either Before or After as a physical Church. So that everyone can share in a full experience of the breadth of the worship life of the Church details of this music is given here: Played before the Livestream:
7. “Real Love” by The Kingdom Choir – released only a month ago. Played on Friday night on Radio 2 as I was travelling home – In Aid of Refuge Charity: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3joaEgzmetU Played after the Livestream:
Further Videos 11. Looking further into Contemplative Prayer “The Prayer of the Heart: ”A short practical guide by Lawrence Freeman from the World Community of Christian Meditation (WCCM) (13mins) Very good: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kaVMTJXoCS0 – also quite a few other talks by Lawrence Freeman in the same vein. Simply search for “Lawrence Freeman,” “WCCM,” or “The Prayer of the Heart.”
12. See also – See also the talk we mentioned a few weeks ago, given by Richard Rohr in Norwich Cathedral in 2015, “Becoming Stillness.” Although an hour long, it is one of the best talks to help us understand why Prayer is both so valuable and so important: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9TGS-JD80nE
Books: “The Flame of Sacred Love” by Brother Ramon SSF – great exploration of the Hymn by Charles Wesley that we looked at today. Much more in depth and much better written. A BARGAIN at £2 from Amazon.
TV and Films: “The Railway Man” – not so much to do with our theme today, but as a way of remembering all that so many went through in the Far East during the Second World War (VJ Day). A great testimony to the power of the human spirit to forgive and to look to live in the light of reconciliation. A true story. Well worth a watch. Was shown Friday night (14th Aug) on BBC 1, and so should be available on iPlayer. Alternatively, available on DVD from Amazon, or Amazon Prime.
Recorded live at 10.30am Sunday 2nd Auguat from St. Andrew’s, Banwell.
Hymns, Songs, Readings and other links for 8th Sunday of Trinity – 4th Sunday of Re-opening – A New Church for a New Society: “Celebration of the Feast of the Transfiguration” (6th Aug) Sunday 2nd August 2020 Bible Readings: Key Bible Readings: Matthew 17:1-13 read by Sarah Sims 1 Corinthians 13: Paul’s great message of Love
Set Readings for today: Isaiah 55:1-5 – This most wonderful passage which talks about the Lord, Yeshua (Jesus) wine, milk, rich food and water without cost and of renewing the great Covenant with Israel and with all people.
Romans 9:1-5 – Paul begins a famous speech where he laments for his fellow Israelites who have received so much at the hands of God and yet who do not recognise the Mashiach – the Jewish name for the Messiah who Paul has come to see is none other than Yeshua (Jesus). There is much hope however in modern times with the outreach work of “One for Israel,” a Jewish Christian group based in Israel and throughout the world – Jewish people speaking to their own brothers and sisters about their discovery of Jesus.
See https://www.oneforisrael.org/ where they have some amazing testimonies from fellow believers. Very inspirational especially around Isaiah 53, but also insightful into the cultural barriers for a Jewish person to become a Christian.
Matthew 14:13-21 – the great story of the Feeding of the Five Thousand – Jesus’ re-enactment Moses and the Exodus with the Manna from heaven and the Quail. Jesus is showing not just compassion for the people, important though that is, but also calling them into becoming a renewed people – people who would be ‘Israel’ to Israel and the world again, a people fit to proclaim and inhabit the Kingdom of God.
4. “Be still for the presence of the Lord” – Aled Jones singing solo – captures very much the moment of the Transfiguration as if these were the words of Peter, James or John: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZJMaOxdu6B4
Reflection on the contribution of Gospel and Soul Music: Ties in with reference to “The Gospel according to Mica: the story of Gospel music through six songs” (BBC 4) – a must see. Songs include: – Amazing Grace – Go down Moses – Precious Lord, take my hand – Touch the hem of His garment – O Happy Day – Blinded by your Grace – Part 2
15. “Precious Lord, take my hand” – Thomas Dorsey – true vintage Gospel – written within hours of learning both his wife and his baby child had passed away. Became a firm favourite of Dr Martin Luther King Jr – in fact requested by him on the morning the day that he was later assassinated: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6oVcgrbeByo
18. “Most recent research on the Turin Shroud” – shows how the Resurrection was an enormous explosion of UV light, not unlike a second “Big Bang” but this time in and through the Body of Jesus. May not be “proof” but very interesting not least because it shows how Science and Faith may indeed inform each other: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_9lMQlI32wE&t=37s
TV and Films: BBC iPlayer – “The Gospel according to Mica: the story of Gospel Music in six songs” – with Mica Paris – excellent insight into the soul of Gospel Music and into the importance of Hope against the backdrop of injustice and the discrimination of racism. “The Mission” (1986) – the story of the Gospel and the native American Indians of South America. Incredibly moving at many levels – based on a true story. Stars a young Jeremy Irons, Robert De Niro and Liam Nielsen. Available on DVD, Netflix and Amazon Prime.
And from last week: For those who might be interested in learning more about the “Interior Life” – see talk given by Richard Rohr in Norwich Cathedral in 2015, “Becoming Stillness” – although an hour long, it is one of the best talks to help us understand why Prayer is both so valuable and so important: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9TGS-JD80nE