Sunday 25 July, 2021


17th Sunday in Ordinary Time                                

Readings are laid out as for the continuous form of the lectionary. Alternative related readings (OT and psalm only) are below. Hymns marked with an asterisk (*) are suggested for more than one reading 


Come down, O Love divine (StF 372)
*God is love: let heaven adore him (StF 103)
*Love divine, all loves excelling (StF 503)
We lay our broken world (StF 718) 

2 Samuel 11: 1-15 

God, how can we forgive when bonds of love are torn? (StF 613)
Holy breath of God (StF 380) esp. v3
*Let love be real, in giving and receiving (StF 615)
Listening God, you hear us when we cannot speak (StF 524)
Purify my heart (StF 508)
Sacred the body God has created (StF 618)
When we are tested and wrestle alone (StF 240) 

Psalm 14 

Hymns echoing the psalmists theme 

Father, we have sinned in word, and deed (StF 422)
God of forgiveness, your people you freed (StF 425)
We turn to you, O God of every nation (StF 720) (possible hymn of confession)

Ephesians 3: 14-21

 Baptise us with your Spirit (StF 369)
*God is love: let heaven adore him (StF 103)
I know that my redeemer lives, and ever prays for me (StF 502)
Lord, I come to you (StF 471)
*Love divine, all loves excelling (StF 503)
Not far beyond the sea nor high above the heavens, but very nigh (StF 159)
Our God is a great big God (StF 61) 

John 6: 1-21

A rich young man came seeking (StF 243) esp. v.3
Be known to us in breaking bread (StF 573) communion hymn
Bread is blessed and broken (StF 576) communion hymn
Eternal Father, strong to save (StF 517)
Lead us, heavenly Father, lead us (StF 238)
*Let love be real, in giving and receiving (StF 615)
When we were in the darkest night (StF 241) 

Alternative related readings 

2 Kings 4: 42-44 

Break thou the bread of life, O Lord, to me (StF 153)
Deep in the shadows of the past (StF 463)
God moves in a mysterious way (StF 104) 

Psalm 145: 10-18 

Hymns echoing the psalmists theme 

Come, let us praise the Lord (StF 43)
Great is thy faithfulness, O God my Father (StF 51)
Let all the world in every corner sing (StF 57)
Sing praise to God who reigns above (StF 117) 

The Revd Phillip Poyner has edited this week's hymn suggestions. He writes:

As the feeding of the five thousand is recorded in each of the gospels, it occurs more than once in our three-year cycle of readings. Preachers may want to tackle the 2 Samuel reading today. 

Joyce Baldwin (IVP Tyndale Commentary) provides a useful analysis of the behaviour of David and Uriah. In summary, she writes: i) David remained in Jerusalem, “killing time”  while others risked their lives in battle; ii) David’s desire overrides Bathsheba’s feelings, and that she is married to one of his serving troops; iii) To David she is merely the woman (v5); iv) David asks Uriah about how the people fared and how the war was going but his reply is not recorded, perhaps signifying David was not interested in Uriah’s account (v7); v) Three times the point is made that Uriah did not go home. He knew his duty, he was not on leave, at liberty to exercise his pleasure like David. vi) David, to cover his immorality, seeks to get Uriah drunk and then effectively orders the murder of an innocent man. 

Psalm 14 reminds us that even the best people like David are susceptible to behaviour like his, but in Ephesians 3:16 Paul prays that “you may be strengthened in your inner being with power through his Spirit”.       

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