Sunday 4 November, 2018

31st 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

Ruth 1: 1-18

Christ, from whom all blessings flow (StF 676)
Jesu, Jesu, fill us with your love (StF 249)
O God of Bethel, by whose hand (StF 475)
Thou God of truth and love  (StF 620)
When we are living, we are in the Lord  (StF 485)

Psalm 146

Hymns echoing the psalmist’s theme

I'll praise my make while I've breath (StF 79)
* I will speak out for those who have no voices (StF 702)
Sing praise to God who reigns above (StF 117)
* There's a wideness in God's mercy (StF 416)

Hebrews 9: 11-14

Christ is the world's light  (StF 346)
Lord Jesus Christ, you have come to us (StF 594)
* There's a wideness in God's mercy (StF 416)
Victim divine, thy grace we claim (StF 600)
What shall I do my God to love, my Saviour (StF 516)

Mark 12: 28-34

A new commandment I give unto you (StF 242)
Community of Christ (StF 681)
Fill thou my life, O Lord my God (StF 73)
* I will speak out for those who have no voices (StF 702)

Alternative related readings

Deuteronomy 6: 1-9

A charge to keep I have (StF 658)
I will worship (StF 54)

Psalm 119: 1-8

Hymns echoing the psalmist’s theme

Help us, O Lord to learn (StF 501)
My eyes be open to your presence (StF 560)

The Revd Phillip Poyner writes:

The Romans passage speaks of the power of Christ’s blood to purify our conscience. Our conscience prompts us to action but in Deuteronomy we also see the necessity for deliberate intention to honour God, bringing blessing, a theme amplified in Psalm 119 .

The Book of Ruth appears in the three-year lectionary only twice, today and next Sunday - when often the Remembrance Sunday readings will be used. Ruth’s commitment to Naomi and to Naomi’s God provides an illustration of deliberate intention towards God and her neighbour (albeit her mother-in-law), and the linked Psalm 146 proclaims the needy are on God’s heart and should be on ours. The continuous readings fit well with the gospel this week.
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