December 23rd, 2018

Rorate coeli (Advent 4)


Explanation of the Week

The coming of God in all His unveiled power at Mt. Sinai was terrifying to the people of Israel. The thundering voice of the Lord puts sinners in fear of death (Deut 18:15-19). God, therefore, raised up a prophet like Moses, the Messiah, the Christ. God came to His people veiled in human flesh. The skies poured down the Righteous One from heaven; the earth opened her womb and brought forth Salvation (Introit) through the blessed Virgin Mary, the mother of the Lord (Lk 1:39-56). The fruit of her womb is the very Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world, the One whose sandal strap John was not worthy to loose (Jn 1:19-28). In Jesus we are delivered from fear and anxiety. In Him alone we have the peace of God which surpasses all understanding (Phil 4:4-7).

Introit

Antiphon:
Rain down, you heavens, | from above,*
     and let the skies pour down the | Righteous One;
Let the earth o- | pen her womb,*
     and bring forth Sal- | vation. (Isaiah 45:8)

Psalm:
The heavens declare the glo- | ry of God;*
     and the firmament shows His | handiwork.
Their voice is gone out into | all the earth,*
     and their words to the end | of the world.
In the heavens He has set a tabernacle | for the sun,*
     which is like a Bridegroom coming out of His | chamber.
His going forth is from the end of the | heaven,*
     and his circuit unto the | end of it. (Psalm 19:1, 4-6)

Collect (LSB)

Stir up Your power, O Lord, and come and help us by Your might, that the sins which weigh us down may be quickly lifted by Your grace and mercy; for You live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

Collect (TLH)

Stir up, O Lord, we beseech Thee, Thy power, and come and help us with Thy great might, that by Thy grace whatsoever is hindered by our sins may be speedily accomplished through Thy mercy and satisfaction; who livest and reignest with Thee and the Holy Ghoest, ever one God world without end. Amen.

Collecta Latina

Excita quaesumus Domine potentiam tuam et veni, et magna nobis virtute succurre, ut per auxilium gratiae tuae quod nostra peccata praepediunt, indulgentia tuae propitiationis acceleret. Qui cum Patre et Spiritu sancto vivis et regnas DEUS, per omnia secula seculorum, Amen.

Old Testament (LSB): Deut. 18:15-19


 15The LORD thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken;

 16According to all that thou desiredst of the LORD thy God in Horeb in the day of the assembly, saying, Let me not hear again the voice of the LORD my God, neither let me see this great fire any more, that I die not.

 17And the LORD said unto me, They have well spoken that which they have spoken.

 18I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him.

 19And it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him.



Old Testament: Isaiah 40:1-8


 1Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God.

 2Speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem, and cry unto her, that her warfare is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned: for she hath received of the LORD's hand double for all her sins.

 3The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God.

 4Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain:

 5And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.

 6The voice said, Cry. And he said, What shall I cry? All flesh is grass, and all the goodliness thereof is as the flower of the field:

 7The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: because the spirit of the LORD bloweth upon it: surely the people is grass.

 8The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever.



Gradual

The LORD is near to all who call up- | on Him,*
     to all who call upon | Him in truth.
My mouth shall speak the praise | of the LORD,*
     and all flesh shall bless His | holy name. (Psalm 145:18, 21)

Epistle: Phil. 4:4-7


 4Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice.

 5Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand.

 6Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

 7And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.



Verse

Alle- | luia.*
     Alle- | luia.
You are my help and my de- | liverer;*
     do not delay, O my God. Alle- | luia. (Ps.40:17)

Gospel: John 1:19-28


 19And this is the record of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, Who art thou?

 20And he confessed, and denied not; but confessed, I am not the Christ.

 21And they asked him, What then? Art thou Elias? And he saith, I am not. Art thou that prophet? And he answered, No.

 22Then said they unto him, Who art thou? that we may give an answer to them that sent us. What sayest thou of thyself?

 23He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias.

 24And they which were sent were of the Pharisees.

 25And they asked him, and said unto him, Why baptizest thou then, if thou be not that Christ, nor Elias, neither that prophet?

 26John answered them, saying, I baptize with water: but there standeth one among you, whom ye know not;

 27He it is, who coming after me is preferred before me, whose shoe's latchet I am not worthy to unloose.

 28These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where John was baptizing.



Offertory

Hail Mary, full of grace: the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. (Luke 1)

Matins Psalm(s): Ps. 5


 1Give ear to my words, O LORD, consider my meditation.

 2Hearken unto the voice of my cry, my King, and my God: for unto thee will I pray.

 3My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O LORD; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up.

 4For thou art not a God that hath pleasure in wickedness: neither shall evil dwell with thee.

 5The foolish shall not stand in thy sight: thou hatest all workers of iniquity.

 6Thou shalt destroy them that speak leasing: the LORD will abhor the bloody and deceitful man.

 7But as for me, I will come into thy house in the multitude of thy mercy: and in thy fear will I worship toward thy holy temple.

 8Lead me, O LORD, in thy righteousness because of mine enemies; make thy way straight before my face.

 9For there is no faithfulness in their mouth; their inward part is very wickedness; their throat is an open sepulchre; they flatter with their tongue.

 10Destroy thou them, O God; let them fall by their own counsels; cast them out in the multitude of their transgressions; for they have rebelled against thee.

 11But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them: let them also that love thy name be joyful in thee.

 12For thou, LORD, wilt bless the righteous; with favour wilt thou compass him as with a shield.



First Reading: Is. 43:25-44:20


 25I, even I, am he that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins.

 26Put me in remembrance: let us plead together: declare thou, that thou mayest be justified.

 27Thy first father hath sinned, and thy teachers have transgressed against me.

 28Therefore I have profaned the princes of the sanctuary, and have given Jacob to the curse, and Israel to reproaches.

 1Yet now hear, O Jacob my servant; and Israel, whom I have chosen:

 2Thus saith the LORD that made thee, and formed thee from the womb, which will help thee; Fear not, O Jacob, my servant; and thou, Jesurun, whom I have chosen.

 3For I will pour water upon him that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground: I will pour my spirit upon thy seed, and my blessing upon thine offspring:

 4And they shall spring up as among the grass, as willows by the water courses.

 5One shall say, I am the LORD's; and another shall call himself by the name of Jacob; and another shall subscribe with his hand unto the LORD, and surname himself by the name of Israel.

 6Thus saith the LORD the King of Israel, and his redeemer the LORD of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God.

 7And who, as I, shall call, and shall declare it, and set it in order for me, since I appointed the ancient people? and the things that are coming, and shall come, let them shew unto them.

 8Fear ye not, neither be afraid: have not I told thee from that time, and have declared it? ye are even my witnesses. Is there a God beside me? yea, there is no God; I know not any.

 9They that make a graven image are all of them vanity; and their delectable things shall not profit; and they are their own witnesses; they see not, nor know; that they may be ashamed.

 10Who hath formed a god, or molten a graven image that is profitable for nothing?

 11Behold, all his fellows shall be ashamed: and the workmen, they are of men: let them all be gathered together, let them stand up; yet they shall fear, and they shall be ashamed together.

 12The smith with the tongs both worketh in the coals, and fashioneth it with hammers, and worketh it with the strength of his arms: yea, he is hungry, and his strength faileth: he drinketh no water, and is faint.

 13The carpenter stretcheth out his rule; he marketh it out with a line; he fitteth it with planes, and he marketh it out with the compass, and maketh it after the figure of a man, according to the beauty of a man; that it may remain in the house.

 14He heweth him down cedars, and taketh the cypress and the oak, which he strengtheneth for himself among the trees of the forest: he planteth an ash, and the rain doth nourish it.

 15Then shall it be for a man to burn: for he will take thereof, and warm himself; yea, he kindleth it, and baketh bread; yea, he maketh a god, and worshippeth it; he maketh it a graven image, and falleth down thereto.

 16He burneth part thereof in the fire; with part thereof he eateth flesh; he roasteth roast, and is satisfied: yea, he warmeth himself, and saith, Aha, I am warm, I have seen the fire:

 17And the residue thereof he maketh a god, even his graven image: he falleth down unto it, and worshippeth it, and prayeth unto it, and saith, Deliver me; for thou art my god.

 18They have not known nor understood: for he hath shut their eyes, that they cannot see; and their hearts, that they cannot understand.

 19And none considereth in his heart, neither is there knowledge nor understanding to say, I have burned part of it in the fire; yea, also I have baked bread upon the coals thereof; I have roasted flesh, and eaten it: and shall I make the residue thereof an abomination? shall I fall down to the stock of a tree?

 20He feedeth on ashes: a deceived heart hath turned him aside, that he cannot deliver his soul, nor say, Is there not a lie in my right hand?



Vespers Psalm(s): Ps. 145


 1I will extol thee, my God, O king; and I will bless thy name for ever and ever.

 2Every day will I bless thee; and I will praise thy name for ever and ever.

 3Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised; and his greatness is unsearchable.

 4One generation shall praise thy works to another, and shall declare thy mighty acts.

 5I will speak of the glorious honour of thy majesty, and of thy wondrous works.

 6And men shall speak of the might of thy terrible acts: and I will declare thy greatness.

 7They shall abundantly utter the memory of thy great goodness, and shall sing of thy righteousness.

 8The LORD is gracious, and full of compassion; slow to anger, and of great mercy.

 9The LORD is good to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works.

 10All thy works shall praise thee, O LORD; and thy saints shall bless thee.

 11They shall speak of the glory of thy kingdom, and talk of thy power;

 12To make known to the sons of men his mighty acts, and the glorious majesty of his kingdom.

 13Thy kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and thy dominion endureth throughout all generations.

 14The LORD upholdeth all that fall, and raiseth up all those that be bowed down.

 15The eyes of all wait upon thee; and thou givest them their meat in due season.

 16Thou openest thine hand, and satisfiest the desire of every living thing.

 17The LORD is righteous in all his ways, and holy in all his works.

 18The LORD is nigh unto all them that call upon him, to all that call upon him in truth.

 19He will fulfil the desire of them that fear him: he also will hear their cry, and will save them.

 20The LORD preserveth all them that love him: but all the wicked will he destroy.

 21My mouth shall speak the praise of the LORD: and let all flesh bless his holy name for ever and ever.



Second Reading: Rev. 11:1-19


 1And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein.

 2But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months.

 3And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth.

 4These are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth.

 5And if any man will hurt them, fire proceedeth out of their mouth, and devoureth their enemies: and if any man will hurt them, he must in this manner be killed.

 6These have power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy: and have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to smite the earth with all plagues, as often as they will.

 7And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them.

 8And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.

 9And they of the people and kindreds and tongues and nations shall see their dead bodies three days and an half, and shall not suffer their dead bodies to be put in graves.

 10And they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, and make merry, and shall send gifts one to another; because these two prophets tormented them that dwelt on the earth.

 11And after three days and an half the spirit of life from God entered into them, and they stood upon their feet; and great fear fell upon them which saw them.

 12And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up hither. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and their enemies beheld them.

 13And the same hour was there a great earthquake, and the tenth part of the city fell, and in the earthquake were slain of men seven thousand: and the remnant were affrighted, and gave glory to the God of heaven.

 14The second woe is past; and, behold, the third woe cometh quickly.

 15And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.

 16And the four and twenty elders, which sat before God on their seats, fell upon their faces, and worshipped God,

 17Saying, We give thee thanks, O LORD God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and hast reigned.

 18And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth.

 19And the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen in his temple the ark of his testament: and there were lightnings, and voices, and thunderings, and an earthquake, and great hail.



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