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Rorate coeli (Advent 4)

December 22nd, 2019

  1. Explanation of the Week
  2. Introit
  3. Collect
  4. Old Testament  · Deut. 18:15-19
  5. Gradual
  6. Epistle  · Phil. 4:4-7
  7. Verse
  8. Gospel  · John 1:19-28
  9. Morning Psalm  · Ps. 5
  10. First Reading  · Is. 43:1-24
  11. Evening Psalm  · Ps. 145
  12. Second Reading  · Rev. 9:13-10:11

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).
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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)
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Collect

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.
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Old Testament · Deut. 18:15-19

A New Prophet Like Moses

15 “The Lord your God will raise up for you a Prophet like me from your midst, from your brethren. Him you shall hear, 16 according to all you desired of the Lord your God in Horeb in the day of the assembly, saying, ‘Let me not hear again the voice of the Lord my God, nor let me see this great fire anymore, lest I die.’

17 “And the Lord said to me: ‘What they have spoken is good. 18 I will raise up for them a Prophet like you from among their brethren, and will put My words in His mouth, and He shall speak to them all that I command Him. 19 And it shall be that whoever will not hear My words, which He speaks in My name, I will require it of him.


New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

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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)
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Epistle · Phil. 4:4-7

Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!

Let your [a]gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

Footnotes:

  1. Philippians 4:5 graciousness or forbearance

New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

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Verse

Alle- | luia.*
     Alle- | luia.
You are my help and my de- | liverer;*
     do not delay, O my God. Alle- | luia. (Ps.40:17)
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Gospel · John 1:19-28

A Voice in the Wilderness

19 Now this is the testimony of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, “Who are you?”

20 He confessed, and did not deny, but confessed, “I am not the Christ.”

21 And they asked him, “What then? Are you Elijah?”

He said, “I am not.”

“Are you the Prophet?”

And he answered, “No.”

22 Then they said to him, “Who are you, that we may give an answer to those who sent us? What do you say about yourself?”

23 He said: “I am

‘The voice of one crying in the wilderness:
“Make straight the way of the Lord,” ’

as the prophet Isaiah said.”

24 Now those who were sent were from the Pharisees. 25 And they asked him, saying, “Why then do you baptize if you are not the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?”

26 John answered them, saying, “I baptize with water, but there stands One among you whom you do not know. 27 It is He who, coming after me, [a]is preferred before me, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to loose.”

28 These things were done in [b]Bethabara beyond the Jordan, where John was baptizing.

Footnotes:

  1. John 1:27 ranks higher than I
  2. John 1:28 NU, M Bethany

New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

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Morning Psalm · Ps. 5

A Prayer for Guidance

To the Chief Musician. With [a]flutes. A Psalm of David.

Give ear to my words, O Lord,
Consider my [b]meditation.
Give heed to the voice of my cry,
My King and my God,
For to You I will pray.
My voice You shall hear in the morning, O Lord;
In the morning I will direct it to You,
And I will look up.

For You are not a God who takes pleasure in wickedness,
Nor shall evil [c]dwell with You.
The boastful shall not stand in Your sight;
You hate all workers of iniquity.
You shall destroy those who speak falsehood;
The Lord abhors the bloodthirsty and deceitful man.

But as for me, I will come into Your house in the multitude of Your mercy;
In fear of You I will worship toward [d]Your holy temple.
Lead me, O Lord, in Your righteousness because of my enemies;
Make Your way straight before my face.

For there is no [e]faithfulness in their mouth;
Their inward part is destruction;
Their throat is an open tomb;
They flatter with their tongue.
10 Pronounce them guilty, O God!
Let them fall by their own counsels;
Cast them out in the multitude of their transgressions,
For they have rebelled against You.

11 But let all those rejoice who put their trust in You;
Let them ever shout for joy, because You [f]defend them;
Let those also who love Your name
Be joyful in You.
12 For You, O Lord, will bless the righteous;
With favor You will surround him as with a shield.

Footnotes:

  1. Psalm 5:1 Heb. nehiloth
  2. Psalm 5:1 Lit. groaning
  3. Psalm 5:4 Lit. sojourn
  4. Psalm 5:7 Lit. the temple of Your holiness
  5. Psalm 5:9 uprightness
  6. Psalm 5:11 protect, lit. cover

New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

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First Reading · Is. 43:1-24

The Redeemer of Israel

43 But now, thus says the Lord, who created you, O Jacob,
And He who formed you, O Israel:
“Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by your name;
You are Mine.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
And through the rivers, they shall not overflow you.
When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned,
Nor shall the flame scorch you.
For I am the Lord your God,
The Holy One of Israel, your Savior;
I gave Egypt for your ransom,
Ethiopia and Seba in your place.
Since you were precious in My sight,
You have been honored,
And I have loved you;
Therefore I will give men for you,
And people for your life.
Fear not, for I am with you;
I will bring your descendants from the east,
And gather you from the west;
I will say to the north, ‘Give them up!’
And to the south, ‘Do not keep them back!’
Bring My sons from afar,
And My daughters from the ends of the earth—
Everyone who is called by My name,
Whom I have created for My glory;
I have formed him, yes, I have made him.”

Bring out the blind people who have eyes,
And the deaf who have ears.
Let all the nations be gathered together,
And let the people be assembled.
Who among them can declare this,
And show us former things?
Let them bring out their witnesses, that they may be justified;
Or let them hear and say, “It is truth.”
10 “You are My witnesses,” says the Lord,
“And My servant whom I have chosen,
That you may know and believe Me,
And understand that I am He.
Before Me there was no God formed,
Nor shall there be after Me.
11 I, even I, am the Lord,
And besides Me there is no savior.
12 I have declared and saved,
I have proclaimed,
And there was no foreign god among you;
Therefore you are My witnesses,”
Says the Lord, “that I am God.
13 Indeed before the day was, I am He;
And there is no one who can deliver out of My hand;
I work, and who will reverse it?”

14 Thus says the Lord, your Redeemer,
The Holy One of Israel:
“For your sake I will send to Babylon,
And bring them all down as fugitives—
The Chaldeans, who rejoice in their ships.
15 I am the Lord, your Holy One,
The Creator of Israel, your King.”

16 Thus says the Lord, who makes a way in the sea
And a path through the mighty waters,
17 Who brings forth the chariot and horse,
The army and the power
(They shall lie down together, they shall not rise;
They are extinguished, they are quenched like a wick):
18 “Do not remember the former things,
Nor consider the things of old.
19 Behold, I will do a new thing,
Now it shall spring forth;
Shall you not know it?
I will even make a road in the wilderness
And rivers in the desert.
20 The beast of the field will honor Me,
The jackals and the ostriches,
Because I give waters in the wilderness
And rivers in the desert,
To give drink to My people, My chosen.
21 This people I have formed for Myself;
They shall declare My praise.

Pleading with Unfaithful Israel

22 “But you have not called upon Me, O Jacob;
And you have been weary of Me, O Israel.
23 You have not brought Me the sheep for your burnt offerings,
Nor have you honored Me with your sacrifices.
I have not caused you to serve with grain offerings,
Nor wearied you with incense.
24 You have bought Me no sweet cane with money,
Nor have you satisfied Me with the fat of your sacrifices;
But you have burdened Me with your sins,
You have wearied Me with your iniquities.


New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

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Evening Psalm · Ps. 145

A Song of God’s Majesty and Love

A Praise of David.

145 I will [a]extol You, my God, O King;
And I will bless Your name forever and ever.
Every day I will bless You,
And I will praise Your name forever and ever.
Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised;
And His greatness is [b]unsearchable.

One generation shall praise Your works to another,
And shall declare Your mighty acts.
[c]I will meditate on the glorious splendor of Your majesty,
And [d]on Your wondrous works.
Men shall speak of the might of Your awesome acts,
And I will declare Your greatness.
They shall [e]utter the memory of Your great goodness,
And shall sing of Your righteousness.

The Lord is gracious and full of compassion,
Slow to anger and great in mercy.
The Lord is good to all,
And His tender mercies are over all His works.

10 All Your works shall praise You, O Lord,
And Your saints shall bless You.
11 They shall speak of the glory of Your kingdom,
And talk of Your power,
12 To make known to the sons of men His mighty acts,
And the glorious majesty of His kingdom.
13 Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,
And Your dominion endures throughout all [f]generations.

14 The Lord upholds all who fall,
And raises up all who are bowed down.
15 The eyes of all look expectantly to You,
And You give them their food in due season.
16 You open Your hand
And satisfy the desire of every living thing.

17 The Lord is righteous in all His ways,
Gracious in all His works.
18 The Lord is near to all who call upon Him,
To all who call upon Him in truth.
19 He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him;
He also will hear their cry and save them.
20 The Lord preserves all who love Him,
But all the wicked He will destroy.
21 My mouth shall speak the praise of the Lord,
And all flesh shall bless His holy name
Forever and ever.

Footnotes:

  1. Psalm 145:1 praise
  2. Psalm 145:3 Beyond our understanding
  3. Psalm 145:5 So with MT, Tg.; DSS, LXX, Syr., Vg. They
  4. Psalm 145:5 Lit. on the words of Your wondrous works
  5. Psalm 145:7 eagerly utter, lit. bubble forth
  6. Psalm 145:13 So with MT, Tg.; DSS, LXX, Syr., Vg. add The Lord is faithful in all His words, And holy in all His works

New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

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Second Reading · Rev. 9:13-10:11

Sixth Trumpet: The Angels from the Euphrates

13 Then the sixth angel sounded: And I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar which is before God, 14 saying to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, “Release the four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates.” 15 So the four angels, who had been prepared for the hour and day and month and year, were released to kill a third of mankind. 16 Now the number of the army of the horsemen was two hundred million; I heard the number of them. 17 And thus I saw the horses in the vision: those who sat on them had breastplates of fiery red, hyacinth blue, and sulfur yellow; and the heads of the horses were like the heads of lions; and out of their mouths came fire, smoke, and brimstone. 18 By these three plagues a third of mankind was killed—by the fire and the smoke and the brimstone which came out of their mouths. 19 For [a]their power is in their mouth and in their tails; for their tails are like serpents, having heads; and with them they do harm.

20 But the rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands, that they should not worship demons, and idols of gold, silver, brass, stone, and wood, which can neither see nor hear nor walk. 21 And they did not repent of their murders or their [b]sorceries or their sexual immorality or their thefts.

The Mighty Angel with the Little Book

10 I saw still another mighty angel coming down from heaven, clothed with a cloud. And a rainbow was on his head, his face was like the sun, and his feet like pillars of fire. He had a little book open in his hand. And he set his right foot on the sea and his left foot on the land, and cried with a loud voice, as when a lion roars. When he cried out, seven thunders uttered their voices. Now when the seven thunders [c]uttered their voices, I was about to write; but I heard a voice from heaven saying [d]to me, “Seal up the things which the seven thunders uttered, and do not write them.”

The angel whom I saw standing on the sea and on the land raised up his [e]hand to heaven and swore by Him who lives forever and ever, who created heaven and the things that are in it, the earth and the things that are in it, and the sea and the things that are in it, that there should be delay no longer, but in the days of the sounding of the seventh angel, when he is about to sound, the mystery of God would be finished, as He declared to His servants the prophets.

John Eats the Little Book

Then the voice which I heard from heaven spoke to me again and said, “Go, take the little book which is open in the hand of the angel who stands on the sea and on the earth.”

So I went to the angel and said to him, “Give me the little book.”

And he said to me, “Take and eat it; and it will make your stomach bitter, but it will be as sweet as honey in your mouth.”

10 Then I took the little book out of the angel’s hand and ate it, and it was as sweet as honey in my mouth. But when I had eaten it, my stomach became bitter. 11 And [f]he said to me, “You must prophesy again about many peoples, nations, tongues, and kings.”

Footnotes:

  1. Revelation 9:19 NU, M the power of the horses
  2. Revelation 9:21 NU, M drugs
  3. Revelation 10:4 NU, M sounded,
  4. Revelation 10:4 NU, M omit to me
  5. Revelation 10:5 NU, M right hand
  6. Revelation 10:11 NU, M they

New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

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Translations

ESV · NKJV · KJV