Grace unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ
News of the Order and commentary appear after the Proper Collect, Epistle andGospel
The Eleventh Sunday after Trinity
O GOD, who declarest thy almighty power chiefly in showing mercy and pity; Mercifully grant unto us such a measure of thy grace, that we may obtain thy gracious promises, and be made partakers of thy heavenly treasure; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Source: Gelasius [492-496]. This is the original as Cranmer translated it faithfully, It it was altered in the 1662 update by adding the phrase " running the way of thy commandments" The Collect's emphasis on Grace, compliments the story of the Pharisee and the Publican praying in today's Gospel story from Luke.
Arise, and let us flee; for we shall not else escape from Absalom
You are bishops whose jurisdiction is within the church, but I also am a bishop, ordained by God to oversee those outside the church."
Road to Nicaea is an interesting article on the first Ecumenical Council in which I found some ideas that I had not encountered elsewhere, like the suggested number of bishops, there localities, and the suggested source of the key word of the Creed " of the same substance".
Today's quote reminds us that Constantine took seriously his role as moral leader. He stopped Gladiatorial Combat and initiated many secular moral reforms. This web page discusses some of hisreforms for Rome:
Today's homily by Augustine is on Psalm LIV. It has been considered by many to point to the situation with his son, Absalom, which is addressed in the OT Lesson at the link above and the artwork of David fleeing Absalom. David well knew Absalom was an evil and ambitious man, out to kill his father; yet he never kept praying that Absalom would be spared, and end the end all things would work for better. Compare this desire of David with the commentary of Augustine below, as he identifies David's psalm with the plight of our Lord, and God's sovereignty in exercising judgement. Just this morning, in a rendezvous with a very old and dear friend, we discussed those today who in the church disparage their fellow, especially other Christians, judging and condemning them. God is sovereign. He alone will judge and condemn or save. As Augustine says below: let God sparing evil men profit thee, so that thou show mercy. In today's collect we pray for God's grace and his mercy, may he merciful grant you the Grace to follow our Lord's example amongst strangers and fellows, and may he bring the evil man to repentance and life everlasting in his eternal Kingdom
"Hear Thou, O God, my entreaty, and despise not my prayer: give heed unto me, and hearken unto me"
Of one earnest, anxious, of one set in tribulation, are these words. He is praying, suffering many things, from evil yearning to be delivered: it remaineth that we hear in what evil he is, and when he beginneth to speak, let us acknowledge there ourselves to be; in order that the tribulation being shared, we may conjoin prayer. "I have been made sad in my exercise, and have been troubled" (ver. 2). Where made sad, where troubled? "In my exercise," he saith. Of evil men, whom he suffereth, he hath made mention, and the same suffering of evil men he hath called his "exercise." Think ye not that without profit there are evil men in this world, and that no good God maketh of them. Every evil man either on this account liveth that he may be corrected, or on this account liveth that through him a good man may be exercised. O that therefore they that do now exercise us would be converted, and together with us be exercised! Nevertheless, so long as they are such as to exercise, let us not hate them: because in that wherein any one of them is evil, whether unto the end he is to persevere, we know not; and ofttimes when to thyself thou seemest to have been hating an enemy, thou hast been hating a brother, and knowest not. The devil and his angels in the holy Scriptures have been manifested to us, that for fire everlasting they have been destined. Of them only must amendment be despaired of....Therefore since this rule of Love for thee is fixed, that imitating the Father thou shouldest love an enemy: for, He saith, "love your enemies:" in this precept how wouldest thou be exercised, if thou hadst no enemy to suffer? Thou seest then that he profiteth thee somewhat: and let God sparing evil men profit thee, so that thou show mercy: because perchance thou too, if thou art a good man, out of an evil man hast been made a good man: and if God spared not evil men, not even thou wouldest be found to return thanks. May He therefore spare others, that hath spared thee also. For it were not right, when thou hadst passed through, to close up the way of godliness.