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Third Sunday after Trinity MMXII

O GOD, the protector of all who trust in thee, without whom nothing is strong and nothing is holy; multiply upon us thy mercy; that, thou being our ruler, we may so pass through good things temporal, so as to lose not the eternal. Through our Lord.

( note this collect form is used in the 4th Sunday in the 1928 BCP but on the 3rd in the Lutheran book )


Protector in te sperantium Deus, sine quo nihil est validum, nihil sanctum, multiplica super nos misericordiam tuam, ut te rectare, te duce sic transeamus per bona temporalia, ut non amittamua aeterna, per Dnm.
Gelasian Sacramentary

Introit: Turn thee unto me and have mercy upon me
Ps: Unto thee O Lord do I lift up my soul
Epistle: 1 Peter 5:6-11.  Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God. 
Gradual: Cast thy burden upon the Lord
Gospel:  Luke 15:1-10. Then drew near to him all the publicans and sinners

This collect contains yet another small confession of a different aspect of God's glorious attributes this Sunday.  The first Sunday it was his strength given to us.  Last Sunday his steering of his people. This Sunday we confess him as our protector and the very source of our holiness. 

In acknowledging these attributes, we ask more and more of his mercy and grace in our lives. As we sojourn in this wilderness seeking our real home we humbly beg his constant leadership so as to help us navigate through all the good material things,  so that we may gain the eternal good of everlasting felicity in his kingdom

"Pass through" is how this prayer presents this petition. There are so many who do not make it. They find the good material things in this life and build their faith and hope around them to the loss of their soul. David in the psalms warned against the folly of princes who put their trust in temporal wealth and strength -- and the wisdom of the humble who,  on the other hand, fully acknowledged and relied on God. 

Our success is dependent on our vision and focus. CS Lewis put it this way, "Aim at heaven and you will get earth thrown in. Aim at earth and you get neither." 

There are good things God has made for all men. Some are fortunate to enjoy an abundance of the good he has placed here,  but when those things displace God, then men become shallow,  perverted, hypocritical, and blind to the love of God for the love of the created.  Material worship is a most deceptive form of idolatry; man cannot serve God and manna. 

The Good News is that God answers this little prayer.   He rules his own and protects them from temptation and weakness.   He gives holy strength to them so they may navigate under his guiding hand. If they should become temporarily diverted, he disciplines them and guides them through the material temptations of this present world to finally come into his joy. 


An homily of Abrose that touches on the epistle and today's collect


(Portions were paraphrased and passages cited from The Collect of the Day, by Paul Zeller Strodach, 1939, The United Lutheran Press, Philadelphia)
The Ancient Collect: Its history and form

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