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Third Sunday after Easter - 2013

The Third Sunday after Easter.
Psalm 119
( . . . )
In quo corriget?
WHEREWITHAL shall a young man cleanse his way : even by ruling himself after thy word.
10. With my whole heart have I sought thee : O let me not go wrong out of thy commandments.
11. Thy words have I hid within my heart : that I should not sin against thee.
( . . . )

The Collect.
ALMIGHTY God, who shewest to them that be in error the light of thy truth, to the intent that they may return into the way of righteousness; Grant unto all them that are admitted into the fellowship of Christ’s Religion, that they may eschew those things that are contrary to their profession, and follow all such things as are agreeable to the same; through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

Old Testament Reading: 1 Samuel 2.1b-10
Psalter: Psalm 120, 121, 122 | 123, 124, 125
Epistle Reading: 1 Peter 2.11-17
Gospel Reading: St. John 16.16-24

Barbee and Zahl: “This Collect is from the Sacramentary of Leo I and is one of the oldest in the Prayer Book. The petition reflects the fact that Easter is a principle time for baptism, thus the reference to “all them that be admitted into the fellowship of Christ’s religion” [Lat. Qui Christiana professione censentor – who are enrolled as Christians by profession]. ( . . . ) The Collect for the Third Sunday after Easter draws its power from the relation it represents between “the light of thy truth” and “the way of righteousness.” We might have expected the Collect to posit God’s showing forth His light to all “that be in error,” to the intent that we would return to His truth. But no! The intent of our receiving His light is, in the Prayer Book logic, that we return to “the way of righteousness.” Truth creates right doing! How can this be so? Truth here must be something potent in practice. It must be more than abstraction. It must be more than principles or correct thinking. It is in fact relationship. It is fellowship with God, to use the Collect’s phrase. Truth enables relationship. The link between truth and relationship is the truth about ourselves in the light of the truth about God. When we are truly known, particularly in the darkness and shadows of our lives, by a Love which does not reject, we are cemented to God. To be known in truth and at the same time loved is the coup de grace to our retreat from relationship. If what you believe is God’s truth (grace) and your truth (the way you really are), the fruit of your belief will be works of righteousness and “all such things as are agreeable to the same.” The relation between what you believe and what you do will be of cement, or better, of steel” (56-7).

Primus Pilus II

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