The Second Sunday after Easter.
WHEN I was in trouble I called upon the Lord : and he heard me.
2. Deliver my soul, O Lord, from lying lips : and from a deceitful tongue.
3. What reward shall be given or done unto thee, thou false tongue : even mighty and sharp arrows, with hot burning coals.
4. Woe is me, that I am constrained to dwell with Mesech : and to have my habitation among the tents of Kedar.
5. My soul hath long dwelt among them : that are enemies unto peace.
6. I labour for peace, but when I speak unto them thereof : they make them ready to battle.
ALMIGHTY God, who has given thine only Son to be unto us both a sacrifice for sin, and also an ensample of godly life; Give us grace that we may always most thankfully receive that his inestimable benefit, and also daily endeavour ourselves to follow the blessed steps of his most holy life; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Old Testament Reading: Isaiah 40.1-11
Psalter: Psalm 21, 23 | 116, 117
Epistle Reading: 1 Peter 2.19-25
Gospel Reading: St. John 10.11-16
Toon: “( . . . ) In the petition of this Collect we recognize that the presence in baptized Christians, of the effects of sin, even as they aspire to holiness, need to be dealt with. These effects stay with us as long as we are in our mortal bodies with our human nature on this earth in this evil age. Thus the prayer is for grace, the assistance of divine help and mercy, for a thankful, receptive, believing and trusting heart, to recognize and appropriate the amazing and eternal nature of the GIFT that is in the Gospel. A truly thankful heart is a great motivation to seek to do God's holy will.
The petition is also a request for the commitment, determination and help needed by a baptized Christian to imitate the life of Jesus, to see him as the supreme example for the Christian to follow, day by day until his life's end. ("To endeavour oneself" is a reflexive verb not much in use today - cf. "The Form and Manner of Making Deacons" in the Ordinal, found bound within the BCP, and the seventh answer to the questions, "I will endeavour myself, the Lord being my helper...").
The particular feature of Christ's example brought out by the Epistle is the bearing patiently undeserved indignities and rough treatment ( 1 Peter 2:23).
Thus Jesus, the Christ, the Saviour of the world, is for the Church both God's GIFT and God's EXAMPLE; and, in receiving the gift and following the example, Christian people will be truly what they are called to be - the Body of Christ on earth. This is a most appropriate message for Eastertide!
The Collect above was written by Archbishop Cranmer in 1549 and replaced this Collect found in the Sarum Missal: O God, who by thy Son's humbling himself hast raised up a fallen world: Grant unto thy faithful people perpetual joy, that they whom thou hast snatched from the dangers of perpetual death, may be brought by thee to the fruition of eternal joys. Through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen” (There is more to be found here: http://www.pbs.org.uk/the-bcp/second-sunday-after-easter).