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in the cross of Jesus
we see the cost of our sin
and the depth of your love:
in humble hope and fear
may we place at his feet
all that we have and all that we are,
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Since the law has only a shadow of the good things to come and not the true form of these realities, it can never, by the same sacrifices that are continually offered year after year, make perfect those who approach. Otherwise, would they not have ceased being offered, since the worshippers, cleansed once for all, would no longer have any consciousness of sin? But in these sacrifices there is a reminder of sin year after year. For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins. Consequently, when Christ came into the world, he said,
‘Sacrifices and offerings you have not desired,
but a body you have prepared for me;
in burnt-offerings and sin-offerings
you have taken no pleasure.
Then I said, “See, God, I have come to do your will, O God”
(in the scroll of the book it is written of me).’
When he said above, ‘You have neither desired nor taken pleasure in sacrifices and offerings and burnt-offerings and sin-offerings’ (these are offered according to the law), then he added, ‘See, I have come to do your will.’ He abolishes the first in order to establish the second. And it is by God’s will that we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
Save me, O God,
for the waters have come up, even to my neck.
I sink in deep mire where there is no foothold;
I have come into deep waters and the flood sweeps over me.
I have grown weary with crying; my throat is raw;
my eyes have failed from looking so long for my God.
Those who hate me without any cause
are more than the hairs of my head;
Those who would destroy me are mighty;
my enemies accuse me falsely:
must I now give back what I never stole?
O God, you know my foolishness,
and my faults are not hidden from you.
Let not those who hope in you
be put to shame through me, Lord God of hosts;
let not those who seek you be disgraced because of me,
O God of Israel.
For your sake have I suffered reproach;
shame has covered my face.
I have become a stranger to my kindred,
an alien to my mother’s children.
Zeal for your house has eaten me up;
the scorn of those who scorn you has fallen upon me.
I humbled myself with fasting,
but that was turned to my reproach.
I put on sackcloth also
and became a byword among them.
Those who sit at the gate murmur against me,
and the drunkards make songs about me.
But as for me, I make my prayer to you, O Lord;
at an acceptable time, O God.
Answer me, O God, in the abundance of your mercy
and with your sure salvation.
Draw me out of the mire, that I sink not;
let me be rescued from those who hate me
and out of the deep waters.
Let not the water flood drown me,
neither the deep swallow me up;
let not the Pit shut its mouth upon me.
Answer me, Lord, for your loving-kindness is good;
turn to me in the multitude of your mercies.
Hide not your face from your servant;
be swift to answer me, for I am in trouble.
Draw near to my soul and redeem me;
deliver me because of my enemies.
You know my reproach, my shame and my dishonour;
my adversaries are all in your sight.
Reproach has broken my heart; I am full of heaviness.
I looked for some to have pity, but there was no one,
neither found I any to comfort me.
They gave me gall to eat,
and when I was thirsty, they gave me vinegar to drink.
Let the table before them be a trap
and their sacred feasts a snare.
Let their eyes be darkened, that they cannot see,
and give them continual trembling in their loins.
Pour out your indignation upon them,
and let the heat of your anger overtake them.
Let their camp be desolate,
and let there be no one to dwell in their tents.
For they persecute the one whom you have stricken,
and increase the sorrows of him whom you have pierced.
Lay to their charge guilt upon guilt,
and let them not receive your vindication.
Let them be wiped out of the book of the living
and not be written among the righteous.
As for me, I am poor and in misery;
your saving help, O God, will lift me up.
I will praise the name of God with a song;
I will proclaim his greatness with thanksgiving.
This will please the Lord more than an offering of oxen,
more than bulls with horns and hooves.
The humble shall see and be glad;
you who seek God, your heart shall live.
For the Lord listens to the needy,
and his own who are imprisoned he does not despise.
Let the heavens and the earth praise him,
the seas and all that moves in them;
For God will save Zion and rebuild the cities of Judah;
they shall live there and have it in possession.
The children of his servants shall inherit it,
and they that love his name shall dwell therein.