Sunday 17 October

God, the giver of life,
whose Holy Spirit wells up within your Church:
by the Spirit’s gifts equip us to live the gospel of Christ
   and make us eager to do your will,
that we may share with the whole creation
   the joys of eternal life;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.  Amen.

Job 38.1–41
Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind:
‘Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge?
Gird up your loins like a man,
   I will question you, and you shall declare to me. ‘Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth?
   Tell me, if you have understanding.
Who determined its measurements—surely you know!
   Or who stretched the line upon it?
On what were its bases sunk,
   or who laid its cornerstone
when the morning stars sang together
   and all the heavenly beings shouted for joy?
‘Can you lift up your voice to the clouds,
   so that a flood of waters may cover you?
Can you send forth lightnings, so that they may go
   and say to you, “Here we are”?
Who has put wisdom in the inward parts,
   or given understanding to the mind?
Who has the wisdom to number the clouds?
   Or who can tilt the waterskins of the heavens,
when the dust runs into a mass
   and the clods cling together?
‘Can you hunt the prey for the lion,
   or satisfy the appetite of the young lions,
when they crouch in their dens,
   or lie in wait in their covert?
Who provides for the raven its prey,
   when its young ones cry to God,
   and wander about for lack of food?

Psalm 134 & 137.1–6
  Come, bless the Lord, all you servants of the Lord,
   you that by night stand in the house of the Lord.
  Lift up your hands towards the sanctuary
   and bless the Lord.
  The Lord who made heaven and earth
   give you blessing out of Zion.

  By the waters of Babylon we sat down and wept,
   when we remembered Zion.
  As for our lyres, we hung them up
   on the willows that grow in that land.
  For there our captors asked for a song,
      our tormentors called for mirth:
   ‘Sing us one of the songs of Zion.’
  How shall we sing the Lord’s song
   in a strange land?
  If I forget you, O Jerusalem,
   let my right hand forget its skill.
  Let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth
      if I do not remember you,
   if I set not Jerusalem above my highest joy.