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Psalm 4

Worship Words: April 18, 2021

Psalm 4 Paraphrase by Barb Hedges-Goettl                                                                                                                                                      

God, you are right and just and true.

When I call with a loud cry,

    You answer me.

You widen the straits of distress

   that bind and besiege me.

When my world is small, narrow, and cramped,

  You give me room to breathe.

When I am stuck between a rock and hard place,

   You let me loose in your broad, wide pasture.

You bend to me in kindness and mercy,

    understanding my prayer.

How long will people hurt God’s reputation

     and damage God’s honor and glory?

How long will we love empty words,

     seeking lies and requiring falsehoods,

     and yearning after worthless things?

Set us aside for yourself, O Lord.

     Make us your good and faithful ones,

     Your kind and godly ones,

     Your saints by Your mercy.

O Lord, hear me when I call to you.

When I am trembling and quivering,

       Agitated and disturbed,

       Angry and disquieted,

       Worried and anxious,

             Keep me from sin.

Inspire me to meditate on you at night.

    Put me to bed and tuck me in with your comfort.

    Whisper to the ears of my heart, that I may hear you.

    Quiet and calm me in my whole being.

I confess my dependence on you.

    Enable me to wait upon you

    With confidence and patience.

I offer myself in thanksgiving;

    I give myself to you because of your mercy.

    I respond to your love with love of my own.

    I respond to the all you give me

        With my all.

I put my trust in you.

    I hold out my hand for your hand.

    I offer my heart to your heart.

    I offer my mind to your purposes.

    I offer my body to your body.

Be my hope,

      my boldness,

      my security,

      my confidence,

             my God.

There are many who say:

       “Oh, that we might perceive some good!”

Shine your light upon us, O God!

        Make your presence dawn upon us.

Give us joy and gladness

        at our deepest heart of hearts–

Joy greater than a bountiful harvest

         or material riches.

Bestow gladness in our very being,

         A share in your joy.

We will lie down and sleep;

         We will be stilled and remain at peace,

         dwelling in God’s house,

         where we can safely lie down.

Thanks be to God.

Opening Prayer(adapted from Psalm 4) by Barb Hedges-Goettl

My God,

Be my hope,

      my boldness,

      my security,

      my confidence,

My God.

Call to Worship (adapted from Psalm 4) by Barb Hedges-Goettl

There are many who say:

       “Oh, that we might perceive some good!”

Shine your light upon us, O God!

        Make your presence dawn upon us.

Give us joy and gladness

        at our deepest heart of hearts–

Joy greater than a bountiful harvest

         or material riches.

Bestow gladness in our very being,

         A share in your joy.

Confession of Faith in the Good News cf. Acts 3 (RCL) and Acts 6-7 (NL) by Barb Hedges-Goettl                                                                                                                         

We believe and receive the Good News. We experience God’s confounding of the evil of crucifixion with the grace of resurrection.  We participate in God’s conversion of mourning into dancing. We are dressed in grave clothes made over into glad rags. We are lifted up from the grave and given new life. God lifts us up from down-and-out to up-and-at-‘em. For this Good News, we give thanks to God. Amen.

Prayer of thanks for a witness by Barb Hedges-Goettl

God, we thank you that we have a witness. You bear witness to yourself:  You proclaim that we are made in your image, and that image is very good.Jesus proclaims love for all people, the sacrificial love of a Shepherd for the sheep.The Spirit proclaims you with sighs too deep for words.

O God, we thank you that we have a witness. Witnesses have come before us: Prophets proclaim your justice for all people, rolling down like waters. The women at the tomb proclaim your confounding of evil and death through the resurrection. Astounding the crowd by healing the lame, Peter witnesses to forgiveness and resurrection. Condemned by false witnesses, Stephen witnesses to the Son of Man and forgiveness.

O God, we thank you that we have a witness. Witnesses are all around us:Give us ears to hear voices long silenced, peoples whose experiences challenge and correct our own. Fill our hearts with love for the diverse ways in which you speak, that we know and hear your word through each person’s own experience, and so honor your image and your presence in each one we meet.

O God, we thank you that we have a witness. Make us witnesses going forward, sharing what we have known, what we have heard:  your love, your hope, and the Good News of the resurrected life  redeemed from evil, death and all that would separate us from you and from one another.

In Jesus’ name and by the power of the Spirit we pray, Amen.

The below are from Rev. Katy Stenta, see https://katyandtheword.com/2021/04/13/prayers-for-acts-6-stoning-of-stephen/?fbclid=IwAR3hB6dxy9lTay-hhKQB1fNNGEWd6t6qPogFHHIt7j1lFjfox1L8VT5vaUw

Prayers for Acts 6: Stoning of Stephen

Acts 6:1-7:2, 44-60

Suggest Pairing Isaiah 66:1-2, 22-23

Call to Worship (based on Isaiah 66:13-14, ) 

God promises, asa  mother comforts her child, so I will comfort you

We shall see, and our hearts shall rejoice. 

Come let us pray for the Lord, for God is Good. 

Come let all flesh give God Thanks and Praise. 

Prayer of Confession: God, we confess that we find comfort in tradition. We have struggled throughout this year as so many things have had to change. Walk with us this spring and we try to understand what it is we need to keep, and what it is we can leave behind. Help us to choose, always and forever, the ways that lead us closer to your kingdom. In Christ’s name we pray. Amen 

Assurance of Pardon: God’s promises to remake heaven and earth in God’s forgiveness. Let us share the good news with one another: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven.

Prayer of Dedication: (unison) Lord, let us go forth giving thanks for all that is good. Place praise for you on our lips and on our tongues, that others might see and know and understand your love. In Christ’s name we pray. Amen.

Hymns: Morning Has Broken, Jesu Jesus Fill Us with Your Love, Called as Partners to Christ’s Service, Great is Thy Faithfulness, Amazing Grace,

Psalms in a Time of Sickness: Psalm 4

Psalm 4

O God, you are right and just and true.

When I call with a loud cry,

    You answer me.

You widen the straits of distress

   that bind and besiege me.

When my world is small, narrow, and cramped,

  You give me room to breathe.

When I am stuck between a rock and hard place,

   You let me loose in your broad, wide pasture.

You bend to me in kindness and mercy,

    understanding my prayer.

How long will people hurt God’s reputation

     and damage God’s honor and glory?

How long will we love empty words,

     seeking lies and requiring falsehoods,

     and yearning after worthless things?

Set us aside for yourself, O Lord.

     Make us your good and faithful ones,

     Your kind and godly ones,

     Your saints by Your mercy.

O Lord, hear me when I call to you.

When I am trembling and quivering,

       Agitated and disturbed,

       Angry and disquieted,

       Worried and anxious,

             Keep me from sin.

Inspire me to meditate on you at night.

    Put me to bed and tuck me in with your comfort.

    Whisper to the ears of my heart, that I may hear you.

    Quiet and calm me in my whole being.

I confess my dependence on you.

    Enable me to wait upon you

    With confidence and patience.

I offer myself in thanksgiving;

    I give myself to you because of your mercy.

    I respond to your love with love of my own.

    I respond to the all you give me

        With my all.

I put my trust in you.

    I hold out my hand for your hand.

    I offer my heart to your heart.

    I offer my mind to your purposes.

    I offer my body to your body.

Be my hope,

      my boldness,

      my security,

      my confidence,

             my God.

There are many who say:

       “Oh, that we might perceive some good!”

Shine your light upon us, O God!

        Make your presence dawn upon us.

Give us joy and gladness

        at our deepest heart of hearts–

Joy greater than a bountiful harvest

         or material riches.

Bestow gladness in our very being,

         A share in your joy.

We will lie down and sleep;

         We will be stilled and remain at peace,

         dwelling in God’s house,

         where we can safely lie down.

Thanks be to God.

Seeds for Narrative Lectionary for September 23, 2018: Joseph in Prison Genesis 39:1-23 (Matt 5:11-12)

 

HYMNS

ELW-Evangelical Lutheran Worship (from NL website)

God himself is present openhymnal.org

Arise your light has come ELW314

Goodness is stronger than evil ELW 721

 

Presbyterian Hymnal (1993) 

These hymns are primarily for the viewpoint of what Joseph could’ve been saying when imprisoned

If there is a number after the decimal, it refers to the verse addressing the them                  Hymns in bold print are thought to particularly address the named theme                    Parentheses mean that the theme is not explicitly mentioned

God’s Faithfulness

251 Your Faithfulness is Sure, O God

276 Great Is Thy Faithfulness

Assurance of God’s Presence

170.3 The Lord’s My Shepherd, I’ll Not Want

172.2 My Shepherd Will Supply My Need

173.2 Psalm 23

(174.3) The Lord’s My Shepherd

248 You Are Before Me, Lord (Psalm 139)

Note: Margaret Wise Brown’s picture book, Runaway Bunny, is a good parable of God constantly holding us as in Psalm 139.  https://youtu.be/kj3c99efFsA

(269) O God of Bethel, by Whose Hand

342.1 By Gracious Powers

361 How Firm a Foundation

407 When a Poor One

446.3 Glorious Things of Thee Are Spoken

461 God is Here!

483.3 Sing Praise to God, Who Reigns Above

LIBERATION: GOD HAS LIBERATED

112.1 Christ the Lord Is Risen Again

114.1 Come, Ye Faithful, Raise the Strain

115.1 Come, Ye Faithful, Raise the Strain

153.2 He Is King of Kings

168.2 Lord, Why Have You Forsaken Me

205 All Hail to God’s Anointed

237 When God Delivered Israel

334 When Israel Was in Egypt’s Land

604 Song of Simeon (Nunc Dimittis)

LIBERATION: GOD LIBERATES

222.6 Psalm 103

243.4 We Thank You, Lord, for You Are Good

253.2+3 I’ll Praise My Maker

254.7+8 Psalm 146

423.4 Jesus Shall Reign Where’er the Sun

466.3 O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing

478.3 Praise, My Soul, the King of Heaven

600 Song of Mary (Magnificat)

LIBERATION: GOD WILL LIBERATE

18 The Desert Shall Rejoice

205 All Hail to God’s Anointed

219.3 To God Compose a Song of Joy

332 Live Into Hope

401 When Will People Cease Their Fighting?

445 Great Day!

601 Song of Zechariah (Benedictus)

602 Song of Zechariah (Benedictus)

LIBERATION: OUR RESPONSIBILITY

274.3 O God of Earth and Space

291.3 O God of Earth and Altar

311 We Meet You, O Christ

332 Live Into Hope

334 When Israel Was in Egypt’s Land

401 When Will People Cease Their Fighting?

411 Arise, Your Light Is Come!

420.4 God of Grace and God of Glory

428.4 We Give Thee but Thine Own

434 Today We All Are Called to Be Disciples

443.3 O Christ, the Great Foundation

552 Give Thanks, O Christian People

563 Lift Every Voice and Sing

 LIBERATION: PRAYER FOR

1 Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus

2 Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus

9 O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

204 Psalm 72

237.3 When God Delivered Israel

291.3 O God of Earth and Altar

(321.4) Holy Spirit, Truth Divine

343.3 Called as Partners in Christ’s Service

(351.2) Give to Me, Lord, a Thankful Heart

(353.2) Great God, Your Love Has Called Us Here

378 Make Me a Captive, Lord

427.2 Lord, Whose Love Through Humble Service

555.2 Now Thank We All Our God

PRISON/PRISONER

9.1 O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

253.3 I’ll Praise My Maker

(321.4) Holy Spirit, Truth Divine

411.2 Arise, Your Light Is Come!

423.4 Jesus Shall Reign Where’er the Sun

466.3 O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing

CHORAL A Blessing, Howard Don Small

 

From Glory to God PCUSA 2013

772 Live into Hope

773 Heaven Shall Not Wait

776 O God, Be Gracious (Psalm 4)

777 How Long, O Lord (Psalm 13)

779 How Long, O Lord, Will My Prayers Be in Vain?

782 Hear My Prayer, O God (Psalm 143)

786 Why Stand So Far Away, My God (Psalm 10)

790 In Silence My Soul Thirsts (Psalm 62)

841 God is My Strong Salvation (Psalm 27)

842 The Lord is My Light (Psalm 27)

845 To the Hills I Lift My Eyes (Psalm 121)

851 Come, Bring Your Burdens to the Lord

Note: One might search other hymnals for hymns connected to the psalms listed above, or do the same at hymnary.org or other online hymn source.

Wondered if others in these categories from the index, p. 949ff, might apply

Assurance

Love of God for Us

Sovereignty of God

 

Original materials                                                                                                                        You may print/adapt but please credit: © Barbara Hedges-Goettl

The psalms above seem to indicate what Joseph might be saying to God;                                 therefore, I have taken them as texts for the original resources below:

 

Confession of Faith:

Psalm 4 (primarily from the NRSV)

Our righteous God answers me when I call.                                                                          God gives relief from my distress;
God has mercy on me and hears my prayer.

When people turn glory into shame,                                                                                      when people love delusions and seek false gods,                                                               God still sets apart faithful servants for God’s own service.                                                 God hears when these servants call.

So we tremble and do not sin;                                                                                                 when we are on our beds,                                                                                                             we search our hearts and are silent.                                                                                       We offer the sacrifices of the righteous.                                                                                       We trust in the Lord.

When people ask, “Who will bring us prosperity?”                                                               we respond by asking the light of God’s face to shine on us.                                                 The gladness God gives us is far greater than their joys at harvest,                                    as they gaze on their bountiful crops.

In peace we will lie down and sleep,
   for God alone makes us dwell in safety.

Note: See also The Message paraphrase of this psalm, https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=psalm4&version=MSG

 

Prayers of Intercession from Psalm 13 (part for “Many” is from v. 3, 5):

One: When betrayal comes,                                                                                                      Many: O Lord our God, we trust in your steadfast love.  Consider and answer us.  One: When loneliness takes the place of family and friends,                                            Many: O Lord our God, we trust in your steadfast love.  Consider and answer us.  One: When pain has to be borne,                                                                                            Many: O Lord our God, we trust in your steadfast love.  Consider and answer us.  One: When needs are large and resources small,                                                                        Many: O Lord our God, we trust in your steadfast love.  Consider and answer us.    One: When darkness is overpowering,                                                                                  Many: O Lord our God, we trust in your steadfast love.  Consider and answer us.  One: When it’s hard to know what to do,                                                                                  Many: O Lord our God, we trust in your steadfast love.  Consider and answer us.  One: When divisions deepen,                                                                                                   Many: O Lord our God, we trust in your steadfast love.  Consider and answer us.  One: When words wound and inaction lets those words stand,                                             Many: O Lord our God, we trust in your steadfast love.  Consider and answer us.   One: When God’s bounty is evident,                                                                                       Many: O Lord our God, we trust in your steadfast love.  Consider and answer us.   One: When salvation beckons,                                                                                                 Many: O Lord our God, we trust in your steadfast love.  Consider and answer us.   One: When light dawns and songs are sung,                                                                       Many: O Lord our God, we trust in your steadfast love.  Consider and answer us.

Prayers for individual needs or lifting up of particular names may take place here

ALL: O Lord our God, we trust in your steadfast love.  Consider and answer us.

 

Calls to Worship

Psalm 13:5-6 (The Message)

I’ve thrown myself headlong into your arms—
I’m celebrating your rescue.
I’m so full of answered prayers,
I’m singing at the top of my lungs [should be followed by a song!]

Psalm 27: 4, 8-9 (NIV)

One: One thing I ask from the Lord,
Many: this only do I seek:
One: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord
all the days of my life,
Many: to gaze on the beauty of the Lord
    and to seek him in his temple.

ALL: Come, together let us seek the Lord.

[Prayer of invocation could go here instead of at reading of Scripture]

 

 In addition to the themes of the psalms that could reflect Joseph’s situation, see also:

COMMENTARY:

https://www.workingpreacher.org/narrative_podcast.aspx

https://www.workingpreacher.org/preaching.aspx?commentary_id=3809

 

FROM ATLA

If you’re a seminary grad, you likely have alum access at your seminary.

 

Tamar and Joseph in Genesis 38 and 39

Bekins, Peter

Journal for the Study of the Old Testament, June 2016, Vol.40(4), pp.375-397

story of Joseph and his master’s wife in Genesis 39. If… his master’s wife in Genesis 39. This episode appears… positions of Genesis 38 and 39. In

PEER REVIEWED

Full text available 

 

ARTICLE

CONFRONTING REDUNDANCY As MIDDLE MANAGER AND WIFE: THE FEISTY WOMAN OF GENESIS 39 [1]

Mckay, Heather A.

Semeia, Summer, 1999, p.215

: Uncovering the Woman in Genesis 39." Pp. 318-42… Potiphar's wife (Genesis 39) using a reader-response… . A READING OF GENESIS 39

PEER REVIEWED

Full text available 

 

 

DISSERTATION

Powerplay in Potiphar’s house: The interplay of gender, ethnicity, and *class in Genesis 39

Junior, Nyasha Sakenfeld, Katharine Doob (advisor) 2008

ProQuest Dissertations and Theses

Wife: The Feisty Woman of Genesis 39.” Semeia 87 (1999… CLASS IN GENESIS 39 A DISSERTATION SUBMITTED TO THE… . Within this story, Genesis 39 constitutes

Full text available 

 

 

ARTICLE

Madam Potiphar’s Boy Toy: No Laughing Matter

Zucker, David

Women in Judaism, Spring 2011, Vol.8(1), pp.1-11

gender, ethnicity, and class in Genesis 39,” Princeton… . In Genesis 39, Madam Potiphar’s use of the verb…Genesis are familiar with the outline of chapter

PEER REVIEWED

Full text available 

 

 

Theme: The clothes unmake the man?

ARTICLE

Divestiture, Deception, and Demotion: The Garment Motif inGenesis 37–39

Huddlestun, John R

Journal for the Study of the Old Testament, June 2002, Vol.26(4), pp.47-62

reading of Genesis 37­39 suggests that, as far as the… Genesis 39, Alter draws attention to a number of… , Deception, and Demotion: The Garment Motif in Genesis 37

Note: My husband feels there is a message here about (male) vulnerability and the lack of recognition of this possibility/reality

 

Prayer touching clothing angle:

O God, we say that “clothes make the man,”

but in Joseph’s case, clothes unmade the man.

His fancy robe gave rise to jealousy and was used to “prove” his death to his father.

The robe he abandoned in the hand of Potiphar’s wife was used to frame him.

 

God, protect us from the tendency to be defined by outward things,

by what is seen and worn. Deepen our gaze, that we may see with our hearts,

for what is essential is invisible to the eye.[1]

 

See image with quote from The Little Prince, featured image.                                                  [1] From The Little Prince, by Antoine de Saint Expéry

 

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