Sunday, July 26 2020
"It is one thing to say with the Prophet Amos, 'Let justice roll down like mighty waters,' and quite another to work out the irrigation system."
William Sloane Coffin
Call To Worship in Prayer
from Psalm 90:1-2,4

Lord, You have been our dwelling place in all generations.
Before the mountains were brought forth,
or ever You had formed the earth and the world,
from everlasting to everlasting You are God.
For a thousand years in Your sight
are like yesterday when it is past,
or like a watch in the night.
Let us worship God!

Hymn Kum Ba Yah (Come by here, Lord)

Assurance Of Forgiveness adapted from Amos 5:14-15
Seek good and not evil, that you may live;
and so the Lord, the God of hosts will be with you.
Hate evil and love good, and establish justice in the gate;
the Lord, the GOd of hosts, will be gracious.
Thanks be to God!
Encountering God's Word
Prayer for Illumination
Holy Spirit, strip away our pretense or anything else that deflects your word. Create in us an open heart, ready to be transformed. Amen.

Amos 1:1; 5:21-24; 8:1-6; 9:11-15

The words of Amos, who was among the shepherds of Tekoa, which he saw concerning Israel in the days of King Uzziah of Judah and in the days of King Jeroboam son of Joash of Israel, two years before the earthquake.

I hate, I despise your festivals,
     and I take no delight in your solemn assemblies.
Even though you offer me your burnt offerings and grain offerings,
     I will not accept them;
and the offerings of well-being of your fatted animals
     I will not look upon.
Take away from me the noise of your songs;
     I will not listen to the melody of your harps.
But let justice roll down like waters,
     and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.

This is what the Lord God showed me—a basket of summer fruit. He said, “Amos, what do you see?” And I said, “A basket of summer fruit." Then the Lord said to me,
“The end has come upon my people Israel;
     I will never again pass them by.
The songs of the temple shall become wailings in that day,”
says the Lord God;
“the dead bodies shall be many,
     cast out in every place. Be silent!”
Hear this, you that trample on the needy,
     and bring to ruin the poor of the land,
saying, “When will the new moon be over
     so that we may sell grain;
and the sabbath,
     so that we may offer wheat for sale?
We will make the ephah small and the shekel great,
     and practice deceit with false balances,
buying the poor for silver
     and the needy for a pair of sandals,
     and selling the sweepings of the wheat.”

On that day I will raise up
     the booth of David that is fallen,
and repair its breaches,
     and raise up its ruins,
     and rebuild it as in the days of old;
in order that they may possess the remnant of Edom
     and all the nations who are called by my name,
     says the Lord who does this.
The time is surely coming, says the Lord,
     when the one who plows shall overtake the one who reaps,
     and the treader of grapes the one who sows the seed;
the mountains shall drip sweet wine,
     and all the hills shall flow with it.
I will restore the fortunes of my people Israel,
     and they shall rebuild the ruined cities and inhabit them;
they shall plant vineyards and drink their wine,
     and they shall make gardens and eat their fruit.
I will plant them upon their land,
     and they shall never again be plucked up
     out of the land that I have given them,
says the Lord your God.
Rev. Rob Ater, associate pastor at Immanuel Presbyterian Church in Milwaukee, lifts up the message "A Basket of Summer Fruit?" based on the prophet Amos. Rev. Ater links Amos' message of addressing inequity and injustice in his time to the words of people crying out today. A recent delegate to the PC(USA) General Assembly, Rob participated in the Poor People's Campaign and the virtual Moral March on Washington. "We do know in this time and place is that we could all use a little justice and righteousness, some of that ever-flowing stream to cool us off and cool us down, to comfort and console us...One of the things that Amos and the Poor People’s Campaign has helped me to learn and to realize in a much more profound way, is that I can’t rest in those cool waters for too long, because those who are already vulnerable due to their socio-economic background or the color of their skin, are being made that much more vulnerable during this time."
Prayers of the People
Holy One, you have made us and claimed us through Christ to be your kin-dom and messengers, serving you and bringing forth your reign of justice and peace each day through our choices and actions.
Help us to be wounded healers who bring your peace into the world. As you sent Christ now send us.
We pray for the church around the world in all its local expressions, that we and our leaders may truly be your kin-dom, serving not ourselves but your glory. As you sent Christ now send us.
We pray for religious and secular authorities who speak truth to power. As you sent Christ now send us.
We pray for those who need healing and hope, who cannot see the possibility of a new life. As you sent Christ now send us.
We pray for those in our world who are wounded, who suffer from war, poverty and inequity, racism, sexism, oppression, and diseases of the body or mind. As you sent Christ now send us.
God who claims that your justice will coming rolling down like a mighty river, let your Spirit flow in and through us as bearers of justice, enactors of righteousness, and repairers for true peace. May our lives bear witness to your good Word sown in us that we may bear good fruit and our faith might continue to ripen until that day when your full glory reigns on the earth. In Christ, your faithful witness and our Lord, we pray.
The Lord's Prayer
Hymn O Day of Peace that Dimly Shines
Charge and Benediction
COnsider this day the ways in which you are falsely consoled and uncomfortably full.
Consider today how casual attitudes turn us aside from sighs too deep for words.
Consider this day the kingdom and the strange blessing it promises.

And may you be like trees planted by water who yield your fruit in its season.
May the Spirit's love,
flowing like water across the face of the earth,
fill you with every gift for the good of the world.
And the blessing of God, Eternal Source, Fountain of Life, and Giver of Gifts,
be with you always. Amen.

The liturgy for this service was put together by Rob Ater, and Ann Gibbs with resources from Michelle Henrichs (Prayer of Illumination). The prayers of the people is adapted from from the Second Sunday of Easter, Feasting on the Word, Liturgies for Year C, volume 1. The Charge and Benediction is from Feasting on the Word, Liturgies for Year C, volume 1.