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Sunday 24th March 

1Corinthians 10:1-13 Paul reminds the Corinthian Christians of events in the story of the Exodus, linking them to Christian baptism and the eucharist. Putting God to the test will lead to disaster but trusting in him will give strength in times when faith is tested. 

I do not want you to be unaware, brothers and sisters, that our ancestors were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, and all ate the same spiritual food, and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank from the spiritual rock that followed them, and the rock was Christ. Nevertheless, God was not pleased with most of them, and they were struck down in the wilderness.

 Now these things occurred as examples for us, so that we might not desire evil as they did. Do not become idolaters as some of them did; as it is written, ‘The people sat down to eat and drink, and they rose up to play.’ We must not indulge in sexual immorality as some of them did, and twenty-three thousand fell in a single day. We must not put Christ to the test, as some of them did, and were destroyed by serpents. And do not complain as some of them did, and were destroyed by the destroyer. These things happened to them to serve as an example, and they were written down to instruct us, on whom the ends of the ages have come. So if you think you are standing, watch out that you do not fall. No testing has overtaken you that is not common to everyone. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tested beyond your strength, but with the testing he will also provide the way out so that you may be able to endure it.    

Luke 13:1-9

At that very time there were some present who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. He asked them, ‘Do you think that because these Galileans suffered in this way they were worse sinners than all other Galileans? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish as they did. Or those eighteen who were killed when the tower of Siloam fell on them - do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others living in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish just as they did.’

 Then he told this parable: ‘A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard; and he came looking for fruit on it and found none. So he said to the gardener, “See here! For three years I have come looking for fruit on this fig tree, and still I find none. Cut it down! Why should it be wasting the soil?” He replied, “Sir, let it alone for one more year, until I dig round it and put manure on it. If it bears fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down.” ’

Next Sunday’s  (31st Mar.) Readings

1Samuel 1:20-28

Luke 2:33-35

Collect

Eternal God,

give us insight to discern your will for us,

to give up what harms us, and to seek the perfection we are promised

in Jesus Christ our Lord.

The Prayer after Communion:

Merciful Lord, grant your people grace

to withstand the temptations of the world, the flesh and the devil,

and with pure hearts and minds to follow you, the only God;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.  

Please remember in your prayers this week:

Members of our congregations unable to attend today.

Those who are sick or suffering, especially Rutha Titterton.

The recently bereaved, especially the family and friends of Mavis Wilson, Douglas Stanley, Paul Kirtley, Gladys Hardy and Anthony Hall.

The friends and relatives of the dead, and those wounded in the attack on the mosques in New Zealand, especially Elin Daraghmeh Alsati, aged 4.

The people devastated by the African typhoon.


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