Wednesday, April 5, 2023

Evening Prayer: Holy Wednesday, April 5, 2023

The livestream may be found here.


for Holy Wednesday


(Lutheran Book of Worship, p. 142)

The service of light is omitted during Holy Week.

The psalmody begins with this prayer for forgiveness and protection:

 Let my prayer rise before you as incense;

                the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.

O Lord, I call to you; come to me quickly;

                hear my voice when I cry to you.

Let my prayer rise before you as incense;

                the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.

Set a watch before my mouth, O Lord,

                and guard the door of my lips.

Let not my heart incline to any evil thing;

                let me not be occupied in wickedness with evildoers.

But my eyes are turned to you, Lord God;

                in you I take refuge. Strip me not of my life.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit;

as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be forever. 


Let my prayer rise before you as incense;

                the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.   Ps. 141:1-7


 Silence for meditation.

 Let the incense of our repentant prayer ascend before you, O Lord, and let your lovingkindness descend upon us, that with purified minds we may sing your praises with the Church on earth and the whole heavenly host, and may glorify you forever and ever.



Psalm 55    Exaudi, Deus

Distress of one betrayed by a friend

1 Hear my | prayer, O God;*

                do not hide yourself from | my petition.

2 Listen to me and | answer me;*

                I have no peace, because | of my cares.

3 I am shaken by the noise | of the enemy*

                and by the pressure | of the wicked;

4 for they have cast an evil | spell upon me*

                and are set against | me in fury.

5 My heart | quakes within me,*

                and the terrors of death have fall- | en upon me.

6 Fear and trembling have come | over me,*

                and horror | overwhelms me.

7 And I said, "Oh, that I had wings | like a dove!*

                I would fly away and | be at rest.

8 I would flee to a | far-off place*

                and make my lodging | in the wilderness.

9 I would hasten | to escape*

                from the stormy | wind and tempest."

10 Swallow them up, O Lord; con- | found their speech;*

                for I have seen violence and strife | in the city.

11 Day and night the watchmen make their rounds up- | on her walls,*

                but trouble and misery are in the | midst of her.

12 There is corruption | at her heart;*

                her streets are never free of oppression | and deceit.

13 For had it been an adversary who taunted me, then I | could have borne it;*

                or had it been an enemy who vaunted himself against me,

                then I could have | hidden from him.

14 But it was you, a man after | my own heart,*

                my companion, my own fa- | miliar friend.

15 We took sweet coun- | sel together,*

                and walked with the throng in the | house of God.

16 Let death come upon them suddenly; let them go down alive in- | to the grave;*

                for wickedness is in their dwellings, in their | very midst.

17 But I will call | upon God,*

                and the Lord will de- | liver me.

18 In the evening, in the morning, and at noonday, I will complain | and lament,*

                and he will | hear my voice.

19 He will bring me safely back from the battle | waged against me;*

                for there are man- | y who fight me.

20 God, who is enthroned of old, will hear me and | bring them down;*

                they never change; they do | not fear God.

21 My companion stretched forth his hand a- | gainst his comrade;*

                he has brok- | en his covenant.

22 His speech is soft- | er than butter,*

                but war is | in his heart.

23 His words are smooth- | er than oil,*

                but they | are drawn swords.

24 Cast your burden upon the Lord, and he | will sustain you;*

                he will never let the | righteous stumble.

25 For you will bring the bloodthirsty | and deceitful*

                down to the pit of destruc- | tion, O God.

26 They shall not live out | half their days,*

                but I will put my | trust in you.


Silence for meditation.

Lord Jesus, you were rejected by the leaders of the people, betrayed by the kiss of a friend, and deserted by your disciples. In our trouble, give us the confidence that you had in the Father and the assurance of our salvation now and forever.  Amen

HYMN    A Lamb Goes Uncomplaining Forth    LBW 105

1      A lamb goes uncomplaining forth

        to save a world of sinners.

        He bears the burden all alone,

        dies shorn of all his honors.

        He goes to slaughter, weak and faint,

        is led to die without complaint;

        his spotless life he offers.

        He bears the shame, the stripes, the wrath;

        his anguish, mockery, and death

        for us he gladly suffers.


2      This lamb is Christ, our greatest friend,

        the Lamb of God, our Savior,

        the one, his only Son, God sent

        to win us rebels over.

        “Go down, my child,” the Father said,

        “and free my children from their dread

        of death and condemnation.

        The painful stripes are hard to bear,

        but by your death they all can share

        the joy of your salvation.”


3      He answered from his tender heart

        that he would take the burden:

        “My Father’s will is my command;

        I’ll do as I am bidden.”

        Oh, wondrous love! Oh, loving might!

        To right what mortals cannot right

        God sent his Son from heaven.

        What love, O Love, who came to save

        by loving even to the grave

        until the stone was riven.


4      Of death I am no more afraid;

        his dying is my living.

        He clothes me in his royal robes

        that he is always giving.

        His love is dress enough for me

        to wear through all eternity

        before the highest Father,

        where we shall stand at Jesus’ side,

        his church, the well-appointed bride,

        when all the faithful gather.


John 12:27-36


In many and various ways

God spoke to this people of old by the prophets.

  But now in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son.




My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord;

                my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,

                for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant.

                From this day all generations will call me blessed.

                                The Almighty has done great things for me,

                                and holy is his name.

                                He has mercy on those who fear him

                                in every generation.

                He has shown the strength of his arm;

                he has scattered the proud in their conceit.

                He has cast down the mighty from their thrones,

                and has lifted up the lowly.

                He has filled the hungry with good things,

                and the rich he has sent away empty.

                He has come to the help of his servant Israel,

                for he has remembered his promise of mercy,

                the promise he made to our fathers,

                to Abraham and his children forever.

                Glory to the Father, and to the Son,

and to the Holy Spirit;

as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be forever. Amen


The suffrages are said:

Holy God, holy and mighty, holy and immortal,

  have mercy on us.

Our Father, who art in heaven,

                        hallowed be thy name,

                        thy kingdom come,

                        thy will be done,

                                    on earth as it is in heaven.

            Give us this day our daily bread;

            and forgive us our trespasses,

                        as we forgive those who trespass against us;

            and lead us not into temptation,

                        but deliver us from evil.

            For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory,

                        forever and ever. Amen


 Turn away, O Lord, the fierceness of your wrath,

and in pity spare your people;

  And have mercy.

Grant a favorable and speedy answer to the prayers of all;

  And have mercy.

Look, O Christ, upon our groanings, 

loose the bands of death, and grant us life;

  And have mercy.

Behold our tears, consider our sighs,

and now at length in pity forgive our sins,

  And have mercy.

Though none of us be worthy to be heard,

yet, O Christ, for your own self help us;

  And have mercy.

We cry to you, O Lord, have mercy upon us;

  And grant forgiveness.

O King of heaven, everlasting Lord,

receive the prayers which we pour forth;

  And grant forgiveness.

Visit the sick, bring forth the captive,

help the widow and the orphan;

  And grant forgiveness.

We have sinned and have departed from you,

Redeemer of all, save us;

  And grant forgiveness.

Have mercy on the penitent, and wash away the stains of sin;

  And grant forgiveness.

Let us all with one voice cry:

  Lord, have mercy.

Show us your mercy, O God, grant pardon, grant remission;

  And graciously have mercy.

The prayer for Holy Wednesday

Prayer for our intentions

O Lord, deal not with us according to our sins,

nor reward us according to our wickedness.

We give thanks to you, heavenly Father...let your angels have charge over us, that the wicked one have no power over us. Amen

Enter not into judgment with your servants;

  For in your sight no one living will be justified.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the living God...forever and ever.


Let us bless the Lord.

  Thanks be to God.


The almighty and merciful Lord, the Father, + the Son, and the Holy Spirit, 

bless and preserve us.