Pray First

“I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all people.” (1 Timothy 2:1-6)

The Kingdom, the Power, and the Glory
The American Edition of the “Grey Book” (1933)

22. LITANY FOR OUR COUNTRY

V. O God the Father, who governest the nations upon earth,
R. Be merciful unto us. 
V. O Christ, the light of nations and the glory of thy people,
R. Be merciful unto us. 
V. O Holy Spirit of unity and concord,
R. Be merciful unto us. 
V. O Triune God of grace,
R. Receive our prayer. 

V. Remember not, Lord, the offenses of thy people, our manifold transgressions and our mighty sins; deal not with us after our sins, neither reward us according to our wickedness.

R. Spare us, Father of mercies. 

V. From blindness of heart, from love of ease, from contentment with the second best, from failure to do the good that was in the heart of our fathers and for which they prepared the way.

R. Save thy people, Lord. 

V. From presumptuous sins, from pride of possession, from vainglorious boastings, from national hypocrisies,

R. Save thy people, Lord. 

V. From the covetousness which is idolatry. from hard bargaining and ruthless competition, and from all the service of mammon and the worship of wealth,

R. Save thy people, Lord. 

V. From class warfare and class hatred, from racial antagonisms, from the spirit of party, from the seeking of sectional advantage and forgetfulness of the general good,

R. Save thy people, Lord. 

V. From neglect of the unemployed and of the aged, from indifference to strangers and immigrants and outcasts, from cruelty to prisoners, and from all other unbrotherliness,

R. Save thy people, Lord. 

V. From failure to take account of the needs of other nations, from living unto ourselves alone, and from putting our trust in our own strength when our trust should be in thee,

R. Save thy people, Lord. 

V. From noisy restlessness, from unbelief and profaneness, from forsaking thee, the fountain of living waters, and hewing ourselves out broken cisterns that can hold no water,

R. Save thy people, Lord. 

V. Hear thou in heaven, thy dwelling-place;
R. And when thou hearest, forgive. 

V. That we may hallow thy name, that we may seek first thy kingdom and thy righteousness; and that, as thou givest us to know thy will, so we may do it,

R. We beseech thee to hear us, good Lord. 

V. That nothing be done through strife or vainglory, but in lowliness of mind; and that we may look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others, in honor preferring one another,

R. We beseech thee to hear us, good Lord. 

V. That we may be mindful of the poor and the oppressed among us; that we may bring up the children of the nation in thy faith and fear; that we may welcome those who in good faith have come from other lands to seek our fellowship, and receive them in thy name,

R. We beseech thee to hear us, good Lord. 

V. That we make choice of just legislators and faithful counsellors, who gravely, soberly, and with a godly spirit, may enact always things just, and things wise, and things merciful,

R. We beseech thee to hear us, good Lord. 

V. That we may co-operate earnestly and effectively with other nations, and with them labor for the defense and maintenance of public right, for the abolition of war and the establishment of international law, and for whatever else may pertain to the general good,

R. We beseech thee to hear us, good Lord. 

V. In the name of our God we will set up our banners.
R. Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth. 

V. Except the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it;
R. Except the Lord keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain.

Let us pray

 ALMIGHTY GOD, who turnest the heart of the fathers to their children, and the heart of the children to their fathers; receive, we pray thee, our unfeigned thanks for the good land which thou hast given us. Forgive us our transgressions; cleanse us from all things that defile our national life, and grant that this people, which thou hast abundantly blessed, may keep thy commandments, walk in thy ways, and fear thee. Be gracious to our times, that by thy bounty both national quietness and Christian devotion may be duly maintained. Let thy work appear unto thy servants, and thy glory unto their children; and let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us, and establish thou the work of our hands upon us; yea, the work of our hands, establish thou it; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Ghost, be with us all evermore. Amen.

“Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human authority: whether to the emperor, as the supreme authority, or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right. For it is God’s will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish people. Live as free people, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as God’s slaves.Show proper respect to everyone, love the family of believers, fear God, honor the emperor.” (1 Peter 2:13-17)

Image: whitehouse.gov / wiki / creative commons

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