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Collect for the second Sunday in Advent

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Posted by Ros Clarke, 10 Dec 2017

Read, mark, learn and inwardly digest!

Collect for the second Sunday in Advent (BCP):
Blessed Lord,
who hast caused all holy Scriptures to be written for our learning:
Grant that we may in such wise hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them,
that by patience and comfort of thy holy Word,
we may embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of everlasting life,
which thou hast given us in our Saviour Jesus Christ.

This week’s collect focusses on the Bible, God’s word written for ‘our learning’. You can almost hear Cranmer’s exasperation: God bothered to write this huge great book for you, the least you can do is read it! But not only read it, ‘read, mark, learn and inwardly digest’. The word skimmed over, the word forgotten, the word not taken to heart and applied, is as useless to us as the word not read at all.

But - and here is the advent part - Cranmer gives us the motivation to read and apply the scriptures: that ‘we may embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of everlasting life’. It is in reading God’s word that we gain the comfort, i.e. encouragement, which helps to hold onto the hope that we have of eternal life.

This week, take time to read God’s word, and not only to read, but to read, mark, learn and inwardly digest it, holding on to the hope of eternal life in Christ.

Ros Clarke is Associate Director of Church Society

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