The Propers for today are found on Page 179-180, with the Collect first:
The Sunday after Ascension Day.
GOD, the King of glory, who hast exalted thine only Son Jesus Christ with great triumph unto thy kingdom in heaven; We beseech thee, leave us not comfortless; but send to us thine Holy Ghost to comfort us, and exalt us un-to the same place whither our Saviour Christ is gone before, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the same Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen.
The Collect for Ascension Day, found on Page 177, is also read due to the rubric:
The Collect for The Ascension Day.
RANT, we beseech thee, Almighty God, that like as we do believe thy only-begotten Son our Lord Jesus Christ to have ascended into the heavens; so we may also in heart and mind thither ascend, and with him continually dwell, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen.
¶ This Collect is to be said daily throughout the Octave.
This morning’s Epistle was written in the Fourth Chapter of the First Epistle of Saint Peter beginning at the Seventh Verse:
HE end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer. And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins. Use hospitality one to another without grudging. As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
Today’s Holy Gospel was written in the Fifteenth Chapter of the Gospel according to Saint John beginning at the Twenty-Sixth Verse:
HEN the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me: and ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with me from the beginning. These things have I spoken unto you, that ye should not be offended. They shall put you out of the synagogues: yea, the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth God service. And these things will they do unto you, because they have not known the Father, nor me. But these things have I told you, that when the time shall come, ye may remember that I told you of them.
Sermon – The end of all things is at hand
Today’s Gospel starts out, the end of all things is at hand. Whoa! Harold Camping said the world would end on 21 May 2011. Now we found out the end was at hand back around the year 90 or so when Peter was writing. What’s the story?
First, about the end:
Matthew Chapter 13:
Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away. But of that day and [that] hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father. Take ye heed, watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is.
So, if even Jesus does not know, how do we square that with the end of all things is at hand?
Consider this, for roughly 280,000 people 21 May 2011 was the end of their time here on earth. Any given day, about that many people are born and about that many die. If you are one of them, the end is at hand. And, for most of us it is pretty clear you do not know the hour.
So, while you are here, live the life God has asked and leave happy. We often think of God as just keeping us from doing things. Indeed, He often does. But, the things He wants us not to do are harmful for us in the end. Just like the person whose warning of, “The stove is hot,” is met with either a grateful “Thanks!” or a doubtful “It is?” which is followed by the loud, “AAAAAGGGGGGHHHHH!”
Be considerate of others and use the talent God gave you. Do not feel you are special, but rather that God gave you special talent that you should use. You are special to God, but that does not call for you to feel superior to others. Rather you should use the talent God gave you and be grateful for whatever privilege it gains you here on earth.
God asks that you do your best, if you do, with Jesus’ making up for the shortfall, you will be fine. Actually, accounted as perfect.