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Proper 21A / 18th Sunday after Pentecost

You can find a YouTube playlist here with many of the songs suggested below.

In 2023 this Sunday occurs during Creation Time and suggestions for songs which can be used to complement or substitute for the lectionary based material can be found here.


The verses in Philippians which call on us to confess that Jesus is Lord links to many songs which would work well for gathering such as Son of God, eternal Saviour (CH 468), Spirit of truth and grace (CH 608), Jesus calls us here to meet him (CH 510), Come now is the time to worship (CH 196 / MP 1040), Lord, I lift your name on high (CH 558 / MP 881) and Blessed be Your name (MP 1036 / CCLI) which could also link to the Exodus passage through reference to both streams of abundance and walking through the wilderness.


People of the Lord (PFAS 78A / Scheer) is a fun setting of the psalm and the 7/8 time is much more natural to sing than you might imagine, although this only includes the first section of the psalm. Come listen, O my people (Grace) is a good option if you want to cover all the parts of the psalm that are in the lectionary as the first two verses focus on these. Note that the setting of this psalm in CH4 (#50) doesn’t cover the appropriate verses.

You could also consider using Open your ears, O faithful people / God has spoken to his people (PFAS 78C / MP 182 / GSW 25) from the Hasidic tradition as a song of approach/illumination before and/or after readings as it links well to the text of the psalm. There are various different versions of both the text and music.


The Gospel doesn’t have many songs which link directly to it but you could consider songs of discipleship such as Courage, brother! do not stumble (CH 513), Jesus Christ, our living Lord (CH 524), By faith (MP 1262 / CCLI / Getty) and Jesus, you have called us (Resound).

The Scottish Paraphrases include a setting of the passage from Philippians, Ye who the name of Jesus bear (CH 520), while At the name of Jesus (CH 458 / MP 41) takes vv.10-11 as its starting point and The Philippians Hymn (Gordon) and High in the heavens (Resound) are two contemporary songs which are both inspired by this passage. Word of the Father, the life of creation (CH 634) is another option for a classic hymn which explores the themes of the passage while Brother, sister, let me serve you (CH 694 / MP 1261) and Spirit of Jesus, if I love my neighbour (CH 621) could give more of a focus on what it practically means for how we live.

Thirsty, we wander (GIA), Praise the One who breaks the darkness (CH 348) and As the deer runs to the river (Hymnary) all make specific reference to the story in Exodus but you could also consider songs with a more general focus on the living waters such as I heard the voice of Jesus say (CH 540 / MP 275), Spirit of God, come dwell within me (CH 722), Come to the feast (GIA), All who are thirsty (MP 1025 / CCLI), O living water (OCP) and Living waters (CCLI / Getty).


There are some classic hymns which link strongly to the Old Testament and would work well as sending songs such as Guide me, O thou great Jehovah (CH 167 / MP 201) and Glorious things of thee are spoken (CH 738 / MP 173). You could also consider a similar theme to the gathering with songs which praise the name of Jesus such as At the name of Jesus (CH 458 / MP 41), All hail the power of jesus’ name (CH 457 / MP 13), Christ our hope in life and death (CCLI / Getty), All hail King Jesus (CCLI) and O praise the name (Anástasis) (CCLI).

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