Hebrew Scripture: Proverbs 25:11-22
A word fitly spoken
is like apples of gold in a setting of silver.
Like a gold ring or an ornament of gold
is a wise rebuke to a listening ear.
Like the cold of snow in the time of harvest
are faithful messengers to those who send them;
they refresh the spirit of their masters.
Like clouds and wind without rain
is one who boasts of a gift never given.
With patience a ruler may be persuaded,
and a soft tongue can break bones.
If you have found honey, eat only enough for you,
or else, having too much, you will vomit it.
Let your foot be seldom in your neighbor's house,
otherwise the neighbor will become weary of you and hate you.
Like a war club, a sword, or a sharp arrow
is one who bears false witness against a neighbor.
Like a bad tooth or a lame foot
is trust in a faithless person in time of trouble.
Like vinegar on a wound
is one who sings songs to a heavy heart.
Like a moth in clothing or a worm in wood,
sorrow gnaws at the human heart.
If your enemies are hungry, give them bread to eat;
and if they are thirsty, give them water to drink;
for you will heap coals of fire on their heads,
and the Lord will reward you.
The Lord is my portion;
I promise to keep your words.
I implore your favor with all my heart;
be gracious to me according to your promise.
When I think of your ways,
I turn my feet to your decrees;
I hurry and do not delay
to keep your commandments.
Though the cords of the wicked ensnare me,
I do not forget your law.
At midnight I rise to praise you,
because of your righteous ordinances.
I am a companion of all who fear you,
of those who keep your precepts.
The earth, O Lord, is full of your steadfast love;
teach me your statutes.
New Testament Epistle Lesson: Romans 12:9-21
Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; love one another with mutual affection; outdo one another in showing honor. Do not lag in zeal, be ardent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering, persevere in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints; extend hospitality to strangers. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with one another; do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly; do not claim to be wiser than you are. Do not repay anyone evil for evil, but take thought for what is noble in the sight of all. If it is possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave room for the wrath of God; for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” No, “if your enemies are hungry, feed them; if they are thirsty, give them something to drink; for by doing this you will heap burning coals on their heads.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
The first quotation is from Deuteronomy 32:35. The second is from Proverbs 25:21-22 (the first reading).
Bible verses from The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All right reserved.
Selections from Revised Common Lectionary Daily Readings, copyright 1985 by the Consultation on Common Texts.
Image Credit: Romans 12:12 created on Canva by The Lectionary Company. This image may be reused under the Creative Commons 2.5 Share Alike License.