Wednesday: Reflection on the Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Revised Common Lectionary Proper 7
Roman Catholic Proper 12

Jeremiah

Complementary Hebrew Scripture: Jeremiah 38:1-13

Now Shephatiah son of Mattan, Gedaliah son of Pashhur, Jucal son of Shelemiah, and Pashhur son of Malchiah heard the words that Jeremiah was saying to all the people, Thus says the LORD, Those who stay in this city shall die by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence; but those who go out to the Chaldeans shall live; they shall have their lives as a prize of war, and live. Thus says the LORD, This city shall surely be handed over to the army of the king of Babylon and be taken. Then the officials said to the king, “This man ought to be put to death, because he is discouraging the soldiers who are left in this city, and all the people, by speaking such words to them. For this man is not seeking the welfare of this people, but their harm.” King Zedekiah said, “Here he is; he is in your hands; for the king is powerless against you.” So they took Jeremiah and threw him into the cistern of Malchiah, the king's son, which was in the court of the guard, letting Jeremiah down by ropes. Now there was no water in the cistern, but only mud, and Jeremiah sank in the mud.

Ebed-melech the Ethiopian, a eunuch in the king's house, heard that they had put Jeremiah into the cistern. The king happened to be sitting at the Benjamin Gate, so Ebed-melech left the king's house and spoke to the king, “My lord king, these men have acted wickedly in all they did to the prophet Jeremiah by throwing him into the cistern to die there of hunger, for there is no bread left in the city.” Then the king commanded Ebed-melech the Ethiopian, “Take three men with you from here, and pull the prophet Jeremiah up from the cistern before he dies.” So Ebed-melech took the men with him and went to the house of the king, to a wardrobe of the storehouse, and took from there old rags and worn-out clothes, which he let down to Jeremiah in the cistern by ropes. Then Ebed-melech the Ethiopian said to Jeremiah, “Just put the rags and clothes between your armpits and the ropes.” Jeremiah did so. Then they drew Jeremiah up by the ropes and pulled him out of the cistern. And Jeremiah remained in the court of the guard.

Semi-continuous Hebrew Scripture: Jeremiah 42:18-22

[Jeremiah 42:8 Then Jeremiah summoned … all the people from the least to the greatest, and said to them,]

“For thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: Just as my anger and my wrath were poured out on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so my wrath will be poured out on you when you go to Egypt. You shall become an object of execration and horror, of cursing and ridicule. You shall see this place no more. The LORD has said to you, O remnant of Judah, Do not go to Egypt. Be well aware that I have warned you today that you have made a fatal mistake. For you yourselves sent me to the LORD your God, saying, ‘Pray for us to the LORD our God, and whatever the LORD our God says, tell us and we will do it.’ So I have told you today, but you have not obeyed the voice of the LORD your God in anything that he sent me to tell you. Be well aware, then, that you shall die by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence in the place where you desire to go and settle.”

Complementary Psalm 6

O Lord, do not rebuke me in your anger,
 or discipline me in your wrath.
Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am languishing;
 O Lord, heal me,
 for my bones are shaking with terror.
My soul also is struck with terror,
 while you, O Lord—how long?

Turn, O Lord, save my life;
 deliver me for the sake of your steadfast love.
For in death there is no remembrance of you;
 in Sheol who can give you praise?

I am weary with my moaning;
 every night I flood my bed with tears;
 I drench my couch with my weeping.
My eyes waste away because of grief;
 they grow weak because of all my foes.

Depart from me, all you workers of evil,
 for the Lord has heard the sound of my weeping.
The Lord has heard my supplication;
 the Lord accepts my prayer.
All my enemies shall be ashamed
 and struck with terror;
 they shall turn back,
 and in a moment be put to shame.

Semi-continuous Psalm 86:11-17

Teach me your way, O Lord,
 that I may walk in your truth;
 give me an undivided heart to revere your name.
I give thanks to you, O Lord my God,
 with my whole heart,
 and I will glorify your name forever.
For great is your steadfast love toward me;
 you have delivered my soul
 from the depths of Sheol.

O God, the insolent rise up against me;
 a band of ruffians seeks my life,
 and they do not set you before them.
But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious,
 slow to anger
 and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.
Turn to me and be gracious to me;
 give your strength to your servant;
 save the child of your serving girl.
Show me a sign of your favor,
 so that those who hate me may see it
 and be put to shame,
 because you, Lord, have helped me
 and comforted me.

New Testament Gospel Lesson: Matthew 10:5-23

These twelve Jesus sent out with the following instructions: “Go nowhere among the Gentiles, and enter no town of the Samaritans, but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. As you go, proclaim the good news, 'The kingdom of heaven has come near.' Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons. You received without payment; give without payment. Take no gold, or silver, or copper in your belts, no bag for your journey, or two tunics, or sandals, or a staff; for laborers deserve their food. Whatever town or village you enter, find out who in it is worthy, and stay there until you leave. As you enter the house, greet it. If the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it; but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet as you leave that house or town. Truly I tell you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment than for that town.

“See, I am sending you out like sheep into the midst of wolves; so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves. Beware of them, for they will hand you over to councils and flog you in their synagogues; and you will be dragged before governors and kings because of me, as a testimony to them and the Gentiles. When they hand you over, do not worry about how you are to speak or what you are to say; for what you are to say will be given to you at that time; for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you. Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child, and children will rise against parents and have them put to death; and you will be hated by all because of my name. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. When they persecute you in one town, flee to the next; for truly I tell you, you will not have gone through all the towns of Israel before the Son of Man comes.”

Year A Ordinary 12, RCL Proper 7, Catholic Proper 12 Wednesday

 

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: Jeremiah (detail from a fresco in the Sistine Chapel) by Michelangelo, via Wikimedia Commons. This is a public domain image.

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