Wednesday: Reflection on the Twenty-first Sunday in Ordinary Time

Wednesday: Reflection on the Twenty-first Sunday in Ordinary Time

Revised Common Lectionary Proper 16
Roman Catholic Proper 21

Complementary Hebrew Scripture: Isaiah 28:14-22

Therefore hear the word of the Lord, you scoffers who rule this people in Jerusalem.
Because you have said, “We have made a covenant with death,
 and with Sheol we have an agreement;
 when the overwhelming scourge passes through
 it will not come to us;
 for we have made lies our refuge,
 and in falsehood we have taken shelter”;
therefore thus says the Lord GOD,
 See, I am laying in Zion a foundation stone,
 a tested stone, a precious cornerstone,
 a sure foundation:
 “One who trusts will not panic.”
And I will make justice the line,
 and righteousness the plummet;
 hail will sweep away the refuge of lies,
 and waters will overwhelm the shelter.
Then your covenant with death will be annulled,
 and your agreement with Sheol will not stand;
 when the overwhelming scourge passes
 through you will be beaten down by it.
As often as it passes through, it will take you;
 for morning by morning it will pass through,
 by day and by night;
 and it will be sheer terror to understand the message.
For the bed is too short to stretch oneself on it,
 and the covering too narrow to wrap oneself in it.
For the Lord will rise up as on Mount Perazim,
 he will rage as in the valley of Gibeon;
 to do his deed—strange is his deed!
 and to work his work—alien is his work!
Now therefore do not scoff, or your bonds will be made stronger;
 for I have heard a decree of destruction
 from the Lord GOD of hosts upon the whole land.

Semi-continuous Hebrew Scripture: Exodus 2:15b-22

But Moses fled from Pharaoh. He settled in the land of Midian, and sat down by a well. The priest of Midian had seven daughters. They came to draw water, and filled the troughs to water their father's flock. But some shepherds came and drove them away. Moses got up and came to their defense and watered their flock. When they returned to their father Reuel, he said, “How is it that you have come back so soon today?” They said, “An Egyptian helped us against the shepherds; he even drew water for us and watered the flock.” He said to his daughters, “Where is he? Why did you leave the man? Invite him to break bread.” Moses agreed to stay with the man, and he gave Moses his daughter Zipporah in marriage. She bore a son, and he named him Gershom; for he said, “I have been an alien residing in a foreign land.”

Complementary Psalm 18:1-3, 20-32

I love you, O Lord, my strength.
The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my deliverer,
 my God, my rock in whom I take refuge,
 my shield, and the horn of my salvation,
 my stronghold.
I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised,
 so I shall be saved from my enemies.

The Lord rewarded me according to my righteousness;
 according to the cleanness of my hands
 he recompensed me.
For I have kept the ways of the Lord,
 and have not wickedly departed from my God.
For all his ordinances were before me,
 and his statutes I did not put away from me.
I was blameless before him, and I kept myself from guilt.

Therefore the Lord has recompensed me according to my righteousness,
 according to the cleanness of my hands in his sight.
With the loyal you show yourself loyal;
 with the blameless you show yourself blameless;
 with the pure you show yourself pure;
 and with the crooked you show yourself perverse.
For you deliver a humble people,
 but the haughty eyes you bring down.
It is you who light my lamp;
 the Lord, my God, lights up my darkness.

By you I can crush a troop, and by my God I can leap over a wall.
This God—his way is perfect;
 the promise of the Lord proves true;
 he is a shield for all who take refuge in him.
For who is God except the Lord?
And who is a rock besides our God?—
the God who girded me with strength, and made my way safe.

Semi-continuous Psalm 8

O Lord, our Sovereign,
  how majestic is your name in all the earth!

You have set your glory above the heavens.

Out of the mouths of babes and infants
  you have founded a bulwark
  because of your foes,
  to silence the enemy and the avenger.

When I look at your heavens,
  the work of your fingers,
  the moon and the stars that you have established;
  what are human beings
  that you are mindful of them,
  mortals that you care for them?

Yet you have made them a little lower than God,
  and crowned them with glory and honor.

You have given them dominion over the works of your hands;
  you have put all things under their feet,
  all sheep and oxen, and also the beasts of the field,
  the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea,
  whatever passes along the paths of the seas.

O Lord, our Sovereign,
  how majestic is your name in all the earth!

New Testament Gospel Lesson: Matthew 26:6-13


Now while Jesus was at Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, a woman came to him with an alabaster jar of very costly ointment, and she poured it on his head as he sat at the table. But when the disciples saw it, they were angry and said, “Why this waste? For this ointment could have been sold for a large sum, and the money given to the poor.” But Jesus, aware of this, said to them, “Why do you trouble the woman? She has performed a good service for me. For you always have the poor with you, but you will not always have me. By pouring this ointment on my body she has prepared me for burial. Truly I tell you, wherever this good news is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will be told in remembrance of her.”

Year A Ordinary 21, RCL Proper 16, Catholic Proper 21 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: The Feast of Simon the Pharisee by Peter Paul Rubens via Wikimedia Commons. This is a public domain image.

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