Saturday: Preparation for the Eighteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Revised Common Lectionary Proper 13
Roman Catholic Proper 18

Complementary Hebrew Scripture from the Writings: Ecclesiastes 1:1-11

The words of the Teacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem.

Vanity of vanities, says the Teacher,
 vanity of vanities!
 All is vanity.
What do people gain from all the toil
 at which they toil under the sun?
A generation goes, and a generation comes,
 but the earth remains forever.
The sun rises and the sun goes down,
 and hurries to the place where it rises.
The wind blows to the south,
 and goes around to the north;
round and round goes the wind,
 and on its circuits the wind returns.
All streams run to the sea,
 but the sea is not full;
to the place where the streams flow,
 there they continue to flow.
All things are wearisome;
 more than one can express;
the eye is not satisfied with seeing,
 or the ear filled with hearing.
What has been is what will be,
 and what has been done is what will be done;
 there is nothing new under the sun.
Is there a thing of which it is said,
 “See, this is new”?
 It has already been,
 in the ages before us.
The people of long ago are not remembered,
 nor will there be any remembrance
of people yet to come
 by those who come after them.

Semi-continuous Hebrew Scripture Lesson from The Twelve Prophets: Hosea 10:1-15

Israel is a luxuriant vine that yields its fruit. The more his fruit increased the more altars he built; as his country improved, he improved his pillars. Their heart is false; now they must bear their guilt. The Lord will break down their altars, and destroy their pillars.

For now they will say: “We have no king, for we do not fear the Lord, and a king–what could he do for us?” They utter mere words; with empty oaths they make covenants; so litigation springs up like poisonous weeds in the furrows of the field. The inhabitants of Samaria tremble for the calf of Beth-aven. Its people shall mourn for it, and its idolatrous priests shall wail over it, over its glory that has departed from it. The thing itself shall be carried to Assyria as tribute to the great king. Ephraim shall be put to shame, and Israel shall be ashamed of his idol.

Samaria's king shall perish like a chip on the face of the waters. The high places of Aven, the sin of Israel, shall be destroyed. Thorn and thistle shall grow up on their altars. They shall say to the mountains, Cover us, and to the hills, Fall on us.¹

Since the days of Gibeah you have sinned, O Israel; there they have continued. Shall not war overtake them in Gibeah? I will come against the wayward people to punish them; and nations shall be gathered against them when they are punished for their double iniquity.

Ephraim was a trained heifer that loved to thresh, and I spared her fair neck; but I will make Ephraim break the ground; Judah must plow; Jacob must harrow for himself. Sow for yourselves righteousness; reap steadfast love; break up your fallow ground; for it is time to seek the Lord, that he may come and rain righteousness upon you.

You have plowed wickedness, you have reaped injustice, you have eaten the fruit of lies. Because you have trusted in your power and in the multitude of your warriors, therefore the tumult of war shall rise against your people, and all your fortresses shall be destroyed, as Shalman destroyed Beth-arbel on the day of battle when mothers were dashed in pieces with their children. Thus it shall be done to you, O Bethel, because of your great wickedness. At dawn the king of Israel shall be utterly cut off.

¹Jesus quotes this verse as he is walking to his crucifixion (Luke 23:26-30) and in Revelation 6:12-17 when the sixth seal if broken, the people hidden in caves call on the mountain and hills to cover them.

Complementary Psalm 49:1-12

Hear this, all you peoples;
give ear, all inhabitants of the world,
 both low and high, rich and poor together.
My mouth shall speak wisdom;
 the meditation of my heart shall be understanding.
I will incline my ear to a proverb;
 I will solve my riddle to the music of the harp.

Why should I fear in times of trouble,
 when the iniquity of my persecutors surrounds me,
those who trust in their wealth
 and boast of the abundance of their riches?
Truly, no ransom avails for one's life,
 there is no price one can give to God for it.
For the ransom of life is costly,
 and can never suffice
that one should live on forever
 and never see the grave.

When we look at the wise, they die;
 fool and dolt perish together
 and leave their wealth to others.
Their graves are their homes forever,
 their dwelling places to all generations,
 though they named lands their own.
Mortals cannot abide in their pomp;
 they are like the animals that perish.

Semi-continuous Psalm 107:1-9, 43

O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
 for his steadfast love endures forever.
Let the redeemed of the Lord say so,
 those he redeemed from trouble
and gathered in from the lands,
 from the east and from the west,
 from the north and from the south.

Some wandered in desert wastes,
 finding no way to an inhabited town;
hungry and thirsty,
 their soul fainted within them.

Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble,
 and he delivered them from their distress;
he led them by a straight way,
 until they reached an inhabited town.
Let them thank the Lord for his steadfast love,
 for his wonderful works to humankind.
For he satisfies the thirsty,
 and the hungry he fills with good things.

Let those who are wise give heed to these things,
 and consider the steadfast love of the Lord.

New Testament Gospel Lesson: Mark 10:17-22

Christ-Rich-Man.jpg

There are parallel passages at Matthew 19:16-30 and Luke 18:18-30.

As he was setting out on a journey, a man ran up and knelt before him, and asked him, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone. You know the commandments: ‘You shall not murder; You shall not commit adultery; You shall not steal; You shall not bear false witness; You shall not defraud; Honor your father and mother.¹’” He said to him, “Teacher, I have kept all these since my youth.” Jesus, looking at him, loved him and said, “You lack one thing; go, sell what you own, and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.” When he heard this, he was shocked and went away grieving, for he had many possessions.

¹Exodus 20:12-16 and Deuteronomy 5:16-20

Year C Ordinary 18, RCL Proper 13, Catholic Proper 18 Saturday

Selections are from Revised Common Lectionary Daily Readings copyright © 1995 by the Consultation on Common Texts.

Unless otherwise indicated, Bible text is from New Revised Standard Version Bible (NRSV) 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 rights reserved.

Image Credit: If You Want to Be Perfect (Christ and the Rich Young Man) By Andrey Mironov, via Wikimedia Commons, Used under Creative Commons Share Alike License 4.0.

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