King Ahaz

Saturday: Preparation for the Twenty-seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time

Roman Catholic Proper 27
Revised Common Lectionary Proper 22

Complementary Hebrew Scripture Lesson from the Latter Prophets: Isaiah 7:1-9

In the days of Ahaz son of Jotham son of Uzziah, king of Judah, King Rezin of Aram and King Pekah son of Remaliah of Israel went up to attack Jerusalem, but could not mount an attack against it. When the house of David heard that Aram had allied itself with Ephraim¹ the heart of Ahaz and the heart of his people shook as the trees of the forest shake before the wind.

Then the Lord said to Isaiah, Go out to meet Ahaz, you and your son Shear-jashub, at the end of the conduit of the upper pool on the highway to the Fuller's Field, and say to him, Take heed, be quiet, do not fear, and do not let your heart be faint because of these two smoldering stumps of firebrands, because of the fierce anger of Rezin and Aram and the son of Remaliah. Because Aram—with Ephraim and the son of Remaliah—has plotted evil against you, saying, Let us go up against Judah and cut off Jerusalem and conquer it for ourselves and make the son of Tabeel king in it; therefore thus says the Lord God:

It shall not stand,
and it shall not come to pass.
For the head of Aram is Damascus,
and the head of Damascus is Rezin.
(Within sixty-five years Ephraim will be shattered, no longer a people.)
The head of Ephraim is Samaria,
and the head of Samaria is the son of Remaliah.
If you do not stand firm in faith,
you shall not stand at all.

¹ Ephraim is often used in Isaiah and Amos to refer to the entire northern kingdom of Israel.

Semi-continuous Hebrew Scripture Lesson from the Writings: Lamentations 1:7-15

Jerusalem remembers,
 in the days of her affliction and wandering,
all the precious things
 that were hers in days of old.
When her people fell into the hand of the foe,
 and there was no one to help her,
the foe looked on mocking
 over her downfall.

Jerusalem sinned grievously,
 so she has become a mockery;
all who honored her despise her,
 for they have seen her nakedness;
she herself groans,
 and turns her face away.
Her uncleanness was in her skirts;
 she took no thought of her future;
her downfall was appalling,
 with none to comfort her.

“O Lord, look at my affliction,
 for the enemy has triumphed!”
Enemies have stretched out their hands
 over all her precious things;
she has even seen the nations
 invade her sanctuary,
those whom you forbade
 to enter your congregation.

All her people groan
 as they search for bread;
they trade their treasures for food
 to revive their strength.

Look, O Lord, and see
 how worthless I have become.

Is it nothing to you, all you who pass by?
 Look and see
if there is any sorrow like my sorrow,
 which was brought upon me,
which the Lord inflicted
 on the day of his fierce anger.
From on high he sent fire;
 it went deep into my bones;
he spread a net for my feet;
 he turned me back;
he has left me stunned,
 faint all day long.

My transgressions were bound into a yoke;
 by his hand they were fastened together;
they weigh on my neck,
 sapping my strength;
the Lord handed me over
 to those whom I cannot withstand.

The Lord has rejected
 all my warriors in the midst of me;
he proclaimed a time against me
 to crush my young men;
the Lord has trodden as in a wine press
 the virgin daughter Judah.

Complementary Psalm 37:1-9

Do not fret because of the wicked;
 do not be envious of wrongdoers,
for they will soon fade like the grass,
 and wither like the green herb.

Trust in the Lord, and do good;
 so you will live in the land, and enjoy security.
Take delight in the Lord,
 and he will give you the desires of your heart.

Commit your way to the Lord;
 trust in him, and he will act.
He will make your vindication shine like the light,
 and the justice of your cause like the noonday.

Be still before the Lord, and wait patiently for him;
 do not fret over those who prosper in their way,
 over those who carry out evil devices.

Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath.
 Do not fret—it leads only to evil.
For the wicked shall be cut off,
 but those who wait for the Lord shall inherit the land.

Semi-continuous Canticle from The Writings: Lamentations 3:19-26

The thought of my affliction and my homelessness
 is wormwood and gall!
My soul continually thinks of it
 and is bowed down within me.
But this I call to mind,
 and therefore I have hope:

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases,
 his mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning;
 great is your faithfulness.
“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul.
 “therefore I will hope in him.”

The Lord is good to those who wait for him,
 to the soul that seeks him.
It is good that one should wait quietly
 for the salvation of the Lord.

New Testament Gospel Lesson: Matthew 20:29-34

There are parallel passages at Mark 10:46-52 and Luke 18:35-43.

Healing of blind and lame

As they were leaving Jericho, a large crowd followed him. There were two blind men sitting by the roadside. When they heard that Jesus was passing by, they shouted, “Lord, have mercy on us, Son of David!” The crowd sternly ordered them to be quiet; but they shouted even more loudly, “Have mercy on us, Lord, Son of David!” Jesus stood still and called them, saying, “What do you want me to do for you?” They said to him, “Lord, let our eyes be opened.” Moved with compassion, Jesus touched their eyes. Immediately they regained their sight and followed him.

Year C Ordinary 27, Catholic Proper 27, RCL Proper 22: 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: Healing of blind and lame by Andreas König, 1759 (Matthew 15), photo by Andreas Praefcke (Own photo) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons. This image was modified by Mike Gilbertson to flatten it from an arch.

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