prophet

Wednesday: Reflection on the Second Sunday in Advent

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Hebrew Scripture Lesson from The Latter Prophets: Isaiah 35:3-7

Strengthen the weak hands,
 and make firm the feeble knees.
¹
Say to those who are of a fearful heart,
 “Be strong, do not fear!
Here is your God.
He will come with vengeance,
 with terrible recompense.
He will come and save you.”

Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened,
 and the ears of the deaf unstopped;
then the lame shall leap like a deer,
 and the tongue of the speechless sing for joy.
For waters shall break forth in the wilderness,
 and streams in the desert;

the burning sand shall become a pool,
 and the thirsty ground springs of water;
the haunt of jackals shall become a swamp,
 the grass shall become reeds and rushes.

¹This passage is quoted in Hebrews 12:7-13concerning enduring the Lord's discipline.
²This passage is quoted in
Matthew 11:2-1-15and Luke 7:18-30, both concerning John the Baptist around the time he sent messengers to Jesus.

Psalm 126

When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion,
 we were like those who dream.
Then our mouth was filled with laughter,
 and our tongue with shouts of joy;
then it was said among the nations,
 “The Lord has done great things for them.”
The Lord has done great things for us,
 and we rejoiced.

Restore our fortunes, O Lord,
 like the watercourses in the Negeb.
May those who sow in tears
 reap with shouts of joy.
Those who go out weeping,
 bearing the seed for sowing,
shall come home with shouts of joy,
 carrying their sheaves.

New Testament Gospel Lesson: Luke 7:18-30

There is a parallel passage at Matthew 11:2-19.

John-disciples-meet-Jesus.gif

The disciples of John reported all these things to him. So John summoned two of his disciples and sent them to the Lord to ask, “Are you the one who is to come, or are we to wait for another?” When the men had come to him, they said, “John the Baptist has sent us to you to ask, ‘Are you the one who is to come, or are we to wait for another?’” Jesus had just then cured many people of diseases, plagues, and evil spirits, and had given sight to many who were blind. And he answered them, “Go and tell John what you have seen and heard: the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the poor have good news brought to them. And blessed is anyone who takes no offense at me.”

When John's messengers had gone, Jesus began to speak to the crowds about John: “What did you go out into the wilderness to look at? A reed shaken by the wind? What then did you go out to see? Someone dressed in soft robes? Look, those who put on fine clothing and live in luxury are in royal palaces. What then did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet. This is the one about whom it is written,

‘See, I am sending my messenger ahead of you,
 who will prepare your way before you.’¹

I tell you, among those born of women no one is greater than John; yet the least in the kingdom of God is greater than he.” (And all the people who heard this, including the tax collectors, acknowledged the justice of God, because they had been baptized with John's baptism. But by refusing to be baptized by him, the Pharisees and the lawyers rejected God's purpose for themselves.)

¹Malachai 3:1, which was our Sunday Hebrew Scripture.

Year C Advent 2 Wednesday

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

Unless otherwise indicated, Bible text is from Holy Bible New Revised Standard Version (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 right reserved.

Footnotes in the Hebrew Scriptures that show where the passage is used in the Christian Scriptures are based on information from the Complete Jewish Bible (Updated) (CJB) by David H. Stern, Copyright © 1998 and 2006 by David H. Stern, used by permission of Messianic Jewish Publishers, www.messianicjewish.net. All rights reserved worldwide. When text is taken from the CJB, the passage ends with (CJB) and the foregoing copyright notice applies.

Parallel passages are as indicated in the Modern English Version (MEV) , copyright © 2014 by Military Bible Association. Used by permission. All rights reserved. When text is taken from the MEV, the passage ends with (MEV) and the foregoing copyright notice applies.

Footnotes in the Christian Scriptures that show where a passage from the Hebrew Scripture is used are from The The Holy Bible: New International Version ® (NIV®), copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide. When text is taken from the NIV, the passage ends with (NIV) and the foregoing copyright notice applies.

Image credit: John's Disciples Meet Jesus by Jerome Nadal (1507-1580), via Catholic-resources.org.This is a public domain image.

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Wednesday: Reflection on the Thirty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time

This week's blog post is here. It has a review of the New International Version, summaries of the week's readings, a wish that the church could settle the meaning of justification, widows, and faith that moves mountains.

More information about the two complementary and semi-continuous series is here: Which Series?

Complementary Hebrew Scripture from the Writings: Ruth 4:7-22

Now this was the custom in former times in Israel concerning redeeming and exchanging: to confirm a transaction, the one took off a sandal and gave it to the other; this was the manner of attesting in Israel. So when the next-of-kin said to Boaz, “Acquire it for yourself,” he took off his sandal. Then Boaz said to the elders and all the people, “Today you are witnesses that I have acquired from the hand of Naomi all that belonged to Elimelech and all that belonged to Chilion and Mahlon. I have also acquired Ruth the Moabite, the wife of Mahlon, to be my wife, to maintain the dead man’s name on his inheritance, in order that the name of the dead may not be cut off from his kindred and from the gate of his native place; today you are witnesses.” Then all the people who were at the gate, along with the elders, said, “We are witnesses. May the Lord make the woman who is coming into your house like Rachel and Leah, who together built up the house of Israel. May you produce children in Ephrathah and bestow a name in Bethlehem; and, through the children that the Lord will give you by this young woman, may your house be like the house of Perez, whom Tamar bore to Judah.”

So Boaz took Ruth and she became his wife. When they came together, the Lord made her conceive, and she bore a son. Then the women said to Naomi, “Blessed be the Lord, who has not left you this day without next-of-kin; and may his name be renowned in Israel! He shall be to you a restorer of life and a nourisher of your old age; for your daughter-in-law who loves you, who is more to you than seven sons, has borne him.” Then Naomi took the child and laid him in her bosom, and became his nurse. The women of the neighborhood gave him a name, saying, “A son has been born to Naomi.” They named him Obed; he became the father of Jesse, the father of David.

Now these are the descendants of Perez: Perez became the father of Hezron, Hezron of Ram, Ram of Amminadab, Amminadab of Nahshon, Nahshon of Salmon, Salmon of Boaz, Boaz of Obed, Obed of Jesse, and Jesse of David.

Semi-continuous Hebrew Scripture from the Torah: Genesis 24:28-42

Then Rebekah ran and told her mother's household about these things.
The girl had a brother whose name was Laban; and Laban ran out to the man, to the spring. As soon as he had seen the nose-ring, and the bracelets on his sister's arms, and when he heard the words of his sister Rebekah, “Thus the man spoke to me,” he went to the man; and there he was, standing by the camels at the spring. He said, “Come in, O blessed of the Lord. Why do you stand outside when I have prepared the house and a place for the camels?” So the man came into the house; and Laban unloaded the camels, and gave him straw and fodder for the camels, and water to wash his feet and the feet of the men who were with him. Then food was set before him to eat; but he said, “I will not eat until I have told my errand.” He said, “Speak on.”

So he said, “I am Abraham's servant. The Lord has greatly blessed my master, and he has become wealthy; he has given him flocks and herds, silver and gold, male and female slaves, camels and donkeys. And Sarah my master's wife bore a son to my master when she was old; and he has given him all that he has. My master made me swear, saying, ‘You shall not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, in whose land I live; but you shall go to my father's house, to my kindred, and get a wife for my son.’ I said to my master, ‘Perhaps the woman will not follow me.’ But he said to me, ‘The Lord, before whom I walk, will send his angel with you and make your way successful. You shall get a wife for my son from my kindred, from my father's house. Then you will be free from my oath, when you come to my kindred; even if they will not give her to you, you will be free from my oath.’

“I came today to the spring, and said, ‘O Lord, the God of my master Abraham, if now you will only make successful the way I am going!’”

Complementary Psalm 94

O Lord, you God of vengeance,
 you God of vengeance, shine forth!
Rise up, O judge of the earth;
 give to the proud what they deserve!
O Lord, how long shall the wicked,
 how long shall the wicked exult?

They pour out their arrogant words;
 all the evildoers boast.
They crush your people, O Lord,
 and afflict your heritage.
They kill the widow and the stranger,
 they murder the orphan,
and they say, “The Lord does not see;
 the God of Jacob does not perceive.”

Understand, O dullest of the people;
 fools, when will you be wise?
He who planted the ear, does he not hear?
He who formed the eye, does he not see?
He who disciplines the nations,
he who teaches knowledge to humankind,
 does he not chastise?
The Lord knows our thoughts,
 that they are but an empty breath.

Happy are those whom you discipline, O Lord,
 and whom you teach out of your law,
giving them respite from days of trouble,
 until a pit is dug for the wicked.
For the Lord will not forsake his people;
 he will not abandon his heritage;
for justice will return to the righteous,
 and all the upright in heart will follow it.

Who rises up for me against the wicked?
 Who stands up for me against evildoers?
If the Lord had not been my help,
 my soul would soon have lived in the land of silence.
When I thought, “My foot is slipping,”
 your steadfast love, O Lord, held me up.
When the cares of my heart are many,
 your consolations cheer my soul.
Can wicked rulers be allied with you,
 those who contrive mischief by statute?
They band together against the life of the righteous,
 and condemn the innocent to death.
But the Lord has become my stronghold,
 and my God the rock of my refuge.
He will repay them for their iniquity
 and wipe them out for their wickedness;
 the Lord our God will wipe them out.

Semi-continuous Psalm 113

Praise the Lord!
Praise, O servants of the Lord;
 praise the name of the Lord.

Blessed be the name of the Lord
 from this time on and forevermore.
From the rising of the sun to its setting
 the name of the Lord is to be praised.
The Lord is high above all nations,
 and his glory above the heavens.

Who is like the Lord our God,
 who is seated on high,
who looks far down
 on the heavens and the earth?
He raises the poor from the dust,
 and lifts the needy from the ash heap,
to make them sit with princes,
 with the princes of his people.
He gives the barren woman a home,
 making her the joyous mother of children.
Praise the Lord!

New Testament Gospel Lesson: Luke 4:16-30

There are parallel passages at Matthew 13:53-58 and Mark 6:1-6.

Bible Illustration of the Gospel of Luke Chapter 4

He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went to the synagogue, as was his custom. He stood up to read, and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He unrolled it and found the place where it was written:

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
 because he has anointed me
 to bring good news to the poor
He has sent me to proclaim release to the prisoners
 and recovery of sight to the blind,
to set the oppressed go free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor.”¹

Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him. He began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”

All spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his lips. “Isn"t this Joseph's son?”they asked.

Jesus said to them, “Surely you will quote this proverb to me, ‘Physician, heal yourself!’ And you will say to me, ‘Do here also in your hometown what we have heard you did in Capernaum.’”

“Truly I tell you,” he continued, “no prophet is accepted in the his hometown. I assure you that there were many widows in Israel in the Elijah's time, when the heaven was shut up three and a half years, and there was a severe famine throughout the land. Yet Elijah was sent to none of them except to a widow at Zarephath in the region of Sidon. And there were many in Israel with leprosy² in the time of Elisha the prophet, and none of them was cleansed—only Naaman the Syrian.”

All the people in the synagogue were furious when they heard this. They got up, drove him out of the town, and took him to the brow of the hill on which the town was built, in order to throw him off the cliff. But he walked through the crowd and went on his way.

¹Isaiah 61:1-2 (see Septuagint) and Isaiah 58:6   ²The Greek word traditionally translated as ‘leprosy’ was used for various diseases affecting the skin.

(NIV. Parallel passages are not from the NIV, see below.)

Year B Ordinary 32 Wednesday

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

Unless otherwise indicated, Bible text is from Holy Bible New Revised Standard Version (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 right reserved.

Parallel passages are as indicated in the Modern English Version (MEV) , copyright © 2014 by Military Bible Association. Used by permission. All rights reserved. When text is taken from the MEV, the passage ends with (MEV) and the foregoing copyright notice applies.

Footnotes in the Christian Scriptures that show where a passage from the Hebrew Scripture is used are from The The Holy Bible: New International Version ® (NIV®), copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide. When text is taken from the NIV, the passage ends with (NIV) and the foregoing copyright notice applies.

Image credit: Bible Illustration of the Gospel of Luke Chapter 4 by Jim Padgett for Sweet Media, via Wikimedia Commons. This image is licensed under the Creative Commons 3.0 Attribution Share Alike license.

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Saturday: Preparation for the Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time

This week's blog post is here. It has a review of The Amplified Bible, a chance to think about our own blindness, and summaries and links for the lessons through Wednesday.

More information about the complementary and semi-continuous series is here: Which Series?

Complementary Hebrew Scripture from the Latter Prophets: Jeremiah 29:24-32

To Shemaiah of Nehelam you shall say: Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: In your own name you sent a letter to all the people who are in Jerusalem, and to the priest Zephaniah son of Maaseiah, and to all the priests, saying, The Lord himself has made you priest instead of the priest Jehoiada, so that there may be officers in the house of the Lord to control any madman who plays the prophet, to put him in the stocks and the collar. So now why have you not rebuked Jeremiah of Anathoth who plays the prophet for you? For he has actually sent to us in Babylon, saying, “It will be a long time; build houses and live in them, and plant gardens and eat what they produce.”

The priest Zephaniah read this letter in the hearing of the prophet Jeremiah. Then the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah: Send to all the exiles, saying, Thus says the Lord concerning Shemaiah of Nehelam: Because Shemaiah has prophesied to you, though I did not send him, and has led you to trust in a lie, therefore thus says the Lord: I am going to punish Shemaiah of Nehelam and his descendants; he shall not have anyone living among this people to see the good that I am going to do to my people, says the Lord, for he has spoken rebellion against the Lord.

Semi-continuous Hebrew Scripture: Job 42:7-9

After the Lord had spoken these words to Job, the Lord said to Eliphaz the Temanite: “My wrath is kindled against you and against your two friends; for you have not spoken of me what is right, as my servant Job has. Now therefore take seven bulls and seven rams, and go to my servant Job, and offer up for yourselves a burnt offering; and my servant Job shall pray for you, for I will accept his prayer not to deal with you according to your folly; for you have not spoken of me what is right, as my servant Job has done.” So Eliphaz the Temanite and Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite went and did what the Lord had told them; and the Lord accepted Job’s prayer.

Complementary Psalm 126

When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion,
 we were like those who dream.
Then our mouth was filled with laughter,
 and our tongue with shouts of joy;
then it was said among the nations,
 “The Lord has done great things for them.”
The Lord has done great things for us,
 and we rejoiced.

Restore our fortunes, O Lord,
 like the watercourses in the Negeb.
May those who sow in tears
 reap with shouts of joy.
Those who go out weeping,
 bearing the seed for sowing,
shall come home with shouts of joy,
 carrying their sheaves.

Semi-continuous Psalm 34:1-8, 19-22

I will bless the Lord at all times;
 his praise shall continually be in my mouth.
My soul makes its boast in the Lord;
 let the humble hear and be glad.
O magnify the Lord with me,
 and let us exalt his name together.

I sought the Lord, and he answered me,
 and delivered me from all my fears.
Look to him, and be radiant;
 so your faces shall never be ashamed.
This poor soul cried, and was heard by the Lord,
 and was saved from every trouble.
The angel of the Lord encamps
 around those who fear him, and delivers them.
O taste and see that the Lord is good;¹
 happy are those who take refuge in him.

Many are the afflictions of the righteous,
 but the Lord rescues them from them all.
He keeps all their bones;
 not one of them will be broken.²
Evil brings death to the wicked,
 and those who hate the righteous will be condemned.
The Lord redeems the life of his servants;
 none of those who take refuge in him will be condemned.

¹Peter uses this phrase in his instructions to believers in 1 Peter 2:1-10, which is our Monday Epistle Lesson.
²In
John 19:31-37 (part of the recounting of the crucifixion), this scripture is fulfilled. Ordinarily, when the soldiers grew weary of watching their crucified victims, they would break their femurs, which hastened death. Jesus died before this was done.

New Testament Lesson: Mark 8:22-26

Christ Healing the Blind Man

They came to Bethsaida. Some people brought a blind man to him and begged him to touch him. He took the blind man by the hand and led him out of the village; and when he had put saliva on his eyes and laid his hands on him, he asked him, “Can you see anything?” And the man looked up and said, “I can see people, but they look like trees, walking.” Then Jesus laid his hands on his eyes again; and he looked intently and his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly. Then he sent him away to his home, saying, “Do not even go into the village.”

Year B Ordinary 30 Saturday

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

Unless otherwise indicated, Bible text is from Holy Bible New Revised Standard Version with the Apocryphal / Deuterocanonical Books (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 right reserved.

Footnotes in the Hebrew Scriptures that show where the passage is used in the Christian Scriptures are based on information from the Complete Jewish Bible (Updated) (CJB) by David H. Stern, Copyright © 1998 and 2006 by David H. Stern, used by permission of Messianic Jewish Publishers, www.messianicjewish.net. All rights reserved worldwide. When text is taken from the CJB, the passage ends with (CJB) and the foregoing copyright notice applies.

Note: The links in the titles above take you to Amazon, where you can purchase them and benefit The Lectionary Company.

Image credit: Christ Healing the Blind Man by Eustache Le Sueur, via Wikimedia Commons. This is a public domain image.

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Monday: Reflection on the Twenty-fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Complementary Hebrew Scripture from the Former Prophets: 2 Kings 5:1-14

Naaman, commander of the army of the king of Aram, was a great man and in high favor with his master, because by him the Lord had given victory to Aram. The man, though a mighty warrior, suffered from leprosy. Now the Arameans on one of their raids had taken a young girl captive from the land of Israel, and she served Naaman's wife. She said to her mistress, “If only my lord were with the prophet who is in Samaria! He would cure him of his leprosy.” So Naaman went in and told his lord just what the girl from the land of Israel had said. And the king of Aram said, “Go then, and I will send along a letter to the king of Israel.”

He went, taking with him ten talents of silver, six thousand shekels of gold, and ten sets of garments. He brought the letter to the king of Israel, which read, “When this letter reaches you, know that I have sent to you my servant Naaman, that you may cure him of his leprosy.” When the king of Israel read the letter, he tore his clothes and said, “Am I God, to give death or life, that this man sends word to me to cure a man of his leprosy? Just look and see how he is trying to pick a quarrel with me.”

But when Elisha the man of God heard that the king of Israel had torn his clothes, he sent a message to the king, “Why have you torn your clothes? Let him come to me, that he may learn that there is a prophet in Israel.” So Naaman came with his horses and chariots, and halted at the entrance of Elisha's house. Elisha sent a messenger to him, saying, “Go, wash in the Jordan seven times, and your flesh shall be restored and you shall be clean.” But Naaman became angry and went away, saying, “I thought that for me he would surely come out, and stand and call on the name of the Lord his God, and would wave his hand over the spot, and cure the leprosy! Are not Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? Could I not wash in them, and be clean?” He turned and went away in a rage. But his servants approached and said to him, “Father, if the prophet had commanded you to do something difficult, would you not have done it? How much more, when all he said to you was, ‘Wash, and be clean’?” So he went down and immersed himself seven times in the Jordan, according to the word of the man of God; his flesh was restored like the flesh of a young boy, and he was clean.

Semi-continuous Hebrew Scripture from the Writings: Proverbs 27

Do not boast about tomorrow,
 for you do not know what a day may bring.
Let another praise you, and not your own mouth—
 a stranger, and not your own lips.
A stone is heavy, and sand is weighty,
 but a fool’s provocation is heavier than both.
Wrath is cruel, anger is overwhelming,
 but who is able to stand before jealousy?
Better is open rebuke
 than hidden love.
Well meant are the wounds a friend inflicts,
 but profuse are the kisses of an enemy.
The sated appetite spurns honey,
 but to a ravenous appetite even the bitter is sweet.
Like a bird that strays from its nest
 is one who strays from home.
Perfume and incense make the heart glad,
 but the soul is torn by trouble.
Do not forsake your friend or the friend of your parent;
 do not go to the house of your kindred in the day of your calamity.
Better is a neighbor who is nearby
 than kindred who are far away.
Be wise, my child, and make my heart glad,
 so that I may answer whoever reproaches me.
The clever see danger and hide;
 but the simple go on, and suffer for it.
Take the garment of one who has given surety for a stranger;
 seize the pledge given as surety for foreigners.
Whoever blesses a neighbor with a loud voice,
 rising early in the morning,
 will be counted as cursing.
A continual dripping on a rainy day
 and a contentious wife are alike;
to restrain her is to restrain the wind
 or to grasp oil in the right hand.
Iron sharpens iron,
 and one person sharpens the wits of another.
Anyone who tends a fig tree will eat its fruit,
 and anyone who takes care of a master will be honored.
Just as water reflects the face,
 so one human heart reflects another.
Sheol and Abaddon are never satisfied,
 and human eyes are never satisfied.
The crucible is for silver, and the furnace is for gold,
 so a person is tested by being praised.
Crush a fool in a mortar with a pestle
 along with crushed grain,
 but the folly will not be driven out.

Know well the condition of your flocks,
 and give attention to your herds;
for riches do not last forever,
 nor a crown for all generations.
When the grass is gone, and new growth appears,
 and the herbage of the mountains is gathered,
the lambs will provide your clothing,
 and the goats the price of a field;
there will be enough goats' milk for your food,
 for the food of your household
  and nourishment for your servant-girls.

Complementary Psalm 139:1-18

O Lord, you have searched me and known me.
You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
 you discern my thoughts from far away.
You search out my path and my lying down,
 and are acquainted with all my ways.
Even before a word is on my tongue,
 O Lord, you know it completely.
You hem me in, behind and before,
 and lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
 it is so high that I cannot attain it.

Where can I go from your spirit?
 Or where can I flee from your presence?
If I ascend to heaven, you are there;
 if I make my bed in Sheol, you are there.
If I take the wings of the morning
 and settle at the farthest limits of the sea,
even there your hand shall lead me,
 and your right hand shall hold me fast.
If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me,
 and the light around me become night,”
even the darkness is not dark to you;
 the night is as bright as the day,
 for darkness is as light to you.

For it was you who formed my inward parts;
 you knit me together in my mother's womb.
I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works;
 that I know very well.
My frame was not hidden from you,
 when I was being made in secret,
 intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes beheld my unformed substance.
In your book were written
 all the days that were formed for me,
 when none of them as yet existed.
How weighty to me are your thoughts, O God!
 How vast is the sum of them!
I try to count them—they are more than the sand;
 I come to the end—I am still with you.

Semi-continuous Psalm 128

Happy is everyone who fears the Lord,
 who walks in his ways.
You shall eat the fruit of the labor of your hands;
 you shall be happy, and it shall go well with you.

Your wife will be like a fruitful vine
 within your house;
your children will be like olive shoots
 around your table.
Thus shall the man be blessed
 who fears the Lord.

The Lord bless you from Zion.
 May you see the prosperity of Jerusalem
 the days of your life.
May you see your children’s children.
 Peace be upon Israel!

New Testament Epistle Lesson: James 4:8-17

Pathway Woods Trail Dark Mist Forest Path

Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Lament and mourn and weep. Let your laughter be turned into mourning and your joy into dejection. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you.

Do not speak evil against one another, brothers and sisters. Whoever speaks evil against another or judges another, speaks evil against the law and judges the law; but if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge. There is one lawgiver and judge who is able to save and to destroy. So who, then, are you to judge your neighbor?

Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a town and spend a year there, doing business and making money.” Yet you do not even know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wishes, we will live and do this or that.” As it is, you boast in your arrogance; all such boasting is evil. Anyone, then, who knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, commits sin.

Year B Ordinary 25 Monday

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

Unless otherwise indicated, Bible text is from The New Revised Standard Version, (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 right reserved.

Image credit: Mist by an unidentified photographer, via Max Pixel. This is a public domain image.

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Saturday: Preparation for the Eighteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Complementary Exodus 13:3-10 The Festival of Unleavened Bread

Semi-continuous Judges 6:1-10 A prophet calls out Israel for its disobedience.

Both Matthew 16:5-12 Jesus uses the figure of leaven to warn the apostles to beware of the Pharisees and the Sadducees.

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The Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Complementary Ezekiel 2:1-5 Ezekiel is called to speak God’s word to the people.

Semi-continuous 2 Samuel 5:1-5, 9-10 David becomes King over all Israel, and God is with him.

Both 2 Corinthians 12:2-10 God’s power is made perfect in weakness.

Both Mark 6:1-13 Jesus is rejected at Nazareth, and the twelve are sent out, two by two, to preach and to heal.

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The Fourth Sunday in Epiphany

Deuteronomy 18:15-20 Moses told the people, “The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among your own people.” He also told them that God said, “any prophet who speaks in the name of other gods, or who presumes to speak in my name a word that I have not commanded the prophet to speak—that prophet shall die.”

1 Corinthians 8:1-13 Paul lays out rules for eating food sacrificed to idols, emphasizing the effect on other believers.

Mark 1:21-28 Jesus heals a demoniac in the Capernaum synagogue on the Sabbath.

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Saturday: Preparation for the Fourth Sunday in Advent

Judges 13:2-24 An angel appears to Manoah’s wife, promising a son, who is to be a nazirite. After Samson was born God blessed him.

John 7:40-52 When they heard these words, some said “This is really the prophet” and others said “This is the Messiah.” The temple police went back to the chief priests and the Pharisees, who asked why they had not arrested him.

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