The Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Revised Common Lectionary Proper 10
Roman Catholic Proper 15

Complementary Hebrew Scripture from The Torah: Deuteronomy 30:9-14

And the Lord your God will make you abundantly prosperous in all your undertakings, in the fruit of your body, in the fruit of your livestock, and in the fruit of your soil. for The Lord will again take delight in prospering you, just as he delighted in prospering your ancestors, when you obey the Lord your God by observing his commandments and decrees that are written in this book of the law, because you turn to the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul.

Surely, this commandment that I am commanding you today is not too hard for you, nor is it too far away. It is not in heaven, that you should say, “Who will go up to heaven for us, and get it for us so that we may hear it and observe it?” Neither is it beyond the sea, that you should say, “Who will cross to the other side of the sea for us, and get it for us so that we may hear it and observe it?” No, the word is very near to you; it is in your mouth and in your heart for you to observe.¹

¹These verses are partly paraphrased in Romans 10:5-13, where Paul makes the point that salvation is for all.

Semi-continuous Hebrew Scripture from The Twelve Prophets: Amos 7:7-17

This is what he showed me: the Lord was standing beside a wall built with a plumb line, with a plumb line in his hand. And the Lord said to me, “Amos, what do you see?” And I said, “A plumb line.” Then the Lord said,

“See, I am setting a plumb line
in the midst of my people Israel;
I will never again pass them by;
the high places of Isaac shall be made desolate,
and the sanctuaries of Israel shall be laid waste,
and I will rise against the house of Jeroboam with the sword.”

Then Amaziah, the priest of Bethel, sent to King Jeroboam of Israel, saying, “Amos has conspired against you in the very center of the house of Israel; the land is not able to bear all his words. For thus Amos has said,

‘Jeroboam shall die by the sword,
and Israel must go into exile
away from his land.’”

And Amaziah said to Amos, “O seer, go, flee away to the land of Judah, earn your bread there, and prophesy there;
but never again prophesy at Bethel, for it is the king's sanctuary, and it is a temple of the kingdom.”

Then Amos answered Amaziah, “I am no prophet, nor a prophet's son; but I am a herdsman, and a dresser of sycamore trees, and the Lord took me from following the flock, and the Lord said to me, ‘Go, prophesy to my people Israel.’

“Now therefore hear the word of the Lord.
You say, ‘Do not prophesy against Israel,
and do not preach against the house of Isaac.’
Therefore thus says the Lord:
‘Your wife shall become a prostitute in the city,
and your sons and your daughters shall fall by the sword,
and your land shall be parceled out by line;
you yourself shall die in an unclean land,
and Israel shall surely go into exile away from its land.’”

Complementary Psalm 25:1-10

To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul.
O my God, in you I trust;
 do not let me be put to shame;
 do not let my enemies exult over me.
Do not let those who wait for you be put to shame;
 let them be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous.

Make me to know your ways, O Lord;
 teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth, and teach me,
 for you are the God of my salvation;
 for you I wait all day long.

Be mindful of your mercy, O Lord, and of your steadfast love,
 for they have been from of old.
Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
 according to your steadfast love remember me,
 for your goodness' sake, O Lord!

Good and upright is the Lord;
 therefore he instructs sinners in the way.
He leads the humble in what is right,
 and teaches the humble his way.
All the paths of the Lord are steadfast love and faithfulness,
 for those who keep his covenant and his decrees.

Semi-continuous Psalm 82

God has taken his place in the divine council;
 in the midst of the gods he holds judgment:
“How long will you judge unjustly
 and show partiality to the wicked?
Give justice to the weak and the orphan;
 maintain the right of the lowly and the destitute.
Rescue the weak and the needy;
 deliver them from the hand of the wicked.”

They have neither knowledge nor understanding,
 they walk around in darkness;
 all the foundations of the earth are shaken.

I say, “You are gods,
 children of the Most High, all of you;
nevertheless, you shall die like mortals,
 and fall like any prince.”
¹

Rise up, O God, judge the earth;
 for all the nations belong to you!

¹Jesus quotes the first part of this verse in response to those who plan to stone him. The episode is in John 10:22-39.

New Testament Epistle Lesson: Colossians 1:1-14

Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother,

To the saints and faithful brothers and sisters in Christ in Colossae: Grace to you and peace from God our Father.

In our prayers for you we always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, for we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love that you have for all the saints, because of the hope laid up for you in heaven. You have heard of this hope before in the word of the truth, the gospel that has come to you. Just as it is bearing fruit and growing in the whole world, so it has been bearing fruit among yourselves from the day you heard it and truly comprehended the grace of God. This you learned from Epaphras, our beloved fellow servant. He is a faithful minister of Christ on your behalf, and he has made known to us your love in the Spirit.

For this reason, since the day we heard it, we have not ceased praying for you and asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of God's will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so that you may lead lives worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, as you bear fruit in every good work and as you grow in the knowledge of God. May you be made strong with all the strength that comes from his glorious power, and may you be prepared to endure everything with patience, while joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has enabled you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the light. He has rescued us from the power of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

New Testament Gospel Lesson: Luke 10:25-37

Good-Samaritan.jpg

Just then a lawyer stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he said, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?” He said to him, “What is written in the law? What do you read there?” He answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind;¹ and your neighbor as yourself.²” And he said to him, “You have given the right answer; do this, and you will live.”

But wanting to justify himself, he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell into the hands of robbers, who stripped him, beat him, and went away, leaving him half dead. Now by chance a priest was going down that road; and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan while traveling came near him; and when he saw him, he was moved with pity. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, having poured oil and wine on them. Then he put him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him. The next day he took out two denarii, gave them to the innkeeper, and said, ‘Take care of him; and when I come back, I will repay you whatever more you spend.’ Which of these three, do you think, was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of the robbers?” He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.”

¹Deuteronomy 6:5   Leviticus 19:18

Year C RCL Proper 10, Catholic Proper 15, Ordinary 15 Sunday

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 Consultation on Common Texts.

Image Credit: The Good Samaritan by Vincent Van Gogh, Vanderbilt Digital Library [retrieved July 2, 2016]. Original source: https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-JxomvlRi2uo/SDTc3ruAVoI/AAAAAAAANxw/L07CjJU2AOo/s512/The%252520Good%252520Samaritan%252520by%252520Van%252520Gogh.jpg, licensed under Creative Commons 3.0

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Saturday: Preparation for the Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Revised Common Lectionary Proper 10
Roman Catholic Proper 15

Complementary Hebrew Scripture from The Torah: Leviticus 19:1-4, 32-37

The Lord spoke to Moses, saying:

Speak to all the congregation of the people of Israel and say to them: You shall be holy, for I the Lord your God am holy. You shall each revere your mother and father, and you shall keep my sabbaths: I am the Lord your God. Do not turn to idols or make cast images for yourselves: I am the Lord your God.

You shall rise before the aged, and defer to the old; and you shall fear your God: I am the Lord.

When an alien resides with you in your land, you shall not oppress the alien. The alien who resides with you shall be to you as the citizen among you; you shall love the alien as yourself, for you were aliens in the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.

You shall not cheat in measuring length, weight, or quantity. You shall have honest balances, honest weights, an honest ephah, and an honest hin: I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt. You shall keep all my statutes and all my ordinances, and observe them: I am the Lord.

Semi-continuous Hebrew Scripture from The Twelve Prophets: Amos 2:12-3:8

But you made the nazirites drink wine,
 and commanded the prophets,
 saying, “You shall not prophesy.”

So, I will press you down in your place,
 just as a cart presses down
 when it is full of sheaves.
Flight shall perish from the swift,
 and the strong shall not retain their strength,
 nor shall the mighty save their lives;
those who handle the bow shall not stand,
 and those who are swift of foot shall not save themselves,
 nor shall those who ride horses save their lives;
and those who are stout of heart among the mighty
 shall flee away naked in that day,
   says the Lord.

Hear this word that the Lord has spoken against you, O people of Israel, against the whole family that I brought up out of the land of Egypt:

You only have I known
 of all the families of the earth;
therefore I will punish you
 for all your iniquities.

Do two walk together
 unless they have made an appointment?
Does a lion roar in the forest,
 when it has no prey?
Does a young lion cry out from its den,
 if it has caught nothing?
Does a bird fall into a snare on the earth,
 when there is no trap for it?
Does a snare spring up from the ground,
 when it has taken nothing?
Is a trumpet blown in a city,
 and the people are not afraid?
Does disaster befall a city,
 unless the Lord has done it?
Surely the Lord God does nothing,
 without revealing his secret
 to his servants the prophets.
The lion has roared;
 who will not fear?
The Lord God has spoken;
 who can but prophesy?

Complementary Psalm 25:1-10

To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul.
O my God, in you I trust;
 do not let me be put to shame;
 do not let my enemies exult over me.
Do not let those who wait for you be put to shame;
 let them be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous.

Make me to know your ways, O Lord;
 teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth, and teach me,
 for you are the God of my salvation;
 for you I wait all day long.

Be mindful of your mercy, O Lord, and of your steadfast love,
 for they have been from of old.
Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
 according to your steadfast love remember me,
 for your goodness' sake, O Lord!

Good and upright is the Lord;
 therefore he instructs sinners in the way.
He leads the humble in what is right,
 and teaches the humble his way.
All the paths of the Lord are steadfast love and faithfulness,
 for those who keep his covenant and his decrees.

Semi-continuous Psalm 82

God has taken his place in the divine council;
 in the midst of the gods he holds judgment:
“How long will you judge unjustly
 and show partiality to the wicked?
Give justice to the weak and the orphan;
 maintain the right of the lowly and the destitute.
Rescue the weak and the needy;
 deliver them from the hand of the wicked.”

They have neither knowledge nor understanding,
 they walk around in darkness;
 all the foundations of the earth are shaken.

I say, “You are gods,
 children of the Most High, all of you;
nevertheless, you shall die like mortals,
 and fall like any prince.”
¹

Rise up, O God, judge the earth;
 for all the nations belong to you!

¹Jesus quotes the first part of this verse in response to those who plan to stone him. The episode is in John 10:22-39.

New Testament Gospel Lesson: John 3:16-21

“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.

“Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Those who believe in him are not condemned; but those who do not believe are condemned already, because they have not believed in the name of the only Son of God. And this is the judgment, that the light has come into the world, and people loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil. For all who do evil hate the light and do not come to the light, so that their deeds may not be exposed. But those who do what is true come to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that their deeds have been done in God.”

Year C RCL Proper 10, Catholic Proper 15, Ordinary 15 Saturday

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 Consultation on Common Texts.

Image credit: Image courtesy of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library (http://diglib.library.vanderbilt.edu/act-imagelink.pl?RC=47117) licensed under Creative Commons 3.0

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Friday: Preparation for the Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Revised Common Lectionary Proper 10
Roman Catholic Proper 15

Complementary Hebrew Scripture: Genesis 41:37-49

The proposal pleased Pharaoh and all his servants. Pharaoh said to his servants, “Can we find anyone else like this—one in whom is the spirit of God?” So Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Since God has shown you all this, there is no one so discerning and wise as you. You shall be over my house, and all my people shall order themselves as you command; only with regard to the throne will I be greater than you.” And Pharaoh said to Joseph, “See, I have set you over all the land of Egypt.” Removing his signet ring from his hand, Pharaoh put it on Joseph's hand; he arrayed him in garments of fine linen, and put a gold chain around his neck. He had him ride in the chariot of his second-in-command; and they cried out in front of him, “Bow the knee!” Thus he set him over all the land of Egypt. Moreover Pharaoh said to Joseph, “I am Pharaoh, and without your consent no one shall lift up hand or foot in all the land of Egypt.” Pharaoh gave Joseph the name Zaphenath-paneah; and he gave him Asenath daughter of Potiphera, priest of On, as his wife. Thus Joseph gained authority over the land of Egypt.

Joseph was thirty years old when he entered the service of Pharaoh king of Egypt. And Joseph went out from the presence of Pharaoh, and went through all the land of Egypt. During the seven plenteous years the earth produced abundantly. He gathered up all the food of the seven years when there was plenty in the land of Egypt, and stored up food in the cities; he stored up in every city the food from the fields around it. So Joseph stored up grain in such abundance—like the sand of the sea—that he stopped measuring it; it was beyond measure.

Semi-continuous Hebrew Scripture from The Twelve Prophets: Amos 2:4-11

Thus says the Lord:
For three transgressions of Judah,
 and for four, I will not revoke the punishment;
because they have rejected the law of the Lord,
 and have not kept his statutes,
but they have been led astray by the same lies
 after which their ancestors walked.
So I will send a fire on Judah,
 and it shall devour the strongholds of Jerusalem.

Thus says the Lord:
For three transgressions of Israel,
 and for four, I will not revoke the punishment;
because they sell the righteous for silver,
 and the needy for a pair of sandals—
they who trample the head of the poor into the dust of the earth,
 and push the afflicted out of the way;
father and son go in to the same girl,
 so that my holy name is profaned;
they lay themselves down beside every altar
 on garments taken in pledge;
and in the house of their God they drink
 wine bought with fines they imposed.

Yet I destroyed the Amorite before them,
 whose height was like the height of cedars,
 and who was as strong as oaks;
I destroyed his fruit above,
 and his roots beneath.
Also I brought you up out of the land of Egypt,
 and led you forty years in the wilderness,
 to possess the land of the Amorite.
And I raised up some of your children to be prophets
 and some of your youths to be nazirites.
 Is it not indeed so, O people of Israel?
   says the Lord.

Complementary Psalm 25:1-10

To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul.
O my God, in you I trust;
 do not let me be put to shame;
 do not let my enemies exult over me.
Do not let those who wait for you be put to shame;
 let them be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous.

Make me to know your ways, O Lord;
 teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth, and teach me,
 for you are the God of my salvation;
 for you I wait all day long.

Be mindful of your mercy, O Lord, and of your steadfast love,
 for they have been from of old.
Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
 according to your steadfast love remember me,
 for your goodness' sake, O Lord!

Good and upright is the Lord;
 therefore he instructs sinners in the way.
He leads the humble in what is right,
 and teaches the humble his way.
All the paths of the Lord are steadfast love and faithfulness,
 for those who keep his covenant and his decrees.

Semi-continuous Psalm 82

God has taken his place in the divine council;
 in the midst of the gods he holds judgment:
“How long will you judge unjustly
 and show partiality to the wicked?
Give justice to the weak and the orphan;
 maintain the right of the lowly and the destitute.
Rescue the weak and the needy;
 deliver them from the hand of the wicked.”

They have neither knowledge nor understanding,
 they walk around in darkness;
 all the foundations of the earth are shaken.

I say, “You are gods,
 children of the Most High, all of you;
nevertheless, you shall die like mortals,
 and fall like any prince.”
¹

Rise up, O God, judge the earth;
 for all the nations belong to you!

¹Jesus quotes the first part of this verse in response to those who plan to stone him. The episode is in John 10:22-39.

New Testament Lesson: Acts 7:9-16

[This is part of Stephen's defense before the Sanhedrin; the entire defense is in Acts 7:1-53.]

“The patriarchs, jealous of Joseph, sold him into Egypt; but God was with him, and rescued him from all his afflictions, and enabled him to win favor and to show wisdom when he stood before Pharaoh, king of Egypt, who appointed him ruler over Egypt and over all his household. Now there came a famine throughout Egypt and Canaan, and great suffering, and our ancestors could find no food. But when Jacob heard that there was grain in Egypt, he sent our ancestors there on their first visit. On the second visit Joseph made himself known to his brothers, and Joseph's family became known to Pharaoh. Then Joseph sent and invited his father Jacob and all his relatives to come to him, seventy-five in all; so Jacob went down to Egypt. He himself died there as well as our ancestors, and their bodies were brought back to Shechem and laid in the tomb that Abraham had bought for a sum of silver from the sons of Hamor in Shechem.”

Year C RCL Proper 10, Catholic Proper 15, Ordinary 15 Friday

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 Consultation on Common Texts.

Image Credit: Gustave Doré [Public domain] Jacob Goes to Egypt, from Doré's English Bible. via Wikimedia Commons

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Thursday: Preparation for the Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Revised Common Lectionary Proper 10
Roman Catholic Proper 15

Complementary Hebrew Scripture from The Torah: Genesis 41:14-36

Then Pharaoh sent for Joseph, and he was hurriedly brought out of the dungeon. When he had shaved himself and changed his clothes, he came in before Pharaoh. And Pharaoh said to Joseph, “I have had a dream, and there is no one who can interpret it. I have heard it said of you that when you hear a dream you can interpret it.” Joseph answered Pharaoh, “It is not I; God will give Pharaoh a favorable answer.” Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, “In my dream I was standing on the banks of the Nile; and seven cows, fat and sleek, came up out of the Nile and fed in the reed grass. Then seven other cows came up after them, poor, very ugly, and thin. Never had I seen such ugly ones in all the land of Egypt. The thin and ugly cows ate up the first seven fat cows, but when they had eaten them no one would have known that they had done so, for they were still as ugly as before. Then I awoke. I fell asleep a second time and I saw in my dream seven ears of grain, full and good, growing on one stalk, and seven ears, withered, thin, and blighted by the east wind, sprouting after them; and the thin ears swallowed up the seven good ears. But when I told it to the magicians, there was no one who could explain it to me.”

Then Joseph said to Pharaoh, “Pharaoh's dreams are one and the same; God has revealed to Pharaoh what he is about to do. The seven good cows are seven years, and the seven good ears are seven years; the dreams are one. The seven lean and ugly cows that came up after them are seven years, as are the seven empty ears blighted by the east wind. They are seven years of famine. It is as I told Pharaoh; God has shown to Pharaoh what he is about to do. There will come seven years of great plenty throughout all the land of Egypt. After them there will arise seven years of famine, and all the plenty will be forgotten in the land of Egypt; the famine will consume the land. The plenty will no longer be known in the land because of the famine that will follow, for it will be very grievous. And the doubling of Pharaoh's dream means that the thing is fixed by God, and God will shortly bring it about. Now therefore let Pharaoh select a man who is discerning and wise, and set him over the land of Egypt. Let Pharaoh proceed to appoint overseers over the land, and take one-fifth of the produce of the land of Egypt during the seven plenteous years. Let them gather all the food of these good years that are coming, and lay up grain under the authority of Pharaoh for food in the cities, and let them keep it. That food shall be a reserve for The land against the seven years of famine that are to befall the land of Egypt, so that the land may not perish through the famine.”

Semi-continuous Hebrew Scripture from The Twelve Prophets: Amos 1:1-2:3

The words of Amos, who was among the shepherds of Tekoa, which he saw concerning Israel in the days of King Uzziah of Judah and in the days of King Jeroboam son of Joash of Israel, two years before the earthquake.

And he said:

The Lord roars from Zion,
and utters his voice from Jerusalem;
the pastures of the shepherds wither,
and the top of Carmel dries up.

Thus says the Lord:
For three transgressions of Damascus,
 and for four, I will not revoke the punishment;
because they have threshed Gilead
 with threshing sledges of iron.
So I will send a fire on the house of Hazael,
 and it shall devour the strongholds of Ben-hadad.
I will break the gate bars of Damascus,
 and cut off the inhabitants from the Valley of Aven,
 and the one who holds the scepter rom Beth-eden;
 and the people of Aram shall go into exile to Kir,
   says the Lord.

Thus says the Lord:
For three transgressions of Gaza,
 and for four, I will not revoke the punishment;
because they carried into exile entire communities,
 to hand them over to Edom.
So I will send a fire on the wall of Gaza,
 fire that shall devour its strongholds.
I will cut off the inhabitants from Ashdod,
 and the one who holds the scepter from Ashkelon;
I will turn my hand against Ekron,
 and the remnant of the Philistines shall perish,
   says the Lord God.

Thus says the Lord:
For three transgressions of Tyre,
 and for four, I will not revoke the punishment;
because they delivered entire communities over to Edom,
 and did not remember the covenant of kinship.
So I will send a fire on the wall of Tyre,
 fire that shall devour its strongholds.

Thus says the Lord:
For three transgressions of Edom,
 and for four, I will not revoke the punishment;
because he pursued his brother with the sword
 and cast off all pity;
he maintained his anger perpetually,
 and kept his wrath forever.
So I will send a fire on Teman,
 and it shall devour the strongholds of Bozrah.

Thus says the Lord:
For three transgressions of the Ammonites,
 and for four, I will not revoke the punishment;
because they have ripped open pregnant women in Gilead
in order to enlarge their territory.
So I will kindle a fire against the wall of Rabbah,
 fire that shall devour its strongholds,
with shouting on the day of battle,
 with a storm on the day of the whirlwind;
then their king shall go into exile,
 he and his officials together,
   says the Lord.

Thus says the Lord:
For three transgressions of Moab,
 and for four, I will not revoke the punishment;
because he burned to lime
 the bones of the king of Edom.
So I will send a fire on Moab,
 and it shall devour the strongholds of Kerioth,
and Moab shall die amid uproar,
 amid shouting and the sound of the trumpet;
I will cut off the ruler from its midst,
 and will kill all its officials with him,
   says the Lord.

Complementary Psalm 25:1-10

To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul.
O my God, in you I trust;
 do not let me be put to shame;
 do not let my enemies exult over me.
Do not let those who wait for you be put to shame;
 let them be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous.

Make me to know your ways, O Lord;
 teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth, and teach me,
 for you are the God of my salvation;
 for you I wait all day long.

Be mindful of your mercy, O Lord, and of your steadfast love,
 for they have been from of old.
Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
 according to your steadfast love remember me,
 for your goodness' sake, O Lord!

Good and upright is the Lord;
 therefore he instructs sinners in the way.
He leads the humble in what is right,
 and teaches the humble his way.
All the paths of the Lord are steadfast love and faithfulness,
 for those who keep his covenant and his decrees.

Semi-continuous Psalm 82

God has taken his place in the divine council;
 in the midst of the gods he holds judgment:
“How long will you judge unjustly
 and show partiality to the wicked?
Give justice to the weak and the orphan;
 maintain the right of the lowly and the destitute.
Rescue the weak and the needy;
 deliver them from the hand of the wicked.”

They have neither knowledge nor understanding,
 they walk around in darkness;
 all the foundations of the earth are shaken.

I say, “You are gods,
 children of the Most High, all of you;
nevertheless, you shall die like mortals,
 and fall like any prince.”
¹

Rise up, O God, judge the earth;
 for all the nations belong to you!

¹Jesus quotes the first part of this verse in response to those who plan to stone him. The episode is in John 10:22-39.

New Testament Epistle Lesson: James 2:14-26

James.jpg

What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if you say you have faith but do not have works? Can faith save you? If a brother or sister is naked and lacks daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and eat your fill,” and yet you do not supply their bodily needs, what is the good of that? So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead.

But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I by my works will show you my faith. You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder. Do you want to be shown, you senseless person, that faith apart from works is barren? Was not our ancestor Abraham justified by works when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was brought to completion by the works. Thus the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness,” and he was called the friend of God. You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. Likewise, was not Rahab the prostitute also justified by works when she welcomed the messengers and sent them out by another road? For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is also dead.

Year C RCL Proper 10, Catholic Proper 15, Ordinary 15 Thursday

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 Consultation on Common Texts.

Image Credit: Image from https://vimeo.com/53450533, Part of a series by the Athey Creek Church: https://vimeo.com/atheycreek

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Wednesday: Reflection on the Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Revised Common Lectionary Proper 9
Roman Catholic Proper 14

Complementary Hebrew Scripture from The Former Prophets: Joshua 23:1-16

A long time afterward, when the Lord had given rest to Israel from all their enemies all around, and Joshua was old and well advanced in years, Joshua summoned all Israel, their elders and heads, their judges and officers, and said to them, “I am now old and well advanced in years; and you have seen all that the Lord your God has done to all these nations for your sake, for it is the Lord your God who has fought for you. I have allotted to you as an inheritance for your tribes those nations that remain, along with all the nations that I have already cut off, from the Jordan to the Great Sea in the west. The Lord your God will push them back before you, and drive them out of your sight; and you shall possess their land, as the Lord your God promised you. Therefore be very steadfast to observe and do all that is written in the book of the law of Moses, turning aside from it neither to the right nor to the left, so that you may not be mixed with these nations left here among you, or make mention of the names of their gods, or swear by them, or serve them, or bow yourselves down to them, but hold fast to the Lord your God, as you have done to this day. For the Lord has driven out before you great and strong nations; and as for you, no one has been able to withstand you to this day. One of you puts to flight a thousand, since it is the Lord your God who fights for you, as he promised you. Be very careful, therefore, to love the Lord your God. For if you turn back, and join the survivors of these nations left here among you, and intermarry with them, so that you marry their women and they yours, know assuredly that the Lord your God will not continue to drive out these nations before you; but they shall be a snare and a trap for you, a scourge on your sides, and thorns in your eyes, until you perish from this good land that the Lord your God has given you.

“And now I am about to go the way of all the earth, and you know in your hearts and souls, all of you, that not one thing has failed of all the good things that the Lord your God promised concerning you; all have come to pass for you, not one of them has failed. But just as all the good things that the Lord your God promised concerning you have been fulfilled for you, so the Lord will bring upon you all the bad things, until he has destroyed you from this good land that the Lord your God has given you. If you transgress the covenant of the Lord your God, which he enjoined on you, and go and serve other gods and bow down to them, then the anger of the Lord will be kindled against you, and you shall perish quickly from the good land that he has given to you.”

Semi-continuous Hebrew Scripture from The Former Prophets: 2 Kings 6:1-7

Now the company of prophets said to Elisha, “As you see, the place where we live under your charge is too small for us. Let us go to the Jordan, and let us collect logs there, one for each of us, and build a place there for us to live.” He answered, “Do so.” Then one of them said, “Please come with your servants.” And he answered, “I will.” So he went with them. When they came to the Jordan, they cut down trees. But as one was felling a log, his ax head fell into the water; he cried out, “Alas, master! It was borrowed.” Then the man of God said, “Where did it fall?” When he showed him the place, he cut off a stick, and threw it in there, and made the iron float. He said, “Pick it up.” So he reached out his hand and took it.

Complementary Psalm 119:73-80

Your hands have made and fashioned me;
 give me understanding that I may
learn your commandments.
Those who fear you shall see me and rejoice,
 because I have hoped in your word.
I know, O Lord, that your judgments are right,
 and that in faithfulness you have humbled me.
Let your steadfast love become my comfort
 according to your promise to your servant.
Let your mercy come to me, that I may live;
 for your law is my delight.
Let the arrogant be put to shame,
 because they have subverted me with guile;
 as for me, I will meditate on your precepts.
Let those who fear you turn to me,
 so that they may know your decrees.
May my heart be blameless in your statutes,
 so that I may not be put to shame.

Semi-continuous 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.¹

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.

¹Jesus quotes the first part of this verse when explaining (in Matthew 7:21-23) what will happen to those who deceive themselves.

New Testament Gospel Lesson: Luke 10:13-16

There is a parallel passage at Matthew 11:20-24.

“Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the deeds of power done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago, sitting in sackcloth and ashes. But at the judgment it will be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon than for you. And you, Capernaum,

will you be exalted to heaven?
No, you will be brought down to Hades.

“Whoever listens to you listens to me, and whoever rejects you rejects me, and whoever rejects me rejects the one who sent me.”

Year C Revised Common Lectionary Proper 9, Roman Catholic Proper 14, Ordinary 14, 14 Wednesday

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: Jesus Teaching on the Sea Shore by James Tissot. Downloaded from http://catholic-resources.org/Tissot-FullColor/Tissot-B-1119.jpg

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Tuesday: Reflection on the 14th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Revised Common Lectionary Proper 9
Roman Catholic Proper 14

Complementary Hebrew Scripture from The Latter Prophets: Jeremiah 8:4-13

You shall say to them, Thus says the Lord:
When people fall, do they not get up again?
 If they go astray, do they not turn back?
Why then has this people turned away
 in perpetual backsliding?
They have held fast to deceit,
 they have refused to return.
I have given heed and listened,
 but they do not speak honestly;
no one repents of wickedness,
 saying, “What have I done!”
All of them turn to their own course,
 like a horse plunging headlong into battle.
Even the stork in the heavens
 knows its times;
and the turtledove, swallow, and crane
 observe the time of their coming;
but my people do not know
 the ordinance of the Lord.

How can you say, “We are wise,
 and the law of the Lord is with us,”
when, in fact, the false pen of the scribes
 has made it into a lie?
The wise shall be put to shame,
 they shall be dismayed and taken;
since they have rejected the word of the Lord,
 what wisdom is in them?
Therefore I will give their wives to others
 and their fields to conquerors,
because from the least to the greatest
 everyone is greedy for unjust gain;
from prophet to priest
 everyone deals falsely.
They have treated the wound of my people carelessly,
 saying, “Peace, peace,”
 when there is no peace.
They acted shamefully, they committed abomination;
 yet they were not at all ashamed,
 they did not know how to blush.
Therefore they shall fall among those who fall;
 at the time when I punish them, they shall be overthrown,
   says the Lord.

When I wanted to gather them, says the Lord,
 there are no grapes on the vine,
 nor figs on the fig tree;
even the leaves are withered,
 and what I gave them has passed away from them.

Semi-continuous Hebrew Scripture from The Former Prophets: 2 Kings 5:19b-27

But when Naaman had gone from him a short distance, Gehazi, the servant of Elisha the man of God, thought, “My master has let that Aramean Naaman off too lightly by not accepting from him what he offered. As the Lord lives, I will run after him and get something out of him.” So Gehazi went after Naaman. When Naaman saw someone running after him, he jumped down from the chariot to meet him and said, “Is everything all right?” He replied, “Yes, but my master has sent me to say, ‘Two members of a company of prophets have just come to me from the hill country of Ephraim; please give them a talent of silver and two changes of clothing.’” Naaman said, “Please accept two talents.” He urged him, and tied up two talents of silver in two bags, with two changes of clothing, and gave them to two of his servants, who carried them in front of Gehazi. When he came to the citadel, he took the bags from them, and stored them inside; he dismissed the men, and they left.

He went in and stood before his master; and Elisha said to him, “Where have you been, Gehazi?” He answered, “Your servant has not gone anywhere at all.” But he said to him, “Did I not go with you in spirit when someone left his chariot to meet you? Is this a time to accept money and to accept clothing, olive orchards and vineyards, sheep and oxen, and male and female slaves? Therefore the leprosy of Naaman shall cling to you, and to your descendants forever.” So he left his presence leprous, as white as snow.

Complementary Psalm 119:73-80

Your hands have made and fashioned me;
 give me understanding that I may
learn your commandments.
Those who fear you shall see me and rejoice,
 because I have hoped in your word.
I know, O Lord, that your judgments are right,
 and that in faithfulness you have humbled me.
Let your steadfast love become my comfort
 according to your promise to your servant.
Let your mercy come to me, that I may live;
 for your law is my delight.
Let the arrogant be put to shame,
 because they have subverted me with guile;
 as for me, I will meditate on your precepts.
Let those who fear you turn to me,
 so that they may know your decrees.
May my heart be blameless in your statutes,
 so that I may not be put to shame.

Semi-continuous 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.¹

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.

¹Jesus quotes the first part of this verse when explaining (in Matthew 7:21-23) what will happen to those who deceive themselves.

New Testament Lesson: Acts 19:28-41

Riot-2.png

When they heard this [Demetrius' defense of Artemis and dismissal of Paul], they were enraged and shouted, “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!” The city was filled with the confusion; and people rushed together to the theater, dragging with them Gaius and Aristarchus, Macedonians who were Paul's travel companions. Paul wished to go into the crowd, but the disciples would not let him; even some officials of the province of Asia, who were friendly to him, sent him a message urging him not to venture into the theater. Meanwhile, some were shouting one thing, some another; for the assembly was in confusion, and most of them did not know why they had come together. Some of the crowd gave instructions to Alexander, whom the Jews had pushed forward. And Alexander motioned for silence and tried to make a defense before the people. But when they recognized that he was a Jew, for about two hours all of them shouted in unison, “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!” But when the town clerk had quieted the crowd, he said, “Citizens of Ephesus, who is there that does not know that the city of the Ephesians is the temple keeper of the great Artemis and of the statue that fell from heaven? Since these things cannot be denied, you ought to be quiet and do nothing rash. You have brought these men here who are neither temple robbers nor blasphemers of our goddess. If therefore Demetrius and the artisans with him have a complaint against anyone, the courts are open, and there are proconsuls; let them bring charges there against one another. If there is anything further you want to know, it must be settled in the regular assembly. For we are in danger of being charged with rioting today, since there is no cause that we can give to justify this commotion.” When he had said this, he dismissed the assembly.

Year C Revised Common Lectionary Proper 9, Roman Catholic Proper 14, Ordinary 14, 14 Tuesday

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: Riot a public domain image.

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Monday: Reflection on the 14th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Revised Common Lectionary Proper 9
Roman Catholic Proper 14

Complementary Hebrew Scripture from The Latter Prophets: Jeremiah 6:10-19

To whom shall I speak and give warning,
 that they may hear?
See, their ears are closed,
 they cannot listen.
The word of the Lord is to them an object of scorn;
 they take no pleasure in it.¹

But I am full of the wrath of the Lord;
 I am weary of holding it in.

Pour it out on the children in the street,
 and on the gatherings of young men as well;
both husband and wife shall be taken,
 the old folk and the very aged.
Their houses shall be turned over to others,
 their fields and wives together;
for I will stretch out my hand
 against the inhabitants of the land,
   says the Lord.

For from the least to the greatest of them,
 everyone is greedy for unjust gain;
and from prophet to priest,
 everyone deals falsely.
They have treated the wound of my people carelessly,
 saying, “Peace, peace,”
 when there is no peace.
They acted shamefully, they committed abomination;
 yet they were not ashamed,
 they did not know how to blush.
Therefore they shall fall among those who fall;
 at the time that I punish them, they shall be overthrown,
   says the Lord.

Thus says the Lord:
Stand at the crossroads, and look,
 and ask for the ancient paths,
where the good way lies; and walk in it,
 and find rest for your souls.
But they said, “We will not walk in it.”²

Also I raised up sentinels for you:
 “Give heed to the sound of the trumpet!”
But they said, “We will not give heed.”
Therefore hear, O nations,
 and know, O congregation, what will happen to them.
Hear, O earth; I am going to bring disaster on this people,
 the fruit of their schemes,
because they have not given heed to my words;
 and as for my teaching, they have rejected it.

¹The end of Stephen's defense before the Sanhedrin (Acts 7:1-53) echoes this verse.
²The first part of this verse is reflected in Jesus' thanks to God found in
Matthew 11:25-29

Semi-continuous Hebrew Scripture from The Former Prophets: 2 Kings 5:15-19a

Then Naaman returned to the man of God [Elisha], he and all his company; he came and stood before him and said, “Now I know that there is no God in all the earth except in Israel; please accept a present from your servant.” But he said, “As the Lord lives, whom I serve, I will accept nothing!” He urged him to accept, but he refused. Then Naaman said, “If not, please let two mule-loads of earth be given to your servant; for your servant will no longer offer burnt offering or sacrifice to any god except the Lord. But may the Lord pardon your servant on one count: when my master goes into the house of Rimmon to worship there, leaning on my arm, and I bow down in the house of Rimmon, when I do bow down in the house of Rimmon, may the Lord pardon your servant on this one count.” He said to him, “Go in peace.”

Complementary Psalm 119:73-80

Your hands have made and fashioned me;
 give me understanding that I may
learn your commandments.
Those who fear you shall see me and rejoice,
 because I have hoped in your word.
I know, O Lord, that your judgments are right,
 and that in faithfulness you have humbled me.
Let your steadfast love become my comfort
 according to your promise to your servant.
Let your mercy come to me, that I may live;
 for your law is my delight.
Let the arrogant be put to shame,
 because they have subverted me with guile;
 as for me, I will meditate on your precepts.
Let those who fear you turn to me,
 so that they may know your decrees.
May my heart be blameless in your statutes,
 so that I may not be put to shame.

Semi-continuous 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.¹

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.

¹Jesus quotes the first part of this verse when explaining (in Matthew 7:21-23) what will happen to those who deceive themselves.

New Testament Lesson: Acts 19:21-27

A reconsturction of the temple of Artemis

Now after these things had been accomplished, Paul resolved in the Spirit to go through Macedonia and Achaia, and then to go on to Jerusalem. He said, “After I have gone there, I must also see Rome.” So he sent two of his helpers, Timothy and Erastus, to Macedonia, while he himself stayed for some time longer in Asia.

About that time no little disturbance broke out concerning the Way. A man named Demetrius, a silversmith who made silver shrines of Artemis, brought no little business to the artisans. These he gathered together, with the workers of the same trade, and said, “Men, you know that we get our wealth from this business. You also see and hear that not only in Ephesus but in almost the whole of Asia this Paul has persuaded and drawn away a considerable number of people by saying that gods made with hands are not gods. And there is danger not only that this trade of ours may come into disrepute but also that the temple of the great goddess Artemis will be scorned, and she will be deprived of her majesty that brought all Asia and the world to worship her.”

Year C Revised Common Lectionary Proper 9, Roman Catholic Proper 14, Ordinary 14, 14 Monday

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: A model of the temple of Artemis, Zee Prime at cs.wikipedia [GFDL, CC-BY-SA-3.0 or CC BY-SA 2.5], from Wikimedia Commons

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The Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Revised Common Lectionary Proper 9
Roman Catholic Proper 14

Complementary Hebrew Scripture from The Latter Prophets: Isaiah 66:10-14

Rejoice with Jerusalem, and be glad for her,
 all you who love her; rejoice with her in joy,
all you who mourn over her—
 that you may nurse and be satisfied
from her consoling breast;
 that you may drink deeply with delight
from her glorious bosom.

For thus says the Lord:
I will extend prosperity to her like a river,
 and the wealth of the nations like an overflowing stream;
 and you shall nurse and be carried on her arm,
 and dandled on her knees.
As a mother comforts her child,
 so I will comfort you;
 you shall be comforted in Jerusalem.

You shall see, and your heart shall rejoice;
 your bodies shall flourish like the grass;
and it shall be known that the hand of the Lord is with his servants,
 and his indignation is against his enemies.

Semi-continuous 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.

Complementary Psalm 66:1-9

Make a joyful noise to God, all the earth;
 sing the glory of his name;
 give to him glorious praise.
Say to God, “How awesome are your deeds!
 Because of your great power, your enemies cringe before you.
All the earth worships you;
 they sing praises to you,
 sing praises to your name.”

Come and see what God has done:
 he is awesome in his deeds among mortals.
He turned the sea into dry land;
 they passed through the river on foot.
There we rejoiced in him,
 who rules by his might forever,
whose eyes keep watch on the nations—
 let the rebellious not exalt themselves.

Bless our God, O peoples,
 let the sound of his praise be heard,
who has kept us among the living,
 and has not let our feet slip.

Semi-continuous Psalm 30

I will extol you, O Lord, for you have drawn me up,
 and did not let my foes rejoice over me.
O Lord my God, I cried to you for help,
 and you have healed me.
O Lord, you brought up my soul from Sheol,
 restored me to life from among those gone down to the Pit.

Sing praises to the Lord, O you his faithful ones,
 and give thanks to his holy name.
For his anger is but for a moment;
 his favor is for a lifetime.
Weeping may linger for the night,
 but joy comes with the morning.

As for me, I said in my prosperity,
 “I shall never be moved.”
By your favor, O Lord,
 you had established me as a strong mountain;
you hid your face; I was dismayed.

To you, O Lord, I cried,
 and to the Lord I made supplication:
“What profit is there in my death,
 if I go down to the Pit?
Will the dust praise you?
 Will it tell of your faithfulness?
Hear, O Lord, and be gracious to me!
 O Lord, be my helper!”

You have turned my mourning into dancing;
 you have taken off my sackcloth
 and clothed me with joy,
so that my soul may praise you and not be silent.
 O Lord my God, I will give thanks to you forever.

New Testament Epistle Lesson: Galatians 6:1-16

My friends, if anyone is detected in a transgression, you who have received the Spirit should restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness. Take care that you yourselves are not tempted. Bear one another's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. For if those who are nothing think they are something, they deceive themselves. All must test their own work; then that work, rather than their neighbor's work, will become a cause for pride. For all must carry their own loads.

Those who are taught the word must share in all good things with their teacher.

Do not be deceived; God is not mocked, for you reap whatever you sow. If you sow to your own flesh, you will reap corruption from the flesh; but if you sow to the Spirit, you will reap eternal life from the Spirit. So let us not grow weary in doing what is right, for we will reap at harvest-time, if we do not give up. So then, whenever we have an opportunity, let us work for the good of all, and especially for those of the family of faith.

See what large letters I make when I am writing in my own hand! It is those who want to make a good showing in the flesh that try to compel you to be circumcised—only that they may not be persecuted for the cross of Christ. Even the circumcised do not themselves obey the law, but they want you to be circumcised so that they may boast about your flesh. May I never boast of anything except the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. For neither circumcision nor uncircumcision is anything; but a new creation is everything! As for those who will follow this rule—peace be upon them, and mercy, and upon the Israel of God.

New Testament Gospel Lesson: Luke 10:1-11, 16-20

The-72.jpg

After this the Lord appointed seventy others and sent them on ahead of him in pairs to every town and place where he himself intended to go. He said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore ask the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest. Go on your way. See, I am sending you out like lambs into the midst of wolves. Carry no purse, no bag, no sandals; and greet no one on the road. Whatever house you enter, first say, ‘Peace to this house!’ And if anyone is there who shares in peace, your peace will rest on that person; but if not, it will return to you. Remain in the same house, eating and drinking whatever they provide, for the laborer deserves to be paid. Do not move about from house to house. Whenever you enter a town and its people welcome you, eat what is set before you; cure the sick who are there, and say to them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’ But whenever you enter a town and they do not welcome you, go out into its streets and say, ‘Even the dust of your town that clings to our feet, we wipe off in protest against you. Yet know this: the kingdom of God has come near.’

“Whoever listens to you listens to me, and whoever rejects you rejects me, and whoever rejects me rejects the one who sent me.”

The seventy returned with joy, saying, “Lord, in your name even the demons submit to us!” He said to them, “I watched Satan fall from heaven like a flash of lightning. See, I have given you authority to tread on snakes and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy; and nothing will hurt you. Nevertheless, do not rejoice at this, that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”

Year C Revised Common Lectionary Proper 9, Roman Catholic Proper 14, Ordinary 14, 14 Sunday

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: “Calling of the Apostles” by Domenico Ghirlandaio, in the Sistine Chapel, a public domain image downloaded via Wikimedia Commons

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