Thursday 24 April 2008 DAILY LECTIONARY

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Thu Apr 24 02:00:00 EDT 2008

Thursday 24 April 2008  

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Leviticus 19:26-37

You shall not eat anything with its blood. You shall not practise augury
or witchcraft. You shall not round off the hair on your temples or mar
the edges of your beard. You shall not make any gashes in your flesh for
the dead or tattoo any marks upon you: I am the Lord.

 Do not profane your daughter by making her a prostitute, so that the
land may not become prostituted and full of depravity. You shall keep my
sabbaths and reverence my sanctuary: I am the Lord.

 Do not turn to mediums or wizards; do not seek them out, to be defiled
by them: 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.
2 Thessalonians 1:1-12

Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy,
To the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus

 Grace to you and peace from God our* Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
 We must always give thanks to God for you, brothers and sisters,* as is
right, because your faith is growing abundantly, and the love of every
one of you for one another is increasing. Therefore we ourselves boast
of you among the churches of God for your steadfastness and faith during
all your persecutions and the afflictions that you are enduring.
 This is evidence of the righteous judgement of God, and is intended to
make you worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you are also suffering.
For it is indeed just of God to repay with affliction those who afflict
you, and to give relief to the afflicted as well as to us, when the Lord
Jesus is revealed from heaven with his mighty angels in flaming fire,
inflicting vengeance on those who do not know God and on those who do
not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. These will suffer the punishment
of eternal destruction, separated from the presence of the Lord and from
the glory of his might, when he comes to be glorified by his saints and
to be marvelled at on that day among all who have believed, because our
testimony to you was believed. To this end we always pray for you,
asking that our God will make you worthy of his call and will fulfil by
his power every good resolve and work of faith, so that the name of our
Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the
grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Matthew 6:25-34

'Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat
or what you will drink,* or about your body, what you will wear. Is not
life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds
of the air; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet
your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?
And can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your span of life?*
And why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field,
how they grow; they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon
in all his glory was not clothed like one of these. But if God so
clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is
thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you-you of little
faith? Therefore do not worry, saying, "What will we eat?" or "What will
we drink?" or "What will we wear?" For it is the Gentiles who strive for
all these things; and indeed your heavenly Father knows that you need
all these things. But strive first for the kingdom of God* and his*
righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

 'So do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring worries of its
own. Today's trouble is enough for today.
Morning Psalms:  Psalm 70, 71

Psalm 70

Be pleased, O God, to deliver me.
   O Lord, make haste to help me! 
Let those be put to shame and confusion
   who seek my life.
Let those be turned back and brought to dishonour
   who desire to hurt me. 
Let those who say, 'Aha, Aha!'
   turn back because of their shame. 

Let all who seek you
   rejoice and be glad in you.
Let those who love your salvation
   say evermore, 'God is great!' 
But I am poor and needy;
   hasten to me, O God!
You are my help and my deliverer;
   O Lord, do not delay!

Psalm 71

In you, O Lord, I take refuge;
   let me never be put to shame. 
In your righteousness deliver me and rescue me;
   incline your ear to me and save me. 
Be to me a rock of refuge,
   a strong fortress,* to save me,
   for you are my rock and my fortress. 

Rescue me, O my God, from the hand of the wicked,
   from the grasp of the unjust and cruel. 
For you, O Lord, are my hope,
   my trust, O Lord, from my youth. 
Upon you I have leaned from my birth;
   it was you who took me from my mother's womb.
My praise is continually of you. 

I have been like a portent to many,
   but you are my strong refuge. 
My mouth is filled with your praise,
   and with your glory all day long. 
Do not cast me off in the time of old age;
   do not forsake me when my strength is spent. 
For my enemies speak concerning me,
   and those who watch for my life consult together. 
They say, 'Pursue and seize that person
   whom God has forsaken,
   for there is no one to deliver.' 

O God, do not be far from me;
   O my God, make haste to help me! 
Let my accusers be put to shame and consumed;
   let those who seek to hurt me
   be covered with scorn and disgrace. 
But I will hope continually,
   and will praise you yet more and more. 
My mouth will tell of your righteous acts,
   of your deeds of salvation all day long,
   though their number is past my knowledge. 
I will come praising the mighty deeds of the Lord God,
   I will praise your righteousness, yours alone. 

O God, from my youth you have taught me,
   and I still proclaim your wondrous deeds. 
So even to old age and grey hairs,
   O God, do not forsake me,
until I proclaim your might
   to all the generations to come.*
Your power and your righteousness, O God,
   reach the high heavens. 

You who have done great things,
   O God, who is like you? 
You who have made me see many troubles and calamities
   will revive me again;
from the depths of the earth
   you will bring me up again. 
You will increase my honour,
   and comfort me once again. 

I will also praise you with the harp
   for your faithfulness, O my God;
I will sing praises to you with the lyre,
   O Holy One of Israel. 
My lips will shout for joy
   when I sing praises to you;
   my soul also, which you have rescued. 
All day long my tongue will talk of your righteous help,
for those who tried to do me harm
   have been put to shame, and disgraced.
Evening Psalms:  Psalm 74

Psalm 74

O God, why do you cast us off for ever?
   Why does your anger smoke against the sheep of your pasture? 
Remember your congregation, which you acquired long ago,
   which you redeemed to be the tribe of your heritage.
   Remember Mount Zion, where you came to dwell. 
Direct your steps to the perpetual ruins;
   the enemy has destroyed everything in the sanctuary. 

Your foes have roared within your holy place;
   they set up their emblems there. 
At the upper entrance they hacked
   the wooden trellis with axes.* 
And then, with hatchets and hammers,
   they smashed all its carved work. 
They set your sanctuary on fire;
   they desecrated the dwelling-place of your name,
   bringing it to the ground. 
They said to themselves, 'We will utterly subdue them';
   they burned all the meeting-places of God in the land. 

We do not see our emblems;
   there is no longer any prophet,
   and there is no one among us who knows how long. 
How long, O God, is the foe to scoff?
   Is the enemy to revile your name for ever? 
Why do you hold back your hand;
   why do you keep your hand in* your bosom? 

Yet God my King is from of old,
   working salvation in the earth. 
You divided the sea by your might;
   you broke the heads of the dragons in the waters. 
You crushed the heads of Leviathan;
   you gave him as food* for the creatures of the wilderness. 
You cut openings for springs and torrents;
   you dried up ever-flowing streams. 
Yours is the day, yours also the night;
   you established the luminaries* and the sun. 
You have fixed all the bounds of the earth;
   you made summer and winter. 

Remember this, O Lord, how the enemy scoffs,
   and an impious people reviles your name. 
Do not deliver the soul of your dove to the wild animals;
   do not forget the life of your poor for ever. 

Have regard for your* covenant,
   for the dark places of the land are full of the haunts of violence. 
Do not let the downtrodden be put to shame;
   let the poor and needy praise your name. 
Rise up, O God, plead your cause;
   remember how the impious scoff at you all day long. 
Do not forget the clamour of your foes,
   the uproar of your adversaries that goes up continually.

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