Friday 25 January 2008 DAILY LECTIONARY

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Fri Jan 25 02:00:00 EST 2008

Friday 25 January 2008 

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Genesis 11:27-12:8

Now these are the descendants of Terah. Terah was the father of Abram,
Nahor, and Haran; and Haran was the father of Lot. Haran died before his
father Terah in the land of his birth, in Ur of the Chaldeans. Abram and
Nahor took wives; the name of Abram's wife was Sarai, and the name of
Nahor's wife was Milcah. She was the daughter of Haran the father of
Milcah and Iscah. Now Sarai was barren; she had no child.

 Terah took his son Abram and his grandson Lot son of Haran, and his
daughter-in-law Sarai, his son Abram's wife, and they went out together
from Ur of the Chaldeans to go into the land of Canaan; but when they
came to Haran, they settled there. The days of Terah were two hundred
and five years; and Terah died in Haran.
Now the Lord said to Abram, 'Go from your country and your kindred and
your father's house to the land that I will show you. I will make of you
a great nation, and I will bless you, and make your name great, so that
you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and the one
who curses you I will curse; and in you all the families of the earth
shall be blessed.'*

 So Abram went, as the Lord had told him; and Lot went with him. Abram
was seventy-five years old when he departed from Haran. Abram took his
wife Sarai and his brother's son Lot, and all the possessions that they
had gathered, and the persons whom they had acquired in Haran; and they
set forth to go to the land of Canaan. When they had come to the land of
Canaan, Abram passed through the land to the place at Shechem, to the
oak* of Moreh. At that time the Canaanites were in the land. Then the
Lord appeared to Abram, and said, 'To your offspring* I will give this
land.' So he built there an altar to the Lord, who had appeared to him.
>From there he moved on to the hill country on the east of Bethel, and
pitched his tent, with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east; and there
he built an altar to the Lord and invoked the name of the Lord.
Hebrews 7:1-17

This 'King Melchizedek of Salem, priest of the Most High God, met
Abraham as he was returning from defeating the kings and blessed him';
and to him Abraham apportioned 'one-tenth of everything'. His name, in
the first place, means 'king of righteousness'; next he is also king of
Salem, that is, 'king of peace'. Without father, without mother, without
genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but
resembling the Son of God, he remains a priest for ever.

 See how great he is! Even* Abraham the patriarch gave him a tenth of
the spoils. And those descendants of Levi who receive the priestly
office have a commandment in the law to collect tithes* from the people,
that is, from their kindred,* though these also are descended from
Abraham. But this man, who does not belong to their ancestry, collected
tithes* from Abraham and blessed him who had received the promises. It
is beyond dispute that the inferior is blessed by the superior. In the
one case, tithes are received by those who are mortal; in the other, by
one of whom it is testified that he lives. One might even say that Levi
himself, who receives tithes, paid tithes through Abraham, for he was
still in the loins of his ancestor when Melchizedek met him.
 Now if perfection had been attainable through the levitical
priesthood-for the people received the law under this priesthood-what
further need would there have been to speak of another priest arising
according to the order of Melchizedek, rather than one according to the
order of Aaron? For when there is a change in the priesthood, there is
necessarily a change in the law as well. Now the one of whom these
things are spoken belonged to another tribe, from which no one has ever
served at the altar. For it is evident that our Lord was descended from
Judah, and in connection with that tribe Moses said nothing about

 It is even more obvious when another priest arises, resembling
Melchizedek, one who has become a priest, not through a legal
requirement concerning physical descent, but through the power of an
indestructible life. For it is attested of him,
'You are a priest for ever,
   according to the order of Melchizedek.'
John 4:16-26

Jesus said to her, 'Go, call your husband, and come back.' The woman
answered him, 'I have no husband.' Jesus said to her, 'You are right in
saying, "I have no husband"; for you have had five husbands, and the one
you have now is not your husband. What you have said is true!' The woman
said to him, 'Sir, I see that you are a prophet. Our ancestors
worshipped on this mountain, but you* say that the place where people
must worship is in Jerusalem.' Jesus said to her, 'Woman, believe me,
the hour is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this
mountain nor in Jerusalem. You worship what you do not know; we worship
what we know, for salvation is from the Jews. But the hour is coming,
and is now here, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in
spirit and truth, for the Father seeks such as these to worship him. God
is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.'
The woman said to him, 'I know that Messiah is coming' (who is called
Christ). 'When he comes, he will proclaim all things to us.' Jesus said
to her, 'I am he,* the one who is speaking to you.'
Morning Psalms:  Psalm 31

Psalm 31

In you, O Lord, I seek refuge;
   do not let me ever be put to shame;
   in your righteousness deliver me. 
Incline your ear to me;
   rescue me speedily.
Be a rock of refuge for me,
   a strong fortress to save me. 

You are indeed my rock and my fortress;
   for your name's sake lead me and guide me, 
take me out of the net that is hidden for me,
   for you are my refuge. 
Into your hand I commit my spirit;
   you have redeemed me, O Lord, faithful God. 

You hate* those who pay regard to worthless idols,
   but I trust in the Lord. 
I will exult and rejoice in your steadfast love,
   because you have seen my affliction;
   you have taken heed of my adversities, 
and have not delivered me into the hand of the enemy;
   you have set my feet in a broad place. 

Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am in distress;
   my eye wastes away from grief,
   my soul and body also. 
For my life is spent with sorrow,
   and my years with sighing;
my strength fails because of my misery,*
   and my bones waste away. 

I am the scorn of all my adversaries,
   a horror* to my neighbours,
an object of dread to my acquaintances;
   those who see me in the street flee from me. 
I have passed out of mind like one who is dead;
   I have become like a broken vessel. 
For I hear the whispering of many-
   terror all around!-
as they scheme together against me,
   as they plot to take my life. 

But I trust in you, O Lord;
   I say, 'You are my God.' 
My times are in your hand;
   deliver me from the hand of my enemies and persecutors. 
Let your face shine upon your servant;
   save me in your steadfast love. 
Do not let me be put to shame, O Lord,
   for I call on you;
let the wicked be put to shame;
   let them go dumbfounded to Sheol. 
Let the lying lips be stilled
   that speak insolently against the righteous
   with pride and contempt. 

O how abundant is your goodness
   that you have laid up for those who fear you,
and accomplished for those who take refuge in you,
   in the sight of everyone! 
In the shelter of your presence you hide them
   from human plots;
you hold them safe under your shelter
   from contentious tongues. 

Blessed be the Lord,
   for he has wondrously shown his steadfast love to me
   when I was beset as a city under siege. 
I had said in my alarm,
   'I am driven far* from your sight.'
But you heard my supplications
   when I cried out to you for help. 

Love the Lord, all you his saints.
   The Lord preserves the faithful,
   but abundantly repays the one who acts haughtily. 
Be strong, and let your heart take courage,
   all you who wait for the Lord.
Evening Psalms:  Psalm 35

Psalm 35

Contend, O Lord, with those who contend with me;
   fight against those who fight against me! 
Take hold of shield and buckler,
   and rise up to help me! 
Draw the spear and javelin
   against my pursuers;
say to my soul,
   'I am your salvation.' 

Let them be put to shame and dishonour
   who seek after my life.
Let them be turned back and confounded
   who devise evil against me. 
Let them be like chaff before the wind,
   with the angel of the Lord driving them on. 
Let their way be dark and slippery,
   with the angel of the Lord pursuing them. 

For without cause they hid their net* for me;
   without cause they dug a pit* for my life. 
Let ruin come on them unawares.
And let the net that they hid ensnare them;
   let them fall in it-to their ruin. 

Then my soul shall rejoice in the Lord,
   exulting in his deliverance. 
All my bones shall say,
   'O Lord, who is like you?
You deliver the weak
   from those too strong for them,
   the weak and needy from those who despoil them.' 

Malicious witnesses rise up;
   they ask me about things I do not know. 
They repay me evil for good;
   my soul is forlorn. 
But as for me, when they were sick,
   I wore sackcloth;
   I afflicted myself with fasting.
I prayed with head bowed* on my bosom, 
   as though I grieved for a friend or a brother;
I went about as one who laments for a mother,
   bowed down and in mourning. 

But at my stumbling they gathered in glee,
   they gathered together against me;
ruffians whom I did not know
   tore at me without ceasing; 
they impiously mocked more and more,*
   gnashing at me with their teeth. 

How long, O Lord, will you look on?
   Rescue me from their ravages,
   my life from the lions! 
Then I will thank you in the great congregation;
   in the mighty throng I will praise you. 

Do not let my treacherous enemies rejoice over me,
   or those who hate me without cause wink the eye. 
For they do not speak peace,
   but they conceive deceitful words
   against those who are quiet in the land. 
They open wide their mouths against me;
   they say, 'Aha, Aha,
   our eyes have seen it.' 

You have seen, O Lord; do not be silent!
   O Lord, do not be far from me! 
Wake up! Bestir yourself for my defence,
   for my cause, my God and my Lord! 
Vindicate me, O Lord, my God,
   according to your righteousness,
   and do not let them rejoice over me. 
Do not let them say to themselves,
   'Aha, we have our heart's desire.'
Do not let them say, 'We have swallowed you* up.' 

Let all those who rejoice at my calamity
   be put to shame and confusion;
let those who exalt themselves against me
   be clothed with shame and dishonour. 

Let those who desire my vindication
   shout for joy and be glad,
   and say evermore,
'Great is the Lord,
   who delights in the welfare of his servant.' 
Then my tongue shall tell of your righteousness
   and of your praise all day long.

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