Friday 17 December 2021 DAILY LECTIONARY

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Fri Dec 17 02:00:04 EST 2021

Friday 17 December 2021 

Email Evangelism, forward to a friend:
Zechariah 7:8-8:8

The word of the Lord came to Zechariah, saying: Thus says the Lord of
hosts: Render true judgements, show kindness and mercy to one another;
do not oppress the widow, the orphan, the alien, or the poor; and do
not devise evil in your hearts against one another. But they refused
to listen, and turned a stubborn shoulder, and stopped their ears in
order not to hear. They made their hearts adamant in order not to hear
the law and the words that the Lord of hosts had sent by his spirit
through the former prophets. Therefore great wrath came from the Lord
of hosts. Just as, when I* called, they would not hear, so, when they
called, I would not hear, says the Lord of hosts, and I scattered them
with a whirlwind among all the nations that they had not known. Thus
the land they left was desolate, so that no one went to and fro, and a
pleasant land was made desolate.
The word of the Lord of hosts came to me, saying: Thus says the Lord
of hosts: I am jealous for Zion with great jealousy, and I am jealous
for her with great wrath. Thus says the Lord: I will return to Zion,
and will dwell in the midst of Jerusalem; Jerusalem shall be called
the faithful city, and the mountain of the Lord of hosts shall be
called the holy mountain. Thus says the Lord of hosts: Old men and old
women shall again sit in the streets of Jerusalem, each with staff in
hand because of their great age. And the streets of the city shall be
full of boys and girls playing in its streets. Thus says the Lord of
hosts: Even though it seems impossible to the remnant of this people
in these days, should it also seem impossible to me, says the Lord of
hosts? Thus says the Lord of hosts: I will save my people from the
east country and from the west country; and I will bring them to live
in Jerusalem. They shall be my people and I will be their God, in
faithfulness and in righteousness.
Revelation 5:6-14

Then I saw between the throne and the four living creatures and among
the elders a Lamb standing as if it had been slaughtered, having seven
horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into
all the earth. He went and took the scroll from the right hand of the
one who was seated on the throne. When he had taken the scroll, the
four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell before the Lamb,
each holding a harp and golden bowls full of incense, which are the
prayers of the saints. They sing a new song:
‘You are worthy to take the scroll
   and to open its seals,
for you were slaughtered and by your blood you ransomed for God
   saints from* every tribe and language and people and nation; 
you have made them to be a kingdom and priests serving* our God,
   and they will reign on earth.’

 Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels surrounding the
throne and the living creatures and the elders; they numbered myriads
of myriads and thousands of thousands, singing with full voice,
‘Worthy is the Lamb that was slaughtered
to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might
and honour and glory and blessing!’ 
Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth
and in the sea, and all that is in them, singing,
‘To the one seated on the throne and to the Lamb
be blessing and honour and glory and might
for ever and ever!’ 
And the four living creatures said, ‘Amen!’ And the elders fell
down and worshipped.
Matthew 25:14-30

‘For it is as if a man, going on a journey, summoned his slaves and
entrusted his property to them; to one he gave five talents,* to
another two, to another one, to each according to his ability. Then he
went away. The one who had received the five talents went off at once
and traded with them, and made five more talents. In the same way, the
one who had the two talents made two more talents. But the one who had
received the one talent went off and dug a hole in the ground and hid
his master’s money. After a long time the master of those slaves
came and settled accounts with them. Then the one who had received the
five talents came forward, bringing five more talents, saying,
“Master, you handed over to me five talents; see, I have made five
more talents.” His master said to him, “Well done, good and
trustworthy slave; you have been trustworthy in a few things, I will
put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your
master.” And the one with the two talents also came forward, saying,
“Master, you handed over to me two talents; see, I have made two
more talents.” His master said to him, “Well done, good and
trustworthy slave; you have been trustworthy in a few things, I will
put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your
master.” Then the one who had received the one talent also came
forward, saying, “Master, I knew that you were a harsh man, reaping
where you did not sow, and gathering where you did not scatter seed;
so I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here
you have what is yours.” But his master replied, “You wicked and
lazy slave! You knew, did you, that I reap where I did not sow, and
gather where I did not scatter? Then you ought to have invested my
money with the bankers, and on my return I would have received what
was my own with interest. So take the talent from him, and give it to
the one with the ten talents. For to all those who have, more will be
given, and they will have an abundance; but from those who have
nothing, even what they have will be taken away. As for this worthless
slave, throw him into the outer darkness, where there will be weeping
and gnashing of teeth.”
Morning Psalms: Psalm 40, 54

Psalm 40

I waited patiently for the Lord;
   he inclined to me and heard my cry. 
He drew me up from the desolate pit,*
   out of the miry bog,
and set my feet upon a rock,
   making my steps secure. 
He put a new song in my mouth,
   a song of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear,
   and put their trust in the Lord. 

Happy are those who make
   the Lord their trust,
who do not turn to the proud,
   to those who go astray after false gods. 
You have multiplied, O Lord my God,
   your wondrous deeds and your thoughts towards us;
   none can compare with you.
Were I to proclaim and tell of them,
   they would be more than can be counted. 

Sacrifice and offering you do not desire,
   but you have given me an open ear.*
Burnt-offering and sin-offering
   you have not required. 
Then I said, ‘Here I am;
   in the scroll of the book it is written of me.* 
I delight to do your will, O my God;
   your law is within my heart.’ 

I have told the glad news of deliverance
   in the great congregation;
see, I have not restrained my lips,
   as you know, O Lord. 
I have not hidden your saving help within my heart,
   I have spoken of your faithfulness and your salvation;
I have not concealed your steadfast love and your faithfulness
   from the great congregation. 

Do not, O Lord, withhold
   your mercy from me;
let your steadfast love and your faithfulness
   keep me safe for ever. 
For evils have encompassed me
   without number;
my iniquities have overtaken me,
   until I cannot see;
they are more than the hairs of my head,
   and my heart fails me. 

Be pleased, O Lord, to deliver me;
   O Lord, make haste to help me. 
Let all those be put to shame and confusion
   who seek to snatch away my life;
let those be turned back and brought to dishonour
   who desire my hurt. 
Let those be appalled because of their shame
   who say to me, ‘Aha, Aha!’ 

But may all who seek you
   rejoice and be glad in you;
may those who love your salvation
   say continually, ‘Great is the Lord!’ 
As for me, I am poor and needy,
   but the Lord takes thought for me.
You are my help and my deliverer;
   do not delay, O my God.

Psalm 54

Save me, O God, by your name,
   and vindicate me by your might. 
Hear my prayer, O God;
   give ear to the words of my mouth. 

For the insolent have risen against me,
   the ruthless seek my life;
   they do not set God before them.

But surely, God is my helper;
   the Lord is the upholder of* my life. 
He will repay my enemies for their evil.
   In your faithfulness, put an end to them. 

With a freewill-offering I will sacrifice to you;
   I will give thanks to your name, O Lord, for it is good. 
For he has delivered me from every trouble,
   and my eye has looked in triumph on my enemies.
Evening Psalms: Psalm 51

Psalm 51

Have mercy on me, O God,
   according to your steadfast love;
according to your abundant mercy
   blot out my transgressions. 
Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,
   and cleanse me from my sin. 

For I know my transgressions,
   and my sin is ever before me. 
Against you, you alone, have I sinned,
   and done what is evil in your sight,
so that you are justified in your sentence
   and blameless when you pass judgement. 
Indeed, I was born guilty,
   a sinner when my mother conceived me. 

You desire truth in the inward being;*
   therefore teach me wisdom in my secret heart. 
Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
   wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. 
Let me hear joy and gladness;
   let the bones that you have crushed rejoice. 
Hide your face from my sins,
   and blot out all my iniquities. 

Create in me a clean heart, O God,
   and put a new and right* spirit within me. 
Do not cast me away from your presence,
   and do not take your holy spirit from me. 
Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
   and sustain in me a willing* spirit. 

Then I will teach transgressors your ways,
   and sinners will return to you. 
Deliver me from bloodshed, O God,
   O God of my salvation,
   and my tongue will sing aloud of your deliverance. 

O Lord, open my lips,
   and my mouth will declare your praise. 
For you have no delight in sacrifice;
   if I were to give a burnt-offering, you would not be pleased. 
The sacrifice acceptable to God* is a broken spirit;
   a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise. 

Do good to Zion in your good pleasure;
   rebuild the walls of Jerusalem, 
then you will delight in right sacrifices,
   in burnt-offerings and whole burnt-offerings;
   then bulls will be offered on your altar.

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