Friday 25 August 2023 DAILY LECTIONARY

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Fri Aug 25 02:00:03 EDT 2023

Friday 25 August 2023

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2 Samuel 19:24-43

Mephibosheth* grandson of Saul came down to meet the king; he had not
taken care of his feet, or trimmed his beard, or washed his clothes,
from the day the king left until the day he came back in safety. When
he came from Jerusalem to meet the king, the king said to him, ‘Why
did you not go with me, Mephibosheth?’* He answered, ‘My lord, O
king, my servant deceived me; for your servant said to him, “Saddle
a donkey for me,* so that I may ride on it and go with the king.”
For your servant is lame. He has slandered your servant to my lord the
king. But my lord the king is like the angel of God; do therefore what
seems good to you. For all my father’s house were doomed to death
before my lord the king; but you set your servant among those who eat
at your table. What further right have I, then, to appeal to the
king?’ The king said to him, ‘Why speak any more of your affairs?
I have decided: you and Ziba shall divide the land.’ Mephibosheth*
said to the king, ‘Let him take it all, since my lord the king has
arrived home safely.’
 Now Barzillai the Gileadite had come down from Rogelim; he went on
with the king to the Jordan, to escort him over the Jordan. Barzillai
was a very aged man, eighty years old. He had provided the king with
food while he stayed at Mahanaim, for he was a very wealthy man. The
king said to Barzillai, ‘Come over with me, and I will provide for
you in Jerusalem at my side.’ But Barzillai said to the king, ‘How
many years have I still to live, that I should go up with the king to
Jerusalem? Today I am eighty years old; can I discern what is pleasant
and what is not? Can your servant taste what he eats or what he
drinks? Can I still listen to the voice of singing men and singing
women? Why then should your servant be an added burden to my lord the
king? Your servant will go a little way over the Jordan with the king.
Why should the king recompense me with such a reward? Please let your
servant return, so that I may die in my own town, near the graves of
my father and my mother. But here is your servant Chimham; let him go
over with my lord the king; and do for him whatever seems good to
you.’ The king answered, ‘Chimham shall go over with me, and I
will do for him whatever seems good to you; and all that you desire of
me I will do for you.’ Then all the people crossed over the Jordan,
and the king crossed over; the king kissed Barzillai and blessed him,
and he returned to his own home. The king went on to Gilgal, and
Chimham went on with him; all the people of Judah, and also half the
people of Israel, brought the king on his way.

 Then all the people of Israel came to the king, and said to him,
‘Why have our kindred the people of Judah stolen you away, and
brought the king and his household over the Jordan, and all David’s
men with him?’ All the people of Judah answered the people of
Israel, ‘Because the king is near of kin to us. Why then are you
angry over this matter? Have we eaten at all at the king’s expense?
Or has he given us any gift?’ But the people of Israel answered the
people of Judah, ‘We have ten shares in the king, and in David also
we have more than you. Why then did you despise us? Were we not the
first to speak of bringing back our king?’ But the words of the
people of Judah were fiercer than the words of the people of Israel.
Acts 24:24-25:12

Some days later when Felix came with his wife Drusilla, who was
Jewish, he sent for Paul and heard him speak concerning faith in
Christ Jesus. And as he discussed justice, self-control, and the
coming judgement, Felix became frightened and said, ‘Go away for the
present; when I have an opportunity, I will send for you.’ At the
same time he hoped that money would be given to him by Paul, and for
that reason he used to send for him very often and converse with him.

 After two years had passed, Felix was succeeded by Porcius Festus;
and since he wanted to grant the Jews a favour, Felix left Paul in
Three days after Festus had arrived in the province, he went up from
Caesarea to Jerusalem where the chief priests and the leaders of the
Jews gave him a report against Paul. They appealed to him and
requested, as a favour to them against Paul,* to have him transferred
to Jerusalem. They were, in fact, planning an ambush to kill him along
the way. Festus replied that Paul was being kept at Caesarea, and that
he himself intended to go there shortly. ‘So’, he said, ‘let
those of you who have the authority come down with me, and if there is
anything wrong about the man, let them accuse him.’

 After he had stayed among them for not more than eight or ten days,
he went down to Caesarea; the next day he took his seat on the
tribunal and ordered Paul to be brought. When he arrived, the Jews who
had gone down from Jerusalem surrounded him, bringing many serious
charges against him, which they could not prove. Paul said in his
defence, ‘I have in no way committed an offence against the law of
the Jews, or against the temple, or against the emperor.’ But
Festus, wishing to do the Jews a favour, asked Paul, ‘Do you wish to
go up to Jerusalem and be tried there before me on these charges?’
Paul said, ‘I am appealing to the emperor’s tribunal; this is
where I should be tried. I have done no wrong to the Jews, as you very
well know. Now if I am in the wrong and have committed something for
which I deserve to die, I am not trying to escape death; but if there
is nothing to their charges against me, no one can turn me over to
them. I appeal to the emperor.’ Then Festus, after he had conferred
with his council, replied, ‘You have appealed to the emperor; to the
emperor you will go.’
Mark 12:35-44
While Jesus was teaching in the temple, he said, ‘How can the
scribes say that the Messiah* is the son of David? David himself, by
the Holy Spirit, declared,
“The Lord said to my Lord,
‘Sit at my right hand,
   until I put your enemies under your feet.’ ” 
David himself calls him Lord; so how can he be his son?’ And the
large crowd was listening to him with delight.
 As he taught, he said, ‘Beware of the scribes, who like to walk
around in long robes, and to be greeted with respect in the
market-places, and to have the best seats in the synagogues and places
of honour at banquets! They devour widows’ houses and for the sake
of appearance say long prayers. They will receive the greater
 He sat down opposite the treasury, and watched the crowd putting
money into the treasury. Many rich people put in large sums. A poor
widow came and put in two small copper coins, which are worth a penny.
Then he called his disciples and said to them, ‘Truly I tell you,
this poor widow has put in more than all those who are contributing to
the treasury. For all of them have contributed out of their abundance;
but she out of her poverty has put in everything she had, all she had
to live on.’
Morning Psalms: Psalm 140, 142

Psalm 140

Deliver me, O Lord, from evildoers;
   protect me from those who are violent, 
who plan evil things in their minds
   and stir up wars continually. 
They make their tongue sharp as a snake’s,
   and under their lips is the venom of vipers.

Guard me, O Lord, from the hands of the wicked;
   protect me from the violent
   who have planned my downfall. 
The arrogant have hidden a trap for me,
   and with cords they have spread a net;*
   along the road they have set snares for me.

I say to the Lord, ‘You are my God;
   give ear, O Lord, to the voice of my supplications.’ 
O Lord, my Lord, my strong deliverer,
   you have covered my head in the day of battle. 
Do not grant, O Lord, the desires of the wicked;
   do not further their evil plot.*

Those who surround me lift up their heads;*
   let the mischief of their lips overwhelm them! 
Let burning coals fall on them!
   Let them be flung into pits, no more to rise! 
Do not let the slanderer be established in the land;
   let evil speedily hunt down the violent! 

I know that the Lord maintains the cause of the needy,
   and executes justice for the poor. 
Surely the righteous shall give thanks to your name;
   the upright shall live in your presence.

Psalm 142

With my voice I cry to the Lord;
   with my voice I make supplication to the Lord. 
I pour out my complaint before him;
   I tell my trouble before him. 
When my spirit is faint,
   you know my way. 

In the path where I walk
   they have hidden a trap for me. 
Look on my right hand and see—
   there is no one who takes notice of me;
no refuge remains to me;
   no one cares for me. 

I cry to you, O Lord;
   I say, ‘You are my refuge,
   my portion in the land of the living.’ 
Give heed to my cry,
   for I am brought very low. 

Save me from my persecutors,
   for they are too strong for me. 
Bring me out of prison,
   so that I may give thanks to your name.
The righteous will surround me,
   for you will deal bountifully with me.
Evening Psalms: Psalm 141, 143

Psalm 141

I call upon you, O Lord; come quickly to me;
   give ear to my voice when I call to you. 
Let my prayer be counted as incense before you,
   and the lifting up of my hands as an evening sacrifice. 

Set a guard over my mouth, O Lord;
   keep watch over the door of my lips. 
Do not turn my heart to any evil,
   to busy myself with wicked deeds
in company with those who work iniquity;
   do not let me eat of their delicacies. 

Let the righteous strike me;
   let the faithful correct me.
Never let the oil of the wicked anoint my head,*
   for my prayer is continually* against their wicked deeds. 
When they are given over to those who shall condemn them,
   then they shall learn that my words were pleasant. 
Like a rock that one breaks apart and shatters on the land,
   so shall their bones be strewn at the mouth of Sheol.* 

But my eyes are turned towards you, O God, my Lord;
   in you I seek refuge; do not leave me defenceless. 
Keep me from the trap that they have laid for me,
   and from the snares of evildoers. 
Let the wicked fall into their own nets,
   while I alone escape.

Psalm 143

Hear my prayer, O Lord;
   give ear to my supplications in your faithfulness;
   answer me in your righteousness. 
Do not enter into judgement with your servant,
   for no one living is righteous before you. 

For the enemy has pursued me,
   crushing my life to the ground,
   making me sit in darkness like those long dead. 
Therefore my spirit faints within me;
   my heart within me is appalled. 

I remember the days of old,
   I think about all your deeds,
   I meditate on the works of your hands. 
I stretch out my hands to you;
   my soul thirsts for you like a parched land.

Answer me quickly, O Lord;
   my spirit fails.
Do not hide your face from me,
   or I shall be like those who go down to the Pit. 
Let me hear of your steadfast love in the morning,
   for in you I put my trust.
Teach me the way I should go,
   for to you I lift up my soul. 

Save me, O Lord, from my enemies;
   I have fled to you for refuge.* 
Teach me to do your will,
   for you are my God.
Let your good spirit lead me
   on a level path. 

For your name’s sake, O Lord, preserve my life.
   In your righteousness bring me out of trouble. 
In your steadfast love cut off my enemies,
   and destroy all my adversaries,
   for I am your servant.

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