Thursday 30 March 2023 DAILY LECTIONARY

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Thu Mar 30 02:00:04 EDT 2023

Thursday 30 March 2023 

Email Evangelism, forward to a friend:
Jeremiah 26:1-16

At the beginning of the reign of King Jehoiakim son of Josiah of
Judah, this word came from the Lord: Thus says the Lord: Stand in the
court of the Lord’s house, and speak to all the cities of Judah that
come to worship in the house of the Lord; speak to them all the words
that I command you; do not hold back a word. It may be that they will
listen, all of them, and will turn from their evil way, that I may
change my mind about the disaster that I intend to bring on them
because of their evil doings. You shall say to them: Thus says the
Lord: If you will not listen to me, to walk in my law that I have set
before you, and to heed the words of my servants the prophets whom I
send to you urgently—though you have not heeded— then I will make
this house like Shiloh, and I will make this city a curse for all the
nations of the earth.

 The priests and the prophets and all the people heard Jeremiah
speaking these words in the house of the Lord. And when Jeremiah had
finished speaking all that the Lord had commanded him to speak to all
the people, then the priests and the prophets and all the people laid
hold of him, saying, ‘You shall die! Why have you prophesied in the
name of the Lord, saying, “This house shall be like Shiloh, and this
city shall be desolate, without inhabitant”?’ And all the people
gathered around Jeremiah in the house of the Lord.

 When the officials of Judah heard these things, they came up from
the king’s house to the house of the Lord and took their seat in the
entry of the New Gate of the house of the Lord. Then the priests and
the prophets said to the officials and to all the people, ‘This man
deserves the sentence of death because he has prophesied against this
city, as you have heard with your own ears.’

 Then Jeremiah spoke to all the officials and all the people, saying,
‘It is the Lord who sent me to prophesy against this house and this
city all the words you have heard. Now therefore amend your ways and
your doings, and obey the voice of the Lord your God, and the Lord
will change his mind about the disaster that he has pronounced against
you. But as for me, here I am in your hands. Do with me as seems good
and right to you. Only know for certain that if you put me to death,
you will be bringing innocent blood upon yourselves and upon this city
and its inhabitants, for in truth the Lord sent me to you to speak all
these words in your ears.’

 Then the officials and all the people said to the priests and the
prophets, ‘This man does not deserve the sentence of death, for he
has spoken to us in the name of the Lord our God.’
Romans 11:1-12

I ask, then, has God rejected his people? By no means! I myself am an
Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, a member of the tribe of Benjamin.
God has not rejected his people whom he foreknew. Do you not know what
the scripture says of Elijah, how he pleads with God against Israel?
‘Lord, they have killed your prophets, they have demolished your
altars; I alone am left, and they are seeking my life.’ But what is
the divine reply to him? ‘I have kept for myself seven thousand who
have not bowed the knee to Baal.’ So too at the present time there
is a remnant, chosen by grace. But if it is by grace, it is no longer
on the basis of works, otherwise grace would no longer be grace.*

 What then? Israel failed to obtain what it was seeking. The elect
obtained it, but the rest were hardened, as it is written,
‘God gave them a sluggish spirit,
   eyes that would not see
   and ears that would not hear,
down to this very day.’ 
And David says,
‘Let their table become a snare and a trap,
   a stumbling-block and a retribution for them; 
let their eyes be darkened so that they cannot see,
   and keep their backs for ever bent.’
 So I ask, have they stumbled so as to fall? By no means! But through
their stumbling* salvation has come to the Gentiles, so as to make
Israel* jealous. Now if their stumbling* means riches for the world,
and if their defeat means riches for Gentiles, how much more will
their full inclusion mean!
John 10:19-42

Again the Jews were divided because of these words. Many of them were
saying, ‘He has a demon and is out of his mind. Why listen to
him?’ Others were saying, ‘These are not the words of one who has
a demon. Can a demon open the eyes of the blind?’
 At that time the festival of the Dedication took place in Jerusalem.
It was winter, and Jesus was walking in the temple, in the portico of
Solomon. So the Jews gathered around him and said to him, ‘How long
will you keep us in suspense? If you are the Messiah,* tell us
plainly.’ Jesus answered, ‘I have told you, and you do not
believe. The works that I do in my Father’s name testify to me; but
you do not believe, because you do not belong to my sheep. My sheep
hear my voice. I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal
life, and they will never perish. No one will snatch them out of my
hand. What my Father has given me is greater than all else, and no one
can snatch it out of the Father’s hand.* The Father and I are

 The Jews took up stones again to stone him. Jesus replied, ‘I have
shown you many good works from the Father. For which of these are you
going to stone me?’ The Jews answered, ‘It is not for a good work
that we are going to stone you, but for blasphemy, because you, though
only a human being, are making yourself God.’ Jesus answered, ‘Is
it not written in your law,* “I said, you are gods”? If those to
whom the word of God came were called “gods”—and the scripture
cannot be annulled— can you say that the one whom the Father has
sanctified and sent into the world is blaspheming because I said, “I
am God’s Son”? If I am not doing the works of my Father, then do
not believe me. But if I do them, even though you do not believe me,
believe the works, so that you may know and understand* that the
Father is in me and I am in the Father.’ Then they tried to arrest
him again, but he escaped from their hands.

 He went away again across the Jordan to the place where John had
been baptizing earlier, and he remained there. Many came to him, and
they were saying, ‘John performed no sign, but everything that John
said about this man was true.’ And many believed in him there.
Morning Psalms: Psalm 131, 132

Psalm 131

O Lord, my heart is not lifted up,
   my eyes are not raised too high;
I do not occupy myself with things
   too great and too marvellous for me. 
But I have calmed and quieted my soul,
   like a weaned child with its mother;
   my soul is like the weaned child that is with me.* 

O Israel, hope in the Lord
   from this time on and for evermore.

Psalm 132

O Lord, remember in David’s favour
   all the hardships he endured; 
how he swore to the Lord
   and vowed to the Mighty One of Jacob, 
‘I will not enter my house
   or get into my bed; 
I will not give sleep to my eyes
   or slumber to my eyelids, 
until I find a place for the Lord,
   a dwelling-place for the Mighty One of Jacob.’ 

We heard of it in Ephrathah;
   we found it in the fields of Jaar. 
‘Let us go to his dwelling-place;
   let us worship at his footstool.’ 

Rise up, O Lord, and go to your resting-place,
   you and the ark of your might. 
Let your priests be clothed with righteousness,
   and let your faithful shout for joy. 
For your servant David’s sake
   do not turn away the face of your anointed one. 

The Lord swore to David a sure oath
   from which he will not turn back:
‘One of the sons of your body
   I will set on your throne. 
If your sons keep my covenant
   and my decrees that I shall teach them,
their sons also, for evermore,
   shall sit on your throne.’ 

For the Lord has chosen Zion;
   he has desired it for his habitation: 
‘This is my resting-place for ever;
   here I will reside, for I have desired it. 
I will abundantly bless its provisions;
   I will satisfy its poor with bread. 
Its priests I will clothe with salvation,
   and its faithful will shout for joy. 
There I will cause a horn to sprout up for David;
   I have prepared a lamp for my anointed one. 
His enemies I will clothe with disgrace,
   but on him, his crown will gleam.’
Evening 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.

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