Friday 15 September 2023 DAILY LECTIONARY

info at info at
Fri Sep 15 02:00:03 EDT 2023

Friday 15 September 2023

Email Evangelism, forward to a friend:
1 Kings 18:20-40

So Ahab sent to all the Israelites, and assembled the prophets at
Mount Carmel. Elijah then came near to all the people, and said,
‘How long will you go limping with two different opinions? If the
Lord is God, follow him; but if Baal, then follow him.’ The people
did not answer him a word. Then Elijah said to the people, ‘I, even
I only, am left a prophet of the Lord; but Baal’s prophets number
four hundred and fifty. Let two bulls be given to us; let them choose
one bull for themselves, cut it in pieces, and lay it on the wood, but
put no fire to it; I will prepare the other bull and lay it on the
wood, but put no fire to it. Then you call on the name of your god and
I will call on the name of the Lord; the god who answers by fire is
indeed God.’ All the people answered, ‘Well spoken!’ Then Elijah
said to the prophets of Baal, ‘Choose for yourselves one bull and
prepare it first, for you are many; then call on the name of your god,
but put no fire to it.’ So they took the bull that was given them,
prepared it, and called on the name of Baal from morning until noon,
crying, ‘O Baal, answer us!’ But there was no voice, and no
answer. They limped about the altar that they had made. At noon Elijah
mocked them, saying, ‘Cry aloud! Surely he is a god; either he is
meditating, or he has wandered away, or he is on a journey, or perhaps
he is asleep and must be awakened.’ Then they cried aloud and, as
was their custom, they cut themselves with swords and lances until the
blood gushed out over them. As midday passed, they raved on until the
time of the offering of the oblation, but there was no voice, no
answer, and no response.

 Then Elijah said to all the people, ‘Come closer to me’; and all
the people came closer to him. First he repaired the altar of the Lord
that had been thrown down; Elijah took twelve stones, according to the
number of the tribes of the sons of Jacob, to whom the word of the
Lord came, saying, ‘Israel shall be your name’; with the stones he
built an altar in the name of the Lord. Then he made a trench around
the altar, large enough to contain two measures of seed. Next he put
the wood in order, cut the bull in pieces, and laid it on the wood. He
said, ‘Fill four jars with water and pour it on the burnt-offering
and on the wood.’ Then he said, ‘Do it a second time’; and they
did it a second time. Again he said, ‘Do it a third time’; and
they did it a third time, so that the water ran all round the altar,
and filled the trench also with water.

 At the time of the offering of the oblation, the prophet Elijah came
near and said, ‘O Lord, God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, let it be
known this day that you are God in Israel, that I am your servant, and
that I have done all these things at your bidding. Answer me, O Lord,
answer me, so that this people may know that you, O Lord, are God, and
that you have turned their hearts back.’ Then the fire of the Lord
fell and consumed the burnt-offering, the wood, the stones, and the
dust, and even licked up the water that was in the trench. When all
the people saw it, they fell on their faces and said, ‘The Lord
indeed is God; the Lord indeed is God.’ Elijah said to them,
‘Seize the prophets of Baal; do not let one of them escape.’ Then
they seized them; and Elijah brought them down to the Wadi Kishon, and
killed them there.
Philippians 3:1-16

Finally, my brothers and sisters,* rejoice* in the Lord. 

To write the same things to you is not troublesome to me, and for you
it is a safeguard.

 Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of those who
mutilate the flesh!* For it is we who are the circumcision, who
worship in the Spirit of God* and boast in Christ Jesus and have no
confidence in the flesh— even though I, too, have reason for
confidence in the flesh.

If anyone else has reason to be confident in the flesh, I have more:
circumcised on the eighth day, a member of the people of Israel, of
the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew born of Hebrews; as to the law, a
Pharisee; as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to righteousness
under the law, blameless.

 Yet whatever gains I had, these I have come to regard as loss
because of Christ. More than that, I regard everything as loss because
of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake
I have suffered the loss of all things, and I regard them as rubbish,
in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a
righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but one that comes
through faith in Christ,* the righteousness from God based on faith. I
want to know Christ* and the power of his resurrection and the sharing
of his sufferings by becoming like him in his death, if somehow I may
attain the resurrection from the dead.
 Not that I have already obtained this or have already reached the
goal;* but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made
me his own. Beloved,* I do not consider that I have made it my own;*
but this one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining
forward to what lies ahead, I press on towards the goal for the prize
of the heavenly* call of God in Christ Jesus. Let those of us then who
are mature be of the same mind; and if you think differently about
anything, this too God will reveal to you. Only let us hold fast to
what we have attained.
Matthew 3:1-12
In those days John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness of Judea,
proclaiming, ‘Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.’*
This is the one of whom the prophet Isaiah spoke when he said,
‘The voice of one crying out in the wilderness:
“Prepare the way of the Lord,
   make his paths straight.” ’ 
Now John wore clothing of camel’s hair with a leather belt around
his waist, and his food was locusts and wild honey. Then the people of
Jerusalem and all Judea were going out to him, and all the region
along the Jordan, and they were baptized by him in the river Jordan,
confessing their sins.

 But when he saw many Pharisees and Sadducees coming for baptism, he
said to them, ‘You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the
wrath to come? Bear fruit worthy of repentance. Do not presume to say
to yourselves, “We have Abraham as our ancestor”; for I tell you,
God is able from these stones to raise up children to Abraham. Even
now the axe is lying at the root of the trees; every tree therefore
that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.

 ‘I baptize you with* water for repentance, but one who is more
powerful than I is coming after me; I am not worthy to carry his
sandals. He will baptize you with* the Holy Spirit and fire. His
winnowing-fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing-floor
and will gather his wheat into the granary; but the chaff he will burn
with unquenchable fire.’
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.

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <>

More information about the DailyLectionary mailing list