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Daily Readings for Wednesday, December 24, 2014


Morning Psalm 50

1The mighty one, God the LORD,

speaks and summons the earth

from the rising of the sun to its setting.

2Out of Zion, the perfection of beauty,

God shines forth.


3Our God comes and does not keep silence,

before him is a devouring fire,

and a mighty tempest all around him.

4He calls to the heavens above

and to the earth, that he may judge his people:

5"Gather to me my faithful ones,

who made a covenant with me by sacrifice!"

6The heavens declare his righteousness,

for God himself is judge. Selah


7"Hear, O my people, and I will speak,

O Israel, I will testify against you.

I am God, your God.

8Not for your sacrifices do I rebuke you;

your burnt offerings are continually before me.

9I will not accept a bull from your house,

or goats from your folds.

10For every wild animal of the forest is mine,

the cattle on a thousand hills.

11I know all the birds of the air,

and all that moves in the field is mine.


12"If I were hungry, I would not tell you,

for the world and all that is in it is mine.

13Do I eat the flesh of bulls,

or drink the blood of goats?

14Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving,

and pay your vows to the Most High.

15Call on me in the day of trouble;

I will deliver you, and you shall glorify me."


16But to the wicked God says:

"What right have you to recite my statutes,

or take my covenant on your lips?

17For you hate discipline,

and you cast my words behind you.

18You make friends with a thief when you see one,

and you keep company with adulterers.


19"You give your mouth free rein for evil,

and your tongue frames deceit.

20You sit and speak against your kin;

you slander your own mother's child.

21These things you have done and I have been silent;

you thought that I was one just like yourself.

But now I rebuke you, and lay the charge before you.


22"Mark this, then, you who forget God,

or I will tear you apart, and there will be no one to deliver.

23Those who bring thanksgiving as their sacrifice honor me;

to those who go the right way

I will show the salvation of God."

Morning Psalm 147:1-11

1   Praise the Lord!
          How good it is to sing praises to our God;
          for he is gracious, and a song of praise is fitting.
2   The Lord builds up Jerusalem;
          he gathers the outcasts of Israel.
3   He heals the brokenhearted,
          and binds up their wounds.
4   He determines the number of the stars;
          he gives to all of them their names.
5   Great is our Lord, and abundant in power;
          his understanding is beyond measure.
6   The Lord lifts up the downtrodden;
          he casts the wicked to the ground.


7   Sing to the Lord with thanksgiving;
          make melody to our God on the lyre.
8   He covers the heavens with clouds,
          prepares rain for the earth,
          makes grass grow on the hills.
9   He gives to the animals their food,
          and to the young ravens when they cry.
10  His delight is not in the strength of the horse,
          nor his pleasure in the speed of a runner;
11  but the Lord takes pleasure in those who fear him,
          in those who hope in his steadfast love.

First Reading Isaiah 35:1-10

1The wilderness and the dry land shall be glad, the desert shall rejoice and blossom; like the crocus 2it shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice with joy and singing. The glory of Lebanon shall be given to it, the majesty of Carmel and Sharon. They shall see the glory of the LORD, the majesty of our God. 3Strengthen the weak hands, and make firm the feeble knees. 4Say to those who are of a fearful heart, "Be strong, do not fear! Here is your God. He will come with vengeance, with terrible recompense. He will come and save you."

5Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf unstopped; 6then the lame shall leap like a deer, and the tongue of the speechless sing for joy. For waters shall break forth in the wilderness, and streams in the desert; 7the burning sand shall become a pool, and the thirsty ground springs of water; the haunt of jackals shall become a swamp, the grass shall become reeds and rushes.

8A highway shall be there, and it shall be called the Holy Way; the unclean shall not travel on it, but it shall be for God's people; no traveler, not even fools, shall go astray. 9No lion shall be there, nor shall any ravenous beast come up on it; they shall not be found there, but the redeemed shall walk there. 10And the ransomed of the LORD shall return, and come to Zion with singing; everlasting joy shall be upon their heads; they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.

Second Reading Revelation 22:12-17, 21

12"See, I am coming soon; my reward is with me, to repay according to everyone's work. 13I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end."

14Blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they will have the right to the tree of life and may enter the city by the gates. 15Outside are the dogs and sorcerers and fornicators and murderers and idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.

16"It is I, Jesus, who sent my angel to you with this testimony for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star." 17The Spirit and the bride say, "Come." And let everyone who hears say, "Come." And let everyone who is thirsty come. Let anyone who wishes take the water of life as a gift.

21The grace of the Lord Jesus be with all the saints. Amen.

Gospel Reading Luke 1:67-80

67Then his father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke this prophecy: 68"Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for he has looked favorably on his people and redeemed them. 69He has raised up a mighty savior for us in the house of his servant David, 70as he spoke through the mouth of his holy prophets from of old, 71that we would be saved from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us. 72Thus he has shown the mercy promised to our ancestors, and has remembered his holy covenant, 73the oath that he swore to our ancestor Abraham, to grant us 74that we, being rescued from the hands of our enemies, might serve him without fear, 75in holiness and righteousness before him all our days. 76And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High; for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways, 77to give knowledge of salvation to his people by the forgiveness of their sins. 78By the tender mercy of our God, the dawn from on high will break upon us, 79to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace."

80The child grew and became strong in spirit, and he was in the wilderness until the day he appeared publicly to Israel.

Christmas Eve Psalm Psalm 132

1O LORD, remember in David's favor
     all the hardships he endured;
2how he swore to the LORD
     and vowed to the Mighty One of Jacob,
3"I will not enter my house
     or get into my bed;
4I will not give sleep to my eyes
     or slumber to my eyelids,
5until I find a place for the LORD,
     a dwelling-place for the Mighty One of Jacob."

6We heard of it in Ephrathah;
     we found it in the fields of Jaar.
7"Let us go to his dwelling place;
     let us worship at his footstool."

8Rise up, O LORD, and go to your resting-place,
     you and the ark of your might.
9Let your priests be clothed with righteousness,
     and let your faithful shout for joy.
10For your servant David's sake
     do not turn away the face of your anointed one.

11The 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.

12If your sons keep my covenant
     and my decrees that I shall teach them,
their sons also, forevermore,
     shall sit on your throne."

13For the LORD has chosen Zion;
     he has desired it for his habitation:
14"This is my resting place forever;
     here I will reside, for I have desired it.
15I will abundantly bless its provisions;
     I will satisfy its poor with bread.
16Its priests I will clothe with salvation,
     and its faithful will shout for joy.
17There I will cause a horn to sprout up for David;
     I have prepared a lamp for my anointed one.
18His enemies I will clothe with disgrace,
     but on him, his crown will gleam."

Christmas Eve Psalm Psalm 114

1When Israel went out from Egypt,
     the house of Jacob from a people of strange language,
2Judah became God's sanctuary,
     Israel his dominion.

3The sea looked and fled;
     Jordan turned back.
4The mountains skipped like rams,
     the hills like lambs.

5Why is it, O sea, that you flee?
     O Jordan, that you turn back?
6O mountains, that you skip like rams?
     O hills, like lambs?

7Tremble, O earth, at the presence of the LORD,
     at the presence of the God of Jacob,
8who turns the rock into a pool of water,
     the flint into a spring of water.

Christmas Eve Reading Isaiah 59:15b-21

15b The Lord saw it, and it displeased him
          that there was no justice.
16  He saw that there was no one,
          and was appalled that there was      no one to intervene;
     so his own arm brought him victory,
          and his righteousness upheld him.
17  He put on righteousness like a breastplate,
          and a helmet of salvation on his head;
     he put on garments of vengeance for clothing,
          and wrapped himself in fury as in a mantle.
18 According to their deeds, so will he repay;
          wrath to his adversaries, requital to his enemies;
          to the coastlands he will render requital.

19  So those in the west shall fear the name of the Lord,
          and those in the east, his glory;
     for he will come like a pent-up stream
          that the wind of the Lord drives on.

20  And he will come to Zion as Redeemer,
          to those in Jacob who turn from transgression, says the Lord.
21And as for me, this is my covenant with them, says the Lord: my spirit that is upon you, and my words that I have put in your mouth, shall not depart out of your mouth, or out of the mouths of your children, or out of the mouths of your children’s children, says the Lord, from now on and for ever.

Cristmas Eve Reading Philippians 2:5-11

5Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus,
6   who, though he was in the form of God,
          did not regard equality with God
          as something to be exploited,
7   but emptied himself,
          taking the form of a slave,
          being born in human likeness.
     And being found in human form,
8        he humbled himself
          and became obedient to the point of death —
          even death on a cross.

9   Therefore God also highly exalted him
          and gave him the name
          that is above every name,
10  so that at the name of Jesus
          every knee should bend,
           in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
11  and every tongue should confess
          that Jesus Christ is Lord,
          to the glory of God the Father.

Evening Psalm 53

1Fools say in their hearts, "There is no God."

They are corrupt, they commit abominable acts;

there is no one who does good.


2God looks down from heaven on humankind

to see if there are any who are wise,

who seek after God.


3They have all fallen away, they are all alike perverse;

there is no one who does good,

no, not one.


4Have they no knowledge, those evildoers,

who eat up my people as they eat bread,

and do not call upon God?


5There they shall be in great terror,

in terror such as has not been.

For God will scatter the bones of the ungodly;

they will be put to shame, for God has rejected them.


6O that deliverance for Israel would come from Zion!

When God restores the fortunes of his people,

Jacob will rejoice; Israel will be glad.

Evening Psalm 17

1Hear a just cause, O LORD; attend to my cry;

give ear to my prayer from lips free of deceit.

2From you let my vindication come;

let your eyes see the right.


3If you try my heart, if you visit me by night,

if you test me, you will find no wickedness in me;

my mouth does not transgress.

4As for what others do, by the word of your lips

I have avoided the ways of the violent.

5My steps have held fast to your paths;

my feet have not slipped.


6I call upon you, for you will answer me, O God;

incline your ear to me, hear my words.

7Wondrously show your steadfast love,

O savior of those who seek refuge

from their adversaries at your right hand.


8Guard me as the apple of the eye;

hide me in the shadow of your wings,

9from the wicked who despoil me,

my deadly enemies who surround me.

10They close their hearts to pity;

with their mouths they speak arrogantly.

11They track me down; now they surround me;

they set their eyes to cast me to the ground.

12They are like a lion eager to tear,

like a young lion lurking in ambush.


13Rise up, O LORD, confront them, overthrow them!

By your sword deliver my life from the wicked,

14from mortals — by your hand, O LORD —

from mortals whose portion in life is in this world.

May their bellies be filled with what you have stored up for them;

may their children have more than enough;

may they leave something over to their little ones.

15As for me, I shall behold your face in righteousness;

when I awake I shall be satisfied, beholding your likeness.