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Daily Readings For December 23

Please note that two distinct lectionaries are provided on this page: the two-year Daily Lectionary from the Book of Common Worship and the three-year Revised Common Lectionary (RCL) for Sundays and festivals; be sure you select the appropriate one.

Daily Readings Sunday/Festival Readings

Daily Readings for Wednesday, December 23, 2015


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 Jeremiah 31:10-14

10Hear the word of the LORD, O nations,

and declare it in the coastlands far away;

say, "He who scattered Israel will gather him,

and will keep him as a shepherd a flock."

11For the LORD has ransomed Jacob,

and has redeemed him from hands too strong for him.

12They shall come and sing aloud on the height of Zion,

and they shall be radiant over the goodness of the LORD,

over the grain, the wine, and the oil,

and over the young of the flock and the herd;

their life shall become like a watered garden,

and they shall never languish again.

13Then shall the young women rejoice in the dance,

and the young men and the old shall be merry.

I will turn their mourning into joy,

I will comfort them, and give them gladness for sorrow.

14I will give the priests their fill of fatness,

and my people shall be satisfied with my bounty, says the LORD.

Second Reading Galatians 3:15-22

15Brothers and sisters, I give an example from daily life: once a person's will has been ratified, no one adds to it or annuls it. 16Now the promises were made to Abraham and to his offspring; it does not say, "And to offsprings," as of many; but it says, "And to your offspring," that is, to one person, who is Christ. 17My point is this: the law, which came four hundred thirty years later, does not annul a covenant previously ratified by God, so as to nullify the promise. 18For if the inheritance comes from the law, it no longer comes from the promise; but God granted it to Abraham through the promise.

19Why then the law? It was added because of transgressions, until the offspring would come to whom the promise had been made; and it was ordained through angels by a mediator. 20Now a mediator involves more than one party; but God is one.

21Is the law then opposed to the promises of God? Certainly not! For if a law had been given that could make alive, then righteousness would indeed come through the law. 22But the scripture has imprisoned all things under the power of sin, so that what was promised through faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe.

Gospel Reading Matthew 1:1-17

1An account of the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah, the son of David, the son of Abraham.

2Abraham was the father of Isaac, and Isaac the father of Jacob, and Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers, 3and Judah the father of Perez and Zerah by Tamar, and Perez the father of Hezron, and Hezron the father of Aram, 4and Aram the father of Aminadab, and Aminadab the father of Nahshon, and Nahshon the father of Salmon, 5and Salmon the father of Boaz by Rahab, and Boaz the father of Obed by Ruth, and Obed the father of Jesse, 6and Jesse the father of King David.

And David was the father of Solomon by the wife of Uriah, 7and Solomon the father of Rehoboam, and Rehoboam the father of Abijah, and Abijah the father of Asaph, 8and Asaph the father of Jehoshaphat, and Jehoshaphat the father of Joram, and Joram the father of Uzziah, 9and Uzziah the father of Jotham, and Jotham the father of Ahaz, and Ahaz the father of Hezekiah, 10and Hezekiah the father of Manasseh, and Manasseh the father of Amos, and Amos the father of Josiah, 11and Josiah the father of Jechoniah and his brothers, at the time of the deportation to Babylon.

12And after the deportation to Babylon: Jechoniah was the father of Salathiel, and Salathiel the father of Zerubbabel, 13and Zerubbabel the father of Abiud, and Abiud the father of Eliakim, and Eliakim the father of Azor, 14and Azor the father of Zadok, and Zadok the father of Achim, and Achim the father of Eliud, 15and Eliud the father of Eleazar, and Eleazar the father of Matthan, and Matthan the father of Jacob,16and Jacob the father of Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom Jesus was born, who is called the Messiah.

17So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations; and from David to the deportation to Babylon, fourteen generations; and from the deportation to Babylon to the Messiah, fourteen generations.

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.