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Daily Readings For December 16

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 Friday, December 16, 2016


Morning Psalm 102

1   Hear my prayer, O LORD;
          let my cry come to you.
2   Do not hide your face from me
          in the day of my distress.
     Incline your ear to me;
          answer me speedily in the day when I call.


3   For my days pass away like smoke,
          and my bones burn like a furnace.
4   My heart is stricken and withered like grass;
          I am too wasted to eat my bread.
5   Because of my loud groaning
          my bones cling to my skin.
6   I am like an owl of the wilderness,
          like a little owl of the waste places.
7   I lie awake;
          I am like a lonely bird on the housetop.
8   All day long my enemies taunt me;
          those who deride me use my name for a curse.
9   For I eat ashes like bread,
          and mingle tears with my drink,
10  because of your indignation and anger;
          for you have lifted me up and thrown me aside.
11  My days are like an evening shadow;
          I wither away like grass.


12  But you, O LORD, are enthroned forever;
          your name endures to all generations.
13  You will rise up and have compassion on Zion,
          for it is time to favor it;
          the appointed time has come.
14  For your servants hold its stones dear,
          and have pity on its dust.
15  The nations will fear the name of the LORD,
          and all the kings of the earth your glory.
16  For the LORD will build up Zion;
          he will appear in his glory.
17  He will regard the prayer of the destitute,
          and will not despise their prayer.
18  Let this be recorded for a generation to come,
          so that a people yet unborn may praise the LORD:
19  that he looked down from his holy height,
          from heaven the LORD looked at the earth,
20  to hear the groans of the prisoners,
          to set free those who were doomed to die;
21  so that the name of the LORD may be declared in Zion,
          and his praise in Jerusalem,
22  when peoples gather together,
          and kingdoms, to worship the LORD.


23  He has broken my strength in midcourse;
          he has shortened my days.
24  “O my God,” I say, “do not take me away
          at the mid-point of my life,
     you whose years endure
          throughout all generations.”


25  Long ago you laid the foundation of the earth,
          and the heavens are the work of your hands.
26  They will perish, but you endure;
          they will all wear out like a garment.
     You change them like clothing, and they pass away;
27       but you are the same, and your years have no end.
28  The children of your servants shall live secure;
          their offspring shall be established in your presence.

Morning Psalm 148

1   Praise the Lord!
     Praise the Lord from the heavens;
          praise him in the heights!
2   Praise him, all his angels;
          praise him, all his host!


3   Praise him, sun and moon;
          praise him, all you shining stars!
4   Praise him, you highest heavens,
          and you waters above the heavens!


5   Let them praise the name of the Lord,
          for he commanded and they were created.
6   He established them forever and ever;
          he fixed their bounds, which cannot be passed.


7   Praise the Lord from the earth,
          you sea monsters and all deeps,
8   fire and hail, snow and frost,
          stormy wind fulfilling his command!


9   Mountains and all hills,
          fruit trees and all cedars!
10  Wild animals and all cattle,
          creeping things and flying birds!


11  Kings of the earth and all peoples,
          princes and all rulers of the earth!
12  Young men and women alike,
          old and young together!


13  Let them praise the name of the Lord,
          for his name alone is exalted;
          his glory is above earth and heaven.
14  He has raised up a horn for his people,
          praise for all his faithful,
          for the people of Israel who are close to him.
     Praise the Lord!

First Reading Isaiah 10:5-19

5   Ah, Assyria, the rod of my anger —
          the club in their hands is my fury!
6   Against a godless nation I send him,
          and against the people of my wrath I command him,
     to take spoil and seize plunder,
          and to tread them down like the mire of the streets.
7     But this is not what he intends,
          nor does he have this in mind;
     but it is in his heart to destroy,
          and to cut off nations not a few.
8   For he says:
     "Are not my commanders all kings?
9   Is not Calno like Carchemish?
          Is not Hamath like Arpad?
          Is not Samaria like Damascus?
10  As my hand has reached to the kingdoms of the idols
          whose images were greater than those of Jerusalem and Samaria,
11  shall I not do to Jerusalem and her idols
          what I have done to Samaria and her images?"

12When the Lord has finished all his work on Mount Zion and on Jerusalem, he will punish the arrogant boasting of the king of Assyria and his haughty pride.
13For he says:
     "By the strength of my hand I have done it,
          and by my wisdom, for I have understanding;
     I have removed the boundaries of peoples,
          and have plundered their treasures;
          like a bull I have brought down those who sat on thrones.
14  My hand has found, like a nest,
          the wealth of the peoples;
     and as one gathers eggs that have been forsaken,
          so I have gathered all the earth;
     and there was none that moved a wing,
          or opened its mouth, or chirped."

15  Shall the ax vaunt itself over the one who wields it,
          or the saw magnify itself against the one who handles it?
     As if a rod should raise the one who lifts it up,
          or as if a staff should lift the one who is not wood!
16  Therefore the Sovereign, the LORD of hosts,
          will send wasting sickness among his stout warriors,
     and under his glory a burning will be kindled,
          like the burning of fire.
17  The light of Israel will become a fire,
          and his Holy One a flame;
     and it will burn and devour
          his thorns and briers in one day.
18  The glory of his forest and his fruitful land
          the LORD will destroy, both soul and body,
          and it will be as when an invalid wastes away.
19  The remnant of the trees of his forest will be so few
          that a child can write them down.

Second Reading 2 Peter 2:17-22

17These are waterless springs and mists driven by a storm; for them the deepest darkness has been reserved. 18For they speak bombastic nonsense, and with licentious desires of the flesh they entice people who have just escaped from those who live in error. 19They promise them freedom, but they themselves are slaves of corruption; for people are slaves to whatever masters them. 20For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overpowered, the last state has become worse for them than the first. 21For it would have been better for them never to have known the way of righteousness than, after knowing it, to turn back from the holy commandment that was passed on to them. 22It has happened to them according to the true proverb,
     "The dog turns back to its own vomit,"
and,
     "The sow is washed only to wallow in the mud."

Gospel Reading Matthew 11:2-15

2When John heard in prison what the Messiah was doing, he sent word by his disciples 3and said to him, "Are you the one who is to come, or are we to wait for another?" 4Jesus answered them, "Go and tell John what you hear and see: 5the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the poor have good news brought to them. 6And blessed is anyone who takes no offense at me.

7As they went away, Jesus began to speak to the crowds about John: "What did you go out into the wilderness to look at? A reed shaken by the wind? 8What then did you go out to see? Someone dressed in soft robes? Look, those who wear soft robes are in royal palaces. 9What then did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet. 10This is the one about whom it is written,
     'See, I am sending my messenger ahead of you,
          who will prepare your way before you.'
11Truly I tell you, among those born of women no one has arisen greater than John the Baptist; yet the least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. 12From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven has suffered violence, and the violent take it by force. 13For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John came; 14and if you are willing to accept it, he is Elijah who is to come. 15Let anyone with ears listen!"

Evening Psalm 130

1   Out of the depths I cry to you, O LORD.
2       Lord, hear my voice!
     Let your ears be attentive
          to the voice of my supplications!


3   If you, O LORD, should mark iniquities,
          Lord, who could stand?
4   But there is forgiveness with you,
          so that you may be revered.


5   I wait for the LORD, my soul waits,
          and in his word I hope;
6   my soul waits for the Lord
          more than those who watch for the morning,
          more than those who watch for the morning.


7   O Israel, hope in the LORD!
          For with the LORD there is steadfast love,
          and with him is great power to redeem.
8   It is he who will redeem Israel
          from all its iniquities.

Evening Psalm 16

1   Protect me, O God, for in you I take refuge.
2   I say to the LORD, “You are my Lord;
          I have no good apart from you.”


3   As for the holy ones in the land, they are the noble,
          in whom is all my delight.


4   Those who choose another god multiply their sorrows;
          their drink offerings of blood I will not pour out
          or take their names upon my lips.


5   The LORD is my chosen portion and my cup;
          you hold my lot.
6   The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
          I have a goodly heritage.


7   I bless the LORD who gives me counsel;
          in the night also my heart instructs me.
8   I keep the LORD always before me;
          because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.


9   Therefore my heart is glad, and my soul rejoices;
          my body also rests secure.
10  For you do not give me up to Sheol,
          or let your faithful one see the Pit.


11  You show me the path of life.
          In your presence there is fullness of joy;
          in your right hand are pleasures forevermore.