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Daily Readings For August 31

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 Thursday, August 31, 2017


Morning Psalm 143

1   Hear my prayer, O LORD;
          give ear to my supplications in your faithfulness;
          answer me in your righteousness.
2   Do not enter into judgment with your servant,
          for no one living is righteous before you.


3   For the enemy has pursued me,
          crushing my life to the ground,
          making me sit in darkness like those long dead.
4   Therefore my spirit faints within me;
          my heart within me is appalled.


5   I remember the days of old,
          I think about all your deeds,
          I meditate on the works of your hands.
6   I stretch out my hands to you;
          my soul thirsts for you like a parched land.                    Selah


7   Answer me quickly, O LORD;
          my spirit fails.
     Do not hide your face from me,
          or I shall be like those who go down to the Pit.
8   Let me hear of your steadfast love in the morning,
          for in you I put my trust.
     Teach me the way I should go,
          for to you I lift up my soul.


9   Save me, O LORD, from my enemies;
          I have fled to you for refuge.
10  Teach me to do your will,
          for you are my God.
     Let your good spirit lead me
          on a level path.


11  For your name’s sake, O LORD, preserve my life.
          In your righteousness bring me out of trouble.
12  In your steadfast love cut off my enemies,
          and destroy all my adversaries,
          for I am your servant.

Morning Psalm 147:12-20

12  Praise the Lord, O Jerusalem!
          Praise your God, O Zion!
13  For he strengthens the bars of your gates;
          he blesses your children within you.
14  He grants peace within your borders;
          he fills you with the finest of wheat.
15  He sends out his command to the earth;
          his word runs swiftly.
16  He gives snow like wool;
          he scatters frost like ashes.
17  He hurls down hail like crumbs —
          who can stand before his cold?
18  He sends out his word, and melts them;
          he makes his wind blow, and the waters flow.
19  He declares his word to Jacob,
          his statutes and ordinances to Israel.
20  He has not dealt thus with any other nation;
          they do not know his ordinances.
     Praise the Lord!

First Reading 1 Kings 3:16-28

16Later, two women who were prostitutes came to the king and stood before him. 17The one woman said, “Please, my lord, this woman and I live in the same house; and I gave birth while she was in the house. 18Then on the third day after I gave birth, this woman also gave birth. We were together; there was no one else with us in the house, only the two of us were in the house. 19Then this woman’s son died in the night, because she lay on him. 20She got up in the middle of the night and took my son from beside me while your servant slept. She laid him at her breast, and laid her dead son at my breast. 21When I rose in the morning to nurse my son, I saw that he was dead; but when I looked at him closely in the morning, clearly it was not the son I had borne.” 22But the other woman said, “No, the living son is mine, and the dead son is yours.” The first said, “No, the dead son is yours, and the living son is mine.” So they argued before the king.

23Then the king said, “The one says, ‘This is my son that is alive, and your son is dead’; while the other says, ‘Not so! Your son is dead, and my son is the living one.’” 24So the king said, “Bring me a sword,” and they brought a sword before the king. 25The king said, “Divide the living boy in two; then give half to the one, and half to the other.” 26But the woman whose son was alive said to the king — because compassion for her son burned within her — “Please, my lord, give her the living boy; certainly do not kill him!” The other said, “It shall be neither mine nor yours; divide it.” 27Then the king responded: “Give the first woman the living boy; do not kill him. She is his mother.” 28All Israel heard of the judgment that the king had rendered; and they stood in awe of the king, because they perceived that the wisdom of God was in him, to execute justice.

Second Reading Acts 27:27-44

27When the fourteenth night had come, as we were drifting across the sea of Adria, about midnight the sailors suspected that they were nearing land. 28So they took soundings and found twenty fathoms; a little farther on they took soundings again and found fifteen fathoms. 29Fearing that we might run on the rocks, they let down four anchors from the stern and prayed for day to come. 30But when the sailors tried to escape from the ship and had lowered the boat into the sea, on the pretext of putting out anchors from the bow, 31Paul said to the centurion and the soldiers, “Unless these men stay in the ship, you cannot be saved.” 32Then the soldiers cut away the ropes of the boat and set it adrift.

33Just before daybreak, Paul urged all of them to take some food, saying, “Today is the fourteenth day that you have been in suspense and remaining without food, having eaten nothing. 34Therefore I urge you to take some food, for it will help you survive; for none of you will lose a hair from your heads.” 35After he had said this, he took bread; and giving thanks to God in the presence of all, he broke it and began to eat. 36Then all of them were encouraged and took food for themselves. 37(We were in all two hundred seventy-six persons in the ship.) 38After they had satisfied their hunger, they lightened the ship by throwing the wheat into the sea.

39In the morning they did not recognize the land, but they noticed a bay with a beach, on which they planned to run the ship ashore, if they could. 40So they cast off the anchors and left them in the sea. At the same time they loosened the ropes that tied the steering-oars; then hoisting the foresail to the wind, they made for the beach. 41But striking a reef, they ran the ship aground; the bow stuck and remained immovable, but the stern was being broken up by the force of the waves. 42The soldiers’ plan was to kill the prisoners, so that none might swim away and escape; 43but the centurion, wishing to save Paul, kept them from carrying out their plan. He ordered those who could swim to jump overboard first and make for the land, 44and the rest to follow, some on planks and others on pieces of the ship. And so it was that all were brought safely to land.

Gospel Reading Mark 14:12-26

12On the first day of Unleavened Bread, when the Passover lamb is sacrificed, his disciples said to him, “Where do you want us to go and make the preparations for you to eat the Passover?” 13So he sent two of his disciples, saying to them, “Go into the city, and a man carrying a jar of water will meet you; follow him, 14and wherever he enters, say to the owner of the house, ‘The Teacher asks, Where is my guest room where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?’ 15He will show you a large room upstairs, furnished and ready. Make preparations for us there.” 16So the disciples set out and went to the city, and found everything as he had told them; and they prepared the Passover meal.

17When it was evening, he came with the twelve. 18And when they had taken their places and were eating, Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, one of you will betray me, one who is eating with me.” 19They began to be distressed and to say to him one after another, “Surely, not I?” 20He said to them, “It is one of the twelve, one who is dipping bread into the bowl with me. 21For the Son of Man goes as it is written of him, but woe to that one by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been better for that one not to have been born.”

22While they were eating, he took a loaf of bread, and after blessing it he broke it, gave it to them, and said, “Take; this is my body.” 23Then he took a cup, and after giving thanks he gave it to them, and all of them drank from it. 24He said to them, “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many. 25Truly I tell you, I will never again drink of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God.”

26When they had sung the hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.

Evening Psalm 81

1   Sing aloud to God our strength;
          shout for joy to the God of Jacob.
2   Raise a song, sound the tambourine,
          the sweet lyre with the harp.
3   Blow the trumpet at the new moon,
          at the full moon, on our festal day.
4   For it is a statute for Israel,
          an ordinance of the God of Jacob.
5   He made it a decree in Joseph,
          when he went out over the land of Egypt.


     I hear a voice I had not known:
6   “I relieved your shoulder of the burden;
          your hands were freed from the basket.
7   In distress you called, and I rescued you;
          I answered you in the secret place of thunder;
          I tested you at the waters of Meribah. Selah
8   Hear, O my people, while I admonish you;
          O Israel, if you would but listen to me!
9   There shall be no strange god among you;
          you shall not bow down to a foreign god.
10  I am the LORD your God,
          who brought you up out of the land of Egypt.
          Open your mouth wide and I will fill it.


11“But my people did not listen to my voice;
          Israel would not submit to me.
12  So I gave them over to their stubborn hearts,
          to follow their own counsels.
13  O that my people would listen to me,
          that Israel would walk in my ways!
14  Then I would quickly subdue their enemies,
          and turn my hand against their foes.
15  Those who hate the LORD would cringe before him,
          and their doom would last forever.
16  I would feed you with the finest of the wheat,
          and with honey from the rock I would satisfy you.”

Evening Psalm 116

1   I love the LORD, because he has heard
          my voice and my supplications.
2   Because he inclined his ear to me,
          therefore I will call on him as long as I live.
3   The snares of death encompassed me;
          the pangs of Sheol laid hold on me;
          I suffered distress and anguish.
4   Then I called on the name of the LORD:
          “O LORD, I pray, save my life!”


5   Gracious is the LORD, and righteous;
          our God is merciful.
6   The LORD protects the simple;
          when I was brought low, he saved me.
7   Return, O my soul, to your rest,
          for the LORD has dealt bountifully with you.


8   For you have delivered my soul from death,
          my eyes from tears,
          my feet from stumbling.
9   I walk before the LORD
          in the land of the living.
10  I kept my faith, even when I said,
          “I am greatly afflicted”;
11  I said in my consternation,
          “Everyone is a liar.”


12  What shall I return to the LORD
          for all his bounty to me?
13   I will lift up the cup of salvation
          and call on the name of the LORD,
14  I will pay my vows to the LORD
          in the presence of all his people.
15  Precious in the sight of the LORD
          is the death of his faithful ones.
16  O LORD, I am your servant;
          I am your servant, the child of your serving girl.
          You have loosed my bonds.
17  I will offer to you a thanksgiving sacrifice
          and call on the name of the LORD.
18  I will pay my vows to the LORD
          in the presence of all his people,
19  in the courts of the house of the LORD,
          in your midst, O Jerusalem.
     Praise the LORD!