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Daily Readings For December 21

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 Saturday, December 21, 2024


Morning Psalm 90

1   Lord, you have been our dwelling place
          in all generations.
2   Before the mountains were brought forth,
          or ever you had formed the earth and the world,
          from everlasting to everlasting you are God.


3   You turn us back to dust,
          and say, “Turn back, you mortals.”
4   For a thousand years in your sight
          are like yesterday when it is past,
          or like a watch in the night.


5   You sweep them away; they are like a dream,
          like grass that is renewed in the morning;
6   in the morning it flourishes and is renewed;
          in the evening it fades and withers.


7   For we are consumed by your anger;
          by your wrath we are overwhelmed.
8   You have set our iniquities before you,
          our secret sins in the light of your countenance.


9   For all our days pass away under your wrath;
          our years come to an end like a sigh.
10  The days of our life are seventy years,
          or perhaps eighty, if we are strong;
     even then their span is only toil and trouble;
          they are soon gone, and we fly away.


11  Who considers the power of your anger?
          Your wrath is as great as the fear that is due you.
12  So teach us to count our days
          that we may gain a wise heart.


13  Turn, O LORD! How long?
          Have compassion on your servants!
14  Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love,
          so that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.
15  Make us glad as many days as you have afflicted us,
          and as many years as we have seen evil.
16  Let your work be manifest to your servants,
          and your glorious power to their children.
17  Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us,
          and prosper for us the work of our hands —
          O prosper the work of our hands!

Morning Psalm 149

1   Praise the Lord!
     Sing to the Lord a new song,
          his praise in the assembly of the faithful.
2   Let Israel be glad in its Maker;
          let the children of Zion rejoice in their King.
3   Let them praise his name with dancing,
          making melody to him with tambourine and lyre.
4   For the Lord takes pleasure in his people;
          he adorns the humble with victory.
5   Let the faithful exult in glory;
          let them sing for joy on their couches.
6   Let the high praises of God be in their throats
          and two-edged swords in their hands,
7   to execute vengeance on the nations
          and punishment on the peoples,
8   to bind their kings with fetters
          and their nobles with chains of iron,
9   to execute on them the judgment decreed.
          This is glory for all his faithful ones.
     Praise the Lord!

First Reading Isaiah 29:9-24

9   Stupefy yourselves and be in a stupor,
          blind yourselves and be blind!
     Be drunk, but not from wine;
          stagger, but not from strong drink!
10  For the LORD has poured out upon you
          a spirit of deep sleep;
     he has closed your eyes, you prophets,
          and covered your heads, you seers.

11The vision of all this has become for you like the words of a sealed document. If it is given to those who can read, with the command, "Read this," they say, "We cannot, for it is sealed." 12And if it is given to those who cannot read, saying, "Read this," they say, "We cannot read."

13  The Lord said:
     Because these people draw near with their mouths
          and honor me with their lips,
          while their hearts are far from me,
     and their worship of me is a human commandment learned by rote;
14  so I will again do
          amazing things with this people,
          shocking and amazing.
     The wisdom of their wise shall perish,
          and the discernment of the discerning shall be hidden.

15  Ha! You who hide a plan too deep for the LORD,
          whose deeds are in the dark,
          and who say, "Who sees us? Who knows us?"
16  You turn things upside down!
          Shall the potter be regarded as the clay?
     Shall the thing made say of its maker,
          "He did not make me";
     or the thing formed say of the one who formed it,
          "He has no understanding"?

17  Shall not Lebanon in a very little while
          become a fruitful field,
          and the fruitful field be regarded as a forest?
18  On that day the deaf shall hear
          the words of a scroll,
     and out of their gloom and darkness
          the eyes of the blind shall see.
19  The meek shall obtain fresh joy in the LORD,
          and the neediest people shall exult in the Holy One of Israel.
20  For the tyrant shall be no more,
          and the scoffer shall cease to be;
          all those alert to do evil shall be cut off —
21  those who cause a person to lose a lawsuit,
          who set a trap for the arbiter in the gate,
          and without grounds deny justice to the one in the right.

22Therefore thus says the LORD, who redeemed Abraham,
concerning the house of Jacob:
     No longer shall Jacob be ashamed,
          no longer shall his face grow pale.
23  For when he sees his children,
          the work of my hands, in his midst,
          they will sanctify my name;
     they will sanctify the Holy One of Jacob,
          and will stand in awe of the God of Israel.
24  And those who err in spirit will come to understanding,
          and those who grumble will accept instruction.

Second Reading Revelation 21:9-21

9Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues came and said to me, "Come, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb." 10And in the spirit he carried me away to a great, high mountain and showed me the holy city Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God. 11It has the glory of God and a radiance like a very rare jewel, like jasper, clear as crystal. 12It has a great, high wall with twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels, and on the gates are inscribed the names of the twelve tribes of the Israelites; 13on the east three gates, on the north three gates, on the south three gates, and on the west three gates. 14And the wall of the city has twelve foundations, and on them are the twelve names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

15The angel who talked to me had a measuring rod of gold to measure the city and its gates and walls. 16The city lies foursquare, its length the same as its width; and he measured the city with his rod, fifteen hundred miles; its length and width and height are equal. 17He also measured its wall, one hundred forty-four cubits by human measurement, which the angel was using. 18The wall is built of jasper, while the city is pure gold, clear as glass. 19The foundations of the wall of the city are adorned with every jewel; the first was jasper, the second sapphire, the third agate, the fourth emerald, 20the fifth onyx, the sixth carnelian, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, the eleventh jacinth, the twelfth amethyst. 21And the twelve gates are twelve pearls, each of the gates is a single pearl, and the street of the city is pure gold, transparent as glass.

Gospel Reading Luke 1:26-38

26In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth, 27to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin's name was Mary. 28And he came to her and said, "Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you." 29But she was much perplexed by his words and pondered what sort of greeting this might be. 30The angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus. 32He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give to him the throne of his ancestor David. 33He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end." 34Mary said to the angel, "How can this be, since I am a virgin?" 35The angel said to her, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be holy; he will be called Son of God. 36And now, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son; and this is the sixth month for her who was said to be barren. 37For nothing will be impossible with God." 38Then Mary said, "Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word." Then the angel departed from her.

Evening Psalm 80

1   Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel,
          you who lead Joseph like a flock!
     You who are enthroned upon the cherubim, shine forth
2        before Ephraim and Benjamin and Manasseh.
     Stir up your might,
          and come to save us!


3   Restore us, O God;
     let your face shine, that we may be saved.


4   O LORD God of hosts,
          how long will you be angry with your people's prayers?
5   You have fed them with the bread of tears,
          and given them tears to drink in full measure.
6   You make us the scorn of our neighbors;
          our enemies laugh among themselves.


7   Restore us, O God of hosts;
          let your face shine, that we may be saved.


8   You brought a vine out of Egypt;
     you drove out the nations and planted it.
9   You cleared the ground for it;
          it took deep root and filled the land.
10  The mountains were covered with its shade,
          the mighty cedars with its branches;
11  it sent out its branches to the sea,
          and its shoots to the River.
12  Why then have you broken down its walls,
          so that all who pass along the way pluck its fruit?
13  The boar from the forest ravages it,
          and all that move in the field feed on it.


14  Turn again, O God of hosts;
          look down from heaven, and see;
     have regard for this vine,
15       the stock that your right hand planted.
16  They have burned it with fire, they have cut it down;
          may they perish at the rebuke of your countenance.
17  But let your hand be upon the one at your right hand,
          the one whom you made strong for yourself.
18  Then we will never turn back from you;
          give us life, and we will call on your name.


19  Restore us, O LORD God of hosts;
          let your face shine, that we may be saved.

Evening Psalm 72

1   Give the king your justice, O God,
          and your righteousness to a king’s son.
2   May he judge your people with righteousness,
          and your poor with justice.
3   May the mountains yield prosperity for the people,
          and the hills, in righteousness.
4   May he defend the cause of the poor of the people,
          give deliverance to the needy,
          and crush the oppressor.
5   May he live while the sun endures,
          and as long as the moon, throughout all generations.
6   May he be like rain that falls on the mown grass,
          like showers that water the earth.
7   In his days may righteousness flourish
          and peace abound, until the moon is no more.


8   May he have dominion from sea to sea,
          and from the River to the ends of the earth.
9   May his foes bow down before him,
          and his enemies lick the dust.
10  May the kings of Tarshish and of the isles
          render him tribute,
     may the kings of Sheba and Seba
          bring gifts.
11  May all kings fall down before him,
          all nations give him service.


12  For he delivers the needy when they call,
          the poor and those who have no helper.
13  He has pity on the weak and the needy,
          and saves the lives of the needy.
14  From oppression and violence he redeems their life;
          and precious is their blood in his sight.


15  Long may he live!
          May gold of Sheba be given to him.
     May prayer be made for him continually,
          and blessings invoked for him all day long.
16  May there be abundance of grain in the land;
          may it wave on the tops of the mountains;
          may its fruit be like Lebanon;
     and may people blossom in the cities
          like the grass of the field.
17  May his name endure forever,
          his fame continue as long as the sun.
     May all nations be blessed in him;
          may they pronounce him happy.


18  Blessed be the LORD, the God of Israel,
          who alone does wondrous things.
19  Blessed be his glorious name forever;
          may his glory fill the whole earth. Amen and Amen.


20The prayers of David son of Jesse are ended.