Wednesday, December 31, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 31, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 31, 2014: Today our passages are Malachi 3:1–4:6; Revelation 22:1-21; Psalm 150:1-6; and Proverbs 31:25-31 . The readings are from The Message...

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 30, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 30, 2014: Today our passages are Malachi 1:1–2:17; Revelation 21:1-27; Psalm 149:1-9; and Proverbs 31:10-24 . The readings are from The Messag...

Sunday, December 28, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 29, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 29, 2014: Today our passages are Zechariah 14:1-21; Revelation 20:1-15; Psalm 148:1-14; and Proverbs 31:8-9 . The readings are from The Messa...

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 28, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 28, 2014: Today our passages are Zechariah 12:1–13:9; Revelation 19:1-21; Psalm 147:1-20; and Proverbs 31:1-7 . The readings are from The Mes...

Saturday, December 27, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 27, 2015

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 27, 2015: Today our passages are Zechariah 10:1–11:17; Revelation 18:1-24; Psalm 146:1-10; and Proverbs 30:33 . The readings are from The Mes...

Friday, December 26, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Reading for December 26, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Reading for December 26, 2014: Today our passages are Zechariah 9:1-17; Revelation 17:1-18; Psalm 145:1-21; and Proverbs 30:32 . The readings are from The Message...

Thursday, December 25, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 25, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 25, 2014: Today our passages are Zechariah  8:1-23; Revelation 16:1-21; Psalm 144:1-15; and Proverbs 30:29-31 . The readings are from The Mess...

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Growing in Grace: The Passages of Christmas (Session 3 - The Origin in John)

Growing in Grace: The Passages of Christmas (Session 3 - The Origin ...: You may listen to a podcast of this session at PodBean . During this session, we’ll consider the prologue from John We discussed the fol...

The Lectionary Passages for Sunday, December 21, 2014

Below are NRSV translations of the lessons from the Psalms (Psalm 148), Old Testament (Isaiah 61:10–62:3), the Letters (Galatians 4:4-7), and the Gospels (Luke 2:22-40) Please make any comments concerning the passages you want. Together, let's discuss the Word of God.

Psalm 148

Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord from the heavens; praise him in the heights!

Praise him, all his angels; praise him, all his host!

Praise him, sun and moon; praise him, all you shining stars!

Praise him, you highest heavens, and you waters above the heavens!

Let them praise the name of the Lord, for he commanded and they were created.

He established them forever and ever; he fixed their bounds, which cannot be passed.

Praise the Lord from the earth, you sea monsters and all deeps,

fire and hail, snow and frost, stormy wind fulfilling his command!

Mountains and all hills, fruit trees and all cedars!

Wild animals and all cattle, creeping things and flying birds!

Kings of the earth and all peoples, princes and all rulers of the earth!

Young men and women alike, old and young together!

Let them praise the name of the Lord, for his name alone is exalted; his glory is above earth and heaven.

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!

Isaiah 61:10–62:3

I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my whole being shall exult in my God; for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation, he has covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decks himself with a garland, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels. For as the earth brings forth its shoots, and as a garden causes what is sown in it to spring up, so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to spring up before all the nations.

For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent, and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest, until her vindication shines out like the dawn, and her salvation like a burning torch. The nations shall see your vindication, and all the kings your glory; and you shall be called by a new name that the mouth of the Lord will give. You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the Lord, and a royal diadem in the hand of your God.

Galatians 4:4-7

But when the fullness of time had come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, in order to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as children. And because you are children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” So you are no longer a slave but a child, and if a child then also an heir, through God.

Luke 2:22-40

When the time came for their purification according to the law of Moses, they brought him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord (as it is written in the law of the Lord, “Every firstborn male shall be designated as holy to the Lord”), and they offered a sacrifice according to what is stated in the law of the Lord, “a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons.”

Now there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon; this man was righteous and devout, looking forward to the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit rested on him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. Guided by the Spirit, Simeon came into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him what was customary under the law, Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying, “Master, now you are dismissing your servant in peace, according to your word; for my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the presence of all peoples, a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel.” And the child’s father and mother were amazed at what was being said about him. Then Simeon blessed them and said to his mother Mary, “This child is destined for the falling and the rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be opposed so that the inner thoughts of many will be revealed—and a sword will pierce your own soul too.” There was also a prophet, Anna the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was of a great age, having lived with her husband seven years after her marriage, then as a widow to the age of eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped there with fasting and prayer night and day. At that moment she came, and began to praise God and to speak about the child to all who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem. When they had finished everything required by the law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee, to their own town of Nazareth. The child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom; and the favor of God was upon him.

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 24, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 24, 2014: Today our passages are Zechariah 6:1–7:14; Revelation 15:1-8; Psalm 143:1-12; and Proverbs 30:24-28 . The readings are from The Mess...

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 23, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 23, 2014: Today our passages are Zechariah 4:1–5:11; Revelation 14:1-20; Psalm 142:1-7; and Proverbs 30:21-23 . The readings are from The Mess...

Monday, December 22, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 22, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 22, 2014: Today our passages are Zechariah 2:1–3:10; Revelation 13:1b-18; Psalm 141:1-10; and Proverbs 30:18-20 . The readings are from The Me...

Sunday, December 21, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 21, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 21, 2014: Today our passages are Zechariah 1:1-21; Revelation 12:1–13:1a; Psalm 140:1-13; and Proverbs 30:17 . The readings are from The Messa...

Saturday, December 20, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 20, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 20, 2014: Today our passages are Haggai 1:1–2:23; Revelation 11:1-9; Psalm 139:1-24; and Proverbs 30:15-16 . The readings are from The Messag...

Friday, December 19, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 19, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 19, 2014: Today our passages are Zephaniah 1:1–3:20; Revelation 10:1-11; Psalm 138.1-8; and Proverbs 30:11-14 . The readings are from The Mess...

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Growing in Grace: The Passages of Christmas (Session 2 - The Story f...

Growing in Grace: The Passages of Christmas (Session 2 - The Story f...: You may listen to a podcast of this session at PodBean . During this session, we’ll consider the birth story from Luke. We discussed the...

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 18, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 18, 2014: Today our passages are Habakkuk 1:1–3:19; Revelation 9:1-21; Psalm 137:1-9; and Proverbs 30:10 . The readings are from The Message ...

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

The Lectionary Passages for Sunday, December 21, 2014

Below are NRSV translations of the lessons from the Psalms (Psalm 89:1-4, 19-26), Old Testament (2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16), the Letters (Romans 16:25-27), and the Gospels (Luke 1:46b-55 & Luke 1:26-38) Please make any comments concerning the passages you want. Together, let's discuss the Word of God.

Psalm 89:1-4, 19-26

I will sing of your steadfast love, O Lord, forever; with my mouth I will proclaim your faithfulness to all generations.

I declare that your steadfast love is established forever; your faithfulness is as firm as the heavens.

You said, “I have made a covenant with my chosen one, I have sworn to my servant David:

‘I will establish your descendants forever, and build your throne for all generations.’” Selah

Then you spoke in a vision to your faithful one, and said: “I have set the crown on one who is mighty, I have exalted one chosen from the people.

I have found my servant David; with my holy oil I have anointed him;

my hand shall always remain with him; my arm also shall strengthen him.

The enemy shall not outwit him, the wicked shall not humble him.

I will crush his foes before him and strike down those who hate him.

My faithfulness and steadfast love shall be with him; and in my name his horn shall be exalted.

I will set his hand on the sea and his right hand on the rivers.

He shall cry to me, ‘You are my Father, my God, and the Rock of my salvation!’

2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16

Now when the king was settled in his house, and the Lord had given him rest from all his enemies around him, the king said to the prophet Nathan, “See now, I am living in a house of cedar, but the ark of God stays in a tent.” Nathan said to the king, “Go, do all that you have in mind; for the Lord is with you.”

But that same night the word of the Lord came to Nathan: Go and tell my servant David: Thus says the Lord: Are you the one to build me a house to live in? I have not lived in a house since the day I brought up the people of Israel from Egypt to this day, but I have been moving about in a tent and a tabernacle. Wherever I have moved about among all the people of Israel, did I ever speak a word with any of the tribal leaders of Israel, whom I commanded to shepherd my people Israel, saying, “Why have you not built me a house of cedar?” Now therefore thus you shall say to my servant David: Thus says the Lord of hosts: I took you from the pasture, from following the sheep to be prince over my people Israel; and I have been with you wherever you went, and have cut off all your enemies from before you; and I will make for you a great name, like the name of the great ones of the earth. And I will appoint a place for my people Israel and will plant them, so that they may live in their own place, and be disturbed no more; and evildoers shall afflict them no more, as formerly, from the time that I appointed judges over my people Israel; and I will give you rest from all your enemies. Moreover the Lord declares to you that the Lord will make you a house. Your house and your kingdom shall be made sure forever before me; your throne shall be established forever.

Romans 16:25-27

Now to God who is able to strengthen you according to my gospel and the proclamation of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery that was kept secret for long ages but is now disclosed, and through the prophetic writings is made known to all the Gentiles, according to the command of the eternal God, to bring about the obedience of faith— to the only wise God, through Jesus Christ, to whom be the glory forever! Amen.

Luke 1:26-38

In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. And he came to her and said, “Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you.” But she was much perplexed by his words and pondered what sort of greeting this might be. The angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus. He 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. He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.” Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I am a virgin?” The 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. And 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. For nothing will be impossible with God.” Then 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.

Luke 1:46b-55

And Mary said, “My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked with favor on the lowliness of his servant. Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed; for the Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is his name. His mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation. He has shown strength with his arm; he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts. He has brought down the powerful from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly; he has filled the hungry with good things, and sent the rich away empty. He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy, according to the promise he made to our ancestors, to Abraham and to his descendants forever.”

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 17, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 17, 2014: Today our passages are Nahum 1:1–3:19; Revelation 8:1-13; Psalm 136:1-26; and Proverbs 30:7-9 . The readings are from The Message b...

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 16, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 16, 2014: Today our passages are Micah 5:1–7:20; Revelation 7:1-17; Psalm 135:1-21; and Proverbs 30:5-6 . The readings are from The Message by...

Monday, December 15, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 15, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 15, 2014: Today our passages are Micah 1:1–4:13; Revelation 6:1-17; Psalm 134:1-3; and Proverbs 30:1-4 . The readings are from The Message by...

Sunday, December 14, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 14, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 14, 2014: Today our passages are Jonah 1:1–4:11; Revelation 5:1-14; Psalm 133:1-3; and Proverbs 29:26-27 . The readings are from The Message b...

Saturday, December 13, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 13, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 13, 2014: Today our passages are  Obadiah 1-21; Revelation 4:1-11; Psalm 132:1-18; and Proverbs 29:24-25 . The readings are from  The Message by...

Friday, December 12, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 12, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 12, 2014: Today our passages are Amos 7:1–9:15; Revelation 3:7-22; Psalm 131:1-3; and Proverbs 29:23 . The readings are from The Message by ...

Thursday, December 11, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 11, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 11, 2014: Today our passages are Amos 4:1–6:14; Revelation 2:18–3:6; Psalm 130:1-8; and Proverbs 29:19-20 . The readings are from The Message ...

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

The Lectionary Passages for Sunday, December 14, 2014

Below are NRSV translations of the lessons from the Psalms (Psalm 126), Old Testament (Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11), the Letters (1 Thessalonians 5:16-24), and the Gospels (Luke 1:46b-55 & John 1:6-8, 19-28) Please make any comments concerning the passages you want. Together, let's discuss the Word of God.

Psalm_126.png (627×354)Psalm 126

When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion, we were like those who dream.

Then our mouth was filled with laughter, and our tongue with shouts of joy; then it was said among the nations, “The Lord has done great things for them.”

The Lord has done great things for us, and we rejoiced.

Restore our fortunes, O Lord, like the watercourses in the Negeb.

May those who sow in tears reap with shouts of joy.

Those who go out weeping, bearing the seed for sowing, shall come home with shouts of joy, carrying their sheaves.

is61_2.jpg (643×900)Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11

The spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me; he has sent me to bring good news to the oppressed, to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and release to the prisoners; to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn; to provide for those who mourn in Zion— to give them a garland instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the mantle of praise instead of a faint spirit. They will be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, to display his glory.

They shall build up the ancient ruins, they shall raise up the former devastations; they shall repair the ruined cities, the devastations of many generations. For I the Lord love justice, I hate robbery and wrongdoing; I will faithfully give them their recompense, and I will make an everlasting covenant with them. Their descendants shall be known among the nations, and their offspring among the peoples; all who see them shall acknowledge that they are a people whom the Lord has blessed.

I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my whole being shall exult in my God; for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation, he has covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decks himself with a garland, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels. For as the earth brings forth its shoots, and as a garden causes what is sown in it to spring up, so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to spring up before all the nations.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-24

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise the words of prophets, but test everything; hold fast to what is good; abstain from every form of evil.

May the God of peace himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be kept sound and blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do this.

arc_magnificat.jpg (336×416)Luke 1:46-55

And Mary said, “My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked with favor on the lowliness of his servant. Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed; for the Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is his name. His mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation. He has shown strength with his arm; he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts. He has brought down the powerful from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly; he has filled the hungry with good things, and sent the rich away empty. He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy, according to the promise he made to our ancestors, to Abraham and to his descendants forever.”

St__John_the_Baptist__1.jpg (300×438)
John 1:6-8, 19-28

There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light.

This is the testimony given by John when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, “Who are you?” He confessed and did not deny it, but confessed, “I am not the Messiah.” And they asked him, “What then? Are you Elijah?” He said, “I am not.” “Are you the prophet?” He answered, “No.” Then they said to him, “Who are you? Let us have an answer for those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?” He said, “I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way of the Lord,’” as the prophet Isaiah said. Now they had been sent from the Pharisees. They asked him, “Why then are you baptizing if you are neither the Messiah, nor Elijah, nor the prophet?” John answered them, “I baptize with water. Among you stands one whom you do not know, the one who is coming after me; I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandal.” This took place in Bethany across the Jordan where John was baptizing.

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 10, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 10, 2014: Today our passages are Amos 1:1–3:15; Revelation 2:1-17; Psalm 129:1-8; and Proverbs 29:19-20 . The readings are from The Message ...

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 9, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 9, 2014: Today our passages are Joel 1:1–3:21; Revelation 1:1-20; Psalm 128:1-6; and Proverbs 29:18 . The readings are from The Message by ...

Monday, December 8, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 8, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 8, 2014: Today our passages are Hosea 10:1–14:9; Jude 1-25; Psalm 127:1-5; and Proverbs 29:15-17 . The readings are from The Message by Eug...

Sunday, December 7, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 7, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 7, 2014: Today our passages are Hosea 6:1–9:17; 3 John 1-14; Psalm 126:1-6; and Proverbs 29:12-14 . The readings are from The Message by Eug...

Saturday, December 6, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 6, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 6, 2014: Today our passages are Hosea 4:1–5:15; 2 John 1-13; Psalm 125:1-5; and Proverbs 29:9-11 . The readings are from The Message by Eu...

Friday, December 5, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 5, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 5, 2014: Today our passages are Hosea 1:1–3:5; 1 John 5:1-21; Psalm 124:1-8; and Proverbs 29:5-8 . The readings are from The Message by Eug...

Thursday, December 4, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 4, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 4, 2014: Today our passages are Daniel 11:36–12:13; 1 John 4:1-21; Psalm 123:1-4; and Proverbs 29:2-4 . The readings are from The Message by...

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

The Lectionary Passages for Sunday, December 7, 2014

Below are NRSV translations of the lessons from the Psalms (Psalm 85:1-2, 8-13), Old Testament (Isaiah 40:1-11), the Letters (2 Peter 3:8-15a), and the Gospels (Mark 1:1-8) Please make any comments concerning the passages you want. Together, let's discuss the Word of God.

Psalm 85:1-2, 8-13

Lord, you were favorable to your land; you restored the fortunes of Jacob.

You forgave the iniquity of your people; you pardoned all their sin. Selah

Let me hear what God the Lord will speak, for he will speak peace to his people, to his faithful, to those who turn to him in their hearts.

Surely his salvation is at hand for those who fear him, that his glory may dwell in our land.

Steadfast love and faithfulness will meet; righteousness and peace will kiss each other.

Faithfulness will spring up from the ground, and righteousness will look down from the sky.

The Lord will give what is good, and our land will yield its increase.

Righteousness will go before him, and will make a path for his steps.

Isaiah 40:1-11

Comfort, O comfort my people, says your God. Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and cry to her that she has served her term, that her penalty is paid, that she has received from the Lord’s hand double for all her sins.

A voice cries out: “In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain. Then the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all people shall see it together, for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.” A voice says, “Cry out!” And I said, “What shall I cry?” All people are grass, their constancy is like the flower of the field. The grass withers, the flower fades, when the breath of the Lord blows upon it; surely the people are grass. The grass withers, the flower fades; but the word of our God will stand forever.

Get you up to a high mountain, O Zion, herald of good tidings; lift up your voice with strength, O Jerusalem, herald of good tidings, lift it up, do not fear; say to the cities of Judah, “Here is your God!” See, the Lord God comes with might, and his arm rules for him; his reward is with him, and his recompense before him. He will feed his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs in his arms, and carry them in his bosom, and gently lead the mother sheep.

2 Peter 3:8-15a

But do not ignore this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like one day.

The Lord is not slow about his promise, as some think of slowness, but is patient with you, not wanting any to perish, but all to come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a loud noise, and the elements will be dissolved with fire, and the earth and everything that is done on it will be disclosed.

Since all these things are to be dissolved in this way, what sort of persons ought you to be in leading lives of holiness and godliness, waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be set ablaze and dissolved, and the elements will melt with fire? But, in accordance with his promise, we wait for new heavens and a new earth, where righteousness is at home. Therefore, beloved, while you are waiting for these things, strive to be found by him at peace, without spot or blemish; and regard the patience of our Lord as salvation.

Mark 1:1-8

The beginning of the good news of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

As it is written in the prophet Isaiah,
“See, I am sending my messenger ahead of you,
who will prepare your way;
the voice of one crying out in the wilderness:
‘Prepare the way of the Lord,
make his paths straight,’”

John the baptizer appeared in the wilderness, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. And people from the whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem were going out to him, and were baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins. Now John was clothed with camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist, and he ate locusts and wild honey. He proclaimed, “The one who is more powerful than I is coming after me; I am not worthy to stoop down and untie the thong of his sandals. I have baptized you with water; but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 2, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 2, 2014: Today our passages are Daniel 9:1–11:1; 1 John 2:18–3:6; Psalm 121:1-8; and Proverbs 28:27-28 . The readings are from The Message b...

Monday, December 1, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 1, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for December 1, 2014: Today our passages are Daniel 8:1-27; 1 John 2:1-17; Psalm 120:1-7; and Proverbs 28:25-26 . The readings are from The Message by E...

Sunday, November 30, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 30, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 30, 2014: Today our passages are Daniel 7:1-28; 1 John 1:1-10; Psalm 119:153-176; and Proverbs 28:23-24 . The readings are from The Message b...

Saturday, November 29, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 29, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 29, 2014: Today our passages are Daniel 6:1-28; 2 Peter 3:1-18; Psalm 119:129-152; and Proverbs 28:21-22 . The readings are from The Message ...

Friday, November 28, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 28, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 28, 2014: Today our passages are Daniel 5:1-31; 2 Peter 2:1-22; Psalm 119:113-128; and Proverbs 28:19-20 . The readings are from The Message ...

Thursday, November 27, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 27, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 27, 2014: Today our passages are Daniel 4:1-37; 2 Peter 1:1-21; Psalm 119:97-112; and Proverbs 28:17-18. The readings are from The Message b...

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 26, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 26, 2014: Today our passages are Daniel 2:24–3:30; 1 Peter 4:7–5:14; Psalm 119:81-96; and Proverbs 28:15-16. The readings are from The Message...

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

The Lectionary Passages for Sunday, November 30, 2014

Below are NRSV translations of the lessons from the Psalms (Psalm 80:1-7, 17-19), Old Testament (Isaiah 64:1-9), the Letters (1 Corinthians 1:3-9), and the Gospels (Mark 13:24-37) Please make any comments concerning the passages you want. Together, let's discuss the Word of God.

Psalm 80:1-7, 17-19

Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel, you who lead Joseph like a flock! You who are enthroned upon the cherubim, shine forth

before Ephraim and Benjamin and Manasseh. Stir up your might, and come to save us!

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

O Lord God of hosts, how long will you be angry with your people’s prayers?

You have fed them with the bread of tears, and given them tears to drink in full measure.

You make us the scorn of our neighbors; our enemies laugh among themselves.

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

But let your hand be upon the one at your right hand, the one whom you made strong for yourself.

Then we will never turn back from you; give us life, and we will call on your name.

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

Isaiah 64:1-9

O that you would tear open the heavens and come down, so that the mountains would quake at your presence— as when fire kindles brushwood and the fire causes water to boil— to make your name known to your adversaries, so that the nations might tremble at your presence! When you did awesome deeds that we did not expect, you came down, the mountains quaked at your presence. From ages past no one has heard, no ear has perceived, no eye has seen any God besides you, who works for those who wait for him. You meet those who gladly do right, those who remember you in your ways. But you were angry, and we sinned; because you hid yourself we transgressed.

We have all become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous deeds are like a filthy cloth. We all fade like a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, take us away. There is no one who calls on your name, or attempts to take hold of you; for you have hidden your face from us, and have delivered us into the hand of our iniquity. Yet, O Lord, you are our Father; we are the clay, and you are our potter; we are all the work of your hand. Do not be exceedingly angry, O Lord, and do not remember iniquity forever. Now consider, we are all your people.

1 Corinthians 1:3-9

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. I give thanks to my God always for you because of the grace of God that has been given you in Christ Jesus, for in every way you have been enriched in him, in speech and knowledge of every kind— just as the testimony of Christ has been strengthened among you— so that you are not lacking in any spiritual gift as you wait for the revealing of our Lord Jesus Christ. He will also strengthen you to the end, so that you may be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful; by him you were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Mark 13:24-37

“But in those days, after that suffering,

the sun will be darkened,
and the moon will not give its light,
and the stars will be falling from heaven,
and the powers in the heavens will be shaken.

Then they will see ‘the Son of Man coming in clouds’ with great power and glory. Then he will send out the angels, and gather his elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of heaven.
“From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near. So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that he is near, at the very gates. Truly I tell you, this generation will not pass away until all these things have taken place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.

“But about that day or hour no one knows, neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Beware, keep alert; for you do not know when the time will come. It is like a man going on a journey, when he leaves home and puts his slaves in charge, each with his work, and commands the doorkeeper to be on the watch. Therefore, keep awake—for you do not know when the master of the house will come, in the evening, or at midnight, or at cockcrow, or at dawn, or else he may find you asleep when he comes suddenly. And what I say to you I say to all: Keep awake.”

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 25, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 25, 2014: Today our passages are Daniel 1:1–2:23; 1 Peter 3:8–4:6; Psalm 119:65-80; and Proverbs 28:14. The readings are from The Message b...

Monday, November 24, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 24, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 24, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 47:1– 48:35; 1 Peter 2:11–3:7; Psalm 119:49-64; and Proverbs 28:12-13. The readings are from The Me...

Sunday, November 23, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 23, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 23, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 45:13–46:24; 1 Peter 1:13–2:10; Psalm 119:33-48; and Proverbs 28:11. The readings are from The Mess...

Saturday, November 22, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 22, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 22, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 44:1– 45:12; 1 Peter 1:1-12; Psalm 119:17-32; and Proverbs 28:8-10. The readings are from The Messa...

Friday, November 21, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 21, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 21, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 42:1– 43:27; James 5:1-20; Psalm 119:1-16; and Proverbs 28:6-7. The readings are from The Message ...

Thursday, November 20, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 20, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 20, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 40:28–41:26; James 4:1-17; Psalm 118:19-29; and Proverbs 28:3-5. The readings are from The Message b...

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

The Lectionary Passages for Sunday, November 23, 2014

Below are NRSV translations of the lessons from the Psalms (Psalm 100), Old Testament (Ezekiel 34:11-16, 20-24), the Letters (Ephesians 1:15-23), and the Gospels (Matthew 25:31-46). Please make any comments concerning the passages you want. Together, let's discuss the Word of God.

Psalm 100

Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth.

Worship the Lord with gladness; come into his presence with singing.

Know that the Lord is God. It is he that made us, and we are his; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise. Give thanks to him, bless his name.

For the Lord is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations.

Ezekiel 34:11-16, 20-24

For thus says the Lord God: I myself will search for my sheep, and will seek them out. As shepherds seek out their flocks when they are among their scattered sheep, so I will seek out my sheep. I will rescue them from all the places to which they have been scattered on a day of clouds and thick darkness. I will bring them out from the peoples and gather them from the countries, and will bring them into their own land; and I will feed them on the mountains of Israel, by the watercourses, and in all the inhabited parts of the land. I will feed them with good pasture, and the mountain heights of Israel shall be their pasture; there they shall lie down in good grazing land, and they shall feed on rich pasture on the mountains of Israel. I myself will be the shepherd of my sheep, and I will make them lie down, says the Lord God. I will seek the lost, and I will bring back the strayed, and I will bind up the injured, and I will strengthen the weak, but the fat and the strong I will destroy. I will feed them with justice. Therefore, thus says the Lord God to them: I myself will judge between the fat sheep and the lean sheep. Because you pushed with flank and shoulder, and butted at all the weak animals with your horns until you scattered them far and wide, I will save my flock, and they shall no longer be ravaged; and I will judge between sheep and sheep. I will set up over them one shepherd, my servant David, and he shall feed them: he shall feed them and be their shepherd. And I, the Lord, will be their God, and my servant David shall be prince among them; I, the Lord, have spoken.

Ephesians 1:15-23

I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, and for this reason I do not cease to give thanks for you as I remember you in my prayers. I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know him, so that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe, according to the working of his great power. God put this power to work in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the age to come. And he has put all things under his feet and has made him the head over all things for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.

Matthew 25:31-46

“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, and he will put the sheep at his right hand and the goats at the left. Then the king will say to those at his right hand, ‘Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?’ And the king will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.’ Then he will say to those at his left hand, ‘You that are accursed, depart from me into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels; for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’ Then they also will answer, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you?’ Then he will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 19, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 19, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 39:1– 40:27; James 2:18–3:18; Psalm 118:1-18; and Proverbs 28:2.  The readings are from  The Message  b...

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 18, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 18, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 37:1-38:23; James 1:19–2:17; Psalm 117:1-2; and Proverbs 28:1. The readings are from The Message by...

Monday, November 17, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 17, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 17, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 35:1–36:38; James 1:1-18; Psalm 116:1-19; and Proverbs 27:23-27. The readings are from The Message ...

Sunday, November 16, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 16, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 16, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 33:1–34:31; Hebrews 13:1-25; Psalm 115:1-18; and Proverbs 27:21-22 . The readings are from The Messag...

Saturday, November 15, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 15, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 15, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 31:1–32:32; Hebrews 12:14-29; Psalm 113:1–114:8; and Proverbs 27:18-20 . The readings are from The Me...

Friday, November 14, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 14, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 14, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 29:1–30:26; Hebrews 11:32–12:13; Psalm 112:1-10; and Proverbs 27:17 . The readings are from The Messa...

Thursday, November 13, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 13, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 13, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 27:1–28:26; Hebrews 11:17-31; Psalm 111:1-10; and Proverbs 27:15-16 . The readings are from The Messa...

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 12, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 12, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 24:1–26:21; Hebrews 11:1-16; Psalm 110:1-7; and Proverbs 27:14 . The readings are from The Message b...

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 12, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 12, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 24:1–26:21; Hebrews 11:1-16; Psalm 110:1-7; and Proverbs 27:14 . The readings are from The Message b...

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The Lectionary Passages for Sunday, November 16, 2014

Below are NRSV translations of the lessons from the Psalms (Psalm 123), Old Testament (Judges 4:1-7), the Letters (1 Thessalonians 5:1-11), and the Gospels (Matthew 25:14-30). Please make any comments concerning the passages you want. Together, let's discuss the Word of God.

Psalm 123

To you I lift up my eyes, O you who are enthroned in the heavens!

As the eyes of servants look to the hand of their master, as the eyes of a maid to the hand of her mistress, so our eyes look to the Lord our God, until he has mercy upon us.

Have mercy upon us, O Lord, have mercy upon us, for we have had more than enough of contempt.

Our soul has had more than its fill of the scorn of those who are at ease, of the contempt of the proud.



Judges 4:1-7

The Israelites again did what was evil in the sight of the Lord, after Ehud died. So the Lord sold them into the hand of King Jabin of Canaan, who reigned in Hazor; the commander of his army was Sisera, who lived in Harosheth-ha-goiim. Then the Israelites cried out to the Lord for help; for he had nine hundred chariots of iron, and had oppressed the Israelites cruelly twenty years.

At that time Deborah, a prophetess, wife of Lappidoth, was judging Israel. She used to sit under the palm of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in the hill country of Ephraim; and the Israelites came up to her for judgment. She sent and summoned Barak son of Abinoam from Kedesh in Naphtali, and said to him, “The Lord, the God of Israel, commands you, ‘Go, take position at Mount Tabor, bringing ten thousand from the tribe of Naphtali and the tribe of Zebulun. I will draw out Sisera, the general of Jabin’s army, to meet you by the Wadi Kishon with his chariots and his troops; and I will give him into your hand.’”





1 Thessalonians 5:1-11

Now concerning the times and the seasons, brothers and sisters, you do not need to have anything written to you. For you yourselves know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. When they say, “There is peace and security,” then sudden destruction will come upon them, as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and there will be no escape! But you, beloved, are not in darkness, for that day to surprise you like a thief; for you are all children of light and children of the day; we are not of the night or of darkness.

So then let us not fall asleep as others do, but let us keep awake and be sober; for those who sleep sleep at night, and those who are drunk get drunk at night. But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, and put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation. For God has destined us not for wrath but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, so that whether we are awake or asleep we may live with him.

Therefore encourage one another and build up each other, as indeed you are doing.

Matthew 25:14-30

“For it is as if a man, going on a journey, summoned his slaves and entrusted his property to them; to one he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to his ability. Then he went away. The one who had received the five talents went off at once and traded with them, and made five more talents. In the same way, the one who had the two talents made two more talents. But the one who had received the one talent went off and dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money. After a long time the master of those slaves came and settled accounts with them. Then the one who had received the five talents came forward, bringing five more talents, saying, ‘Master, you handed over to me five talents; see, I have made five more talents.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and trustworthy slave; you have been trustworthy in a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.’ And the one with the two talents also came forward, saying, ‘Master, you handed over to me two talents; see, I have made two more talents.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and trustworthy slave; you have been trustworthy in a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.’ Then the one who had received the one talent also came forward, saying, ‘Master, I knew that you were a harsh man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you did not scatter seed; so I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here you have what is yours.’ But his master replied, ‘You wicked and lazy slave! You knew, did you, that I reap where I did not sow, and gather where I did not scatter? Then you ought to have invested my money with the bankers, and on my return I would have received what was my own with interest. So take the talent from him, and give it to the one with the ten talents. For to all those who have, more will be given, and they will have an abundance; but from those who have nothing, even what they have will be taken away. As for this worthless slave, throw him into the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 11, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 11, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 23:1-49; Hebrews 10:18-39; Psalm 109:1-31; and Proverbs 27:13 . The readings are from The Message by...

Monday, November 10, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 10, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 10, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 21:1–22:31; Hebrews 10:1-17; Psalm 108:1-13; and Proverbs 27:12 . The readings are from The Message b...

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 10, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 10, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 21:1–22:31; Hebrews 10:1-17; Psalm 108:1-13; and Proverbs 27:12 . The readings are from The Message b...

Sunday, November 9, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 9, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 9, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 20:1-49; Hebrews 9:11-28; Psalm 107:1-43; and Proverbs 27:11 . The readings are from The Message b...

Saturday, November 8, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 8, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 8, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 18:1–19:14; Hebrews 9:1-10; Psalm 106:32-48; and Proverbs 27:10 . The readings are from The Message ...

Friday, November 7, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 7, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 7, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 16:43–17:24; Hebrews 8:1-13; Psalm 106:13-31; and Proverbs 27:7-9 . The readings are from The Messag...

Thursday, November 6, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 6, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 6, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 14:12–16:42; Hebrews 7:18-28; Psalm 106:1-12; and Proverbs 27:4-6 . The readings are from The Messag...

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

The Lectionary Passages for Sunday, November 9, 2014

Below are NRSV translations of the lessons from the Psalms (Psalm 78:1-7), Old Testament (Joshua 24:1-3a, 14-25), the Letters (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18), and the Gospels (Matthew 25:1-13). Please make any comments concerning the passages you want. Together, let's discuss the Word of God.

Psalm 78:1-7

Give ear, O my people, to my teaching; incline your ears to the words of my mouth.

I will open my mouth in a parable; I will utter dark sayings from of old,

things that we have heard and known, that our ancestors have told us.

We will not hide them from their children; we will tell to the coming generation the glorious deeds of the Lord, and his might, and the wonders that he has done.

He established a decree in Jacob, and appointed a law in Israel, which he commanded our ancestors to teach to their children;

that the next generation might know them, the children yet unborn, and rise up and tell them to their children,

so that they should set their hope in God, and not forget the works of God, but keep his commandments;

Joshua 24:1-3a, 14-25

Then Joshua gathered all the tribes of Israel to Shechem, and summoned the elders, the heads, the judges, and the officers of Israel; and they presented themselves before God. And Joshua said to all the people, “Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel: Long ago your ancestors—Terah and his sons Abraham and Nahor—lived beyond the Euphrates and served other gods. Then I took your father Abraham from beyond the River and led him through all the land of Canaan and made his offspring many. I gave him Isaac; “Now therefore revere the Lord, and serve him in sincerity and in faithfulness; put away the gods that your ancestors served beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the Lord.

Now if you are unwilling to serve the Lord, choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served in the region beyond the River or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living; but as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.” Then the people answered, “Far be it from us that we should forsake the Lord to serve other gods; for it is the Lord our God who brought us and our ancestors up from the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery, and who did those great signs in our sight. He protected us along all the way that we went, and among all the peoples through whom we passed; and the Lord drove out before us all the peoples, the Amorites who lived in the land. Therefore we also will serve the Lord, for he is our God.” But Joshua said to the people, “You cannot serve the Lord, for he is a holy God. He is a jealous God; he will not forgive your transgressions or your sins. If you forsake the Lord and serve foreign gods, then he will turn and do you harm, and consume you, after having done you good.” And the people said to Joshua, “No, we will serve the Lord!” Then Joshua said to the people, “You are witnesses against yourselves that you have chosen the Lord, to serve him.” And they said, “We are witnesses.” He said, “Then put away the foreign gods that are among you, and incline your hearts to the Lord, the God of Israel.” The people said to Joshua, “The Lord our God we will serve, and him we will obey.” So Joshua made a covenant with the people that day, and made statutes and ordinances for them at Shechem.

1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers and sisters, about those who have died, so that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope. For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have died. For this we declare to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will by no means precede those who have died. For the Lord himself, with a cry of command, with the archangel’s call and with the sound of God’s trumpet, will descend from heaven, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up in the clouds together with them to meet the Lord in the air; and so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage one another with these words.

Matthew 25:1-13

“Then the kingdom of heaven will be like this. Ten bridesmaids took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. When the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them; but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps. As the bridegroom was delayed, all of them became drowsy and slept. But at midnight there was a shout, ‘Look! Here is the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.’ Then all those bridesmaids got up and trimmed their lamps. The foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ But the wise replied, ‘No! there will not be enough for you and for us; you had better go to the dealers and buy some for yourselves.’ And while they went to buy it, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went with him into the wedding banquet; and the door was shut. Later the other bridesmaids came also, saying, ‘Lord, lord, open to us.’ But he replied, ‘Truly I tell you, I do not know you.’ Keep awake therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour.

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 5, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 5, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 12:1–14:11; Hebrews 7:1-17; Psalm 105:37-45; and Proverbs 27:3 . The readings are from The Message b...

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 4, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 4, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 10:1–11:25; Hebrews 6:1-20; Psalm 105:16-36; and Proverbs 27:1-2 . The readings are from The Messa...

Monday, November 3, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 3, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 3, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 7:1–9:11; Hebrews 5:1-14; Psalm 105:1-15; and Proverbs 26:28 . The readings are from The Message by ...

Sunday, November 2, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 2, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 2, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 3:16–6:14; Hebrews 4:1-16; Psalm 104:24-35; and Proverbs 26:27 . The readings are from The Message by...

Saturday, November 1, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 1, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for November 1, 2014: Today our passages are Ezekiel 1:1–3:15; Hebrews 3:1-19; Psalm 104:1-23; and Proverbs 26:24-26 . The readings are from The Message ...

Friday, October 31, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 31, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 31, 2014: Today our passages are Lamentations 4:1–5:22; Hebrews 2:1-18; Psalm 103:1-22; and Proverbs 26:23 . The readings are from The Mess...

Thursday, October 30, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 30, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 30, 2014: Today our passages are Lamentations 2:20–3:66; Hebrews 1:1-14; Psalm 102:1-28; and Proverbs 26:21-22 . The readings are from The M...

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The Lectionary Passages for Sunday, November 2, 2014

Below are NRSV translations of the lessons from the Psalms (Psalm 107:1-7, 33-37), Old Testament (Joshua 3.7-17), the Letters (1 Thessalonians 2:9-13), and the Gospels (Matthew 23:1-12). Please make any comments concerning the passages you want. Together, let's discuss the Word of God.

Psalm 107:1-7, 33-37

O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever.
Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, those he redeemed from trouble
and gathered in from the lands, from the east and from the west, from the north and from the south.
Some wandered in desert wastes, finding no way to an inhabited town;
hungry and thirsty, their soul fainted within them.
Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress;
he led them by a straight way, until they reached an inhabited town.
He turns rivers into a desert, springs of water into thirsty ground,
a fruitful land into a salty waste, because of the wickedness of its inhabitants.
He turns a desert into pools of water, a parched land into springs of water.
And there he lets the hungry live, and they establish a town to live in;
they sow fields, and plant vineyards, and get a fruitful yield.

Joshua 3:7-17

The Lord said to Joshua, “This day I will begin to exalt you in the sight of all Israel, so that they may know that I will be with you as I was with Moses. You are the one who shall command the priests who bear the ark of the covenant, ‘When you come to the edge of the waters of the Jordan, you shall stand still in the Jordan.’” Joshua then said to the Israelites, “Draw near and hear the words of the Lord your God.” Joshua said, “By this you shall know that among you is the living God who without fail will drive out from before you the Canaanites, Hittites, Hivites, Perizzites, Girgashites, Amorites, and Jebusites: the ark of the covenant of the Lord of all the earth is going to pass before you into the Jordan. So now select twelve men from the tribes of Israel, one from each tribe. When the soles of the feet of the priests who bear the ark of the Lord, the Lord of all the earth, rest in the waters of the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan flowing from above shall be cut off; they shall stand in a single heap.”

When the people set out from their tents to cross over the Jordan, the priests bearing the ark of the covenant were in front of the people. Now the Jordan overflows all its banks throughout the time of harvest. So when those who bore the ark had come to the Jordan, and the feet of the priests bearing the ark were dipped in the edge of the water, the waters flowing from above stood still, rising up in a single heap far off at Adam, the city that is beside Zarethan, while those flowing toward the sea of the Arabah, the Dead Sea, were wholly cut off. Then the people crossed over opposite Jericho. While all Israel were crossing over on dry ground, the priests who bore the ark of the covenant of the Lord stood on dry ground in the middle of the Jordan, until the entire nation finished crossing over the Jordan.

1 Thessalonians 2:9-13

You remember our labor and toil, brothers and sisters; we worked night and day, so that we might not burden any of you while we proclaimed to you the gospel of God. You are witnesses, and God also, how pure, upright, and blameless our conduct was toward you believers. As you know, we dealt with each one of you like a father with his children, urging and encouraging you and pleading that you lead a life worthy of God, who calls you into his own kingdom and glory.

We also constantly give thanks to God for this, that when you received the word of God that you heard from us, you accepted it not as a human word but as what it really is, God’s word, which is also at work in you believers.

Matthew 23:1-12

Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, “The scribes and the Pharisees sit on Moses’ seat; therefore, do whatever they teach you and follow it; but do not do as they do, for they do not practice what they teach. They tie up heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on the shoulders of others; but they themselves are unwilling to lift a finger to move them. They do all their deeds to be seen by others; for they make their phylacteries broad and their fringes long. They love to have the place of honor at banquets and the best seats in the synagogues, and to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces, and to have people call them rabbi. But you are not to be called rabbi, for you have one teacher, and you are all students. And call no one your father on earth, for you have one Father—the one in heaven. Nor are you to be called instructors, for you have one instructor, the Messiah. The greatest among you will be your servant. All who exalt themselves will be humbled, and all who humble themselves will be exalted.

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 29, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 29, 2014: Today our passages are Lamentations 1:1–2:19; Philemon 1-25; Psalm 101:1-8; and Proverbs 26:20 . The readings are from The Message ...

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 29, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 29, 2014: Today our passages are Lamentations 1:1–2:19; Philemon 1-25; Psalm 101:1-8; and Proverbs 26:20 . The readings are from The Message ...

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 28, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 28, 2014: Today our passages are Jeremiah 51:54–52:34; Titus 3:1-15; Psalm 100:1-5; and Proverbs 26:18-19 . The readings are from The Messag...

Monday, October 27, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 27, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 27, 2014: Today our passages are Jeremiah 51:1-53; Titus 2:1-15; Psalm 99:1-9; and Proverbs 26:17 . The readings are from The Message by E...

Sunday, October 26, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 26, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 26, 2014: Today our passages are Jeremiah 49:23–50:46; Titus 1:1-6; Psalm 97:1–98:9; and Proverbs 26:13-16 . The readings are from The Messa...

Saturday, October 25, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 25, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 25, 2014: Today our passages are Jeremiah 48:1–49:22; 2 Timothy 4:1-22; Psalm 95:1–96:13; and Proverbs 26:9-12 . The readings are from The ...

Friday, October 24, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 24, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 24, 2014: Today our passages are Jeremiah 44:24–47:7; 2 Timothy 2:22–3:17; Psalm 94:1-23; and Proverbs 26:6-8 . The readings are from The ...

Thursday, October 23, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 23, 2014

The Bible in a Year: Bible Readings for October 23, 2014: Today our passages are Jeremiah 42:1–44:23; 2 Timothy 2:1-21; Psalm 92:1–93:5; and Proverbs 26:3-5 . The readings are from The M...

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

The Lectionary Passages for Sunday, October 26, 2014

Below are NRSV translations of the lessons from the Psalms (Psalm 90:1-6, 13-17), Old Testament (Deuteronomy 34:1-12), the Letters (1 Thessalonians 2:1-8), and the Gospels (Matthew 22:34-46). Please make any comments concerning the passages you want. Together, let's discuss the Word of God.

Psalm 90:1-6, 13-17

Lord, you have been our dwelling place in all generations.

Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever you had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God.

You turn us back to dust, and say, “Turn back, you mortals.”

For a thousand years in your sight are like yesterday when it is past, or like a watch in the night.

You sweep them away; they are like a dream, like grass that is renewed in the morning;

in the morning it flourishes and is renewed; in the evening it fades and withers.

Turn, O Lord! How long? Have compassion on your servants!

Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, so that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.

Make us glad as many days as you have afflicted us, and as many years as we have seen evil.

Let your work be manifest to your servants, and your glorious power to their children.

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!

Deuteronomy 34:1-12

Then Moses went up from the plains of Moab to Mount Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, which is opposite Jericho, and the Lord showed him the whole land: Gilead as far as Dan, all Naphtali, the land of Ephraim and Manasseh, all the land of Judah as far as the Western Sea, the Negeb, and the Plain—that is, the valley of Jericho, the city of palm trees—as far as Zoar. The Lord said to him, “This is the land of which I swore to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, saying, ‘I will give it to your descendants’; I have let you see it with your eyes, but you shall not cross over there.”

Then Moses, the servant of the Lord, died there in the land of Moab, at the Lord’s command. He was buried in a valley in the land of Moab, opposite Beth-peor, but no one knows his burial place to this day. Moses was one hundred twenty years old when he died; his sight was unimpaired and his vigor had not abated. The Israelites wept for Moses in the plains of Moab thirty days; then the period of mourning for Moses was ended.

Joshua son of Nun was full of the spirit of wisdom, because Moses had laid his hands on him; and the Israelites obeyed him, doing as the Lord had commanded Moses. Never since has there arisen a prophet in Israel like Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face. He was unequaled for all the signs and wonders that the Lord sent him to perform in the land of Egypt, against Pharaoh and all his servants and his entire land, and for all the mighty deeds and all the terrifying displays of power that Moses performed in the sight of all Israel.

1 Thessalonians 2:1-8

You yourselves know, brothers and sisters, that our coming to you was not in vain, but though we had already suffered and been shamefully mistreated at Philippi, as you know, we had courage in our God to declare to you the gospel of God in spite of great opposition. For our appeal does not spring from deceit or impure motives or trickery, but just as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the message of the gospel, even so we speak, not to please mortals, but to please God who tests our hearts. As you know and as God is our witness, we never came with words of flattery or with a pretext for greed; nor did we seek praise from mortals, whether from you or from others,

though we might have made demands as apostles of Christ. But we were gentle among you, like a nurse tenderly caring for her own children. So deeply do we care for you that we are determined to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you have become very dear to us.

Matthew 22:34-46

When the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together, and one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. “Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?” He said to him, “’You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the greatest and first commandment. And a second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”

Now while the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them this question: “What do you think of the Messiah? Whose son is he?” They said to him, “The son of David.” He said to them, “How is it then that David by the Spirit calls him Lord, saying, ‘The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at my right hand, until I put your enemies under your feet”’? If David thus calls him Lord, how can he be his son?” No one was able to give him an answer, nor from that day did anyone dare to ask him any more questions.