Selected Scripture Readings

July 15, 2018
EPISTLE: Corinthians (1: 10-18)

Brothers and Sisters! I beg you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, to agree in what you say. Let there be no factions; rather, be united in mind and judgment. I have been informed, my brothers, by certain members of Chloe’s household that you are quarreling among yourselves. This is what I mean: One of you will say, "I belong to Paul,” another, "I belong to Apollos,” still another, "Cephas has my allegiance,” and the fourth, "I belong to Christ.” Has Christ, then, been divided into parts? Was it Paul who was crucified for you? Was it in Paul’s name that you were baptized? Thank God I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius, so there are none who can say that you were baptized in my name. Oh, and I baptized the household of Stephanus. Beyond that, I am not aware of having baptized anyone else. For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel -- not with wordy "wisdom,” however, lest the cross of Christ be rendered void of its meaning. The message of the cross is complete absurdity to those who are headed for ruin, but to us who are experiencing salvation, it is the power of God.

GOSPEL: Matthew (14: 14-22)

At that time as Jesus saw the vast throng, his heart was moved with pity, and he cured their sick. As evening drew on, his disciples came to him with the suggestion: "This is a deserted place and it is already late. Dismiss the crowds so that they may go to the villages and buy some food for themselves.” Jesus said to them: "There is no need for them to disperse. Give them something to eat yourselves.” "We have nothing here,” they replied, "but five loaves and a couple of fish.” "Bring them here,” he said. Then he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass. He took the five loaves and two fish, looked up to heaven, blessed and broke them and gave the loaves to the disciples, who in turn gave them to the people. All those present ate their fill. The fragments remaining, when gathered up, filled twelve baskets. Those who ate were about five thousand, not counting women and children. Immediately afterward, while dismissing the crowds, Jesus insisted that his disciples get into the boat and precede him to the other side.

July 22 2018
EPISTLE: Hebrews (13: 7-16)

Brothers and Sisters: Remember your leaders who spoke the word of God to you; consider how their lives ended, and imitate their faith. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Do not be carried away by all kinds of strange teaching. It is good to have our hearts strengthened by the grace of God and not by foods which are useless to those who take them as a standard for living. We have an altar from which those who serve the tabernacle have no right to eat. The bodies of the animals whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest as a sin offering are burned outside the camp. Therefore Jesus died outside the gate, to sanctify the people by his own blood. Let us go to him outside the camp, bearing the insult which he bore. For here we have no lasting city; we are seeking one which is to come. Through him let us continually offer God a sacrifice of praise, that is, the fruit of lips which acknowledge his name. Do not neglect good deeds and generosity, God is pleased by sacrifices of that kind.

GOSPEL: John (17: 1-13)

At that time Jesus looked up to heaven and said: ''Father, the hour has come! Give glory to your Son that your Son may give glory to you, inasmuch as you have given him authority over all mankind, that he may bestow eternal life on those you gave him. Eternal life is this, to know you, the only true God, and him whom you have sent, Jesus Christ. I have given you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do. Do you now, Father, give me glory at your side, a glory I had with you before the world began. I have made your name known to those you gave me out of the world. These men you gave me were yours; they have kept your word. Now they realize that all that you gave me comes from you. I entrusted to them the message you entrusted to me and they received it. They have known that in truth I came from you, they have believed it was you who sent me. For these I pray -- not for the world but for these you have given me, for they are really yours. Just as all that belongs to me is yours, so all that belongs to you is mine. It is in them that I have been glorified. I am in the world no more, but these are in the world as I come to you. O Father most holy, protect them with your name which you have given me, that they may be one, even as we are one. As long as I was with them, I guarded them with your name which you gave me. I kept careful watch, and not one of them was lost, none but him who was destined to be lost -- in fulfillment of Scripture. Now, however, I come to you; I say all this while I am still in the world that they may share my joy completely.

July 29, 2018
EPISTLE: Corinthians (4: 9-16)

Brothers and Sisters! God has put us apostles at the end of the line, like men doomed to die in the arena. We have become a spectacle to the universe, to angels and men alike. We are fools on Christ’s account. Ah, but in Christ you are wise! We are the weak ones, you the strong! They honor you, while they sneer at us! Up to this very hour we go hungry and thirsty, poorly clad, roughly treated, wandering about homeless. We work hard at manual labor. When we are insulted we respond with a blessing. Persecution comes our way; we bear it patiently. We are slandered, and we try conciliation. We have become the world’s refuse, the scum of all; that is the present state of affairs. I am writing you in this way not to shame you but to admonish you as my beloved children. Granted you have ten thousand guardians in Christ, you have only one father. It was I who begot you in Christ Jesus through my preaching of the gospel. I beg you, then, be imitators of me.

GOSPEL: Matthew (17: 14-23)

At that time a man come up to Jesus and knelt before him. “Lord,” he said, “take pity on my son, who is demented and in a serious condition. For example, he often falls into the fire and frequently into the water. I have brought him to your disciples but they could not cure him.” In reply Jesus said: “What an unbelieving and perverse lot you are! How long must I remain with you? How long can I endure you? Bring him here to me!” Then Jesus reprimanded him, and the demon came out of him. That very moment the boy was cured. The disciples approached Jesus at that point and asked him privately, “Why could we not expel it?” “Because you have so little trust,” he told them. “I assure you, if you had faith the size of a mustard seed, you would be able to say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it would move. Nothing would be impossible for you. This kind does not leave but by prayer and fasting.” When they met again in Galilee, Jesus said to them, “The Son of Man is going to be delivered into the hands of men who will put him to death, and he will be raised up on the third day.”

August 05, 2018
EPISTLE: Corinthians (9: 2-12)

Brothers and Sisters! You are the very seal of my apostolate in the Lord. My defense against those who criticize me is this: Do we not have the right to eat and drink? Do we not have the right to marry a believing woman like the rest of the apostles and the brothers of the Lord and Cephas? Is it only myself and Barnabas who are forced to work for a living? What soldier in the field pays for his rations? Who plants a vineyard and does not eat of its yield? What shepherd does not nourish himself with the milk of his flock? You may think the reasons I am giving are merely human ones, but does not the law itself speak of these things? It is written in the law of Moses, “You shall not muzzle an ox while it treads out grain.” Is God concerned here for oxen, or does he not rather say this for our sakes? You can be sure it was written for us, for the plowman should plow in hope and the harvester expect a share in the grain. If we have sown for you in the spirit, is it too much to expect a material harvest from you? If others have this right over you, is not our right even greater? But we have not used this right. On the contrary, we put up with all sorts of hardships so as not to place any obstacle in the way of the gospel of Christ.

GOSPEL: Matthew (18: 23 -35)

The Lord said: “The reign of God may be said to be like a king who decided to settle accounts with his officials. When he began his auditing, one was brought in who owed him a huge amount. As he had no way of paying it, his master ordered him to be sold, along with his wife, his children, and all his property, in payment of the debt. At that the official prostrated himself in homage and said, ‘My lord, be patient with me and I will pay you back in full.’ Moved with pity, the master let the official go and wrote off the debt. But when that same official went out he met a fellow servant who owed him a mere fraction of what he himself owed. He seized him and throttled him, ‘Pay back what you owe,’ he demanded. His fellow servant dropped to his knees and began to plead with him, ‘Just give me time and I will pay you back in full.’ But he would hear none of it. Instead, he had him put in jail until he paid back what he owed. When his fellow servants saw what had happened they were badly shaken, and went to their master to report the whole incident. His master sent for him and said, ‘You worthless wretch! I canceled your entire debt when you pleaded with me. Should you not have dealt mercifully with your fellow servant, as I dealt with you?’ Then in anger the master handed him over to the torturers until he paid back all that he owed. My heavenly father will treat you in exactly the same way unless each of you forgives his brother from his heart.”

August 12, 2018
EPISTLE: Corinthians (15:1-11)

Brothers and Sisters! I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and in which you stand firm. You are being saved by it at this very moment if you hold fast to it as I preached it to you. Otherwise you have believed in vain. I handed on to you first of all what I myself received that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures; that he was buried and, in accordance with the Scriptures, rose on the third day; that he was seen by Cephas, then by the Twelve. After that he was seen by five hundred brothers at once, most of whom are still alive, although some have fallen asleep. Next he was seen by James; then by all the apostles. Last of all he was seen by me, as one born out of the normal course. I am the least of the apostles; in fact, because I persecuted the church of God, I do not even deserve the name. But by God’s favor I am what I am. This favor of his to me has not proved fruitless. Indeed, I have worked harder than all the others, not on my own but through the favor of God. In any case, whether it be I or they, this what we preach and this what you believed.

GOSPEL: Matthew (19: 16 - 26)

At that time a young man came up to him and said, “Teacher, what good must I do to possess everlasting life?” He answered, “Why do you question me about what is good? There is One who is good. If you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments.” “Which ones?” he asked. Jesus replied, “ ‘You shall not kill’; ‘You shall not commit adultery’; ‘You shall not steal’; ‘You shall not bear false witness’; ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ “ The young man said to him, “I have kept all these; what do I need to do further?” Jesus told him, “If you seek perfection, go, sell your possessions, and give to the poor. You will then have treasure in heaven. Afterward, comeback and follow me.” Hearing these words, the young man went away sad, for his possessions were many. Jesus said to his disciples, “I assure you, only with difficulty will a rich man enter into the kingdom of God. I repeat what I said: it is easier for a camel to pass through a needle’s eye than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” When the disciples heard this they were completely overwhelmed, and exclaimed, “Then who can be saved?” Jesus looked at them and said, “For man it is impossible; but for God all things are possible.”

This page was last updated July 12, 2018
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