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Selected Scripture Readings

February 17, 2019
EPISTLE: Corinthians (6:12-20)

Brothers and Sisters! “Everything is lawful for me’’ -- but that does not mean that everything is good for me. “Everything is lawful for me’’ -- but I will not let myself be enslaved by anything. “Food is for the stomach and the stomach for food, and God will do away with them both in the end-’’ but the body is not for immorality; it is for the Lord, and the Lord is for the body. God, who raised up the Lord, will raise us also by his power. Do you not see that your bodies are members of Christ? Would you have me take Christ’s members and make them the members of a prostitute? God forbid! Can you not see that the man who is joined to a prostitute becomes one body with her? Scripture says, “The two shall become one flesh.’’ But whoever is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with him. Shun lewd conduct. Every other sin a man commits is outside his body, but the fornicator sins against his own body. You must know that your body is temple of the Holy Spirit, who is within -- the Spirit you have received from God. You are not your own. You have been purchased, and at a price. So glorify God in your body.

GOSPEL: Luke (15: 11-32)

At that time the Lord told this parable: “A man had two sons. The younger of them said to his father, ‘Father, give me the share of the estate that is coming to me.’ So the father divided up the property. Some days later this younger son collected all his belongings and went off to a distant land, where he squandered his money on dissolute living. After he had spent everything, a great famine broke out in that country and he was in dire need. So he attached himself to one of the propertied class of the place, who sent him to his farm to take care of the pigs. He longed to fill his belly with the husks that were fodder for the pigs, but no one made a move to give him anything. Coming to his senses at last, he said: ‘How many hired hands at my father’s place have more than enough to eat, while here I am starving! I will break away and return to my father, and say to him, Father, I have sinned against God and against you; I no longer deserve to be called your son. Treat me like one of your hired hands.’ With that he set off for his father’s house. While he was still a long way off, his father caught sight of him and was deeply moved. He ran out to meet him, threw his arms around his neck, and kissed him. The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against God and against you; I no longer deserve to be called your son.’ The father said to his servants; ‘Quick! bring out the finest robe and put it on him; put a ring on his finger and shoes on his feet. Take the fatted calf and kill it. Let us eat and celebrate because this son of mine was dead and has come back to life. He was lost and is found.’ Then the celebration began. Meanwhile the elder son was out on the land. As he neared the house on his way home, he heard the sound of music and dancing. He called one of the servants and asked him the reason for the dancing and the music. The servant answered, ‘Your brother is home, and your father has killed the fatted calf because he has him back in good health.’ The son grew angry at this and would not go in; but his father came out and began to plead with him. He said to his father in reply: ‘For years now I have slaved for you. I never disobeyed one of your orders, yet you never gave me so much as a kid goat to celebrate with my friends. Then, when this son of yours returns after having gone through your property with loose women, you kill the fatted calf for him.’ ‘My Son,’ replied the father, ‘you are with me always, and everything I have is yours. But we had to celebrate and rejoice! This brother of yours was dead, and has come back to life. He was lost, and is found.’ ‘‘

February 24, 2019
EPISTLE: Corinthians (8: 8 -9: 2)

Brothers and Sisters! Now food does not bring us closer to God. We suffer no loss through failing to eat, and we gain no favor by eating. Take care, however, lest in exercising your right you become an occasion of sin to the weak. If someone sees you, with your “knowledge,'' reclining at table in the temple of an idol, may not his conscience in its weak state be influenced to the point that he eats the idol-offering? Because of your “knowledge'' the weak one perishes, that brother for whom Christ died. When you sin thus against your brothers and wound their weak consciences, you are sinning against Christ. Therefore, if food causes my brother to sin I will never eat meat again, so that I many not be an occasion of sin to him. Am I not free? Am I not an apostle? Have I not seen Jesus our Lord? And are you not my work in the Lord Although I may not be an apostle for others, I certainly am one for you. You are the very seal of my apostolate in the Lord.

GOSPEL: Matthew (25: 31-46)

The Lord said: “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, escorted by all the angels of heaven, he will sit upon his royal throne, and all the nations will be assembled before him. Then he will separate them into two groups, as a shepherd separates sheep from goats. The sheep he will place on his right hand, the goats on his left. The king will say to those on his right: ‘Come. You have my Father's blessing! Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food. I was thirsty and you gave me drink. I was a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me. I was ill and you comforted me, in prison and you came to visit me.' Then the just will ask him: ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you or see you thirsty and give you drink? When did we welcome you away from home or clothe you in your nakedness? When did we visit you when you were ill or in prison?' The king will answer them: ‘I assure you, as often as you did it for one of my least brothers, you did it for me.' Then he will say to those on his left: ‘Out of my sight, you condemned, into that everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels! I was hungry and you gave me no food. I was thirsty and you gave me no drink. I was away from home and you gave me no welcome, naked and you gave me no clothing. I was ill and in prison and you did not come to comfort me.' Then they in turn will ask: ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or away from home or naked or ill or in prison and not attend you in your needs?' He will answer them: ‘I assure you, as often as you neglected to do it to one on these least ones, you neglected to do it to me.' These will go off to eternal punishment and the just to eternal life.''

March 3, 2019
EPISTLE: Romans (13: 11 - 14:4)

Brothers and Sisters! Our salvation is closer than when we first accepted the faith. The night is far spent; the day draws near. Let us cast off deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. Let us live honorably as in daylight; not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual excess and lust, not in quarreling and jealousy. Rather, put on the Lord Jesus Christ and make no provision for the desires of the flesh. Extend a kind welcome to those who are weak in faith. Do not enter in disputes with them. A man of sound faith knows he can eat anything, while one who is weak in faith eats only vegetables. The man who will eat anything must not ridicule him who abstains from certain foods; the man who abstains must not sit in judgment on him who eats. After all, God himself has made him welcome. Who are you to pass judgment on another’s servant? His master alone can judge whether he stands or falls. And stand he will, for the Lord is able to make him stand.

GOSPEL: Matthew (6: 14-21)

The Lord said: If you forgive the faults of others, your heavenly Father will forgive you yours. If you do not forgive others, neither will your Father forgive you. When you fast, you are not to look glum as the hypocrites do. They change the appearance of their faces so that others may see they are fasting. I assure you, they are already repaid. When you fast, see to it that you groom your hair and wash your face. In that way no one can see you are fasting but your Father who is hidden; and your Father who sees what is hidden will repay you. Do not lay up for yourselves an earthly treasure. Moths and rust corrode; thieves break in and steal. Make it your practice instead to store up heavenly treasure, which neither moths nor rust corrode nor thieves break in and steal. Remember, where your treasure is there your heart is also.


March 10, 2019
EPISTLE: Hebrews (11: 24-26; 32 - 12:2)

Brothers and Sisters! By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter; he wished to be illtreated along with God’s people rather than enjoy the fleeting rewards of sin. Moses considered the reproach borne by God’s Anointed greater riches than the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking to the reward. What more shall I recount? I have no time to tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the prophets, who by faith conquered kingdoms, did what was just, obtained the promises; they broke the jaws of lions, put out raging fires, escaped the devouring sword; though weak they were made powerful, became strong in battle, and turned back foreign invaders. Women received back their dead through resurrection. Others were tortured and would not receive deliverance, in order to obtain a better resurrection. Still others endured mockery, scourging, even chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, sawed in two, put to death at sword’s point; they went about garbed in the skins of sheep or goats, needy, afflicted, tormented. The world was not worthy of them. They wandered about in deserts and on mountains, they dwelt in caves and in holes of the earth. Yet despite the fact that all of these were approved because of their faith, they did not obtain what had been promised. God had made a better plan, a plan which included us. Without us, they were not to be made perfect. Therefore, since we for our part are surrounded by this cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every encumbrance of sin which clings to us and persevere in running the race which lies ahead. Let us keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, who inspires and perfects our faith.


GOSPEL: John (1: 43-51)

At that time Jesus set out for Galilee, but first he came upon Philip. “Follow me,” Jesus said to him. Now Philip was from Bethsaida, the same town as Andrew and Peter. Philip sought out Nathanael and told him, “We have found the one Moses spoke of in the law -- the prophets too -- Jesus, son of Joseph, from Nazareth.” Nathanael”s response to that was, “Can anything good come from Nazareth?” and Philip replied, “Come, see for yourself.” When Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him, he remarked: “This man is a true Israelite. There is no guile in him.” “How do you know me?” Nathanael asked him. “Before Philip called you,” Jesus answered, “I saw you under the fig tree.” “Rabbi,” said Nathanael, “you are the Son of God; you are the king of Israel.” Jesus responded: “Do you believe just because I told you I saw you under the fig tree? You will see much greater things than that.” He went on to tell them, “I solemnly assure you, you shall see the sky opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man.”

This page was last updated February 16, 2019
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