Daily Readings for Sunday December 16,2018

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Reading 1, Gen 18:1-10 : A son is promised to Abraham

 

1 And the LORD appeared to him by the oaks of Mamre, as he sat at the door of his tent in the heat of the day.
2 He lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, three men stood in front of him. When he saw them, he ran from the tent door to meet them, and bowed himself to the earth,
3 and said, "My lord, if I have found favor in your sight, do not pass by your servant.
4 Let a little water be brought, and wash your feet, and rest yourselves under the tree,
5 while I fetch a morsel of bread, that you may refresh yourselves, and after that you may pass on -- since you have come to your servant." So they said, "Do as you have said."
6 And Abraham hastened into the tent to Sarah, and said, "Make ready quickly three measures of fine meal, knead it, and make cakes."
7 And Abraham ran to the herd, and took a calf, tender and good, and gave it to the servant, who hastened to prepare it.
8 Then he took curds, and milk, and the calf which he had prepared, and set it before them; and he stood by them under the tree while they ate.
9 They said to him, "Where is Sarah your wife?" And he said, "She is in the tent."
10 The LORD said, "I will surely return to you in the spring, and Sarah your wife shall have a son." And Sarah was listening at the tent door behind him.


Reading 2, Judg 13:2-24 : The birth of Samson

 

2 And there was a certain man of Zorah, of the tribe of the Danites, whose name was Mano'ah; and his wife was barren and had no children.
3 And the angel of the LORD appeared to the woman and said to her, "Behold, you are barren and have no children; but you shall conceive and bear a son.
4 Therefore beware, and drink no wine or strong drink, and eat nothing unclean,
5 for lo, you shall conceive and bear a son. No razor shall come upon his head, for the boy shall be a Nazirite to God from birth; and he shall begin to deliver Israel from the hand of the Philistines."
6 Then the woman came and told her husband, "A man of God came to me, and his countenance was like the countenance of the angel of God, very terrible; I did not ask him whence he was, and he did not tell me his name;
7 but he said to me, `Behold, you shall conceive and bear a son; so then drink no wine or strong drink, and eat nothing unclean, for the boy shall be a Nazirite to God from birth to the day of his death.'"
8 Then Mano'ah entreated the LORD, and said, "O, LORD, I pray thee, let the man of God whom thou didst send come again to us, and teach us what we are to do with the boy that will be born."
9 And God listened to the voice of Mano'ah, and the angel of God came again to the woman as she sat in the field; but Mano'ah her husband was not with her.
10 And the woman ran in haste and told her husband, "Behold, the man who came to me the other day has appeared to me."
11 And Mano'ah arose and went after his wife, and came to the man and said to him, "Are you the man who spoke to this woman?" And he said, "I am."
12 And Mano'ah said, "Now when your words come true, what is to be the boy's manner of life, and what is he to do?"
13 And the angel of the LORD said to Mano'ah, "Of all that I said to the woman let her beware.
14 She may not eat of anything that comes from the vine, neither let her drink wine or strong drink, or eat any unclean thing; all that I commanded her let her observe."
15 Mano'ah said to the angel of the LORD, "Pray, let us detain you, and prepare a kid for you."
16 And the angel of the LORD said to Mano'ah, "If you detain me, I will not eat of your food; but if you make ready a burnt offering, then offer it to the LORD." (For Mano'ah did not know that he was the angel of the LORD.)
17 And Mano'ah said to the angel of the LORD, "What is your name, so that, when your words come true, we may honor you?"
18 And the angel of the LORD said to him, "Why do you ask my name, seeing it is wonderful?"
19 So Mano'ah took the kid with the cereal offering, and offered it upon the rock to the LORD, to him who works wonders.
20 And when the flame went up toward heaven from the altar, the angel of the LORD ascended in the flame of the altar while Mano'ah and his wife looked on; and they fell on their faces to the ground.
21 The angel of the LORD appeared no more to Mano'ah and to his wife. Then Mano'ah knew that he was the angel of the LORD.
22 And Mano'ah said to his wife, "We shall surely die, for we have seen God."
23 But his wife said to him, "If the LORD had meant to kill us, he would not have accepted a burnt offering and a cereal offering at our hands, or shown us all these things, or now announced to us such things as these."
24 And the woman bore a son, and called his name Samson; and the boy grew, and the LORD blessed him.


Reading 3, Eph 3:1-13 : Paul, the apostle of gentiles

 

1 For this reason I, Paul, a prisoner for Christ Jesus on behalf of you Gentiles --
2 assuming that you have heard of the stewardship of God's grace that was given to me for you,
3 how the mystery was made known to me by revelation, as I have written briefly.
4 When you read this you can perceive my insight into the mystery of Christ,
5 which was not made known to the sons of men in other generations as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit;
6 that is, how the Gentiles are fellow heirs, members of the same body, and partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel.
7 Of this gospel I was made a minister according to the gift of God's grace which was given me by the working of his power.
8 To me, though I am the very least of all the saints, this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ,
9 and to make all men see what is the plan of the mystery hidden for ages in God who created all things;
10 that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places.
11 This was according to the eternal purpose which he has realized in Christ Jesus our Lord,
12 in whom we have boldness and confidence of access through our faith in him.
13 So I ask you not to lose heart over what I am suffering for you, which is your glory.


Gospel, Lk 1:57-66 : Birth of John the Baptist

 

57 Now the time came for Elizabeth to be delivered, and she gave birth to a son.
58 And her neighbors and kinsfolk heard that the Lord had shown great mercy to her, and they rejoiced with her.
59 And on the eighth day they came to circumcise the child; and they would have named him Zechari'ah after his father,
60 but his mother said, "Not so; he shall be called John."
61 And they said to her, "None of your kindred is called by this name."
62 And they made signs to his father, inquiring what he would have him called.
63 And he asked for a writing tablet, and wrote, "His name is John." And they all marveled.
64 And immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue loosed, and he spoke, blessing God.
65 And fear came on all their neighbors. And all these things were talked about through all the hill country of Judea;
66 and all who heard them laid them up in their hearts, saying, "What then will this child be?" For the hand of the Lord was with him.


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