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The Daily Readings for October 30, 2013

We've included both the Morning and Evening Psalms for the Daily Office; they are listed after the other readings. If you'd like to filter for a particular day's readings, you can do it at The Daily Readings Anytime.

Ezra 6:1-22

Then King Darius made a decree, and they searched the archives where the documents were stored in Babylon. But it was in Ecbatana, the capital in the province of Media, that a scroll was found on which this was written: "A record. In the first year of his reign, King Cyrus issued a decree: Concerning the house of God at Jerusalem, let the house be rebuilt, the place where sacrifices are offered and burnt offerings are brought; its height shall be sixty cubits and its width sixty cubits, with three courses of hewn stones and one course of timber; let the cost be paid from the royal treasury. Moreover, let the gold and silver vessels of the house of God, which Nebuchadnezzar took out of the temple in Jerusalem and brought to Babylon, be restored and brought back to the temple in Jerusalem, each to its place; you shall put them in the house of God." "Now you, Tattenai, governor of the province Beyond the River, Shethar-bozenai, and you, their associates, the envoys in the province Beyond the River, keep away; let the work on this house of God alone; let the governor of the Jews and the elders of the Jews rebuild this house of God on its site. Moreover I make a decree regarding what you shall do for these elders of the Jews for the rebuilding of this house of God: the cost is to be paid to these people, in full and without delay, from the royal revenue, the tribute of the province Beyond the River. Whatever is needed-- young bulls, rams, or sheep for burnt offerings to the God of heaven, wheat, salt, wine, or oil, as the priests in Jerusalem require-- let that be given to them day by day without fail, so that they may offer pleasing sacrifices to the God of heaven, and pray for the life of the king and his children. Furthermore I decree that if anyone alters this edict, a beam shall be pulled out of the house of the perpetrator, who then shall be impaled on it. The house shall be made a dunghill. May the God who has established his name there overthrow any king or people that shall put forth a hand to alter this, or to destroy this house of God in Jerusalem. I, Darius, make a decree; let it be done with all diligence." Then, according to the word sent by King Darius, Tattenai, the governor of the province Beyond the River, Shethar-bozenai, and their associates did with all diligence what King Darius had ordered. So the elders of the Jews built and prospered, through the prophesying of the prophet Haggai and Zechariah son of Iddo. They finished their building by command of the God of Israel and by decree of Cyrus, Darius, and King Artaxerxes of Persia; and this house was finished on the third day of the month of Adar, in the sixth year of the reign of King Darius. The people of Israel, the priests and the Levites, and the rest of the returned exiles, celebrated the dedication of this house of God with joy. They offered at the dedication of this house of God one hundred bulls, two hundred rams, four hundred lambs, and as a sin offering for all Israel, twelve male goats, according to the number of the tribes of Israel. Then they set the priests in their divisions and the Levites in their courses for the service of God at Jerusalem, as it is written in the book of Moses. On the fourteenth day of the first month the returned exiles kept the passover. For both the priests and the Levites had purified themselves; all of them were clean. So they killed the passover lamb for all the returned exiles, for their fellow priests, and for themselves. It was eaten by the people of Israel who had returned from exile, and also by all who had joined them and separated themselves from the pollutions of the nations of the land to worship the LORD, the God of Israel. With joy they celebrated the festival of unleavened bread seven days; for the LORD had made them joyful, and had turned the heart of the king of Assyria to them, so that he aided them in the work on the house of God, the God of Israel.

Revelation 5:1-10

Then I saw in the right hand of the one seated on the throne a scroll written on the inside and on the back, sealed with seven seals; and I saw a mighty angel proclaiming with a loud voice, "Who is worthy to open the scroll and break its seals?" And no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth was able to open the scroll or to look into it. And I began to weep bitterly because no one was found worthy to open the scroll or to look into it. Then one of the elders said to me, "Do not weep. See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has conquered, so that he can open the scroll and its seven seals." Then I saw between the throne and the four living creatures and among the elders a Lamb standing as if it had been slaughtered, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. He went and took the scroll from the right hand of the one who was seated on the throne. When he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell before the Lamb, each holding a harp and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. They sing a new song: "You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slaughtered and by your blood you ransomed for God saints from every tribe and language and people and nation; you have made them to be a kingdom and priests serving our God, and they will reign on earth."

Matthew 13:10-17

Then the disciples came and asked him, "Why do you speak to them in parables?" He answered, "To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given. For to 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. The reason I speak to them in parables is that 'seeing they do not perceive, and hearing they do not listen, nor do they understand.' With them indeed is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah that says: 'You will indeed listen, but never understand, and you will indeed look, but never perceive. For this people's heart has grown dull, and their ears are hard of hearing, and they have shut their eyes; so that they might not look with their eyes, and listen with their ears, and understand with their heart and turn-- and I would heal them.' But blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear. Truly I tell you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see, but did not see it, and to hear what you hear, but did not hear it.

Morning Psalms

Psalm 119: Zayin Memor esto verbi tui
49   Remember your word to your servant, *
because you have given me hope.
50   This is my comfort in my trouble, *
that your promise gives me life.
51   The proud have derided me cruelly, *
but I have not turned from your law.
52   When I remember your judgments of old, *
O LORD, I take great comfort.
53   I am filled with a burning rage, *
because of the wicked who forsake your law.
54   Your statutes have been like songs to me *
wherever I have lived as a stranger.
55   I remember your Name in the night, O LORD, *
and dwell upon your law.
56   This is how it has been with me, *
because I have kept your commandments.

Psalm 119: Heth Portio mea, Domine
57   You only are my portion, O LORD; *
I have promised to keep your words.
58   I entreat you with all my heart, *
be merciful to me according to your promise.
59   I have considered my ways *
and turned my feet toward your decrees.
60   I hasten and do not tarry *
to keep your commandments.
61   Though the cords of the wicked entangle me, *
I do not forget your law.
62   At midnight I will rise to give you thanks, *
because of your righteous judgments.
63   I am a companion of all who fear you *
and of those who keep your commandments.
64   The earth, O LORD, is full of your love; *
instruct me in your statutes.

Psalm 119: Teth Bonitatem fecisti
65   O LORD, you have dealt graciously with your servant, *
according to your word.
66   Teach me discernment and knowledge, *
for I have believed in your commandments.
67   Before I was afflicted I went astray, *
but now I keep your word.
68   You are good and you bring forth good; *
instruct me in your statutes.
69   The proud have smeared me with lies, *
but I will keep your commandments with my whole heart.
70   Their heart is gross and fat, *
but my delight is in your law.
71   It is good for me that I have been afflicted, *
that I might learn your statutes.
72   The law of your mouth is dearer to me *
than thousands in gold and silver.

Evening Psalms

Psalm 49 Audite haec, omnes

  Hear this, all you peoples; hearken, all you who dwell in the world, *
you of high degree and low, rich and poor together.
  My mouth shall speak of wisdom, *
and my heart shall meditate on understanding.
  I will incline my ear to a proverb *
and set forth my riddle upon the harp.
  Why should I be afraid in evil days, *
when the wickedness of those at my heels surrounds me,
  The wickedness of those who put their trust in their goods, *
and boast of their great riches?
  We can never ransom ourselves, *
or deliver to God the price of our life;
  For the ransom of our life is so great, *
that we should never have enough to pay it,
  In order to live for ever and ever, *
and never see the grave.
  For we see that the wise die also; like the dull and stupid they perish *
and leave their wealth to those who come after them.
10   Their graves shall be their homes for ever, their dwelling places from generation to generation, *
though they call the lands after their own names.
11   Even though honored, they cannot live for ever; *
they are like the beasts that perish.
12   Such is the way of those who foolishly trust in themselves, *
and the end of those who delight in their own words.
13   Like a flock of sheep they are destined to die; Death is their shepherd; *
they go down straightway to the grave.
14   Their form shall waste away, *
and the land of the dead shall be their home.
15   But God will ransom my life; *
he will snatch me from the grasp of death.
16   Do not be envious when some become rich, *
or when the grandeur of their house increases;
17   For they will carry nothing away at their death, *
nor will their grandeur follow them.
18   Though they thought highly of themselves while they lived, *
and were praised for their success,
19   They shall join the company of their forebears, *
who will never see the light again.
20   Those who are honored, but have no understanding, *
are like the beasts that perish.

Psalm 53 Dixit insipiens

  The fool has said in his heart, "There is no God." *
All are corrupt and commit abominable acts; there is none who does any good.
  God looks down from heaven upon us all, *
to see if there is any who is wise, if there is one who seeks after God.
  Every one has proved faithless; all alike have turned bad; *
there is none who does good; no, not one.
  Have they no knowledge, those evildoers *
who eat up my people like bread and do not call upon God?
  See how greatly they tremble, such trembling as never was; *
for God has scattered the bones of the enemy; they are put to shame, because God has rejected them.
  Oh, that Israel's deliverance would come out of Zion! *
when God restores the fortunes of his people Jacob will rejoice and Israel be glad.

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. The New Revised Standard Version Bible may be quoted and/or reprinted up to and inclusive of five hundred (500) verses without express written permission of the publisher, provided the verses quoted do not amount to a complete book of the Bible or account for fifty percent (50%) of the total work in which they are quoted.

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