Today's readings come from the Revised Common Lectionary. The readings for Morning or Evening Prayer are available in their respective offices at The Daily Prayer Anytime. Today, the Lectionary provides two tracks for the First Reading and Psalm. The complementary reading which has theological connections to the Gospel is provided first; the continuous reading track appears after the Gospel.
After these things the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision, "Do not be afraid, Abram, I am your shield; your reward shall be very great." But Abram said, "O Lord GOD, what will you give me, for I continue childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?" And Abram said, "You have given me no offspring, and so a slave born in my house is to be my heir." But the word of the LORD came to him, "This man shall not be your heir; no one but your very own issue shall be your heir." He brought him outside and said, "Look toward heaven and count the stars, if you are able to count them." Then he said to him, "So shall your descendants be." And he believed the LORD; and the LORD reckoned it to him as righteousness.
12 Happy is the nation whose God is the LORD! * happy the people he has chosen to be his own! 13 The LORD looks down from heaven, * and beholds all the people in the world. 14 From where he sits enthroned he turns his gaze * on all who dwell on the earth. 15 He fashions all the hearts of them * and understands all their works. 16 There is no king that can be saved by a mighty army; * a strong man is not delivered by his great strength. 17 The horse is a vain hope for deliverance; * for all its strength it cannot save. 18 Behold, the eye of the LORD is upon those who fear him, * on those who wait upon his love, 19 To pluck their lives from death, * and to feed them in time of famine. 20 Our soul waits for the LORD; * he is our help and our shield. 21 Indeed, our heart rejoices in him, * for in his holy Name we put our trust. 22 Let your loving-kindness, O LORD, be upon us, * as we have put our trust in you.
Hebrews 11:1-3, 11:8-16
Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. Indeed, by faith our ancestors received approval. By faith we understand that the worlds were prepared by the word of God, so that what is seen was made from things that are not visible. By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to set out for a place that he was to receive as an inheritance; and he set out, not knowing where he was going. By faith he stayed for a time in the land he had been promised, as in a foreign land, living in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. For he looked forward to the city that has foundations, whose architect and builder is God. By faith he received power of procreation, even though he was too old-- and Sarah herself was barren-- because he considered him faithful who had promised. Therefore from one person, and this one as good as dead, descendants were born, "as many as the stars of heaven and as the innumerable grains of sand by the seashore." All of these died in faith without having received the promises, but from a distance they saw and greeted them. They confessed that they were strangers and foreigners on the earth, for people who speak in this way make it clear that they are seeking a homeland. If they had been thinking of the land that they had left behind, they would have had opportunity to return. But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God; indeed, he has prepared a city for them.
"Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom. Sell your possessions, and give alms. Make purses for yourselves that do not wear out, an unfailing treasure in heaven, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. "Be dressed for action and have your lamps lit; be like those who are waiting for their master to return from the wedding banquet, so that they may open the door for him as soon as he comes and knocks. Blessed are those slaves whom the master finds alert when he comes; truly I tell you, he will fasten his belt and have them sit down to eat, and he will come and serve them. If he comes during the middle of the night, or near dawn, and finds them so, blessed are those slaves. "But know this: if the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an unexpected hour."
Continuous Reading Track
Isaiah 1:1, 10-20
Psalm 50:1-8, 23-24
1 The LORD, the God of gods, has spoken; * he has called the earth from the rising of the sun to its setting. 2 Out of Zion, perfect in its beauty, * God reveals himself in glory. 3 Our God will come and will not keep silence; * before him there is a consuming flame, and round about him a raging storm. 4 He calls the heavens and the earth from above * to witness the judgment of his people. 5 Gather before me my loyal followers, * those who have made a covenant with me and sealed it with sacrifice. 6 Let the heavens declare the rightness of his cause; * for God himself is judge. 7 Hear, O my people, and I will speak: "O Israel, I will bear witness against you; * for I am God, your God. 8 I do not accuse you because of your sacrifices; * your offerings are always before me. 23 Consider this well, you who forget God, * lest I rend you and there be none to deliver you. 24 Whoever offers me the sacrifice of thanksgiving honors me; * but to those who keep in my way will I show the salvation of God."
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.