September 2, 2014 ~ The Cure Of A Demoniac

Luke 4:31-37

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31 He came down to Capernaum, a city of Galilee. He was teaching them on the Sabbath day, 32 and they were astonished at his teaching, for his word was with authority. 33 In the synagogue there was a man who had a spirit of an unclean demon, and he cried out with a loud voice, 34 saying, “Ah! what have we to do with you, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know you who you are: the Holy One of God!”

35 Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Be silent, and come out of him!” When the demon had thrown him down in the middle of them, he came out of him, having done him no harm.

36 Amazement came on all, and they spoke together, one with another, saying, “What is this word? For with authority and power he commands the unclean spirits, and they come out!” 37 News about him went out into every place of the surrounding region.

September 1, 2014 ~ The Rejection At Nazareth

Luke 4:16-30

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16 He came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up. He entered, as was his custom, into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read. 17 The book of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. He opened the book, and found the place where it was written,

18 “The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
    because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor.
He has sent me to heal the broken hearted,[a]
    to proclaim release to the captives,
    recovering of sight to the blind,
    to deliver those who are crushed,
19     and to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.”[b]

20 He closed the book, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. The eyes of all in the synagogue were fastened on him. 21 He began to tell them, “Today, this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.”

22 All testified about him, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded out of his mouth, and they said, “Isn’t this Joseph’s son?”

23 He said to them, “Doubtless you will tell me this parable, ‘Physician, heal yourself! Whatever we have heard done at Capernaum, do also here in your hometown.’” 24 He said, “Most certainly I tell you, no prophet is acceptable in his hometown. 25 But truly I tell you, there were many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah, when the sky was shut up three years and six months, when a great famine came over all the land. 26 Elijah was sent to none of them, except to Zarephath, in the land of Sidon, to a woman who was a widow. 27 There were many lepers in Israel in the time of Elisha the prophet, yet not one of them was cleansed, except Naaman, the Syrian.”

28 They were all filled with wrath in the synagogue, as they heard these things. 29 They rose up, threw him out of the city, and led him to the brow of the hill that their city was built on, that they might throw him off the cliff. 30 But he, passing through the middle of them, went his way.

August 31, 2014 ~ On Jesus’ Passion And Discipleship

Matthew 16:21-27

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21 From that time, Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders, chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and the third day be raised up.

22 Peter took him aside, and began to rebuke him, saying, “Far be it from you, Lord! This will never be done to you.”

23 But he turned, and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me, for you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of men.” 24 Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If anyone desires to come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. 25 For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, and whoever will lose his life for my sake will find it. 26 For what will it profit a man, if he gains the whole world, and forfeits his life? Or what will a man give in exchange for his life? 27 For the Son of Man will come in the glory of his Father with his angels, and then he will render to everyone according to his deeds.

August 30, 2014 ~ The Parable Of The Talents

Matthew 25:14-30

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14 “For it is like a man, going into another country, who called his own servants, and entrusted his goods to them. 15 To one he gave five talents,[a] to another two, to another one; to each according to his own ability. Then he went on his journey. 16 Immediately he who received the five talents went and traded with them, and made another five talents. 17 In the same way, he also who got the two gained another two. 18 But he who received the one talent went away and dug in the earth, and hid his lord’s money.

19 “Now after a long time the lord of those servants came, and reconciled accounts with them. 20 He who received the five talents came and brought another five talents, saying, ‘Lord, you delivered to me five talents. Behold, I have gained another five talents besides them.’

21 “His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a few things, I will set you over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’

22 “He also who got the two talents came and said, ‘Lord, you delivered to me two talents. Behold, I have gained another two talents besides them.’

23 “His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a few things, I will set you over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’

24 “He also who had received the one talent came and said, ‘Lord, I knew you that you are a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you did not scatter. 25 I was afraid, and went away and hid your talent in the earth. Behold, you have what is yours.’

26 “But his lord answered him, ‘You wicked and slothful servant. You knew that I reap where I didn’t sow, and gather where I didn’t scatter. 27 You ought therefore to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I should have received back my own with interest. 28 Take away therefore the talent from him, and give it to him who has the ten talents. 29 For to everyone who has will be given, and he will have abundance, but from him who doesn’t have, even that which he has will be taken away. 30 Throw out the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

August 29, 2014 ~ The Death Of John The Baptist

Mark 6:17-29

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17 For Herod himself had sent out and arrested John, and bound him in prison for the sake of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife, for he had married her. 18 For John said to Herod, “It is not lawful for you to have your brother’s wife.” 19 Herodias set herself against him, and desired to kill him, but she couldn’t, 20 for Herod feared John, knowing that he was a righteous and holy man, and kept him safe. When he heard him, he did many things, and he heard him gladly.

21 Then a convenient day came, that Herod on his birthday made a supper for his nobles, the high officers, and the chief men of Galilee. 22 When the daughter of Herodias herself came in and danced, she pleased Herod and those sitting with him. The king said to the young lady, “Ask me whatever you want, and I will give it to you.” 23 He swore to her, “Whatever you shall ask of me, I will give you, up to half of my kingdom.”

24 She went out, and said to her mother, “What shall I ask?”

She said, “The head of John the Baptizer.”

25 She came in immediately with haste to the king, and asked, “I want you to give me right now the head of John the Baptizer on a platter.”

26 The king was exceedingly sorry, but for the sake of his oaths, and of his dinner guests, he didn’t wish to refuse her. 27 Immediately the king sent out a soldier of his guard, and commanded to bring John’s head, and he went and beheaded him in the prison, 28 and brought his head on a platter, and gave it to the young lady; and the young lady gave it to her mother.

29 When his disciples heard this, they came and took up his corpse, and laid it in a tomb.

August 28, 2014 ~ The Unknown Day And Hour

Matthew 24:42-51

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42 Watch therefore, for you don’t know in what hour your Lord comes. 43 But know this, that if the master of the house had known in what watch of the night the thief was coming, he would have watched, and would not have allowed his house to be broken into. 44 Therefore also be ready, for in an hour that you don’t expect, the Son of Man will come.

45 “Who then is the faithful and wise servant, whom his lord has set over his household, to give them their food in due season? 46 Blessed is that servant whom his lord finds doing so when he comes. 47 Most certainly I tell you that he will set him over all that he has. 48 But if that evil servant should say in his heart, ‘My lord is delaying his coming,’ 49 and begins to beat his fellow servants, and eat and drink with the drunkards, 50 the lord of that servant will come in a day when he doesn’t expect it, and in an hour when he doesn’t know it, 51 and will cut him in pieces, and appoint his portion with the hypocrites. There is where the weeping and grinding of teeth will be.

August 27, 2014 ~ Denunciation Of The Scribes And Pharisees

Matthew 23:27-32

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27 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitened tombs, which outwardly appear beautiful, but inwardly are full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness. 28 Even so you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but inwardly you are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.

29 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you build the tombs of the prophets, and decorate the tombs of the righteous, 30 and say, ‘If we had lived in the days of our fathers, we wouldn’t have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets.’ 31 Therefore you testify to yourselves that you are children of those who killed the prophets. 32 Fill up, then, the measure of your fathers.

August 26, 2014 ~ Neglect For Weightier Things

Matthew 23:23-26

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23 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint, dill, and cumin,[a] and have left undone the weightier matters of the law: justice, mercy, and faith. But you ought to have done these, and not to have left the other undone. 24 You blind guides, who strain out a gnat, and swallow a camel!

25 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and unrighteousness.[b] 26 You blind Pharisee, first clean the inside of the cup and of the platter, that its outside may become clean also.

August 25, 2014 ~ Denunciation Of The Scribes And Pharisees

Matthew 23:13-22

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13 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you devour widows’ houses, and as a pretense you make long prayers. Therefore you will receive greater condemnation.

14 “But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! Because you shut up the Kingdom of Heaven against men; for you don’t enter in yourselves, neither do you allow those who are entering in to enter.[a] 15 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you travel around by sea and land to make one proselyte; and when he becomes one, you make him twice as much of a son of Gehenna[b] as yourselves.

16 “Woe to you, you blind guides, who say, ‘Whoever swears by the temple, it is nothing; but whoever swears by the gold of the temple, he is obligated.’ 17 You blind fools! For which is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifies the gold? 18 ‘Whoever swears by the altar, it is nothing; but whoever swears by the gift that is on it, he is obligated?’ 19 You blind fools! For which is greater, the gift, or the altar that sanctifies the gift? 20 He therefore who swears by the altar, swears by it, and by everything on it. 21 He who swears by the temple, swears by it, and by him who was living[c] in it. 22 He who swears by heaven, swears by the throne of God, and by him who sits on it.

August 24, 2014 ~ Peter’s Confession About Jesus

Matthew 16:13-20

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13 Now when Jesus came into the parts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, “Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?”

14 They said, “Some say John the Baptizer, some, Elijah, and others, Jeremiah, or one of the prophets.”

15 He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?”

16 Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

17 Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. 18 I also tell you that you are Peter,[a] and on this rock[b] I will build my assembly, and the gates of Hades[c] will not prevail against it. 19 I will give to you the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will have been bound in heaven; and whatever you release on earth will have been released in heaven.” 20 Then he commanded the disciples that they should tell no one that he was Jesus the Christ.

Readings

First Reading: Isaiah 22:19-23

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19 I will thrust you from your office. You will be pulled down from your station.

20 It will happen in that day that I will call my servant Eliakim the son of Hilkiah, 21 and I will clothe him with your robe, and strengthen him with your belt. I will commit your government into his hand; and he will be a father to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and to the house of Judah. 22 I will lay the key of David’s house on his shoulder. He will open, and no one will shut. He will shut, and no one will open. 23 I will fasten him like a nail in a sure place. He will be for a throne of glory to his father’s house.

Second Reading: Romans 11:33-36

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33 Oh the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and the knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past tracing out!

34 “For who has known the mind of the Lord?
    Or who has been his counselor?”[a]
35 “Or who has first given to him,
    and it will be repaid to him again?”[b]

36 For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things. To him be the glory for ever! Amen.