Readings

BELOW ARE THE READINGS FOR THE LAST SUNDAY SERVICE PLUS READINGS FOR FORTHCOMING SUNDAYS

17 February – 3rd Sunday before Lent
1 Corinthians 15: 12 – 12 – 20

12 Now, since our message is that Christ has been raised from death, how can some of you say that the dead will not be raised to life? 13If that is true, it means that Christ was not raised; 14 and if Christ has not been raised from death, then we have nothing to preach and you have nothing to believe. 15 More than that, we are shown to be lying about God, because we said that he raised Christ from death — but if it is true that the dead are not raised to life, then he did not raise Christ. 16 For if the dead are not raised, neither has Christ been raised. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, then your faith is a delusion and you are still lost in your sins. 18 It would also mean that the believers in Christ who have died are lost. 19 If our hope in Christ is good for this life only and no more, then we deserve more pity than anyone else in all the world. 20 But the truth is that Christ has been raised from death, as the guarantee that those who sleep in death will also be raised.

Luke 6: 17 – 26

17 When Jesus had come down from the hill with the apostles, he stood on a level place with a large number of his disciples. A large crowd of people was there from all over Judea and from Jerusalem and from the coastal cities of Tyre and Sidon; 18 they had come to hear him and to be healed of their diseases. Those who were troubled by evil spirits also came and were healed. 19 All the people tried to touch him, for power was going out from him and healing them all. 20 Jesus looked at his disciples and said, “Happy are you poor; the Kingdom of God is yours! 21 Happy are you who are hungry now; you will be filled! Happy are you who weep now; you will laugh! 22 “Happy are you when people hate you, reject you, insult you, and say that you are evil, all because of the Son of Man! 23 Be glad when that happens, and dance for joy, because a great reward is kept for you in heaven. For their ancestors did the very same things to the prophets. 24 “But how terrible for you who are rich now; you have had your easy life! 25 How terrible for you who are full now; you will go hungry! How terrible for you who laugh now; you will mourn and weep! 26 “How terrible when all people speak well of you; their ancestors said the very same things about the false prophets.

24 February – 2nd Sunday before Lent
Revelations 4

1 At this point I had another vision and saw an open door in heaven. And the voice that sounded like a trumpet, which I had heard speaking to me before, said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must happen after this.” 2 At once the Spirit took control of me. There in heaven was a throne with someone sitting on it. 3 His face gleamed like such precious stones as jasper and carnelian, and all round the throne there was a rainbow the colour of an emerald. 4 In a circle round the throne were 24 other thrones, on which were seated 24 elders dressed in white and wearing crowns of gold. 5 From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings, and peals of thunder. In front of the throne seven lighted torches were burning, which are the seven spirits of God. 6 Also in front of the throne there was what looked like a sea of glass, clear as crystal. Surrounding the throne on each of its sides, were four living creatures covered with eyes in front and behind. 7 The first one looked like a lion; the second looked like a bull; the third had a face like a human face; and the fourth looked like an eagle in flight. 8 Each one of the four living creatures had six wings, and they were covered with eyes, inside and out. Day and night they never stop singing: “Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord God Almighty, who was, who is, and who is to come.” 9 The four living creatures sing songs of glory and honour and thanks to the one who sits on the throne, who lives for ever and ever. When they do so, 10 the 24 elders fall down before the one who sits on the throne, and worship him who lives for ever and ever. They throw their crowns down in front of the throne and say: 11 “Our Lord and God! You are worthy to receive glory, honour, and power. For you created all things, and by your will they were given existence and life.”

Luke 8: 22 – 25

22 One day Jesus got into a boat with his disciples and said to them, “Let us go across to the other side of the lake.” So they started out. 23 As they were sailing, Jesus fell asleep. Suddenly a strong wind blew down on the lake, and the boat began to fill with water, so that they were all in great danger. 24 The disciples went to Jesus and woke him up, saying, “Master, Master! We are about to die!” Jesus got up and gave an order to the wind and the stormy water; they died down, and there was a great calm. 25 Then he said to the disciples, “Where is your faith?” But they were amazed and afraid, and said to one another, “Who is this man? He gives orders to the winds and waves, and they obey him!”

3 March – Sunday before Lent – Transfiguation
2 Corinthians 3: 12 – 4:2

12 Because we have this hope, we are very bold. 13 We are not like Moses, who had to put a veil over his face so that the people of Israel would not see the brightness fade and disappear. 14 Their minds, indeed, were closed; and to this very day their minds are covered with the same veil as they read the books of the old covenant. The veil is removed only when a person is joined to Christ. 15 Even today, whenever they read the Law of Moses, the veil still covers their minds. 16 But it can be removed, as the scripture says about Moses: “His veil was removed when he turned to the Lord.” 17 Now, “the Lord” in this passage is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is present, there is freedom. 18 All of us, then, reflect the glory of the Lord with uncovered faces; and that same glory, coming from the Lord, who is the Spirit, transforms us into his likeness in an ever greater degree of glory. 1 God in his mercy has given us this work to do, and so we are not discouraged. 2We put aside all secret and shameful deeds; we do not act with deceit, nor do we falsify the word of God. In the full light of truth we live in God’s sight and try to commend ourselves to everyone’s good conscience.

Luke 9: 28 – 36

28 About a week after he had said these things, Jesus took Peter, John, and James with him and went up a hill to pray. 29 While he was praying, his face changed its appearance, and his clothes became dazzling white. 30 Suddenly two men were there talking with him. They were Moses and Elijah, 31who appeared in heavenly glory and talked with Jesus about the way in which he would soon fulfil God’s purpose by dying in Jerusalem. 32Peter and his companions were sound asleep, but they woke up and saw Jesus’ glory and the two men who were standing with him. 33 As the men were leaving Jesus, Peter said to him, “Master, how good it is that we are here! We will make three tents, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” (He did not really know what he was saying.)
34 While he was still speaking, a cloud appeared and covered them with its shadow; and the disciples were afraid as the cloud came over them. 35 A voice said from the cloud, “This is my Son, whom I have chosen — listen to him!” 36 When the voice stopped, there was Jesus all alone. The disciples kept quiet about all this, and told no one at that time anything they had seen.

10 March – Lent 1
Romans 10: 8b – 13

8 What it says is this: “God’s message is near you, on your lips and in your heart” — that is, the message of faith that we preach. 9 If you confess that Jesus is Lord and believe that God raised him from death, you will be saved. 10 For it is by our faith that we are put right with God; it is by our confession that we are saved. 11 The scripture says, “Whoever believes in him will not be disappointed.” 12 This includes everyone, because there is no difference between Jews and Gentiles; God is the same Lord of all and richly blesses all who call to him. 13 As the scripture says, “Everyone who calls out to the Lord for help will be saved.”

Luke 4: 1 – 13

1 Jesus returned from the Jordan full of the Holy Spirit and was led by the Spirit into the desert, 2 where he was tempted by the Devil for forty days. In all that time he ate nothing, so that he was hungry when it was over. 3 The Devil said to him, “If you are God’s Son, order this stone to turn into bread.” 4 But Jesus answered, “The scripture says, ‘Human beings cannot live on bread alone.’ ” 5 Then the Devil took him up and showed him in a second all the kingdoms of the world. 6“I will give you all this power and all this wealth,” the Devil told him. “It has all been handed over to me, and I can give it to anyone I choose. 7 All this will be yours, then, if you worship me.” 8 Jesus answered, “The scripture says, ‘Worship the Lord your God and serve only him!’ ” 9 Then the Devil took him to Jerusalem and set him on the highest point of the Temple, and said to him, “If you are God’s Son, throw yourself down from here. 10 For the scripture says, ‘God will order his angels to take good care of you.’ 11 It also says, ‘They will hold you up with their hands so that not even your feet will be hurt on the stones.’ ” 12 But Jesus answered, “The scripture says, ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’ ” 13 When the Devil finished tempting Jesus in every way, he left him for a while.

17 March – Lent 2
Phillipians 3: 17 – 4.1

17 Keep on imitating me, my brothers and sisters. Pay attention to those who follow the right example that we have set for you. 18 I have told you this many times before, and now I repeat it with tears: there are many whose lives make them enemies of Christ’s death on the cross. 19 They are going to end up in hell, because their god is their bodily desires. They are proud of what they should be ashamed of, and they think only of things that belong to this world. 20 We, however, are citizens of heaven, and we eagerly wait for our Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ, to come from heaven. 21 He will change our weak mortal bodies and make them like his own glorious body, using that power by which he is able to bring all things under his rule.
1 So then, my brothers and sisters, how dear you are to me and how I miss you! How happy you make me, and how proud I am of you! This then, dear brothers and sisters, is how you should stand firm in your life in the Lord.

Luke 13: 31 – 35

31 At that same time some Pharisees came to Jesus and said to him, “You must get out of here and go somewhere else, because Herod wants to kill you.” 32 Jesus answered them, “Go and tell that fox: ‘I am driving out demons and performing cures today and tomorrow, and on the third day I shall finish my work.’33 Yet I must be on my way today, tomorrow, and the next day; it is not right for a prophet to be killed anywhere except in Jerusalem. 34 “Jerusalem, Jerusalem! You kill the prophets, you stone the messengers God has sent you! How many times have I wanted to put my arms round all your people, just as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you would not let me! 35  And so your Temple will be abandoned. I assure you that you will not see me until the time comes when you say, ‘God bless him who comes in the name of the Lord.’ ”