Readings

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

7th August – Trinity 8
Hebrews 11: 1 – 3, 8 – 16

1 To have faith is to be sure of the things we hope for, to be certain of the things we cannot see. 2 It was by their faith that people of ancient times won God’s approval. 3 It is by faith that we understand that the universe was created by God’s word, so that what can be seen was made out of what cannot be seen. 8 It was faith that made Abraham obey when God called him to go out to a country which God had promised to give him. He left his own country without knowing where he was going. 9 By faith he lived as a foreigner in the country that God had promised him. He lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who received the same promise from God. 10 For Abraham was waiting for the city which God has designed and built, the city with permanent foundations. 11 It was faith that made Abraham able to become a father, even though he was too old and Sarah herself could not have children. He trusted God to keep his promise. 12 Though Abraham was practically dead, from this one man came as many descendants as there are stars in the sky, as many as the numberless grains of sand on the seashore. 13 It was in faith that all these persons died. They did not receive the things God had promised, but from a long way off they saw them and welcomed them, and admitted openly that they were foreigners and refugees on earth. 14 Those who say such things make it clear that they are looking for a country of their own. 15 They did not keep thinking about the country they had left; if they had, they would have had the chance to return. 16 Instead, it was a better country they longed for, the heavenly country. And so God is not ashamed for them to call him their God, because he has prepared a city for them.

Luke 12: 32 – 40

32 “Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father is pleased to give you the Kingdom. 33 Sell all your belongings and give the money to the poor. Provide for yourselves purses that don’t wear out, and save your riches in heaven, where they will never decrease, because no thief can get to them, and no moth can destroy them. 34 For your heart will always be where your riches are. 35 “Be ready for whatever comes, dressed for action and with your lamps lit, 36 like servants who are waiting for their master to come back from a wedding feast. When he comes and knocks, they will open the door for him at once. 37 How happy are those servants whose master finds them awake and ready when he returns! I tell you, he will take off his coat, ask them to sit down, and will wait on them. 38 How happy they are if he finds them ready, even if he should come at midnight or even later! 39 And you can be sure that if the owner of a house knew the time when the thief would come, he would not let the thief break into his house. 4 And you, too, must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you are not expecting him.”

14th August – Trinity 9
Hebrews 11: 29 – 12.2

29 It was faith that made the Israelites able to cross the Red Sea as if on dry land; when the Egyptians tried to do it, the water swallowed them up. 30 It was faith that made the walls of Jericho fall down after the Israelites had marched round them for seven days. 31 It was faith that kept the prostitute Rahab from being killed with those who disobeyed God, for she gave the Israelite spies a friendly welcome. 32 Should I go on? There isn’t enough time for me to speak of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, and the prophets. 33 Through faith they fought whole countries and won. They did what was right and received what God had promised. They shut the mouths of lions, 34 put out fierce fires, escaped being killed by the sword. They were weak, but became strong; they were mighty in battle and defeated the armies of foreigners. 35 Through faith women received their dead relatives raised back to life. Others, refusing to accept freedom, died under torture in order to be raised to a better life. 36 Some were mocked and whipped, and others were put in chains and taken off to prison. 37 They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were killed by the sword. They went round clothed in skins of sheep or goats — poor, persecuted, and ill-treated. 38The world was not good enough for them! They wandered like refugees in the deserts and hills, living in caves and holes in the ground. 39 What a record all of these have won by their faith! Yet they did not receive what God had promised, 40 because God had decided on an even better plan for us. His purpose was that only in company with us would they be made perfect. 1 As for us, we have this large crowd of witnesses round us. So then, let us rid ourselves of everything that gets in the way, and of the sin which holds on to us so tightly, and let us run with determination the race that lies before us. 2 Let us keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, on whom our faith depends from beginning to end. He did not give up because of the cross! On the contrary, because of the joy that was waiting for him, he thought nothing of the disgrace of dying on the cross, and he is now seated at the right-hand side of God’s throne.

Luke 22: 49 – 56

49 “I came to set the earth on fire, and how I wish it were already kindled! 50 I have a baptism to receive, and how distressed I am until it is over! 51 Do you suppose that I came to bring peace to the world? No, not peace, but division. 52From now on a family of five will be divided, three against two and two against three. 53 Fathers will be against their sons, and sons against their fathers; mothers will be against their daughters, and daughters against their mothers; mothers-in-law will be against their daughters-in-law, and daughters-in-law against their mothers-in-law.” 54 Jesus said also to the people, “When you see a cloud coming up in the west, at once you say that it is going to rain — and it does. 55 And when you feel the south wind blowing, you say that it is going to get hot — and it does. 56Hypocrites! You can look at the earth and the sky and predict the weather; why, then, don’t you know the meaning of this present time?

21st August – Trinity 10 – Family Service – Sunday School Pupils

10 One Sabbath Jesus was teaching in a synagogue. 11 A woman there had an evil spirit that had made her ill for eighteen years; she was bent over and could not straighten up at all. 12When Jesus saw her, he called out to her, “Woman, you are free from your illness!” 13He placed his hands on her, and at once she straightened herself up and praised God. 14 The official of the synagogue was angry that Jesus had healed on the Sabbath, so he spoke up and said to the people, “There are six days in which we should work; so come during those days and be healed, but not on the Sabbath!” 15 The Lord answered him, “You hypocrites! Any one of you would untie your ox or your donkey from the stall and take it out to give it water on the Sabbath. 16 Now here is this descendant of Abraham whom Satan has kept bound up for eighteen years; should she not be released on the Sabbath?” 17 His answer made his enemies ashamed of themselves, while the people rejoiced over all the wonderful things that he did.

28th August – Trinity 11
Hebrews 13: 1 – 8, 15,16

1 Keep on loving one another as Christian brothers and sisters. 2 Remember to welcome strangers in your homes. There were some who did that and welcomed angels without knowing it. 3 Remember those who are in prison, as though you were in prison with them. Remember those who are suffering, as though you were suffering as they are. 4 Marriage is to be honoured by all, and husbands and wives must be faithful to each other. God will judge those who are immoral and those who commit adultery. 5 Keep your lives free from the love of money, and be satisfied with what you have. For God has said, “I will never leave you; I will never abandon you.” 6 Let us be bold, then, and say: “The Lord is my helper, I will not be afraid. What can anyone do to me?” 7 Remember your former leaders, who spoke God’s message to you. Think back on how they lived and died, and imitate their faith. 8 Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and for ever. amp and share his shame. 14 For there is no permanent city for us here on earth; we are looking for the city which is to come. 15 Let us, then, always offer praise to God as our sacrifice through Jesus, which is the offering presented by lips that confess him as Lord. 16 Do not forget to do good and to help one another, because these are the sacrifices that please God.

Luke 14: 7 – 14

7Jesus noticed how some of the guests were choosing the best places, so he told this parable to all of them: 8 “When someone invites you to a wedding feast, do not sit down in the best place. It could happen that someone more important than you has been invited, 9and your host, who invited both of you, would have to come and say to you, ‘Let him have this place.’ Then you would be embarrassed and have to sit in the lowest place. 10 Instead, when you are invited, go and sit in the lowest place, so that your host will come to you and say, ‘Come on up, my friend, to a better place.’ This will bring you honour in the presence of all the other guests. 11 For all those who make themselves great will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be made great.” 12 Then Jesus said to his host, “When you give a lunch or a dinner, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or your rich neighbours — for they will invite you back, and in this way you will be paid for what you did. 13 When you give a feast, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind; 14 and you will be blessed, because they are not able to pay you back. God will repay you on the day the good people rise from death.”

4th September – Trinity 12
Philemon: 1 – 21

1 From Paul, a prisoner for the sake of Christ Jesus, and from our brother Timothy — To our friend and fellow-worker Philemon, 2and the church that meets in your house, and our sister Apphia, and our fellow-soldier Archippus: 3 May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give you grace and peace. 4 Brother Philemon, every time I pray, I mention you and give thanks to my God. 5 For I hear of your love for all God’s people and the faith you have in the Lord Jesus. 6 My prayer is that our fellowship with you as believers will bring about a deeper understanding of every blessing which we have in our life in union with Christ. 7 Your love, dear brother, has brought me great joy and much encouragement! You have cheered the hearts of all God’s people. 8 For this reason I could be bold enough, as your brother in Christ, to order you to do what should be done. 9 But because I love you, I make a request instead. I do this even though I am Paul, the ambassador of Christ Jesus, and at present also a prisoner for his sake. 10 So I make a request to you on behalf of Onesimus, who is my own son in Christ; for while in prison I have become his spiritual father. 11 At one time he was of no use to you, but now he is useful both to you and to me. 12 I am sending him back to you now, and with him goes my heart. 13 I would like to keep him here with me, while I am in prison for the gospel’s sake, so that he could help me in your place. 14 However, I do not want to force you to help me; rather, I would like you to do it of your own free will. So I will not do anything unless you agree. 15 It may be that Onesimus was away from you for a short time so that you might have him back for all time. 16 And now he is not just a slave, but much more than a slave: he is a dear brother in Christ. How much he means to me! And how much more he will mean to you, both as a slave and as a brother in the Lord! 17 So, if you think of me as your partner, welcome him back just as you would welcome me. 18 If he has done you any wrong or owes you anything, charge it to my account. 19 Here, I will write this with my own hand: I, Paul, will pay you back. (I should not have to remind you, of course, that you owe your very self to me.) 20 So, my brother, please do me this favour for the Lord’s sake; as a brother in Christ, cheer me up! 21 I am sure, as I write this, that you will do what I ask — in fact I know that you will do even more.

Luke 14: 25 – 33

25 Once when large crowds of people were going along with Jesus, he turned and said to them, 26 “Those who come to me cannot be my disciples unless they love me more than they love father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, and themselves as well. 27 Those who do not carry their own cross and come after me cannot be my disciples. 28 “If one of you is planning to build a tower, you sit down first and work out what it will cost, to see if you have enough money to finish the job. 29 If you don’t, you will not be able to finish the tower after laying the foundation; and all who see what happened will laugh at you. 30 ‘This man began to build but can’t finish the job!’ they will say. 31 “If a king goes out with 10,000 men to fight another king who comes against him with 20,000 men, he will sit down first and decide if he is strong enough to face that other king. 32If he isn’t, he will send messengers to meet the other king, to ask for terms of peace while he is still a long way off. 33 In the same way,” concluded Jesus, “none of you can be my disciple unless you give up everything you have.