Second Sunday after EPIPHANY 2023

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Today’s Scripture
For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is also dead.

James 2:26

Life-giving Creator of both great and small of all life the maker, the true life of all we blossom, then wither like leaves on the tree, but you live forever who was and will be.

How should we come before the Holy One and bow before God on high. God has shown what is good and what is required to do justice, to show constant love and to walk humbly with our God.

We give thanks to you, O God, for you are good. For your steadfast love endures forever! Who can utter your mighty works, or show forth all your praises? Blessed are they who observe justice, who do righteousness at all times.

IS not this the kind of worship that please me, says our God to undo the bonds of injustice, to let the oppressed go free and break every yoke, to share bread with the hungry and shelter the homeless poor, to clothe the need and not turn from your own people? I was hungry and you fed me, thirsty and you have me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, sick or in prison and you visited me.

When did we see you hungry and feed you, thirsty and give you drink? When did we see you a stranger and welcome you, naked and clothe you, sick or in prison and visit you? Truly, I say to you, when you did it to one of the least of these, you did it to me.

If you do away with the yoke, the clenched fist, the wicked word, if you give your bread to the hungry and relief to the oppressed, then your light will rise like the dawn, your goodness will go before you and the glory of God behind you.

God has shown us what is good and what is required to do justice, to show constant love and to walk humbly with our God.

Blessed are the poor in spirit, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, For they will be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, For they will inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, For they will be filled.
Blessed are the merciful, For they shall receive mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart, For they will be called children of God.

Jesus said, You have heard it said, “You shall not murder”, and “whoever murders shall be liable to judgement.” But I say to you that if you are angry with your neighbor, you will be liable to judgement.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.

You have heard it said, “An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.” But I say to you Do not resist an evildoer. But if anyone strikes you on the right cheek, turn the other also.
Blessed are the peacemakers,for they will be called children of God.

You have heard it said, “You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.” But I say to you Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.

Put not your trust in rulers, in mortals in whom there is no help. There will be One who will rule with integrity and govern with justice. One who will be like a shelter from the wind and a place to hide from the storm. One who will be like streams flowing in a desert, like a shadow of a giant rock in a barren land. One whose eyes and ears will be open to the needs of the people.

Our God says:
Here is my servant, whom I strengthened, the one I have chosen, with whom I am pleased.I have filled him with my Spirit, and he will bring justice to every nation.
He will not lose hope or courage, he will establish justice on the earth.
He will teach us what he wants us to do, we will walk in the paths he has chosen.
He will settle disputes among the nation, he will arbitrate for many peoples.
We will beat our swords into plowshares and our spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not lift up sword against nation, neither will they learn war anymore.
We will live in peace, and no one will make us afraid. Justice will roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever flowing stream.

And the effect of righteousness will be peace, and the result of righteousness will be quietness and trust forever. And we will abide in a peaceful habitation, in secure dwellings, and in quiet resting places.We will live in peace, and no one will make us afraid.


WATCHWORD FOR THE WEEK


God is faithful; by him you were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
1 Corinthians 1:9



DAILY WATCHWORD


To do righteousness and justice is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice.
Proverbs 21:3



DOCTRINAL TEXT


For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is also dead.
James 2:26



PRAYER FOR TODAY


Loving God, raise us up to the do the good you would have us do. Open our eyes, ears, and
hearts to those who are oppressed and marginalized. May our efforts on their behalf glorify
you. We pray this, in the name of Jesus. Amen

June 2024
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