Reading The Scriptures for February 20, 2011

February 20, 2011

Seventh Sunday after the Epiphany

FIRST READING: Leviticus 19:1-2, 9-18

The LORD told Moses 2to say to the community of Israel:
I am the LORD your God. I am holy, and you must be holy too!
9When you harvest your grain, always leave some of it standing along the edges of your fields and don’t pick up what falls on the ground. 10Don’t strip your grapevines clean or gather the grapes that fall off the vines. Leave them for the poor and for those foreigners who live among you. I am the LORD your God.
11Do not steal or tell lies or cheat others.
12Do not misuse my name by making promises you don’t intend to keep. I am the LORD your God.
13Do not steal anything or cheat anyone, and don’t fail to pay your workers at the end of each day.
14I am the LORD your God, and I command you not to make fun of the deaf or to cause a blind person to stumble.
15Be fair, no matter who is on trialdon’t favor either the poor or the rich.
16Don’t be a gossip, but never hesitate to speak up in court, especially if your testimony can save someone’s life.
17Don’t hold grudges. On the other hand, it’s wrong not to correct someone who needs correcting. 18Stop being angry and don’t try to take revenge. I am the LORD, and I command you to love others as much as you love yourself.

PSALMODY: Psalm 119:33-40

33Point out your rules to me,
and I won’t disobey even one of them.
34Help me to understand your Law;
I promise to obey it with all my heart.
35Direct me by your commands!
I love to do what you say.
36Make me want to obey you, rather than to be rich.
37Take away my foolish desires,
and let me find life by walking with you.
38I am your servant!
Do for me what you promised to those who worship you.
39Your wonderful teachings protect me from the insults
that I hate so much.
40I long for your teachings.
Be true to yourself and let me live.

SECOND READING: 1 Corinthians 3:10-11, 16-23

10God was kind and let me become an expert builder. I laid a foundation on which others have built. But we must each be careful how we build, 11because Christ is the only foundation.
16All of you surely know that you are God’s temple and that his Spirit lives in you. 17Together you are God’s holy temple, and God will destroy anyone who destroys his temple.
18Don’t fool yourselves! If any of you think you are wise in the things of this world, you will have to become foolish before you can be truly wise. 19This is because God considers the wisdom of this world to be foolish. It is just as the Scriptures say, “God catches the wise when they try to outsmart him.” 20The Scriptures also say, “The Lord knows that the plans made by wise people are useless.” 21-22So stop bragging about what anyone has done. Paul and Apollos and Peter all belong to you. In fact, everything is yours, including the world, life, death, the present, and the future. Everything belongs to you, 23and you belong to Christ, and Christ belongs to God.

GOSPEL: Matthew 5:38-48

38You know that you have been taught, “An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.” 39But I tell you not to try to get even with a person who has done something to you. When someone slaps your right cheek, turn and let that person slap your other cheek. 40If someone sues you for your shirt, give up your coat as well. 41If a soldier forces you to carry his pack one mile, carry it two miles. 42When people ask you for something, give it to them. When they want to borrow money, lend it to them.

43You have heard people say, “Love your neighbors and hate your enemies.” 44But I tell you to love your enemies and pray for anyone who mistreats you. 45Then you will be acting like your Father in heaven. He makes the sun rise on both good and bad people. And he sends rain for the ones who do right and for the ones who do wrong. 46If you love only those people who love you, will God reward you for that? Even tax collectors love their friends. 47If you greet only your friends, what’s so great about that? Don’t even unbelievers do that? 48But you must always act like your Father in heaven.

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