FIRST READING: Exodus 32:1-14
After the people saw that Moses had been on the mountain for a long time, they went to Aaron and said, “Make us an image of a god who will lead and protect us. Moses brought us out ofEgypt, but nobody knows what has happened to him.”
2Aaron told them, “Bring me the gold earrings that your wives and sons and daughters are wearing.” 3Everybody took off their earrings and brought them to Aaron, 4then he melted them and made an idol in the shape of a young bull.
All the people said to one another, “This is the god who brought us out of Egypt!”
5When Aaron saw what was happening, he built an altar in front of the idol and said, “Tomorrow we will celebrate in honor of the LORD.” 6The people got up early the next morning and killed some animals to be used for sacrifices and others to be eaten. Then everyone ate and drank so much that they began to carry on like wild people.
7The LORD said to Moses:
Hurry back down! Those people you led out of Egyptare acting like fools. 8They have already stopped obeying me and have made themselves an idol in the shape of a young bull. They have bowed down to it, offered sacrifices, and said that it is the god who brought them out of Egypt. 9Moses, I have seen how stubborn these people are, 10and I’m angry enough to destroy them, so don’t try to stop me. But I will make your descendants into a great nation.
11Moses tried to get the LORD God to change his mind:
Our LORD, you used your mighty power to bring these people out of Egypt. Now don’t become angry and destroy them. 12If you do, the Egyptians will say that you brought your people out here into the mountains just to get rid of them. Please don’t be angry with your people. Don’t destroy them!
13Remember the solemn promise you made to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. You promised that someday they would have as many descendants as there are stars in the sky and that you would give them land.
14So even though the LORD had threatened to destroy the people, he changed his mind and let them live.
PSALM: 106:1-6, 19-23
1We will celebrate and praise you, LORD!
You are good to us, and your love never fails.
2No one can praise you enough
for all of the mighty things you have done.
3You bless those people who are honest and fair
in everything they do.
4Remember me, LORD, when you show kindness
by saving your people.
5Let me prosper with the rest of your chosen ones,
as they celebrate with pride because they belong to you.
6We and our ancestors have sinned terribly.
19At Horeb your people made and worshiped
20 the statue of a bull, instead of you, their glorious God.
21You worked powerful miracles to save them from Egypt,
but they forgot about you
22 and the fearsome things you did at the Red Sea.
23You were angry and started to destroy them,
but Moses, your chosen leader, begged you not to do it.
SECOND READING: Philippians 4:1-9
Dear friends, I love you and long to see you. Please keep on being faithful to the Lord. You are my pride and joy.
2Euodia and Syntyche, you belong to the Lord, so I beg you to stop arguing with each other. 3And, my true partner, I ask you to help them. These women have worked together with me and with Clement and with the others in spreading the good news. Their names are now written in the book of life.
4Always be glad because of the Lord! I will say it again: Be glad. 5Always be gentle with others. The Lord will soon be here. 6Don’t worry about anything, but pray about everything. With thankful hearts offer up your prayers and requests to God. 7Then, because you belong to Christ Jesus, God will bless you with peace that no one can completely understand. And this peace will control the way you think and feel.
8Finally, my friends, keep your minds on whatever is true, pure, right, holy, friendly, and proper. Don’t ever stop thinking about what is truly worthwhile and worthy of praise. 9You know the teachings I gave you, and you know what you heard me say and saw me do. So follow my example. And God, who gives peace, will be with you.
GOSPEL: Matthew 22:1-14
Once again Jesus used stories to teach the people:
2The kingdom of heaven is like what happened when a king gave a wedding banquet for his son. 3The king sent some servants to tell the invited guests to come to the banquet, but the guests refused. 4He sent other servants to say to the guests, “The banquet is ready! My cattle and prize calves have all been prepared. Everything is ready. Come to the banquet!”
5But the guests did not pay any attention. Some of them left for their farms, and some went to their places of business. 6Others grabbed the servants, then beat them up and killed them.
7This made the king so furious that he sent an army to kill those murderers and burn down their city. 8Then he said to the servants, “It is time for the wedding banquet, and the invited guests don’t deserve to come. 9Go out to the street corners and tell everyone you meet to come to the banquet.” 10They went out on the streets and brought in everyone they could find, good and bad alike. And the banquet room was filled with guests.
11When the king went in to meet the guests, he found that one of them wasn’t wearing the right kind of clothes for the wedding. 12The king asked, “Friend, why didn’t you wear proper clothes for the wedding?” But the guest had no excuse. 13So the king gave orders for that person to be tied hand and foot and to be thrown outside into the dark. That’s where people will cry and grit their teeth in pain. 14Many are invited, but only a few are chosen.