December 25th, 2018

The Nativity of Our Lord (Christmas Dawn)

Collect (LSB)

Most merciful God, You gave Your eternal Word to become incarnate of the pure Virgin. Grant Your people grace to put away fleshly lusts, that they may be ready for Your visitation; through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

Old Testament (LSB): Exodus 40:17-21; Exodus 40:34-38

Old Testament: Micah 3:2-4

2 You who hate good and love evil;
      Who strip the skin from My people,[a]
      And the flesh from their bones;
       3 Who also eat the flesh of My people,
      Flay their skin from them,
      Break their bones,
      And chop them in pieces
      Like meat for the pot,
      Like flesh in the caldron.”
       4 Then they will cry to the LORD,
      But He will not hear them;
      He will even hide His face from them at that time,
      Because they have been evil in their deeds.

Footnotes:Micah 3:2 Literally them

Epistle: Titus 3:4-7

4 But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, 5 not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, 6 whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

Gospel: Luke 2:15-20

15 So it was, when the angels had gone away from them into heaven, that the shepherds said to one another, “Let us now go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has come to pass, which the Lord has made known to us.” 16 And they came with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the Babe lying in a manger. 17 Now when they had seen Him, they made widely[a] known the saying which was told them concerning this Child. 18 And all those who heard it marveled at those things which were told them by the shepherds. 19 But Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told them.

Footnotes:Luke 2:17 NU-Text omits widely.

First Reading: Is. 49:1-18

The Servant, the Light to the Gentiles

 1 “Listen, O coastlands, to Me,
      And take heed, you peoples from afar!
      The LORD has called Me from the womb;
      From the matrix of My mother He has made mention of My name.
       2 And He has made My mouth like a sharp sword;
      In the shadow of His hand He has hidden Me,
      And made Me a polished shaft;
      In His quiver He has hidden Me.”
       3 “ And He said to me,
      ‘ You are My servant, O Israel,
      In whom I will be glorified.’
       4 Then I said, ‘I have labored in vain,
      I have spent my strength for nothing and in vain;
      Yet surely my just reward is with the LORD,
      And my work with my God.’”
       5 “ And now the LORD says,
      Who formed Me from the womb to be His Servant,
      To bring Jacob back to Him,
      So that Israel is gathered to Him[a]
      (For I shall be glorious in the eyes of the LORD,
      And My God shall be My strength),
       6 Indeed He says,
      ‘ It is too small a thing that You should be My Servant
      To raise up the tribes of Jacob,
      And to restore the preserved ones of Israel;
      I will also give You as a light to the Gentiles,
      That You should be My salvation to the ends of the earth.’”
       7 Thus says the LORD,
      The Redeemer of Israel, their Holy One,
      To Him whom man despises,
      To Him whom the nation abhors,
      To the Servant of rulers:
      “ Kings shall see and arise,
      Princes also shall worship,
      Because of the LORD who is faithful,
      The Holy One of Israel;
      And He has chosen You.” 8 Thus says the LORD:
      “ In an acceptable time I have heard You,
      And in the day of salvation I have helped You;
      I will preserve You and give You
      As a covenant to the people,
      To restore the earth,
      To cause them to inherit the desolate heritages;
       9 That You may say to the prisoners, ‘Go forth,’
      To those who are in darkness, ‘Show yourselves.’
      “ They shall feed along the roads,
      And their pastures shall be on all desolate heights.
       10 They shall neither hunger nor thirst,
      Neither heat nor sun shall strike them;
      For He who has mercy on them will lead them,
      Even by the springs of water He will guide them.
       11 I will make each of My mountains a road,
      And My highways shall be elevated.
       12 Surely these shall come from afar;
      Look! Those from the north and the west,
      And these from the land of Sinim.”
       13 Sing, O heavens!
      Be joyful, O earth!
      And break out in singing, O mountains!
      For the LORD has comforted His people,
      And will have mercy on His afflicted.

God Will Remember Zion

    14 But Zion said, “The LORD has forsaken me,
      And my Lord has forgotten me.”
       15 “ Can a woman forget her nursing child,
      And not have compassion on the son of her womb?
      Surely they may forget,
      Yet I will not forget you.
       16 See, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands;
      Your walls are continually before Me.
       17 Your sons[b] shall make haste;
      Your destroyers and those who laid you waste
      Shall go away from you.
       18 Lift up your eyes, look around and see;
      All these gather together and come to you.
      As I live,” says the LORD,
      “ You shall surely clothe yourselves with them all as an ornament,
      And bind them on you as a bride does.

Footnotes:Isaiah 49:5 Qere, Dead Sea Scrolls, and Septuagint read is gathered to Him; Kethib reads is not gathered. Isaiah 49:17 Dead Sea Scrolls, Septuagint, Targum, and Vulgate read builders.

Second Reading: Matt. 1:1-17

The Genealogy of Jesus Christ

 1 The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the Son of David, the Son of Abraham: 2 Abraham begot Isaac, Isaac begot Jacob, and Jacob begot Judah and his brothers. 3 Judah begot Perez and Zerah by Tamar, Perez begot Hezron, and Hezron begot Ram. 4 Ram begot Amminadab, Amminadab begot Nahshon, and Nahshon begot Salmon. 5 Salmon begot Boaz by Rahab, Boaz begot Obed by Ruth, Obed begot Jesse, 6 and Jesse begot David the king.
   David the king begot Solomon by her who had been the wife[a] of Uriah. 7 Solomon begot Rehoboam, Rehoboam begot Abijah, and Abijah begot Asa.[b] 8 Asa begot Jehoshaphat, Jehoshaphat begot Joram, and Joram begot Uzziah. 9 Uzziah begot Jotham, Jotham begot Ahaz, and Ahaz begot Hezekiah. 10 Hezekiah begot Manasseh, Manasseh begot Amon,[c] and Amon begot Josiah. 11 Josiah begot Jeconiah and his brothers about the time they were carried away to Babylon. 12 And after they were brought to Babylon, Jeconiah begot Shealtiel, and Shealtiel begot Zerubbabel. 13 Zerubbabel begot Abiud, Abiud begot Eliakim, and Eliakim begot Azor. 14 Azor begot Zadok, Zadok begot Achim, and Achim begot Eliud. 15 Eliud begot Eleazar, Eleazar begot Matthan, and Matthan begot Jacob. 16 And Jacob begot Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus who is called Christ. 17 So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations, from David until the captivity in Babylon are fourteen generations, and from the captivity in Babylon until the Christ are fourteen generations.

Footnotes:Matthew 1:6 Words in italic type have been added for clarity. They are not found in the original Greek. Matthew 1:7 NU-Text reads Asaph. Matthew 1:10 NU-Text reads Amos.


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