January 11th, 2019

Friday of Sunday after New Years


First Reading: Ezek. 33:1-20


Ezekiel a Watchman

 1 The word of the LORD came to me: 2 "Son of man, speak to your countrymen and say to them: 'When I bring the sword against a land, and the people of the land choose one of their men and make him their watchman, 3 and he sees the sword coming against the land and blows the trumpet to warn the people, 4 then if anyone hears the trumpet but does not take warning and the sword comes and takes his life, his blood will be on his own head. 5 Since he heard the sound of the trumpet but did not take warning, his blood will be on his own head. If he had taken warning, he would have saved himself. 6 But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet to warn the people and the sword comes and takes the life of one of them, that man will be taken away because of his sin, but I will hold the watchman accountable for his blood.'

 7 "Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the house of Israel; so hear the word I speak and give them warning from me. 8 When I say to the wicked, 'O wicked man, you will surely die,' and you do not speak out to dissuade him from his ways, that wicked man will die for [a] his sin, and I will hold you accountable for his blood. 9 But if you do warn the wicked man to turn from his ways and he does not do so, he will die for his sin, but you will have saved yourself.

 10 "Son of man, say to the house of Israel, 'This is what you are saying: "Our offenses and sins weigh us down, and we are wasting away because of [b] them. How then can we live?" ' 11 Say to them, 'As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign LORD, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn from their ways and live. Turn! Turn from your evil ways! Why will you die, O house of Israel?'

 12 "Therefore, son of man, say to your countrymen, 'The righteousness of the righteous man will not save him when he disobeys, and the wickedness of the wicked man will not cause him to fall when he turns from it. The righteous man, if he sins, will not be allowed to live because of his former righteousness.' 13 If I tell the righteous man that he will surely live, but then he trusts in his righteousness and does evil, none of the righteous things he has done will be remembered; he will die for the evil he has done. 14 And if I say to the wicked man, 'You will surely die,' but he then turns away from his sin and does what is just and right- 15 if he gives back what he took in pledge for a loan, returns what he has stolen, follows the decrees that give life, and does no evil, he will surely live; he will not die. 16 None of the sins he has committed will be remembered against him. He has done what is just and right; he will surely live.

 17 "Yet your countrymen say, 'The way of the Lord is not just.' But it is their way that is not just. 18 If a righteous man turns from his righteousness and does evil, he will die for it. 19 And if a wicked man turns away from his wickedness and does what is just and right, he will live by doing so. 20 Yet, O house of Israel, you say, 'The way of the Lord is not just.' But I will judge each of you according to his own ways."

Footnotes:Ezekiel 33:8 Or in ; also in verse Ezekiel 33:10 Or away in


Second Reading: Rom. 3:1-18


God's Faithfulness

 1What advantage, then, is there in being a Jew, or what value is there in circumcision? 2Much in every way! First of all, they have been entrusted with the very words of God.

 3What if some did not have faith? Will their lack of faith nullify God's faithfulness? 4Not at all! Let God be true, and every man a liar. As it is written:
   "So that you may be proved right when you speak
      and prevail when you judge."[a]

 5But if our unrighteousness brings out God's righteousness more clearly, what shall we say? That God is unjust in bringing his wrath on us? (I am using a human argument.) 6Certainly not! If that were so, how could God judge the world? 7Someone might argue, "If my falsehood enhances God's truthfulness and so increases his glory, why am I still condemned as a sinner?" 8Why not say—as we are being slanderously reported as saying and as some claim that we say—"Let us do evil that good may result"? Their condemnation is deserved.

No One is Righteous

 9What shall we conclude then? Are we any better[b]? Not at all! We have already made the charge that Jews and Gentiles alike are all under sin. 10As it is written:
   "There is no one righteous, not even one;
    11there is no one who understands,
      no one who seeks God.
 12All have turned away,
      they have together become worthless;
   there is no one who does good,
      not even one."[c]
 13"Their throats are open graves;
      their tongues practice deceit."[d]
   "The poison of vipers is on their lips."[e]
    14"Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness."[f]
 15"Their feet are swift to shed blood;
    16ruin and misery mark their ways,
 17and the way of peace they do not know."[g]
    18"There is no fear of God before their eyes."[h]

Footnotes:Romans 3:4 Psalm 51:4 Romans 3:9 Or worse Romans 3:12 Psalms 14:1-3; 53:1-3; Eccles. 7:20 Romans 3:13 Psalm 5:9 Romans 3:13 Psalm 140:3 Romans 3:14 Psalm 10:7 Romans 3:17 Isaiah 59:7,8 Romans 3:18 Psalm 36:1


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