February 20th, 2019

Wednesday of Septuagesima

First Reading: Job 15:1-23; Job 15:30-35


 1 Then Eliphaz the Temanite replied:

 2 "Would a wise man answer with empty notions
       or fill his belly with the hot east wind?

 3 Would he argue with useless words,
       with speeches that have no value?

 4 But you even undermine piety
       and hinder devotion to God.

 5 Your sin prompts your mouth;
       you adopt the tongue of the crafty.

 6 Your own mouth condemns you, not mine;
       your own lips testify against you.

 7 "Are you the first man ever born?
       Were you brought forth before the hills?

 8 Do you listen in on God's council?
       Do you limit wisdom to yourself?

 9 What do you know that we do not know?
       What insights do you have that we do not have?

 10 The gray-haired and the aged are on our side,
       men even older than your father.

 11 Are God's consolations not enough for you,
       words spoken gently to you?

 12 Why has your heart carried you away,
       and why do your eyes flash,

 13 so that you vent your rage against God
       and pour out such words from your mouth?

 14 "What is man, that he could be pure,
       or one born of woman, that he could be righteous?

 15 If God places no trust in his holy ones,
       if even the heavens are not pure in his eyes,

 16 how much less man, who is vile and corrupt,
       who drinks up evil like water!

 17 "Listen to me and I will explain to you;
       let me tell you what I have seen,

 18 what wise men have declared,
       hiding nothing received from their fathers

 19 (to whom alone the land was given
       when no alien passed among them):

 20 All his days the wicked man suffers torment,
       the ruthless through all the years stored up for him.

 21 Terrifying sounds fill his ears;
       when all seems well, marauders attack him.

 22 He despairs of escaping the darkness;
       he is marked for the sword.

 23 He wanders about—food for vultures [a] ;
       he knows the day of darkness is at hand.

Footnotes:Job 15:23 Or about, looking for food

 30 He will not escape the darkness;
       a flame will wither his shoots,
       and the breath of God's mouth will carry him away.

 31 Let him not deceive himself by trusting what is worthless,
       for he will get nothing in return.

 32 Before his time he will be paid in full,
       and his branches will not flourish.

 33 He will be like a vine stripped of its unripe grapes,
       like an olive tree shedding its blossoms.

 34 For the company of the godless will be barren,
       and fire will consume the tents of those who love bribes.

 35 They conceive trouble and give birth to evil;
       their womb fashions deceit."

Second Reading: John 6:60-71

Many Disciples Desert Jesus

 60On hearing it, many of his disciples said, "This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?"

 61Aware that his disciples were grumbling about this, Jesus said to them, "Does this offend you? 62What if you see the Son of Man ascend to where he was before! 63The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you are spirit[a] and they are life. 64Yet there are some of you who do not believe." For Jesus had known from the beginning which of them did not believe and who would betray him. 65He went on to say, "This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless the Father has enabled him."

 66From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him.

 67"You do not want to leave too, do you?" Jesus asked the Twelve.

 68Simon Peter answered him, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. 69We believe and know that you are the Holy One of God."

 70Then Jesus replied, "Have I not chosen you, the Twelve? Yet one of you is a devil!" 71(He meant Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot, who, though one of the Twelve, was later to betray him.)

Footnotes:John 6:63 Or Spirit


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